Alain de Botton: ‘Cynics are only idealists with awkwardly high standards’

“…a decision to avoid people shouldn’t imply that one has no desire whatever for company. It may simply reflect a dissatisfaction with what is available. Cynics are only idealists with awkwardly high standards. In Chamfort’s words: ‘It is sometimes said of a man who lives alone that he does not like society. This is like […]

‘Writing a book is like telling a joke…’

Writing a book is like telling a joke and having to wait two years to know whether or not it was funny. Alain de Botton True, books can’t be instantly graded like a Tweet. But giving a book at least two years of work enables the author to go deeper and explore the magic wand […]

Alain de Botton — A School of Life for Atheists

On the latest On Being podcast with Krista Tippett, philosopher and best-selling author Alain de Botton talks about his new book Religion for Atheists: A Non-believer’s Guide to the Uses of Religion. Alain de Botton is an atheist, but his perspective on religion is far more complicated. Instead of debunking religion in thinking that all […]

Prompt cards

Brian Eno’s Oblique Strategies has been helping people defeat their creative block since the mid-1970s. But Alain de Botton’s The School of Life is taking the concept a bit further and applying the deadlock to other life’s philosophies such as a career crisis, kindness, self-knowledge, calm and confidence. You may also like:

We’re all weird

Inspired by Alain de Button’s tweet, below is a collection of highlights of the word weird from Seth Godin’s 2011 book, We’re All Weird. Weird by choice, on the other hand, flies in the face of the culture of mass and the checklist of normal. The epic battle of our generation is between the status quo […]

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