Monday, August 22, 2011

Day 20-A Book you would recommend to an ignorant/racist/closed minded person

This is, for me, a problematic topic. I've stated before my personal stance against recommending books to anyone. What I like is probably not what you like. By way of illustration, a college friend and I were going to do a "book a month" book discussion. She chose My Antonia by Willa Cather. It's a great book. We actually spent 6 weeks discussing things we found in the book. My choice was House of the Seven Gables by Nathaniel Hawthorn.

I had never read it and have always been intrigued by it. It's considered a minor classic. Becky couldn't read it. She got through about 5 pages and said it was just not something she could ever see herself reading. It was way too dark for her. The book is about redemption and how it comes in a variety of forms but you have to get through the set up to see how it plays out. I felt badly that I would choose something she really, really did not like.

I also have a tendency not to choose people in my social circle who could be described as "ignorant, racist or closed-minded". Do we have differing points of view? Absolutely, but I can't think of someone I know who falls into those categories. I wouldn't have them as friends and, by extension, wouldn't recommend a book to them. I would never recommend a book to someone I don't know without a long discussion of what they like to read.

But there must be something I can put in this topic. Yes, there is. I picked up this book in 1993. I was in therapy at the time, struggling with a variety of things that were making me terribly unhappy. My therapist suggested that I have a co-dependent personality and that I was addicted to the actions and behaviors which described this. I do not remember how I found this book, but I do remember it struck a chord with me.

We can become addicted to so much in life. It's not just alcohol or tobacco, it's behaviors; playing video games and acting like a diva, to name a couple of things. The book talked about how to get rid of the addiction, regardless of what it is. I remember reading it 3-4 times a year for 5 years, while I worked to better myself and get over my co-dependency.

I would recommend this book to someone matching the title description. I think the theme of grace in one's life applies to addictions as well as to ignorance and racism. Yes, this book leans on the Christian tradition of grace, but the author talks about why we become attached to things and that can apply to why we view others in a less than good light. I never felt talked down to while reading this and I think that approach is good. It's not very big and it can be read in about 2-3 hours. It's a good book to have in your library for those times when you feel you need a refresher on how you conquered your addiction in the past.

Beverage:  Pepsi


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