Selected Writings of Ralph Waldo Emerson - The Over-Soul Summary & Analysis

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The Over-Soul Summary and Analysis

The oversoul is the essence of human consciousness, of spirituality, of an indwelling sense of God, according to Emerson. In this essay, Emerson slips into his clerical robe and delivers a sermon on transcendentalism. Man only sees pieces of the divine spirit in glimpses, but enough to arouse his soul and the desire for a greater unity with the oversoul and with all of humanity. Indeed, "man is the facade of a temple wherein all wisdom and good abide" although his physical manifestation often misrepresents what it means to be human, Emerson says.

Humankind is bound by physical, natural and societal laws but the soul is limitless and free to rise above the petty circumstances of daily life and to merge with the universal spirit—in himself, in other humans and in nature. The soul is not bounded...

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This section contains 265 words
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Buy the Selected Writings of Ralph Waldo Emerson Study Guide
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