The Consolations of Philosophy
Alain de Botton
Published 2001 by Vintage (first published 2000)
De Botton's The Consolations of Philosophy takes the discipline of logic and the mind back to its roots. Drawing inspiration from six of the finest minds in history – Socrates, Epicurus, Seneca, Montaigne, Schopenhauer and Nietzsche – he addresses lack of money, the pain of love, inadequacy, anxiety and conformity.
De Botton's book led one critic to call philosophy 'the new rock and roll.'
This book could replace most of the pop psychology and self help sections of any bookstore. De Botton reveals the truth that most of the ideas authors of those genres have been slinging around and re-using are actually written a long time ago. His format works best here and shows us that philosophy is not some far off subject that has no relevancy to our lives. It is to live wisely.
He also reveals that these philosophers weren't the strong jawed leaders we see portrayed in marble, rather they were mostly struggling, depressed, even outcasts with no money, who were just trying to figure out why things are the way they are. And thereby how to live a deep and meaningful life.
One reader reviews it as: "Alain de Botton is a kind of Everyman's philosopher – which is exactly how I like my philosophers. (In fact, he teaches philosophy at the University of London). The book is a quick romp through a half-dozen philosophers, from Socrates to Nietzsche, by applying their philosophies to the author's everyday problems..."
This is a must read book.
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