Health is healthy (probably rich these days). It’s running for miles and not feeling like you can’t do it anymore. It’s eating food and not getting sick. For most of us, if our health is to be healthy, we had better do something about it, whether it’s consulting a doctor or opening the Google search box. But what the hell is literature doing with the word healthy in the title of this article?
There are, of course, many other official metrics that tell us exactly what it is to be healthy. Being healthy is essential these days, and should be. We are humans and we need to take care of ourselves. From dawn to dusk, we are meant to do things that make and keep us healthy. Physical, social and mental health should be considered as parameters of good health. But do we take care of all that?
You are sick if you don’t know how to think. If your human body has a little mess in its digestive tract, you feel that your body is not clean…you definitely want to throw things away and consider them waste. What about the waste in your mind and soul? You can’t eat a pill that cleanses your mind and soul. If you have a mind but don’t think, you are certainly not healthy at all. Literature creates a link between mind and body, like a tablet. To sanitize your soul, no alcohol-based sanitizer will work, but literature can become that sanitizer.
The curiosity in you increases when you read a book. From my experience somewhere reading a book you know it is going to heal you at some point. There’s a reason people say what they say, and many scholars have told us to read as much as possible. It is to help us know how many lies there are in the world and how many truths. In addition to the well-known definition of literature, I will add: “Literature is any thought-provoking form of written or spoken art…even offensive. If you don’t know what is bad and how to make it good, you cannot be healthy.
The world itself is literature that we fail to read. From reading something to questioning it, accepting something to letting go, literature (or whatever makes you think) is a way to understand, to heal, and to keep us healthy, both in the body and in the soul.
The writer is a 10th standard student and hails from Anantnag. [email protected]