I'm finally getting around to responding to the question posed by a comment on a previous post: can the accumulation of knowledge become as poisonous as the accumulation of material objects? Some thoughtful comments have already been made on the question--check them out here.
My own take is this: as a grad student, I am quite tired of accumulating knowledge, particularly over a short period of time for the purposes of passing an exam. What I really want to get out of reading a book is not so much knowledge, as it is an experience. For me, the wonder of books is that they can allow you to take up second-hand the kind of experiences that change people.
And since I do believe there is such a thing as the self, and I do want my self to become something more beautiful, loving and good than it is, I don't see how I can go wrong reading books that will help that process along by giving the kind of soul-expanding experiences I value.
But perhaps for someone who does not believe in the ultimate reality of the self, and who desires the extinction of the self, even that kind of thing might be dangerous(?).
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