"Nature" is an essay written by Ralph Waldo Emerson, and published by James Munroe and Company in 1836. In the essay Emerson put forth the foundation of transcendentalism, a belief system that espouses a non-traditional appreciation of nature. Transcendentalism suggests that the divine, or God, suffuses nature, and suggests that reality can be understood by studying nature. Emerson's visit to the Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle in Paris inspired a set of lectures he later delivered in Boston which were then published.
Within the essay, Emerson divides nature into four usages: Commodity, Beauty, Language and Discipline. These distinctions define the ways by which humans use nature for their basic needs, their desire for delight, their communication with one another and their understanding of the world. Emerson followed the success of "Nature" with a speech, "The American Scholar", which together with his previous lectures laid the foundation for transcendentalism and his literary career.
In "Nature", Emerson lays out and attempts to solve an abstract problem: that humans do not fully accept nature's beauty. He writes that people are distracted by the demands of the world, whereas nature gives but humans fail to reciprocate. The essay consists of eight sections: Nature, Commodity, Beauty, Language, Discipline, Idealism, Spirit and Prospects. Each section takes a different perspective on the relationship between humans and nature.
In the essay Emerson explains that to experience the "wholeness" with nature for which we are naturally suited, we must be separate from the flaws and distractions imposed on us by society. Emerson believed that solitude is the single mechanism through which we can be fully engaged in the world of nature, writing "To go into solitude, a man needs to retire as much from his chamber as from society. I am not solitary whilst I read and write, though nobody is with me. But if a man would be alone, let him look at the stars."
When a person experiences true solitude, in nature, it "take[s] him away". Society, he says, destroys wholeness, whereas "Nature, in its ministry to man, is not only the material, but is also the process and the result. All the parts incessantly work into each other's hands for the profit of man. The wind sows the seed; the sun evaporates the sea; the wind blows the vapor to the field; the ice, on the other side of the planet, condenses rain on this; the rain feeds the plant; the plant feeds the animal; and thus the endless circulations of the divine charity nourish man."
Emerson defines a spiritual relationship. In nature a person finds its spirit and accepts it as the Universal Being. He writes: "Nature is not fixed but fluid; to a pure spirit, nature is everything."
Emerson uses spirituality as a major theme in the essay. Emerson believed in reimagining the divine as something large and visible, which he referred to as nature; such an idea is known as transcendentalism, in which one perceives a new God and their body, and becomes one with their surroundings. Emerson confidently exemplifies transcendentalism, stating, "From the earth, as a shore, I look out into that silent sea. I seem to partake its rapid transformations: the active enchantment reaches my dust, and I dilate and conspire with the morning wind", postulating that humans and wind are one. Emerson referred to nature as the "Universal Being"; he believed that there was a spiritual sense of the natural world around him. Depicting this sense of "Universal Being", Emerson states, "The aspect of nature is devout. Like the figure of Jesus, she stands with bended head, and hands folded upon the breast. The happiest man is he who learns from nature the lesson of worship".
According to Emerson, there were three spiritual problems addressed about nature for humans to solve: "What is matter? Whence is it? And Whereto?" What is matter? Matter is a phenomenon, not a substance; rather, nature is something that is experienced by humans, and grows with humans' emotions. Whence is it and Whereto? Such questions can be answered with a single answer, nature's spirit is expressed through humans, "Therefore, that spirit, that is, the Supreme Being, does not build up nature around us, but puts it forth through us", states Emerson. Emerson clearly depicts that everything must be spiritual and moral, in which there should be goodness between nature and humans.
"Nature" was controversial to some. One review published in January 1837 criticized the philosophies in "Nature" and disparagingly referred to beliefs as "Transcendentalist", coining the term by which the group would become known.
Henry David Thoreau had read "Nature" as a senior at Harvard College and took it to heart. It eventually became an essential influence for Thoreau's later writings, including his seminal Walden. In fact, Thoreau wrote Walden after living in a cabin on land that Emerson owned. Their longstanding acquaintance offered Thoreau great encouragement in pursuing his desire to be a published author.
