70+ Best Transcendentalism Quotes: Exclusive Selection

Transcendentalism is a philosophical movement that developed in the late 1820s and 1830s in the eastern United States. A core belief is in the inherent goodness of people and nature. Inspirational transcendentalism quotes will encourage you to think a little deeper than you usually would and broaden your perspective.

If you’re searching for wise philosophy quotes that perfectly capture what you’d like to say or just want to feel inspired yourself, browse through an amazing collection of inspiring existentialism quotes, powerful ethics quotes and famous nihilism quotes.

Famous Transcendentalism Quotes

Be yourself- not your idea of what you think somebody else’s idea of yourself should be. Henry David Thoreau

What lies behind you and what lies in front of you, pales in comparison to what lies inside of you. Ralph Waldo Emerson

To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day. Albert Einstein

Unless you try to do something beyond what you have already mastered, you will never grow. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Nature is so powerful, so strong. Capturing its essence is not easy – your work becomes a dance with light and the weather. It takes you to a place within yourself. Annie Leibovitz

transcendentalism quotes

Belief fuels our decisions – even when we are not clearly aware of those beliefs. Mary Anne Radmacher

The essence of all religions is one. Only their approaches are different. Mahatma Gandhi

Nature provides exceptions to every rule. Margaret Fuller

Nothing astonishes men so much as common sense and plain dealing. Ralph Waldo Emerson

I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. Henry David Thoreau

Rather than love, than money, than fame, give me truth. Henry David Thoreau

To laugh often and love much; to win the respect of intelligent persons and the affection of children; to earn the approbation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Inspirational Transcendentalism Quotes

Man seeks to change the foods available in nature to suit his tastes, thereby putting an end to the very essence of life contained in them. Sai Baba

The essence of greatness is neglect of the self. James Anthony Froude

I am not responsible for the successful working of the machinery of society. Henry David Thoreau

Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense. Ralph Waldo Emerson

This world is but a canvas to our imagination. Henry David Thoreau

All life is an experiment. The more experiments you make the better. Ralph Waldo Emerson

You can never really live anyone else’s life, not even your child’s. The influence you exert is through your own life, and what you’ve become yourself. Eleanor Roosevelt

As to the mental essence, we find it in infants devoid of every mental form. Avicenna

All unrest is but the struggle of the soul to reassure herself of her inborn immortality. Amos Bronson Alcott

Back through the ages of barbarism and civilization, in all tongues, we find this instinctive pleasure in the imitative action that is the very essence of all drama. George P. Baker

Whatever you do, you need courage. Whatever course you decide upon, there is always someone to tell you that you are wrong. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Even if you are a minority of one, the truth is the truth. Mahatma Gandhi

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however, measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

Is it so bad, then, to be misunderstood? Pythagoras was misunderstood, and Socrates, and Jesus, and Luther, and Copernicus, and Galileo, and Newton, and every pure and wise spirit that ever took flesh. To be great is to be misunderstood. Ralph Waldo Emerson

I am suffocated and lost when I have not the bright feeling of progression. Margaret Fuller

Amazing Transcendentalism Quotes

As if you could kill time without injuring eternity. Henry David Thoreau

God is, even though the whole world deny him. Truth stands, even if there be no public support. It is self-sustained. Mahatma Gandhi

There are always two parties; the establishment and the movement. Ralph Waldo Emerson

It is easy in the world to live after the world’s opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Don’t be pushed by your problems. Be led by your dreams. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Nature provides exceptions to every rule. Margaret Fuller

Place yourself in the middle of the stream of power and wisdom which animates all whom it floats, and you are without effort impelled to truth, to right and a perfect contentment. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Not for nothing one face, one character, one fact makes much impression on him, and another none. Ralph Waldo Emerson

There are always difficulties arising that tempt you to believe your critics are right. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Iron rusts from disuse; water loses its purity from stagnation… even so does inaction sap the vigor of the mind. Leonardo da Vinci

In actual life it requires the greatest discipline to be simple, and the acceptance of oneself is the essence of the moral problem and the epitome of a whole outlook upon life. Carl Jung

Many men go fishing all of their lives without knowing that it is not fish they are after. Henry David Thoreau

To be one, to be united is a great thing. But to respect the right to be different is maybe even greater. Bono

Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of your own mind. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Allow yourself to trust joy and embrace it. You will find you dance with everything. Emerson

If you have knowledge, let others light their candles in it. Margaret Fuller

When Nature has work to be done, she creates a genius to do it. Emerson

It is easy in the world to live after the world’s opinion; it is easy in solitude to live after our own; but the great man is he who in the midst of the crowd keeps with perfect sweetness the independence of solitude. Ralph Waldo Emerson

I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practise resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms. Henry David Thoreau

I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life. Henry David Thoreau

To be great is to be misunderstood. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Allow yourself to trust joy and embrace it. You will find you dance with everything. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Time is but the stream I go a-fishing in. I drink at it; but while I drink I see the sandy bottom and detect how shallow it is. Henry David Thoreau

Every man is the builder of a temple called his body. Henry David Thoreau

Far away there in the sunshine are my highest aspirations. I may not reach them, but I can look up and see their beauty, believe in them, and try to follow where they lead. Louisa May Alcott

Children are born innocent. Before they are domesticated they live in the moment, love without fear, and don’t even think about the opinions of others. Miguel Angel Ruiz

Whoso would be a man must be a nonconformist. Ralph Waldo Emerson

In wildness is the preservation of the world. Henry David Thoreau

Man seeks to change the foods available in nature to suit his tastes, thereby putting an end to the very essence of life contained in them. Sai Baba”Man seeks to change the foods available in nature to suit his tastes, thereby putting an end to the very essence of life contained in them. Sai Baba

We should not let our response to the people who disagree with us be dictated by what they say about us or even how they treat people we care for. There has to be a chance that we can find love. William J. Clinton

Self-trust is the first secret to success. Ralph Waldo Emerson

This whole earth in which we inhabit is but a point is space. Henry David Thoreau

In most books, the I, or first person, is omitted; in this it will be retained; that, in respect to egotism, is the main difference. Henry David Thoreau

Transcendentalism is, we might say, an early form of anarchism. The Transcendentalists also did not call themselves anarchists, but there are anarchist ideas in their thinking and in their literature. They were all suspicious of authority. We might say that the Transcendentalism played a role in creating an atmosphere of skepticism towards authority, towards government. Howard Zinn

Every man is the builder of a temple called his body. Henry David Thoreau

That government is best which governs least. Henry David Thoreau

You cannot do a kindness too soon, for you never know how soon it will be too late. Ralph Waldo Emerson

In absolute incommunicableness it stood apart, a thought, a system of thought which as yet had no symbol in spoken language. Fitz Hugh Ludlow

Very early, I knew that the only object in life was to grow. Margaret Fuller

If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them. Henry David Thoreau

I dream of a better tomorrow, where chickens can cross the road and not be questioned about their motives. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Painting is the representation of visible forms. The essence of realism is its negation of the ideal. Gustave Courbet

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