Sunday, October 30, 2005


This journal documents an approach to reading "important" books on a schedule determined by occult numerology. Two readers will record their impressions reading 9 books over 6 months, or one book every 3 weeks. We will begin on November 11, 2005 after we have put aside our current reading projects. This project was inspired by an article in Good Ideas Magazine, Issue No. 1, November 2005, reproduced below. Our particular instantiation of this idea will be revealed in a subsequent post. If you like this journal, we encourage you to do something similar so that we can read it.

Requirements A reading partner; a library card; a web journal.
Duration 6 months.

1. Together with your reading partner, brainstorm a list of 36 books you consider important to have read: 24 shall be books neither has read; 6 shall be books you have read but the other has not; 6 shall be books the other has read but you have not.

2. Each reader decides on 3 books to read of the 6 prescribed to her/him and in what order.

3. Of the 24 books neither has read, create a shorter list of books either reader would consider to be members of the set "Top 5 Books to Read."

4. Divide this new list into fiction and non-fiction. Each reader chooses one book from the fiction list that both shall read. Both readers then discuss and come to an agreement on one non-fiction book that both shall read. The second non-fiction book shall be decided by coin toss after all non-fiction books of the same scope (i.e. broad survey or narrow focus) have been struck from the list.

5. Decide on a genre or tradition both readers are unfamiliar with but consider important. Each person will read one book of his/her choosing from this category.

6. Discuss the remaining 20 books neither party has read and eliminate all but 8. Choose which one book both shall read by flipping a coin 3 times.

7. Decide on a starting and ending book and a reading schedule. The editors recommend 3 weeks per book -- long enough to get through most books, short enough to ensure you still have time to apply all the wisdom contained therein. The occult significance of this schedule is described by the formula below.

3 weeks/book X 9 books = 6 months