EmersonThe Study Group’s next discussion will focus on Ralph Waldo Emerson. Our discussion question for this meeting will be, “Is Emerson’s approach to religion still relevant to how we live our lives today?”  In trying to answer this, we will be discussing three of his essays:

1. Divinity School Address (1838)
2. Worship (1860)
3. Character (1866)

Among the various Emerson essays, these essays make more of a sustained coherent argument rather than stream of consciousness points. However, they do have some of the pithy quotes that Emerson excels in as well. And by no means does Emerson think that what religion does can be achieved solely by rational understanding. That remains a consistent point. He has a quite inspiring faith in the power of the moral sentiment alone, without rational argument.
Note that the 1866 Character essay is the THIRD essay of this title that Emerson wrote over his long career. The discussion will probably work better if we all have read the same Character essay.
You can find ALL of these essays online for free. The Bartleby website seems to have close to the Collected Works of Emerson available for free, and “Emerson Central” has many Emerson essays online. The Divinity School Address is at: http://www.bartleby.com/90/

The Divinity School Address is at
http://www.bartleby.com/90/0103.html
http://www.emersoncentral.com/divaddr.htm

Worship is at:
http://www.bartleby.com/90/0606.html
http://www.emersoncentral.com/worship.htm

The 1866 Character essay is at:
http://www.bartleby.com/90/1004.html

Our next meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, October 21 at 7:30 p.m. in Room 19 at the church. New participants are always welcome! For more information, please contact Tim Bartik at 269-806-1904, or bartik@upjohn.org.

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