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Heidegger and a Hippo Walk Through Those Pearly Gates: Using Philosophy (and Jokes!) to Explore Life, Death, the Afterlife, and Everything in Between
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Heidegger and a Hippo Walk Through Those Pearly Gates: Using Philosophy (and Jokes!) to Explore Life, Death, the Afterlife, and Everything in Between

3.59  ·  Rating Details ·  1,602 Ratings  ·  204 Reviews
Heidegger and a Hippo Walk Through Those Pearly Gates: Using Philosophy (and Jokes!) to Explore Life, Death, the Afterlife, and Everything in Between
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published October 20th 2009 by Viking Adult (first published 2009)
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Jun 13, 2010 Reese rated it did not like it
This book actually reminded me of a dream that I made up. I'm at a hotel in the Catskills, and hundreds of once-upon-a-time comedians are competing for a chance to host SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE or replace greeters at Walmart -- whatever. So one guy after another does his "shtick"; I'm "plotzing" because even a Passover Seder is funnier and because the waiters aren't schlepping any big trays of food. Sometimes I catch a glimpse of men with beards and black hats; they're frantically explaining why chom ...more
Con Bé Ki
Apr 28, 2016 Con Bé Ki rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
Mua quyển này và đọc xong rồi mới thấy giá trị của 2 cuốn Cộng hòa và Chính trị luận mà mình đang đọc dang dở :( Đại khái là thà đọc mấy đoạn đối thoại khô như ngói ấy còn hơn là đọc mấy mẩu truyện cười không hề có một chút xíu kích thích như thế này huhuhu.
AmberBug **
Aug 27, 2013 AmberBug ** rated it did not like it
Shelves: audio-books
Review on Shelf Notes

Dear Reader,

This book made me roll my eyes so much they almost fell out of my eye sockets. What do you get when you mix really dumb jokes with basic philosophy? You'd think something interesting and fun, this was the opposite of that. Maybe it wasn't just for me... maybe it was meant for someone with a different sense of humor. The jokes just didn't get me going AT ALL. I laughed maybe once, if even that. However, I do believe there is an audience out there that could be int
Dec 09, 2009 kelly rated it it was ok
While I enjoy the jokes and cartoons (especially the cartoons) - i guess I was looking for more depth... I know what was I thinking? OK to be be honest - I was looking for an answer :)
Rafael Villegas
Apr 25, 2016 Rafael Villegas rated it it was amazing
I gave this book 5 stars because it introduces you to a variated array of philosophy--everything dealing with death and life.
It starts out with a little existentialism and quotes Sartre and Kierkegaard. It discusses death and our inevitable demise (do you fully understand that you're going to die?). then it goes into heaven and ideas that our spirit lives on after we die... this section I though was a little slow--just because of my uninterest? But what's great about the book is that it adds h
Al Bità
The title says it all... and obviously, with a title like that, you ought not to expect anything particularly deep, or too subtle (though the authors do tackle some of the complexities, they do tend to shy away from actually confronting them too deeply) — though, if you want depth, you can always follow up with some of the books included in the suggested books for further reading at the and of the book! Even so, the book covers most of the main ideas people have had about this vexed and often ve ...more
Jul 01, 2016 Kent rated it liked it
Shelves: philosophy, 2016
The subtitle covers the subject matter. After surveying many thoughts and belief on death and the afterlife, the authors come down to agnosticism and a general "to each his own" stance.

I wasn't really looking for answers--I have answers from the Bible. I bought the book for the stories and humor, and in this I was not disappointed. Below is a sampling:

--It is impossible to experience one’s own death objectively and still carry a tune. (Woody Allen, p. v)

--Everybody has got to die, but I always b
Jan 14, 2010 Michael rated it liked it
Shelves: nonfiction-read
The book provides a light-hearted look at the meaning of life and death as discussed by a number of philosophers, theologians, and scientists. Liberally illustrated with cartoons and jokes, it is best taken in small doses. I didn't find it as funny or as insightful as Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar, but it was a fun read. For someone with a limited exposure to philosophical thought, it might inspire further reading. I did enjoy and think well deserved the fun made of Heidegger's convoluted ...more
Ege Özmeral
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 07, 2011 Kenny rated it really liked it
Shelves: religion
A fun and funny overview of the various approaches to belief in the afterlife (or not), combined with some nice jokes, to wit:

The monitor confirmed cardiac arrest as an elderly man suddenly lost consciousness. After about twenty seconds of resuscitation, he came to. Explaining to him that his heart had momentarily stopped, the doctor asked if he remembered anything unusual during that time.

"I saw a bright light," he said, "and in front of me a man dressed in white."

Excitedly, the doctor asked if
Linda Robinson
Apr 04, 2010 Linda Robinson rated it it was amazing
The authors quote William Saroyan in the Introduction "Everybody has got to die, but I always believed an exception would be made in my case." Humans understand the concept of life cycle, but avert our gaze at cycle endpoint. It's easier to use Woody Allen as our guide to contemplating death than the universe.

