Welcome to School of Philosophy Wessex

Your Invitation to life with Philosophy

A fresco at Waterperry House, Oxon

Introductory Course Outline

The next few weeks may be challenging. We hope our offer makes things just that bit easier.

Weekly sessions of around an hour
Classes will meet remotely via Zoom
Consider philosophical ideas and questions relevant to all our lives
Half-term (so no meeting) will be from 24th to 30th May.

The Introductory Course of practical Philosophy is presented in 10 sessions referred to collectively as 'Philosophy and Wisdom'. The content of each session is as follows:-

Sessions 1 & 2 - The Wisdom Within - Philosophy means the love of wisdom. Our course is intended to show how philosophy may help us enjoy richer, less stressful and more useful lives. This opening session considers these aims further, and introduces simple exercises in mindfulness and the application of wisdom which can be practised in daily life.

Sessions 3 & 4 - Know Thyself - Who am I, really? My body? My emotions? My strongly held beliefs? My soul? Possibly all of these? Possibly none? Such questions have been considered by philosophers down the ages. We look at practical ways to explore who we really are and how to tap our true potential.

Sessions 5 & 6 - Being Awake - Often the most notable quality of wise people is their alertness to the subtleties of a situation. They are awake, perceptive and curious. We look at deeper levels of awareness, and consider how we may become more awake to ourselves, our surroundings, and the events we meet.

Sessions 7 & 8 - The Present Moment - We review our own experience of attention through a model featuring attention centred, captured, open and scattered, and how these each relate to the past, present and future. We examine the extraordinary brightness and freedom naturally available in the present moment. A straightforward practice is introduced to help us experience this more frequently.

Sessions 9 & 10 - Living Justly - According to Plato, justice and injustice do not start ‘out there’. They begin within ourselves. For justice to prevail, Plato suggests that we must learn to avoid being 'tyrannised' by our passions and fears to the extent they overrule our reason. We discuss the practicality of Plato's ideas on justice in our daily lives.