academia, Aristippus, Augustine, autobiography, Bhagavad Gītā, Confucius, David Hume, dharmaśāstra, Epicurus, Friedrich Nietzsche, G.W.F. Hegel, intimacy/integrity, Jeremy Bentham, Mozi, Siddhattha Gotama (Buddha), Thomas Aquinas, Thomas P. Kasulis, utilitarianism, Yoga Sūtras
One reason I turn back to premodern philosophies so much is that they often show us questions larger than those generally asked in philosophy today. Especially important among these: “what kind of life should I live?” What sorts of major life decisions should I make? It still surprises me how rarely academic philosophers concern themselves with these questions, when we spend so much time teaching people in their late teens and early twenties – for whom these questions are in the foreground.
Lately in my mind I’ve been tossing around the hypothesis that the answers to the question “What kind of life should I live?” roughly boil down to three – and that each of the three is tied to some sort of metaphysics, a theoretical as well as a practical philosophy: Continue reading