Self-Reliance

Self-Reliance, you may be aware, was published by Ralph Waldo Emerson in 1841. Last Wednesday (on his 208th birthday), the Domino Project released a very special copy of Emerson’s essay.

Self-Reliance, Ralph Waldo Emerson (The Domino Project)

You might not be familiar with this text — I wasn’t, until fairly recently. It’s not the sort of thing we’re used to reading, but there’s a reason it’s widely renowned. It’s really, really good.

Self-Reliance says, Avoid conformity. It says, Avoid false consistency. Self-Reliance says, Look to yourself for the cue, follow your own instincts, act on your own ideas. It’s pure poetry and solid inspiration; it’s worth keeping on your favorite bookshelf (or on your nightstand).

The Domino Project hasn’t just re-released this text. In a way, it’s revived and recreated it. If Emerson feels a little too old-timey for you, this is exactly the copy you’ll want to read. Throughout the book, Emerson’s passages on Self-Reliance are interspersed with quotes from names you’ll recognize: Mark Frauenfelder, Chris Guillebeau, Steven Pressfield, Pam Slim, Pace and Kyeli Smith, Colleen Wainwright. Their commentary makes Emerson more readable than you would have imagined — and infinitely inspiring.

Appropriate to the content, the design of this book is shockingly beautiful.

Self-Reliance, Ralph Waldo Emerson (The Domino Project) Self-Reliance, Ralph Waldo Emerson (The Domino Project) Self-Reliance, Ralph Waldo Emerson (The Domino Project)

Today, the Dominoes launched a new project based on Self-Reliance: #Trust30. I’ve already signed up, and so should you. Write your responses publicly, on your blog — or write them privately, to yourself. But pay attention to the still small voice inside, and let it lead you where you need to go. The prompts, I suspect, will be as delectable as the book itself.

Pick up Self-Reliance, and get on the #Trust30 list.

Some things are very, very worth doing.

More posts about Self-Reliance: