Wednesday, December 18, 2013

The Conquest of Happiness by Bertrand Russell (1930)

"He forgets to be without some of the things you want is an indispensable part of happiness."

"Success can only be one ingredient in happiness, and is too dearly purchased if all the other ingredients have been sacrificed to obtain it."

"There are two motives for reading a book:  one, that you enjoy it; the other that you can boast about it."

"A happy life must be to a great extent quiet life, for it is only in an atmosphere of quiet that true joy can live."

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Fail. A month into this, and I only have half it read.  I don't have a happy life apparently, because I can't seem to find some quiet time to read this small yet dense book.  There is too much here to simply read it at lunch or trying to fall asleep at night.  I want to savor it, and can't.  What I've read I like, immensely.  I think this is funny, sometimes biting, witty, a wee snarky, and also has some grains of truth. My takeaway from half the book is that I'd probably be happier if I had some down time.  Maybe someday I'll have to come back to it.  For now, abandoning it.  Like Cicero and others - I think I have a thing for being unable to fully comprehend philosophy without leading some sort of monk-like existence.


The Conquest of HappinessThe Conquest of Happiness by Bertrand Russell


I read half of this, and liked it immensely.  But life got in the way of finishing it.  I need some decent down time to read deeply and absorb this book, and the holidays aren't going to give me that luxury!  Will have to return to this book in the future.


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