Friday, February 16, 2007

Robinson Crusoe

I just finished reading Robinson Crusoe for the first time - another classic that I apparantly ignored during my formative years. Of course I knew the general story already - man gets stranded on a deserted island and struggles to survive.

A couple of things I didn't realize:

  • He's stranded for about 30 years! Some of the things he accomplishes on the island are incredible, but when you realize the amount of time he spends there (and really what else is he going to do) it becomes more plausible.
  • How religious the book is. One of the items Robinson Crusoe rescues from the shipwreck is a bible, and though he was not religious prior to his predicament he becomes 're-born' on the island and actually converts a cannibal he rescues to Christianity as well.
One idea espoused in the book is one of optimism. If you constantly compare yourself or your situation to those in a better situation, a feeling of jealousy and inadequacy is a natural (although undesirable) response. Instead, look on your situation as compared to those less fortuante and you will likely find yourself in a positive frame of mind. Furthermore, if you think about the number of people in each of those two camps (better off and worse off), you are almost guaranteed to find yourself better off than the majority.

3 comments:

Kimota94 aka Matt said...

I admire your ambition of reading some of the classics that you'd missed earlier in life. Tammy was doing something similar for awhile (she might still be, for that matter) and it introduced her to some great novels.

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