Philosophy as a Way of Life

Spiritual Exercises from Socrates to Foucault

Ranked #17 in Stoicism

This book presents a history of spiritual exercises from Socrates to early Christianity, an account of their decline in modern philosophy, and a discussion of the different conceptions of philosophy that have accompanied the trajectory and fate of the theory and practice of spiritual exercises. Hadot's book demonstrates the extent to which philosophy has been, and still is, above all else a way of seeing and of being in the world. less

Reviews and Recommendations

We've comprehensively compiled reviews of Philosophy as a Way of Life from the world's leading experts.

Peter Brown One of Peter Brown’s first books was a biography of Augustine in 1967. He then wrote a book about late antiquity in the early 1970s. He’s an example of someone who wears his learning very lightly. (Source)

Jules Evans Pierre Hadot is not that well known, but the people who are aware of him really love and value his work. He was a French academic, a specialist in Neo-Platonist mysticism. One day he went into his local bakery, looked around at the people queuing for bread and thought: Neo-Platonist mysticism means nothing to these people and is not much use to them. So he started to become interested in the more practical philosophy of the Stoics and the Epicureans, and this idea of ancient philosophy not as abstract theory but as a way of life, something that ordinary people can practise every day to live... (Source)

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