If the Little Prince of Saint-Exupéry was with us today, what would he like to teach us? Christine Michaud and the emeritus professor of philosophy Thomas De Koninck answer this question together, establishing 10 keys to better living in a book written by four hands, The Little Prince is always alive . The book recalls the passage of Saint-Exupéry in Quebec, many years ago, and his meeting with Thomas, while young.
In May 1942, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry spent the evening in Quebec in the house of his friend Charles De Koninck. During the evening, little Thomas de Koninck asked the aviator-philosopher thousands of questions. Legend has it that Thomas inspired him with the story of The Little Prince, written some time later.
Since then, Thomas De Koninck has not stopped questioning himself. He even became professor emeritus of philosophy at Laval University. And he accepts with discretion this affiliation with the famous character. A plaque commemorates Saint-Ex's visit, on the facade of the house that was his childhood, on rue Sainte-Geneviève, in Old Quebec.
Christine Michaud invited him to open up more and together, they wondered about the legacy bequeathed by the Little Prince.
In 10 themes, they invite readers to reflect on beauty, the search for meaning, happiness, emotional ties, solidarity, conscience, childhood, Providence, God and the invisible. Essential themes to guide readers towards a more conscious, more fruitful, happier life. Christine Michaud was deeply moved to meet Thomas De Koninck, 86, initially for a completely different project that will see the light of day later this fall. She immediately appreciated his humility, his dedication, his generosity and his healthy values of life, she says. “I fell in love with Thomas. I found him extremely touching. It is incredible, the baggage of knowledge that he has! He's super interesting. ”
Thus was born the idea of making a book with him. “I wanted to tell his story, but above all to ensure that all his baggage of knowledge and wisdom is transmitted. He no longer teaches. He still has a few doctoral students, but what he passed on has always been at the university level. I found his knowledge useful to the general public. ” She felt that she had to move forward with this project: a new mission to accomplish. “I told myself that it did not happen to him for nothing, this story of Saint-Exupéry. This is precisely what makes his knowledge to be transmitted. ”
Christine Michaud and he quickly decided on the 10 themes of the book and met on multiple occasions, before the pandemic, to discuss philosophy, literature, psychology and life.
At the same time, Christine read the entire work of Saint-Exupéry, so as to extract important elements. “I loved it. I was immersed in his work and it was wonderful. There are titles that spoke to me a lot – nuggets. ” The bestselling author considers that The Little Prince is still alive transmits the knowledge and wisdom of Thomas De Koninck and at the same time makes Saint-Exupéry rediscover.
“It makes you want to reread The Little Prince , maybe even read other books by him. Spending time with Thomas was like a gift of life. ”
♦ Christine Michaud studied positive psychology with Tal Ben-Shahar, the great professor of happiness at Harvard.
♦ She has written several bestsellers .
♦ It presents conferences and training sessions every year.
♦ Thomas De Koninck is professor emeritus at the Faculty of Philosophy of Laval University.
♦ He was made a Member of the Order of Canada in 2004 and won the 2013 Book Prize from the Canadian Philosophical Association for his book Questions ultimes (PUO, 2012).
♦ This year marks the 120th anniversary of birth of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry.
The Little Prince is still alive
Christine Michaud and Thomas De Koninck
200 pages “> The Little Prince is still alive
Christine Michaud and Thomas De Koninck
“ What are we going to create in this life? What will we leave as a trace of our passage on this earth? These are questions that generate meaning. What are these impulses of the soul that work on us from the inside, these intuitions of what we could achieve during our existence? Are there not irresistible cravings in us that have remained unfulfilled for too long? What would give more authentic intensity to our life? These are avenues for reflection to put into action to move forward, deploy our potential and thus give meaning to our existence. “