Reading is such a common word in the life of people that we rarely give a thought towards it. It is an art which we need to develop in our own unique ways to extract the maximum amount of enjoyment and benefit out of it. Our whole life consists of the activity of reading. Our life-long association with reading starts when our parents or grandparents or whoever reads to us those mesmerizing bedtime stories. And our personal experience starts when we begin learning our alphabets and goes on till the time of our death.
Wikipedia has defined reading thus –
The benefits of reading are more than one. Some of them are –
- The first and foremost benefit of reading is that it helps us to do well in our studies.
- Reading books of different genres help us to improve our knowledge of the world.
- Reading can also be a way of enjoyment. Those who love reading prefer spending their alone time with a book in hand and then they forget all about the world around them.
- When we read books we encounter many different and new words which help us to improve our vocabulary and broaden our word stock.
- A well-read person is always able to leave behind a good impression wherever they go because the knowledge that they gain from reading different types of books, articles, essays, newspapers etc makes them capable of having a word on any topic that may come up during a conversation.
- We can travel the world while sitting within the four walls of a room by reading different types of books etc.
- Avid readers always have a better imagination than those who avoid reading.
- Reading plays a vital role in the all-round development of a person and also in our personality development.
- Reading makes a person patient and betters their sense of judgment.
- Reading helps us to expand our knowledge to areas which are otherwise not part of our curriculum.
- Reading makes a person more sensitive, sensible, and appreciative.
- It helps us to develop ourselves intellectually and spiritually too.
- Reading helps us to have a better understanding of the society and the world we live in.
The points I mentioned are only a few of the many benefits of reading. But the sad thing is that as we are progressing technically, the popularly of reading have gradually decreased. We are so busy with our gadgets that we have sidelined the importance of reading.
Andy Miller in his article ” We are losing the art of reading” have thus spoken about the benefits of reading – ” The traditional pleasures of reading are more complex than just enjoyment. They involve patience, solitude, contemplation. And therefore the books that are most at risk from our attention and integrity deficits are those that require a bit of effort.” In this article, he talks about the decrease in the popularity of reading and some of its reasons.
Our technology has gifted us with newer ways of reading. We now don’t need to carry a book all the time if we are lovers of reading. Our cell phones, laptops, I-pads etc are enough. E-reading is a newly developing way of reading. It is more cost-effective and hastes free than reading an actual book, but still, reading was more popular in the yesterdays even when the availability of reading materials was less.
Earlier people used to pass their free time with a book in hand but now that time is taken up by video games, social media etc. In the busy and ever speeding life of the modern world, people hardly get any free time to read.
The need of the hour is that those of us who still enjoy reading and understand it’s important to make others aware of the benefits of reading too. We need to celebrate reading just like we celebrate the various minuscule things and events of our life. And doing so will be so much better both intellectually, spiritually and mentally. It will help us expand our horizons and travel into the unknown with the knowledge that we gain from reading as our support, weapon and backing.