By Sodeeq Abdulakeem Sulyman
I think every home of anybody who considers himself a serious minded person should have a library because it can affect your children.” – Reuben Abati
After I have taken an ample amount of time to study the downward trajectory in the reading culture of we Nigerians, I am deeming it fit for myself to call for a change of narrative in the slip of priority we have dug for ourselves. As Writer, Author and typical Nigerians, I am writing today to blend my background, orientation and experience to expand the horizon of the profession I practice – Librarianship.
I am doing this to rise to the challenge of Ayn Rand in his saying that “Professional intellectuals are the voice of a culture and are, therefore, its leaders, its integrators and its bodyguards.” That I will be safeguarding the interests, principles and ideologies of my profession this very moment is something I am honoured to do and I will do it dearly, endearing to my heart.
Let me ask you this question: What is your perception of libraries? I know the common notion about it is that it is a storehouse of books! To perceive a library as such is ignorance on its own. But because this write-up is not about what a library is, but about why you need it for your personal and professional growth, I will just highlight some points on how having a collection of information resources for yourself can be beneficial to you and the people around you.
Library, as a social institution, has been one of the instruments used for intellectual war in the time immemorial. In the Mesopotamia and Ancient World, libraries were resources used by Kings in their Temples and Palaces to demonstrate their fascination for and advancement in knowledge. In the Monastic Era, the Monks used libraries for their intellectual nourishment and spiritual purification. And even in recent times, libraries have supported individuals, corporations, organisations, regions and countries in achieving their aspirations and goals.
I want to believe that you have been convinced with the little facts I have presented above. Therefore, let me tell you more on why you need to build an armoury of information resources.
It Inspires You to Read: Having your own library fuels you to read books and reading on its own strengthens you by building you in various capacities and aspects of your life, where you need to be better. The major excuse most people give when you ask them why their reading culture is poor is that they have no books to read. However, when you are inspired to read, you find a balance between the real world and imagined world. Lisa See says, “Read a thousand books, and your words will flow like a river. ”
You Won’t Never Feel Lonely: The reason for some people to end up being a victim of acute depression is because they have not discovered the companionship books can offer them. Yusuf Olaolu Ali affirmed that “A book is like a best friend who will never walk away from you. A book communicates knowledge, and not only knowledge but wisdom of all kinds.” In the pages of books are proven solutions to life challenges that may cause you depression.
It Fuels Your Drives for Learning: Having a library of your own always charges you to learn. If you have a library, you will perceive every eventuality of life as learning opportunities, therefore, when you find yourself in an unpleasant situation, you will always be driven to unravel the secrets behind such a situation, how you can avoid it in the future and also reveals your level of understanding about concepts that are of interest to you. That library stimulates your interest in what you desire makes it a must have for you.
It Takes You Through the World You Have Not Physically Been to: The library has served as the foundation for the intellectual expedition of many people. Through the information resources contained in your library, you can travel through many worlds and ideas which will enrich your understanding and exposure about other people, culture, practices, philosophies and monuments.
It Enriches Your Intellect: Contained in the libraries are intellectual works of different individuals who have understood and interpreted concepts and ideas in their own terms. Thus, by having your library and pondering on the collection stocked in it, you will learn from different views, beliefs and interpretations that you can use as foundations for your own intellectual grooming and shape your objectivity about issues, which in the end will influence premising your views and positions on truth. Kurt Vonnegut opined that “New knowledge is the most valuable commodity on earth. The more truth we have to work with, the richer we become.”
Don’t let this write-up only inspire you to be acquiring books, let it illuminate you to buy books and read them. Kola Adesina worried that “I have seen friends buying books without reading them. When you buy books and you don’t read them, they simply mean advertisements; they are just an availability of cover without content.” Take advantage of both the cover and the content in the books you possess.
SULYMAN, Sodeeq Abdulakeem is a Librarian, Author. He can be reached via +2348132226994. His new book titled: “The Path to Greatness,” foreword by Henry Ukazu, President and Founder of GLOEMI Inc., The Bronx, New York City, USA, is now available onhttps://bit.ly/Amzn-HS-TP2G