May 19, 2022
Epicurus: A Guide to the Principal Doctrines
Text, commentary and study guide
The Principal Doctrines is the main work of Epicurus on happiness. This article presents the original text with explanations and discussion questions. It also includes tips for organising an Epicurus reading group or book club. (more...)
January 24, 2022
The Dialectic of Enlightenment
Horkheimer, Adorno and the Frankfurt School
The Frankfurt School is generally taken to mean a lose collection of thinkers who first congregated around the Institute for Social Research in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. (more...)
January 12, 2022
Nothing Matters. Or Does It?
What exactly do we mean when we say that “nothing matters”? More than sixty years ago, the British philosopher Richard Mervyn Hare attempted to answer this question in an early essay. (more...)
December 20, 2021
Five More Inspiring Philosophy Books for Your Christmas
Our big Christmas gifts guide, part 2
Daily Philosophy’s recommendations for five more of the most inspiring books for your Christmas presents list. The best from Jill Taylor, John Stevens, Bill Porter, Eugen Herrigel and Aldous Huxley. With tips on whom to gift each book. (more...)
December 11, 2021
The 5 Most Inspiring Philosophy Books for Your Christmas
Our big Christmas gifts guide, part 1
Daily Philosophy’s recommendations for five of the most inspiring books for your Christmas presents list. The best from Alexandra David-Neel, Jane Dobisz, Erich Fromm, Douglas Hofstadter and Pico Iyer. With tips on whom to gift each book. (more...)
October 1, 2021
Robert Rodriguez on Hermits
Robert Rodriguez is the author of The Book of Hermits and founder and editor of the website Hermitary. In this interview, he talks to us about the history of eremitism and the nature of hermit life. (more...)
September 27, 2021
Robert Rodriguez: The Book of Hermits
Robert Rodriguez’ “The Book of Hermits” is a work of impressive scholarship, covering the global history and lore of eremitism from antiquity to the present. (more...)
One Hundred Days in a Hermit’s Hut
Jane Dobisz on living alone in the woods
In her honest and entertaining book “One Hundred Days of Solitude: Losing Myself and Finding Grace on a Zen Retreat,” Zen teacher Jane Dobisz recalls the three months she spent as a young person alone in a hut in the woods, bowing, chanting and meditating. (more...)
Happy in a Concentration Camp?
It's possible, says Viktor E. Frankl
Viktor Frankl was an Austrian neurologist and psychiatrist who, because of his Jewish descent, spent the last six months of World War II in a German concentration camp, which he barely survived. (more...)
The illusive quest to predict the future
The very idea of predicting future states of the world continues to fascinate and perplex philosophers and social scientists. Why is it so difficult to make predictions about society? The problem is not so much the complexity of the task, but the concepts we use to think about the world. (more...)
Stephanie Mills: Epicurean Simplicity
Is a simple life the key to happiness?
In her book “Epicurean Simplicity,” author and activist Stephanie Mills analyses what is wrong with our modern way of life – and she goes back to the philosophy of Epicurus to find a cure. Mills’ book is as beautiful and relaxing as it is inspiring – a passionate plea for a life well-lived, a life that is less wasteful and more meaningful. (more...)
The Real Happiness Machine
Ray Bradbury on living and dying well
In many of Bradbury’s stories we can find an entire philosophy of life that is well worth discovering and adopting. (more...)
Aldous Huxley’s “Island”
An even braver new world?
The last book of visionary writer Aldous Huxley (1894-1963), Island, is a bold attempt to envision a utopian society that provides its members with everything they need to achieve happiness in life. (more...)
Erich Fromm: The Art of Loving
Do we need to learn how to love?
In his book “The Art of Loving” (1956) the psychoanalyst and philosopher Erich Fromm (1900-1980) discusses how love is often wrongly perceived as the passive “falling in love.” For Fromm, love is mainly a decision to love, to become a loving person. (more...)
Introductions to Philosophy
The three best books for the beginner
The three best introductions are: 1. For a very easy-to-read overview, Philip Stokes (2002): Philosophy – 100 Essential Thinkers. 2. For an in-depth discussion of Western thought, Bertrand Russell (1945): A History of Western Philosophy. 3. For a good collection of introductory sources from all over philosophy’s history, Cooper and Fosl (2009): Philosophy. The Classic Readings. (more...)
Novalis and the Romantic View of the World
From the Romantics to modern science
German Romantics, much like their English counterparts, valued spontaneity and naturalness, in part as a reaction to the beginning loss of the natural world due to industrialisation and urbanisation. (more...)
Is Abortion Ethical?
Judith Jarvis Thomson: A Defense of Abortion
Is abortion ethical? Judith Jarvis Thomson, who died five days ago, created one of the most well-known thought experiments in modern ethics. In her 1971 paper “A Defense of Abortion,” she presents the thought experiment of the unconscious violinist. (more...)
Hacker culture and Hesse’s Glass Bead Game
What’s wrong with the world and how to fix it.
Hermann Hesse’s ‘The Glass Bead Game’ is probably his greatest novel, his deepest, most intriguing, most hackerish in spirit. It combines a theory of history and education with lessons in Zen, meditations on the enduring power of institutions, friendship, duty and excellence. (more...)