Being a reader, I have faced this question at different junctures of my life. Does reading help in long run? Why shall I read books if I am going to forget them a few weeks later? What is the purpose of spending time turning the pages of books when eventually, you won’t remember the most of it. So, yesterday, I thought of framing an answer to the question: Why shall I read books?
Whenever you read, you have a purpose. But the purpose is not the same all the time. At times, you read to satisfy the curiosity of mind. At times, you read for the pleasure. And at times, you read for learning.
In fact, the same book can be read with different emotions, different perspectives and different conclusions.
For an example, today, I don’t remember the exact story line of The Kite Runner. But I remember the pleasure of a friendship, the emotional journey of Amir, his changing feelings for Hassan and the mixture of pain and love of those six words: For you, a thousand times over. In fact, after reading it, I would have used the same words to express my emotions too.
When you read a book, you are letting your shields down and helping your mind go on to the journey of the unknown. The journey might not be yours, but you are going through it feeling like your own. You are able to connect to the emotional self of yours. You are opening up to new horizons for yourself. With every word written on the paper, you are experiencing the fear, the pain, the love, the excitement, the thrill, the passion and the satisfaction.
Our mind is like a plain white sponge. You take a tub of blue- colored water and drop this sponge in it. Now, after some time, take it out. When you will press that sponge, the water will flow down from it. But, will the sponge be white? No. It would have taken the blue color of that water on it. Next time, when you drop it in a tub of red-colored water, it will again change its color. The idea is that even though majority of the content (water) will disappear, the impact it left on your mind will not.
That “Always” word will never be the same for a Harry Potter fan. The Nike mountain will stay forever in the minds of the fans of “Shoe Dog”. Reading Google, HP, Zappos, Facebook and Walmart’s stories, the companies will mean a lot more to us than what it means to the ones who haven’t been through these journey. The lessons taught by “Rich Dad Poor Dad” will always stay with me. I have solved the same number of mysteries as Hercule Poirot did in those Agatha Christie’s books. (A confession: In 9 out of 10 times, I was wrong.)
I cannot remember the books I’ve read any more than the meals I have eaten; even so, they have made me.Ralph Waldo Emerson
We might not remember everything that we read in books but that’s not what its purpose is. We don’t have to memorize it from end to end. When you complete reading a page of the book, you are not the same person as you were a page ago. You are changing. You are evolving to the infinite possibilities of the world and you are opening the doors of your mind to know about it all.
Every book can leave a lasting impression on you. See the picture below.
The more you read, the more changes you bring in the walls covering your mind. With enough books, I am sure- the walls will break and you will be enlightened with the beauty of the Universe.
The books allow us to connect with the greatest minds of the world that ever lived. Reading helps you to live the thrilling lives that aren’t yours. Your mind, once expanded, will never go its same place.
So, get a coffee for yourself. Put those clothes lying on that chair on the bed. Sit on that chair. Pick up that unfinished book. Open it and dive into the journey of infinity and beyond.
Till next time, ciao!
-Arjuna@War (Parth Shah)
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