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One of the bestselling authors of Plato and a Platypus travels to Greece with a suitcase full of philosophy books, seeking the best way to achieve a fulfilling old age.  Daniel Klein journeys to the Greek island Hydra to discover the secrets of aging happily. Drawing on the lives of his Greek friends, as well as philosophers ranging from Epicurus to Sartre, Klein learns toOne of the bestselling authors of Plato and a Platypus travels to Greece with a suitcase full of philosophy books, seeking the best way to achieve a fulfilling old age.  Daniel Klein journeys to the Greek island Hydra to discover the secrets of aging happily. Drawing on the lives of his Greek friends, as well as philosophers ranging from Epicurus to Sartre, Klein learns to appreciate old age as a distinct and extraordinarily valuable stage of life. He uncovers simple pleasures that are uniquely available late in life, as well as headier pleasures that only a mature mind can fully appreciate. A travel book, a witty and accessible meditation, and an optimistic guide to living well, Travels with Epicurus is a delightful jaunt to the Aegean and through the terrain of old age led by a droll philosopher. A perfect gift book for the holidays, this little treasure is sure to please longtime fans of Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar and garner new ones, young and old....

Title : Travels with Epicurus: A Journey to a Greek Island in Search of a Fulfilled Life
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780143121930
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 176 Pages
Status : Available For Download
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Travels with Epicurus: A Journey to a Greek Island in Search of a Fulfilled Life Reviews

  • Dan
    2019-06-11 08:31

    A quaint little travelogue and meditation on aging. Klein is searching for an authentic old age here, a kind of capstone to a well-lived life and a space for reflection and appreciation before the dreaded old old age descends and robs the body and mind of their faculties. I found this slim book rather delightful. While not rigorous in the least, it was packed with tidbits of philosophy spanning - more or less - the whole of humanity. I think the main takeaway for me was that life's discrete stations should be respected and fully embodied; there's no point in trying to remain young as you age, and there's certainly no point in rushing some kind of grand reflection when you're still contending with the day-to-day of your productive years. I'm only giving it three stars because it's not the kind of book that introduces new concepts. It's the kind of book you turn to for reminders, a kind of existential tune-up, if you will. Plus, it kind of falls on the shallow side of sentimentality. All in all, perfectly enjoyable.If you liked this, make sure to follow me on Goodreads for more reviews!

  • Jigar Brahmbhatt
    2019-05-29 06:27

    Why would I pick up a book which is essentially an attempt to construct a sunny philosophy to deal with old age? Maybe because when I started reading it, I was having long conversations with my grandpa about his eighty years on earth, and I felt that it would be good to know what Epicurus had to say about living a fulfilling life... also because I like to secretly think of myself as a Stoic! Anyway, this book is less about stoicism and more about Daniel Klien dealing with old age in a very accepting way. So he slings a bag filled with books around his shoulder, roams around the ancient mountain side roads of Greece, and has interesting conversations with locales about stuff, throwing philosophical references now and then. Not bad at all, breezy in fact, and one understands the value of patience he talks about, about how the element of play is removed from everything we do in this competitive world - yes, it makes sense, but the problem here is of timing, which is to say I am not at the right age to totally relate to this book. I understand it, but I can't feel it in my bones. Maybe grandpa could, but he wouldn't need to read it.

  • Kevin
    2019-06-02 11:22

    Not what we have, but what we enjoy, constitutes our abundance.—EPICURUSThe first thing you learn about Epicurus is that he wasn't a great gourmand.Epicurus preferred a bowl of plain boiled lentils to a plate of roasted pheasant He knew that if he ate mindfully he would experience all of their flavor, flavor that rivals spicy food. The key is mindfulness not the food.While this book may be enjoyed by all I think that it will only truly be appreciated by the old, and maybe not by a large number of those who are fighting against oldness. For me I'll come back to this book often. I'm not that old, I learned something new about Epicurus today.

