What I’ve Learned from Ralph Waldo Emerson | Richard Uzelac

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What I’ve Learned from Ralph Waldo Emerson by Richard Uzelac

by Richard Uzelac

As Christmas passed, I reminisced about the time when Waldo Emerson was on that tour to Europe during the holidays in 1832, where he wrote his “strikingly” original essay titled “Nature,” which brought about American Transcendentalism. – a protest against the general state of American culture and society during that period of British Empiricism, when they argued that knowledge could be gained from sensory experience and rational thinking rather than innate ideas. Emerson brought America the idea of seeing its own cultural and artistic possibilities through his journal – “Nature”.

American Transcendentalism is how the birth of goodness or people and nature is. Despite society and its institutions corrupting the purity of individuals, people are at their best when they’re truly independent and self-reliant. His insight was that nature is in us, part of us, and not just its higher forms but in all its “grotesquery and wildness”.

Throw off all the shackles of society and embrace its innate goodness, for us to achieve our own full potential - Richard Uzelac

My Ralph Waldo Emerson Favorite Quotes – Richard Uzelac

richard uzelac favorite ralph waldo emerson quotes

“So a Thought and You Reap an Action

So an Act and You Reap a Habit

Sow a Habit and You Reap a Character

Sow a Character

and You Reap a Destiny” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

In my opinion, a person without a mindset is almost nonexistent, except for those who are biologically impaired; we need to value what thinking means. Every attitude starts with a thought. It’s not someone else’s action that makes a destination, but how you think..




“Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day. You shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.”

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

It is helpful to view daily blunders and absurdities as small leaks taking place in a very large glass of your favorite beverage, well at least, regardless of what happens, you can always have a half-full perspective, knowing that every day is a fresh start.





“you cannot do a kindness too soon

for you never know how soon it will be

too late.” 

This cuts deep. As we all are so full of ourselves, our lives, our world we tend to forget to be kind to the people around us. 





“Life is a journey, not a destination.”

The road to our purpose is a journey filled with hardships, heartache, and special moments. The road won’t always be a plane, but we will face many challenges along the way.

At times, it will be easy to travel and we will make steady progress, at other times it may be rocky, and we may encounter roadblocks that block us from moving forward.





“Nothing can bring you peace but yourself.” ..

Unless the wisdom of your own heart and intuition guide you, then don’t be trapped by dogma – that is, don’t be swayed by other people’s opinions. And most importantly, don’t allow other people’s opinions to drown out your own inner voice. It is yourself that grounds your inner peace. 




“Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of your own mind.”

This implies to ignore the influence of other people’s thinking, honor your own and the inherent goodness of the individual self, and ignore the masses and the system or principle of government and religion. In other words, it is a call to be an individualist, not one who conforms to others.

“If we encounter a man of rare intellect, we should ask him what books he reads.” 

“Nothing Great Was Ever Achieved Without Enthusiasm.” 




“A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines. With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do. He may as well concern himself with his shadow on the wall. Speak what you think now in hard words, and to-morrow speak what to-morrow thinks in hard words again, though it contradict every thing you said to-day. — ‘Ah, so you shall be sure to be misunderstood.’ — Is it so bad, then, to be misunderstood? Pythagoras was misunderstood, and Socrates, and Jesus, and Luther, and Copernicus, and Galileo, and Newton, and every pure and wise spirit that ever took flesh. To be great is to be misunderstood.”

It is hard for someone to speak his thought. Many criticize things that are original and new, something that’s out of conformity. How many people in America or worldwide are being bullied for being unique? You know when suddenly, these bright individuals turn out to be great entrepreneurs, and these bullies work for them; isn’t it ironic? Follow your intuition and be an individualist. The world is full of conformists, but there are also individuals who are true to themselves. You can be an individualist and still be connected to the community. You don’t have to fit in; you just have to be yourself and be kind.


thoughts to ponder from Ralph Waldo Emerson



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