Aelred of Rievaulx, in his Rule of Life for a Recluse, laments that some anchorites like gossiping:

… their purpose no longer to being to arouse desire but to gratify it.

I think that is also true for a lot of reading in a modern context. People read all the time – online, on their phones, emails, etc. In a sense, anchorite solitude is all about space to read. But read well! Reading to “arouse desire” for Jesus. Not reading to pass the time or “gratify” a base desire. Reading to move closer to Jesus.

I think people of faith should make more time for reading to arouse desire. Not just the Scriptures or the Prayer Book – both of which should be a very important part of every day. Lectio Divina should become a part of every Christians’ day.

Also good Christian books. Our tradition is overflowing with good reading material for which a whole lifetime would not be enough to read. Guided reading – with a spiritual guide – would be a magnificent place for people to feed their spiritual life.

Sorry if that is a little preachy.

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