Monday, February 23, 2009

More on Book Choices

I got this quote by Richard H. Cracroft e-mailed to me the other day. It goes right along with this post from a month ago.

"Because life and time are short, we will be able to read only a few thousand books in our lifetime. When we pick any book, we are ruling out hundreds and thousands of other books. How important it is then, to choose time-proven great books that will foster the Holy Spirit and enable us to rise to greater levels of truth and beauty and insight and understanding and, hence, spirituality. Many great men and women have found that a steady, systematic approach to literature has enabled them to fill their beings, in a lifetime of good reading, with the great thoughts of men and women of all ages, for through reading great books we are put in touch with the great minds of all time, and we become their spiritual and intellectual heirs."
This is in response to a question about how to judge literature as good or bad. The rest of the article is excellent too. I highly recommend it. If I wasn't already getting picky about what I read, this helped me be even more so.


  1. I can't help myself (:))...I have to pass on a piece of literature that definitely fits this guideline. (You know when you read something that really speaks to your spirit you just have to tell everyone.) I'm planning a blog review on it soon. But, I still have 1 chpater left. Mormon Scientist, The life of Henry Eyring is one of those that definitely 'enable us to rise to greater levels of truth and beauty and insight and understanding and, hence, spirituality'

  2. I really liked that Q and A. Great stuff! There have definitely been books that I can read now, that I couldn't earlier. I love how he framed his answer based upon where the person is in their development. I love how he talked about books that are negative (i.e. Tess) but that we can learn from. I listen closely in General Conference now to hear what the prophet, apostles and general authorities are quoting from literature.

    When you say that you have become more selective, is that something that happened recently or within the last year or so? What have you cut out that you might have read before. I find it interesting, because the literature I will read is actually expanding from where I was before. But, I do want to keep from heading in the wrong direction so I'm trying to stay open to what the Spirit has to say!

    I really want that Mormon Scientist book!

  3. I've been wanting to read Mormon Scientist, so good to hear you are enjoying it Kathryn.

    Cindi, one example is "Angela's Ashes." The first 2/3 to 3/4 of the book was really eye opening. It made me see how resilient people can be, how little we really need, and the terrible circumstances some people live in. BUT, there were a lot of things in there during that last 1/3 to 1/4, that was, as Mr. Cracroft puts it, "blatant immorality in the name of truth." Before reading that article I thought maybe someday I would read it again, and maybe the first goodly chunk I will. But I have no reason to read the ending again. And I'm perfectly happy with that.

  4. It's why I like those kid's books - no author trying to impress anyone with his filth. :) Mormon Scientist sounds good - I'll have to get it. I also want to read the bios of each of the US Presidents, but read the ones of the Prophets from that time in between. We bought Prophets and Presidents and it was fantastic. An eye opener for times like ours.