Transcendentalism was a series of new ideas that flourished among writers and philosophers in New England during the 19th century. The concept of transcendentalism was a state of being that was beyond the reach or comprehension of experience. These ideas centered on a belief in the essential unity of all creation, an innate goodness of man, and the supremacy of insight over logic.

The original concepts of transcendentalism came from Europe, but were also influenced by old Indian texts such as the Upanishads and the Bhagavad-Gita, Chinese ideas of Confucius, the teachings of Buddha, and work by the Muslim Sufis. Henry David Thoreau (1817–62) paid much tribute to the ideas that came from Vedic thought.

These traditions were merged with Platonism and Neoplatonism by British writers such ...

  • Loading...
locked icon

Sign in to access this content

Get a 30 day FREE TRIAL

  • Watch videos from a variety of sources bringing classroom topics to life
  • Read modern, diverse business cases
  • Explore hundreds of books and reference titles