In an all-girls school in Bisya, while many of the young girls are busy with different activities during one of their breaks, Grade 12 student Tharwa was busy with her books. She’s one of many from her school who developed a deep love for reading and writing and hoping to become a good author one day. In her own time, she is studying the different styles of writing of her favourite authors. She can’t imagine a world without them.
Many professional and CEOs all over the world believe that no matter how much experience one has, without books he wouldn’t stay enlightened. For a lot of readers, a day without a book is like living in the dessert without water. While television offer a quick escape and is a good source of entertainment, many still prefer the company of books. As American novelist Anne Tyler said, “I read so I can live more than one life in more than one place”.
One of Safia al Kindi’s first activities in the morning is reading at least one page from a book on her growing collection displayed in her bookshelf. A voracious reader, she shared that wherever she can, she reads even in social media apps.
“I read wherever I get it. Twitter is usually offer an entertaining read but books cause special delight especially when you hold it in your hand,” she said.
In a recent viral trend in Twitter, netizens were asked what they will do if they were living in a village where possessing a book is prohibited and that being caught with one is a criminal act and can lead to being burned at the stake.
The responses were massive and many detested the idea with several saying they cannot imagine abandoning their books or leaving with the people they don’t trust.
In such a scenario, Mia’ad Alharbi shared in a tweet that she will definitely leave the village without hesitation. Others, appalled, said they are willing to break such an outrageous law and will go as far as hiding their books in secured locations.
While reading books may decline among the youth in some parts of the world, in Oman many are aware of the benefits of reading that bookstores and libraries still enjoy a good number of visits.
Sarah Almuraikhi, an Omani who claimed she’s a prolific reader, said that she has adopted a cycle of picking books and going through them one by one. She shared she might stop every once in a while but she always goes back to the habit with more enthusiasm.
Sarah’s brother has been an avid reader as well and it is for this love of books that he started his own business in book trade. He opened Qurra’a Oman which first started online and now is an independent book store.
One of the latest authors based in Oman who published the book “The Answer with Sheikh Khalfan al Esry” is journalist Lakshmi Kothaneth. A prominent figure in the media industry with a career spanning more than two decades, Lakshmi shared that if one day all the book disappeared in the world, she said it would totally be miserable.
Sharing a little bit about her work, Lakshmi shared that writing the book was a promise.
“I had to keep it. I used to often discuss it with Sheikh Khalfan. He wanted it to be a friendly book which people could carry around. I had the blessed opportunity to interview him for more than a decade. I have definitely benefited from his wisdom so it was my duty to provide it for others – especially they youth and the upcoming generation,” she shared.
“Writing needs pure dedication and discipline. I was doing it while I work full time. I am into procrastination as well. But I have a family and group of mentors and friends who made sure I was on target. I could have done it earlier. But everything happens when the time is right. My mother was one person who wanted it to be done as soon as possible,” she shared.
“A world without printed words — that you could hold in your hands — and carries you away into a world of your own is totally unimaginable. Books is one of the best things humans came up with. It is one of the best forms of education,” Lakshmi said.
This is something Arabian author Ahmed Alzammam definitely agree with when he said that “reading is not only a commodity or to read letters cumulated on papers. But, it is the evolution of ideology and knowledge growth.”
OMAIMA al Kindi