Chris Mc Candless: A Transcendentalist Essay

975 words - 4 pages

From generation to generation, society has been influenced by many types of literary work left behind by different transcendentalists. Chris McCandless was a young man with a unique perception of his surroundings. McCandless shaped his ideologies and beliefs around many transcendentalists’s thinking and applied them into his daily life in the search of true self enlightenment.
One of McCandless’ literary heroes was Henry David Thoreau, author of many books like Walden and Civil Disobedience. Along with many of Chris’ books, Walden, a book about reflection of simple living immersed in nature, was found among his belongings giving people a better inner understanding to Chris’ mind. “Rather than love, than money, than fame, give me truth”(Chaper 18, Walden); this passage was highlighted in Chris’ copy of the book in which he wrote “TRUTH” on top of it. These words represent the morals he preached and practiced. The “truth” for him was an answer he wanted to know to uncover his purpose in life. The truth of life and existence is only achievable through personal satisfaction of goals and breaking away from the expectations of society. Chris was not one to stand by and let society define his path instead he took control of his own destiny and found his own “truth”.
If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. By doing so, men may find happiness and self-fulfillment (Walden)
Chris understood that materialism doesn’t create real happiness and satisfaction. One can see this idea reflect on Chris’ life when he gives up the conformity of his home to go out to the wild. He gives away his possessions, something society values too much . He gives his money to charity and burns the money he has left in his wallet. (Chapter 4, Into the Wild) In this way making a statement that he rejects the social views and values of property in the search of a higher purpose within nature.
“Jack London is King,” was carved out in a tree by Chris proving his admiration of the author as a person and writer. Jack London wrote personal experiences about human survival and individualism in nature. Chris wanted to explore who he was as an individual and how he was to live the rest of his life out in the wild. Jack London’s The Call of the Wild was a story of a dog named Buck who is taken away to the wilderness of Alaska and becomes close to John Thornton,a man of nature.
John Thornton asked little of man or nature. He was unafraid of the wild. With a handful of salt and a rifle he could plunge into the wilderness and fare wherever he pleased and as long as he pleased (The Call of the Wild)
Throughout these...

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