Mingling Schopenhauer, Woody Allen, the apostle Paul, Gautama the Buddha, Descartes, Freud, Socrates, Einstein ("spooky action at a distance") and cartoons is brilliant coating on the bitte
Jan 21, 2012 Dustfinger rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
On the topic of philosophie books.
The problem with almost all of them is, that they either are too serious, so you can hardly enjoy them on an easy basis (only enjoy them out of interest on the topic) or are so easy going that they don't really touch the subject with enough depth.
This book is a good exaple of a book that tried to be both and that explained the theories quite well without beeing too complicated to read on holidays. Its fun and gives you a rough idea of the diffrent theories.
Graeme Wilkins
Dec 07, 2014 Graeme Wilkins rated it really liked it
They say that laughter is the best best medicine .. If you need a dose then look no further! The subject is death and immortality..the object is to inform via the famous observant philosophers along with cartoonists, to poke fun at the great questions by notable comics and well a researched "narrative" to enable the "common man/woman" to reach his/her conclusions...
A very enjoyable romp..
I loved Socrates' final words.. Some great wisdom to enlighten the generations. No!, ..purportedly he advised
Dec 28, 2015 Alysia rated it it was ok
I'm not sure about this book. I find the philosophy of life and death very interesting, but I didn't feel like I took anything new away from this book. There was a little bit of new information presented, but no new ideas. I failed to gain any further perspective from it so it wasn't my favorite read.
Merve S.
Hafif kişisel gelişim kitaplarına kayan yönünden midir, nedir tam olarak istediğimi bulamadım. Ama fena değildi, belki yayının diğer kitaplarıyla şansımı daha sonra denerim.
Daryl Seah
Mar 31, 2011 Daryl Seah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
quick enjoyable read. spoke to me... literally!
Thanh Nguyen
Jun 16, 2016 Thanh Nguyen rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 18, 2012 Greg rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
*Note: Copied from the review on my blog -

In keeping with my recent theme of reading books concerned with death, real or imaginary and totally unintentional on my part, I have finished Heidegger and a Hippo Walk Through Those Pearly Gates by Thomas Cathcart and Daniel Klein. The mention of pearly gates should give you a clear indication that this book is about death; Heidegger’s name lends to it a hint that some philosophy will be involved and the hippo… well
Aug 19, 2012 Claire rated it it was ok
In the beginning, I laughed my ass off at some of the jokes. But as I continued on I found myself less and less interested. After reading over two thirds I just skimmed it to the end. The dialogue with Daryl was annoying and really detracted from the book over. Here were the jokes that made me crack up.

Suicide is our way of saying to God, “You can’t fire me, I quit!” – Bill Maher

Old Sol Bloom lay dying in his bed, when he suddenly smelled the aroma of his favourite strudel wafting up the stairs
Dec 09, 2014 Ed rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone interested in life and death
I have friend who refuses to read books because in college, as an engineering student, he had to concentrate on every word. I feel the same way about philosophy books and have avoided them over the years. Then I discovered "Plato and a Platypus Walk Into Bar". This introduction to Philosophy helped me, at least, know what the different schools of philosophy were and the very basic concepts of philosophical thought.

I also believe that most people do not want to think about death even though it i
Ferda Nihat Koksoy
Feb 10, 2016 Ferda Nihat Koksoy rated it liked it
Shelves: philosophy
-YAŞARKEN HER GÜN VE SAATİ FARK EDEREK YAŞAMAK, şairlerin ve özel insanların haddi olabilir.

-İtalyan Rivierası'nda ölüm üzerine yazan filozof yoktur (Nietzsche).

-Ölümün inkarı, UYGARLIĞIN hayatta kalma stratejisidir (Nietzsche).

-KAYGI bizim nihai öğretmenimizdir ve insanın ÖLÜM UÇURUMUNUN KIYISINDA ANLAMLI YAŞAM SÜRME zorunluluğuna eşlik eder (Kierkegaard).

-Ölümün yanıbaşında, HEP ÖLECEKMİŞ GİBİ yaşayabilme şansını herkes elde edemez (MEMENTO MOR
Dec 25, 2011 Nick rated it it was amazing
Shelves: philosophy, humor
It is written in a humorous, conversational style interspersed with imaginary dialogue, cartoons, and jokes. The color changes and cartoons make this a good book qua book. In other word, Id not want to read the kindle version without pictures and color. Some of the jokes are better than others, but overall they were pretty clever and relevant to the philosophical points they accompany.

