Transcendentalism in Modern Art

Topics: Ralph Waldo Emerson, Transcendentalism, Henry David Thoreau Pages: 2 (654 words) Published: June 6, 2007
The majority of people, when they listen to music they are most likely not thinking about philosophy much less the idea of transcendentalism. In fact, if one were to ask about the transcendentalist beliefs they probably wouldn't know they are; it's amazing to see how many of the ideas are in many modern songs in today's culture. Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry David Thoreau were essayist that came up with the concept of transcendentalism. The song "Tears and Rain: by James Blunt, is transcendentalist because it describes the ideas of embracing the positive and the negative experiences, transcending the ordinary and the worldly, and choosing between good and evil.

Whether something turns out good or not embracing all of ones experiences teaches about life, they make your life complete. Of course, one should learn from their mistakes and grow from them, on the other hand not all of ones experiences are bad or mistakes and they help you grow as a person. Blunt states in his song "I've heard what they say, but I'm not here for trouble. Far, far away; find comfort in pain. All pleasure's the same: it just keeps me from trouble. It's more than just words: it's just tears and rain." (lines 21-24). Emerson agrees with this by saying "that he must take himself for better for worse as his portion; that though the wide universe is full of good…" (page 364).

Undoubtedly, transcending the ordinary and the worldly was an eccentric idea to grasp many years ago when people weren't as accepting as they are now. Once one transcends from the worldly then the Truth is revealed. The speaker of the song says, "How I wish I could surrender my soul; Shed the clothes that become my skin;" (lines 1-2) and in another part "How I wish I could walk through the doors of my mind;" (line 12). Similarly, Emerson believed, "accept the place the divine providence has found for you, the society of you contempories, the connection of events. Great men have always done so, and confided...
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