Saturday, January 5, 2008

Why We Read

I was reading my Blogs just now and came across this article, The Reading Cure, that talks about literature as therapy. Bibliotherapy if you will. It says in its conclusion

literature's power to heal and console outweighs its power to do damage. Hector, in Alan Bennett's The History Boys, puts it beautifully when he describes how, in the presence of great literature, it's as if a hand has reached out and taken our own.
My great aunt was a lifelong Christian Scientist. She read the book "Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures" by Mary Baker Eddy over and over. She also read the Christian Science Hymnal. Many times she expressed the idea to me that something she read was healing. This article seems to validate the idea that reading is something that can help people be healthier.

My sister was bemoaning the fact that she used to read a book a day and hasn't been able to since her accident. I complain that I don't have time to read all the books I want to read. For us reading is a part of the fabric of our lives. I had never thought of it as vital a part of our lives as this article speaks of it as being. I do know that when I read some things there is almost an electric shock that runs through me in appreciation of what I had just read. Sometimes I jot it down and save the idea and go back to it again and again.

I encourage you to click on the above link and read the article. It never mentions Christian Science but for me there may be a connection between reading and healing. I know I would rather read a book than take a pill any day.

The current signature on my e-mails has a quote:

I would rather be poor in a cottage full of books than a king without the desire to read.
–Thomas B. Macaulay (1800 - 1859), historian

Sounds like a pretty healthy statement to me. Hugs on a foggy January morning. j

Thanks to 3quarksdaily for leading me to this article.

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