Summary of The Art of Stillness

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The Art of Stillness summary
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Rating

8

Qualities

  • Engaging
  • Inspiring
  • Eloquent

Recommendation

Author Pico Iyer is an avid traveler. Nevertheless, with serene composure, he argues that the most beneficial journey you can take is one inside yourself. Iyer eloquently explains his personal experience of escaping the rat race to find his inner stillness. While his examples are mainly anecdotal, he makes a strong case for disconnecting from technology in order to reconnect with the world. At a time when burnout is becoming an epidemic, Iyer’s ideas on going nowhere are especially relevant. 

About the Speaker

Pico Iyer is a novelist and nonfiction author. His books have been translated into more than 20 languages.

 

Summary

The best way to sharpen your perceptions while traveling and to appreciate what you see is to stay at home.

Pico Iyer is an avid traveler. He became a travel writer to communicate the magic of foreign places to readers. But he realizes that traveling lacks magic if you don’t have an open, receptive attitude. For instance, someone who is angry at home will feel disgruntled abroad.

Iyer found the best way for him to sharpen his own perceptions while traveling and to appreciate his experiences is to go nowhere – that is, to take regular breaks. By setting aside time – a few minutes each day, several days each season or even a few years within a lifetime – for gentle reflection, you’ll find clarity within your stillness and discover what matters most to you. This is an ancient idea.

Stoicism, a 2,000-year-old philosophy, teaches that experiences don’t define you but that your responses...


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