Have you read any good books lately? If so, I’d like to get some feedback from you (see my email at the end of the column.
For the last week I’ve been reading (for the second time; some of us are slower than others) “The Science of God” by Gerald Schroeder, a PhD physicist from The Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he taught for several years before moving to the Weizmann Institute in Israel. From the book cover: “In a brilliant and wide ranging discussion of key topics that have divided science and religion , such as free will, the development of the universe, the origin of life and the origin of man, Schroeder argues that the latest science and a close reading of the Bible are not just compatible but interdependent”!
It is a fascinating, and for me, humbling and mind-stretching read that says both the six day creation account of Genesis AND the billions of years that science say it took to form our universe are BOTH true. You just have to understand Einstein’s law of relativity to get it. Obviously, it’s not a book that’s going to be on People Magazine’s best seller list (if they have one) but it is fascinating to me. I would definitely recommend it for pastors, also.
So why read stuff like this when you can be entertained 24/7 with HDTV in surround sound? Because it is mentally stimulating and promotes conversation, both of which we need as seniors to keep our minds sharp and guard against dementia. If we’re not careful, we’ll leave the TV on during most of our waking hours which means there is not conversation (2-way communication), but rather, one-way communication going from the TV to you; you can’t debate it even if you disagree with it.
How do I do it? I try to be very intentional about reading by setting a goal of one new book a week. Do I always make it? No, but at least I’ve been striving toward that for the last several years and I don’t even want to think about going back. I say going back because we used to have the TV on basically nonstop when we were at home. That changed when we moved to the farm six years ago. My wife and I occasionally reconfirm with each other about the decision. Yep, we still agree as of last week.
Do we miss the TV? I wouldn’t be entirely truthful if I said I didn’t, especially during football season. I cope with that by watching the important games with one of my sons. I’ve also wondered what I’d do if I ever became a widower. That’s a tough one. I can’t even comprehend the loneliness that I’d feel and so I can’t say what I’d do about TV in those circumstances.
But what I can say is that for the here and now , while I still have the incredible wife I have (49 years this fall!!!), I’m glad we’ve pulled the TV plug and that we’re using the library card instead. It’s a double blessing when one of us finds a book we’d enjoy reading aloud to each other. We’ve done several like that but I don’t think she’d like the physicist I’m reading now. Oh, well, maybe next month!
Do you know where your library card is?
Thanks for reading All About Seniors…..see you next week!
Bill Milby, CSA, is a Certified Senior Advisor and a Director of Visiting Angels® of Macon, a non-medical, living assistance service for seniors. If you have questions or comments about this column you can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo credit: Iris reading – check them out to find out how to speed read!
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