The idea for the name “The Grand Necessity” originally came from the work of Henry David Thoreau. Thoreau was a philosopher, nature writer, and tree observer (among other things). His most well known work Walden describes a segment of his life he spent living in simplicity next to a pond named “Walden” in Concord, Massachusetts. During his two year stay at Walden Pond, Thoreau explored what it meant to live with the utmost necessity. He built a house himself, ate food he grew himself, and lived with only a few meager possessions. Thoreau felt he was living in a world that was changing too rapidly for it’s own good. He felt people were missing out on what was most valuable in life.  Thoreau writes on the most basic of human needs, “The grand necessity then, for our bodies, is to keep warm, to keep the vital heat in us.” It is clear to me that everyone deserves to keep warm, to keep the heat inside of us. We need it in all aspects of life, not just physically. Each individual has the opportunity to explore, in their own way, what keeps him/her warm, to discover what meets their deepest needs—to find the grand necessity of their body, minds, and souls.

The goal of The Grand Necessity is to help you find your own warmth. To inspire you to live as Thoreau did at Walden Pond (don’t worry, not literally), that is to say, to search for a life that is, at the foundation, simply what you value most. Everything else should be an extension of those values. The pages of this site are not designed to be a statement of truth, they are not a fool-proof plan for a happier life. They are a great experiment, ideas and concepts that have worked for some (myself included) to find a simpler, more valuable life. I hope you take the time to  explore these pages, maybe find a few things that resonate with you. When you do, I hope you share it with others, so that they too, might discover a little more of their own Grand Necessity.


Walden Pond, Concord MA

“The scenery of Walden is on a humble scale, and, though very beautiful, does not approach to grandeur, nor can it much concern one who has not long frequented it or lived by its shore; yet this pond is so remarkable…”—Henry David Thoreau