More on Reading

Imagine a society that did not have a printing press. Everyone will be dependent on oral communications or very costly and limited hand written/copied books. We are fortunate because of Johannes Gutenberg. But to what extent, are we taking advantage of this inflexion point in mankind’s ability to share and disseminate information and knowledge?

There are several titles that I had the good fortune to read in 2018. One was recommended by a FB friend who I met in the last three months, namely, The Righteous Mind – Why good people are divided by Politics and Religion by Jonathan Haidt. In a nutshell, Jonathan outlines a contemporary framework, the Moral Foundation Theory that articulates how various people perceive, evaluate and decide situations and events, based on interal moral convictions. He further shows through research how liberals and conservatives (on opposite ends of the political spectrum) rely on different sets of moral pillars/standards. A free online self test guides one’s own self discovery.

The next title is White Fragility by Dr. Robin Diangelo, published in 2018. This is a very complex issue in recent times. Why would you want to read this book? It’s fitting to then quote the author herself, why she embarked on her own career, why she wrote this. “Interrupting racism takes courage and intentionality; the interruption is by definition not passive or complacent…. It is a messy, lifelong process, but one that is necessary to align my professed values with my real actions. It is also deeply compelling and transformative.”

The other reading category that I have stepped up is spiritual titles. Others may prefer self improvement books. Both inspire, not just inform or educate. Let your books help you live an inspired life!

My reading style has evolved with age. Previously, I will complete a book before I start on another, i.e. a serial reader. But now, I find that I can start three four books concurrently, and complete at different times. Obviously, I will sometimes come across a book that I will read to finish within two three days. Perhaps because I am so used to multiplexing projects during my work career, that this skill has laterally transferred to my reading brain!

So, I have read 30 books since my last update on this topic in Jan 2018. I do have significant travel time this year, so, I may not be able to sustain the pace for 2019. Regardless, I will complete 100 books way before June 2021.

One final thought provoking question to you, my reader. Clearly you enjoy reading. And clearly you have a good circle of friends. How often do you gift books to friends that will just influence their life trajectory? Isn’t that a beautiful idea to contemplate?

“A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies . . . The man who never reads lives only one.” – George R.R. Martin

Author: Ben & Joon

Residents in the great Pacific North West. Living life as it happens, learning our purpose and trail blazing our own paths. Namaste.

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