Timeless Philosophy Books for your Love of Wisdom

MEDITATIONS

Marcus Aurelius

Marcus Aurelius is a believer of the concept “Logos”, which is an idea that organizes the universe. He thought everything occurs for a reason, and that death was unavoidable. Historically, infant mortality was high and average life expectancy was short. Marcus Aurelius believes individuals should not fear death. Whether you are a ruler, philosopher, or brave gladiator, you must accept, not dread, mortality.

Our time on Earth is short; therefore we must maximize our efforts. Even though the author disliked courting, he did it gladly. When he felt like giving up, he only had to remember his job as emperor. The essence of each event is subjective. If you believe everything happens for a purpose, recognize it for what it is: essential for the larger good.

The only anguish you can genuinely endure is your own. A Roman author dealt with agony by reminding himself that suffering is part of the larger good. Disrespecting the everlasting logos that are engraved in each individual just adds to the suffering.

LETTERS FROM A STOIC

Seneca

Seneca’s letters are as relevant and instructive now as they were then. True wisdom is living a simple life, harmonizing with nature. Our souls are like the sun’s beams that touch the ground yet belong to a star in the sky. His rationality defines man. Our thoughts grow more distinct as we strive to develop them.

But it does not imply we should shut ourselves in a library and consume every book we can find. Philosophy is the study of truth in the natural and divine worlds. We can make better judgments about our lives when we can see clearly. For Seneca, philosophy is the key to a decent existence. To become intelligent, you will need to study philosophy.

It teaches us to confront our anxieties and find equilibrium. Philosophy requires rigorous study. You cannot merely skim the surface; you must go deep. But you will have to abandon influential thinkers as you establish your own way. Your thoughts will make you feel at ease anyplace in the world.

Looking inside and quieting the mind brings true peace. Happiness is the handmaiden of philosophy, which teaches us to live agreeing with nature.

THE ART OF LIVING

Epictetus

Why dwell on the past and worry about the future if we lose out in the present? Every individual is an inter-being, a synthesis of materials from several sources. No matter what you are going through, reminding yourself that you are not alone might help. Furthermore, the world is a part of you. You always have and will always exist.

Energy can only be converted, not generated or destroyed. The cloud you saw yesterday may become water you drink one day. You were in your mother’s womb before you were born. You were created when sperm and egg united during conception. Your grandparents and forebears have these traits.

That implies you never existed — you were simply always developing into who you are today. You cannot enjoy the current moment if you are continually seeking for something you do not have. Aimlessness is a Buddhist strategy for being present. It is a condition when you let go of chasing after things. The human body is a marvel of nature, yet it will eventually lose some of its powers.

Knowing that your body will one day crumble might help you appreciate it. Our inherent ephemeral nature allows for constructive transformation. Cravings are like fish bait; we cannot see how deeply they hook us. They eventually give us pain rather than happiness. To recover freedom, give up desires.

Intuitive healing restores serenity and pleasure in your life. But healing requires being totally present and facing your sorrow. You cannot accomplish this because events or sentiments overwhelm you. Nhat Hanh: Nirvana is a condition of being, not a destination. One option is to acknowledge the continuity of all existence.

Peace comes from knowing that indications like “life” and “death” are not genuine. Buddha understood how to bear his suffering on the way to Nirvana. You will get nirvana if you do the same. You may use breathing meditation to combat restlessness, or you might search for an easy way out.

THE WISDOM OF LIFE

Arthur Schopenhauer

Arthur Schopenhauer tries to define happiness and determine how to gain it. Three types of blessings exist in life. Mental and physical health are prerequisites for happiness. A healthy person is more inclined to enjoy life. A wise mind sees beauty in the mundane, while they trap a fool with what he has.

If you are used to finery, you will be disappointed. People born affluent perceive money as a need they cannot afford to lose. Position is the third category of life’s benefits. Vanity hinders enjoyment. Others’ views will distract you from inner serenity and satisfaction.

