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Commit Yourself to Lifelong Learning Part 4
By Chuck Gallozzi
Reprinted by permission.
This is the fourth and final installment in this series.
How to Read Books
1. My favorite
piece of advice on how to read books was given by Francis Bacon:
“Read not to contradict and confute; nor to believe and take for granted; nor
to find talk and discourse; but to weigh and consider.”
nothing that you do not care to remember, and remember nothing you do not mean
to use.” (John Stuart Blackie)
3. “It is well
to read everything of something, and something of everything.” (Henry P.
4. Apply what
you learn. Don’t expect self-help books to work if you don’t.
5. Plan your
reading and read with a purpose.
Additional Words of Advice about Reading
neglect reading books that were written before you were born or earlier. All
books, regardless of their age, are new when read for the first time.
2. “A good
book, in the language of the book-sellers, is a salable one; in that of the
curious, a scarce one; in that of men of sense, a useful and instructive one.”
3. “Books, like
friends, should be few and well chosen. Like friends, too, we should return to
them again and again for, like true friends, they will never fail us - never
cease to instruct - never cloy.” (Charles Caleb Colton) As Charles Caleb Colton
suggests, we should reread good books several times during our lifetime, An
important reason for doing so is that we are no longer the same person when we
reread it, so each new reading will provide fresh insights.
4. Build a
personal library of your favorite books so you will be able to follow the
advice of (William) Robertson Davies, “A truly great book should be read in
youth, again in maturity and once more in old age, as a fine building should be
seen by morning light, at noon and by moonlight.”
5. With the
vast number of books available, choose what you read carefully. Why spend time
poring over useless information when you could use the same time to grow in
knowledge, understanding, and wisdom?
books are treasures, but one that is shut is nothing but a doorstop.
7. If we fail
to read good books, how are we any better than an illiterate person?
one reads a book on procrastination in order to procrastinate! Don’t use
reading as an excuse to avoid responsibilities.
9. “It is
better to read a little and ponder a lot than to read a lot and ponder a
little.” (Denis Parsons Burkitt)
10. Read one
book at a time. To learn efficiently, it is better to focus on one subject at a
time. If we try to read several books at once, we divide our attention,
absorbing less material from each book.
11. “Always read
something that will make you look good if you die in the middle of it.” (P. J.
O’Rourke) I couldn’t resist including this humorous quote, which applies to
Elvis Presley. You see, despite his ignoble death (a drug overdose in his
bathroom), it became noble because of what he was reading at the time of his
death, which was the spiritual classic, The Impersonal Life, by Joseph S. Benner.
Just as we
can judge people by the company they keep, we can learn more about them by the
books they read. And whenever you meet bright people and wish to become more
like them, find out what books they read.
agree with Marcus Tullius Cicero that “A room without books is like a body
without a soul.” To enjoy the benefits of reading at little cost, get a library
card. And if you already have one, use it more often.
Also, may we
all enjoy TV as much as Groucho Marx who said, “I find television very
educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and
read a book.”
It Stick: The Science of Successful Learning by Peter C.
Brown,? Henry L. Roediger III,? and Mark A. McDaniel
Art of Learning: An Inner Journey to Optimal Performance by Josh
Learning: How to Learn Any Skill or Subject, Double Your Reading Speed and
Develop Laser Sharpe Memory- Instantly by James Horton
to Improve the Quality of Your Life?: A
Comprehensive Approach and Guide to Well-Being By Dr.
Joseph Adrien Emmanuel DEMES M.D. M.P.H. Ph.D.
New Science of Learning: How to Learn in Harmony with Your
By Terry Doyle and Todd Zakrajsek
Learning: Linking Theory and Practice by Sharan B.
Merriam and Laura L. Bierema
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