Wednesday, March 5, 2014

40 Pieces of Advice Challenge - Day 7

"A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only once."
-George R. R. Martin

All my life, I've loved getting lost in good books. Whether classic novels, science fiction, historical nonfiction or spiritual, every book I've read has given me new worlds to explore and new insights to mull over.

Lately (and, by lately, I mean since smart phones and tablets started to be my constant companions), I've noticed that I rarely pick up books any more. More often, I'm reading the latest article to make the internet rounds, or catching up on what my favorite bloggers are doing. 

Don't get me wrong, I do enjoy these "fluffy" readings. It's just that, like fluffy foods and fluffy people, I'm left feeling a little unsatisfied. Like there's a hunger that went unnoticed and unfulfilled. And, I do read with and to my children, which we all enjoy immensely. But, it's a bit different from curling up on the corner of the couch and immersing myself in a whole other world.

I've started to look at books like long-neglected friends. The well-loved books that I've lugged through many moves from house to house, the books on library shelves that I've yet to become familiar with, even books that have become famous as movies. They are all calling to me and I've decided that, starting today, I'm going to make more time and room in my life for reading books.

Do you need reasons to read more books? There are plenty! Here's an excellent article that outlines some of the main advantages.

But, in my opinion, this one is the most important. 

Unlike watching TV or a movie, reading a book requires you to construct your own mental images, your own character images, your own interpretation of descriptions and dialogue - a great way to boost your imagination and creativity. And a certain guy who was known for being kind of smart (ok, it was Einstein, and he was a genius) said a very important thing about this very topic:

"Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand."

It's the people who use their imaginations that help the world to advance and civilizations to move forward. Those with healthy and active imaginations don't go through life asking  "Can it be done?", but, rather, "How can it be done?" Everything you see around you, every gadget that has become an indispensable part of your life, all the entertainment you enjoy - they are all a direct result of people who dared to dream, to imagine. 

Do you want to bring more creativity, imagination and, well, life, into your life? Read a book. Read every day. Read when you're feeling stressed. Read because you want to learn new things. Read because you can.

What book will you pick up first?

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