Dear Charles Darwin,

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Hello, I have recently read your theory on natural
selection and the Origin of Species. Although each of us
approach life differently, for example your ambition being on
a different level than mine and your formal learning more
than I feel is needed, I admire how much you have learned
from nature.

I say that if one advances confidently in the direction of
his dreams and endeavors to live the life which he has
imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common
hours. Although you weren’t a prominent scientist, you took
on the challenge of learning from nature, that which what
others have not. You didn’t go on a scientific expedition or
live like all the other scientists, instead you boarded the
boat, H.M.S. Beagle, and brought with you only the
necessities. You learned more as an individual on that trip
than most scientists do with all their intricate tools. I, like
you, gave up luxuries at a point in my life in order to live
deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see
if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not , when I
came to die, to discover that I had not lived.

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Following the advice of my friend Emerson, I, like you,
went out and experienced nature as a transparent eyeball,
observing as much as I could. I noticed the Pickerel under the
ice in the pond, I never pondered the possibility of the
different kinds of Pickerel to be originated from the same
species. When you were observing nature in the Galapagos
Islands, you saw all the different types of plants and animals
and postulated that some of the different species of each
came from a single ancestor.

Emerson, whom I mentioned previously, says,”Great
geniuses have the shortest biographies. Their cousins can tell
you nothing about them,” I believe that to be true in your
case. You didn’t do much in terms of accomplishments and
kept your accounts on the tip of your finger. But your
accomplishments that I can assume from your writings are
astounding for you analization of nature. You achieved much
within your mind. It is not the fact that imports, but the
impression or effect of that fact on the mind.
Your ideas have affected many people. Contraversies
have arisen from religious people who strongly oppose the
idea of evolution because it conflicts with their religious
beliefs; yet also, it has affected others who believe in your
theories or take them into perspective by changing their
religious thoughts from blind faith to questioned faith. Unlike
conformist, you went in a direction that differed from what
was okay being taught in the institutions of Christ. You
decided not to just study nature in forms of reference books
but, instead you went out to experience it. Although I do not
totally agree with the way you lived your life, I applaud you
on your accomplishments. Besides, if your followed
everything that I think is right and took the beliefs that I
hold that would not allow you to be your own person and be
self reliant.

Henry David Thoreau


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