Do you remember the last book you read? The one whose characters became your friends (or your enemies!) and made you think about a way of living other than your own? I still remember a series I read in Jr. High. I remember where they were located on the library shelves, and how I couldn’t wait to finish one to read the next.
We are in our mini-series of looking at four of what I call – “foundational to healthy living things” that typically fall off our schedules. The reason we drop them? “We perceive their price as high, and “they place no active demands on our time,” according to authors Judith Kolberg and Kathleen Nadeau.
Last week we talked about socializing (read here) I’m sure from this picture you can guess what #2 is….
If you guessed reading, you are right. As an adult, probably only if we are in school or working on a professional deadline does a book “actively demand” our time. So it’s easy to let reading slip on by.
Relate to any of these?
• I don’t have time
• I can’t take the time
• I fall asleep when I try
• I don’t like to
• I’m not a good / fast reader
• There is always something else I should be doing
I can relate to all of these!
On occasion we have to look outside of ourselves and be reminded by another why something that “we don’t like to do / don’t have time to do,” etc., is valuable.
Why read? A great answer is found in the classic “How to Read a Book,” by Mortimer Adler.
A good book does reward you for trying to read it. The best books reward you most of all. The reward, of course, is of two kinds. First, there is the improvement in your reading skill that occurs when you successfully tackle a good, difficult work. Second – and this in the long run is more important – a good book can teach you about the world and about yourself. You learn more than how to read better; you also learn more about life. You become wiser. Not just more knowledgeable – books that provide nothing but information can produce that result. But wiser, in the sense that you are more deeply aware of the great and enduring truths of human life.
Could we need a better reason?
What about you? Any book you want to recommend for the next great read? Please share it with us below. And don’t forget to check your local library for some inspiration – they are bound to have a summer reading list for grown-ups. Next week I’ll feature a guest post from a reading specialist, Deb Rankin, aka “The Book Talk Lady.”