Renee Silvus

Live Like Thoreau, Yogic Influences

Long before moving to Walden Pond, Thoreau was steeped in the Bhavagavad Gita and other Eastern scriptures.  He read the Vishnu Purana while revising Walden.  When he was just 21, he journals that “if with closed ears and eyes I consult consciousness for a moment…earth rolls from under me, and I float….eternity and space gamboling familiarly through my depths.” Those are the words of an advanced meditator who never attended a yoga class or meditation retreat. With this, how may we deepen our understanding and appreciation of Thoreau and his legacy?  We’ll look at passages from the Gita and Walden to discover yogic ethics and observances evident in Thoreau’s philosophies.