In this episode, we interviewed Marie Robert , philosopher, French teacher and author of two works published by Flammarion: “ Kant, you no longer know what to do, philosophy remains ” and “ Descartes for days of doubt ”.
Co-founder of Montessori schools in Paris and Marseille, philosophy columnist on France Inter, and speaker with different companies and brands such as Sézane and Epycure, Marie also shares her philosophical thoughts every day on her Instagram account, @philosophyissexy .
Today, she explains to us how philosophy can become a tool for everyday well-being, and shows us how certain philosophers and their thoughts can help us to better approach the situations of our daily life and to understand ourselves better.
Philosophy, “a way of being in the world”
Her ability to transmit and her desire to share have allowed Marie to make philosophy accessible to all. A passion that began in high school, when she realized that philosophy was the only subject, ultimately, which allowed the questions of life (love, desire, freedom) to exist. Today, Marie perceives philosophy not as a simple discipline, but as “a way of being in the world”.
Philosophy, a daily well-being tool
“As soon as we take a few moments to think about what is happening to us, to reflect, without wanting to perform, we are practicing philosophy.”
Marie explains to us that she now perceives philosophers as true “friends”, the idea being to draw on their reflections, and thus find comfort in discomfort.
3 examples of everyday life situations:
- The phases of food urges
In this type of situation, Aristotle is best able to respond. Rather than feeling guilty about having eaten a chocolate cake, you must learn to listen to your experience and ask yourself: “How do I feel about that?”, “Did it make me happy to eat this cake chocolate ?". Because we never change completely, we have experiences, which gradually build us and that takes time.
- The important deadline, which generates stress
Epicurus reminds us that nothing is serious. In life, there are lots of challenges. It is important to remember that we have the ability within us to quiet our mind. Because everything does not come from outside, many things also come from us, and from our ability to align ourselves. Appeasement is peace of the body and also of the mind, and a deadline should not damage all of that.
- The complexes
→ Sameness : what makes us remain the same person (the fingerprint, the DNA code).
→ Selfhood : our job, our friends, our spouse…
→ Narrative identity : the way I want to tell my story.
His proposal is as follows: Could we tell ourselves differently? Other than talking about your overly imposing nose and your extra pounds, because in the end, others see us through the stories we tell about ourselves.
Create a little philosophical dictionary : understanding the key concepts that build me, like pillars to refer to when things are not going well.
Use quotes that you understand and appropriate.
- Go through diagrams , take passages from authors, translate them, and then write them down, on a post-it, in a diary…
His advice for rising to philosophy
The best entry point is still Greek philosophy . Plato's dialogues, the narrative, the characters, and the exchanges, allow us to convey the cold and heavy side that we may be apprehensive about.
For those who want to get started, Marie advises starting with Plato's Symposium : a text on love and our relationships, very anchored in reality.
Marie also told us about the release of her next book, entitled “Le voyage de Pénélope”. The story of a person who sets out to meet himself, traveling from city to city, and thus forming the history of philosophy. A real initiatory journey, which we can't wait to discover!
- A book to recommend : “ The Memoirs of Hadrian ”, by Marguerite Yourcenar
- A place to think : Marseille or Cap Ferret
- A feel good philosopher : Emmanuel Levinas
- A quote : "Try. Fail. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.", Beckett
- A philosophical food : Chocolate
- An activity that makes you think : Running
- Next person to interview : A dancer
- One last piece of advice : Be bold, dare, go there and see what it feels like!
Very good listening!
See you next week, to learn more new, concrete keys to apply in your daily life.
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