The Importance of Reading: Why Read?

“The world of books is the most remarkable creation of man; nothing else that he builds ever lasts. Monuments fall; nations perish; civilizations grow old and die out. After an era of darkness, new races build others; but in the world of books are volumes that live on still as young and fresh as the day they were written, still telling men’s hearts of the hearts of men centuries dead” – (Clarence Day)


Am I speaking your mind? Perhaps you have heard different speakers and read different writers speaking about reading. Interestingly, what you still can’t make out is ‘why read?’ If you are still seeking an answer, this post will give you convincing answers; if you are already an avid or a voracious reader like Adam Nyang or ThaScribbler Bah, then this post is just another energizer for you. You will be inspired and motivated to become more- and that’s what is here for!

Reading is finding out the why, the how, the when, the where, and the who of events, places and things. Reading allows us to travel through and into time: past, present and future. If information keeps the world going, reading keeps the mind going! William Ellery Channing once said (and I cherish his wisdom), “It is chiefly through books that we enjoy intercourse with superior minds. In these books, great men talk to us, give us their most precious thoughts, pour their souls into ours. God be thanked for books. They are the voices of the distant and the dead, and makes us heirs of the spiritual life of past ages. Books are true levelers. They give to all who will faithfully use them, the society, the spiritual presence, of the best and greatest of our race.”.

Reading brings about mental excellence. “The renown that riches or beauty confer is fleeting and frail; mental excellence is a splendid and lasting possession” (Sallust, 86 – 34 B. C.). The human brain is man’s greatest possession and contenting it with knowledge and wisdom should be man’s most prioritized priority. Reading helps us content our brain with potentials and meaningful meanings.I am fond of saying that ‘the world we all share is one but we all have our individual worlds: if one’s life is meaningless, is simply because one didn’t define it.’ Today, I am convinced and would like to add to that quotation that reading … helps us define our lives!

Reading also helps us grow into fine writers. What is there in the world that man does that is not as a result of imitation or unconciously doing what has already been done? Actually, writing is just retelling what has already been said. The only difference lies in how you say what has already been said. It is only through reading that you can learn of a style or invent a new style to be followed. It is through reading that you can turn your telescope (your pen) and see stories from a unique angle (or perspective). And that helps you stand out!

Reading makes you a better leader. A good reader is a good leader! A leader to others or to your own self because it helps you to  understand the world within and around you.  It allows you to see tomorrow, today: to be better prepared, well informed, more insightful, and better inclined to achieve goals on time.

To conclude, reading helps educate, challenge, and nourish one’s greatest possesion: one’s brain. The more you read the better reader you become; and the more you know. The more you know, the easier it will be for you to become a plus to your society, to your country, and to the world.(“To be of use in the world is the only way to happiness.”- Hans Christian Andersen). If fraction means part of a whole, then you are a fraction of this world – and reading makes you a better and unique fraction!

Have you found the answer to ‘why read?’


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