Self Reliance and Other Essays

How does this quotation relate to or represent this writer's main purposes and themes in his own time?

“On the bare ground, my head bathed by the blithe air, and uplifted into infinite space, all mean egotism vanishes. I become a transparent eyeball-I am nothing; I see all; the currents of the Universal Being circulate through me-I am part or particle of God . . . I am a lover of uncontained and immortal beauty. In the wilderness, I have something more connate and dear than in the streets or villages. In the tranquil landscape, and especially in the distant line of the horizon, man beholds somewhat as beautiful as his own nature.”

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Emerson was all about the thrill of the individual in the natural world. Like Thoreau who would come after him, Emerson felt man was only truly himself in the wilds of nature. Civilization was simply a mask man wore to hide himself.