A Journey of Self-Discovery: 10 philosophical books for ages 15-19

Philosophy can be a challenging subject for anyone, but it can also be incredibly rewarding. For teenagers, exploring philosophical concepts can help them understand their own beliefs and values, as well as make sense of the world around them. However, with so many books out there, it can be difficult to know where to start. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of 10 philosophical and philosophy-related books that we think are perfect for teenagers between the ages of 15 and 19.

1. “Siddhartha” by Hermann Hesse

This classic novel follows the spiritual journey of a young man named Siddhartha as he seeks enlightenment. Through his experiences, he learns about the nature of reality, the self, and the importance of finding one’s own path in life.

2. “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance” by Robert M. Pirsig

This philosophical novel explores the relationship between rational thinking and the pursuit of quality. The main character, a professor of philosophy, takes a motorcycle trip with his son and reflects on the nature of existence, the philosophy of science, and the value of art.

3. “Meditations” by Marcus Aurelius

This collection of writings by the Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius offers practical advice on how to live a good life. Aurelius reflects on the nature of the universe, the importance of virtue, and the inevitability of death.

4. “The Tao of Pooh” by Benjamin Hoff

In this charming book, the author uses characters from A.A. Milne’s Winnie-the-Pooh to explain the principles of Taoism. Through the adventures of Pooh and his friends, readers learn about the nature of balance, harmony, and simplicity.

5. “The Republic” by Plato

This classic work of philosophy explores the nature of justice and the ideal society. Plato’s Socrates engages in a dialogue with various interlocutors to examine the nature of reality, knowledge, and the good life.

6. “The Consolation of Philosophy” by Boethius

Written in the 6th century, this work of philosophy explores the nature of happiness, the problem of evil, and the relationship between reason and faith. Boethius engages in a dialogue with Lady Philosophy to come to terms with his own suffering.

7. “The Nicomachean Ethics” by Aristotle

In this influential work of philosophy, Aristotle explores the nature of virtue and the good life. He argues that happiness is the ultimate goal of human life and that virtue is necessary to achieve it.

8. “The Stranger” by Albert Camus

This existential novel tells the story of a man named Meursault who is indifferent to the world around him. When he commits a murder, he is forced to confront the absurdity of his existence and the meaningless of life.

9. “The Symposium” by Plato

In this philosophical exploration of love and desire, Plato features a series of speeches given by different characters, each offering their own perspective on the nature of love and its importance in human life.

10. “The Social Contract” by Jean-Jacques Rousseau

This classic work of political philosophy explores the nature of society and the role of the individual within it. It offers insights into the relationship between the individual and the state, and the importance of democratic governance.

Philosophy can be an incredibly rewarding and enriching field for teenagers to explore. These 10 books offer a variety of perspectives and approaches to philosophical questions, making them ideal for anyone looking to engage with the subject. Whether you’re interested in existentialism, Taoism, or ancient Greek philosophy, there’s something on this list for you.

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