on Books. Again

It is not surprising that as I have grown older I have inherited from the immutable laws of the inevitable accumulation of experience such traits which are very distinct to it: in sum, a great cynicism and a growing reluctance with putting up with annoying people and useless things. What is surprising perhaps is how tender of an age, in the greater scheme of things, has this transformation occurred. I'd have liked to wait till forty at least. But one cannot do much about these things so onward we head.

Books are something I think about a lot because I have gained so much from them. Interesting people are very scarce in this world and interesting people with half a brain are scarcer still. The chances of running into one of them are so low that one cannot depend upon this possibility for one's own mental satisfaction and development. In an atmosphere which generally lacks intellectual stimulation from external agencies, books, good books, are dependable sources for the same. Not only can they be very satisfying in the moment, they can also provide one with the kind of perspective which is essential to maintaining one's own happiness. I think of myself as a reasonably happy and satisfied person. Part of it has to do with the fact that I like my work but there is another, deeper reason to it. With the qualification that there are many who are much better read than I am, I can safely say that I am better read than most people I know. It doesn't make me a better person but it provides me with a strong defense of utmost practical importance in this world. With deep conviction and as a matter of principle, I can and do disregard most things which people say, do, and advise. This deep conviction results from the central tenet in my worldview that most people have absolutely no clue and since they have no clue they need not be taken seriously in matters of importance. This immediate and relentless filtering which happens at a subconscious level prevents me from dealing with the incredible amount of noise that is out there. This noise is philosophically of the following substance: people think that they are important but they are not, they think their issues are unique but that isn't true either, they also think they have a good grasp of the world around them, of their issues, of their career, relationships, convictions, humanity, and religion but this could not be farther from the truth. Good books help one develop this attitude of indifference by laying bare the circular patterns of behavior and of history itself. This attitude might be seen as either good (by rational people) or bad (by emotional ones). I see it as being very healthy and have never regretted it.

2 observations on “on Books. Again
  1. Laura (guess which one?)

    You are such a snob! But a hilarious one. I'm so glad that I have foregone books to read your blog 🙂


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