Self-Reliance Response 1. To start I would have to bring up in the first page where he is talking about how we reject our own thoughts. In this part he says, “Yet he dismisses without notice his thought, because it is his.
In every work of genius we recognize our own rejected thoughts; they come back to us with a certain alienated majesty. Great works of art have no more affecting lesson for us than this.” “Else to-morrow a stranger will say with masterly good sense precisely what we have thought and felt all the time, and we shall be forced to take with shame our own opinion from another.
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” What he is saying is that too many times we second guess ourselves leading to just thinking that we are wrong, only to later see our thoughts played out by others and then we are stuck thinking what if I would have acted on that thought.2. Second, he talks about ruler’s effects on the world, “The world has been instructed by its kings, who have so magnetized the eyes of nations.
It has been taught by this colossal symbol the mutual reverence that is due from man to man. The joyful loyalty with which men have everywhere suffered the king, the noble, or the great proprietor to walk among them by a law of his own, make his own scale of men and things and reverse theirs, pay for benefits not with money but with honor, and represent the law in his person, was the hieroglyphic by which they obscurely signified their consciousness of their own right and comeliness, the right of every man.” In this section when he is talking about the great rulers of the past he says that they were never followers but they lead by there own thoughts and were honored because of it. The idea of this passage to cause you to look at how you view your leaders and what they are actually doing compared to what is just being said.
3. Next we get to his “numbers”. In number 1 he brings up the subject of regret “Another sort of false prayers are our regrets. Discontent is the want of self-reliance: it is infirmity of will. Regret calamities if you can thereby help the sufferer; if not, attend your own work and already the evil begins to be repaired. Our sympathy is just as base.
We come to them who weep foolishly and sit down and cry for company, instead of imparting to them truth and health in rough electric shocks, putting them once more in communication with their own reason. The secret of fortune is joy in our hands. Welcome evermore to gods and men is the self-helping man. For him all doors are flung wide; him all tongues greet, all honors crown, all eyes follow with desire. Our love goes out to him and embraces him because he did not need it. We solicitously and apologetically caress and celebrate him because he held on his way and scorned our disapprobation.
The gods love him because men hated him. "To the persevering mortal," said Zoroaster, "the blessed Immortals are swift." Once again he brings up the point that by being original and being the self-helping man you will.