I am trying to read “Atlas Shrugged” by Ayn Rand for last 2 months - 2 pages per day, but somehow I am keeping it going. During my furious reading days (school/college), I used to finish a book at one go sometimes without putting it down even once. If a book is taken up on a weekday, then until it finishes, there is a good feeling while returning home that there is something waiting for me. It is like the excitement of a kid waiting for the postman to bring the month’s edition of children’s books.

Reading sometimes gives a feeling of getting detached from this world for some time and wandering in the fantasy worlds built with words. Something like a drunken stupor. Slowly the characters will be given a shape, some nudging from the author by giving hints about their features, then each small piece is added up, then we match it with somebody or something we have seen and registered in the subconscious and starts taking them through the story. Sometimes at the end of the story, I had revelations that the place, which I was imagining while reading, was something I had seen in a movie. It is like a drama going on in mind - characters, place and time constructed from the hints given by the author, played out on the script provided by the book. There is creative activity going in the background. It does not stop with that. It is like taking a shot of strongest liquor. Effect lingers for couple of days. Keep replaying situations going back and forth in the story, changing the course of the story, giving new climaxes, thinking over some new ideas from the book and discussing it with any available person. A story, which can take you away from this world as far as possible or lets you forget everything around you for sufficient period, is the best. If you say at the end of a show that you didn’t notice time flying by, then it must be something good.

I started this post for saying something about the philosophy in Atlas Shrugged, but as usual went off track. I will get back to that some other time.


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