Here you will find a short, convenient and friendly summary of the major and influential ideas of modern philosophers. The most important thing to point out here is the fact that this work is written by an amateur, and therefore is primarily addressed to non-academics. Everything that I have learned about philosophy, I have learned on my own, though internet and books and not in any academic capacity. This no doubt brings certain limitations of perspective and quality. For some this may immediately render this work worthless, and perhaps that may be so for academic purposes, but for many others like me who are driven by a love for philosophy and seek to learn from wherever they can, this may be useful. (Though, from the feedback I have received over the years, many students have benefited from this work as well.)

If I would recommend this book to you, it would not be because of the depth of its contents, but rather because of its simplicity. This book will provide you with a basic skeleton of comprehension of modern philosophy, and then you can study the areas which interest you in greater detail from professional resources.

When I started working on this book around seven years back, I was near the end of my teenage. It was meant to be a collection of philosophy notes for my own personal use, but eventually it ended up in this form. Over the years I have learned more about philosophy and have come to recognize that this work has many limitations. Although required, a full-scale revision of this is not possible for me now or in recent future. As many readers have found it useful, I do not wish to take it down as well. The best compromise seems to let it remain so with a warning for readers.

In the end, I can only say like Carl Sagan that when one is in love, one wants to shout out and tell the world about. This book was the result of my love for philosophy and my desire to passionately tell the world about it; this is its only justification, despite my own lack of expertise in the subject.

Any comments or suggestions are most welcome.

Awais Aftab

October 2012

The author is a medical doctor.


This book is dedicated to

‘The Riwazian Blues’:
Ardis, Dauphin and Hasnain
Saad Javed