I have been fascinated by books my entire life. More so about the ones that document the stories of places, people and their culture. That’s one reason my favorite subject during my school was always ‘Social Studies’. I loved History and Geography but not Civic Sciences. I always hated the governance and political aspects of societies. I liked them only to the extent that there should be some kind of law to punish unruly behaviour and to the extent that there should be some one to take care of all the infrastructure and the money that is paid by it’s people. The governments these days are not good at either of these.
The best thing I like about libraries is how organized they are. Staff meticulously cataloging all arranging the tomes in long, tall shelves. Another thing I love is the smell of print. The first thing I do, as soon as I open the book is to smell it. It kind of excites my senses, I guess and makes me want it more. I think that’s one way I could get myself to read more books or at the least that would keep me going back to the Library. It’s like the smell of dust rising from the ground when the first drops of monsoon hit the dry, parched ground. I used to long for that smell a lot when I was in India.
I call libraries the “Temples of Knowledge”. Religion played a very important role in shaping up the mankind. In fact, I think that has been the biggest force that has shaped the world the way it is today. We all realize how it is still influencing the way we and our future generations live. In Hinduism, temples and priests are the way the knowledge has been passed down from generations to generations. Hence, I call the libraries, ‘Temples of Knowledge’.
The authors are like the priests, waiting to pass on the knowledge to you. Even though there is only one ‘Truth’. Each priest, will influence the truth his own way and present it to you. He sees the truth through his eyes, filters it through his brain. His brain is unique. It has been shaped up by many more priests. The trickiest part is reproducing the truth. This is where the training that your brain has received comes into picture. This is why I think one has to read all kinds of books. Train the brain, to reproduce the truth. In it’s own way of course. The more training the brain has, the better equipped it will be to reproduce the truth.
Anyway, I have been trying to visit my priests for a few weeks now and I should say, I have been fairly successful. I have found a perfect ‘Temple’ to pursue this passion. I live in Cary,NC and fortunately very close to an excellent facility called ‘West Regional Library’, part of Wake County Library System. We started going there to fulfill my daughters never ending requests for ‘Dora – The Explorer’ books. I have started exploring myself now. Hope you all will find and make time to read. Be it a Temple like the one I talked about or the virtual temple that is omnipresent, The Internet.