Thursday, October 27, 2005

recent reading

I haven’t written a post about my reading habits in a while. So the larger number of listings is due to the time between the posts, not because of a quicker clip on my part.

First of all, I finished the latest Harry Potter. I saw a really funny idea about what might be the end of the next book. To see it – click here. (But only if you’ve finished #6).

I also read two great books by Malcolm GladwellThe Tipping Point and Blink. While those books were later recommended to me, I was first introduced to Gladwell by a friend, who had me read an article of his on a topic that didn’t seem terribly interesting – ketchup. It turned out to be an amazingly interesting article. He has great insights into the way the human mind and human society work. I’m trying to figure out how to use his understandings to help me better comprehend Judaism. That will probably come later.

I’ve finished reading one of the first autobiographies I’ve read in years – Natan Sharansky’s Fear No Evil. After finishing it, I’ve gone back to reading Abba Eban’s autobiography. Both books are a great way to understand important chapters in Jewish history that I knew about, but not nearly enough. But two things surprised me in particular: a) both Sharansky and Eban have a great sense of humor, and b) they both accomplished so much at a young age. Not much older than I am. I can’t help but wonder what that says about what I’ve accomplished so far.

My mishnayot learning is going along, albeit a bit slower than in the past. I’ve finished Masechet Shabbat, and am now trudging through Masechet Eruvin. It’s actually more interesting than I anticipated, but it’s still difficult. At this rate I’ll be lucky to get to Pesachim by Pesach…