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Analysis Essay —Annie Dillard “seeing” 5-6pagesTask: write an analysis of how Dillard, in her essay, explores a variety of ways for what it means to see, both literally(the natural obvious) and figuratively (the artificial obvious), and how she connects and builds from them through out her essay so that by the end of the essay she comes to a realization about a kind of seeing that is more visionary than it is biological or neurological.• Very important: your task is analyze what Dillard says and how she says it (and how everything is interrelated)—and not what you think she says or how you feel about what she says. You need to provide a clear connection between the points and observations she makes in her essay.• Do not write from the perspective that Dillard is trying to show us how to see or how to better enjoy our lives or be happy. Dillard is writing about her thoughts and experiences. You are analyzing that so write from that perspective.You must also include a process letter,in which you write about your writing process for the essay. Please make this the first page of your document.MLA format Please do not use other reference from internet
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Sample of Essay One – Emerson
William Fitzgerald
English 1A
Mr. Nathan
The Transparent I
In the first section of his essay Nature, transcendentalist writer Ralph Waldo Emerson writes
about experiencing an intense, mystical-like connection with the natural world, one that simultaneously
connects him to God. Transcendentalism, overall, is very difficult to define because many of its writers
held differing and often opposing ideas; however, most shared the view that God was present in
humanity and nature. Emerson felt quite emphatically he could experience life more truly in nature than
in civilization, and, in his essay, he writes about the reverence and awe one can have for nature if one’s
mind is open to the influence of such things— so much so that he connects the awe we might have for the
brilliant, shining stars in the nighttime sky to the awe we can have for natural things in our world down
below those stars. By doing so, Emerson expresses his belief that the God he reveres so much in the
unreachable stars can be experienced in and through the beauty and awe of nature experienced down
here on earth.  underlined sentences = thesis for the essay
Emerson begins by offering his readers the conditions necessary to find the quality of solitude
that allows one to find a very deep and personal connection with nature and, ultimately, God: “To go into
solitude, a man needs to retire as much from his chamber as from society” (6). One should note that
Emerson specifically indicates the necessity to leave both his connections with home and the society that
his home is located in; in fact, he indicates the need to sever his ties from others even further by realizing
that being physically alone, being at home without anyone else around, is not necessarily enough, for
even when he reads and writes in solitude he is still connected with those whose thoughts he might read
and for those whom he might write. To best find the truest sense of the solitary, he explains, one should
look to the brilliance of the heavens and its many stars, for this is how one can feel truly disconnected
from the rest of the world. The stars, Emerson writes, “will separate” man “between him and what he
touches” (6). In other words, those who look to the brilliance of the stars will see something filled with
such immensity they will feel a sense of awe that separates them from all that is material, all that is
touchable, and, as a result, leave them to feel alone and solitary in the face of such grandeur. But the
stars are not just beautiful. They also fill one with the sense of the sublime, a word which not only
describes the sheer beauty and grandeur of the lights that fill the night but also indicates the power of the
stars, a power and intensity that elicits veneration and respect and awe and, thus, a touch of uneasiness.
That fear, that respect, that reverence, is essential to understanding what Emerson wishes to
communicate because the heavens in all their vastness and mystery are, in his words, “the city of God”
(7). So, in the end, Emerson is equating the intensity of this quality of solitude he seeks with the intensity
of connecting with God, but, at this point, God is high in the heavens and out of his reach.
Next, he shifts from the reverence and awe one might feel for the stars to reverence for the
many facets of nature down here on earth, writing that that the stars are “inaccessible,” that we can
never touch them and that, in the end, this is an essential part of the reason why they “awaken a certain
reverence” (7)— “awaken” implying our senses and spirit have been asleep or dulled and that through
this experience those inactive senses are stirred up, excited, and aroused. And this is precisely where
Emerson associates that same awakening, that same awe, that same reverence for the majesty of the
nighttime sky with all and any “natural objects” (7), the phrase “kindred impression” (7) connecting the
stars to all “natural objects” (all of which we can touch, unlike the stars, if we choose). “Kindred”
denotes there is a definite similarity between the stars and the natural objects of the earth, but even
though they are not the same, they do, in a sense, come from the same natural origin (the “Universal
Being”). “Impression” indicates the effect something has on the mind, the conscience, and one’s feelings.
