Here are our top ten recommendations if you are looking for the best books to read in Philosophy. We have made sure our list is diverse to cater to the interests of different types of readers.
1. The Authoritarian Moment: How the Left Weaponized America's Institutions Against Dissent
How far are Americans willing to go to force each other to fall in line? According to the establishment media, the intelligentsia, and our political chattering class, the greatest threat to American freedom lies in right-wing authoritarianism. We’ve heard that some 75 million Americans who voted for Donald Trump represent the rise of American fascism; that conservatives have allowed authoritarianism to bloom in their midst, creating a grave danger for the republic. But what if the true authoritarian threat to America doesn’t come from the political right, but from the supposedly anti-fascist left? There are certainly totalitarians on the political right. But statistically, they represent a fringe movement with little institutional clout. The authoritarian left, meanwhile, is ascendant in nearly every area of American life. A small number of leftists - college-educated, coastal, and uncompromising - have not just taken over the Democratic Party but our corporations, our universities, our scientific establishment, our cultural institutions. And they have used their newfound power to silence their opposition. The authoritarian left is aggressively insistent that everyone must conform to its values, demanding submission and conformity. The dogmatic left is obsessed with putting people in categories and changing human nature. Everyone who opposes it must be destroyed. Ben Shapiro looks at everything from pop culture to the Frankfurt school, social media to the founding fathers, to explain the origins of our turn to tyranny, and why so many seem blind to it. More than a catalog of bad actors and intemperate acts, The Authoritarian Moment lays bare the intolerance and rigidity creeping into all American ideology - and prescribes the solution to ending the authoritarianism that threatens our future. PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.
- Author: Ben Shapiro
- Genre: Politics & Social Sciences, Politics & Government, Specific Topics, Human Rights
2. How to Relax (Mindfulness Essentials Book 5)
Thich Nhat Hanh continues his exploration of Zen mindfulness practices with this pocket-sized how-to guide that demonstrates the importance of taking time to stop, relax, and recharge How to Relax is part of The Mindfulness Essentials series of how-to titles by Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh, introducing beginners and reminding seasoned practitioners of the essentials of mindfulness practice. Pocket-sized, with original two color illustrations by celebrated artist Jason DeAntonis, How to Relax shows how critical it is to regularly interrupt the hub-bub and routine of our lives to stop, relax mindfully, and recharge. Thich Nhat Hanh says that when we relax, we “become calm water, and we will reflect reality as it is. If we’re not calm, the image we reflect will be distorted. When the image is distorted by our minds, it’s not the reality, and it causes lots of suffering.” Relaxation is essential for accessing the tranquility and joy that lead to increased personal well-being. With sections on healing, relief from nonstop thinking, transforming unpleasant sounds, solitude, being peace, and more, How to Relax includes meditations you can do to help you achieve the benefits of relaxation no matter where you are. Scientific studies indicate that meditation contributes tremendously to well-being, general health, and longevity. How to Relax is a unique gift for those who want a simple guide to achieving deep relaxation, controlling stress, and renewing mental freshness and clarity, appropriate for those practicing in any spiritual tradition, whether seasoned practitioners or new to meditations.
- Author: Thich Nhat Hanh
- Publisher: Parallax Press (September 18, 2015)
- Genre: Religion & Spirituality, Buddhism
3. The 48 Laws of Power
Amoral, cunning, ruthless, and instructive, this multi-million-copy New York Times bestseller is the definitive manual for anyone interested in gaining, observing, or defending against ultimate control – from the author of The Laws of Human Nature. In the book that People magazine proclaimed “beguiling” and “fascinating,” Robert Greene and Joost Elffers have distilled three thousand years of the history of power into 48 essential laws by drawing from the philosophies of Machiavelli, Sun Tzu, and Carl Von Clausewitz and also from the lives of figures ranging from Henry Kissinger to P.T. Barnum. Some laws teach the need for prudence (“Law 1: Never Outshine the Master”), others teach the value of confidence (“Law 28: Enter Action with Boldness”), and many recommend absolute self-preservation (“Law 15: Crush Your Enemy Totally”). Every law, though, has one thing in common: an interest in total domination. In a bold and arresting two-color package, The 48 Laws of Power is ideal whether your aim is conquest, self-defense, or simply to understand the rules of the game.