  • Deborah Ideiosepius
    2019-05-17 10:14

    A delightful, meditative look at applying classical philosophy to daily life.The cover reads "...Daniel Klein contemplates the best path to a happy and fulfilling life as an old man." And this description would not ordinarily have convinced me to pick up this book. However luckily, the Epicurus of the title was one I had encountered before and I was curious. The above description seriously underrates and undervalues this beautifully written novel, suggesting that it is only relevant to Septuagenarians who want to move away from the fast lane.Instead, this contemplative novel looks at applying Philosophy to self realisation, and while the author is searching for "An authentic old age" it is an equally valid journey for anyone who wishes to apply concious choice to their lifestyle, rather than automatically accepting social norms.Daniel Klein goes to the Greek island of Hydra (He is clearly a Greekophille of long standing), and applies the philosophies of Epicurus and other classic philosophers to a daily philosophy of living.It is lovely to read, I suspect I will need to go out and buy it so I can read it again.

  • Ian
    2019-05-22 07:40

    I enjoyed this more than I thought and it took longer to read than I anticipated. Longer because there were many philosophical references that deserved exploring. More enjoyable because there was something charming about an old guy spending a month on a Greek island philosophising about getting old. This is not a self help book (a good thing) it simply offers a wide range of thought provoking insights into not just getting older but friendship, marriage and boredom to name a few. These are all interspersed with observations of the quiet goings on on the Greek island of Hydra, where the author thinks the locals have to some extent been following the advice of their philosophical ancient forefathers. Those well read in philosophy wouldn't get much from this, but for me it was accessible and interesting stuff.

  • Diane Barnes
    2019-06-13 09:24

    Interesting, but not memorable.

  • Graeme Roberts
    2019-06-10 11:40

    I loved this little book. Daniel Klein is growing old, just a couple of carriages ahead of me on the train of life. He packs off to Hydra, a Greek Island, with a case of philosophy books to help him make sense of the rest of life. His ruminations are real and charming to me, and he introduces various philosophers who have gone before. The more ancient they are, Aristotle and Epicurus in particular, the better they are. Perhaps Heidegger and Sartre had nothing left to think, so they said it many words. Fortunately, short quotes, many of them beautiful and wise, suffice.Mr. Klein's descriptions of sunny bare landscapes, the villagers, and the small group of old friends at Dimitri's Tavern who sit, talk, drink, and think in desultory, relaxed way, are quite lovely. This is a fine book for old men.

  • Ian
    2019-05-19 07:24

    Travels with Epicurus is a wonderful read, written by a good humoured intellectual with a common touch and without condescension.The book is no travelogue, no road trip, rather the travels are those through the history of philosphers taking a lead from the Greek Epicurus in ruminating on the joys, or otherwise, of achieving old age, and those of traversing through stages of life and accumulative experience.The auther, David Klein, draws comparisons between friends of his in his homeland of USA who are caught up in forever retaining a lust for the fast life and tick list achievements, as well as bodily fitness associated with a more youthful visage, and those friends on the Greek island of Hydra who allow old age to settle comfortably upon them accepting a pace of life and comfort in their own skin.Whilst many considered Epicurus' lifestyle to be hedonistic Klein prefers to explore the more gentle notions of living in the moment, social inclusion and environmental respect.Klein uses the setting of Hydra as a backdrop to his writing and for beautiful literary illustration of many of the nuances of the philosphical espousals, not least in the slow pace of life and the apparent contentment of its residents.Klein is able to mix and move among the people of Hydra as he has been visiting regularly since his youth, speaks enough Greek to converse and contribute, a very different scenario to pitching up out of the blue with no such background and social abilities.I did not deduce that Klein is suggesting that simply living out ones days on a remote island with no land based mechanised transportation is the key to contented old age, rather when observing an eclectic bunch of old friends playing games and either animatedly talking or engaged in a reflective silence it is clear that these old men have already lived, worked hard, achieved, raised families, and now have the presence of mind to stretch out their days, enjoying each moment for its own sake, with good company, good food, with gratitude and respect for life and the moment.What he seems to be noticing is a relative slowing of time in this phase of life he calls old age compared with others he sees cramming in bucket list experiences or lycra clad trying to turn back their internal clock. Klein doesn't judge, his own preferences are evident yet he is smart enough to recognise that everyone is entitled to their own version of happiness, rather he is meditating on the more is less concept where the crammers are accelerating time, fighting it, always wanting more, and the grizzly Greeks are in fact slowing time in a pleasurable existential love of the simple act of living.What Klein really fears however is what he labels old old age with infirmity where these choices are removed.It's a fascinating work, easily grasped, and thought provoking, and from a personal viewpoint introduced me to certain philosophical names and musings I had not been exposed to before.Klein is not pretending to present new thinking, simply packaging others' writings and presenting his own meditations of their relativity to his own experiences and observations in an accessible and enjoyable manner to enhance prospects of enjoying old age before death or old old age takes the choice away.I received Travels with Epicurus as a Goodread Giveway win and heartily recommend the book.

