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Old 06-20-2003, 04:00 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Suggested Reading or Watching for our Philosophers

I wanted to open this thread
so our members can share the various good
philosophical resources they've found over time.

It doesn't matter what media it is, only if it's filled with ideas.
Especially with alternative perspectives.

Two I'd like to start with are these.

The Power of Myth by Joseph Campbell
I prefer the DVD set, than the book,
it brings a better perspective hearing the man himself
a 6 hour series
WOW, it really brings it all together.

Carlos Casteneda's "Don Juan" series
The stories of his Shamanic apprenticeship are very useful.
If you get past the mysticism,
his ideas about how to live life are excellent.
Skip the first book (this is from a purely anthropological angle)
I started with the "The Power of Silence"
but I'd say start with "A Separate Reality" and work your way up.

Last edited by rogue49; 06-21-2003 at 06:50 AM..
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Old 06-20-2003, 10:32 AM   #2 (permalink)
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<b>Alain de Botton - The consolations of Philosophy</b>

Practical examples of how philosophy can be applied to your daily problems.

<b>Bertrand Russell - Russell on Religion</b>

A collection of essays, where the well-known atheist explains his reasons for being an atheist.

<b>Cynismes - Michel Onfray</b>
(French, translated into beautiful Dutch. Might be available in English too.)

A book about "cynical" philosophers, such as Diogenes. And this means cynical in the original meaning: dog-like, animalistic and especially down-to-earth. Onfray is funny, and either he, or the translator, is a genius with words - it's a joy to read. If you can get it, that is.
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Old 06-20-2003, 01:00 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Anything from Terry Pratchett, but especially "The Science of Discworld" with Jack Cohen and Ian Stewart; and "The Science of Discworld II: the Globe" with Jack Cohen and Ian Stewart.
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Old 06-21-2003, 01:56 AM   #4 (permalink)
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The Dao of Pooh. Can't remember who it's by, but it's a funny, easy introduction to daoism.
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Old 06-21-2003, 06:39 AM   #5 (permalink)
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You should also read some Socratic dialogues. They're mostly written by Plato, and you should have no trouble finding some kind of compilation, just make sure you get Euthyphro.
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Old 06-21-2003, 09:38 AM   #6 (permalink)
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The Dissposessed by Ursela L Leguin
i think thats how you spell her name. This book made me into an anarchist, changed my life completly
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Old 06-21-2003, 11:04 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Parables of Kierkegaard

Atheism: A Reader
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Old 06-22-2003, 03:06 AM   #8 (permalink)
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The Courage to Be by Paul Tillich
A New Christianity for a New World by Rev. John Shelby Spong
The NSRV Bible, or at least Genesis, Exodus, Isiah, Luke, John, Acts, and 1 Corinthians.
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Old 06-24-2003, 10:39 PM   #9 (permalink)
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The First and Last Freedom by Jiddu Krishnamurti. No matter what beliefs you have, this man can challenge you to re-evaluate them.
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Old 06-24-2003, 10:56 PM   #10 (permalink)
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My favorite book:

Think and Grow Rich- by Napoleon Hill
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Old 06-25-2003, 01:41 PM   #11 (permalink)
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The Art of War by Sun Tzu
Very good book and intersting to apply to dealing with people

Zen in the Art of Archery
Haven't read this book in years...time to refresh

(i may get some flak for this last one but...)

The Simpsons and Philosophy
Most of the way through this one (reading it amidst the
Ender quartet) and it is a very good way to apply
philisophical ideas in a context everyone can grasp
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Old 06-25-2003, 07:17 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by SuperMidget
The Art of War by Sun Tzu
Very good book and intersting to apply to dealing with people

Zen in the Art of Archery
Haven't read this book in years...time to refresh
I've read these both
excellent reads...very deep.
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Old 06-25-2003, 11:18 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I suggest The Age of Spiritual Machines by Ray Kurzweil.
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Old 06-26-2003, 12:03 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Das Energi
Principia Discordia
Essence of the Heart Sutra
Essence of Tai Chi Chuan: The Literary Tradition

The Fundamentals of Tai Chi Chuan By Wen Shan Huang (out of print)
After the Ecstasy, the Laundry Audio Edition
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Old 06-26-2003, 01:18 AM   #15 (permalink)
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easy introduction

Sophie's World by Jostein Gaarder: (a 13 year old girl discovers philosophy)

Tao Te Ching (read it several times a year)

Anything by Alan Watts on Zen

Zen and the art of anything (esp motorcycles) basically sucks or if it has the word warrior in the title it blows! the only thing worse is that Don Juan thing. Sorry if you like it: "taste" it's personal.

The Book of Five Rings

The Fictionalized Biography of Miyamoto Musashi

The Bible esp the gospels, and the first five books of the old test.

I second The Power of Myth. some of his other stuff is a bit tedious.