So, when combined in this context, these two words indicate, once again, that Emerson is drawing a
connection between the intensity and awe we hold for the stars and the awe and reverence that we
might have for any natural object, but, for this to happen, the mind must be “open to their influence” (7).
“Influence” is the key word here, for it indicates that experiencing these natural objects and surroundings
can affect one’s moods and feelings, that one can experience the same awe for the stars in the entirety of
nature if one is open to seeing that influence, that, ultimately, nature is as grand and awe-inspiring as
those stars (and, by connection, one can also experience God in and through nature).
11 | P a g e
Emerson then shifts to explaining how the wise person— i.e., the person whose mind is open to
the influence of nature— recognizes that nature does not act meanly, that nature is not a trivial toy to be
played with, that nature never ceases to amaze and intrigue the person who experiences it, and, perhaps
most importantly, the truly wise person realizes the best moments experiencing nature as an adult return
one to the wonder which childhood was often filled with, to a time before the experiences of being an
adult deadened and dulled the innocence and curiosity of childhood experiences in nature. In other
words, one of the deepest consequences of opening one’s mind to the influence of nature is that it
awakens, in part, some of that lost wonder of our childhood. Emerson then connects this reawakened
mind to a most poetical sense of how we see things. To see things poetically is to see them as they are
and not in an analytical or purely functional way; the poet sees nature in its entirety and not by its
material divisions. He offers the example of the woodcutter— who sees a tree only for its potential
materials— and the poet, who sees the tree for what it is: as a whole tree with all the beauty one might
associate with a tree. He describes a walk through a variety of farms and woods, in which he sees all
these parcels of individually-owned land as one landscape and not a landscape divided by ownership.
The poetically-awakened mind realizes one can possess a deed to some land, but one can never own the
landscape, the view, the experience.
And it is this poetical sense of mind that Emerson sees through when he later goes for a walk in
the woods at twilight. The poetically-minded individual is the one whose mind, heart, spirit and eyes,
“whose inward and outward senses,” are “still truly adjusted to each other; who has retained the spirit of
infancy even into the era of manhood” (7). Indeed, the “lover of nature,” as Emerson refers to it, sees
nature not only with the eyes but with a curiosity and exhilaration that has not been deadened, one that
can continually be reawakened. Indeed, as he takes his walk, he feels a perfect exhilaration and his
senses are filled with delight, recognizing that every season brings its own delights and reactions and that,
very importantly, one can feel a sense of excitement even when one feels sad. For Emerson, experiencing
nature is like a ritual, one that offers him an opportunity to communicate with both the heavens and the
earth, for God can be found— if one’s mind is open to such influence, to such awe and reverence— in
both those celestial stars he discusses at the beginning of the essay and the natural world that he is now
taking a walk in. He recognizes that a man (woman) can “cast off his years” and “what period soever of
life” be always a child (7). So, before he describes the very intense connection with the natural world that
he is about to have, Emerson once again connects the feeling of childhood wonder and the awe of nature
that can be found if one’s mind is open to their influence. In fact, this connection is so intense he likens it
to a “perennial festival,” which implies that a walk of this kind is very similar to a ritual one might
experience in a church, but, in this case, no building is necessary, for nature, itself, is the place of worship,
the place of ritual. He also takes the reader back to the beginning of the essay by saying that a person
would never tire of this ritual in even a thousand years, which brings us back to how even more intense
the stars in the night sky would be if they only appeared every thousand years. But, in this case, he states
that one would never tire of what is clearly there, what can be clearly touched.
