Ralph Waldo EmersonRalph Waldo Emerson, (1803-1882) American essayist, lecturer, and poet

Ralph Waldo Emerson Quote

“Man exists for his own sake and not to add a laborer to the State.”

Ralph Waldo EmersonRalph Waldo Emerson
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Journal, 1839

Ratings and Comments

Washington, DC

Hear, hear!

John-Douglas, Nassau

Which came first? Man or the state? The state is the invention of man. And, just like Frankenstein turned on his inventor, so the state is the most dangerous weapon of mass destruction now in use against mankind. And its frontline users are the bureaucrats and politicians - and those who control them behind the scenes greasing the skids for the average citizen. Hello there Five Sisters!

Odette, Kendall

Ah, the passionate defiance of the State's hold on man. Yes, Emerson is right in his belief that man (and woman) are autonomous in their own right, but sadly he does not realize our unfortunate link to the State and its laws. Still, I've known Emerson's words for so long, and therefore choose his fight for the supremacy of the omnipotent I !!!!!!! The State may seem to make us its servants, but intrinsically we own ourselves, and that right can NEVER be infringed upon!!!!

Yndrd1984, Ames, IA

Anonymous, why the thumbs down?

Ed, Hillsborough, NC

A breath of fresh air for my heart.

Warrdoc, Elk Grove,CA.

We are our own person but, we are being seduced and a whore is not worth her salt unless she can seduce her master.

jim k, Austin

Perhaps Anonymous wants to be a "laborer to the State".

Bob Leavitt, Charlotte, VT

Clear and succinct, which is its truth and beauty.

E Archer, NYC

Get this, and you are half way there.

Mike, Norwalk

We hold this truth to be self evident unless, your religious perspective is that the Borg is supreme or that government is god.

Cal, Lewisville, TX

Easy to see why Anonymous remains anonymous.

Robert, Somewhere in the US

If Emerson was alive today that statement would be very different. Perhaps he would replace "state" for "Plutocrats".

Patrick Henry, Red Hill

As Thomas Paine expressed it:

"Government, like dress, is the badge of lost innocence; the palaces of kings are built on the bowers of the ruins of paradise."

Temporal governmental and corporate hierarchies are essentially loveless, thus parasitic, by their unnatural natures.

Robert, Somewhere in the US

Sorry, I forgot to add, there is no State anymore - we are ruled by the deep state and if you don't know what that is or represents then do your home work. The political system is now just a sham. Corruption is rampant in government and the boardrooms of America. Obama, though he threw a few bones to the people, was a Manchurian Candidate, and was able to pass republican policies because he was a democrat.

Fredrick William Sillik, Anytown

Humans realizes that what is good for them is good for the community, and what is good for the community is good for them.

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ABBY    7/20/23

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