Introspection and reflections are hardly accorded much attention except from perhaps writers. Making readers believe in completely non-existent characters is no small feat. People say anybody can be a writer, but not everybody is, so what is it that make writers what they are? Creating complete, distingishable characters cannot simply be an accomplishment of the imagination. There is more to it, there is the power of analysing and understanding human nature. The power of introspection, that allows one to look within oneself to discern the incredible range of feelings and emotions surging there. It is these emotions that writers eventually infuse into their characters.
Although a “book” is an abstract entity that is impossible to be surmised into clear, concise definitions, a generalisation can be attempted here. Have you ever thought back and realised that all that you are today has been shaped by books? Of course, we all learnt our first letters through them but, more importantly, wasn’t it all those fairytales and moral fables that first got us to start making sense of the things around us? Equating characters with people around them (remember calling your mother “angel”?) was merely an attempt to understand the stories better on our part, but that certainly impelled us to interact with the world. Certain character-types in stories and our eventual judgements of them and their actions influenced our own moral judgements and courses of action in real-life. And they helped us strengthen our own sense of identity.
So, books affected our growing-up years, and their impact has reached an end-point now, some might say. Well, isn’t the world too vast, too complex and too seamless to ever get to an end-point? In that sense, books can never cease to influence, they can only take us deeper. They can only be our eternal guides, because books are literally (pun unintended) immortal.
As our teachers loved to say “we never stop learning”. And books help us learn, they told us that too.