Thursday, 16 June 2011

On reading..

I used to have a habit of writing down quotes and little phrases that capture my attention in a little book. I haven't touched that book in a while (I've turned digital), but those little scribbles didn't age as I have. Timeless. Such is wisdom and art.

There are 3 quotes I'd like to share. I wrote them on the first page of my little book as a preface- a reminder to myself against ignorance and against closed-loop thinking:

"The way of a fool seems right to him, but a wise man listens to advice." -Proverbs 12:15

"A little learning is a dangerous thing; drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring: there shallow draughts intoxicate the brain, and drinking largely sobers us again." -Alexander Pope

"It is far from my intention to depreciate the value or deny the usefulness of books, without exception: a few well-chosen treatises, carefully perused and thoroughly digested, will deserve and reward our pains; but a multiplicity of reading is seldom attended with a good effect.

Besides the confusion it often brings upon the judgment and memory, it occasions a vast expense of time, indisposes for close thinking, and keeps us poor, in the midst of seeming plenty, by reducing us to live upon a foreign supply, instead of labouring to improve and increase the stock of our own reflections." -John Newton


The third one is especially meaningful for me. I have a (horrible) tendency to read too much of other's people's thoughts on God at the expense of God's word. I don't discount the usefulness of other people's meditations but it's quite worrying that my concept of God has been hinging quite heavily on the authors that I read and less on His word. Dangerous stuff, and I'm sure I'm not the only one. Lets do something about that shall we?

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