  • Nina Harrington
    2019-06-12 13:35

    Travels with Epicurus. A journey to a Greek Island in search of a Fulfilled life by Daniel KleinThe author had an epiphany after being offered dental implants at 73 and started to question what it meant to be an authentic old man who was aware about how much full conscious and rational life he had left. he would want to use that time in the best way possible.With lots of questions and not many answers, he takes off to the Greek island of Hydra with a suitcase of philosophy books.Chapter 1. The old greek's olive trees. On Epicurus's philosophy of fulfilment. Epicurus grew up on the Aegean island of Samos close to Asia Minor. born in 341BC he did not believe in an afterlife and focused his studies in the service of one question - how does one make the most of one's life? His answer was that the best possible life one could live is a happy one, a life filled with pleasure. but of course this was only a staring point because then you have to define what constitutes a happy life. some Athenians saw Epicurus and his idea of personal pleasure and self-interest as a threat to social altruism and good citizenship. in fact Epicurus created an open and equal community of radical egalitarianism of both gender and social class.In our modern culture there seems to be a completely contrasting opinion, where the older generation strive to set new goals and keep young though medical practices or travel or intellectual pursuit. no long afternoons sitting with friends or listening to music or musing about the story of our lives. and we will never get another chance for that.Epicurus recommended that 'we free ourselves from the prison of everyday affairs and politics' which predates the relentless commercial pressure to buy more and more technology and stuff that we do not really need. he would fit perfectly into the hippy get by on nothing lifestyle which is such a challenge.Chapter 2. On time and worry beads.Chapter 3. Solitary reflection.Chapter 4. On Existential Authenticity. including a very practical discussion about sexuality and libido and the older man.Chapter 5. On Mellowing to Metaphysics.Chapter 6. On Stoicism an Old Old Age.Chapter 7. On the timeliness of Spirituality.Epilogue. Returning Home. On a mindful old age.Each chapter of the book is an ensemble of personal memories of special moments blended with academic works written by well respected theorists on that chapter's topic.And it is a joy. Personal and universal. And a wonderful evocation of the Greek spirit of life and love and passion for life and people.Yes, there are many who would say that the conclusions are common sense and that this book reflects the current obsession we have to navel gaze and treat our lives as academic subjects to be examined ad nauseam.But it is a brave thing to go against the western world’s youth obsessed culture and recommend the simply life where the relentless pursuit of commerce and possessions is all consuming.If you want an alternative view of how to seize the moment – read this book.This book was obtained from NetGalley in exchange for an open and honest review.

  • Philip Shade
    2019-06-04 08:34

    As a 70-something-year-old Daniel Klein returns to the Greek island of Hydra, where in the 1960s he spent a lost year. Through Epicurus, Seneca, Kierkegaard, Freud, Leary, and others Klein compares what he thought of as leading a fulfilled life as a college graduate starting out to how he sees it as a semi-retired father and writer closer to the end. Like an old man walking the the road from Hydra's harbor to the taverna in Vlichos you'll find yourself often pausing to think about the road you've traveled and what comes at the end of your journey. Travels with Epicurus has insights, and questions, for readers at any stage of their life.

