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Tag / Philosophy

The Best Book for Learning How To Live

A Guide To The Good Life: The Art of Stoic Joy By William Irvine Rating: 10/10 Best Line #1: What do you want out of life? Best Line #2: Yoga has been a wonderful source of voluntary discomfort. This marks the second book I’ve featured by the author and professor William Irvine. The first was […]

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Goal Cessation

Buddhist traditions recognize that desire and ignorance are the origin of suffering. Stoic tradition recognizes this too. These arguments are quite durable, having maintained relevance for centuries, and the author William Irvine uses the teachings of both schools to reach a very clear, obvious truth in his book The Guide To The Good Life: We […]

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How To Stop Feeling Numb

The term stoic is defined as “a person who can endure pain and hardship without showing their feelings or complaining.” By this typical usage, the idea of a stoic philosophy suggests a way of thinking that leads people to quash their feelings altogether. Philosophy has that effect regardless. After all, the topic is quite dry […]

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Strengthening Our Free Will

Some people argue that there is no such thing as free will. I suppose they just can’t help but think that. When taken to the fullest extent, the idea can be very difficult to grasp. It’s easier, instead, to consider free will as a light switch. We can turn it on and off. Sometimes deliberately. […]

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The Feel of Misliving

Most people have a discrete collection of their favorite books. No one person’s collection is the same. And why is it so individualized? Because sequence matters. The first books you read on a given topic can have a very strong influence over future books you read. There is an imprinting effect that causes you to […]

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Stories We Tell Ourselves

A writer far greater than myself once said we are pattern-seeking animals. But that’s not the story I want to tell; it’s not the story you want to hear, either. The notion that we simply seek out patterns, even when they don’t exist, makes for a very unsettling reality. Before you know it, we’re questioning […]

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Fight The Past. Better Yet, Ignore It.

They say the Pacific Ocean has no memory. What about us? What would we be if we deliberately forgot our entire personal history? To some extent, our past is a vital source of knowledge. Without it, we would make some terrible mistakes again. It fits with George Santayana’s famous line: Those who cannot learn from […]

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It’s Okay. Choose An Enemy.

I have come to understand, to my deepest surprise, that there are people out there I just don’t like. It’s nothing personal. It’s more like an allergy. Some people are allergic to wheat. They don’t actively conspire to harm the wheat industry. They just can’t have wheat in their food. So they keep a distance. […]

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The Best Book for Examining Our Motivations

On Desire William B. Irvine Rating: 10/10 Best Line #1:  Despite our circumstances, no key ingredient of happiness is missing. Best Line #2: In devising our life plan, what should be our grand goal in living? It should be the attainment of satisfaction. Every time I recommend this book to people, they think I’m referring […]

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