Reading Books vs Browsing the Internet

written on January 17, 2011 in Informative and Me and My Books and My Articles and My Life and To Think with no comments
Reading a book

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Books – Those Good Old Days

I always loved to read books. I think I got this habit from mom or grandma. Growing up, I had a huge stack of books that of my parents in my living room. I always thought It is how everybody lived. My mom used to tell me tales of how my grand mother has read each and every book in the library of her little village.

Books were my companions when lessons got bored in high school. They walked with me and guided my path. I still remember how I saved every single rupee my mom gave me for lunch or snacks to buy books.

Books were my first love. I credit my entire ability/skills/knowledge to books. They literally changed my life.

G.K. Chesterton once said, “There is a great deal of difference between an eager man who wants to read a book and the tired man who wants a book to read”. I am not sure which kind of man I am, But I do know for sure that all great men (at-least the ones that I admire the most) are books lovers.

Internet – The Dawn of Intelligence Distraction

But things changed when I got broadband internet. Even after that I read a lot. But I read from the internet. I was been reading books as much as I should. But I always consoled myself that my reading habit has adapted itself to the changing technology. But I was wrong.

Slowly my sleeping pattern began to change because of late-hour-browsing. I began to sleep very late, usually anywhere between 1 am to 3 am. Some days I went to bed even at 5 am after browsing and woke up between 9 am to 12 noon. This way of life had its toll on my body.

Most of the times people ask me what I do so late. But it is hard to explain. I don’t plan these things. It happens. I view a page that is interesting, click thru links and before I know I end up in a completely different webpage with different content than the one I started with. Right now, as I am typing this, I have 14 tabs open in the background waiting for me to read them.

Long story short, I screwed up my biological clock. Now even If i wanted to sleep at 9 pm, I couldn’t. I was confused and didn’t know what to do. I did everything from exercise to meditation. Nothing worked.

Books vs Internet

What I'm reading and re-reading

Image by Earl - What I Saw 2.0 via Flickr

Even though Internet is now the new Constantinople, the source of wisdom for kids these days, I don’t think it will ever replace books. At-least for me. I just found out that there is a basic difference between reading a book and browsing the net.

By my experiences I found out that “Reading a book is a form of meditation”

It was one of the wow-moments of my life. Browsing internet is completely full of distractions. You don’t stay in a single topic for longer than 5 minutes (best case). But with books you stay (meditate) on the same topic for hours together. So it is far better than reading from a computer.

Now coming back to my problem. During one of my sleepless nights, I decided to go back to my old pal – books. What a relief! I was again in the same old place after years.  And most importantly I fell asleep and I woke up early. With minimal effort I changed my biological clock back to normal. It was better this time. I was not simply waking up early. I was waking up with energy and zest.

This might be an age old news for some of you, but it is new for me. So, If you want to do the same, here is exactly what I did. At least for an hour before going to sleep shut down your computer and pick up a book to read. Not a news paper/periodicals. But a real book. The book might be a novel or anything of your choice and began reading.  And sleep only when sleep comes. Don’t sleep because its time.

It worked for me. I hope it works for you too. Try this and tell me about your experience. And hi, you check out my library for a list of good books or suggest me one of your favorites.

Happy Reading. :-)