Books

 

Being and Circumstances

The human being undergoes a permanent fracture, between him and the world, between what he is and what he pretends to be, between reality and his expectations. And as we are obsessed by the concept of infinity, under various forms such as perfection, immortality or the absolute, we are brutally sent back to our own finitude, which makes existence even more difficult. Most of the time, these issues unfold unconsciously, which lead to painful consequences, generating a feeling of dissatisfaction and impotence. But if we make it the object of a deliberate reflection, despite the negative dimension of the content, we have access to ourselves, we engage in a true experience of being, free and joyful. The imposture is imposture only if we ignore its content and its presence, but by becoming a conscious object of reflection, the imposture takes the form of a regulating ideal.

 

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Philosophizing with Zhuangzi part 2

Zhuangzi was an influential Chinese philosopher who lived around the 4th century BC. He is credited with writing – at least in part – an opus known by his name, the Zhuangzi, which is one of the foundational texts of Taoism. It is composed of many strange little stories, written in order to make the reader think. Its primary function is to make us reflect on the illusory and even ridiculous aspects of our life, by criticizing numerous preoccupations, social and moral obligations, which are the cause of our psychological and cognitive misery. Our work consists of a selection of stories, accompanied with a philosophical analysis, organized around the key concepts of each story, including some background on Chinese culture. A series of questions is provided, in order for the reader to meditate on the content of the text.

 

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Philosophizing with Zhuangzi part 1

Zhuangzi was an influential Chinese philosopher who lived around the 4th century BC. He is credited with writing – at least in part – an opus known by his name, the Zhuangzi, which is one of the foundational texts of Taoism. It is composed of many strange little stories, written in order to make the reader think. Its primary function is to make us reflect on the illusory and even ridiculous aspects of our life, by criticizing numerous preoccupations, social and moral obligations, which are the cause of our psychological and cognitive misery. Our work consists of a selection of stories, accompanied with a philosophical analysis, organized around the key concepts of each story, including some background on Chinese culture. A series of questions is provided, in order for the reader to meditate on the content of the text.

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Day after Day II – Daily Aphorisms

One can philosophize through lengthy explanations and towering treaties. But there is another tradition: that of the aphorism, the art of the fragment. To make the reader think through one or a few brief sentences, a digest of thought that tries to capture in few words a vivid problematic, in a striking form. Often critical, ironic or mocking, this laconic form of philosophical expression is generous because it is trusting: the reader will understand mere implicit meaning, he will read between the lines. And when will be highlighted the sordid of the human soul, he will not be sad but joyful, for consciousness makes us free. The issue is to reconcile with our own finitude, to accept our own humanity, for better and for worse.

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Philosophical Consultation

Who am I? Where am I going? What is my vision of the world? How could I think differently? All these fundamental questions that must always be ignored, because we are caught up in the daily routine and obligations. The philosophical consultation is a thinking exercise, where the philosophical practitioner invites his interlocutor to settle down momentarily, in order to examine those fundamental questions. In this book, the author mentions different facets of this practice, describing its issues, its skills and difficulties. Various theoretical elements are presented, as well as the description and analysis of a session of consultation.

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Everybody Does It: Guidebook of Arguments Not to Be Used

Every day we commit logical fallacies in our speech, willingly or unwillingly, by accident or with a purpose. Argumentation mistakes constitute an important component of logical problems, what is often called informal logic. Many of these mistakes are popular, and rather visible if one pays any attention. In this text, we describe and analyze 27 of the most common fallacies encountered in daily life. Most of those mistakes, when underlined are easily understood. Intuitively, we recognize their nonsense, their weakness, their psychological implications. Rather than exposing subtle features, we will simply render the visible more visible.

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Learning to Philosophize with Russian Folk Tales

A common view is that folktales are for children. In general, this is not the case, let alone for Russian folktales. This becomes more obvious when we take a closer look at the rather violent content of these stories. Thus the challenge of this work is an attempt to reestablish the reality of these stories, intended primarily for the adult reader, by offering them accompanied by a philosophical analysis, as well as with questions inviting the amateur of tales to meditate further on the content of these narrations. Since one of the consequences of the infantilization of these stories is precisely that they tend to lose their function, which consists in making the listener reflect on the world, on humanity, on psychology, on himself etc. The allegories or metaphors they contain constitute in fact a kind of narrative philosophy, taking the form of fables or parables, all of which are meant to feed our thoughts. Of course, without excluding children.

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The Art of Philosophical Practice

The emerging of new practices in the domain of philosophy, motivated by the desire to philosophize, which is expressed by the wider public since a few years, leads us to ponder the nature of this philosophizing, perhaps, in part, to answer those who question the legitimacy of this recent popularization of the philosophical impulse. In order to better capture its manifold manifestations, the present work will approach this new phenomenon from various angles: from the angle of the attitudes, as astonishment or radicality (fundamentalism), for example; also, from the angle of the skills involved therein, like analysis or argumentation, or again like problematization and conceptualization. But, we will also discuss about dialectic, intuition, philosophical consultation and so on.

