Personally I have enjoyed the writings of the chinese philosophers Lao Tzu and Chuang Tzu along with the wonderful rants of Alan Watts and Terrence McKenna. I’m interested in reading different Authors. What have you read and enjoyed, particularly when it comes the utility of the philosophy?
it’s low brow compared to your above list but i’ve been reading robert pirsigs Zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance.
i like it quite a lot so far.
oh yeah, and Jean Baudrillard’s Simulacra and Simulation
(See my signature.)
Grab her novel Atlas Shrugged, it’s filled with mind stimulants on almost every page…
The philophy is a science which basically writes down and analyses things we all know, but never really think about. Also, people tend to like the philosophy books which are about things the reader knows and HAS thought about. So according to the words of one philosopher, best philosophy writer is probably yourself.
Either way, I recommend the works of Anton Szandor LaVey. Not because I think his works are enlightening or right. They are indeed right, but so are most other philosophy books. Important thing is, you can later tell your friends: “But, I am reading the Satanic Bible”
straw dogs: thoughts on humans and other animals by john gray.
i picked it up by accident in the philosophy section of a blackwells, but its had a profound effect on how i look at the world.
its contemporary, and you’ll either love it and go “hmm he’s right” or it’ll piss you off and you’ll want to throw it out the window. theres a will self quote to that effect but i cant find it.
I’ve read some of Descartes because I was curious about his way of thinking (I hate maths, so not out of interest in his ideas), Berkeley because of his religious fantasies and a lot of Locke because I turned out to be a firm believer in causuality.
Other than that, in my humble opinion, Dostoyevski’s Notes from
Underground is the best read on the planet as it carefully and
realistically puts you on the brink of personal ruin with a first-person
safari through the deepest depths of social behaviour.
If you like sci fi as well, this one is a must-read:
Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar . . .: Understanding Philosophy Through Jokes
Havn’t read it yet, but its on my to read list.
Descartes walked into a bar. The bartender asked him: would you like a beer? Descartes answered: I think not. And vanished.
Marx, engels, and Ursula K. le Guin!!
Sartre, Buddha, Marcus Aurelius and the Big Lebowski
Noam Chomsky… Richard Dawkins… Douglas Adams… Saul Williams… George Carlin… Monty Python
Best joke EVAR.
I think it’s awesome so many Renoisers have an interest in philosophy!
Only few of my friends share my interest and those few that do
only read The World of Sophia. Or half of it.
lol, I’m more into jazz than jungle
… though it never got me chicks
philosophy doesn’t make you look smart, but it sure makes you look
Basically LaVey has stolen all of his core ideas from Ayn Rand and perverted them into an irrational hodge-podge. Read the original instead, it’s much more vital and rational.
Also check out the transhumanist movement, for a good introduction see for example http://www.maxmore.com/extprn3.htm
Ray Kurzweil is a transhumanist too, check out his books on futurism etc.
No offense, but that’s just soooo French… Ever since Descartes planted platonism back in Western thought one can’t simply argue with a Frenchman that the object is NOT the construction of some sort of consciousness, be it personal, social or divine. One of my friends studied many years in France and came back as a postmodern nihilistic socialist-feminist…
Yes, that’s a good suggestion. Plato is probably the philosopher who has most influenced Western culture’s inner core (by extension via the 3rd party plugin Christianity), so in order to understand what ideas has helped to shape that culture Plato is a must read.
Well, I said “no offence” but yes, in fact my comment was a bit sweeping so you’re right that it’s a bad thing to say. Now the common, honest hard-working Frenchman is not included in my implicit attack. I just have a problem with the elitist intellectual establishment in France. It has almost become a joke on universities today, if the professor’s booklist mostly favors French intellectuals, you know what to expect. And, based on my personal experience when I have debated with French intellectuals in seminars etc, they are often (today) so extremely constructivist in their premises that it’s becoming more and more difficult to argue outside of that constructivist box. That’s what I find absurd, and in the realm of ideas I’m convinced that such monolithic constructivist power (and it’s antithesis variants) are the major flawed perspectives that cause most of France’s social-political problems today.
I agree =D tips his tophat