There are various ways in which pleasures may be derived. It may be the pleasures of eating delicious food, listening to music that is to your taste, sitting in the cool shade of a tree and enjoying the beauty of nature, inhaling the perfume of flowers or simply delighting in the soft touch of petals. These, basically, are pleasures of the senses.

Reading, however, is an intellectual pleasure and should be nurtured from an early age. Learning the truths of science or watching a good drama is also a form of intellectual pleasure. Intellectual pleasures are the least harmful and so the wise person does not care for the pleasures of the senses.

The cheapest and easiest form of intellectual pleasure is reading. There are various elements that make reading a pleasure. The reader may appreciate the style of the author, the language skills used in expressing ideas. The arrangement of ideas, the logical sequence of thoughts or the thoughts themselves may be appealing. All these may be combined in what is today known as “Best Sellers!”

The pleasures of reading are truly inexhaustible as there are a variety of books to cater to the needs of the reader in the form of essays, novels, dramas, sagas, poems and speeches. A person may take delight in reading again and again descriptive passages in Macaulay’s essays. It might be the pleasures of another to read the poems of Shelley and Wordsworth.

The sages of old recommend that whenever you feel dejected, depressed, and under the weather, get into the company of great authors and read their books. Books can be your never failing friends as they can never get you into trouble.

Reading, however, can become a mere indulgence if it goes to the extent that it interferes with one’s proper work. Then it is as bad as any sensual pleasure. It is known that some people waste their time in reading “catchpenny” novels, so a taste for good reading must be properly formed.

Reading improves your vocabulary. Reading gives you an insight into the diversity of ethnicity of people, their customs, their lifestyles etc. You become more aware about the different places and the code of conduct in those places. It enhances your imagination power.

The more you read, the more knowledgeable you become. With more knowledge comes more confidence. More confidence builds self-esteem. So it’s a chain reaction. Since you are so well read, people look to you for answers. Your feelings about yourself can only get better.

Reading allows us to gain understanding of different experiences and points of view from other cultures and times in history, creating appreciation for the variety of possibilities in life and opening opportunities for new adventures and creations.

Reading widens your horizon of information. You’ll always have something to talk about. You can discuss various plots in the novels you read, you can discuss the stuff you are learning in the business books you are reading as well. The possibilities of sharing become endless.

Reading, helps you stretch your memory muscles in a similar way. Reading requires remembering details, facts and figures and in literature, plot lines, themes and characters.

The benefits of reading are countless. Reading always has a positive impact on our lives. So go, grab a book or newspaper and start reading.

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.