TIM BUNTING

KIWI YAMABUSHI

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Alternative ways of reading

I forget which podcast I heard it on, but it was on a Tim Ferriss podcast. There was someone who either wrote or recommended a book on how to read books. From what I remember, the conclusion was a good place to start, as this was where authors summarize the contents rather succinctly. Anyway, this alternative method of reading a book may be just what I’m looking for.

Not to make my reading more efficient, there’s many ways I could do that (I could start with putting my iPad down at night), no I mean to convince people of alternative ways of looking at the world.

As a kiwi living in Japan (I don’t want to use that phrase too often if I can avoid it), I see many cultural differences. We have to remember that they are just different, not wrong (see Derek Sivers’ podcast on the Tim Ferriss show), but it sometimes (often) pains me to see people living how they’ve been educated to live, and struggling in some way. This is exactly because I know there are other ways of doing things.

Life in Japan, well where I am at least, is very much set in stone. People don’t venture very far from the norm, often aiming for the safe option. That’s fine and everything, but there comes a point where they become dissatisfied. And if they’re following what they’ve been educated to follow, this will definitely come.

They need to realise that their lives aren’t set in stone. Of course they may have family to look after, but they must have spare time to work on outside projects, no? That may be hard to fathom in a country whose national pastime is overwork, but I would argue that they aren’t forced into their situation. There are plenty of opportunities for work in places that treat them fairly.

Either way, reading a book not in sequential order is something I feel not many people here do. It might be enough to trigger a response and reflection on life. God knows some people need that.

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Tim Bunting Kiwi Yamabushi

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Sakata City, Yamagata, Japan 

tim@timbunting.com

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