Book Group

Book Discussion Group on “How to Live a Good Life”
This is an experiment by Paul Baier.   We will try one meeting and then go from there.

Next meeting: Sunday, July 30, 7p-8:30p at Panera Bread, Newton Centre to ead and discuss On Old Age by Cicero. Email Paul for PDF.

Group Goal and Meeting Format
  • The goal is to understand different views on how to live a good life. The group is aimed at adults age 45+. The key questions
    • What is a “good life”? How is it defined?
    • How do others advocate for finding happiness, contentment and serenity?
    • Practically, how should one best manage career, family, friendships, community?
    • What can one learn from others about managing one’s life in their 40s, 50s and 60s?
    • What are different concepts of the meaning of life?
    • How does one age vibrantly and gracefully?
  • Format
    • 7p-8p Part 1: Moderated discussion 60 min
    • Intro and ground rules
      • Goal is to understand what the author is saying. Start with 3-5 written questions
    • 8:p Part 2: Open discussion  30 min
      • Do I agree or disagree with the author? Why?
      • How does this reading change my view?
    • 8:30p end

Reading candidates (not in any order);  aim for <2hours of reading time

We aim to use the same version of each reading to make it easier when referring to page numbers and to avoid translation issues (the links below are to a version sold on Amazon)

Completed Readings
  • On Contentment, by Plutarch. Ask Paul for PDF version

Next Reading
  • On Old Age by Cicero (email Paul for copy of translation we are using)
Other candidate

Discussion Rules for Part 1 (Draft)
  • A moderator is named before before the meeting and the moderator role is to ensure the conversation says on track, is solely focused on understanding what the author is trying to say, and within time.  The moderator should also have 3 questions to guide discussion.
  • The goal of Part 1 for the everyone to ensure a shared understanding the author's message with references only to assigned material (no secondary sources). Personal opinions can be discussed in Part 2.