A Little History of Philosophy, by Nigel Warburton

西方哲學書

前鎮子Shawn回台灣時買了不少書帶回巴黎看,其中讓他收穫不少的是飲茶的《史上最強哲學入門。哲學這種東西看來令人想討論,因此在他慫恿之下我也買了我的英文版的西方哲學入門書。坦白說大學時期我曾經對哲學好奇過,買了一本關人生意義的書,MY GOD it was so boring…我看了1/4就看不下去了,部份難懂、部份無聊。怕這次又犯同樣的錯,我在書店逛了蠻久的,下定決心要挑一本有趣又易懂的入門哲學書。成功!

心得
Style: 我還蠻喜歡這本書的,它是個西方哲學的入門書,依照時間順序介紹從西元2500年古希臘至今的重要哲學家和思考,共分成40個哲學家和章節,而每個章節都用有趣的小故事或思考遊戲來介紹各個哲學家的中心思考。我從來沒想到哲學書可以如此有趣和易懂,writing style也很直接和親切,絕對是個easy read。

Takeaway:
1. 一開始以為書只關哲學,沒想到其實(like so many things in life)它跟宗教、政治、科學和歷史有多麼大的關連和影響力。看完後不但覺得對哲學的歷史有多一點點了解之外,也覺得重新上了歷史課,復習古代文化的演變。
2. 因西方哲學的大部份思考都關人生意義/目標、如何生活、神/世界/人的存在和關係等,其實沒有很多思想是我重視或對我特別有意義的(算是我不愛想太多?)反而我覺得有趣並且會想進一步了解的哲學家都是稍微跟政治或科學有關的。以下列出印象最深刻的幾個思想(個人筆記, 懶得翻譯):
– Aristotle (384 BC): “One swallow doesn’t make a summer", meaning a few moments of pleasure don’t add up to true happiness. Therefore we should seek ‘eudaimonia’, to flourish. We need to develop the right kind of character. Instead of increase pleasure in life, we should try to become better people and do the right thing.
– The Stoics (100 AD): we are responsible for what we feel and think, it’s a matter of choice. It’s not how short our lives are, but how badly most of us use what time we have. →似乎有點像 “The glass is half empty/full" 看法?
– Rene Descartes (1596): Method of Cartesian Doubt. “I think, therefore I am". →看來我一直都誤解這句話的意思哈!Don’t accept anything as true if there’s the slightest possibility it’s not. So, (to prove my existence) I can think, therefore I do exist.
– Charles Darwin (1859): published ‘On the Origin of Species’. →以前哲學=宗教,自從這本書published之後許多哲學家開始否認有神的存在。
– Karl Marx (1848): wrote ‘The Communist Manifesto’ (‘from each according to his ability, to each according to his need"). He believed capitalism would destroy itself. It created the basis for Russia’s oppressive and corrupt politics.
– Sigmund Freud (1939): discovered the unconscious, big leap in philosophy and science.
– Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir (1945): ‘Existentialism’: human beings exist and are free, we don’t have an essence like tools do.

All in all, 簡單、易懂、收穫很多。推薦!:)

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