Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Total Number of Books I Own/ Have Owned: I probably own 300 currently, which doesn't sound like a lot except that I move a lot and like to move them with me. Sadly, here in NY I only have a couple dozen. The total I've owned is probably around 1,000, I've been pretty good about selling them.

Last Book I Bought:

Three actually:
Happiness and Contemplation by Josef Peiper
Christian State in Life by Adrienne von Speyr
American Prometheus: the Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer by Kai Bird and Martin J. Sherwin
Books I'm Reading Now:
American Prometheus and Relativity by Einstein

Five Books That Have Meant A Lot to Me:

I can't limit myself to five.

Catholicism and Fundamentalism by Karl Keating
The 1662 Book of Common Prayer (substantially by Cramner)
The Book of Lights by Chiam Potok
Orthodoxy by G.K. Chesterton
The Summa Theologica of St. Thomas Aquinas (and the Summa Contra Gentiles as well, but for a completely different reason)
On Free Choice of the Will by St. Augustine (though that was probably just a matter of timing)
The Roman Missal
The Rule of St. Benedict (guess who wrote that)

I find that there's a group of historical fiction/non-fiction that's important to me, informed by my ancestry and personal history:

The Killer Angels (the Civil War) by Michael Shaara
The Caine Mutiny, The Winds of War, and War and Rememberance (World War Two and the Holocaust) all by Herman Wouk
The Headmaster by John McPhee
Trinity by Leon Uris (though another novel or a straight history of Ireland could probably stand in here just as easily)
Good-Bye To All That by Robert Graves

Tag Five Other Bloggers to Do This - If they Wish
I don't know five bloggers...

It's interesting, but while I love books, my religion, politics, etc. have been influenced very much by other things. Beyond my upbringing, intellectual epiphanies were largely shaped by a radio show Catholic Answers Live (which I always listened to over the internet and have never actually heard on the radio) and my politics were shaped by reading The Freeman and as I think about it, the Wall Street Journal. Though religious and political books solidified the things I learned there. In becoming a philosopher, being taught to philosophize was more important than reading philosophy.

This was interestingly hopeful in another way, thinking about books and other places that I've learned from makes me realize how much I've learned and grown in understanding even relatively recently. Makes me more hopeful about the future of the enterprise.

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