- Ref:: fs
- Title:: Arthur Schopenhauer: On Reading and Books
- Author:: Farnam Street
- Year of publication:: 2016
- Category:: Blog
Notes from reading
Reading is the best way to get smarter
reading has always been
Mastering the best of what other people have already figured out
In The Prince, Machiavelli offered the following advice: “A wise man ought always to follow the paths beaten by great men, and to imitate those who have been supreme, so that if his ability does not equal theirs, at least it will savour of it.”
When we read, another person thinks for us: we merely repeat his mental process
It’s important to take time to think about what we’re reading and not merely assume the thoughts of the author. We need to digest, synthesize, and organize the thoughts of others if we are to understand. This is the grunt work of thinking. It’s how we acquire wisdom.
Reading consumes time. And if we equate time with money, it should not be wasted on bad books.
Knowing what to read is important but so is its inversion— knowing what not to read.
It would be a good thing to buy books if one could also buy the time to read them; but one usually confuses the purchase of books with the acquisition of their contents.