Ralph Waldo Emerson was a prominent American philosopher, essayist, and poet who lived in the 19th century. While he is best known for his works on nature and self-reliance, he was also an avid runner who believed that running was an essential part of his creative process. In this blog post, we’ll explore Emerson’s views on running and how it contributed to his literary works.
Emerson’s Views on Running
Emerson was a firm believer in the connection between the body and the mind. He believed that exercise, and specifically running, was necessary for maintaining a healthy body and a clear mind. In one of his essays, he wrote, “The body is the harp of the soul, and it responds to the spirit’s music.” He saw running as a way to tune the body, making it more receptive to the music of the spirit.
Emerson was also a proponent of the outdoors and the benefits of being in nature. He believed that running in nature was a way to connect with the natural world, which he saw as a source of inspiration and creativity. He believed that running in the woods or along a river could stimulate the imagination and help to generate new ideas and insights.
Running and Emerson’s Literary Works
Emerson’s views on running were reflected in his literary works. In his essay “The Poet,” he wrote, “For it is not metres, but a metre-making argument that makes a poem.” He saw running as a way to make that argument by tuning the body and the mind. Running was a way to bring the body and the mind into harmony, which allowed him to create the “metre-making argument” of his poems and essays.
In his essay “Nature,” Emerson wrote, “In the woods, we return to reason and faith.” He saw running in nature as a way to return to that reason and faith, which he believed were essential for creativity and insight. Running in nature was a way to break free from the distractions and noise of everyday life and connect with the natural world.
Ralph Waldo Emerson was an influential thinker and writer who believed that running was an essential part of his creative process. He saw running as a way to tune the body and the mind, connect with nature, and generate new ideas and insights. His views on running were reflected in his literary works, which continue to inspire and influence readers today. Whether you’re a writer or not, Emerson’s views on running can inspire you to take up this healthy and creative activity.