Posted : Tuesday, Oct 1, 2019 at 2:49am
I was Born on a Tuesday
The story of my reading habit
When I was 16 I tried to read for leisure and I didn’t get far in this pursuit. A year later, at age 17, I read 1 book the whole year, one that that I actually enjoyed. I in fact read it a few times and this book was: The Art of War by Sun Tzu.
What I didn’t know at the time was that I would pick up a reading habit that would lead me to reading a book that has really left a lasting impact in my life.
Now to back track a bit; When I was 16 my father had given me his copy of Tuesdays with Morrie and when I tried reading it the first time I saw my interest quickly diminish. The reason was not the content of the book rather I lost interest in the process of reading. I once heard that although many people are literate today, many can only read and write on a basic level. When I look back I was one of these people. I only read when it was necessary.
That is until something happened.
I discovered that there are more to books than fictional content. This may seem obvious but think about it: most of us are exposed to ‘stories’ in our early schooling days. As we go forwards we are further introduced to novels. If I am being honest, I did feel alienated by what we read in school. I get that books give us a look into other people’s lives but I hardly found one that was even close to my own. Furthermore I am one of those people who prefer to see a story than to imagine it; hence I almost started a comic book collection (story for another day). I could always go to the movies, so books did not become appealing to me.
I do not even remember how I discovered this book but I found myself downloading an eBook of The Art of War. The style of in which the book is set is really simple, spaced out between each idea and as such below average reader was able to follow the content. Given how I enjoyed this book I started looking for more content by Chinese Thinkers; basically anyone who had ‘Tzu’ in their name. What I loved about Chinese literature was their presentation of their work, the writers presented the abstract in such a way that you are left with questions, or a better way to put it is: left you with things to think about. I slowly started reading more and decided to finally pick up the book my father had given me.
Although this story wasn’t set in a place I have been. Although it involved people whose reality was nothing like my own. Tuesdays with Morrie presented me with something I love: Questions about Life. This book had an impact on me because it presented me with characters (real people) who met up in order to openly ask and discuss, topics that we so often think we know about yet when we look within we realise how unsure we are. What I further learned exists through a process created by this process was that there is such a thing as Philosophy.
After reading this book, I could then go back and look at the Chinese Philosophers and compare them to what was within this book. It allowed me to be the weird guy within a group of people who asks questions about what is (without having to pick up a blunt).
This book has become a part of my truth, as I have learned about myself through the processes that lead me to reading it and what I would read afterwards.
I know that my own content thus far hasn’t said much about the book itself apart from the fact that I read it but that is not what I want to be a take away from this article. There are already many reviews about it out there. My point is that the process of becoming better doesn’t always lie in the places of your comfort. My comfort lies in television and film. I love these formats but for me to grow and for me to better my writing; I had to do the one thing I found boring at the time and that is read.
I was born on a Tuesday but it was Tuesdays with Morrie that gave me a new life.