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Emerson’s Memorabilia of Philosophy

This excerpt from Richard Geldard’s book God In Concord is the epilogue of the book and provides an insight into the core ideas which influenced Emerson throughout his life.

In the early 1860s, at a point
in his life when he had seen himself waning in strength–indeed even
dreamed once that he had fallen asleep while lecturing–Emerson took
the time to jot down in his notebooks the essentials of his journey as
a seeker. It was an exercise in review and recollection. In notebook
DL, in use from 1860 through 1866, he noted what he called “The
Memorabilia of philosophy,” those ideas and statements which were for
him most worthy of recollection. These were:
        Plato’s doctrine of Reminiscence
 
       Berkeley’s Ideal World
        Socrates’ interpretation of the Delphian oracle
        The Dance of Plotinus
        Doctrine of Absorption [Nirvana]
        Greek saying, that the soul is absorbed into God as a phial of water broken in the sea
        Plotinus’s saying: “There however every body is pure, (transparent), and each inhabitant is as it were an eye.”
 
       Heraclitus said: “War is the father of all things.”
        “A dry light makes the best soul.”
        “Like can only be known by like.”
         Nec sentire deum nisi qui pars ipse deorum est.” [“Only if a man be himself the infinite, can the infinite be known by him.”]
        Ne te quaesiveris extra (Persius, Satires, I,7) [“Look to no one outside yourself.”]
        “Natura in minimus existit.” (Aristotle) [“. . . the nature of everything is best seen in its smallest proportions.”] trans. Francis Bacon
        Hunger & thirst after righteousness. (Matt. 5:6)
        Kingdom of God cometh not by observation. (Luke 17:20)
        . . . is received as a little child (Luke 18:17)
        Christianity, pure deism
        God considers integrity not munificence. ( Socrates)

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