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Wisdom of Sufi Tales

COVER SUFI TALESIs life a test? Should we always tell the truth? Is old age a calamity? Is difference a problem? Do we love someone or do we love love? To address these issues, 20 stories from the Sufi tradition are proposed as a basis for reflection. Then come ten comprehension questions, in order to deepen the meaning of the various narratives and interpret their content. Ten more questions invite us to meditate on more general issues emanating from these texts. Through this anthology, the reader is invited to discover a spirituality that defines itself as “the heart” of the Muslim tradition, an inner path of Islam, just as a contemplative and poetic art of living.

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Wisdom of Zen Tales

COVER ZENS TALESShould we learn to be bored? Do we thirst for infinity? Should we give up ourselves in order to be free? Does fear prevent us from living? Should perfection be sought? ? To address these questions, 20 stories from the Japanese tradition of Zen, or Chinese Chan, are proposed as a basis for reflection. Then come ten comprehension questions, in order to deepen the meaning of the various narratives and interpret their content. Ten more questions invite us to meditate on more general issues emanating from these texts. Through this anthology, the reader is invited to discover the meditative wisdom of this branch of Buddhism which particularly cultivates the luminous and liberating simplicity of the mind.

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Wisdom of Buddhist Tales

COVER BUDDHIST TALESShould we seek to know everything? Are we responsible for what is happening to us? Can we control our emotions? Should we suffer in order to realize ourselves? Is the essential urgent? To address these questions, 20 stories are proposed, which emanate from the Buddhist tradition, in India: tales, parables, or Jatakas that tell the many lives of the Buddha. Then come ten comprehension questions, in order to deepen the meaning of the various narratives and interpret their content. Ten more questions invite us to meditate on more general issues emanating from these texts. Through this anthology, the reader is invited to discover the depth and subtlety of original Buddhist thought.

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Apology of Metaphysics 

Metaphysics oscillate between an erudite or religious sacralisation, and a rejection for cause of uselessness or difficulty. Although, through its dimension of gratuitousness and distance, it allows us to think the world and ourselves, to think our thinking, to contemplate its limits, its structures, its articulations. Without dogma or fear, it invites us to tackle the thinkable and the unthinkable. In this treatise, our object is not to defend a thesis, but to enjoy the very exercise of thinking, in all its reversals, by extracting ourself from evidence, by avoiding as much as possible the short-circuits of thought. That is what we name the art of conversion.

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Day after Day: 365 Aphorisms

BOOK OF APHORISMS COVER (FINAL VERSION)One can philosophize through lengthy explanations and towering treaties. But there is another tradition: that of the aphorism, the art of the fragment. To make the reader think through one or a few brief sentences, a digest of thought that tries to capture in few words a vivid problematic, in a striking form. Often critical, ironic or mocking, this laconic form of philosophical expression is generous because it is trusting: the reader will understand mere implicit meaning, he will read between the lines. And when will be highlighted the sordid of the human soul, he will not be sad but joyful, for consciousness makes us free. The issue is to reconcile with our own finitude, to accept our own humanity, for better and for worse.

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Learning to Philosophize with Nasreddin Hodja

Nasreddin_ENGTales are traditionally a way to transmit wisdom and make everyone think. This is definitely the case with Nasreddin Hodja, a hero known throughout the Muslim world for his absurd, caricatural and hilarious narrations. Each story carries some kind of problematic about human existence, actions or behavior, about the order of the world and epistemological issues. In this book, we present twelve narrations bearing on problems such as being and appearance, truth and pretention, knowledge and ignorance, choosing and responsibility, etc. Each one will be followed by a philosophical analysis and two series of questions in order to meditate: understanding questions and reflection questions. Finally, an exercise that bears on the particular theme. An exciting philosophical adventure for either children or adults.

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The Practice of Philosophy with Children

PHILOSOPHIZE WITH CHILDRENThe idea of ​​practicing philosophy with children is considered rather surprising, since young adults who have to engage in it already have a difficult time with this strange activity. The author of this book wonders in an opposite manner: When you are eighteen, is it not almost too late to start philosophizing?

To philosophize it to learn to think, to think consciously, by oneself, through the others, it is to deepen and to analyze ideas and problems. Throughout this book, many practical and theoretical suggestions are provided for the teacher or the parent who thinks that it is never too early too learn how to think, who believes that the questioning of the child should be valued and encouraged.
 
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Notebook of Philosophical Exercises

Ex ENG notebook coverThis book contains a number of philosophical exercises that can be realized alone or in a group, by adults or children. They are classified in terms of difficulty, and by the nature of the skill needed to work through it. This work allows clarifying the numerous mental gestures that characterize thinking: argumentation, analysis, interpretation, problematization, conceptualization, etc. An introduction provides some tips on their realization, particularly for the teacher who wishes to introduce such a practice as a pedagogical tool.

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