  • PEI Public Library Service
    2019-05-23 07:36

    In his book, Travels with Epicurus, former philosophy professor, Daniel Klein, attempts to find out how to live a meaningful life after retiring. Klein focuses on how make this post working time of life as great as we are told it should be, before the dreaded decline into what he calls old, old age. Klein sets off for the Greek island of Hydra,in search of meaning in this stage of his life. He takes along a suitcase full of philosophy books, some of his favorite philosophers that he thinks will shed some light on what he hopes to discover. Klein observes the people he encounters each day who live on the Island where the only means of transportation is by walking or donkey. He engages the people of Hydra he encounters, perhaps a group of older men enjoying each other’s company at a meal, whoever he chances upon. In the ensuing discourse, the academic and the commonplace blend together, each informed by the other, a sort of practical, applied philosophy.When I encounter philosophy and philosophers, I have a tendency to bog down in the deductive reasoning of philosophical algorithms. I didn’t encounter this in Klein’s discourse. He manages to demystify and popularize his subject for a lay reader, and make it quite manageable. Klein at once draws the reader in, and his quest becomes our quest. I like his method of drawing on the wisdom of the local populace as well as the classical philosophers in search of what makes for a meaningful existence. It is said that all the great questions are really philosophical questions. It’s fun to be along with Klein on his journey to a Greek island in a search of a fulfilled life.Borrow a copy: http://bit.ly/1NVt98s

  • Clay Kallam
    2019-06-16 12:24

    Like most philosophy books, "Travels with Epicurus" doesn't come to some grand, world-altering conclusion (and those that make the attempt are always claiming too much) -- but Daniel Klein's brief contemplations on aging contain both wisdom and wit.That combination is pretty much always a winner, and here Klein, in his 70s, turns the meditation to aging, and does so, oddly, away from his wife on a Greek island. (Hydra, the chosen island, was also the base when Leonard Cohen wrote "Beautiful Losers" and inspired many of the songs on "Songs from a Room.") Klein calls on Epicurus as a muse, and the misunderstood ancient philosopher is an excellent choice, emphasizing as he does the simple pleasures of life and friendship.This is far from the kind of heavy-reading slog required of most philosophers, and "Travels with Epicurus" goes down smoothly and leaves a satisfied afterglow.

  • Brooke Mohallatee
    2019-06-01 09:14

    An entertaining and thoughtful look at the philosophy of old age. Definitely sharing with a certain someone who will appreciate the perspective (Pop!) and look forward to discussing with him while sipping ouzo on a sunny Greek terrace... (Ok, probably sipping beers on a sunny Kentucky porch...)

  • Pat Padden
    2019-06-11 06:33

    This is lightweight philosophizing about stopping to smell the roses. Slowing down as we get older (as if we had a choice) and learning to appreciate the grace notes in our lives. A nice little "note to self" type of reminder, but no groundbreaking insights.

  • Anne MacDonald
    2019-05-26 13:43

    Fascinating well written ponderings on something we will all face (if we're lucky!) sooner or later. downloaded from my library, but I'm going to buy a copy

  • sevdah
    2019-06-03 08:14

    A book about growing old - the trap of wanting to be forever young, the pleasures and sorrows of ageing, Epicurus, Aristotle and Stoicism, the fear of death, battling instead of simply accepting the loss of libido, looking for spirituality in old age, and a lot more. All of this thinking and most of the writing happened while Klein was abroad, just describing this super romanticized idea of Greece that almost made me want to laugh. However it's incredible I've never read a memoir by a person just coming to terms with old age and wanting to make the best of it while also being realistic - and it's an important question to rise. Would love to read more books like it.

