Since antiquity, people have been asking themselves what it means to live a good life. How should I live? What constitutes a good life? What's the role of fate? What's the role of money? Is leading a good life a question of mindset, or is it more about reaching your goals? Is it better to actively seek happiness or to avoid unhappiness? Each generation poses these questions anew, and somehow the answers are always fundamentally disappointing. Why? Because we're constantly searching for a single principle, a single tenet, a single rule. Yet this holy grail--a single, simple path to happiness--doesn't exist. Rolf Dobelli -- successful businessman, founder of the TED-style ideas conference Zurich Minds, bestselling author, and all-around seeker of big ideas--has made finding a shortcut to happiness his life's mission. He's synthesized the leading thinkers and the latest science in happiness to find the best shortcuts to satisfaction in The Art of the Good Life, his follow up to the international bestseller The Art of Thinking Clearly (which has sold more than 2.5 million copies in 40 languages all around the globe). The Art of the Good Life is a toolkit designed for practical living. Here you'll find fifty-two happiness hacks -- from guilt-free shunning of technology to gleefully paying your parking tickets -- that are certain to optimize your happiness. These tips may not guarantee you a good life, but they'll give you a better chance (and that's all any of us can ask for).
This book argues that Protestant theological ethics not only reveals basic virtue ethical characteristics, but also contributes significantly to a viable contemporary virtue ethics. Pieter Vos demonstrates that post-Reformation theological ethics still understands the good in terms of the good life, takes virtues as necessary for living the good life and considers human nature as a source of moral knowledge. Vos approaches Protestant theology as an important bridge between pre-modern virtue ethics, shaped by Aristotle and transformed by Augustine of Hippo, and late modern understandings of morality. The volume covers a range of topics, going from eudaimonism and Calvinist ethics to Reformed scholastic virtue ethics and character formation in the work of Søren Kierkegaard. The author shows how Protestantism has articulated other-centered virtues from a theology of grace, affirmed ordinary life and emphasized the need of transformation of this life and its orders. Engaging with philosophy of the art of living, Neo-Aristotelianism and exemplarist ethics, he develops constructive contributions to a contemporary virtue ethics.
The field of biotechnology has provided us with radical revisions and reappraisals of the nature and possibilities of our biological existence. Yet beyond its immediate utility, does a life that is healthier, longer, or freer from disease make us 'better' or more moral people? Bioscience and the Good Life explores the complex relationship between modern biosciences and human flourishing, their sympathies and schisms, and the instances of their reconciliation. Here cognitive enhancement, longevity, and the spectacle of excellence in sports, are examined within the context of what constitutes a life well lived. Framing biotechnological innovation in the discourse of duty and ethics, Brassington advances an insightful and involved response to the existing debates between bioscientific optimists and pessimists, one which mediates their differences, and expands the traditional scope of their arguments.
An exploration of philosophical and religious ideas about humor in modern philosophy and their secular implications. By exploring the works of both Anthony Ashley Cooper, Third Earl of Shaftesbury, and Søren Kierkegaard, Lydia B. Amir finds a rich tapestry of ideas about the comic, the tragic, humor, and related concepts such as irony, ridicule, and wit. Amir focuses chiefly on these two thinkers, but she also includes Johann Georg Hamann, an influence of Kierkegaard’s who was himself influenced by Shaftesbury. All three thinkers were devout Christians but were intensely critical of the organized Christianity of their milieux, and humor played an important role in their responses. The author examines the epistemological, ethical, and religious roles of humor in their philosophies and proposes a secular philosophy of humor in which humor helps attain the philosophic ideals of self-knowledge, truth, rationality, virtue, and wisdom, as well as the more ambitious goals of liberation, joy, and wisdom.
In this first English translation of the prize-winning Dutch title Leven is Een Kunst, Paul van Tongeren creates a new kind of virtue ethics, one that centres on how to 'live well' in our contemporary world. While virtue ethics is based on the moral philosophy of Aristotle, it has had many interpretations and iterations throughout history and features prominently in the thinking of the Stoics, Christian narratives and the writings of Nietzsche. The Art of Living Well explores and expands upon these traditions, using them as a basis to form a new interpretation; one that foregrounds art and creativity as paramount to the struggle to act in an authentic and moral way. Acting as both a clear introduction to virtue ethics and moral philosophy and a serious work of original philosophy, this book connects philosophy with real lived experience and tackles, head-on, the perennial philosophical question: 'how do we live well?'
For much of its history, philosophy was not merely a theoretical discipline but a way of life, an "art of living." This practical aspect of philosophy has been much less dominant in modernity than it was in ancient Greece and Rome, when philosophers of all stripes kept returning to Socrates as a model for living. The idea of philosophy as an art of living has survived in the works of such major modern authors as Montaigne, Nietzsche, and Foucault. Each of these writers has used philosophical discussion as a means of establishing what a person is and how a worthwhile life is to be lived. In this wide-ranging, brilliantly written account, Alexander Nehamas provides an incisive reevaluation of Socrates' place in the Western philosophical tradition and shows the importance of Socrates for Montaigne, Nietzsche, and Foucault. Why does each of these philosophers—each fundamentally concerned with his own originality—return to Socrates as a model? The answer lies in the irony that characterizes the Socrates we know from the Platonic dialogues. Socratic irony creates a mask that prevents a view of what lies behind. How Socrates led the life he did, what enabled or inspired him, is never made evident. No tenets are proposed. Socrates remains a silent and ambiguous character, forcing readers to come to their own conclusions about the art of life. This, Nehamas shows, is what allowed Montaigne, Nietzsche, and Foucault to return to Socrates as a model without thereby compelling them to imitate him. This highly readable, erudite study argues for the importance of the tradition within Western philosophy that is best described as "the art of living" and casts Montaigne, Nietzsche, and Foucault as the three major modern representatives of this tradition. Full of original ideas and challenging associations, this work will offer new ways of thinking about the philosophers Nehamas discusses and about the discipline of philosophy itself.
Business reflects culture, and those managers who are most successful are those who can interpret shifts in the prevailing attitudes and aspirations of the dominant culture. Dobson argues that the old models of technical and moral management are giving way to the idea of the aesthetic manager, who holds the art of management and the search for excellence as the highest ideals. He incorporates business ethics, postmodernism, virtue-ethics theory, and real-world examples to illustrate the emerging paradigm of the manager as artisan.
Happiness. We all want it - but how can we get it? Author Mark Vernon has solved the problem by collecting the wisdom of the greatest minds in history and making their thinking on the things that matter most in life accessible and, above all, practical. Full of everday examples to make sometimes high-blown philosophy entertaining and relevant, this book shows you in just 30 steps how you can crack the secret to living The Good Life.
Ethics and the Good Life asks for the point of morality as a way of living. Employing occasional irreverence and good humor, Brad Art engages students in the questions and methods of philosophy. The book asks students to examine their beliefs about morality, religion, and human interaction. In disagreeing with Art's slightly extreme position, students are forced to carefully articulate and defend their positions. Five compelling moral problems are provided for analysis and application of the theory.