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The Path to Happiness Summary

Michael Puett

The Path to Happiness

by Michael Puett

The Path to Happiness

Michael Puett

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How can we apply the teachings of Chinese philosophers from The Warring States period to our modern lives? In this Harvard course, professor Michael Puett explains how the Chinese ideas of the self, happiness, and leadership can help us today.

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The Path to Happiness

by Michael Puett

The Path to Happiness

Michael Puett

Overview

In 2021, we know more about human psychology and the self than ever before, much of our understanding going all the way back to the Chinese philosophers of The Warring States period. Ranging from the years 475 to 221 BCE, The Warring States period was an era of warfare in China. However, the period also gave birth to many famous Chinese philosophers.

In this online course from Harvard, professor Michael Puett explores the thinking of seven well-known philosophers: Confucius, Mozi, Mencius, Laozi, Zhuangzi, Xunzi, and Han Feizi. Puett looks at three themes: the self, happiness, and leadership. The course dives deep into the teachings of each philosopher in relation to these themes.

Even though we are a long way from The Warring States period, Puett argues that we can implement many of these teachings into our modern lives to find happiness.

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Favorite Quote

"The heart of compassion is the sprout of humaneness. The heart of shame is the sprout of propriety. The heart of deference and yielding is the sprout of ritual. The heart of right and wrong is the sprout of wisdom. All humans have these four sprouts, just as they have four limbs."

Michael Puett

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The Path to Happiness

Michael Puett

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