Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Rereading the Art of War

One interesting factoid I learned from my high school english teacher is that your personal interpretation, understanding and enjoyment of a book changes with age.

She advised us to revisit the books that we've read after ten or so years and attempt to remember our thoughts and feelings as we were reading the book many years before.

Obviously, the text doesn't change (or at least it shouldn't). What does change is ... well, a lot of things. Intelligence, maturity, state of mind, priorities, perspective and many other things that evolve as you grow older, hopefully wiser and more experienced.

Oh yes, I still have the "Art of War" in my bookshelf and I do revisit its pages once in a while. However, the interpretation and format over at sonshi (click the title above) seems to be much better, at least for me.

The spaces between the phrases is like the pause between refrains. It lets you ponder and relish before you read the next set of words, that will equally be full of meaning.

The direct link (?) to the forums related to each phrase is a thoughtful addition and opens up the text to further discussion and interpretation. It's one thing to read it on your own and another to read it with someone and learn about his views of the text.

I have to credit Guy Kawasaki's recent blog post for the link.