Setting a Reading Goal

In March I completed a read of The Lotus Sutra and had two other books in progress. I must admit that my reading has taken a back-seat to homeschool and and baby-related stuff, but I’m trying hard to make time for it again. That said, I got to thinking last week, with both of my current open texts nearing completion, it was time to start thinking about what I’d read next. Sure, I don’t seem to find time for it every day, but perish the thought that I’d have time to read but no new material to dig into! That would be terrible!

Some time after reading The Lotus Sutra, I made the decision that I would eventually read it again, but using a different translation. I have purchased a copy of it, but I just not quite ready to make re-reading it a priority. Instead, I had a little extra money on an Amazon gift card and decided to purchase both the Middle Length and Long Discourses of the Buddha.

Weighing in around 2,000 pages cumulatively, I’m sure they will prove challenging. I’m not really a “reader,” a fact to which my high school English class grades would attest, but I have found it amazingly beneficial both for informational purposes and to help calm the mind of all the over-stimulation of electronic media.

On the matter of these two mammoths, I am going to set a goal today: By year end 2013, I intend to have both texts completed. This means, if I started them today, I’d need to read a little under 4 pages per day. In order to make progress toward this goal, I am going to try to “pre-schedule” time for additional reading. Starting with ten minutes after my morning recitations and ten minutes immediately prior to bed, effective immediately. Additional time will be allocated when permissible, and I may leave one of my currently open books at work so that it can be finished on breaks rather than during these dedicated periods at home.

I’m also going to stop sacrificing time that is set aside for reading for blogging. I suspect no one reading will notice any difference, though.  Ha!

Maybe setting this goal, and sharing it with my friends here, will help me to stick to it. I’ll update with progress sometime and we’ll see. I hope you are well tonight and are finding success in your own spiritual goals. I will post again soon, friends.

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3 comments

  1. That’s a wonderful goal! :-). It’s so hard to prioritise and make time for all the things that we want to (and should) achieve each day. I think by breaking it down into 4 pages a day it becomes much more achievable, and much less onerous.

  2. Dennis Beyer · · Reply

    I’m by no means a fast reader, one of the things that I was thrilled with when I finished school was that I could 1. choose what I wanted to read and 2. read at my own pace. I always found the rate that it was expected that we read full novels to be a breakneck pace. I’m the type that needs to read at a slower pace to catch all of what needs to be caught for lack of a better way to put it. If I read faster we’d talk in class about x y or z and I and sometimes I’d have no clue what people were talking about, not so much because I didn’t get the book (fortunately I am good at that) but more so that I missed it because I was trying to read too quickly.

    Now I love that I can just sit back and read at my snail’s pace, compared to my wife anyway, who devour’s sometimes 2-3 books a week, and really enjoy my books. I rarely can remember having to force myself to put the book down and do things that are required of me… like returning to work after a break 🙂

    I guess my point is I totally agree at setting a goal for yourself but totally understand the slower pace that you’ll find yourself needing to read at, better to be able to catch it all and come away feeling confident that you understand it all as well as possible.

    1. I think you understand my feelings on this matter entirely, my friend. 🙂 I, too, had difficulty with reading assignments in school, and I never feel like I “get the point” of a book if I don’t spend a pretty good amount of time in it. I’m glad to see I’m not the only one. Ha!

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