Philosophical books often don’t win many prizes. They can be difficult, abstruse, antiquated, or just plain boring. Most of us realize the power and the merit of reading in the field of philosophy, but are wary of picking up a Nietzsche book. Now, I do recommend the readable and fairly wide-ranging book Philosophy for Dummies, by public philosopher extraordinaire, Tom Morris, Ph.D. However, that is only going to take you so far because it is necessarily wide in its breadth. It’s a good “Cliff’s Notes” version of the field of philosophy, but it isn’t as deep in the area of applied philosophy as you are probably needing. That is where Values of the Wise comes in.
Philosophical books are a tough nut to crack. My name is Jason Merchey, and I’ve been reading at the college level for 25 years. I have come across many works of philosophy, quite a number of psychology textbooks, and maintained an interest in sociology, economics, political science, Western civilization, and so on. I pride myself on having pursued a liberal education and reading far and wide. I get through dozens of books, many magazines, and countless webzines every year. I own over a dozen lecture series from The Great Courses. My point is not that I am a genius or anything; far from it. If I were a genius, a polymath, a prodigy, I probably wouldn’t have the perspective I do. Having not obtained a Ph.D. or even a bachelor’s degree in philosophy, I am an amateur. Yet, I have sustained an interest in philosophical books for well over two decades. This gives me a unique vantage point to know what the panorama looks like. I have enough conversance with ethics, personal growth, psychology, existentialism, and the like to know what a good quote is, what a readable book is, and what subjects and concepts are worth tuning into. I am like an ambassador for folks who haven’t traveled quite as far. I’m the middle rungs on a long ladder and I am looking up at brilliant philosophers and literary geniuses and great thinkers from the past and present. I would like to claim I am a virtuoso, but it ain’t so. Hey look – I’m a poet and I didn’t even know it! In my case, I’m playing the hand I have been dealt. You can benefit, though.
Here is how. I have read so far and wide that I have been exposed to many different (disparate and diverse) ideas, but I have also done one thing that most have not: I have been wielding a pencil the whole way. Ever since my first philosophy 101 class at Cypress College, age 18, I have kept notes. One could fairly say I have been obsessed. What’s in it for you? Well, I have created a vast library of quotations on values, quotes about wisdom, and ideas in ethics. That is yours to use for free. That is my primary way of helping you to help yourself. It is called The Wisdom Archive. Check it out; you won’t be disappointed.
Here is the second tool I make available to you (for a very reasonable cost): three philosophical books. Ranging in price from $5.99 to $19.99, 1) VALUES & ETHICS: FROM LIVING ROOM TO BOARDROOM, 2) BUILDING A LIFE OF VALUE: TIMELESS WISDOM TO INSPIRE AND EMPOWER US, and 3) LIVING A LIFE OF VALUE are three philosophical books you don’t want to miss. Let me tell you about each of them:
VALUES & ETHICS: FROM LIVING ROOM TO BOARDROOM is the challenging, thought-provoking conversation-starter you’ve been looking for. It will bring you to a place where dialogue thrives and ancient wisdom and progressive thinking are brought to life. This most recent addition to The Values of the Wise Series will help you escape the world’s hustle and bustle and think about what truly matters: a life of value. Available as a Soft Cover Book, Downloadable PDF, or a 50-page Preview Version PDF. “Values & Ethics: From Living Room to Boardroom is a really impressive book.” – Michael P. Hendrix, Ph.D., Historian and Assistant Director of the Academic Support Center at The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina; author of The History of Fort Sumter: Building a Civil War Landmark
BUILDING A LIFE OF VALUE: TIMELESS WISDOM TO INSPIRE AND EMPOWER US is the flagship of the Values of the Wise Series. More than just a book of quotations, Building a Life of Value is a fusion of great thinking – from classical to contemporary, from philosophical to poetic. Highlighted with thought-provoking essays by Jason Merchey, these words of wisdom will help you to “build a life of value” and thus become the architect of your life. This is a very well-reviewed book and is classic.
LIVING A LIFE OF VALUE is a significant book that posits that values play an important role in one’s life. Values contribute directly to quality of life – ends such as success, health, happiness, and legacy. When you pursue your own values passionately, your life has value – to you, as well as to the people and world around you. Living a life of value is about finding fulfillment doing what makes you feel good while doing good. The unique book is a fusion of classical ideas and progressive goals, and the anthology features 75 remarkable writings that shine light on what it means to live a life of value. The fascinating contributors to this book herald positive and solid values: the values of the wise. Following each story, you will find a selection of diverse and relevant quotations that encourage thought, reflection, and insight. Indeed, Living a Life of Value will provide a deeper and broader basis for what you believe, feel, and value. Its aim is to inspire wisdom – and therefore, to improve the world. It is a unique collection of contemporary writings that brings a fresh perspective to values, morality, and wisdom.
Well, there you have the three philosophical books in my quiver. They are all very readable, remarkably broad, of penetrating depth, and easy to access. What I mean by that is that in all three books, one needn’t read from cover to cover to finally get the idea. Instead, each chapter is a different look at values, wisdom, and ethics. In the first book, each of the 20 chapters is a separate interview with an expert on a particular value. In the second, each chapter is about two or three related values – such as Truth & Justice or Honor, Integrity & Morality. Just choose which “ValueSet” you are interested in on a given day and dig in. No need to use a bookmark; pick back up anywhere you wish at a later date. It takes a lifetime to really get some of the concepts and make the full progress studying philosophical books, so it’s not something one can do in a weekend. In the third book, there are 75 wonderful essays/stories/articles written by some famous and not-so-famous individuals who have authoritative knowledge in a particular area. Here is the list. In sum, if you want a look at philosophy where it meets personal growth and psychology and inspirational quotes, these books are for you! Look them up on Amazon here or Facebook here.
I call myself a philosophical thinker and an independent scholar. Values of the Wise.com has been online for the last 13 years and I foresee another 33 years! Learn more about me here.
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