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Most of the luxuries, and many of the so-called comforts of life, are not only not indispensable, but positive hindrances to... Options
Daemon
Posted: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 12:00:00 AM
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Joined: 3/7/2009
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Location: Inside Farlex computers
Most of the luxuries, and many of the so-called comforts of life, are not only not indispensable, but positive hindrances to the elevation of mankind.

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)
Bully_rus
Posted: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 1:57:00 AM
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Joined: 3/26/2013
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Location: Minsk, Minskaya Voblasts', Belarus
What comforts of life might be or look like in 1854? We cannot judge until we know that... Adjourned.
Baron Swann
Posted: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 2:05:59 AM

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Location: North Miami, Florida, United States
Flushing can never be an hindrance.
pedro
Posted: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 4:48:47 AM
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Joined: 5/21/2009
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http://thoreau.eserver.org/walden1a.html

"Most of the luxuries, and many of the so-called comforts of life, are not only not indispensable, but positive hindrances to the elevation of mankind. With respect to luxuries and comforts, the wisest have ever lived a more simple and meagre life than the poor. The ancient philosophers, Chinese, Hindoo, Persian, and Greek, were a class than which none has been poorer in outward riches, none so rich in inward. We know not much about them. It is remarkable that we know so much of them as we do. The same is true of the more modern reformers and benefactors of their race. None can be an impartial or wise observer of human life but from the vantage ground of what we should call voluntary poverty. Of a life of luxury the fruit is luxury, whether in agriculture, or commerce, or literature, or art. There are nowadays professors of philosophy, but not philosophers. Yet it is admirable to profess because it was once admirable to live. To be a philosopher is not merely to have subtle thoughts, nor even to found a school, but so to love wisdom as to live according to its dictates, a life of simplicity, independence, magnanimity, and trust. It is to solve some of the problems of life, not only theoretically, but practically. The success of great scholars and thinkers is commonly a courtier-like success, not kingly, not manly. They make shift to live merely by conformity, practically as their fathers did, and are in no sense the progenitors of a noble race of men. But why do men degenerate ever? What makes families run out? What is the nature of the luxury which enervates and destroys nations? Are we sure that there is none of it in our own lives? The philosopher is in advance of his age even in the outward form of his life. He is not fed, sheltered, clothed, warmed, like his contemporaries. How can a man be a philosopher and not maintain his vital heat by better methods than other men?"

Interesting question; How many philosophers do we know who have lived the philosophy that they wrote?
ithink140
Posted: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 5:36:49 AM
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Joined: 3/4/2013
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Wait a mo, while I pour a G&T and stoke up my pipe. I’ll lay The Times on my figured walnut side table and settle down in my easy chair and give this some deep consideration. Now, where are my slippers? Ah, there they are on my expensive Afghan rug. Ha, ha, my maid never forgets to attend to me even though we have a big do this evening with suckled pig on the menu.

Now where were we… oh yes, frugality. I entirely agree, why do we bother with the luxuries of life, I ask myself. The man had a good point… we are too cosseted nowadays. What we need is more ‘nose to the grindstone’ and application in life. I did’nt get where I am today without more application and nose to the grindstone stuff… oh no! Puff, puff sip, sip, gulp, pour.

Yes, I will bring this up with Carruthers at golf this afternoon. Damn where is my remote … I need to open the curtains. Betty, Betty... where is that damned maid when a fellow needs her.

PS: I am a bit of a philosopher myself... don't you know.

jcbarros
Posted: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 8:37:40 AM

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Joined: 5/14/2010
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An epicurean? Nay, just hedonist. ;)
ithink140
Posted: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 9:28:58 AM
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Both, my dear friend.
capitán
Posted: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 12:25:29 PM

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Joined: 2/18/2013
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Location: San Salvador, San Salvador, El Salvador
"It is the privilege of gods to want nothing,
and of godlike men to want little."
Diogenes
capitán
Posted: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 12:25:32 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 2/18/2013
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Location: San Salvador, San Salvador, El Salvador
"My greatest skill in life has been to want but little."
Henry David Thoreau.
Verbatim
Posted: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 4:22:11 PM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 10/3/2012
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Daemon wrote:
Most of the luxuries, and many of the so-called comforts of life, are not only not indispensable, but positive hindrances to the elevation of mankind.

