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Books, not which afford us a cowering enjoyment, but in which each thought is of unusual daring; such as an idle man cannot... Options
Daemon
Posted: Saturday, February 22, 2014 12:00:00 AM
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Books, not which afford us a cowering enjoyment, but in which each thought is of unusual daring; such as an idle man cannot read, and a timid one would not be entertained by, which even make us dangerous to existing institution--such call I good books.

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)
Trivium_Discipulus
Posted: Saturday, February 22, 2014 12:58:16 AM
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Daemon wrote:
Books, not which afford us a cowering enjoyment, but in which each thought is of unusual daring; such as an idle man cannot read, and a timid one would not be entertained by, which even make us dangerous to existing institution--such call I good books.

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)


Agreed.

Not just books, but ideas.

Ideas that expose an international banking cartel that seized much of the world's Money Power and is now using it as the pinnacle of Sun Tzu's Art of War to bankrupt, consolidate and control the world's populations.
capitán
Posted: Saturday, February 22, 2014 1:09:38 AM

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"Books must be read as deliberately and reservedly as they were written." HDT

---
Probably he was thinking about how his words should be read in the future.
Regardless of whatever he might have been thinking, Walden was written in such way, and read throughly in such way as well.
I just want to say that I, myself, was included in doing so.
Nikhil More
Posted: Saturday, February 22, 2014 1:48:32 AM

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I am not geting meaning properly of this quoteThink
Panos
Posted: Saturday, February 22, 2014 2:41:37 AM

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Nikhil More wrote:
I am not geting meaning properly of this quoteThink


Maybe you haven't read such a book yet :)
Bully_rus
Posted: Saturday, February 22, 2014 4:58:26 AM
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Daemon wrote:
Books, not which afford us a cowering enjoyment, but in which each thought is of unusual daring; such as an idle man cannot read, and a timid one would not be entertained by, which even make us dangerous to existing institution--such call I good books.

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)


Is Mein Kampf fully complies with conditions of a good book?
Apedo Jeomey Bright
Posted: Saturday, February 22, 2014 7:06:10 AM

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I agreed with the quote because there were some books which if you read it,you will not understood or knew what precisely the writer or the story was about.
Apedo Jeomey Bright
Posted: Saturday, February 22, 2014 7:20:24 AM

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Some books are good because of the excitment,the true understanding of what the writer was about and getting the exact picture of the story when reading it.
jcbarros
Posted: Saturday, February 22, 2014 4:27:04 PM

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Is it not the stuff terrorism is made of?
Verbatim
Posted: Saturday, February 22, 2014 5:07:16 PM
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Daemon wrote:
Books, not which afford us a cowering enjoyment, but in which each thought is of unusual daring; such as an idle man cannot read, and a timid one would not be entertained by, which even make us dangerous to existing institution--such call I good books.

Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862)


..."but in which each thought is of unusual daring", would fall short had it not created further, worthwhile and critical thought from within the reader.
Such are the books that leave their mark upon us by fostering at the same time payment of our dues towards the gift of inspiration received.

""Nay, be a Columbus to whole new continents and worlds within you, opening new channels, not of trade, but of thought.""
(Henry David Thoreau)
kenturner1
Posted: Saturday, February 22, 2014 9:16:25 PM

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I guess he liked books to challenge and inspire the reader.
Marguerite
Posted: Saturday, February 22, 2014 9:43:25 PM

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Thoreau was a die-in-a-wool revolutionary and he advocacy for all of us rail against injustice. How can any one not admire his beliefs?
Marguerite
Posted: Saturday, February 22, 2014 9:48:31 PM

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I like Thoreau's use of the word cowering, to cringe in fear, to describe how books should shake us out of our stupor. He writes further: To read well, that is, to read true books in a true spirit, is a noble exercise, and one that will task the reader more than any other exercise which the customs of the day esteem. It requires a training such as the athletes underwent, the steady intention almost of the whole life to this object." Books should be more than a past time but a moment of pure clarity and a call to action. Maybe?
Professor
Posted: Saturday, February 22, 2014 10:52:46 PM

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Marguerite wrote:
I like Thoreau's use of the word cowering, to cringe in fear, to describe how books should shake us out of our stupor. He writes further: To read well, that is, to read true books in a true spirit, is a noble exercise, and one that will task the reader more than any other exercise which the customs of the day esteem. It requires a training such as the athletes underwent, the steady intention almost of the whole life this object." Books should be more than a past time but a moment of pure clarity and a call to action. Maybe?
Marguerite, That is very profound. Many men made statements about the role books play in our life. Thomas Jefferson said, "I can not live with books."

