The written word is a powerful thing. As I’ve said before, writing is very important to me. But there are always two sides to the coin aren’t there? My hope is that people will read what I write and gain something from it. With that in mind, can I really call myself a writer if I don’t pay even the simplest respects to the peers of my craft? In other words, if I don’t read the work of others, how can I possibly expect people to attend to my own words?
Reading is one of the best ways of transmitting information and ideas that there is. You don’t need a computer, the internet, a license, or permission to read. Hell you don’t even need eyes! It is also one of the most powerful ways to educate yourself and gain knowledge about the world around you. Why do you think colleges still use textbooks? Even most online classes still require a textbook.
Sadly, reading is on the decline. It is nowhere near extinct by any means, but many people today (especially youth) don’t even like to read! I’ve heard more than a couple of my friends say that they hate the activity. That baffles me. These are people without learning disorders or concentration issues. They simply don’t like the practice of sitting and reading. They deny themselves access to worlds of knowledge, entertainment, and enlightenment.
Now I will admit, sometimes the idea of reading doesn’t appeal to me either. It is so much easier to sit at the computer and watch a something on Netflix or play a video game than it is to sit and focus your attention and brainpower on a book. And even if I do read, it is often times a novel (not that there is anything wrong with novels) or something light and not very informative.
The best kind of books are those that uplift you and inform you. Books worth reading open your mind to the world and how it works. Books that explore the human condition and seek to answer the larger questions in life. Those are the kinds of books that I aspire to immerse myself in.
So here is my resolution:
I am going to be in the process of reading an informative, enlightening, or educational book all the time. I will peruse it with discernment and interest, and when I finish I’ll pick a new one.
Such a resolution is certainly a difficult one. I don’t know how many books I will finish in a years time, which is why I didn’t set myself a number. I would rather read slowly and understand 3 good books than rush through 8 and not get anything out of them.
You don’t have to be an intellectual to begin reading worthwhile books. You don’t have to start with something ancient or intimidating. Just read what interests you and enjoy yourself! In this case, the journey of reading is much more important than the destination of finishing the book.
I invite anyone who wants to join me to comment below with what book you plan on getting into first! I plan to post my reading list in a few days!
BTW: The book I’m reading right now is called Wizard: The Life and Times of Nikola Tesla : Biography of a Genius.