- ^Nature. Boston: James Munroe and Company. 1836. Retrieved February 3, 2018 – via Internet Archive.
- ^Liebman, Sheldon W. “Emerson, Ralph Waldo.” The Oxford Encyclopedia of American Literature. Ed. Jay Parini. Oxford University Press, 2004. Web.
- ^“Transcendentalism.” The Oxford Dictionary of English. 2010. Web.
- ^Emerson, Ralph Waldo. "Nature". The Oxford Companion to American Literature. Ed. James D. Hart. Rev. Philip W. Leininger. Oxford University Press, 1995. Web.
- ^Baym, Nina, Wayne Franklin, Philip F. Gura, and Arnold Krupat. The Norton Anthology of American Literature.
- ^Hankins, Barry. The Second Great Awakening and the Transcendentalists. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2004: 24. ISBN 0-313-31848-4
- ^Reidhead, Julia. "Henry David Thoreau", The Norton Anthology of American Literature. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2008. 825-828. Print.
Find very simple and easy to understand essay on nature. Bring some creativity in the education of your lovely kids, children and students who are studying in nursery, KG, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10. Nature is the most important thing for our life and our kids should know about this. So motivate their learning through following nature essay.
Essay on Nature
Nature Essay 1 (100 words)
We live on the most beautiful planet, Earth which has very clean and attractive nature full of greenery. Nature is our best friend which provides us all the resources to live here. It gives us water to drink, pure air to breathe, food to eat, land to stay, animals, plants for our other uses, etc for our betterment. We should fully enjoy the nature without disturbing its ecological balance. We should care our nature, make it peaceful, keep it clean and prevent it from the destruction so that we can enjoy our nature forever. Nature is a most precious gift given by the God to us to enjoy but not to harm.
Nature Essay 2 (150 words)
Nature is the most beautiful and attractive surrounding around us which make us happy and provide us natural environment to live healthy. Our nature provides us variety of beautiful flowers, attractive birds, animals, green plants, blue sky, land, running rivers, sea, forests, air, mountains, valleys, hills and many more things. Our God has created a beautiful nature for the healthy living of us. All the things we use for our living are the assets of nature which we should not spoil and damage.
We should not destroy the originality of the nature and should not imbalance the ecosystem cycle. Our nature provides us beautiful environment to live and enjoy so it is our responsibility to keep it clean and away from all the damages. In the modern era, many selfish and bad activities of the human being have disturbed the nature to a great extent. But we all should try to maintain our nature’s beauty.
Nature Essay 3 (200 words)
The nature is everything around us which surrounds us with beautiful environment. We see and enjoy it every moment. We observe natural changes in it, hear it and feel it everywhere. We should take full advantage of the nature and go out of home for the morning walk daily to breathe pure air and enjoy morning beauty of nature. All though the day it changes it beauty like in the morning when sun rises everything looks bright orange and then yellowish. In the evening when sun sets it again becomes dark orange and then light dark.
The nature has everything for us but we do not have anything for it even we are destroying its property day by day to just fulfill our selfish wishes. In the modern technological world lots of inventions are getting launched daily without its advantage and disadvantage to the nature. It is our responsibility to save the declining assets of our nature to make possible the existence of life forever on the earth. If we do not take any step towards nature conservation, we are keeping our future generations at danger. We should understood its worth and value and try to maintain its natural shape.
Nature Essay 4 (250 words)
Nature is the most precious and valuable gift to us from the God to live our life here on the earth. Nature makes our life easy by providing all the required resources for daily living. We should thankful to our nature for helping, caring and nurturing us like a mother. We can enjoy the sweet sound and scenery of the nature if we peacefully sit in the early morning in the garden. Our nature is adorned with lots of scenic beauty which we can enjoy anytime. Earth has geographical beauty and known as the city of garden or heaven. But it is sad to say that such beautiful gifts of God are declining day by day due to the technological advancement and high level of ignorance of the human beings.
