segunda-feira, 28 de novembro de 2011


Jorge Humberto Dias, director do nosso Gabinete, escreveu o PREFÁCIO da obra que agora se publica: «UPSIDE DOWN WORLD - THE LOSS OF THE SACRED COSMOS» é o título do livro escrito pelo professor americano Eugene Crowley Jr.

Para comprar o livro, clique AQUI

Pode ler uma parte do livro no Google Books: AQUI

Revelamos aqui o Prefácio:


“Crisis” is the word most used in Portugal, in Europe and in America in the past months. But why? Ask the lector, ask me and ask the author of this book, Eugene Crowley JR. When you are watching TV, listening to the radio or reading a newspaper, the word appears as an explication for everything. All the diagnosis has one state of the art: “global crisis – local crisis – global crisis.” We live in a time of circular thinking about the world. No one is responsible, but everybody is in the same “boat”…Our time is rich in solutions to solve all the problems this crisis has created. Some professionals advise a diet, others advise the practice of sports and others advise a good job in order to be happy. We have today a lot of opportunities to choose the best way. I don’t think that we only have one solution.
First of all, I think the main problem is in our spirit, as Eugene Crowley thinks. The scientific age brought us the claim for objectivity and demonstration in everything we do, think and/or investigate. I have no doubt that science is very important for this world. The evolution we live is a great answer to some problems we need to solve. But what happens with the big one, the spiritual problem of society and of persons? Where is the human spirit? Which is the way he wants to go? Where is happiness? For example, in friendship, I have a lot of difficulty seeing the spirit that joins two persons. What do we have in front of our eyes? Money? Professional interests? Loneliness? What? If you don’t have any spiritual relationships, where mutual projects are priorities to both friends, I think we will have an end sooner. But that’s what we have in all relationships: an instable time with a frequent change. In this historical circumstance, persons don’t have real friends. You only have “fictional” individuals in your neighborhood. This is only one example in our lives. The same process occurs in other dimensions, like job, family, free time, citizenship participation, political intervention, etc. This is the great power of “superior” groups and modes installed to facilitate the direction of elected individuals, who are only interested in the development of their own power. So, within this political context, “crisis” has the best road to grow. Without any sensible thinking, the administration forgets the value of each person and human relations and invests all its forces in the construction of its empire. There is no more equilibrium in life. Every day you lose a little bit more. Instead of recuperation, which you deserve urgently, you have fourteen hours more of negative energy. After a while, you feel bad and you are looking for some type of help.
As Eugene Crowley says, traditionally, you have a psychologist to ask for consultation. But some problems are philosophical—as the quest for meaning in life—and the professionals of clinical health don’t have any academic preparation to help with this specific issue. Since the ‘80s, we have the philosophical consultation because of the innovative courage of Gerd Achenbach (in Germany) and the marketing talent of Lou Marinoff (in the United States). After twenty-nine years of work, we have a lot of philosophical offices open to anyone who wants a philosophical consultation. Problems with questions like happiness, human relations, value conflicts, death, truth and love may be presented and discussed with a philosophical counselor. So I think Eugene Crowley’s book is an interesting proposal for those who are worried by these types of philosophical questions.
In fact, Crowley presents us a larger horizon of analyses, including reflections on cultural anthropology, spirituality, mythological studies, the history of wisdom and social psychology. The indications of the author and the work of philosophical counselors are in the same way: they attempt to apply human philosophical thought to the problems of daily life. That’s why I liked the reference to Alain De Botton’s book, The Consolations of Philosophy: “Philosophy is a discursive practice where life is the object; reason the medium and happiness the objective. It pretends better thought to better life. To Andre Comte-Sponville, Philosophy is necessary because man is not always happy.”* Upside Down World is much more than a philosophical consultation; it is a superior proposal for those people who are in an existential crisis (and even people who are not), people who need to find meaning in their lives and need to empower meaning in their lives.

—Dr. Jorge Humberto Dias
Director of the PROJECT@ Office,
Philosophical Consulting Services, Portugal


*Jorge Humberto Dias, “La Felicidad como Objetivo de la Filosofía Aplicada,” in AAVV, Filosofía Aplicada a Personas y Grupos, Doss Ediciones. 2nd ed. (Sevilla), p. 64.