The Philosophy of Today is both a religion and a philosophy; it satisfies both spiritual needs and intellectual demands. It has given up on traditional religion, monotheistic religion. It doesn’t believe in a Creator God, a Ruling God, a Judging God. But it also is wary of atheism because it believes that the universe is suffused with energy, power, mystery, even a kind of consciousness. Thus, it isn’t exactly atheist, and it isn’t exactly theist; one might say that it defines god in a different way, or calls god by a different name.

The Philosophy of Today is akin to Eastern worldviews, such as Zen, insofar as those Eastern worldviews are both a philosophy and a religion, and those Eastern worldviews are neither atheist nor theist (in a Western sense). The Philosophy of Today heals the rift that has sundered philosophy and religion since the time of Descartes. Religion has long been based on faith and revelation, while philosophy has been based on reason. But our religion isn’t based on faith, and our philosophy isn’t based on reason.  Continue


Conversations With Great Thinkers
Most people today never become truly educated — even if they graduate from college. Colleges today emphasize vocational training instead of education in the humanities. Even students who focus on the humanities usually acquire only specialized knowledge, not broad education.

This book brings together the various branches of the humanities... Continue
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Reader Comments:
Arthur Waldron, Lauder Professor of Int'l Relations, U. of Pennsylvania: "A unique and fascinating book, a rare modern example of philosophy the way it was written before professionalization."
Dong Leshan, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences: "I read the book at one breath, and liked it very much. Every chapter contains flashes of wisdom. It's the product of wide reading and deep thinking."
Who's Hammond?
I became acquainted with philosophy and literature at age fifteen. Until then, I was interested mainly in sports, like other American youngsters. But when I stumbled across a world history textbook, a textbook that had been written for youngsters, the whole world of culture was suddenly revealed to me. The historical personage who caught my imagination most was...  Continue
My Journey
Who's Nietzsche?
General Remarks
On the Writer as Father Figure
The Dostoyevsky-Nietzsche Equation
Nietzsche's Break With Schopenhauer
Nietzsche and Freud on Morality
Nietzsche's Big Idea: Morality = Decadence
More on Nietzsche
Who's Shakespeare?
The conventional view is that Shakespeare was a man from the small, country town of Stratford. Many people, however, reject the conventional view, and argue that Shakespeare was the pen name of... Continue

Oxford vs. Stratford: A Short Introduction
Why Stratfordians Are So Stubborn
Shakespeare: Objective or Subjective?
Shakespeare's Worldview
Hamlet's Dark Side
Shakespeare's Secret Son:
  The Prince Tudor Theory

Travels & Memoirs
A Connecticut Yankee in the Land of the Dragon
Ten Days in France
Two Weeks in England
Two Weeks in Italy
Two Weeks in Prague & Germany
Summer on Nantucket
Nantucket Notes
My Youth in China
  by Yafei Hu and L. James Hammond
A Baby From China
Caribbean Notes
A Week in Saint Martin
A Caribbean Cruise
The Inca Trail
When I Was A Girl: The Memoirs of
  Louisa Ashley Hammond, 1831-1912

History & Current Events
Who Shot John F. Kennedy?
Jihad Philosophy: Qutb & Shariati
Kristols, Neo-conservatives, Iraq, etc.
Leo Strauss and George W. Bush
Bush vs. Kerry
The Weekly Standard
Andrew Sullivan vs. David Brooks
Quiz: Ten Neglected Philosophers
1. This American philosopher touched the lives of tens of millions of Americans with his books and his TV appearances. He deals with the major philosophical questions, yet he isn’t viewed as a philosopher. As a boy, he visited the Museum of Natural History in New York, and this visit shaped his career. Died in 1987.
Fill in blank. Last name is sufficient.

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Dispute With Analytic Philosophers
In September, 1994, I began using the Internet. I joined a group called PHILOSOP, which described itself as a "Philosophy Discussion Forum." Most of the members of the group were philosophy professors.
After I had been in PHILOSOP a few days, I posted the following message:  Continue
Decadence and Renaissance
(Chapter 12 of Conversations With Great Thinkers)
Seven Theses
I.Organisms have life- and death-instincts.
II.Society is an organism.
III. Society has life- and death-instincts.
IV.When the life-instinct is predominant in a society, the result is a renaissance-type society; when the death-instinct is predominant in a society, the result is a decadent society.
V.When the death-instinct in a society reaches an extreme, it turns into its opposite, the life-instinct.
VI.Decadence, or the death-instinct, has now reached an extreme in most Western societies.
VII.The death-instinct, having reached an extreme in most Western societies, will now turn into its opposite, the life-instinct. Thus, most Western societies are at the start of a renaissance. Continue
Feedback on This Site
See what others have said about this website, and about my e-zine (Phlit). Send your own feedback. Continue
A Philosopher's Notebook:
Quotations and Commentary
Next to the originator of a good sentence is the first quoter of it. --Emerson
Proust Passages from Proust, arranged by subject
Emerson Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), American philosopher, best known for his Essays
Napoleon Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821), emperor of France; these selections are from books on Napoleon
Ortega José Ortega y Gasset (1883-1955), Spanish philosopher, best known for his Revolt of the Masses
Thoreau Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862), American philosopher, best known as the author of Walden
Philosophy Talks on YouTube
Click here for a series of videos on the Philosophy of Today.
Realms of Gold:
A Sketch of Western Literature
1. Philosophy
Ancient Philosophers
Descartes and Pascal
Other French Philosophers
Other British Philosophers
Lichtenberg, Kant and Hegel
Weininger and Spengler
2. Psychology
Other Psychologists
Psychological Interpretations of
   Literature and Art

3. Literature
Mann and Hesse
Other Russian Writers
Other English Writers
Robert Louis Stevenson
Rudyard Kipling
E. M. Forster
D. H. Lawrence
Shaw and Wells
Chesterton and Belloc
Evelyn Waugh and Graham Greene
Somerset Maugham
Wodehouse and Christie
Anatole France
Other French Writers
Three Spanish Writers
Washington Irving
James Fenimore Cooper
Mark Twain
Henry Adams
Henry James
Jack London
Thomas Wolfe
Other American Writers
Kundera, Musil, and Broch
Middle-Eastern and Indian Poets
Isaac Bashevis Singer
Ancient Writers

4. History
General History
Ancient History
Medieval History
Renaissance History
American History
Napoleon and Hitler
Kedourie, etc.
Goitein and Grunebaum
Other Modern Historians
Biographies and Autobiographies
5. Miscellaneous
Other Art Historians
Bloom and Edmundson
Matthew Arnold
Max Weber
Thorstein Veblen
Morris and Lorenz
Richard Feynman
Philip Howard
Laurens van der Post
Frazer, etc.
Zen Literature
Tibetan Wisdom
Joseph Campbell
Lovejoy, Kuhn, and the History of Science