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Quotation by Ralph Waldo Emerson
The foregoing generations beheld God and nature face to face; we, through their eyes. Why should not we also enjoy an original relation to the universe? Why should not we have a poetry and philosophy of insight and not of tradition, and a religion by revelation to us, and not the history of theirs?
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803–1882), U.S. essayist, poet, philosopher. Nature, Introduction (1836, revised and repr. 1849).
The opening salvo of Emerson's book-length essay establishes the theme that will haunt most of his writings, namely the search for daily revelation unfettered by tradition or institutional strictures.
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