If one has to choose between reading the new books and reading the old, one must choose the old: not because they are necessarily better but because they contain precisely those truths of which our own age is neglectful. – C.S. Lewis
Reading is one of the most important things someone who wants to become an author can do. I would never have wanted to write if I had not first learned to love books and stories.
There are so many books in the world that it can be hard to figure out to read, and there are more books coming out quite often. It can be easy to get swamped down in the shear amount of books to choose from.
For many of us it would not be difficult to not read any old books except in school.
However, that would be a mistake.
Reading older books is important. It gives us a glance into another age. It teaches us things that new books ignore.
Of course, you should read new books as well as old ones, but in many ways it is easier to read the newer ones. That is why I would like to share some of my reasons for reading old books, classics. I’m calling them old books because classics are something that many people feel that they have to read whether they want to or not, but if I am talking about old books they don’t feel as necessary to read even though they are.
You Look at Things Differently
Reading books can help you to look at things differently. Older books in particular help to do this. They are from a different age and that allows us to see how things are the same and how things have changed.
They Have Stood the Test of Time
In a hundred years many of the books that have just came out for us will be forgotten, but the ones that were good and said something important will be remembered. The old books that we have in these days are the ones that were amazing and are still relevant today. There were so many books that were written in the past that we don’t remember today, it will be the same in the future, only the best of what is written will be remembered.
You Understand the References
A lot of more recent books will have references to older books, and it can be so fun to find these in the new books that you read. I have found quite a few in the Harry Potter books. Finding references to older books is a lot of fun for me, almost like a treasure hunt.
Also people do reference older books fairly often, and it is nice to know what they are talking about so that you don’t have to stare at them blankly.
Makes People More Empathetic
According to studies people who read more are likely to be more empathetic. Reading helps us to understand why people behave the way that they do. The characters in books help us to understand humans and why they act the way that they do. It can also help us to know how to behave in situations in our own lives.
They Are Still Relevant
If we remember these old books today it is because there is a reason. They show us important things. They teach us. And often if you will give an old book a chance you may be surprised at how much you enjoyed it, I know that I have found that time and time again.
It is important to read. Reading teaches us about life. We learn so much from books, both old and new.
I hope this has convinced you of the importance of reading old books as well as new. There are so many amazing old books, and there are so many more of them than there are of newer books, we need to start reading the old books as well as the new as soon as possible and even then there will be so many that we do not get a chance to read.
C.S. Lewis says, ‘It is a good rule, after reading a new book, never to allow yourself another new one till you have read an old one in between.’ This is something that I do try to do, although it does not always succeed.
Books are an important part of our lives and they teach us so much. The stories that have been written down and read for generations are not something that should be forgotten in this generation.