Reading is very important. Wisdom and knowledge comes from life experience while information gathering comes from reading. People who are "well read" are generally more interesting to talk to and have a much broader range of depth than those who never read hardly anything. There has been a loss of reading skills in recent decades and a decline in classical literature. Many people in modernity won't even read this essay, or a magazine article, or a fluffy fun book, or a book of fiction, or a book of non-fiction, let alone a book of knowledge such as an ancient philosophical text or grimoire. Thus our insane clown president, Trumplestiltskin is the 45th Commander In Chief of the United States of America and the comedy Idiocracy has become a documentary. Which is understandable since we're so programmed to move a mile a minute and not ever slow down. Reading takes time and requires one to take one’s time and slow down. In order to be a good writer, you must read a ton more than you write. It’s baffling how unwell read many "filmmakers" are and a huge part of being a filmmaker instead of just a person with a camera is writing compelling fleshed out characters of depth. Hence, so much of the problems with indie filmmaking is a lack of good writing even though we’ve all heard the quote the three things needed to make a good film are a good script, a good script, and a good script.
Technology has made it so we get information a mile a minute. Sadly, most of it's crap because people seem to want to play app based games on their conflict mineral made, slave labor constructed, ovarian cancer generating, NSA spying enabled cell phones rather than read something juicy and yummy for their mind in analogue on physical and tangible paper. Some of the best, if not the very best, information one can consume on a page or screen comes from words and symbols of knowledge. Usually ancient books or else books which retell or reboot those old themes.
For example, "The Art of War" is not a easy book to read but instead is something that requires one to spend time with it over and over again over long periods. Much like university study, it can take a long time to sit down with The Art of War and really get information out of it. And that requires not only that slowing down, but also a focused mental concentration. So there’s no coincidence in social networking inspiring heavy amount of mental discursiveness, in which the youth of a nation have been bread to click onto the next thing, and the next thing, and the next thing. Which is horrible for for concentration, focus, as well as the esoteric ability to retain internal light.
As someone who is mildly dyslexic, reading in the past has been a struggle for this writer. The McDonalds for the mind B+ level accurate Wikipedia definition of dyslexia is "difficulty in learning to read or interpret words". Which sure as shit was true here in this brain’s real estate. When going through my 12 years of the mind control conform boot camp of public school, I would have so much problem not remembering what I had just gone over a paragraph before. This was mainly popped up when reading fiction whereas I would often be lost in place and time within the story, making hard to always know when and where I was in the story. However, it wasn't so much the information in the text itself but more the process of extracting the details of that info off the page and into memory. It felt analogous to a gears lodged in the mental cogs. However, being read that very same text out loud was a different story. Hence books on tape saved me in the 80's and 90's. But there was only a limited smaller percentage of content which has been read and recorded at that time/space vector.
Reading involves all your time. Listening does not. When you listen you are in your own world and can often times DO other things. I always have earbuds in my ears whenever I'm by myself in my spare time. Out and about getting chores done, exercising, doing various hobbies, etc... Either at home or on the move, if I'm alone and don’t have headphones in my ear holes, it feels as though something is missing. Leaving the house without the trifecta of the wallet, keys, and phone with earbuds causes sensations of being partially nude. If you are similar and are constantly plugged in on your own time, with headphones constantly attached, air tube headphones are recommended to research for their health benefits. A large percentage of the electromagnetic frequency radiation from your phone travels up the headphone wire into the speakers. These earbud headphones keep the small amount of micro radiation emitting from your battery powered device away from your head, which is important because these devices may not have our health as their primary concern.
Time is so valuable and life is short. When around others who have ears to hear, being respectful by not staring down at your phone and instead giving them your focus to engage with interest and eye contact is very important. Wisdom comes for places you may never suspect, and face to face wisdom is the most yummy of all. Our spare time is best spent taking in healthy and good tasting information directly from a source of experience. Life is too short to spend all your time listening to someone else's crap off a a pre-approved menu which they would be all too happy to spoon feed to you over some ghastly live broadcast full of deplorable corporate commercials. I'm allowed to say that being someone who has occasionally directed commercials and has worked on and off in the commercial industry.
Audiobooks and podcasts are much more ubiquitous these days. However, many old texts that are packed with excellence have not been transcribed to audio book. The modern version of books on tape is the spoken word version of text on the page. Either read by a human or translated digitally into an audio file, just like a book on tape. This is a technique called text to speech which is a secret weapon of excellence. Older versions of the Amazon Kindle allowed most if not all books you purchased on Kindle to also be transcribed as an audio book. An outstanding feature they very sneakily and quietly removed in later versions because of conflicts with publishing companies over copyright of audio books vs traditional books.
The best solution I have found to mimic this is text to speech. There are pieces of software which allow you to copy text and have it read out to you, often but not always by a robotic Stephen Hawking like voice. For numerous years I would highlight text and copy it into a reader and push play. The day this was discovered truly was life-transformative as it allowed for my world to open up to new heights which I always struggled to achieve in the past. So much to the point that I know my grade point average in school would have been better if the technology was around in my high school and university years. So even though the Trivium education system has been intentionally removed from modern schooling because schooling is not education and they don’t want free thinking autodynamics that are fiercely individualistic but instead corporate robots which are great at groupthink, it’s still a beautiful time to educate yourself through reading with greater ease due to the ability to have this technology at your fingertips.
These days I will believe it or not give credit to Apple and mention that more recent versions of the Mac OS operating system have an incredible feature where you can simply highlight any text, be it the full pros on an entire novel or a single article, then right click on the highlighted text and say "Add to iTunes as spoken track". After a short bit of processing... BOOM! You've got an audio file that's essentially an audiobook. Created quickly from ANY text you can copy from. Alchemical mind gold! A life-changing process for the autodidact we will all one day come to be.
Being a couple years into listening to self-created audio book files, I've started to incorporate a time-saving technique of listening to them at faster speed. A must have crucial feature for audiobook playback software and any video playback worth it’s weight in gold.
Music requires being listened to at proper speed but a human being's voice does not. In fact, most people's voices and speech patterns have caused them to deliver oral information quite inefficiently and work better sped up a bit. Rather than spending 3 full hours listening to that latest epic podcast at speed, try it at a 1.5x speed or even a 2x speed. You'll get just as much out of it in a much more efficient time frame. This process will allow your yummy intel sponging ratio to increase daily. It also works well on mediocre films. Such as kind of boring documentaries or Michael Bay action films where the dialogue just doesn't carry the visuals. Like all muscles, mental processes require exercise and building up the ability to listen quicker will rapidly move you to become more Jedi and less Muggle in no time.