Wouldn’t you know it, a full day has passed and I’m still reading Dune.
It’s possible to forget what you read specifically but take the contents’ spirit with you. I find that this book has a ton of detail strewn all over it, much that I find interesting but know I won’t remember in full accuracy. The idea, though, if worth remembering, the core, will make an impact and be remembered. This also preserves the pleasure of repeat readings! I come back and find a whole new experience even though I know the end. The journey itself is still blessed with unexpected discoveries, realizations, forgotten secrets. I went my whole first reading of this one in particular without even once understanding the political structure. That knowledge brings a whole new context to the reading, changes the whole experience.
I guess I owe it to the reader to continue this string: Why is it that things made less-removed from nature are more appealing to us than their digital/synthetic counterparts?
One compelling fact is that the physical (let’s continue with books for the moment) can be passed down, shared, kept for centuries sometimes. That historical connection is something that can’t be made up. I can imagine, after reading The Epic of Gilgamesh, how the anthropologists(?) felt when they first translated the tablets and realized how timeless the lessons taught in that story are. To touch and interact with the same block of matter that those peoples of Uruk did some five millenia ago and to understand its meaning; by god, that’s almost as good as a handshake.
I’m getting dramatic, I guess. Sun Tzu didn’t personally write my copy of The Art of War, The Who didn’t per se hand make my Who’s Next vinyl, but that physicality, it just seems to feel more authentic, somehow. It is, just like its digital counterpart, a counterfeit. I just can’t shake that feeling of value, richness, though. Haven’t figured it out.