One of my biggest inspirations for this website is an author named Arnold Bennett. Born in 1867, he was best known as a novelist, and though I have thoroughly enjoyed his novels, I first discovered him and got absolutely hooked on reading him when I stumbled upon a self-help work titled How to Live on Twenty-Four Hours a Day. I highly recommend the work as it had an immense impact on me. I finished it in less than a quarter of a day, and if the work speaks to you as much as it did to me, you’ll finish it in even less time.
What particularly appeals to me about Bennett’s work is that it is so different than the clichéd awful self-help books on the market today. These books concern themselves with efficient use of time in order to succeed in your career, (ugh!) maximize your efficiency, get that promotion, and gain wealth. Even the thought of all these matters causes one to shirk in disgust. What banality, what a waste to concern ourselves with such meaningless trifles. Bennett’s book rather instructs us how to live, how to spend our time well. For life, and not work is at the forefront of our happiness. Don’t mistake me, to live, and to live well is hard work, even harder work is to figure out who we are, what we want and what can make us happy. Bennett can be of great assistance in this matter and I shall highlight some of his most remarkable points below. Continue reading
I mean, in a way don’t we read enough as it is anyway? I am on my cell phone the whole day! I get e-mails from work (most of which I try to ignore, despite their painful, assumed implication of importance and necessity of keeping my job), and I get text messages from friends (and though most of the written words are abbreviated, I clearly conceive their meaning, lol). I visit and read blogs whenever I want to know how to do something (like get a high score on Guitar Hero, or get cheats for Candy Crush). I am on Facebook, so I constantly read status updates of my remarkably insightful and whiny friends. So really, do we need to read anymore? And novels? Forget about it. Why do I need to waste my precious time reading about life when I can live it? That living may consist of watching TV and playing video games, but come on, that’s much more fun that reading isn’t it?
In many ways the above argument is not entirely invalid, (and non-readers aren’t necessarily always playing video games and watching TV) we do spend a decent amount of time reading, though that reading may be disjointed and unfocused. Still, reading literature or even a non-fiction is not essential to our survival. In fact less and less people read a complete book every year. (Check out this article at The Atlantic http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2014/01/the-decline-of-the-american-book-lover/283222/) Nonetheless, people can live successful and fruitful lives without reading a book. So, why read? Continue reading