Do NOT read "surfing the himalayas" really lame.
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Old 06-26-2003, 01:39 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Philosophy for Dummies by Tom Morris.
Goes at a slow pace, presents ideas in easy to understand terms, and gives you time to think about each one a lil.
He Also Wrote If Aristotle Ran General Motors which is good if you like the dummies book.
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Old 06-26-2003, 02:34 PM   #17 (permalink)
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The Blind Watchmaker by Richard Dawkins.

Ok, so its not really a philosophy book, but it would definately allow you to make more informed additions to any Evolution vs Creationism argument.
It also does well to dispell much of the misconceptions behind evolution, such as a misunderstanding of puctuated equilibrium.
I reccomend this book, even if you don't particularly like Dawkins, as a person. He still writes with a great deal of clarity - it is my opinion that anyone who reads this book, and takes in all they read, will finish with no doubt about Natural Selection and evolution.

To me philiosophy and science are one and the same.
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Old 06-27-2003, 01:20 PM   #18 (permalink)
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i've never read even _part_ of all of the philosphil books i've wanted to... but my favorite is the easy to fine "The Dialogues of Plato", especially his telling of the trial of Socrates.

Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance was a exellent read, although it got to be redundant fairly quick.

I've tried Socrates' writings... it always feels like i'm reading straight text books for school... never can do it.

i plan to read The Art of War soon.
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Old 06-27-2003, 02:10 PM   #19 (permalink)
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For beginners Lewis Carroll and Douglas Adams are good. You won't even notice you're learning until you've finished.
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Old 06-27-2003, 02:14 PM   #20 (permalink)
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The Art of War by Sun Tzu

Tao Te Ching
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Old 06-27-2003, 02:38 PM   #21 (permalink)
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To everyone that has suggested 'The Art of War', 'A Book of Five Rings' is just as good, but I found 'The Hagakure' to be easier to apply in modern life than both of them.... now if only I could remember who I lent it to.

I've been meaning to finish "The Hero With 1,000 Faces" by Joseph Campbell, thanks for reminding me about him Rogue.
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Old 06-27-2003, 02:41 PM   #22 (permalink)
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The Hagakure
The Salmon of Doubt (by Douglas Adams)
Einstein's Dreams (by Alan Lightman)
Calvin and Hobbes (by Bill Watterson)
Bloom County (by Berke Breathed)
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Old 06-27-2003, 06:27 PM   #23 (permalink)
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hmm, I currently finished Atlas shrugged, and looking to pick up Anthem soon... meanwhile Im investigating Heidegger as well. Here are the two books Ive already found, what other books encompas the ideas morality depends upon the self, and that the world exists through the unification of individuality?

Recommended Reading: Michael E. Zimmerman, Eclipse of the Self: The Development of Heidegger's Concept of Authenticity (Ohio, 1986) {at Amazon.com} and Heidegger, Authenticity, and Modernity: Essays in Honor of Hubert L. Dreyfus (MIT, 2000) {at Amazon.com}.
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Old 06-27-2003, 06:51 PM   #24 (permalink)
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C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

A great account of how Lewis came to become a Christian and why.

Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching

The classic and basis of Taoism.

C.S Lewis, The Screwtape Letters

A very amusing "correspondance" between a head devil and his pupil regarding the pupil's "patient" (read human being being tempted).

Bishop John Shelby Spong, (pretty much anything)

This retired Episcopal Bishop from Newark upsets pretty much the entire Christian right, but I think his message on what makes Christianity a viable force today and how to save it from fundamentalism needs to be heard.

Marcus Borg, Meeting Jesus again for the First Time

You'll never look at the Historical Christ the same way as Borg takes Jesus apart and puts him back together again in a way the thinking Christian can accept.

Thomas Merton, Palace of Nowhere

Thomas Merton, OSB, led the way in blending eastern meditation practices with western prayer, creating the contemplative movement that has become a mainstay of modern western Christianity.
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Last edited by Lebell; 06-28-2003 at 10:04 AM..
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Old 06-27-2003, 10:53 PM   #25 (permalink)
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I'll see if I can work this up chronologically - the books that turned out to be the important ones in making me whatever I am.

This one set me up for the non-gendered view of sex that has become my sexuality (I read it in 7th grade).

Venus Plus X -- Theodore Sturgeon

.........................................

I'll edit this as I add more.
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Old 06-28-2003, 06:08 AM   #26 (permalink)
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wasn't it cs lewis and not mark twain that wrote the screwtape letters? which btw i recommend as well.

dt
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Old 06-28-2003, 09:05 AM   #27 (permalink)
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yeha, thats what I thought as well dt

it was an interesting book, to say the least...

so does anyone have any recommendations on my above post?
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Old 06-28-2003, 10:03 AM   #28 (permalink)
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dtheriault


My bad,

Yes, it was C.S. Lewis. I had it confused in my brain with "Letters from Earth".

