Why did I pick this book?

Call it the confirmation bias. I like solitude and anyone who can elaborate solitude finds a place in my book shelf.

Also, I liked the author’s End of Absence, which I had written about sometime back.

What do I like about the book?

In a world that encourages you to be connected always, the boons solitude and the banes of not having solitude are elaborated in a nice way.  I vanish at times and when people ask me how can I do that, I have now enough arguments to defend my hoodoo act.

What is one interesting idea that I learned?

I learnt a term called Ludic Loops and could easily relate that to my day to day life.

Ludic loops are short cycles of repeated actions that cater to our id, and to a brute, reptilian desire for play (as opposed to more developed, narrative driven ideas of play that have coherent beginnings and endings). Behavioural psychologists have found that we fall into these miniature, repeating loops of pleasure and are driven to access that pleasure again, again, again, without wondering when it will end. Even the faintest of dopamine hits will work. The discovery of repeating patterns works well—humans are hardwired to enjoy finding patterns


How long would it take?

3-4 hours

Paras or Quotes that I liked

True solitude—as opposed to the failed solitude that we call loneliness—is a fertile state, yet one we have a hard time accessing. Once we do make room for it, though, we discover there are needful things hidden in that empty space, still waiting between the flash and action of our social lives.

Perhaps you can judge the inner health of a land by the capacity of its people to do nothing—to lie abed musing, to amble about aimlessly, to sit having coffee—because whoever can do nothing, letting his thoughts go where they may, must be at peace with himself.

Only in solitude could those youths develop the creative habits—journalling, doodling, daydreaming—that lead to original work.

The solitary reader rehearses the lives of others. And I think that must be the definition of empathy—to rehearse the lives of others

Enjoy Maadi (Have Fun)