Walden Once More: Week 8, Day 1

Henrietta Davida Thoreau

In proportion as he simplifies his life, the laws of the universe will appear less complex, and solitude will not be solitude, nor poverty poverty, nor weakness weakness.” –Henry David Thoreau

When I first began my experiment living here, my biggest fear, if I am perfectly honest, was that I would crumble and lose myself without having others to interact with.

Henrietta Davida Thoreau

This has not happened.

There is this idea out there that who we are is defined by who we are in relation. We are someone’s daughter, someone’s friend, someone’s employee, someone’s acquaintance. We are the person who possesses this particular set of beliefs, who lives according to this specific set of standards. The one who dresses in such a way and who wears her hair like this.

Henrietta Davida Thoreau

And, for all these weeks, faced with no one to see me, no one to feed back to me a definition of self, I have not crumbled. I have found my essential self.

All of the external has crumbled–and as it has done so, I am revealed.

Henrietta Davida Thoreau

I am still in relation–in relation to the daily tasks of washing dishes, preparing meals, tending the gardens, writing, reading, exercising my body and mind.

Henrietta Davida Thoreau

I am in relation to the apple tree in the garden, the ground beneath my feet, the air that I breathe.

Without definition, my boundaries become the essential–this part of me that moves through life.

I am not alone–solitude is not solitude. I am, in essence, connected with all around me, with all that is expressed through me, including those genes of ancestors past and the potential of descendants future. The importance of self lessens as I am faced with nothing and no one to reflect back to me a sense of importance.

Henrietta Davida Thoreau

There is no one to contradict my expression of self–my path of living–and so I have nothing to defend. I simply have myself in relation to the laws of the universe, moving through wholeness and harmony within these laws.

Language, at times, falls away.

And at other times, words return, issuing from deep within as I look around me at this world, as I feel this earth beneath my feet.

Henrietta Davida Thoreau

Health is found in the wholeness of a life in harmony with the universal laws.

I have nothing to resist, nothing to contradict, and everything to accept, even this mystery that surpasses understanding.

Henrietta Davida Thoreau

A day can move through mystery–and one can find the miraculous within the most basic flash of life and light.

Simplicity, itself, is the heart of the deepest mystery.

I have no words. I have the total lexicon within me. I am nothing with no one to reflect me. I am a part of the universal, a mote within the cosmos, a spark that expresses this one instance of me.

Henrietta Davida Thoreau

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