When I go to your house, first thing I would be looking for is your bookshelf. Yes, for it speaks volume about you.
People hoarding books have favorable human relating than those who don’t have any. Yes, for books teach us a lot of things.
Get a story book and see how people behave in the story. Their goal to reach the top rung of the ladder, say career, business, etc. they could be in constant battle with their inner demons. Yes, either pride, envy, jealousy, or so on could be a bitter truth about themselves. Learning how they face these and overcome is something that can be done also when we feel the same travail. We need to be good, kind and fair and just so as to be called well-adjusted individuals. For, living with other people around, we have to be easy to be with, know our boundaries and willing to learn a thing or two about relating. And, book reading is one sure way to get ourselves the needed skills in dealing with different people around. Vicarious learning is key. When you read book character being the butt of jokes, or maligned or what, you tend to get empathized. You know that it is not a a good thing to do such or receive such treatment. Thanks, to books I have read!
When I made a survey with my students, only few of them have reading materials at home. They don’t have any books aside from textbooks given by the school for them to read for the school year. This is so alarming, considering the importance of book reading to a kid so as to develop his/her comprehension skills, fluency and vocabulary, but more so on his/her appreciation of human dynamics where people have different personalities, beliefs and all, thus having different action-reactions to a given issue, etc.
Young minds must be developed into well-rounded persons later. They must have absorbed wisdom from great literature around and be more sympathetic and with empathy to all, especially those beyond their close contact. Challenges with biases, hatred with some people –though irrational and all, still persist because of lack of the habit of reading books and learning the dynamics of positive social interactions.
Those who are wide and wild readers, if you notice, they are silent and more easy to be with, they could get one’s uniqueness sans bias and prejudice and all. That’s the essence of reading books where we become more understanding, supportive and what-not to people around.
However, there are always exception to the rule: some of us, have this tenacity to be audaciously prejudiced a person. Even, so-called educated ones. Yes, true education is seen on how you deal with people beyond your close contact, the way you treat them is your own brand of social adjustment: treat people well to show your learned behavior gotten from varied readings, experiences and the like.
So the next time I visit you, kindly serve coffee or tea… and a book which you have read countless times! I might get something a wisdom from such and be a better person than the one I used to be. Just kidding!
Larry Icabandi Nabiong
Grade school teacher, published author/article writer, grape nook grower, environment/IP advocate, social entrepreneur wannabe, among other great endeavors.
Currently working on his first novel with working title: When Doors Open… Run! Similar to Hunger Games where players are pitted against each other inside an arena, where different doors are provided, for them to run toward or away… for survival purposes. Behind opening doors are enemies trying to survive the odds just like them. Only the toughest one will emerge the victor when he/she reaches the final door to the applauding spectators!