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Applying the Filter of Time to Your Reading List

Applying the Filter of Time to Your Reading List
It’s better to read old books than new books. We can take advantage of the filter of time.


Why Read Old Books?

Across the globe, we publish ~2.2 million new books annually. How do we know which ones are worth reading? We can’t read them all.


If you’re 30 years old and read an average of 12 books a year, you’ll read 624 more books in your life. Assuming you live to be 82. Out of the millions of books available to us, which ones should make it onto our list of 624?


Here’s a tip.


If you read older books, you have an advantage. We know which books contain timeless truths, not just passing trends. Because they’re still relevant today.


Here are five books first published 60+ years ago in the 1950s that are still in publication:

  1. On The Road, by Jack Kerouac

  2. A Raisin in the Sun, by Lorraine Hansberry

  3. The Old Man and the Sea, by Ernest Hemingway

  4. Notes of a Native Son, by James Baldwin

  5. The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe, by CS Lewis

Those are five books worth reading. It’s better to read old books than new books. Not because all the books written 60, 200, or 400 years ago are better than the 2.2 million books published last year. But because if you’re still aware of a book written decades or centuries ago, it’s passed through the filter of time.


If it passed through that filter, it probably tells a timeless truth. And if it tells a timeless truth, it’s probably worth reading.


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