My Current Reading List has some interesting themes. The last three books I read are: What is the What by Dave Eggers, Agent Zig Zag by Ben MacIntyre, and Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson and David Oliver Relin.
The main themes that I gleaned were: Natural Resources, Fanaticism and Humanity. And why should I write about this and anyone care – well – it’s because I think these themes will continue to have an impact on us. Fanatics will always seek power and try to dominate whether it’s Hilter, Osama bin Laden, Elliot Spitzer or any fundamentalist sect. The fight for natural resources for one’s national security will always dominate the national agenda. And the heart warming part of this is that humanity and goodness find a way to prevail.
What is the What is a novel about the lost boys of the Sudan and one boy’s recollection of the horrors of being a refugee. Imagine the peace loving Dinkas being ousted by the oil grabbing Muslims; imagine witnessing your village annihilated and then living in a tent city for 10 years and surviving to want to return to build schools and educate. WOW!!
Agent Zig Zag is about a real double agent British spy during WW II. He was a crook with a heart. He helped the British collect information about the Germans and through it all he developed a father-son-like relationship with one of his German handlers. Despite all the horrors, Zig Zag still had compassion and saw the humanity in this one German.
And my absolute favorite, Three Cups of Tea is just plain inspiring. An American building schools in tribal, Muslim Northern Pakistan pre and post 9/11. Greg Mortenson elevates the notion of unbiased education to new heights and against all odds raises money to build schools to help many tribal villages learn about modern life. It is his belief and the belief of many of the tribal elders that education can fight the Taliban and fanaticism. I can go on and on…you must read this book to fully embrace all three themes.
For me, I am inspired to appreciate the good that is all around me, to shun fanatics and to explore ways to educate and promote tolerance.