And it is in this state of “perfect exhilaration” that one returns to reason and faith, these words
being essential because, for the transcendentalists, the spiritual and the scientific were never in
competition with one another. They generally believed that the world could be understood through
spiritual intuition, but they also accepted scientific doctrine. For some, this might be difficult to
understand— especially since he is about to speak about his very deep, mystical connection with nature in
exceptionally poetic terms— but that poetic outlook is exactly what fuels his direct experience. It may be
poetic, but it is also reasoned through a connection to what is there, to what he sees in terms of what it
actually is. And with this focused attention on his surroundings, he then writes about the intensity of his
connection to both the natural landscape and God:
There I feel that nothing can befall me in life, — no disgrace, no calamity, (leaving
me my eyes,) which nature cannot repair. Standing on the bare ground, — my
head bathed by the blithe air, and uplifted into infinite space, — all mean
egotism vanishes. I become a transparent eye-ball; I am nothing; I see all; the
currents of the Universal Being circulate through me; I am part or particle of God
(7).
At first glance, Emerson’s words seem to suggest an almost hallucinatory experience, but when one
considers the reverence, the childhood wonder, and the most poetical sense of mind that he has already
introduced us to, one can see the absolute delight and awe he has for such an intense experience, a
moment of experience in which he fully absorbs his surroundings, the intensity of the connection itself
12 | P a g e
being what instructs and connects him. Indeed, he speaks in mystical terms, in a connection through
which he purely experiences the moment itself as if he is there, but not there, and, in that state, connects
with God. In this perennially festive moment, he lets the self, the “mean egotism” go, and it is as if he
joins, in that moment, the same “infinite space” where one would find the stars and the “city of God,” as
if he has bridged the “intercourse with heaven and earth” (7). To be transparent is to be opaque, as if you
are there but cannot be seen. One might also think of a substance like water which is sheer and allows
light to shine through, as if in those moments the light of everything in the universe, viz., the “Universal
Being,” radiate through him thus allowing him to absorb everything in his surroundings. The “eye,” the
organ through which we see, can also be seen as a pun on the personal pronoun “I,” which connects this
experience to the self, and, as a result, the self, the “I,” is also made transparent and one then becomes
nothing, as if one is no longer there, and then becomes a “part” of God or a minute particle of God, both
indicating that he has connected and become part of nature and part of God. At the very least, one sees
the absolute intensity by which he finds this connection, one that is bound to reverence, to wonder, and
to a most distinctly poetical sense of mind.
He ends this first section of Nature by pointing out that nature itself does not provide the
emotional connection. It is man who connects in this way—and he calls it a “higher thought” or “better
emotion,” both suggesting that one must, again, be open to such influences. For, after all, one could go
for a walk in the woods and feel nothing but boredom, for it is the mood of the individual that sets the
experience. Earlier, he said that nature “never wears a mean appearance” and he ends with the
observation that nature “always wears the color of the spirit” (7). Indeed, in order to experience what he
experiences, to connect to the “spirit” of God in and through nature, one must, again, be open to the
influence of natural things—in the same way the stars awaken the mind and heart to reverence in the
face of such experiences. Moreover, the person who sees things in this way sees things in a decidedly
poetic sense of mind, one that sees the actual of things but, at the same time, connects on a much deeper
and more mystical and divine level. And, finally, one who sees in this way reconnects with the same
delight that many children have when running around freely and curiously in nature, but, quite
importantly, one does this with the eyes of an adult, the experiences of an adult and the moods and
feelings of an adult. But, again, one must be open to such possibilities, such influences.
