Michel de Montaigne was a philosopher during the French Renaissance. His writing brought the use of the essay into a popular literary form and specialized in critical thinking and skepticism. He was very introspective in his writings and he focused on the self. Marcel Tetal commented on Montaigne, “From the beginning to the end of his writings, Montaigne points to the supremacy of living, the existence of the self, and the integration of the self with his environment and with the Essays.” And Montaigne him self said, “My trade and my art is living”. His emphasis of the individual opened a new perspective as society moved from the medieval life-style of serfdom, slavery and segregation of opportunity to the ideals of the renaissance.
His thoughts and essays were influential in the shaping of other writers and philosophers, such as Rene Descartes, Friedrich Nietzsche and William Shakespeare.
It is pretty incredible that someone who lived so long ago could be influential throughout centuries.
It makes me wonder, are our thoughts important? Are they important even if they aren’t seen by other people?Are they worth developing and recording?