The following is a selection of short tidbits from volume five of Emerson’s journals. They are too short to make individual posts on this blog, but many of them have been posted to the Ralph_W_Emerson Twitter account. Follow Waldo on Twitter for more of the same.
Be assured. There is as deep a wisdom in embroidered coats & blue & pink ribbons, as in truth & righteousness.
Every man is an angel in disguise, a god playing the fool.
On visits. If I had anything to say to you, you would find me in your house pretty quick.
A courthouse is a good place to learn the limits of man.
We think we are approaching a star. I fear it is a nebula. At least individual aims are very nebulous.
There is no wall like an idea.
To know that the sky is everywhere blue you need not travel around the world.
In Shakespear I actually shade my eyes as I read for the splendor of the thoughts.
Strange is this alien despotism of Sleep which takes two persons lying in each other’s arms & separates them leagues, continents, asunder.
The book is always dear which has made us for moments idealists. That which can dissipate this block of earth into shining ether is genius.
The moment we enter into the higher thoughts, fame is no more affecting to the ear then the faint tinkle of the passing sleigh bell.
Art is a mixture of the human mind with Nature.
The motto of the discontented man, is, Anywhere but here.
Shall I not treat all men as gods?
The world is large enough, the year is long enough for all that is to be done in it.
Can a man forget anything which he truly knows? No, for that which he knows, that is he. The more knower, the more man.
Truth & originality go abreast always.
It lies with you to make that thing you do the one thing important.
Magnitude is nothing to science.
All cultivation tends steadily to degrade Nature into an organ, a spectacle, an expedient. Man’s enchanted dust.