We are often told that we are what we eat. In our world since the printing press it might be more accurate to say we are what we read. How each of us digests what we read is mystery? And what people read is sometimes as puzzling as what they think.
The Statement I mentioned above is no doubt a true story we are mostly very complex beings, what differentiate us from our lower mammals is the ability to think and feel.
we are what we repeatedly do, it is not an act but a habit concluded “Aristotle”. Billions of years ago, now are the days for blogging, online world, the mass information. From social networking to the invention of internet we have revolutionize the world of written word, it is so far the best source of communication, we feed our brains daily by the news channels and newspapers etc. Even God Himself gifted humans with Holy Scriptures such is the importance of a written word.
In the Holy Quran the 1st revelation was to read! As Allah says in the surah Alaaq 1st verse:
Read! In the Name of your Lord, who has created (all that exists),
Has created man from a clot (a piece of thick coagulated blood).
Read! And your Lord is the Most Generous,
Who has taught (the writing) by the pen [the first person to write was Prophet Idrees (Enoch)],
Has taught man that which he knew not.
Importance of reading could be judged by this, that almost every religion in world has saved it’s teaching in the form of sacred scriptures, I usually started reading deeply when I was in college, I come to realize the peace and calm which instills in our souls by reading, it was at that time I came to know the importance of literature in our life’s.
Now I left none and have read dozens of Novels and Short stories, Essays whether Fiction or Non-Fiction I do read and it is the best exercise for the mind, it makes one sharp, improve ways of thinking, broaden our perspective and it’s a kind of a non-verbal communication, we can read some good piece writing from a writer who have lived millions of years ago.
We can feel his sorrows and pains, know about that place and time, can emerged into an imaginary world and may forget our worries, it’s like magic or like traveling vicariously to different places and knowing the people, culture and norms of other societies. The artist is the keen observer of the nature of Man and his surrounding’s that can be portrayed for special time and place as to be captured in words, which remains refreshed lifelong for the readers.
As James Joyce “Ulysses” in the intro he wrote:
“I’ve put so many enigmas and puzzles that it will keep professors busy for centuries arguing over what I meant, and that’s the only way of insuring one’s immortality”
Joyce’s discovering was that the ordinary was extraordinary’.
When I open a book, I feel like I’m in a club, of all the great writers and philosopher’s whose company I enjoy, they came out of the words I pronounce loudly as I’m having a conversation
As Ernest Hemmingway wrote “There is no friends as loyal as a book” so is the reality of the quote, at least as by my experience we are all different, God has created us unique and we prefer our individuality, the time very often comes when we got sick of mere chatters and nonsense gossips, nobody understands us, everybody has some kind of interest in our acquaintance we came to realize it sooner or later and at that very moment we develope a safeguard against such people, which is acceptability instead of honesty
We never reveal ourselves truly, some dirty secrets have to be kept hidden in our lonely hearts, and most writers reveal in their writings. For instance: it also teaches us of self-reliance as ‘Henry David Thoreau’ went into the woods for straight 3 years, and wrote Walden, if you read it you will feel his attempt for the incapability of society to understand other human beings, he further describes pleasures of reading in his book:
“To read well is to read true books in true spirits that is the noble exercise”
Moreover, I can also provide an example of a German writer garter who burst out in his death bed, out of a sheer outcry with tenderness he added:
‘nobody has understood me and I have never understood anyone, nobody understands anyone’
if it sounds a bit wired than don’t worry because the truth remains truth even if you don’t like it. But reading can seriously help us to understand and also to compromise with others to know their values, and emotions to be true to the facts and try to understand others instead of forcing ourselves to be understood, and one can also understands at the same time, the stated need for solitude during harsh circumstances, it is better to live alone than compromising to a false community, Be like the lone wolf away from the scoundrel’s wolf pack.
As Mark twain put in with a great sense of humor that “The person who doesn’t read is no better of than the person who cannot read”.
Hope we understand the vitality of thought and vital role of our divine gift to ponder and to think by reading books, instead of being ignorant, stubborn and lazy like nowadays most people are, also the world has became a global village and we have a lot of distractions around us to name a few like the TV, cellphone, Facebook and work etc. Never allowed us the required time to read, as to illustrate very frankly.
Aldous Huxley (great British writer)
Sadly it is the brave new world of Aldous Huxley which we see around us today as similar to what he shows us in his utopian novel.
Excerpt from chapter 2:
“Some nurses present the babies with books and flowers. As the babies crawl toward the books and the flowers, cooing with pleasure, alarms ring shrilly. Then, the babies suffer a mild electric shock. Afterward, when the nurses offer the flowers and books to the babies, they shrink away and wail with terror”.
It seems to me quite true today, as it was written about in 20th century. The artist realizes this many years ago and warns us how the world will be going in this direction and today’s world is no more different than that of the Aldous brave new world and inevitably only the savages must and can read so beware.
“There are the worst crimes than that of burning books one of them is not reading them”.
Hope it would provide some reawakening or troublesome feelings to the reader if not the inspiration.
Happy reading 🙂