No Excuses: Existentialism and the Meaning of Life [TTC Video]

No Excuses: Existentialism and the Meaning of Life [TTC Video]
No Excuses: Existentialism and the Meaning of Life [TTC Video] by Robert C Solomon
Course No 437| AVI, DivX, 640x480 | MP3, 128 kbps, 2 Ch | 24x30 mins | + PDF Guidebook | 4.12GB

The message of Existentialism, unlike that of many more obscure and academic philosophical movements, is about as simple as can be. It is that every one of us, as an individual, is responsible—responsible for what we do, responsible for who we are, responsible for the way we face and deal with the world, responsible, ultimately, for the way the world is.

It is, in a very short phrase, the philosophy of 'No excuses!' We cannot shift that burden onto God, or nature, or the ways of the world."
—Professor Robert Solomon

If you believe that life should be a quest for values, reasons, and purpose—filled with passion and governed by individual responsibility—then yours is the sort of mind to which the Existentialist philosophers were speaking.

More than a half-century after it burst upon the intellectual scene, Existentialism has continued to exert a profound attraction for individuals driven to re-examine life's most fundamental questions of individual responsibility, morality, and personal freedom.

  • What is life?
  • What is my place in it?
  • What choices does this obligate me to make?

If you want to enrich your own understanding of this unique philosophical movement, the visionary thinkers it brought together to ponder these questions, and the prominent role it still plays in contemporary thought, you now have an opportunity to do so with this 24-lecture course.

Professor Solomon is Quincy Lee Centennial Professor of Business and Philosophy at The University of Texas at Austin. He has written several books on a variety of philosophical topics that have been translated into more than a dozen languages.

He is the recipient of teaching awards and honors, including the Standard Oil Outstanding Teaching Award, The University of Texas Presidential Associates' Teaching Award (twice), a Fulbright Lecture Award, University Research and National Endowment for the Humanities grants, and the Chad Oliver Plan II Teaching Award. He is also a member of the Academy of Distinguished Teachers.

What is Existentialism?

Existentialism is a movement, a "sensibility" that can be traced throughout the history of Western philosophy. Its central themes are:

  • Significance of the individual
  • Importance of passion
  • Irrational aspects of life
  • Importance of human freedom.

"Existentialism is, in my view, the most exciting and important philosophical movement of the past century and a half," states Professor Solomon.

"Fifty years after the French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre gave it its identity, and 150 years after the Danish philosopher Søren Kierkegaard gave it its initial impetus, Existentialism continues to win new enthusiasts and, in keeping with its still exciting and revolutionary message, vehement critics."

In this series you:

  • Explore the religious Existentialism of Kierkegaard
  • Hear the warrior rhetoric and often-shocking claims about religion and morality of Nietzsche
  • Absorb the bold and profound fiction of Camus
  • Comprehend the radical and uncompromising notion of freedom championed by Sartre
  • Consider the searching analysis of human historicity and finitude offered by Martin Heidegger.

You see how these thinkers relate to one another and to the larger tradition of philosophy itself.

Beyond Its Basic Message, Nothing Straightforward About It

To say that the basic message of Existentialism is quite simple and straightforward is not to say that the philosophers or the philosophies that make up the movement are simple and straightforward.

The movement itself is something of a fabrication. None of the major Existentialist figures—only excepting Sartre—would recognize themselves as part of a "movement" at all. Kierkegaard and Nietzsche were both ferocious individualists who vehemently rejected all movements.

Heidegger was deeply offended when he was linked with Sartre as one of the Existentialists, and he publicly denounced the association. Camus and Sartre once were friends, but they quarreled over politics and Camus publicly rejected the association.

The Existentialists' writings, too, are by no means simple and straightforward. Kierkegaard and Nietzsche write well but in challenging, often disjointed exhortations.

Heidegger is among the most difficult writers in the entire history of philosophy, and even Sartre—a lucid literary writer when he wants to be—imitates some of the worst elements of Heidegger's notorious style.