Nature is like our real mother which never harms us but always nourishes us. Walking in the lap of nature in the early morning makes us healthy and strong as well as keeps us away from many lethal diseases like diabetes, chronic heart diseases, high blood pressure, liver problem, digestive system ailments, infections, brain disease, etc. It is good for our health to hear the soft sound of the birds, rattle of the breeze, sound of running fresh air, sound of running water in the river, etc in the early morning. Most of the poets, writers and people used to of yoga and meditation are seen in the early morning in the garden to re-energize their body, mind and soul.
Nature Essay 5 (300 words)
Nature is the most important and integral part of the lives of everyone. Everyone has been blessed with the true love of God in the form of beautiful nature. We should never miss the pleasure of enjoying the nature. Nature has been the most favourite topic of the works of many famous poets, writers, painters and artists. Nature is the beautiful creation of the God which he blessed to us as a precious gift. Nature is everything which surrounds us like water, air, land, sky, fire, river, forests, animals, birds, plants, sun, moon, stars, sea, lake, rain, thunder, storm, etc. Nature is very colourful and has both living and non-living things in its lap.
Everything in the nature has their own power and uniqueness provided by the God. It has its many forms which are changing by season to season and even from minute to minute such as sea looks bright blue in the morning but by noon it looks emerald green colour. Sky changes its colour all through the day from pale pink at sunrise, dazzling blue in late morning, bright orange in evening at sunset and purple by twilight. Our mood also gets changed according to the nature such as happy and hopeful at sun shine, rainy season and spring season. We feel heartily happy at moonlight and little bored and tired in high sun light.
Nature has some powerful transformative power which changes our mood and behaviour accordingly. Nature has power to recover the patients from their diseases if they are provided with the required and pleasant environment. Nature is very essential for our healthy life so we should keep it clean and conserve it for our future generations. We should cut trees and forests, should not despoil the ocean, rivers, should not make hole in ozone layer, should not increase green house effect, global warming and many more through our selfish activities. We should get fully aware about our nature and try our best to keep it natural so that it can nourish life on the earth forever.
Nature Essay 6 (400 words)
Nature is the natural environment which surrounds us, cares us and nourishes us every moment. It provides us a protective layer around us to prevent from the damages. We are not able to survive on the earth without nature like air, land, water, fire and sky. Nature includes everything around us like plants, animals, river, forests, rain, lake, birds, sea, thunder, sun, moon, weather, atmosphere, mountain, desserts, hills, ice, etc. Every form of nature is very powerful which has ability to nourish as well as destroy us.
Now a day, everyone has less time to enjoy nature. In the increasing crowd we forgot to enjoy nature and improve health. We started using technological instruments for our health fitness. However it is very true that nature has power to nourish us and fit us forever. Most of the writers have described the real beauty and advantage of the nature in their writings. Nature has ability to make our mind tension free and cure our diseases. Because of technological advancement in the life of human being, our nature is declining gradually which needs a high level of awareness to keep it in balance and to conserve natural assets.
God has created everything very beautifully seeing which our eyes can never be tired. But we forgot that we too have some responsibility towards our nature to relationship between nature and human beings. How beautiful scenery it looks in morning with sunrise, songs of birds, sounds of lakes, rivers, air and happy gatherings of friends in the evening in garden after a long day of crush. But we forgot to enjoy the beauty of the nature in just fulfilling our duties towards our families.
Sometimes during our holidays we spend our whole day by watching TV, reading news paper, playing indoor games or on the computer but we forgot that outside the door we can do something interesting in the lap of nature ad natural environment. Unnecessarily we left on all the lights of home, we use electricity without need which ultimately increases the heat in the environment called global warming. Our other activities like cutting trees and forests increase the amount of CO2 gas in the environment causing green house effect and global warming.
If we want to be happy and healthy always we should try our best to save our planet and its beautiful nature by stopping our foolish and selfish activities. In order to keep ecosystem in balance we should not cut trees, forests, practice energy and water conservation and many more. Ultimately we are the real user of the nature so we should really take care of it.
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