Decartes once said, “Cogito, ergo sum” (“I think, therefore I am”). But what does it mean to think? That is perhaps one of the most subjective questions, given everybody has their own ideas on what it means to think. Yet, allow me to make an attempt at describing what thinking means; let’s abstract out, take a step back and think about thinking. To me, thinking usually means inspecting a concoction of facts, ideas, experience, imagination, emotions and prospects, among many other things, and come to a conclusion using rationality.
Nevertheless, most people agree that there are “better” ways of thinking – this is reinforced by the fact that people who tend to think “better” are rewarded by the society; which need not be something as trivial as a financial reward. Once again, there are different opinions on how one can improve one’s thinking However, there is something objective among all this subjectivity – reading helps people think better. But, reading can be more than just a tool to help one think better – reading can be emotionally gratifying, it can be comforting, it can be liberating, it can be redemption; it is not far fetched to say that reading can be anything one wants it to be.
This edition, kMITRA decided to take up a book reading activity in which every member was assigned a book to read over the summer. Inevitably, reading a book takes one into a completely different world from reality. But one’s time in the book, just like everything, eventually comes to an end. However, a part of the book still remains with the reader – even after the book ends, forever. It is these little pieces that (re)shape the reader. This “(re)shaping” is apparent immediately after finishing reading the book as inspiration. It is based off of these inspirations that the posts in this edition were written.
Literature is arguably mankind’s greatest creation; it makes me elated – for there is infinite beautiful literature to be read, but the same fact also makes me heartbroken – for there is infinite beautiful literature that I will never read. Such is the nature of infinity, so intriguing yet so overwhelming. Nonetheless, reading an infinitesimal amount of infinite literature can still fundamentally change what a person is. Thus I’d like to conclude by saying I read, therefore I am.