papalagi (papalagi) wrote,
papalagi
papalagi

Джемс Уильям Memories and Studies. Published posthumously. 1911

An Address delivered at the Centenary of the Birth of Ralph Waldo Emerson in Concord, May 25 1903, and printed in the published proceedings of that meeting.
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The type was that of what he liked to call the scholar, the perceiver of pure truth; and the mission was that of the reporter in worthy form of each perception. The day is good, he said, in which we have the most perceptions.
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This was the first half of Emerson, but only half; for genius, as he said, is insatiate for expression, and truth has to be clad in the right verbal garment. The form of the garment was so vital with Emerson that it is impossible to separate it from the matter. They form a chemical combination — thoughts which would be trivial expressed otherwise, are important through the nouns and verbs to which he married them.
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"Causes " innumerable sought to enlist him as their "worker " — all got his smile and word of sympathy, but none entrapped him into service. The struggle against slavery itself, deeply as it appealed to him, found him firm: "God must govern his own world, and knows his way out of this pit without my desertion of my post, which has none to guard it but me. I have quite other slaves to face than those Negroes, to wit, imprisoned thoughts far back in the brain of man, and which have no watchman or lover or defender but me". This in reply to the possible questions of his own conscience.
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"The fact that I am here certainly shows me that the Soul has need of an organ here, and shall I not assume the post?"
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