  • Bonnieb
    2019-05-18 14:43

    A short 160 page, well-written essay that is more philosophy than travel or memoir. Klein provides a nudge to his readers to reflect and review one's thoughts on “OLD AGE”, arguing that "it is to be embraced, savored and enjoyed as the stage of life that allows time for rumination, for simpler pleasures and for nurturing friendships.” Klein begins his odyssey with the insight that “Old age is ignored in this country,” with Americans needing to be “forever young” through many cosmetic, ‘must haves’ and “bucket lists” of things that must be done before death overtakes us. “But something about this new philosophy of old age does not sit right with me ,” he wrote, “I suspect that if I were to take this popularly accepted route, I would miss out on something deeply significant. … I am seriously concerned that on that route I would miss for eternity ever simply being authentically and contentedly old.” Klein retreats to Hydra, a Greek Island he has visited many times since his early Hippie days of the late 60s to reflect on what an authentic old man might be and how to be that person. He takes several philosophy books with him to help, including Epicurus, a Greek philosopher whose name has become associated with hedonism, and particularly with fine food. “Epicurus is a hedonist only because he believed the best possible life is a happy one,” he reported. “But his idea was to savor what we have and not to strive—not to work too hard.” “Part of a successful old age is the privilege to reflect”, he concludes, “to draw on the experiences of the past,” and he admires the Greek ability to for sit in companionable silence with one’s friends. enjoying friends and loved ones with no ulterior motives. His journey, reflections and experiences in Hydra facilitate Klein’s conclusion that age is a time of enjoying friends and loved ones with no ulterior motives. Perhaps, he suggests, that “age brings situations where nothing is demanded of people other than the pleasure of their company.”Klein calls America’s aging the “Forever Young” people, continuing to set new goals for oneself, “There is no rest for the striver,” he contends. “Just beyond the completion of each goal on our life achievement ‘bucket list’ looms another goal, and then another. Meanwhile, of course, the clock is ticking—quite loudly, in fact. We become breathless. And we have no time left for a calm and reflective appreciation of our twilight years, no deliciously long afternoons sitting with friends or listening to music or musing about the stories of our lives. And we will never get another chance for that.” Ultimately he appreciates old age as a privilege to be savored, rather than a disease to be cured or a condition to be denied. Klein suggests that ‘mindfulness’, simply being aware of aging and the options available while they remain available, is perhaps the best authentic old age…before ‘old, old age’ sets in.Quoting Epicurus finally: “It is not the young man who should be considered fortunate but the old man who has lived well, because the young man in his prime wanders much by chance, vacillating in his beliefs, while the old man has docked in the harbor, having safeguarded his true happiness.”

  • Vera Marie
    2019-06-09 07:28

    More about philosophy than about travel, the little book Travels with Epicurus, grabbed my attention for a couple of reasons. First, the author is 73 and thinking of how to be old. Second, he travels to a Greek Island to do his thinking.Daniel Klein, a Harvard-educated philosopher, has not only read widely in philosophy, he’s also written several books of his own. You can tell right away there is nothing stuffy about the musings of a guy who not only writes philosophy, but also a series of mysteries featuring Elvis Presley. And get this… he was a joke writer for Lily Tomlin and others.Now he turns to the Greek teacher Epicurus for guidance on how to live because Epicurus believed old age was the “best it gets.” He quotes Epicurus from the “Vatican Sayings”:It is not the young man who should be considered fortunate, but the old man who has lived well, because the young man in his prime wanders much by chance, vacillating in his beliefs, while the old man has docked in the harbor, having safeguarded his true happiness.Not for this author the forever young, hormone shots, hair dye, continuation of a competitive professional life that he sees among his friends in the United States.In between his contemplation of philosophical concerns of aging, Klein talks about his daily life on Hydra and about the people he meets. Whether or not you enjoy philosophy, even leavened with wit and the breezy style of Daniel Klein, when you look at this book, you will wind up thinking that Hydra is a mighty appealing place to travel.This contains portions of a review written at A Traveler's Library.Read more atA Traveler's Library