Everyone should write a book in their life. It should be one of the hundred things to do before we die....
D V Sharma
Posted: Saturday, February 22, 2014 11:23:52 PM

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I am unable to understand this confusing statement.Silenced
Absurdicuss
Posted: Saturday, February 22, 2014 11:57:37 PM
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Books that promote thinking beyond what one has been conditioned to believe as truths are worthy to be called "good" by Thoreau's standard of good.
The timid mind will not dare to venture outside their dogmatic box of truth and the idle are to passive to care.

Books that spur one to know for themselves, whether true or not, are in my opinion worth reading.

A good yarn has it's merits too.
Verbatim
Posted: Sunday, February 23, 2014 1:19:49 AM
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"Books, not which afford us a cowering enjoyment,..." Thoreau actually said.

Never curl up with a good book either; stretch out with it instead, body and mind.
Panos
Posted: Sunday, February 23, 2014 4:31:48 AM

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Bully_rus wrote:

Is Mein Kampf fully complies with conditions of a good book?


For me a good book is a book that you can disagree with.
The purpose of a book should be to show you undiscovered places
and to involve different perspectives so that you can argue and evolve your thinking.
That's something like a dialectical method between you and the book.
So yes, a book(likeable or not) as long as it challenges you, is a good book.
Verbatim
Posted: Sunday, February 23, 2014 3:49:24 PM
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Bully_rus wrote:

"Is Mein Kampf fully complies with conditions of a good book?"


Is The Communist Manifesto a good book? Das Kapital? Atlas Shrugged??? Any ideology which has been, or is about to be, proven wrong?

Bully_rus
Posted: Sunday, February 23, 2014 4:39:32 PM
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I like that point of view. But can we say that we know a little bit more about life, death and books than Thoreau back then and therefore be more cautious in our excitement?
Verbatim
Posted: Sunday, February 23, 2014 7:23:56 PM
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Of course, we know quite a bit more, but caution and control over our excitement goes out the same window that lets in the unreasonable, not just the unusual, daring in any book.

It was not by accident that Thoreau's political views had been claimed by interested groups to have inspired some narrowly held views of their own, in order to gain legitimacy, such as anarchists had.
Thoreau's writings, sometimes deliberately ambiguous, were a treasure chest for all seekers.

The books that Thoreau considered good--"which even make us dangerous to existing institution" he must have read with discernment and taken with the necessary grain of salt.
Absurdicuss
Posted: Sunday, February 23, 2014 8:28:36 PM
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Bully_rus wrote:
I like that point of view. But can we say that we know a little bit more about life, death and books than Thoreau back then and therefore be more cautious in our excitement?


I don't think that we can say that we know more now about life and death than they did then, Bully. We live, we die. That is the fundamental truth of the matter. I cannot recall taking into account the many advances in medical sciences, physics as I go through my day.

*****

By my understanding of Thoreau's criteria for a "good book" in the quote Mein Kampf qualifies. someone once asked me if Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ was a good movie. I said "no" but it was a heart wrenching well crafted portrayal of those historic events.


Thoreau apparently held in high regard the writers and readers of thought provoking literary works.

This is not meant as a rebuttal of you or Verb, just some adding another angle.


Verbatim
Posted: Tuesday, February 25, 2014 1:10:49 PM
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I doubt Hitler was aware of Thoreau when he wrote his pamphlet, but if he had been he would have had no love lost on Thoreau's individualism or pacifism,
even less on his literary and political opinion. And that is a just credit to Thoreau.
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