Saturday, April 02, 2005

Obscure challenges

Sometimes, a fervour comes upon me to learn something. Unfortunately, my learning sprees rarely distinguish between useful and unuseful knowledge. Suddenly I stay up late reading, browsing, searching, scribbling etc. till finally I leave it there. Quite often it is a language but can really be anything, nobel prize winners, chemistry, a musicians work, a philosophy.

Recently, I read Nobel Prize for Literature winners (triggered by Who wants to be a Millionaire), solipsism and Descartes (as a result of my interest in existentialism), Arabic (triggered by getting a book on Islam), zoological classifications (as a result of a visit to the various museums) etc.

Last night's project was learning Biblical Hebrew, triggered by my reading of the Bible, and also the fact that a theology-studying workmate was a bit unsure whether he should be expending that effort. I now know the whole hebrew alephbet (interestingly, the Greek, Arabic, Latin and Hebrew alphabets come from a similar root). I can read the very first sentence in Genesis and even understand the grammar).

Damn, just writing that triggered me to re-learn the Greek alphabet. Oh and now the Arabic... Maybe that is the problem with a language passion, it is never-ending.

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