  • Lisa
    2019-06-10 06:14

    This is an interesting book: Travels with Epicurus: A Journey to a Greek Island in Search of an Authentic Old Age will give pause for thought to anyone in the Baby Boomer generation contemplating how best to manage the transition to old age.Because what Daniel Klein is on about, is the importance of accepting the limitations of aging so that you can enjoy the stage of life that comes before old old age.Klein is American, but what he says about the contemporary enthusiasm for being ‘forever young’ applies just as much here in Australia, because there are plenty of people here on the same pathway: medical intervention such as cosmetic surgery and Viagra not for health problems but to support a culture of denying old age; self-improvement courses; personal trainers, continuing work well into your 70s and so on. 70 is the new 50 and all that. The ‘bucket’ list that never ends.All well and good, he says, but by denying old age, people go from ‘forever young’ to old old age and miss out on being a fulfilled older person, ‘docked in the harbour, having safeguarded his true happiness‘. (p93.) This is the pinnacle of life, says Epicurus the Greek philosopher, the one that we most often wrongly associate with gourmet eating rather than a wise man who was interested in how to live an enjoyable life.To read the rest of my review please visit http://anzlitlovers.com/2012/11/06/tr...

  • Mehwish Mughal
    2019-05-16 07:26

    The book is small and cute! I fell in love with the idea of Greece for two reasons: 1. Daniel's detailed and creative description of Greece;2. The great philosophers that walked there once!Yes, I am a romantic at heart.Daniel takes us on a philosophical journey towards finding the best way to live a life when "old" age dawns upon us. The entire concept seemed like a far-fetched idea simply because I thought I was not “old” yet. But at the same time something stirred deep inside me and I also felt that I was unable to detach myself from it so I left the book aside for a few hours to think about this strange feeling!After a thorough inspection of my feelings and thoughts, I came to the conclusion that everything that I had read was relevant to me in all possible ways. I may not be chronologically old but I could change the way I do things in order to extract maximum possible pleasures (Epicurean way!) and to religiously incorporate the ideology in my daily life that BEING ALIVE IS A PRIVILEGE IN ITSELF. I have already recommended this book to my sister and a few friends!

  • Tim
    2019-06-04 09:29

    Pleasant enough, but basically in the vein of "Chicken soup for the soul", cab-driver philosophy. Really: it amounts to more or less this: Wow! life is cosmic, know what I mean? Bummer to be old, but then again, mellow. Don't care that I can't score; that's a relief. Philosophy, that's some heavy-ass shit, know what Imean? Heidegger... I mean, c'mon! But then again - maybe he was deep? More retsina! Greece is nice. It's quaint and picturesque. Epicurus, Epictetus, Seneca, Sartre... all these guys... pretty deep really. You should go to Hydra sometime, but if you don't that's okay, just be glad you're alive.Oh and here's the hook: if you're old, go with it - don't try to cling pathetically to pre-old life. In a way I agree with this, in another way I think it's a false framing of the challenge of not being young.I give it 3 stars, because I think what he offers is not nonsense. I just dock 2 stars for its total sloppiness & lack of ambition to think. But I truly wish him a happy old age, and me too before long.

  • Edward
    2019-06-13 07:36

    I found this book in the local independent bookstore and I thought that it would be an appropriate read. I am getting old and I am going to sail the Greek Islands later this year. The author spent a month on the Greek island of Hydra, where he had spent a considerable amount of time much earlier in his life. The premise of the writing is based upon the Greek philosopher Epicurus, who lived about 80 years after Plato and was born in 341 BCE. Epicurus believed that we should enjoy life and we have only one shot at it. Epicurus' principal question was "How does one make the most of one's life?" I assume that this is a question most of us ask ourselves, particularly as we move on in years.The writing in the book gave me lots to think about. It was almost a primer of the great philosophers' take on getting old. The philosophy was interspersed with the author's own questions of his life as he had just turned 73.I just like writing that makes me think and where I can learn a bit about what other people think on questions that are important to me.

