Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Reading habits (2)

While reading the book Don Bosco in Mangalore (by Philomena D'Souza), I became aware of the great impact literature has on one's life choices.  More than the physical presence of Salesians (which was totally absent till as late as 1997), it was the presence of literature from the Salesian publications that impacted the lives of the Mangalorean Catholic community.  Specially the Salesian Bulletin, Don Bosco's Madonna and the life of Don Bosco.

Though many contest that the age of printed text has ended, it is still very much in vogue. Digital media does indeed have a wider reach but that's not my real point. I actual wonder how many actually read!?  And even if they do read, what is it that we read (the content, type and length)?

When I was a student of philosophy (early on), there was a craze for reading novels.  I practically read all the novels of the library of Yercaud and Nashik.  (Those in Nashik would be read even before they were classified and put on the racks in the library, first by Christopher and then me).  That is besides the usual books and articles we were to read for our studies and term papers.  Some of my companions would grudge even borrowing a book.  Most however would read the newspapers for sure.

Later, during my practical training, there would hardly be any of my students found reading the newspaper... leave alone read books. They would surely borrow books from the library only to read the pages where the word of their topic (for assignment and term papers) appears, nothing more everything less!

Today I know for sure most confreres read nothing more than whatsapp messages - that too sent by non-Salesians.  Most Salesians are too lazy to write - even whatsapp messages!

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