Much of the challenge of this course of lectures, accordingly, is to free the exciting and revolutionary message of Existentialism from its often formidable textual enclosures.

The Great Existentialist Writers

Albert Camus, Lectures 1–6. After an introduction to Existentialism, the course begins with a discussion of the 20th-century writer and philosopher Camus (1913-60). Chronologically, Camus is late in the game (you trace Existentialist ideas as far back as Kierkegaard and Nietzsche in the mid-19th century).

You start with his most famous novel, The Stranger, published in the early 1940s. You also examine The Myth of Sisyphus, in which he introduces his infamous concept of "The Absurd"; The Plague; and The Fall.

Professor Solomon's aim in opening with Camus is to "set a certain mood for the rest of the course, a rebellious, restless, yet thoroughly conscientious mood, which I believe Camus exemplifies both in his writings and in his life."

Søren Kierkegaard, Lectures 7–9. Danish philosopher Kierkegaard (1813-55) was a deeply religious philosopher—a pious Christian—and his Existentialist thought was devoted to the question, "What does it mean to be—or rather, what does it mean to become—a Christian?"

"We should thus be advised that, contrary to some popular misunderstandings, Existentialism is by no means an antireligious or unspiritual philosophy. It can and often does embrace God, as well as a host of visions of the world that we can, without apology, call spiritual," notes Dr. Solomon.

Friedrich Nietzsche, Lectures 10–13 . Nietzsche (1844–1900) is perhaps best known for his bold declaration "God is dead." He is also well known as a self-proclaimed "immoralist."

In fact, both of these phrases are misleading, argues Dr. Solomon. Nietzsche was by no means the first person to say that God is dead (Martin Luther had said it three centuries before), and Nietzsche himself was anything but an immoral person.

Fyodor Dostoevsky, Franz Kafka, Hermann Hesse, Lecture 14. Professor Solomon turns briefly to three diverse figures from literature who display Existentialist themes and temperaments in their works: Dostoevsky (1821–81), the great Russian novelist; Kafka (1883–1924), the brilliant Czech novelist and story writer; and Hermann Hesse (1877–1962), a 20th-century Swiss writer who combined a fascination with Asian philosophy with a profoundly Nietzschean interest and temperament.

Edmund Husserl, Lecture 15. The German-Czech philosopher Husserl (1859–1938) invented a philosophical technique called "phenomenology." Husserl is not an Existentialist, but you study him because of his influence on Heidegger and Sartre, both of whom, at the beginning of their careers, considered themselves phenomenologists.

Jean-Paul Sartre, Lectures 18–23. Professor Solomon suggests that much of what is best in Postmodernism is taken more or less directly from Sartre (1905–80), despite the fact that he is typically attacked as the very antithesis of Postmodernism.

Existentialism, Dr. Solomon argues, was and is not just another French intellectual fashion but a timely antidote to some of the worst self-(mis)understandings of the end of the century.

The series concludes with a comparison and contrast with French philosophy since Sartre's time.

No Excuses: Existentialism and the Meaning of Life [TTC Video]

The New York Times Book of the Dead: 320 Print and 10,000 Digital Obituaries of Extraordinary People [EPUB]

The New York Times Book of the Dead: 320 Print and 10,000 Digital Obituaries of Extraordinary People [EPUB]
The New York Times Book of the Dead: 320 Print and 10,000 Digital Obituaries of Extraordinary People edited by William McDonald
2016 | EPUB | 14.5MB

The obituary page of The New York Times is a celebration of extraordinary lives. This groundbreaking package includes 300 obits in the book with exclusive online access to 10,000 more of the most important and fascinating obituaries the Times has ever published.

The Times' obituary editor, William McDonald, selected 320 of the most important and influential obits from the newspaper's archives. In chapters like "Stage and Screen," "Titans of Business," "The Notorious," "Scientists and Healers," "Athletes," and "American Leaders," the entries include a wide variety of newsmakers from the last century and a half, including Annie Oakley, Theodore Roosevelt, Joseph Stalin, Marilyn Monroe, Coco Chanel, Malcolm X, Jackie Robinson and Prince.

