I am still in the process of perfecting the habit and skill of perusing materials through the monitor of my laptop.
Since the ascendancy of the internet age and the proliferation of available content online, I have slowly, ever so slowly, got accustomed to devouring bits and pieces of information while connected to the net.
So far, I’ve made great strides. I’ve devoted countless hours and consumed nuggets of wisdom, of information, of news, and such reading blogs of all sorts and articles from the mundane and trivial to the deeply philosophic on the internet.
But all these information, which I can, oh so easily acquire cheaply and easily, can never replace my love and passion for books.
I have a rather modest collection, with a good 20 or so books still unfinished (now this is a bad, bad habit to have and one that I intend to eradicate). I always make it a point that I have books inside the car, inside my laptop bag, inside the bathroom (yes, making full use of my “downtime”), and beside the bed. This way, I get to pick up a book and continue reading.
One can never argue against the fact that great men and accomplished individuals have behind them a stack of, a library of books even. Their minds have been taken to places they have never been, have been provoked to debate a thought or idea by someone as fictional as the White Wizard in Middle Earth, have been immersed in a culture, heretofore, unknown, have been prodded to place himself in another man’s shoes and take an altogether alien view of the world.
One acquires bits and pieces that fuse together over time and spill over to eventual expression and execution, creating form from substance which the bound pages supply. One obtains a set of morals or guide posts that govern day-to-day decisions as well as strategic maneuvers for the foreseeable and unforeseeable future. Books are the first step to accomplishments, setting into play the all-important translation of abstraction to application.
A book read, they say, is a trophy. A collection of books, a worthwhile pastime. And to most, amassing a collection that can rival a small library or even a big public one is a show of one’s erudtion and a proven testament to the great book lover’s legacy to the world.