what I know about transcendentalism is that it was a movement in the northeast region of the united states of america in the 1800s and ralph waldo emerson either started it, or cofounded it with henry david thoreau and the usual uncredited women in their circle. emerson took a bunch of ideas from eastern religion, specifically hinduism, and mixed it in with the thoughts of western philosophers like nietzsche and schopenhauer. (totally spitballing here, i just associate freddie with schopie.) since emerson was a devout christian, the base of the mashup was pilgrim-style massachusetts-bay protestantism. emerson mixed in the juicy non-dualism of hindu/buddhist high thought, mysticism, and ego-cracking mentalism without the actual strictures and abstinences. or different ones. ***
emerson wanted to live good. he wanted us all to live good! and we all want to live good. it’s basically all we want. but how? how do we live?
godz! tell us! or show us!
take us to the woods
ralph waldo emerson’s house is still there, in concord, mass. so, almost boston.
when he bought this house he planted a bunch of chestnut trees. they all died because chestnuts went extinct in a blight. (tree experts blame it on the chinese chestnut. see a pattern here?)
cry for the american chestnut, cry and cry.
like the american chestnut tree, the ocean is a god. and we’re going to kill the ocean. therefore we’re going to kill god. can you kill god? at first, the ocean looks too big to be killed but think again! we’re intent on it.
when I say we… who is we? i’m a person swimming in ignorance and suffering and you’re a person swimming in the same blobby blob and we are one. one we. a giant’s wasp’s nest hidden between the walls of self and self-deception. blobbing along and also, trying, living, and pushing on into the good. you, me, schopie, freddie, ralphie, and the ladies who taught them everything they knew.
(extra credit: see SOLARIS OCEAN)
imagine an army of homeless people, dressed like zombies in a hollywood movie, or wait, it’s the other way around. the movie studio told the zombie extras to dress like homeless people. and these extras aren’t homeless, but maybe almost? or maybe some of them ARE actually homeless. some of them are poor enough to be afraid of homelessness. who isn’t?
the TOTALITY is that we are all the walking dead.
what a relief.
so we don’t have to keep trying. we can rest now. we can stop trying. we don’t have to join the actor’s union. we don’t need benefits.
or maybe benefits will come in handy. so, we have to try.
[***NOTE: one caffeine-fueled morning i had the idea to write articles about literary or philosophical concepts and movements without doing any research or google dives. to write off the top of my head. like most caffeine-fueled ideas, this one didn’t keep my attention for more than an hour. i wrote one “article.” luckily i only wrote this one.***]