Ike sees south as a ‘fallen Eden’ because of ‘Man’s original sin of trying to own and tame the land, a sin of which slavery forms only a part’ (Meeter, 288). ‘Killing the bear and the wilderness he represents is for Ike the same “Cause” as the war to perpetuate slavery’ and the ‘destruction of Ben and the wilderness’ is succeeded by ‘gloom’ and sadness (Meeter, 289). Thoreau in his book, Walden, ‘forged a thought-out way of life, a philosophy that insists that the individual turn not to the state, not to the gods, not to society, or even to history for a guide to life, but to nature and to self’ (Richardson).
Thoreau’s being alone in nature does not imply that he was cut off from the society, but he was more social in the lonely woods than in civilization as he wrote in the chapter, ‘Visitors’, ‘I had more visitors while I lived in the woods than at any other period in my life’ (Thoreau). Thoreau asks in Walden as ‘What sort of space is that which separates a man from his fellows and makes him solitary?’ and it is not ‘exertion of legs’ that brings ‘two minds much nearer to one another’ (Thoreau). Ike is also associated with the nature as soon as he enters the woods. He remains committed to nature as in his final journey to camp he calls a huge rattlesnake his ‘grandfather’ which comes as a denunciation of McCaslins and reaffirmation of matrimony with the nature.
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