Prepper's Guide to Knots: The 100 Most Useful Tying Techniques for Surviving any Disaster [EPUB]

Prepper's Guide to Knots: The 100 Most Useful Tying Techniques for Surviving any Disaster [EPUB]
Prepper's Guide to Knots: The 100 Most Useful Tying Techniques for Surviving any Disaster by Scott Finazzo
2016 | EPUB | 46.29MB

WHEN YOUR LIFE, HOME, AND PROPERTY ARE HANGING BY A THREAD, THESE ARE THE KNOTS TOO STRONG TO BREAK

When catastrophe strikes and modern technologies fail, ropework skills will become as essential for survival as they were for centuries past. The variety of knots taught in this book are guaranteed to hold against even the toughest forces, ensuring that an emergency doesn’t turn into a disaster. When your life, home, and property are hanging by a thread, these powerful knots are too strong to break:

  • Create sturdy shelter with a HARNESS BEND
  • Preserve sacks of grain with a BAG KNOT
  • Move fallen trees with a BOWLINE
  • Transport injured persons with a MUNTER HITCH
  • Secure your home against intruders with a ZEPPELIN BEND
  • Hang rations above floodwater with a SCAFFOLD KNOT

Prepper’s Guide to Knots features clear, step-by-step instructions on tying each knot. It also provides information on selecting the right type of rope, the history of ropework and the specific benefits of each knot.

The Populist Explosion: How the Great Recession Transformed American and European Politics [EPUB]

The Populist Explosion: How the Great Recession Transformed American and European Politics [EPUB]
The Populist Explosion: How the Great Recession Transformed American and European Politics by John B Judis
2016 | EPUB | 0.7MB

What's happening in global politics, and is there a thread that ties it all together? As if overnight, many Democrats revolted and passionately backed a socialist named Bernie Sanders; the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union, in a stunning rebuke; the vituperative billionaire Donald Trump became the presidential nominee of the Republican Party; and a slew of rebellious parties continued to win election after election in countries like Switzerland, Norway, Italy, Austria, and Greece.

John B. Judis, one of America's most respected political analysts, tells us why we need to understand the populist movement that began in the United States in the 1890s and whose politics have recurred on both sides of the Atlantic ever since. The Populist Explosion is essential reading for anyone hoping to grasp a global political system that is only just beginning what will be a long-running and highly consequential readjustment.

The Economist Audio Edition [December 17, 2016]

The Economist Audio Edition [December 17, 2016]
The Economist Audio Edition [December 17, 2016]
MP3@48 kbps + EPUB + AZW3 | 163.74MB

The fall of Aleppo: Putin's victory, the West's failure

  • China's digital dictatorship
  • Psychoanalyzing Park Geun-hye
  • The uselessness of management theory
  • Inside DeepMind
  • U.S.: Russian interference -- The plot against America
  • S&T: Oncology-- Cancer's master criminals
  • S&T: Drug addiction -- Souring the poppy's milk

The Sound of the One Hand: 281 Zen Koans with Answers [EPUB]

The Sound of the One Hand: 281 Zen Koans with Answers [EPUB]
The Sound of the One Hand: 281 Zen Koans with Answers edited and translated by Yoel Hoffman
2016 | EPUB | 2.71MB

When The Sound of the One Hand came out in Japan in 1916 it caused a scandal. Zen was a secretive practice, its wisdom relayed from master to novice in strictest privacy. That a handbook existed recording not only the riddling koans that are central to Zen teaching but also detailing the answers to them seemed to mark Zen as rote, not revelatory.

