The unexamined life is not worth living
~Henry David Thoreau
In short, Thoreau still urges me to examine my life, and the force of his words gives me the power to do what needs to be done--and, granted, sometimes it shames me in my weakness.
To remain unmoved by Thoreau's writings is a puzzle to me. It reminds me of a man who after trying to gnaw through the thick skin of a coconut proclaimed coconuts unfit to eat. Most of my friends who tell me that they "do not like Thoreau" seem to know very little of his writing; instead, they tell anecdotal stories 100 times removed from its source that in some shallow way support their thesis.
This is not a book or an experience you can say, "I don't get!" This is a book where you might need to say, "I need to dig deeper, think longer, and ask more questions," but it should not be a book that eludes you. Ironically, my only fear is that you'll hide from the book itself.
Like a good fishing hole, all I can say is that you will pull more out of this than you put in.
The Work This Week: UPDATED!!!
- Create a category in your blog called "Walden"
- Download "Fitz's Abbreviated Walden 1-4" and save it to iBooks.
- After each section we read, write a Reading Journal Response: In your responses, reflect on your first thoughts; ask questions of yourself, agree or disagree with Thoreau--but do some with passion and conviction, and write about the possible "takeaways" from each section. Why do you think his words resonate with so many people. Each Reading Journal Response should be approximately 300-500 words in length.
- Post reading responses on your blog (in the Walden category) and join
- Read and discuss "Necessities" and "Clothing"
- Write second and third Reading Journal Responses.
- Complete and comment on Reading Responses
- Time for catchup and journaling
FOURTH CLASS (IF YOU HAVE IT)
- Finish any needed work. Work on Journal Entries and Commenting.
- Complete any unfinished work