"It is fitting that some report should be made of the influences that have shaped the national mind, and determined in any important degree or respect its intellectual and moral character. A well-considered account of these influences would be of very great value to the student of history, the statesman and philosopher, not merely as throwing light on our own social problem, but as illustrating the general law of human progress. Transcendentalism, as it is called, the transcendental movement, was an important factor in American life, and this book is offered as a modest contribution to that knowledge. Though local in activity, limited in scope, brief in duration, engaging but a comparatively small number of individuals, and passing over the upper regions of the mind, it left a broad and deep trace on ideas and institutions. Sufficient references are given for the direction of students who may wish to become more intimately acquainted with the transcendental philosophy, but an exhaustive survey of the speculative field has not been attempted. This book has but one purpose--to define the fundamental ideas of the philosophy, to trace them to their historical and speculative sources, and to show whither they tended"--Preface. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2010 APA, all rights reserved).