boz @bozwood: is it best to just read what is interesting and let the ideas percolate from there?
Yes. Only read what you find is interesting. Never read the news. 100 years from now, nobody will care what was in the newspaper today. There’s not a single thing in the news that will help you be a better person or will make you more informed about the world. Here’s the news today (every day): Everyone in every election is lying. Every media outlet is biased so you are just reading some random reporter’s opinion so it doesn’t matter. There’s more wars going on then you thought. Oops, here’s a baby that just got bombed in a war you didn’t know we were in. And some houses are being sold and yet foreclosures are through the roof and you student loans can no longer be humanly paid unless we clone ourselves but if you don’t want to pay them you have to be declared “legally hopeless”. And some celebrity had a baby and the father is not sure.
In fact, it turns out you need to use 23andme.com to confirm the genetics of yourself, your parents, and your kids, because apparently illegitimacy rates are much higher than you think (op-ed page).
Ok, that was the news.
Here’s the books I read today. I’m not necessarily recommending them. This is just what I found interesting this morning before I started writing. I got up particularly early so probably read a bit more than usual. I only read a few chapters in each book.
Essays by Neal Stephenson
Wait by FrankPartnoy
The Rare Find by George Anders
Collected Stories of Leonard Michaels
You Are Here by Christopher Potter
I Am That by Nisargadatta Maharaj
And…the ever useful “The Book of General Ignorance” which has more fascinating facts and ideas than I’ve read in any other book (I bought it the other day when I took my kids to the Liberty Science Center. I’m always a sucker for the bookstores in museums. Who says bookstores are dead?).
From this reading I got an idea for a post that I have not yet written but I know the title. I’m either going to call it “The Death of Slavery” or, if I think that might be somehow offensive, I might call it “The Death of Time”. It was a combination of three of the above books that gave me the idea which is, basically, the evolution in thinking about your value that ultimately takes you from poverty to wealth. Or from stress to happiness. You choose. Although it could be both.
So, yes, read every morning. Only read things that interest you. Look hard for things that you find fascinating. Because in your head they will all mix together and create a beautiful alphabet soup. And like you were when you were a little kid, you will look down in the soup and see the letters spell out sentences that you know, deep down, could only be direct messages from god to his special little child…you.