Thoreau on Simplicity

In our first post of this series, we will discuss one of the major themes in Walden(public library), the necessity of simple living. Thoreau spent his time in a small, one room cabin at Walden Pond, consisting of the barest of necessities to ensure that his time was spent in only worthwhile pursuits. Thoreau lived […]

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Introducing Henry David Thoreau’s Walden

With our first series on Schopenhauer’s The Wisdom of Life complete, we now turn toward 19th century New England to learn from famed transcendentalist Henry David Thoreau. On July 4, 1845, in an exercise of ascetic living in pursuit of his highest self, Thoreau began a two year, two month, and two day adventure living […]

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Summary of Schopenhauer’s The Wisdom of Life

In the past series, we discussed some major themes of Schopenhauer’s The Wisdom of Life (public library). It is here worth noting that this text is only a small sample of his life’s work, coming thirty years after his magnum opus, The World as Will and Idea (undoubtedly to be discussed at length in the future!), […]

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Schopenhauer on the Opinions of Others

So far we have discussed three major themes in Schopenhauer’s The Wisdom of Life, that the greatest source of happiness is one’s self, and this is pursued through self-actualization of our particular gifts made possible by good health. We now turn toward one of the greatest obstacles toward personal fulfillment, the over-evaluation of the opinions […]

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Schopenhauer on Self-Actualization

In our first two posts on Schopenhauer’s The Wisdom of Life, we learned that happiness consists in what a man is rather than has, and that health is the foundation which makes such joy possible. We now turn toward the crafting of our daily lives, the purposeful ordering of one’s actions in order to reach […]

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Schopenhauer on Health

With our first post regarding Schopenhauer’s take on what makes for a happy life, we now turn toward what makes that happiness possible, namely, the fortune of good health. It might seem an unlikely source to receive advice on health from a 19th century philosopher, but Schopenhauer acknowledged that it was good health which made all […]

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Schopenhauer on Happiness

With the first of four posts concerning the major themes in Arthur Schopenhauer’s The Wisdom of Life, we will learn what the great German metaphysician taught about the construction of one’s own happiness. This might seem odd coming from a Pessimist who believed the fundamental error of humanity was the belief that we exist in […]

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Introducing Build The Fire Philosophy

We are excited to announce a new series of posts purposed toward the application of ancient philosophy in our modern lives. As civilization advances, we find ourselves facing problems unique to our benefit of time and geography. With our Maslowian needs met, we turn our efforts toward the upper echelon of self-actualization. The struggles for […]

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A Fasting Two-Day 30-Mile Hike Through The Yosemite Wilderness

I have just returned from a fasting two-day 30-mile hike in the Yosemite Wilderness. It was a grueling experience through a pristine landscape which produced a stillness I have never known. Our senses collect data at every moment, and we often don’t notice that things as simple as conversations, images, songs, and television, even passively […]

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Rocks, Sand, and Our Greatest Freedom

With the second post from my experiences on this trip, we will discuss a very different kind of adventure, not of mountainous landscapes but of the mind. I recently spent time in Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument in Utah, a desert terrain filled with canyons that remind one of 127 hours and rock formations that […]

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How I Celebrated my 30th Birthday

A few days ago I celebrated my thirtieth birthday, in a way I had never imagined. Waking up before the sun, I made my way to the Conundrum Creek Trailhead just outside of Aspen, bag packed and headed off. A popular tourist attraction in the summer and fall months, the park authorities shut down the […]

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SNEAK PEEK: Chapter 1 of The Tao of Jiu Jitsu

While writing, I find myself always returning to Jiu Jitsu. I have made an effort to focus my writing on fiction, for I believe this to be where my future lies, but I am ceaselessly compelled to write about this art. I have spent more time practicing Jiu Jitsu than any other human activity, in […]

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A Movement Toward The Meaningful

As the world becomes increasingly connected, we will continue to find more opportunities to express ourselves. This creates the temptation to spend more time on the expressing rather than that which is expressed. Mankind still competes with one another for our survival. Where we once fought for mating rights and the best cut of meat, […]

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The Significance of Storytelling

Storytelling remains the backbone of our education. We grow up begging for bedtime stories; as adolescents, we yearn for television and movies; and, in adulthood, many of us turn to books. Joseph Campbell, world-renowned mythologist and author, discussed at length the importance of myth. He had a wide understanding of myths across geography and time, […]

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