For all that, The Sound of the One Hand opens the door to Zen like no other book. Including koans that go back to the master who first brought the koan teaching method from China to Japan in the eighteenth century, this book offers, in the words of the translator, editor, and Zen initiate Yoel Hoffmann, “the clearest, most detailed, and most correct picture of Zen” that can be found. What we have here is an extraordinary introduction to Zen thought as lived thought, a treasury of problems, paradoxes, and performance that will appeal to artists, writers, and philosophers as well as Buddhists and students of religion.

Genghis Khan and the Quest for God: How the World's Greatest Conqueror Gave Us Religious Freedom [EPUB]

Genghis Khan and the Quest for God: How the World's Greatest Conqueror Gave Us Religious Freedom [EPUB]
Genghis Khan and the Quest for God: How the World's Greatest Conqueror Gave Us Religious Freedom by Jack Weatherford
2016 | EPUB | 1.93MB

A landmark biography by the New York Times bestselling author of Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World that reveals how Genghis harnessed the power of religion to rule the largest empire the world has ever known.

Throughout history the world's greatest conquerors have made their mark not just on the battlefield, but in the societies they have transformed. Genghis Khan conquered by arms and bravery, but he ruled by commerce and religion. He created the world's greatest trading network and drastically lowered taxes for merchants, but he knew that if his empire was going to last, he would need something stronger and more binding than trade. He needed religion. And so, unlike the Christian, Taoist and Muslim conquerors who came before him, he gave his subjects freedom of religion. Genghis lived in the 13th century, but he struggled with many of the same problems we face today: How should one balance religious freedom with the need to reign in fanatics? Can one compel rival religions - driven by deep seated hatred--to live together in peace?

A celebrated anthropologist whose bestselling Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World radically transformed our understanding of the Mongols and their legacy, Jack Weatherford has spent eighteen years exploring areas of Mongolia closed until the fall of the Soviet Union and researching The Secret History of the Mongols, an astonishing document written in code that was only recently discovered. He pored through archives and found groundbreaking evidence of Genghis's influence on the founding fathers and his essential impact on Thomas Jefferson. Genghis Khan and the Quest for God is a masterpiece of erudition and insight, his most personal and resonant work.

Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World [EPUB]

Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World [EPUB]
Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World by Jack Weatherford
2005 | EPUB | 1.04MB

The name Genghis Khan often conjures the image of a relentless, bloodthirsty barbarian on horseback leading a ruthless band of nomadic warriors in the looting of the civilized world. But the surprising truth is that Genghis Khan was a visionary leader whose conquests joined backward Europe with the flourishing cultures of Asia to trigger a global awakening, an unprecedented explosion of technologies, trade, and ideas. In Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World, Jack Weatherford, the only Western scholar ever to be allowed into the Mongols’ “Great Taboo”—Genghis Khan’s homeland and forbidden burial site—tracks the astonishing story of Genghis Khan and his descendants, and their conquest and transformation of the world.

Fighting his way to power on the remote steppes of Mongolia, Genghis Khan developed revolutionary military strategies and weaponry that emphasized rapid attack and siege warfare, which he then brilliantly used to overwhelm opposing armies in Asia, break the back of the Islamic world, and render the armored knights of Europe obsolete. Under Genghis Khan, the Mongol army never numbered more than 100,000 warriors, yet it subjugated more lands and people in twenty-five years than the Romans conquered in four hundred. With an empire that stretched from Siberia to India, from Vietnam to Hungary, and from Korea to the Balkans, the Mongols dramatically redrew the map of the globe, connecting disparate kingdoms into a new world order.

But contrary to popular wisdom, Weatherford reveals that the Mongols were not just masters of conquest, but possessed a genius for progressive and benevolent rule. On every level and from any perspective, the scale and scope of Genghis Khan’s accomplishments challenge the limits of imagination. Genghis Khan was an innovative leader, the first ruler in many conquered countries to put the power of law above his own power, encourage religious freedom, create public schools, grant diplomatic immunity, abolish torture, and institute free trade. The trade routes he created became lucrative pathways for commerce, but also for ideas, technologies, and expertise that transformed the way people lived. The Mongols introduced the first international paper currency and postal system and developed and spread revolutionary technologies like printing, the cannon, compass, and abacus. They took local foods and products like lemons, carrots, noodles, tea, rugs, playing cards, and pants and turned them into staples of life around the world. The Mongols were the architects of a new way of life at a pivotal time in history.

In Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World, Jack Weatherford resurrects the true history of Genghis Khan, from the story of his relentless rise through Mongol tribal culture to the waging of his devastatingly successful wars and the explosion of civilization that the Mongol Empire unleashed. This dazzling work of revisionist history doesn’t just paint an unprecedented portrait of a great leader and his legacy, but challenges us to reconsider how the modern world was made.

The Everything Art Handbook [EPUB]

The Everything Art Handbook [EPUB]
The Everything Art Handbook: A comprehensive guide to more than 100 art techniques and tools of the trade by Walter Foster Creative Team
2016 | EPUB | 49.58MB

The Everything Art Handbook is an all-inclusive, go-to resource for artists of any skill level.

A refreshing, accessible compendium of materials and techniques, The Everything Art Handbook is the perfect all-inclusive resource for beginning artists wanting to experiment and play with a variety of art mediums and techniques. The Everything Art Handbook is divided into sections focusing on different art mediums, such as drawing, pastel, watercolor, acrylic, oil, calligraphy, mixed media, color, composition, and more. Each section includes a basic overview of the technique, instructions for selecting and working with the right tools and materials, step-by-step sample artwork, and helpful sidebars with advice from professional artists. Using clear, informative explanations and tips for selecting the right tools and achieving the best results, The Everything Art Handbook is an approachable reference guide for contemporary artists of any skill level.

Against the Double Blackmail: Refugees, Terror and Other Troubles with the Neighbours [EPUB]

Against the Double Blackmail: Refugees, Terror and Other Troubles with the Neighbours [EPUB]
Against the Double Blackmail: Refugees, Terror and Other Troubles with the Neighbours by Slavoj Zizek
2016 | EPUB | 0.6MB

Today, hundreds of thousands of people, desperate to escape war, violence and poverty, are crossing the Mediterranean to seek refuge in Europe. Our response from our protected European standpoint, argues Slavoj Zizek, offers two versions of ideological blackmail: either we open our doors as widely as possible; or we try to pull up the drawbridge. Both solutions are bad, states Zizek. They merely prolong the problem, rather than tackling it.

The refugee crisis also presents an opportunity, a unique chance for Europe to redefine itself: but, if we are to do so, we have to start raising unpleasant and difficult questions. We must also acknowledge that large migrations are our future: only then can we commit to a carefully prepared process of change, one founded not on a community that see the excluded as a threat, but one that takes as its basis the shared substance of our social being.

The only way, in other words, to get to the heart of one of the greatest issues confronting Europe today is to insist on the global solidarity of the exploited and oppressed. Maybe such solidarity is a utopia. But, warns Zizek, if we don't engage in it, then we are really lost. And we will deserve to be lost.

Internet of Things: Principles and Paradigms [EPUB]

Internet of Things: Principles and Paradigms [EPUB]
Internet of Things: Principles and Paradigms edited by Rajkumar Buyya, Amir Vahid Dastjerdi
2016 | EPUB | 16.01MB

Internet of Things: Principles and Paradigms captures the state-of-the-art research in Internet of Things, its applications, architectures, and technologies. The book identifies potential future directions and technologies that facilitate insight into numerous scientific, business, and consumer applications. The Internet of Things (IoT) paradigm promises to make any electronic devices part of the Internet environment. This new paradigm opens the doors to new innovations and interactions between people and things that will enhance the quality of life and utilization of scarce resources.

To help realize the full potential of IoT, the book addresses its numerous challenges and develops the conceptual and technological solutions for tackling them. These challenges include the development of scalable architecture, moving from closed systems to open systems, designing interaction protocols, autonomic management, and the privacy and ethical issues around data sensing, storage, and processing.

