What specific situation is he referring, and what personal examples can you give to illustrate the validity of his statement?"Thus we never see the true state of our condition till it is...

What specific situation is he referring, and what personal examples can you give to illustrate the validity of his statement?

"Thus we never see the true state of our condition till it is illustrated to us by its contraries, nor know how to value what we enjoy but by the want of it"

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pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The specific situation he is talking about here is that he has been, he thinks, swept out to sea in his boat.  He had made the boat so as to be able to get off the island, but now he is off the island and is becalmed.  He is afraid he will starve to death.

He says that this shows that we never really appreciate how good we have it until we are put in a different situation -- then you wish you had things back the way they were.  It's like the old saying, "you never miss the water until the well runs dry."

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Robinson Crusoe

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