It is the lowest and most destructive type of pride. Rank is a governmental weapon that misleads public opinion. There are four subcategories of honor besides the two major categories. There are two sides to respect: aim and subjective. Civic honor is the belief that we should unreservedly respect others’ rights.

“Honor is merely something that must not be lost,” said Schopenhauer. True renown develops slowly but steadily like an oak. Fame requires work, but once earned, it stays. Possibilities for happiness are based on a person’s characteristics. Personality dictates how happy we hope to be in life and even gives us some freedom.

Position, or how others see us, hinders joy. It values others’ opinions too highly.

BEYOND GOOD AND EVIL

Friedrich Nietzsche

Several moral conceptions and beliefs that many of us now hold dear are attacked in his groundbreaking essay Beyond Good and Evil. Philosophers were deceitful to Nietzsche. But all they did was disguise their preconceptions as the unmistakable truth. “I think, therefore I am,” Descartes’ thesis was unquestionable for many. But, according to the critic, this statement is full of unfounded assumptions.

The ego is a figment of the desire for power. Humans, for Nietzsche, are far from the pious picture offered by Christianity. Humans know today that we are not different from nature. The complete self is a myth; only the drive to power exists. “Justice” and “beauty” are invisible ideals in Plato’s philosophy, being outside human experience.

In Nietzsche is opinion, there are no universal truths. The only truth, according to Nietzsche, is human diversity. Philosophy is the drive to power spiritualized. Christian morality benefits the herd above the individual, says Nietzsche. In Nietzsche is view, our ideals either serve or weaken us.

Shouldn't we reject those who belittle us? Become the victim of your violence by becoming a Christian. Morality has suppressed humanity’s aggressive instincts, yet that energy has not gone. Nietzsche claims that modern European morality is based on “slave morality.” Christians helped spread slave morality, which ultimately permeated the governing elites.

According to Nietzsche, enslaved people saw the ruling elite as “evil”. Christian morality threatens culture and progress by stifling outstanding brains. We have a one-size-fits-all morality that is intolerant of alternative ways of existence, according to Nietzsche. He foresaw a new sort of philosopher who would defy social dogmas. Nietzsche: We should encourage, not discourage, autonomous thinking.

Friedrich Nietzsche foretold a new breed of philosopher, free of society’s dogmas. These thinkers would be their rulers, bound solely by their ideals. They would also be fun and adaptable in their viewpoint. Nietzsche said a life-denying ethic inherited from Christianity burdened Western philosophy. Europe needed a new sort of philosopher, one who could think and live outside the Christian faith’s foundations.

THE MYTH OF SISYPHUS AND OTHER ESSAYS

Albert Camus

Camus argues in The Myth of Sisyphus that most people feel meaningless. This begs what we should do about it. Can we live meaningful lives in a meaningless world, or should we just die? Camus wonders whether a decent existence is conceivable in a meaningless universe. He contends that life is meaningless without significance.

If this is true, everyone who feels this way about their life faces an essential choice. The contrast between a person seeking meaning and a universe that always defies comprehension is what Camus calls absurdity. Some individuals seek solace in religious and philosophical concepts. Faith is a false avoidance of our circumstances. In The Ides of March, we learned why religion is an inauthentic reaction to absurdity.

According to Camus, we must rebel against the ridiculous by living fully despite it. Camus claims that true freedom requires the bizarre. Suicide, according to Camus, is not a valid reaction to the meaninglessness of life since it denies us our freedom. In this way, despairing suicide is like optimistic faith. A lack of hope for a lead to greater passion in this life, according to Camus.

Since no one can know what the optimum way to live is, it is preferable to have as many experiences as possible before dying. Sisyphus was a famous king of Corinth in Greek mythology. Something forever destined him to push a rock up a mountain just to watch it tumble back down. According to Camus, this is a human condition. For Camus, the world’s complexity will always outstrip human comprehension.

We will never find ultimate purpose in our life by looking around ourselves. But it does not imply we have to be miserable. Do something innovative.

So, what do you think? Drop a comment and follow!

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