- Author: Robert Greene
- Publisher: Penguin Books; 1st edition (September 1, 2000)
- Genre: Politics & Social Sciences, Politics & Government
- ISBN: 978-0140280197
- Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.4 x 1.3 inches
4. The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER · WALL STREET JOURNAL BESTSELLER · USA TODAY BESTSELLER “ The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse is not only a thought-provoking, discussion-worthy story, the book itself is an object of art.”- Elizabeth Egan, The New York Times From British illustrator, artist, and author Charlie Mackesy comes a journey for all ages that explores life’s universal lessons, featuring 100 color and black-and-white drawings. “What do you want to be when you grow up?” asked the mole. “Kind,” said the boy. Charlie Mackesy offers inspiration and hope in uncertain times in this beautiful book, following the tale of a curious boy, a greedy mole, a wary fox and a wise horse who find themselves together in sometimes difficult terrain, sharing their greatest fears and biggest discoveries about vulnerability, kindness, hope, friendship and love. The shared adventures and important conversations between the four friends are full of life lessons that have connected with readers of all ages.
- Author: Charlie Mackesy
- Publisher: HarperOne; Illustrated edition (October 22, 2019)
- Genre: Comics & Graphic Novels, Graphic Novels
- ISBN: 978-0062976581
- Dimensions: 6 x 0.62 x 8 inches
5. 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos
What does everyone in the modern world need to know? Renowned psychologist Jordan B. Peterson's answer to this most difficult of questions uniquely combines the hard-won truths of ancient tradition with the stunning revelations of cutting-edge scientific research. Humorous, surprising, and informative, Dr. Peterson tells us why skateboarding boys and girls must be left alone, what terrible fate awaits those who criticize too easily, and why you should always pet a cat when you meet one on the street. What does the nervous system of the lowly lobster have to tell us about standing up straight (with our shoulders back) and about success in life? Why did ancient Egyptians worship the capacity to pay careful attention as the highest of gods? What dreadful paths do people tread when they become resentful, arrogant, and vengeful? Dr. Peterson journeys broadly, discussing discipline, freedom, adventure, and responsibility, distilling the world's wisdom into 12 practical and profound rules for life. 12 Rules for Life shatters the modern commonplaces of science, faith, and human nature while transforming and ennobling the mind and spirit of its listeners.
- Author: Jordan B. Peterson
- Genre: Health, Fitness & Dieting, Psychology & Counseling, Applied Psychology
6. The Metaphysical Club: A Story of Ideas in America
The Metaphysical Club is the winner of the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for History. A national bestseller and "hugely ambitious, unmistakably brilliant" (Janet Maslin, New York Times ) book about the creation of modern American thought. The Metaphysical Club was an informal group that met in Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1872, to talk about ideas. Its members included Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. future associate justice of the United States Supreme Court; William James, the father of modern American psychology; and Charles Sanders Peirce, logician, scientist, and the founder of semiotics. The Club was probably in existence for about nine months. No records were kept. The one thing we know that came out of it was an idea -- an idea about ideas. This book is the story of that idea. Holmes, James, and Peirce all believed that ideas are not things "out there" waiting to be discovered but are tools people invent -- like knives and forks and microchips -- to make their way in the world. They thought that ideas are produced not by individuals, but by groups of individuals -- that ideas are social. They do not develop according to some inner logic of their own but are entirely dependent-- like germs -- on their human carriers and environment. And they thought that the survival of any idea deps not on its immutability but on its adaptability. The Metaphysical Club is written in the spirit of this idea about ideas. It is not a history of philosophy but an absorbing narrative about personalities and social history, a story about America. It begins with the Civil War and s in 1919 with Justice Holmes's dissenting opinion in the case of U.S. v. Abrams-the basis for the constitutional law of free speech. The first four sections of the book focus on Holmes, James, Peirce, and their intellectual heir, John Dewey. The last section discusses some of the fundamental twentieth-century ideas they are associated with. This is a book about a way of thinking that changed American life.
- Author: Louis Menand
- Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux; First edition (April 10, 2002)
- Genre: Kindle Store, Kindle eBooks, History
7. The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment
To make the journey into The Power of Now you need to leave your analytical mind and its false created self, the ego, behind. Access to the Now is everywhere - in the body, the silence, and the space all around you. These are the keys to enter a state of inner peace. They can be used to bring you into the Now, the present moment, where problems do not exist. It is here you find your joy and are able to embrace your true self. It is here you discover that you are already complete and perfect. Although the journey is challenging, Eckhart Tolle offers simple language in a question and answer format. The words themselves are the signposts to guide you on your journey. There are new discoveries to be made along the way: you are not your mind, you can find your way out of psychological pain, authentic human power is found by surrendering to the Now. When you become fully present and accepting of what is, you open yourself to the transforming experience of The Power of Now .
