“The experience, the community, the insights, pure love — the School is a trip down the rabbit hole …”

Vanja Bokun Popovic

“I’ve been studying at this school since 1995. It has added richness, depth and meaning to my life.”

Hal Friedman

“This is a great place that encourages you to stop and reflect on your life. It helped me identify what was most important and it continues to provide the support needed to realize it.”

Jerry Baylock

Philosophy Works is a ten-session course designed to encourage students to regain their natural sense of wonder, gaining greater access to their inner happiness, wisdom and strength.

It is not an academic survey of great philosophical ideas as one might find in a university. Rather it is an introduction to a series of proven principles that enable students to attain greater self-knowledge and better their lives through reasonable, compassionate living. The proof of Practical Philosophy’s effectiveness is found in personal experience.

The curriculum is inspired by the philosophy of Advaita (“not two”), and embraces a wide range of philosophical ideas, tapping into the wisdom of the great minds of East and West, including Plato, Socrates, the Buddha, Shakespeare, Emerson and Shri Shantananda Saraswati.

While the wisdom of East and West is presented, much of the learning that students experience comes from their fellow students and their own experience and innate wisdom. The tutors, who direct the classes, are ongoing students in the School who have been practicing Practical Philosophy for many years and generously offer their own insights.

The classes are not lectures, but lively, interactive explorations of life’s “big questions.” Who are we, really? What is our purpose? What is wisdom? Can we be wise? To enhance this journey of self-discovery one learns key skills for dealing with stress and anxiety, harnessing the power of attention, and cultivating the means for regularly experiencing stillness and inner peace.

Given the exploratory approach, students are encouraged to neither accept nor reject the principles presented in class, but to test out their value by applying them to their daily lives.

Significant benefits accrue from attending the classes and practicing the principles offered, including self-knowledge, more authentic living, strengthened levels of awareness, and an opening of the heart — all of which lead to greater confidence, increased happiness, a sense of freedom, and more meaningful relationships.

Philosophy Works is accessible to all who are sincerely interested in self-discovery. All that is needed is an open mind and a willingness to examine the ideas that govern one’s life.

For the Fall Term, starting the week of Septembr 9-14, there course fee is $90 for ten weeks of classes. Online classes are also available.

Please note this term, the School is offering Philosophy Works classes in two locations: at our 12 East 79th Street location & at the West Side YMCA at 5 West 63rd Street.


7pm – 9:15pm – 12 E. 79th Street
Tuesday7pm – 9:15pm – 12 E. 79th Street

9:30am – 11:45am – 5 W. 63rd Street
7pm – 9:15pm – 12 E. 79th Street

7pm – 9:15pm – 12 E. 79th Street
Saturday10:00am – 12:15pm – 12 E. 79th Street

The School of Practical Philosophy
12 East 79th Street, New York City, 10075
(between 5th & Madison Ave; walk from #6 train at 77th St.)

West Side YMCA
West 63rd Street
New York, NY 10023

Deadline, Guest, Refund and Course Sequence Policies:

      • There are no refunds after the term begin; requests for refund received in writing before the start of the term will have a 20% administrative fee deducted.
      • We regret that guests are not permitted.
      • Registration must be made online — not in-person or by phone.
      • There is a prerequisite for all classes except Philosophy Works (the Introductory Course) and a set progression from class to class. Classes may not be repeated without permission. For a full list of these policies, please click here.