~Henry David Thoreau
In the first chapter; Education, Thoreau discusses his experience with education, and how one can educate himself more than others can educate him. "To my astonishment I was informed on leaving college that I had studied navigation!-why, if I had taken one turn down the harbor I should have know more about it." What Thoreau is trying to say is that the easiest and best education is when you go outside and experience it head on; when you are forced to make discoveries, and to learn about something in order to succeed. I believe that this rings true today. Education is still vital to humanity, but there needs to be more hands on education. Fenn does a great job of this, but I know of many schools that do not. People are most intrigued by what they can see and touch, and less animostic about learning when what they need to learn is at their fingertips.
The following chapter, Money and Work, is about the true necessity of money in one's life, and the stupidity of labor in order to become rich. As Thoreau states in Necessities and in Clothing and Shelter, those who have 'accumulated dross' are the most impoverished class of all. His main point in this chapter is that one should only work to make enough money to live off of, and that person will be the happiest one. Also stated in this chapter is that it is rewarding to 'experience' nature at first hand. "And so, if the railroad reached around the world, I think that I should keep ahead of you; and as for seeing the country and getting experience of that kind, I should have cut your acquaintance all together." Thoreau, who was extremely parsimonious, is saying that it is important to save money when possible, and spend it on things that are vital in one's life. I agree with what Thoreau has to say in Money and Work. I believe that it is vital to practice saving up your money, and allocating it the correct way; however, I must disagree with his point about only working for the necessary amount of money, and leaving the rest of your time to be free. I say this because nowadays, more than ever, money is key in order to survive, and everything has gotten so expensive: food, water, supplies, and more, and one must have a little bit of extra money for their endeavors; on the contrary, money isn't the key to happiness.
After all; "to maintain one's self on this earth is not a hardship but a pastime."