I am a philosophical practitioner from Athens, Greece, based in Berlin, where I received my Ph.D. from Humboldt University. My areas of interest are History of Philosophy, Contemporary Philosophy, Aesthetics (Philosophy of Music), Philosophical Anthropology and Practical Philosophy.
As a philosophical practitioner, I offer education and consulting services for individuals and organizations. I have conducted philosophical cafés for the wide public and workshops for counseling professionals. My current focus lies on the development of education and consulting formats inspired by philosophy and literature.
My book publications include a monograph on Nietzsche’s philosophy of music in German, a novel in Greek, and an anthology of Early German Romanticism.
There are many different ways to open a philosophical café: pose a question, give a talk, read a philosophical quote. Or ask the public what they would like to discuss. Each form carries its own challenges by inviting different forms of discussion.
The practice of letter-writing has a long history in philosophy. A key-text of the Hellenistic tradition is Epicure's famous Letter to Menoeceus. It is not hard to imagine why letters have always been of importance for philosophical practice. Philosophical practice is, above all, a dialogue. And what else are letters been but silent dialogues between friends in absence, as the humanists claim?
One of the most challenging topics in philosophical counseling is love. Love is more an emotion than a philosophical term. To speak about love is difficult – partly because of the ineffability of emotions and partly because of their individual character as feelings.
Many philosophical practitioners love to hate academic philosophy. Does the contrast between philosophical practice and academic philosophy correspond to the facts of the real world? I believe not. On the contrary, the discrepancy between academic philosophy and philosophical practice is a rhetoric construction to serve identity problems of some philosophical practitioners.
The ancient Greeks believed that the death of a person had a great deal to say about his life. Henri Bergson died on January 3rd 1941 of pneumonia after having waited hours in the queue in order to get his David star as a French Jew, as the Germans, who had occupied France, dictated.
It is not hard to imagine what we expect to find in a philosophical practitioner's library: Hardcover classics like Aristotle's Nichomahean Ethics, less known writings, and, of course, the works of one’s beloved philosophers. Probably, we would also find works of literature. Some of them, I guess, could claim for themselves the status of a philosophical work.
To sing or not to sing? The literature of philosophical practice contains astonishingly spare entrances on the issue of a canon for philosophical practice. Are philosophical practice and the notion of a canon incompatible? Does a corpus of canonical texts reduce the freedom of philosophical practitioners?
Manos Perrakis is a philosophical practitioner from Athens, Greece. Currently based in Berlin, Germany, he offers education and consulting services for individuals and organizations.
Canons provide philosophical practitioners with valuable tools for their work. They make them familiar with texts and authors or with traditions they weren't aware of or attentive enough to. On the whole, canons offer impulses and help us refine our philosophical perspective. That is the standard benefit of canons.
The great significance of canons is that they initiate discussions about crucial issues concerning a discipline, issues of identity, of genealogies, and future perspectives. Today, the landscape of philosophical practice seems more colorful than ever. At the same time, it seems that philosophical practice has also become an umbrella term for various practices.