Sophie's World, By Jostein Gaarder Essay

1102 words - 4 pages

In Sophie's World, Jostein Gaarder teaches philosophy and it explains basic philosophical ideas better than any other reading book or textbook that I have ever read. The many philosophical lessons of the diversified thinkers of their own time were dexterously understood. The author has a wonderful knack for finding the heart of a concept and placing it on display. For example, he metamorphoses Democritus' atoms into Lego bricks and in a stroke makes the classical conception of the atom dexterously attainable. He relates all the abstract concepts about the world and what is real with straightforward everyday things that everyone can relate to which makes this whole philosophy course manageable. ''The best way of approaching philosophy is to ask a few philosophical questions: How was the world created? Is there any will or meaning behind what happens? Is there a life after death? How can we answer these questions? And most important, how ought we to live?'' (Gaarder, Jostein 15).
As time befalls, Sophie begins acquiring more correspondence, this time addressed to a girl named Hilde, but really it seems as though it were to be written in Sophie's name. Some of the correspondence comes as postcards. All are from the faraway Hilde's father, who seems to be boundless and celestial and intent on fluttering up Sophie's life. As the philosophy lessons come and go Hilde's world and Sophie's World seem to converge and merge more and more until the Grand and Mysterious Revelation that is at the center of Sophie's "World" finally makes the scene.
Steadily she comes into possession of either a white envelope containing flabbergasted questions or a brown envelope containing type written papers disciplining her about what philosophy is and unraveling to her all these philosophers and their theories. Sophie’s first lesson in philosophy was, “What is philosophy?”. How I understood what was being affirmed was that philosophy is the inquiry for beliefs and an essay of the basic concepts said in the expression of such beliefs. It isn't hard “to know what is right and do it right” (Gaarder, Jostein 60). Next Sophie learned about was Thales. According to Thales, the original principle of all things is water, from which everything fares and into which everything is again resolved. My analysis on that is how can he come to that conclusion? Yes, all living things contain water within themselves, however, it seems preposterous for him to say that we evolved from water. Living things not only contain water but contain substances.
Another philosopher that was pointed out along with Thales was Anaximander. Anaximander held that all things hereafter recoils to the element from which they originated. ''Everything is in constant flux and movement, nothing is abiding''(Gaarder, Jostein 36). As a plant demise it shatters into the ground and the ground is where the plant commenced from, so I can see where Anaximander could propound that. We understand that ''Our world is...

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