It is winter and as usual everyone found walking on Moscow Street is well wrapped in protective clothing. I needed to attend anatomy class but looking at the weather I was contemplating whether to go or not. The lecture was four metro stops away from the nearest metro station. I considered the 15 minutes’ walk from my hostel to the metro station a great torture since it is was 40 degrees below zero.
Anyone who knew me could hardly make me out when I stepped out of the hostel. The 3 Jack Jones jeans I wore made me look so obese and funny. I hurried through the street as fast as my legs could carry me. I had a typical Ninja look since the only exposed part of my face was the eye.
There is no doubt Moscow is the most difficult place to live as a single guy or girl. Couples Kissing on the moving escalator in the subway on a cold winter morning is enough to make you feel so lonely. I quickly removed my face coverings to avoid any unnecessary stare from the crowd as I descended down the escalator into the subway.
As a normal trend, passengers in the metro who are not occupied with reading, fidgeting with phones, listening to music, or engaged in conversations are more often than not found stealing glances at other passengers. Since I wasn’t ready to steal glance at other passengers I pulled out my red Denon AH-C400 earpiece to listen to an inspirational podcast from Jim Rohn which I downloaded a night before.
It is so true, that when your ear is exposed to the right information at the very right time, you hardly recognize the surrounding environment. I listened attentively;
“All of the books that we will ever need to make us as rich, as healthy, as happy, as powerful, as sophisticated and as successful as we want to be have already been written. People from all walks of life, people with some of the most incredible life experiences, people that have gone from pennies to fortune and from failure to success have taken the time to write down their experiences so that we might share in their wealth of knowledge. They have offered their wisdom and experience so that we can be inspired by it and instructed by it, and so that we can amend our philosophy by it. Their contributions enable us to reset our sail based upon their experiences. They have handed us the gift of their insights so that we can change our plans, if need be, in order to avoid their errors. We can rearrange our lives based on their wise advice.”
The first 2 minutes into the podcast message made me forget that I was even in the metro, I completely forget my early loneliness encounter on the escalator upon seeing a dozen of couples kissing and chit-chatting. I was completely soaked in the message and I did not want to miss even a second of the message.
“All of the insights that we might ever need have already been captured by others in books. The important question is this: In the last ninety days, with this treasure of information that could change our lives, our fortunes, our relationships, our health, our children and our careers for the better, how many books have we read?”
I felt so sorry for myself, after 3 years of studies in my university, all I read was my university course books and lectures. I couldn’t recollect any non-academic book that I read and was able to even half-way complete.
“Why do we neglect to read the books that can change our lives? Why do we complain but remain the same? Why do so many of us curse the effect but nourish the cause? HOW DO WE EXPLAIN THE FACT THAT ONLY THREE PERCENT OF OUR ENTIRE NATIONAL POPULATION POSSESS A LIBRARY CARD—a card that would give us access to all of the answers to success and happiness we could ever want? Those who wish for the better life cannot permit themselves to miss the books that could have a major impact on how their lives turn out. The book they miss will not help! And the issue is not that books are too expensive! If a person concludes that the price of buying the book is too great, wait until he must pay the price for not buying it. Wait until he receives the bill for continued and prolonged ignorance.
There is very little difference between someone who cannot read and someone who will not read. The result of either is ignorance. Those who are serious seekers of personal development must remove the self-imposed limitations they have placed on their reading skills and their reading habits. There are a multitude of classes being taught on how to be a good reader and there are thousands of books on the shelves of the public libraries just waiting to be read. Reading is essential for those who seek to rise above the ordinary. We must not permit anything to stand between us and the book that could change our lives.”
I was almost locked in between the closing metro gates because it escaped my mind that I had reached my destination and needed to swiftly move out when I saw the door closing. I covered back my face (Ninja look) as I exited the metro, I couldn’t help but listen to the last part of the podcast message;
“A little reading each day will result in a wealth of valuable information in a very short period of time. But if we fail to set aside the time, if we fail to pick up the book, if we fail to exercise the discipline, then ignorance will quickly move in to fill the void.
Those who seek a better life must first become a better person. They must continually seek after self- mastery for the purpose of developing a balanced philosophy of life, and then live in accordance with the dictates of that philosophy. The habit of reading is a major stepping stone in the development of a sound philosophical foundation. And in my opinion it is one of the fundamentals required for the attainment of success and happiness.”
When you come to Russia books have its own value and meaning. Russians are one of the world’s top three nations who read the most. The Chinese came in first place, and the Spanish in third. Look around when you are in a metro. People read books and make notes. It’s a part of their life as on the long way to work a book is the best companion.
Today I can boast of personal small library and be hoping to expand. I am better off in knowledge and wisdom than 2 years back when I used not to read. I am confident of the future because I have become a great student of life.
Why not move away from the 97 percent without library cards and good reading habits and join the reading 3 percent.