Books: Simply Words?

A book, though on the outside a mere collection of pages, opens its readers’ minds to all that life can offer. And whether it is a first edition gold plated leather bound volume, or a tattered second hand copy, the joys that reading the words on the page can bring are the same no matter the outer shell. Picking up a book and looking into its contents can help one escape the stresses and struggles that life can bring, allowing an individual to steal away into his or her own world. A book; a collection of words and phrases all coming together in order to change someone’s life.

Having remained constant throughout the ages, it is books that have changed the course of history not history changing the books. As the acclaimed reader Harold Bloom said, How they read, well or badly, and what they read, cannot depend wholly upon themselves, but why they read must be for and in their own interest. There may be times in which the material one is made to read doesn’t interest or seem to affect them, but the same effort should be made to read the text because the reason one reads is for them and not anyone else. A reader should absorb the ideas and not only the words in front of them; this is why one reads. It is to allow the concepts to influence and transform previous notions about the world. And if one chooses not to read and permit the notions to enter their thinking, they will have a closed off opinion of the world and nothing can be done to open their minds to the wonders a book can open for them.

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Life can be a sea of emotions, difficult to navigate through, but a book can take away any pain or sadness by whisking away the reader into another world. In which they are the main characters and the story evolves and changes around them. They are part of the story and the author is simply the navigator showing them which way to look. The book will help everyone understand themselves better, and as Bloom wrote in his own Why We Read piece, We read for varied reasons: that we cannot understand know enough people profoundly enough; that we need to know ourselves; that we require knowledge, not just of self and others, but of way things are. He states that reading isn’t just to gain knowledge of a certain topic or tale but that it becomes the roots on how we know others and ourselves.

Reading helps people to discover not only themselves and their own thoughts, but it helps them understand and eventually empathize with others. In addition evaluation of a text aids in the understanding of why things are the way they are. Why do people do bad things? Why do bad things happen to good people? Questions about the most basic themes in life are usually the hardest to explain. Books assist immensely in giving the answers to these questions. Reading puts one into another’s mind and when they do certain things the reader can directly see what their thoughts and plans are. The reader can gain an understanding of what goes through others’ minds helping them discover answers by applying the ideas in a book to their various questions.

Picking up a book and absorbing its messages may seem like a tiresome unpleasant task. But once one realizes why they should read and understand all the benefits reading can bring, it is of utmost importance that a book soon finds its way to their hands. Reading can change lives all around the globe. The messages hidden in a book can stop someone from doing a terrible thing or help them get through painful moments in life. The history of the world has been greatly influenced by books and stories; they transport ideas to people that are able to change the world in accordance to what they have read.

Books are the vessels that carry change and if one reads them they will be a part of that change and shaping the world. Reading, a simple act that can bring so much good to anyone affected by it, there is no excuse good enough to permit not picking up a text and gaining new knowledge. Even if only for a few minutes, reading can transform the way someone lives and thinks. Books have such a tremendous influence on society and the world, that not reading would be disadvantageous to anyone. The way one reads doesn’t matter as long as they decide to open their minds and hearts to the messages and ideas a piece of writing can offer.