3 Books to Bend Your Mind
One has to adopt a languid manner when reading. A hushed mind than a hurried one is needed to take in all that books have to offer. The insight and the other worldly wisdom that exude from the pages of books have often become an underrated statement. Nonetheless books have always done their best to reach the very few who would take these words by the heart and hand. Now what I have here are three books that cover all of the aforementioned ideals. This following books are no short from extraordinary, that I am guaranteed will blow anyone away.
by Nicholas Gannon
The Doldrums is a children's book. Once in a while dabbling in a children's book feels like a breath of fresh air. But here's what makes The Doldrums perfect for all to read. It highlights complex issues in the most simplest ways. The story entails a boy named Archer Benjamin Helmsley, the 11 year old grandson of a pair of world famous explorers who had been thought to have disappeared on a Antarctic iceberg. Archer grows up in his grandparents home with his overbearing mother and lawyer father. His grandparents home is a relic of their adventurous life. Archer often finds himself talking to the stuffed animals, and roaming around his home chancing upon strange findings and longing for an adventure of his own. He is soon joined by Oliver Glub, his loyal friend and neighbour, and Adelaide Belmont, a French girl with a wooden leg on a journey to discover his grandparents. The story is no short of adventurous whim. I remember that I got through three quarters of this book in one sitting. This book very evidently highlights that it's for the dreamers and the believers. One can't help but feel like you're meant to do so much more when one reads this book. On a side note, I would highly recommend that you have a fresh set of chocolate croissants and coffee while reading this book.
North and South
by Elizabeth Gaskell
Elizabeth Gaskell is a writer with a touch of Austen and an insurmountable streak of genius. This book is about the uniting of two unlikely loves, Margaret Hale and John Thornton. Margaret is the daughter of an ex-minister who had lost his faith and moved to smoky Milton in order to persue his love of teaching while John Thornton is a cotton mill owner with a considerable amount of wealth. The story is set in the industrial revolution and highlights the nuances of the different social classes. Gaskell intelligently and subtly intertwined philosophy in the everyday lives of these people. To think that a woman of the 19th century to be so well verse with the workings of society and the industrial revolution is astonishing. This story brings new light and gives meaning to how we perceive the world around us. Though it is predominantly a romantic literature, Gaskell takes great leaps and bounds by introducing an entirely new idea, almost foreign at that time; equality between master and worker. It is very much a stimulating read and one that forces us to reconsider our ideals of today. With all that has been going on in the world of late, I think a text of this sort is in order of revival.
by Ayn Rand
I like to think that I have saved the best for the last. I use to wonder how people reread books or how some of them regarded certain books as their bible. Hans Ulrich Obrist, curator and avid reader himself has said that he read Carl Seelig's books about his walks with Wasler, twenty to thirty times. I discovered there is a whole religion to this sort of attitude after getting my hands on Rand's The Fountainhead. One third through the book and I knew that this was the essence of what people call as their bible. What seems like normal characters in a book is an intricate and detailed study of mankind itself. The story revolves around Howard Roark, an architect who battles collectivist ideology to thrive and bring an understanding of how the "creator" works. Dominique Fancon, an exquisitely beautiful creature falls madly in love with Roark but ends up marrying his biggest enemy instead. This story is far from just architecture itself. It is about our fading ideals of individualism and demonic values of collectivism. Long after completing this book, I still find myself flicking through pages of heavy marginalia, as these words set my head abuzz . The power in the words used by Rand bring a sort of fury, tamed, passionate fury that shivers one to the very core.
If anything these three books bend your mind to think on a completely new plane. It urges one to dispel common thoughts and forge a new path of unconventional thinking. These are not books jut to be read, rather one has to devour it whole. I am a strong believer that , every word, a sound from the movement of your tongue or the image in your head from when you look at a word, have the ability to ignite a feverish fervour of emotions. I would like to end this by sharing, what I consider to be a very powerful quote from The Fountainhead.
"But the mind is an attribute of the individual. There is no such thing as a collective brain. There is no such thing as a collective thought. A agreement reached by a group of men is only a compromise or an average drawn upon many individual thoughts. It is a secondary consequence. The primary act - the process of reason - must be performed by each man alone. We can divide a meal among many men. We cannot digest it in a collective stomach. No man can use his lungs to breathe for another man. No man can use his brains to think for another. All the functions of body and spirit are private. They cannot be shared or transferred."