Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Sensei's Guidance on Reading

Question (by a young adult): Even when I set out to read a book, I get bored in a minute. I always give up halfway through..
What is the secret to learning how to read without getting bored. 
Sensei says, "As for your question, let me say this: why not begin by reading a book on a topic that interests you? 
Go ahead and read something that deals with a topic that you are concerned about. 
Beyond that, make up your mind to plough steadily through works you know you must read, even if you dislike doing so  - text books for example. 
Even if you think the task at hand is difficult, or even if you should find the book hard to understand, never mind, go ahead and finish reading it. 
Whenever you manage somehow to read a whole volume, you'll gain a sense of fulfillment from having completed it. And out of that satisfaction will come the desire to read still another book. 
The point is that you must first of all complete one book on a topic that interests you. Your success in finishing will give you a sense of satisfaction and a taste of the joy of reading. You will not be able to stick to your plan unless you do experience such a sense of fulfillment and joy. 
As long as you keep a distance, printed words are especially difficult to become 'chummy' with. On the other hand, words in print have the characteristic that their 'foreignness' disappears when you get used to dealing with them. Then they become surprisingly good friends. But of course you have to make some effort to develop to that point. I would like you to take it as a challenge to do so and by all means, I hope you will not accept your present attitude as the last word. 

Source: Advice to Young People, written by Dr. Daisaku Ikeda

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