The Problems of Philosophy by Bertrand Russell
Bertrand Arthur William Russell (18 May 1872 - 2 February 1970) was a British philosopher, logician, mathematician, historian, atheist, socialist, pacifist, and social critic. Although he spent most of his life in England, he was born in Wales where he also died, aged 97.
Russell led the British "revolt against idealism" in the early 1900s. He is considered one of the founders of analytic philosophy. His work has had a considerable influence on logic, mathematics, eugenics, set theory, linguistics, and philosophy, especially philosophy of language, epistemology, and metaphysics.
In 1950, Russell was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature, "in recognition of his varied and significant writings in which he champions humanitarian ideals and freedom of thought.
A few Quotes from The Problems of Philosophy:
"Is there any knowledge in the world which is so certain that no reasonable man could doubt it?"
"Whoever wishes to become a philosopher must learn not to be frightened by absurdities."
"Some care is needed in using Descartes' argument. "I think, therefore I am" says rather more than is strictly certain. It might seem as though we are quite sure of being the same person to-day as we were yesterday, and this is no doubt true in some sense. But the real Self is as hard to arrive at as the real table, and does not seem to have that absolute, convincing certainty that belongs to particular experiences.
"Philosophy, though unable to tell us with certainty what is the true answer to the doubts which it raises, is able to suggest many possibilities which enlarge our thoughts and free them from the tyranny of custom. Thus, while diminishing our feeling of certainty as to what things are, it greatly increases our knowledge as to what the may be; it removes the somewhat arrogant dogmatism of those who have never traveled into the region of liberating doubt, and it keeps alive our sense of wonder by showing familiar things in an unfamiliar aspect."