- Author: Eckhart Tolle
- Genre: Health, Fitness & Dieting, Alternative Medicine, Meditation
8. The Art of Living: Peace and Freedom in the Here and Now
In troubled times there is an urgency to understand ourselves and our world. We have so many questions, and they tug at us night and day, consciously and unconsciously. In this important volume, Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh - one of the most revered spiritual leaders in the world today - reveals an art of living in mindfulness that helps us answer life's deepest questions and experience the happiness and freedom we desire. Thich Nhat Hanh presents, for the first time, seven transformative meditations that open up new perspectives on our lives, our relationships, and our interconnectedness with the world around us. Based on the last full talks before his sudden hospitalization, and drawing on intimate examples from his own life, Thich Nhat Hanh shows us how these seven meditations can free us to live happy, peaceful, and active lives and face ageing and dying with curiosity and joy and without fear. Containing the essence of the Buddha's teachings and Thich Nhat Hanh's poignant, timeless, and clarifying prose, The Art of Living provides a spiritual dimension to our lives. This is not an effort to escape life or to dwell in a place of bliss outside of this world. Instead this path will allow us to discover where we come from and where we are going. And, most of all, it will generate happiness, understanding, and love, so we can live deeply in each moment of our lives, right where we are.
- Author: Edoardo Ballerini
- Genre: Audible Books & Originals, Politics & Social Sciences, Philosophy, Eastern
9. Think Like a Monk: Train Your Mind for Peace and Purpose Every Day
Jay Shetty, social media superstar and host of the number one podcast On Purpose , distills the timeless wisdom he learned as a monk into practical steps anyone can take every day to live a less anxious, more meaningful life. When you think like a monk, you’ll understand: How to overcome negativity How to stop overthinking Why comparison kills love How to use your fear Why you can’t find happiness by looking for it How to learn from everyone you meet Why you are not your thoughts How to find your purpose Why kindness is crucial to success And much more Shetty grew up in a family where you could become one of three things - a doctor, a lawyer, or a failure. His family was convinced he had chosen option three: Instead of attending his college graduation ceremony, he headed to India to become a monk, to meditate every day for four to eight hours, and devote his life to helping others. After three years, one of his teachers told him that he would have more impact on the world if he left the monk’s path to share his experience and wisdom with others. Heavily in debt, and with no recognizable skills on his résumé, he moved back home in North London with his parents. Shetty reconnected with old school friends - many working for some of the world’s largest corporations - who were experiencing tremendous stress, pressure, and unhappiness, and they invited Shetty to coach them on well-being, purpose, and mindfulness. Since then, Shetty has become one of the world’s most popular influencers. In 2017, he was named in the Forbes magazine 30-under-30 for being a game-changer in the world of media. In 2018, he had the number one video on Facebook with more than 360 million views. His social media following totals more than 38 million, he has produced more than 400 viral videos that have amassed more than eight billion views, and his podcast, On Purpose , is consistently ranked the world’s number one health and wellness podcast. In this inspiring, empowering book, Shetty draws on his time as a monk to show us how we can clear the roadblocks to our potential and power. Combining ancient wisdom and his own rich experiences in the ashram, Think Like a Monk reveals how to overcome negative thoughts and habits and access the calm and purpose that lie within all of us. He transforms abstract lessons into advice and exercises we can all apply to reduce stress, improve relationships, and give the gifts we find in ourselves to the world. Shetty proves that everyone can - and should - think like a monk. PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the a.ccompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.
- Author: Jay Shetty
- Genre: Religion & Spirituality, Buddhism, Rituals & Practice
10. Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants
A New York Times Bestseller A Washington Post Bestseller Named a "Best Essay Collection of the Decade" by Literary Hub As a botanist, Robin Wall Kimmerer has been trained to ask questions of nature with the tools of science. As a member of the Citizen Potawatomi Nation, she embraces the notion that plants and animals are our oldest teachers. In Braiding Sweetgrass , Kimmerer brings these two lenses of knowledge together to take us on “a journey that is every bit as mythic as it is scientific, as sacred as it is historical, as clever as it is wise” (Elizabeth Gilbert). Drawing on her life as an indigenous scientist, and as a woman, Kimmerer shows how other living beings―asters and goldenrod, strawberries and squash, salamanders, algae, and sweetgrass―offer us gifts and lessons, even if we've forgotten how to hear their voices. In reflections that range from the creation of Turtle Island to the forces that threaten its flourishing today, she circles toward a central argument: that the awakening of ecological consciousness requires the acknowledgment and celebration of our reciprocal relationship with the rest of the living world. For only when we can hear the languages of other beings will we be capable of understanding the generosity of the earth, and learn to give our own gifts in return.
- Author: Robin Wall Kimmerer
- Publisher: Milkweed Editions; First Paperback edition (August 11, 2015)
- Genre: Politics & Social Sciences, Social Sciences
- ISBN: 978-1571313560
- Dimensions: 5.4 x 1 x 8.3 inches