———————————————————————————————————————
13 | P a g e
Sample of Essay One – Emerson
William Fitzgerald
English 1A
Mr. Nathan
The Transparent I
In the first section of his essay Nature, transcendentalist writer Ralph Waldo Emerson writes
about experiencing an intense, mystical-like connection with the natural world, one that simultaneously
connects him to God. Transcendentalism, overall, is very difficult to define because many of its writers
held differing and often opposing ideas; however, most shared the view that God was present in
humanity and nature. Emerson felt quite emphatically he could experience life more truly in nature than
in civilization, and, in his essay, he writes about the reverence and awe one can have for nature if one’s
mind is open to the influence of such things— so much so that he connects the awe we might have for the
brilliant, shining stars in the nighttime sky to the awe we can have for natural things in our world down
below those stars. By doing so, Emerson expresses his belief that the God he reveres so much in the
unreachable stars can be experienced in and through the beauty and awe of nature experienced down
here on earth.  underlined sentences = thesis for the essay
Emerson begins by offering his readers the conditions necessary to find the quality of solitude
that allows one to find a very deep and personal connection with nature and, ultimately, God: “To go into
solitude, a man needs to retire as much from his chamber as from society” (6). One should note that
Emerson specifically indicates the necessity to leave both his connections with home and the society that
his home is located in; in fact, he indicates the need to sever his ties from others even further by realizing
that being physically alone, being at home without anyone else around, is not necessarily enough, for
even when he reads and writes in solitude he is still connected with those whose thoughts he might read
and for those whom he might write. To best find the truest sense of the solitary, he explains, one should
look to the brilliance of the heavens and its many stars, for this is how one can feel truly disconnected
from the rest of the world. The stars, Emerson writes, “will separate” man “between him and what he
touches” (6). In other words, those who look to the brilliance of the stars will see something filled with
such immensity they will feel a sense of awe that separates them from all that is material, all that is
touchable, and, as a result, leave them to feel alone and solitary in the face of such grandeur. But the
stars are not just beautiful. They also fill one with the sense of the sublime, a word which not only
describes the sheer beauty and grandeur of the lights that fill the night but also indicates the power of the
stars, a power and intensity that elicits veneration and respect and awe and, thus, a touch of uneasiness.
That fear, that respect, that reverence, is essential to understanding what Emerson wishes to
communicate because the heavens in all their vastness and mystery are, in his words, “the city of God”
(7). So, in the end, Emerson is equating the intensity of this quality of solitude he seeks with the intensity
of connecting with God, but, at this point, God is high in the heavens and out of his reach.
Next, he shifts from the reverence and awe one might feel for the stars to reverence for the
many facets of nature down here on earth, writing that that the stars are “inaccessible,” that we can
never touch them and that, in the end, this is an essential part of the reason why they “awaken a certain
reverence” (7)— “awaken” implying our senses and spirit have been asleep or dulled and that through
this experience those inactive senses are stirred up, excited, and aroused. And this is precisely where
Emerson associates that same awakening, that same awe, that same reverence for the majesty of the
nighttime sky with all and any “natural objects” (7), the phrase “kindred impression” (7) connecting the
stars to all “natural objects” (all of which we can touch, unlike the stars, if we choose). “Kindred”
denotes there is a definite similarity between the stars and the natural objects of the earth, but even
though they are not the same, they do, in a sense, come from the same natural origin (the “Universal
Being”). “Impression” indicates the effect something has on the mind, the conscience, and one’s feelings.
So, when combined in this context, these two words indicate, once again, that Emerson is drawing a
connection between the intensity and awe we hold for the stars and the awe and reverence that we
might have for any natural object, but, for this to happen, the mind must be “open to their influence” (7).
“Influence” is the key word here, for it indicates that experiencing these natural objects and surroundings
can affect one’s moods and feelings, that one can experience the same awe for the stars in the entirety of
nature if one is open to seeing that influence, that, ultimately, nature is as grand and awe-inspiring as
those stars (and, by connection, one can also experience God in and through nature).
11 | P a g e
Emerson then shifts to explaining how the wise person— i.e., the person whose mind is open to
the influence of nature— recognizes that nature does not act meanly, that nature is not a trivial toy to be
played with, that nature never ceases to amaze and intrigue the person who experiences it, and, perhaps
most importantly, the truly wise person realizes the best moments experiencing nature as an adult return
one to the wonder which childhood was often filled with, to a time before the experiences of being an
adult deadened and dulled the innocence and curiosity of childhood experiences in nature. In other
words, one of the deepest consequences of opening one’s mind to the influence of nature is that it
awakens, in part, some of that lost wonder of our childhood. Emerson then connects this reawakened
mind to a most poetical sense of how we see things. To see things poetically is to see them as they are
and not in an analytical or purely functional way; the poet sees nature in its entirety and not by its
material divisions. He offers the example of the woodcutter— who sees a tree only for its potential
materials— and the poet, who sees …
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