Loy Machedo's Reviews > Self-Reliance

Self-Reliance by Ralph Waldo Emerson
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review
Apr 23, 2012

it was amazing
Read in April, 2012

Self Reliance by Ralph Waldo Emerson is a collection of thoughts published by the author in the year 1841. It is indeed a very rare manuscript as it urges its readers to do the unthinkable – trust your gut feeling, your intuition, your common sense, your heart, your spirit and soul – rather than follow the will of the majority or the popular opinion of the masses.

Personally, I consider this, his masterpiece

But herein lies the twist.

I will request you not to read the book.

Simply because this book will bring out reactions.
Strange reactions.
In my case, it frustrated me, irritated me, made me think and it confused me.

On one hand this was a very small book.
But on the other hand it turned to be the book that took me the longest time to read.

On one side it proved to be a book that was supposed to be easy.
On the other hand it proved to be a book that was hardest to distill & absorb.

On one aspect it gave this sense of joy as it was a book of timeless wisdom.
On the other, it gave this immense sense of guilt as it proved to be a book that questioned ones values.

I would classify this book as being selfless while asking to be selfish.

For instance, consider the following quotes taken from the book:
• Whoso would be a man must be a nonconformist.
• Trust thyself: every heart vibrates to that iron string.
• What I must do is all that concerns me, not what the people think.
• Nothing can bring you peace but yourself.
• Discontent is the want of self-reliance: it is infirmity of will.
• Travelling is a fool's paradise.
• Insist on yourself; never imitate.
• An institution is the lengthened shadow of one man.

It is a very deep, very powerful and very philosophical book containing the timeless wisdom of a genius, a gem of a man, and a great soul.

But if you are looking for a nice story, interesting read or an attention grabbing book – please avoid this book at all costs.

This book has the virtue and the power to give you a splitting headache.
It is not a read for the faint hearted.
It is rather a manuscript to reflect, mediate and have the courage to act upon.

I rate this book a perfect 10 out of 10 and would request you – buy this book at your own risk.

The side effects being – a splitting headache, a confusing vocabulary and a frustrating mindset when you cannot understand the simplicity of thought.

Loy Machedo
14 likes · flag

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read Self-Reliance.
Sign In »

Reading Progress

03/18/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-1 of 1) (1 new)

dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Vijai (new) - added it

Vijai Bravo! very well written and sincere review.

back to top