  • Lianne
    2019-05-18 08:42

    I was fortunate to have been approved a galley copy of this book.The focus of this book is very much the notion of old age and how to approach life at that point. I enjoyed how the author used both philosophy and his experience living in that Greek community to exemplify his search and understanding of old age and how to live a fulfilling life at that age. He also touches on the subject of old age in our society, the attitude towards it, etc. as a contrast to what the philosophers say about it and his search for fulfillment.While brief and perhaps a little simplistic–would’ve loved to have read more about the author’s time living in Greece–Travels with Epicurus is a pretty straightforward read in reflecting and ruminating about old age and how to approach life at that age.My complete review of the novel was originally posted at eclectictales.com: http://www.eclectictales.com/blog/201...

  • Lady Gazelle Blanc
    2019-05-30 06:36

    A charming book about the value of living, taken from the perspective of an elder person. An enjoyable summer read. " Life has carried some men with the greatest rapidity to the harbour, the harbour they were bound to reach even if they tarried on the way, while others it has fretted and harassed. To such a life, as you are aware, one should not always cling. For mere living is not a good, but living well is. Accordingly, the wise man will live as long as he ought, not as long as he can..He always reflects concerning the quality, not the quantity, of his life. As soon as there are many events in his life that give him trouble and disturb his peace of mind, he sets himself free..For no man can lose very much when but a driblet remains. It is not a question of dying earlier or later, but of dying well or ill. And dying well means escape from the danger of living ill." love this quote.

  • Amanda
    2019-06-15 14:29

    I entered a Goodreads contest and was mailed a free copy. My favorite thing about this book is the cover. That said, the author makes some interesting points and the writing has chuckle-worthy moments. I thought it was important that this author is writing about and thus bringing awareness to the fact that being old actually has a lot of positives. It's a deeper meditation than say Nora Ephron's "I Hate My Neck."

  • Jonathan-David Jackson
    2019-05-19 14:34

    An enjoyable book to read, but for somebody like me who has already thought quite a lot about old age, the purpose of life and our society's obsession with youth, there's very little in it that's new to me. Still, I would probably read it again. It's short, pleasant, and fun. That's what she said.Not what we have, but what we enjoy, constitutes our abundance. - Epicurus

  • Jayaprakash Satyamurthy
    2019-06-11 08:41

    This book made me smile, laugh and think. Old age is a couple of decades in my future, but Klein's thoughts on living according to one's stage of life and one's own nature, informed by his readings from philosophers across the ages (and a small but appropriate glance at Hinduism) apply across ages, I think. A gentle, thoughtful book that embodies the joys of the well examined life.

  • C
    2019-06-12 10:25

    “What is the best way to be an old man?”The old man accepts while the forever-youngster denies. Impending death, of course!A motif of this book is a scene of 5 old friends around a table, snacking, playing cards, talking, enjoying each other's company, and underneath it all, a current of occasional musings. This book is the author's musings on the central question of this stage of life. To ask if the book is "good", the answers "cogent" is to miss the point. Take the opportunity to be with him, listen to his exploration, share the wonders he found. That is what an old friend is for.

  • Joan
    2019-05-20 07:19

    Started this today waiting for test results in a Doctor's office and loved the book, even in that environment.

  • Eduard Barbu
    2019-06-09 13:38

    "It is impossible to live wisely and well and justly without living a pleasant life" said the philosopher Epicurus. This book is little more than a meditation of this saying. Retreated in the little beautiful island Hydra, Daniel Klein is reflecting on old age. He is not walking alone the last stage of his life. Fortunately he has good company : old greek friends, good food and wine, the sea and the mountain and the reflections of Epicurus. Along the journey we meet other philosophers : the stoics (the archrivals of Epicurus), the existentialists, Montaigne, the Norwegian philosopher Lars Svendsen and others. But we also meet the American friends of Daniel Klein, Frank Sinatra life aphorismes as they appear in his songs. If I am to characterize the book in few words I would say it is "applied philosophy". The ideas of philosophy are tested in the furnace of life because as we learnt from Pierre Hadot the ancient philosophy was meant to be a way of life.