It’s about what the last three thousand years of human history can tell us about better living, and explores twelve universal topics, from work and love to money, creativity and empathy. What might we learn from the Ancient Greeks about the different varieties of love, from the industrial revolution about changing career, or from ancient Japanese pilgrims on the art of travel?
‘The Wonderbox is a cornucopia of delights. Completely fascinating, beautifully written and brimming with insights that challenge our entrenched and predictable ways of seeing and doing, it draws on an amazing range of stories from the history of human culture to explain how we can find true meaning in life. Every thinking home should have one!’ – Michael Wood, historian, broadcaster and author of The Story of England
Find out more about the book here. You can buy it from Amazon here.
The book is being launched with a series of five talks at The School of Life, Life Lessons from The Wonderbox, starting January 11 with ‘The Six Varieties of Love’.
The moment has finally come for the Outrospection blog to put its cards on the table and boldly declare who are the greatest empathists of all time. Our selection committee has been painstakingly deliberating over the choices for several months, and you might well be surprised by the results. No, Barack Obama does not appear in our top five, even though he believes ‘the empathy deficit’ to be the greatest scourge of modern society. And not even famed empathetic individuals such as the Dalai Lama, Mother Teresa or Jesus Christ have shown what it takes to make the grade. Continue reading →
Colin Ward was one the greatest anarchist thinkers of the past half century and a pioneering social historian. He died earlier this month at the age of eighty-five, leaving a legacy of over thirty books and a huge following of activists, educators and writers – amongst them myself – who were inspired by his approach to radical social change, which always favoured practical, grass-roots action over utopian dreamings of revolution. The outpouring of obituaries in The Guardian and elsewhere are testimony to his influence. Continue reading →
Welcome to my new blog about empathy – the art of stepping into the shoes of other people and seeing the world from their perspective.
I believe that empathy can help us escape from the narrow confines of our own existence and guide us towards more adventurous and fulfilling lives. Empathy is also a radical tool for social transformation that has the potential to bring about change not through new laws, policies or institutions, but through a revolution of human relationships. Barack Obama has said the most fundamental problem in modern society is ‘the empathy deficit’. Harnessing the transformative power of empathy is the great challenge of the twenty-first century.
This weekly blog will contain my own thoughts on empathy, the stories of empathetic adventurers, interviews with key empathy activists and thinkers, and act as a global portal for empathy news from around the world. I also hope it becomes a place where people can share their personal experiences of looking at life through they eyes of others.
I would like to launch this blog with a story that I hope you find as inspiring as I do. Continue reading →