Its thought provoking, but not deep. Stimulating, but doesn't dive into the nitty gritty of these issues. Howeve
Dylan Popowicz
Jul 24, 2011 Dylan Popowicz rated it liked it
[To be printed in The Sacramento Book Review]

The joking-philosopher duo are back, and this time around they have delved deeply into the realms of man's mortality. In a wonderfully written, well-paced romp through the philosophy of Death (and Life), Cathcart and Klein cover the likes of Keirkegaard, Heidegger, Husserl, Sartre, Freud and William James—blended with public polls, scientific discoveries, and theories of the future (from cryogenetics to teleportation) . And whereas most books of this
Nov 18, 2013 Thom rated it liked it
This is one more in a series of light-hearted but useful romps through some issues of philosophy. Of the three I've read so far, this one is the most serious. All of the books have helped clarify who my "favorites" are (Kirkegaard, William James, and Paul Tillich remain high on my list). This one closes with a shout out to James that captures my feelings toward the study of philosophy in general, and so I'll share it:
"But there's this one guy who stands out from the pack, an American philosopher
Wes Hazard
Mar 24, 2013 Wes Hazard rated it liked it
A light book cracking wise and playfully introducing some of the core arguments/philosophies/perspectives about a very heavy subject that we all, ultimately, become *very* familiar with. This book strives to be a death-oriented philosophy 101 course overlaid with the humor of the New Yorker Caption Contest and on that front it succeeds pretty damn well. Structurally it's presented as a conversation between its two authors and their skeptical/regular-Joe neighbor "Daryl" as they talk about the pe ...more
Jag har svårt att sätta ord på Heidegger and a Hippo. Filosofi är en genre som jag normalt sett aldrig läser och kan med det erkänna att jag inte har någon större kunskap om det heller. Jag gillade däremot Cathcarts och Kleins förra bok, Plato and a Platypus, så jag beslöt mig för att även läsa denna bok. Jag blev heller inte besviken på denna även om jag föredrar Plato and a Platypus.

I Heidegger and a Hippo utforskar författarna ämnen som människans sökande efter odödlighet och vad det är som h
These two guys take philosophical thoughts, works, etc... about life and death from the works of different historical philosophers like Descartes, William James, Friedrich Nietzsche, Socrates, Plato, and many more, and put it together in this accessible little book. Accessible to some extent, of course. But instead of reading a dry, philosophical work, here the thoughts, impressions and what not are interspersed with jokes and anecdotes.

Of all the jokes, only a handful are good. Now, were the jo
Jul 11, 2010 trina rated it liked it
Recommends it for: impatient folks who don't like philosophy but enjoy jokes
fluffy little book of philosophy for people like me who have no patience for the absurd circumlocution of most philosophers and the ridiculous abstraction of the topics they cover. covers everyone from socrates, the father of philosophy, to martin heidegger and why he won't get into heaven over a hippo, and woody allen (ne allan stewart konigsberg). replete with jokes and comics and colloquialisms, and an imaginary everyman named daryl who is petrified of death and wants our authors to reassure ...more
May 11, 2014 Shawn rated it it was amazing
(WARNING: Corny jokes ahead) That should be the warning on the front of this book. As the subtitle states and many reviewers have noted, this book contains jokes that are pretty corny. I found it not too bad, but you have to be in the mood for that kind of humour.

This book is about one of the biggest topics in our lives. What happens after this? Adding humour to the book is a pretty good idea to break up the "death anxiety" as they put it.

Through the book, a number of philosophical and religiou
Mar 05, 2010 Amy rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
I love these books -- learning philosophy through jokes and in this case "using philosophy (and jokes!) to explore life, death, the afterlife, and everything in between".

Raised in a funeral home, I've heard most of these jokes, stories, etc. before, but this is the best story that I read in the book:

Under the heading "The Perverted Will-to-Live on Death Row"

An Italian, a Frenchman, and an American are about to be executed. They're told they can have whatever they want for their last meal.

Tony re
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Won it but it hasn't arrived yet :( 2 13 Dec 10, 2009 08:43PM  
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Thomas Cathcart and Daniel Klein wrote the bestselling Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar: Understanding Philosophy Through Jokes, which will be translated into more than a dozen languages. Not bad for a couple of philosophy majors from Harvard who tried on various careers after graduation. Tom worked with street gangs in Chicago, doctors at Blue Cross and Blue Shield, and dropped in and out of ...more
More about Thomas Cathcart...

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“It's only when we dare to experience the full anxiety of knowing that life doesn't go on forever that we can experience transcendence and get in touch with the infinite. To use an analogy from gestalt psychology, Non-Being is the necessary ground for the figure of Being to make itself known to us. It's only when we're willing to let go of all of our illusions and admit that we are lost and helpless and terrified that we will be free of ourselves and our false securities and ready for what Kierkegaard calls "the leap of faith."

p. 43”
“Doctor: I have some good news and some bad news. Patient: What’s the good news? Doctor: The tests you took showed that you have twenty-four hours to live. Patient:That’s the good news? What’s the bad news? Doctor: I forgot to call you yesterday.” 1 likes
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