  • Addresses the main concepts and features of the IoT paradigm
  • Describes different architectures for managing IoT platforms
  • Provides insight on trust, security, and privacy in IoT environments
  • Describes data management techniques applied to the IoT environment
  • Examines the key enablers and solutions to enable practical IoT systems
  • Looks at the key developments that support next generation IoT platforms
  • Includes input from expert contributors from both academia and industry on building and deploying IoT platforms and applications

How to Pay Zero Taxes, 2017: Your Guide to Every Tax Break the IRS Allows [EPUB]

How to Pay Zero Taxes, 2017: Your Guide to Every Tax Break the IRS Allows [EPUB]
How to Pay Zero Taxes, 2017: Your Guide to Every Tax Break the IRS Allows by Jeff A Schnepper
2016 | EPUB | 43.6MB

Pay less to the IRS! This go-to tax guide reveals what you need to know to save on your taxes year after year.

Tax time can be a serious drain on your resources―emotionally and financially. For over three decades How to Pay Zero Taxes has helped people just like you save money on their taxes. Engagingly written to make even the most complex information easy to understand, this reader-friendly guide zeroes in on what matters most: tax saving, not tax preparation. Tax expert Jeff Schnepper shares valuable advice on everything from converting personal expenses into business deductions to avoiding (or surviving) an audit.

Fully updated for 2017, the book shows you how to take advantage of IRS-sanctioned deductions, shelters, credits, exemptions, and more. In addition to legal deductions, you’ll find hundreds of insider tips designed to lower your tax bill. Whether you’re a tax professional or a home filer, this book will help you pay less to the IRS this year―and every year.

Engineering Happiness: A New Approach for Building a Joyful Life [EPUB]

Engineering Happiness: A New Approach for Building a Joyful Life [EPUB]
Engineering Happiness: A New Approach for Building a Joyful Life by Manel Baucells, Rakesh Sarin
2012 | EPUB | 0.6MB

Manel Baucells and Rakesh Sarin have been conducting ground-breaking research on happiness for more than a decade, and in this book they distill their provocative findings into a lively, accessible guide for a wide audience of readers. Integrating their own research with the latest thinking in the behavioral and social sciences—including management science, psychology, and economics—they offer a new approach to the puzzle of happiness. Woven throughout with wisdom from the world’s religions and literatures, Engineering Happiness has something to offer everyone—regardless of background, profession, or aspiration—who wants to better understand, control, and attain a more joyful life.

  • Shows how a few major principles can explain how happiness works and why it is so elusive
  • Demonstrates how the essence of attaining happiness is choice
  • Explores how to avoid happiness traps
  • Tells how to recognize happiness triggers in everyday life

Eat With Intention: Recipes and Meditations for a Life that Lights You Up [EPUB]

Eat With Intention: Recipes and Meditations for a Life that Lights You Up [EPUB]
Eat With Intention: Recipes and Meditations for a Life that Lights You Up by Cassandra Bodzak
2016 | EPUB | 42.14MB

Make Peace with Your Plate

This is not your traditional cookbook. You will not have to do a cleanse, eat kale every day, or eliminate an entire food group. Instead, you will learn the step-by-step process for eating with intention and put a stop to the never ending cycle of fad diets, constant exhaustion, and general unhappiness with your body and yourself.

Meditation and wellness teacher Cassandra Bodzak struggled for years with unhealthy dieting, stomach pains, and food allergies. It was only when she began to listen to her body and eat with intention that she transformed her life. In this book, she shares her wisdom to help you discover:

  • How to uncover the foods that are hurting you
  • How to nourish your body from a place of self-love
  • How to incorporate a daily gratitude or meditation practice into your life
  • How to prepare nearly 75 plant-based recipes, each accompanied by a mantra and meditation for eating with purpose and fueling your body

So if you want to learn how to quiet your mind, start listening to your own body, and love your whole self, then you are ready for this blueprint to a life that lights you up from the inside out. You are ready to live your best life with a clear head, open heart, and endless energy.