Wednesday, June 15, 2005

The Infection....

Yep, been infected with the Book Meme virus....got it from Geets and Girish. So you know exactly whom to blame if I decide to "tag" you at the end of this and you too are thereby infected :-)

I really haven't being doing too much reading for the past few months really. Mainly because I have been into a whole new and very time-consuming exercise.....doing nothing. As I've no doubt mentioned earlier, I find it one of the most engrossing occupations....but never mind about that.....let's proceed with the Book Meme thingy....

Total Number of Books I Own:

This is kinda dubious. If this means the books in my HOUSE, that would be....ummm.....well over a thousand. And I am not joking. And no, these do not include academic books and all that. Both my mother and I are avid readers and a visit to the bookstore which is common) yields an addition of at least 10-15 to the already immense collection. My OWN collection (books I have bought) probably stands in the region of around 250 or so....

Last Book I Bought: Bought 4 books last time I did. They were "The Dilbert Future", "Apology", "Liar's Poker" and "Paradise Lost".

Last Book I Read: "Apology" by Plato. It's about the trial and subsequent conviction of Socrates by the people of Athens. The speech by Socrates is mind-numbing at some parts.

Five Books That Mean a Lot to Me: This is another toughie....but here goes. These are not ranked or anything like that......

1. Chariots of the Gods. I read it at a time when I had a great thirst for knowledge and a great deal of cynicism about the things I was being told to believe. This book did wonders for me. Opened my mind to a new school of thuoght. I now hold a different belief, but this book is the one that started me down that path.

2. Symoposium. This book by Plato is the first of the Socratic dialogues I read. The concept of absolutism was something that always troubled me. The reasoning of Socrates when advocating the relativity and situational aspects is so lucid. It's also very close to the Gita in some ways.

3. The Code of the Woosters. PG Wodehouse at his supreme best. This man's talent for making things sound hilarious is beyond anything I have ever come across. His usage of words is phenomenal too. He's done wonders for my vocabulary. I read this book when really depressed...and it was amazing how good I suddenly felt.....awesome....

4. The Bhagwad Gita. I am not religious in any way....and nor is the book essentially. Take away the parts about "God" (which IMHO are midieval additions to make it more acceptable to a layman) and the truths in that are something amazing. A reading of Socratic dialogues after that shows so many similarities in thought.....fantastic.....

5. Ancient Indian Philosophy. Possible the biggest revelation and the best. It's amazing to realize that the true Indian philosophy does not define "God", does not mention "God" and lays down no rules. It is mind-numbingly brilliant. Those people spoke about a unified theory, the oneness of force etc....these concepts have only struck the modern (read western) world recently. (The unified theory and the oneness concepts have developed only in the 90s). I was not able to read this completely, but it spellbound me while I was at it.......a must-read....will add more once I get hold of it and finish reading the entire book.

Tag five people and have them do this on their blogs:

Neeta
Suhas
Vidhi
Egghead
Ted

Cheers folks! And yeah, barring any major events cropping up, my next planned post is "In Mars We Trust - IV". In case you haven't read the previous ones and want to (can't believe why anyone WOULD want to, but still, one does endeavour to be as lucid as possible and maintain continuity), you can at:

In Mars We Trust - I
Appendix to In Mars We Trust - I
In Mars We Trust - II
In Mars We Trust - III

8 comments:

shrikanth said...

Hi Mukund,
You haven't named the book.(the one on Ancient Indian Philosophy)Is it a commentary on the Upanishads?

Darth Midnightmare said...

Yeah. Actually, that was some obscure book a friend's friend gave me for a day. Am trying to trace the book from him (he's in Belgium). It was titled "Ancient Indian Philosophy" (or something similar). It's more about Vedic philosophy and the Sanaatan concepts. So stuff like the Universe not really existing, Maya, the Force etc are discussed in amazing depth and the clarity is stunning. So is the ease with which it convinces you, for it leaves no grey areas as such.....that's why I am desperate to get hold of it and finish the thing.....

Naveen said...

WOW!!!didnt know philosophy was 1 of ur interests...mine too tho i have only started reading on it...have got dialogues of plato but its not a collection of complete works just parts of is works but the way socrates explains everything and examines every aspect of the arguments is amazing...he elucidates everything beautifully...have also read some works of j. krishnamurthy...dont like him very much but still since i havent read much on this subject i dont consider myself an expert on it...
dont ya have ne ebooks on philosophy??

naveen

Vidhi said...

hi johnny...was absent from the blogging scene for a while...! and now that u've given me this task, will do it as soon as i can!

and who is 'mukund' that shrikanth is referring to?!

Darth Midnightmare said...

Naveen: I have read that. It's incorrectly named actually. Those are Socratic dialogues. In some, like Crito (one of the best), Plato is not even present. But he's documented them....the titles actually convey that those are Platonic dialogues....sad, but anyway.....the worse part about that book is that it doesn't give you the background....like in Apology you don't know why he is being tried or the scenes that precede his speech. You are forced to piece it together from his words....

Vidhi: That's my name actually :D.

Naveen said...

damn rite u are...neways please find that book(ancient indian philosophy...sounds interesting), read it and then write a review on it...do tell its name as well...
Naveen

kjgvjv said...

nice blog egghead. roll out ur thoughts

kjgvjv said...

i am sorry mike, i mistook this to b egghead's comment window,

any ways gr8 blog dude. good to kno more abt ur thoughts.

bye

Vijay