New addition to the ISOC top ten reading list - "Why Can't we be Good?".
Needleman, Jacob, Why Can't we be Good? Tarcher/Penguin, 2007.
This has been a destiny book for me. What is a destiny book? - a book that changes your life. My other destiny books are listed in my top ten (not all of the top ten are my destiny books.)
It is also one of those life changing books that I discovered while browsing in a book store. Many of the most important books in my life have been discovered this way.
The most important benefit for me came in Chapter 7, "The Ethics of Attention". Needleman uses the book Mediations by Marcus Aurelius and a philosophy class he taught at San Francisco State University on "The Nature of Religious Experience" to introduce an exercise on a way to experience "a new kind of relationship to the things that annoy (and torment) you".
Needleman and Marcus Aurelius helped me discover what to do with the - little voice in my head, ego, self, thinking - that often rules my life with desires and fears. He helped me rediscover how "conscious attention ---- helps me have these desires and fears, but not be had by them" and helps me "cross the Socratic threshold".
He also examines the larger religious, political and cultural questions about "Why can't we be good?".
I read it most days because it works.
Buy the book and experience a master philosopher, writer, scholar, and teacher as he explores and answers the question "Why Can't we be Good?" (He goes far beyond the "As a man thinketh" school of thought.)
To see a video of Needleman discussing the book go to: FORA.tv - Why Can't We Be Good?
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