Simplicity "Where I Lived and What I Lived for" Essay

Topics: Henry David Thoreau, Walden, Concord, Massachusetts Pages: 3 (1038 words) Published: March 2, 2013
“Where I Lived and What I Lived For” Essay
You are homeless and have almost no possessions. Would you consider yourself rich or poor? You would call yourself poor, of course. Henry David Thoreau would disagree. In the mid1800s he decided to abandon civilization and live alone on Walden Pond. For two years he lived in a cabin away from other people. He was free of the complications of normal life and lived very simply, without worries. In his essay, Thoreau claims that those without many possessions are actually richer than those that have many. By living alone, on the pond, Thoreau realized the value of living simply and how technology is unnecessary and actually hurts our lives.

Thoreau writes down his experience and what he learned in an essay called “Where I Lived and What I Lived For”. In the essay he talks about deciding to live on a pond, only a couple miles from the city, but to him an unexplored corner of the universe. He wants to live deliberately and to simplify his life. “Why should we live with such hurry and waste of life? We are determined to be starved before we are hungry.” (63) The world was moving too fast so to enjoy life he needed to slow down. According to Thoreau, newspapers are useless. He talks about how they never tell us anything new. Most of mankind spends their mornings working at a job that they do not like; they are slaves to a career and aren’t able to enjoy the natural world around them. Thoreau realizes this and gets critical of civilized society. In the end he says that all people can improve their lives if only they live more simply. If man removes himself from social existence, he can begin to grasp reality.

In today’s society, it is almost impossible to live simply. There are many things that we need today that makes it so hard. We also keep on wanting more and more things, feeling like we need them. Because of our complicated society, life isn’t how it should be and as a result, people are not happy. We were not meant...
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