Life is Hard

This is a thoughtful, personal and wise book that tackles the human experiences of infirmity, loneliness, grief, failure, injustice, absurdity and hope through a philosophical lens.  Setiya draws on the great philosophers of the ages, not always siding with them, pitting them against each other, questioning their assumptions and the social context which informed theirContinue reading “Life is Hard”

The Grieving Brain

“Grieving requires the difficult task of throwing out the map we have used to navigate our lives together and transforming our relationship with this person who has died.”  Why is it so difficult for us to comprehend that a person is gone forever? Why do some people adapt better than others? How can we rebuildContinue reading “The Grieving Brain”

The Keys to Kindness

There is more kindness than we think there is in the world and we can all find ways to be more kind. This is a gentle book that sets out to help us understand what kindness is, how we define it in different contexts, what it does for us and how to help make ourContinue reading “The Keys to Kindness”

My Age of Anxiety

“Fear sharpens the senses. Anxiety paralyses them” – Kurt Goldstein.  Is anxiety a medical illness or a cognitive mis-wiring, a philosophical or a spiritual problem or a cultural condition explored by poets?  Scott Stossel explores how anxiety is a function of all of these. It can be measured physiologically, it can be measured as aContinue reading “My Age of Anxiety”

What I Talk About When I Talk About Running

When one takes up a hobby, it is hard to not want to be the absolute best in a short amount of time. The frustration at realising that we cannot get there fast, or possibly ever, is sometimes enough to abandon the cause altogether. Yet, what is it about a person that makes them keepContinue reading “What I Talk About When I Talk About Running”

The Order of Time

In this small book filled with giant ideas, Carlo Rovelli gently teases apart everything we take for granted about the concept of time. That it travels in a linear direction from the past to the future, that it exists independent of us, that we are subjected to it and at its mercy. One would notContinue reading “The Order of Time”

21 Lessons for the 21st Century

“Humans were always far better at inventing tools than using them wisely.” This is essentially the theme of this collection of essays. Not just technological tools but also our social and political systems, our fictions that hold up society and so on. Harari’s strength lies in interlacing ideas from multiple disciplines as though connecting diverseContinue reading “21 Lessons for the 21st Century”

Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui

This is a simple but revelatory guide to freeing yourself from patterns, habits and the past by assessing your relationship with everything you own.  It outlines how clutter affects you – from keeping you in the past to making you feel tired and overwhelmed to even manifesting as extra body weight and it explores theContinue reading “Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui”

How to Build a Car

As a new fan of Formula 1, I had never heard of Adrian Newey.  Karun Chandok, one of the F1 commentators, mentioned this book on air and it seemed like an interesting way to gain a better understanding of the the sport and its cars. It turns out Newey is instrumental in designing the changingContinue reading “How to Build a Car”

Friends

In the last few years, most of us have taken stock of our relationships and have either strengthened or mourned changing dynamics. Yet, we don’t necessarily understand what creates these changes – whether it’s ultra personal to us or simply the nature of our social fabric.  Friends are good for us – they make usContinue reading “Friends”