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Walden is an autobiographical account of Henry David Thoreau's experiment in simple living in a small one room cabin on the banks of Walden Pond in Concord, Massachusetts. He lived there 2 years and 2 months, he recounts in the beginning of the text, but condensed the narrative to just one year for clarity. The book is essentially Thoreau's exploration of just how simple one person could live, by looking at things in ideal terms and trying to work some of those things into his way of life. He asks, what are the essentials for a person to live and go about living? Noting that until these thing have been gotten, man cannot confront more meaningful pursuits. Some people have looked at Thoreau's attempts at living life simply as a lazy man's approach to life but at Walden his life was anything but lazy. He spent 4 hours a day walking in the woods, much of it, in observing and chronicling nature. He kept a 2 acre mini-farm, growing beans and other crops, doing all the work by hand. He occasionally hired his services out to townspeople doing odd jobs, surveying, carpentry and gardening. I personally have read Walden several times since a teenager. I am now 60. I have several copies of the book on the shelf, continuing to take one or another down to read some of the passages I had underlined years ago, and then underlining a few more. I always look on these times as visiting an old friend who has taught me many things about living and what I should see as important to put value on and strive toward.--Submitted by Mike Jordan.
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