I started reading The Brothers Karamazov

I call it ‘intellectual climbing’

I like reading. Not in the book-eater kind of way but I do spend a big chunk of my day scrolling thru articles, editorials, and blog updates of writers I follow. For the longest time it has kept me abreast and my mind well-oiled. In one of my morning Medium reads, I came across this article by Ryan Holiday:

How To Digest Books Above Your Level and Increase Your Intelligence

TL;DR — It talks about shying away from easy-reads and moving on to reading above your level for continuous intellectual improvement. The complexity of hard-to-read pieces forces you to treat your brain like a muscle, bulking it up by adding more weight and tension than what it already can carry. I, a productivity geek, thought it’s time I’d sign myself up.

One of the books that have always piqued my interest is the gem of Russian literature, The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoyevsky. Freud himself dubbed it as “the most magnificent novel ever written.” It’s got all the themes close to my heart: religion, philosophy, and family. I never dared to crack it open because I knew it was beyond my average brain’s capability to digest and appreciate it in all its merits. And so as an attempt to exceed my intellectual cap, I’m starting off this reading above your level thing with Dostoyevsky’s greatest work (even if it involves me opening the dictionary and the author’s biography every five pages).


My personal copy is a gift from my friend Khal (also a brilliant philosophy major, btw!) This book’s already so scarce here he had to track it down in time for my birthday. ⭐️