Thursday, May 31, 2012

Why Read? Why learn how to read better?

Why Read?

by Kevin Woolsey
Editor of The 5 Best of Everything

The question is a good one. Why should a boy or girl, man or woman, go through the difficult and time consuming training of learning how to read? The answer is also a good one. A person who can decipher hundreds and even thousands of words in their own language or another language is able to connect with the smartest minds and the best thoughts across time and space. I know this sounds to good to be true, but it is the absolute truth. How would you like to sit down with a King David or President Franklin Roosevelt and chat with them. How would you like to have a cup of tea with Copernicus, Plato or Da Vinci and talk about the great problems facing mankind. You can listen to them talking and sharing their best ideas in books. That is why reading and books should be valued above so many other things.

Television is mostly to entertain and get our mind off of our problems. It is designed to divert attention much like a circus or a theater performance. Television is not reality in its every day form. It is suped-up reality. There is nothing wrong with it except when a person measures their life against this pretend and invented reality and partially believes that it is the standard for happy living. The inventions of others minds are not the standard for living, they are only experiments of the imagination.

What about books, aren't they experiments, too? There are two kinds of books, fiction (made-up) and nonfiction (not made up). Television has this same distinctions but because it has to appeal to the eye, it has to fabricate what truth might look like. Books only have to appeal to the imagination. If the imagination of a person has to be put to use then it will get stronger in function. Television does not have to engage imagination in the mind because it displays pictures for the mind, therefore the mind does not have the obligation of creating its own pictures.

When a human mind looses its capacity to form its own pictures, its own visions, it runs a terrible risk of being lead by the nose of other's visions. Unfortunately, other's visions do not always serve to the good of all, but much to the benefit of one, or a small groups interest.

Why read? Because by it your vision grows. With the capacity to create vision, you have the power to change the future. Without the power to imagine, you loose the ability to control your future. This is more scary than you can probably imagine. No need to imagine that one, read about the people who live, right now, in Cuba under Fidel Castro. Read about those who lived under the heavy hand of Adolph Hitler, a man who ruined millions of lives and brought torture and pain to other millions. Read to think and imagine for yourself. Nothing is darker than having others do your thinking, planning and living for you.

by Kevin Woolsey
Editor of The 5 Best of Everything

Why learn how to read? Why bother reading? Why read?

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