Thanks for the catch.
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Old 06-28-2003, 10:08 AM   #29 (permalink)
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for those who want to dabble in the philosphies of life forms, check out Speaker For the Dead, Xenocide, and Children of the mind by Orson Scott Card

it is a series of books, where actually Ender's Game is book one, but 2-4 touched me deeply because i always question killing life forms (animals and such).

it is fiction, true, and it looks very sci fi but the books strongly influenced me.

one other book that literaly changed my life was Les Miserables by Victor Hugo. i find it some what philosphil with the constant struggle of the layman and the law. it shows how rules are critical to society, yet shows how it can be abused grossly in the wrong hands.
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Old 06-29-2003, 12:20 PM   #30 (permalink)
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If interested in the philosophy of science, I would really recommend: Relativity Visualized by Lewis Carroll Epstein.

As to what got me interested in philosophy, I owe it to Socrates' Dialogues and Plato's Republic.

I'm currently reading Foundations for a New Civilization by Will Crichton. It's not too bad. He goes through his new system of philosophy. He uses a lot of logic to dispel some historic beliefs.
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Old 06-29-2003, 06:21 PM   #31 (permalink)
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suggestion to poster I think, that it would be a good idea, to give an indication when the books you post were published. Are the reasonably modern? Or are they hundreds of years old. Just a thought.

Anyway, both of these suggestions are modern.

A film that I think would do well as "An Introduction to Philosophy" is Waking Life it is an animated movie, created using a technique known as rotoscoping, where the scenes are filmed using real actors etc, then are later fed into a computer and traced, to make an animation. It is not really a film, in the traditional sense of a story, with a start middle and an end. Instead, it is about this guy, walking around a dream world, coming across these weird and wonderful characters who impart their philosophical views to him.
Some people claim that it is a very deep and thought provoking film. It's not. It's not meant to be. This film barely scratches the surface of philosophical discourse. How could it? Instead it gives a very gentle introduction to the world of philosophy, giving a primer on some topics such as existentialism and free will.


A book that I think should be required reading for everybody is Innumeracy by John Allen Paulos. It is a very short book (little over 100 pages) about mathematical illiteracy and it's consequences. If you are one of the many people who consider maths unapproachable and boring, fear not! Not a bit of calculus or algebra in sight! He explains how the general publics mathematical illiteracy contributes to exploitation, through pseudo-science, mysticism, predictive dreams, coincidence, stock market scams, numerology and others. It is very well written, it is funny and witty. It doesn't feel as though you are reading a "maths" book at all!
If you can see the humour in a weather forecaster announcing that there is a 50% chance of rain on Saturday, a 50% chance of rain on Sunday, and therefore a 100% chance of rain over the weekend, then this book is for you!
If you don't, then this book is definitely for you!
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Old 06-30-2003, 06:39 AM   #32 (permalink)
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anything by ayn rand.

a steady diet of good sci-fi.

an avid sense of curiosity.
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Old 07-01-2003, 12:16 AM   #33 (permalink)
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What is Existentialism by William Bennett.

The Stranger by Albert Camus

Jonathan Livingston Seagull (a hippy book, but still important)

Robot Dreams by Isaac Asimov
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Old 07-02-2003, 12:40 PM   #34 (permalink)
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monody, i'm with you on ayn rand; i read atlas shrugged and the fountainhead about every 6-7 years...keeps me on an even keel...

fade, if you liked atlas shrugged, you'll also appreciate the fountainhead...
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Old 08-20-2003, 02:36 PM   #35 (permalink)
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Recommended Reading

I think we should make a list of books that we find important to developing our philosophical thought. I will start it off:

The Tao of Pooh - Bennjamin Hoff
A Brief History of Everything - Ken Wilber
Zen Mind, Begginers Mind - Suzuki
 
Old 08-20-2003, 03:07 PM   #36 (permalink)
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Search and ye shall find.

http://www.tfproject.org/tfp/showthr...hreadid=12712&
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Old 08-20-2003, 03:09 PM   #37 (permalink)
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The Bible

teeheeheee...sorry couldn't help it.......
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Old 08-20-2003, 03:56 PM   #38 (permalink)
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zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance. by robert m pirsig
edit: the power of now by eckhart tolle
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Old 08-21-2003, 08:59 AM   #39 (permalink)
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The Gay Science, Nietzsche
Works of Love, Kierkegaard
Being and Time, Heidegger
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Old 08-21-2003, 09:50 AM   #40 (permalink)
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prosequesce, why are you apologising for suggesting the bible? Since it is the basis of the moral and spiritual codes of so much of the world's population (certainly more than any of the philosophers thus far listed, with the possible exception of the Buddha), I'd say the Bible is a great place to start "developing our philosophical thought."
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