I wished to acquire the simplicity, native feelings, and virtues of savage life; to divest myself of the factitious habits, prejudices and imperfections of civilization…and to find, amidst the solitude and grandeur of the western wilds, more correct views of human nature and of the true interests of man. the season of snows was preferred, that I might experience the pleasure of suffering, and the novelty of danger.
A Pedestrious Tour, of Four Thousand Miles,
Through the Western States and Territories,
During the Winter and Spring of 1818.
Rather than love, than money, than fame, give me truth. I sat at a table where were rich food and wine in abundance, an obsequious attendance, but sincerity and truth were not; and I went away hungry from the inhospitable board. the hospitality was as cold as the ices.
Henry David Thoreau, Walden
To the desert go prophets and hermits; through deserts go pilgrims and exiles. here the leaders of the great religions have sought the therapeutic and spiritual values of retreat, not to escape but to find reality.
Paul Shepard, Man in the Landscape: A Historic View of the Esthetics of Nature
Fear not death, for the sooner we die the longer we shall be immortal.
A man is not completely born until he is dead.