Antifragile

Written on September 8, 2016. Written by .

Something is “antifragile” if it gains from disorder/uncertainty/randomness, as opposed to “robust” things that neither gain nor lose from disorder/uncertainty/randomness. I think this is an interesting concept that I hadn’t heard of or thought about before reading this book. Taleb discusses some ideas for how to apply the concept of antifragility to your life and […]

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The Myth of Freedom

Written on February 7, 2016. Written by .

Although this book was fairly down-to-earth relative to most Buddhist texts, I didn’t really get much out of it. It primarily focused on discussing psychological tendencies of people in general during the course of their daily lives. It had a more pessimistic/negative tone than other books of this type and I found it somewhat boring. […]

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A Guide to the Good Life: The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy

Written on January 9, 2013. Written by .

This book gives an academic’s overview of Stoic philosophy. It is written with an emphasis on practical advice, though there is also quite a bit of historical context added in. The main pieces of advice were negative visualization, internalizing goals, and voluntary discomfort. There were also many other points that weren’t as general, but still […]

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The Road to Serfdom

Written on January 2, 2012. Written by .

Hayek is a legendary figure in the debate over economic policy. In The Road to Serfdom, Hayek provides extensive arguments in favor of what he calls “liberalism”, which he notes has become to mean the opposite of what it originally meant. His definition of liberalism is based on the same root as “liberty”, which is […]

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Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal

Written on July 4, 2011. Written by .

This book contains two parts: 1. Theory and History, 2. Current State. The first part was a good overview of Rand’s philosophy and had some interesting arguments for capitalism. The second part was mostly a rant with less interesting content. The chapters are each independent articles, some written by other authors, so there is some […]

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Just Work

Written on July 4, 2011. Written by .

This book discusses the issue of work in general, that is the fact that most people are effectively forced into jobs that they may or may not want to be in. The book upset me at the beginning when it seemed to advocate a guaranteed minimum wage for everyone without discussing the implementation at all. […]

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What is Zen

Written on July 3, 2011. Written by .

This was a really short little book that talks about some of the basic concepts in Zen. It is the type of book that doesn’t try to be comprehensive or organized, but just picks and chooses a few of the more interesting things to discuss. Watts does a good job of making Zen more understandable […]

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The Way of Zen

Written on July 3, 2011. Written by .

Although this book wasn’t organized the way I would have preferred, it still did contain a great deal of insight into the philosophy of Zen Buddhism. I was able to piece together a fairly detailed picture of Zen by compiling scattered notes from several different chapters. ★★★★★

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The Unabomber Manifesto

Written on July 3, 2011. Written by .

I totally agree with the gripes that he had about society, but I completely disagree as to the scale of the problem and his proposed solutions. He acted as if there was no way to enjoy life given the problems of society, but I think there is still plenty of room for living an enjoyable […]

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In Praise of Idleness and Other Essays

Written on July 3, 2011. Written by .

I was initially drawn to this book while looking for support for my argument that “future worship” is a major problem. I really liked the main essay, particularly the pin factory example that illustrates the problems with the labor market when people are too willing to work long hours. Unfortunately some of the other essays […]

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