by Stephen Law.
From Descartes to designer babies, The Philosophy Gym poses questions about some of history’s most important philosophical issues, ranging in difficulty from pretty easy to very challenging. He brings new perspectives to age-old conundrums while also tackling modern-day dilemmas — some for the first time. Begin your warm up by contemplating whether a pickled sheep can truly be considered art, or dive right in and tackle the existence of God. In this radically new way of looking at philosophy, Stephen Law illustrates the problem with a story, then lets the argument battle it out in clear, easily digestible and intelligent prose. This perfect little mental health club is sure to give each reader’s mind a great workout.
On my very first trip out of Australia, I encountered this book in an airport bookstore. I remember reading the blurb and being hooked. I unfortunately did not purchase this book but was so very lucky that my local library had a copy of another of Law’s books, The Philosophy Files. Years later, armed with my own credit card, The Philosophy Gym was one of the first books I bought.
While I had always been somewhat questioning in what I was told, The Philosophy Files and Gym opened my mind to a lot of established philosophical concepts and theorises. My mind was opened with the possibilities and unanswerable questions of the universe – and because of this book I quickly devoured so many more books about Philosophy.
I have recently found my copy of this book that I purchased a few years ago when I really needed a re-read, and have decided that yes, I should probably give this book another re-read 😋 While I don’t necessarily agreed with the inclusion of a chapter or two (looking at you ‘What’s Wrong with Gay Sex’ (nothing the book explains in very clears terms)) the books is meant to be a very basic start to some of the more difficult theoretical and philosophical concepts – so I suppose I must forgive it and hope that people who think like that are challenged to think further about the issue.
The best part of the book though, is the further reading sections at the end of the chapters which detail the original texts and also other readings or subjects that branch off of the concept discoursed.
The Philosophy Gym was a book that sparked a (so far) lifelong interest in philosophy. If you are looking for an easy book to start learning about the subject I would 100% recommend starting with any book by Stephen Law.
Are you a blogger who keeps telling themselves you’ll get around to writing reviews, but then don’t. Do you write ‘review to come’ on Goodreads only to let them languish for years? Well then, the blog feature ‘Long Lost Reviews‘ is for you.
The aim of the blog feature is to start tackling your review backlog. Whether it’s an in-depth analysis of how it affected your life, one sentence stating that you only remember the ending, or that you have no recollection of reading the book at all. Let’s tackle your review backlog and dig up some long lost reviews!
If you are interested in participating: post on the Second Thursday of the month, you are welcome to use the above icon, and all I ask is that you include a link to this post or to my blog. Thanks and happy writing!