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)


OK, like.. what the man said, like.. you can dispense with the luxury of an Audi Q 120 SUV; your Volvo XC90 SUV or the next higher up model is all you need to stay elevated.
Also, to the best of my knowledge, Thoreau never wrote a critical word about the philosophies of X, Y, or the Millennial generations.Think
He rightly foresaw that most of them progenies would forsake one out of seven lattes every week, to boost the elevation of mankind.
Skyoe
Posted: Thursday, October 10, 2013 11:35:12 PM
Rank: Newbie

Joined: 9/13/2013
Posts: 15
Neurons: 45
ithink140 wrote:

Wait a mo, while I pour a G&T and stoke up my pipe. I’ll lay The Times on my figured walnut side table and settle down in my easy chair and give this some deep consideration. Now, where are my slippers? Ah, there they are on my expensive Afghan rug. Ha, ha, my maid never forgets to attend to me even though we have a big do this evening with suckled pig on the menu.

Now where were we… oh yes, frugality. I entirely agree, why do we bother with the luxuries of life, I ask myself. The man had a good point… we are too cosseted nowadays. What we need is more ‘nose to the grindstone’ and application in life. I did’nt get where I am today without more application and nose to the grindstone stuff… oh no! Puff, puff sip, sip, gulp, pour.

Yes, I will bring this up with Carruthers at golf this afternoon. Damn where is my remote … I need to open the curtains. Betty, Betty... where is that damned maid when a fellow needs her.

PS: I am a bit of a philosopher myself... don't you know.



Amusing! I didn’t know that you have this (wry) sense of humor, ithink140. Many times when I ran across your posts, you were debating with other people, and you appeared to be quite serious and sometimes contentious. (I’m speaking my mind, and I’m sorry to you, if my words offended you.) Chances are I have not read enough of your comments which were intended to be entertaining. But in this post, you have certainly shown the funny side of you.
Verbatim
Posted: Friday, October 11, 2013 12:25:08 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 10/3/2012
Posts: 2,251
Neurons: 249,482
Daemon wrote:
Most of the luxuries, and many of the so-called comforts of life, are not only not indispensable, but positive hindrances to the elevation of mankind.

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)


Thoreau may be a bit cryptic at times, granted. But to do him justice in this particular instance, and in light of how current his
150 odd years old statement could be, if only we looked at it with interest, I must wonder what part of the quotation is still a mystery?
ithink140
Posted: Friday, October 11, 2013 6:17:02 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 3/4/2013
Posts: 2,453
Neurons: 17,922
Ah, Skyoe, I am like a many faceted diamond that sparkles in the light of the sun, and I bring out both old things and new from my treasure chest...to mix my metaphors.

I am not offended by your frankness. Peace.
Skyoe
Posted: Friday, October 11, 2013 7:23:33 AM
Rank: Newbie

Joined: 9/13/2013
Posts: 15
Neurons: 45
ithink140 wrote:
Ah, Skyoe, I am like a many faceted diamond that sparkles in the light of the sun, and I bring out both old things and new from my treasure chest...to mix my metaphors.

I am not offended by your frankness. Peace.



My sincere thanks to you, ithink140, for your humorous and kind words. (I spent this afternoon regretting having posted that comment and worrying that you would feel offended and perhaps would react with rage…)

Some years back, in an English class, our teacher asked us:”What do you think are the three most important things originating in England?”We had many different answers, such as, football, steam engine, Newton’s ideas. The teacher then gave us her own answer:”English language, English humor, and English gentlemanliness.” I think that I’ve found these three things all, in your reply. Thank you very much, ithink140.
Verbatim
Posted: Saturday, October 12, 2013 3:04:15 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 10/3/2012
Posts: 2,251
Neurons: 249,482
capitan quoted Thoreau: "My greatest skill in life has been to want but little." Very appropriate.
Quite so he lived, and by wanting but little he put a higher demand on himself.

Good advice is harsh only when -and as long as- there is a comfortable way around it, demanding but little of ourselves.


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