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Inner Freedom (A nous la liberté!)



Original Language: French | 530 pp. | January 2019

2 Seas Represents World English, Dutch, Portuguese, Brazilian, Norwegian, Swedish, Finnish, Danish, Icelandic, Estonian, Latvian, Lithuanian, Albanian, Croatian, Czech, Slovak, Hungarian, Bulgarian, Romanian, Serbian, Slovenian, Greek, Turkish, Arabic and Hebrew rights. All other rights handled by les Editions de l’Iconoclaste

Rights sold: Romania (Trei), USA (Sounds True, WEL), Italy (Neri Pozza), Brazil (Palas Athena), Spain (Arpa)

Initial print run: 120,000 copies


A co-edition between Allary Editions and L’Iconoclaste.

Three wise men in search of freedom. In Freedom for All of Us, the monk Matthieu Ricard, the psychiatrist Christophe André and the philosopher Alexandre Jollien explain how each of us can overcome the psychological barriers and blossom. — Le Point

The comeback of the three friends: Christophe André, Alexandre Jollien, Matthieu Ricard, the famous Three Friends in Search of Wisdom, meet again for Freedom for All of Us! (…). In this new essay, the psychiatrist, the philosopher and the Buddhist monk choose this time to talk about inner freedom, inviting the readers to get away from their fears and prejudices and be more happy! — Livres Hebdo

Inner freedom allows us to approach with more serenity our existence. – Alexandre Marchi, L’Est Républicain

Matthieu Ricard is not afraid of anything. He explains his doubts about the false gods of our time, individualism, cynicism, materialism, psychoanalyst and so on. – Le Figaro Magazine

A plea for altruism, happiness, wisdom, benevolence. – RTBF

Three friends show us the path to inner freedom

Three years after the immense success of Three Friends in Search of Wisdom (over 450,000 copies sold), this is a new book, inspired, inspiring and useful, on one of the central themes of the human condition: inner liberty.

“The exterior freedom we shall reach depends upon the degree of inner liberty we shall have acquired.”— Gandhi         

The genesis of this new book            

A year after the publication of their book, the three friends got together for a vacation in the Swiss mountains. On the agenda, long walks, skiing, and sledding. But their old habits proved too strong, and in the evening, by the fireside, their discussions began anew and they were flooded with ideas. They could not allow these rich conversations to just slip away; they placed a mike on the table, and a new adventure began. Over the next three years, after several reunions in the four corners of the world and numerous discussions by e-mail, rereadings, and letters exchanged, this book was born.

“The concern to be useful to our readers has never left us. Even at the height of our discussions, we continued to ask ourselves the question, can what we are saying be of use to others, as well as ourselves? Can it help them find their bearings, encourage them to pose their own inner questions?”— Christophe André

Why inner freedom?

Inner freedom is the natural extension of wisdom. One who attains wisdom enjoys great inner liberty, and one who frees himself of his mental disturbances is on the path to wisdom.

What, exactly, is it about?         

Ever since childhood, we have been prisoners of norms, prejudices, and automatic reflexes that stand in the way of our happiness. What are these invisible barriers? Our fears (fear of failure, fear of others’ perception of us), our dependences (on screens, on alcohol, etc.), our thoughts, our habits that lead us to consistently react in the same manner, the conditioning of a consumer society, one that pushes us to perform.

Drawing an itinerary of liberation               

This book presents a methodic path to leave our inner prisons and become available for service to all. “Here’s the task, » says Alexandre, «to zero in on our neuroses, the nails that paralyse us, so that we no longer burden others with the weight of our own blindness, for freedom always involves others.»

The Buddha, Jesus, Spinoza, Epictetus, and many others clear the highways towards freedom. In every case, it is a question of abandoning our narrow conceptions, liberating ourselves from what-will-people-say, daring to swim in the open sea and taking over the helm of our own existence.”   — Alexandre Jollien


 A methodic book in four parts            


  1. Misconceptions
  2. Acrasia, or weakness of will
  3. Dependence
  4. Fear
  5. Discouragement and despair
  6. Egocentrism


  1. Places that favour liberty
  2. An ecology of ties
  3. The impact of the cultural environment


  1. The horizon of efforts
  2. Difficult efforts, joyous efforts
  3. Training the mind
  4. Meditation
  5. From the transformation of the self to that of the world


  1. Inner pacification
  2. Our profound nature
  3. Confronting death
  4. Ethics
  5. Unconditional benevolence


What differentiates this book from Trois amis en quête de sagesse ?

One finds the same complementarity among these three voices, the same capacity to place themselves at the reader’s own level and offer him advice (there is a “Tool box” at the end of each chapter). A few differences and new additions:

  • Each chapter begins with an anecdote told by one of the three friends.
  • The text is punctuated by six exchanged letters.

“How to work towards inner freedom that will allow us to take on, with serenity, the ups and downs of existence and emancipate us from ignorance and the causes of suffering.”— Matthieu Ricard

The pluses

  • Once more, the reunion of three of today’s finest authors
  • A methodically constructed book in which a monk, a philosopher, and a psychiatrist reveal their personal advice on how to advance towards freedom
  • Warm and personal conversations that give us the feeling of being close to them, listening to them speak


Matthieu Ricard is a Buddhist monk and a photographer. This researcher in molecular genetics was the interpreter for the Dalaï Lama. The book he co-authored with his father, Jean-François Revel (Le Moine et le Philosophe, 1997) introduced him to a broad public. The author of Plaidoyer pour le bonheur and L’Art de la meditation, he also devotes his time to the humanitarian works of the Karuna Schechen association.

Born in 1975, Alexandre Jollien spent seventeen years in a specialised institution for the physically handicapped. Philosopher and writer, he is the author of works whose reading public continues to grow, since the publication of Eloge de la faiblesse (1999, Prix de l’Académie française), Le Métier d’homme (2002), La Construction de soi (2006), and Le Petit Traité de l’abandon (2012).

Christophe André is a psychiatric physician and one of France’s finest specialists in the field of the psychology of emotions. He is the author of several widely read works, including Imparfaits, libres et heureux (Prix Psychologies Magazine 2006), Les Etats d’âme, and Et n’oublie pas d’être heureux. His book Méditer Jour après jour has become established as the number one work of initiation to meditation.