“Most of the luxuries, and many of the so-called comforts of life, are not only not indispensable, but positive hindrances to the elevation of mankind”
Today, the words need, and want, are used so interchangeably, that it is hard for people to distinguish one from the other.Throughout the entirety of Economy, the first chapter of Walden, by Henry David Thoreau, the question arises; What do we really need? Throughout the entirety of Economy, the first chapter of Walden, by Henry David Thoreau, the question arises; What do we really need? Thoreau had proven that you could live very comfortably off the bare essentials, but in ;todays world, the temptation of luxuries are hard to resist. Even in the midst of luxuries almost being handed out, these improvements of life, so to speak, may just be taking away from our experience as human beings on earth. A specific section of Economy proposed a very interesting opinion to what a necessary item is. In it, Thoreau states that there is no better view of society and excessive need than from those who are living off exactly as they need, by choice.“None can be an impartial or wise observer of human life but from the vantage ground of what we should call voluntary poverty” Here Thoreau is emphasizing the importance of seeing the luxuries as additions to daily life and not needed; he is telling us that you can only truly see that ridiculousness of luxury from a position where you don't use them. He uses his own experience in voluntary poverty to prove it. Although the modern day population is surrounded with unneeded items. It is important to know, what is necessary to you.