walking

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In his 1861 treatise Walking (free ebook | public library), penned seven years after Walden, Thoreau sets out to remind us of how that primal act of mobility connects us with our essential wildness, that spring of spiritual vitality methodically dried up by our sedentary civilization.

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lives of quiet desperation

Thoreau – Walden: A spiritual Retreat

by Barbara Stoler Miller, Translator of the Bhagavad-Gita in the Afterword:

“Thoreau was moved by his own observation that the mass of his fellow men led ‘lives of quiet desperation.’ He sought to discover freedom from that desperation by refusing to be led by the senses and passions, by living deliberately, by simplifying his life in order to internalize the solitude of a place in nature. He lived in Walden for two years and two months, during which time he confined his desires and actions in such a way that he strove to overcome the limitations of time and absorb himself in nature. Nature was for him the ground of religious life….

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