Good Advice for the Book Collector

This is an inscription made by Karl Barth inside of someone’s book.  It is good advice for the book worm/collector (like me):


For those who don’t read “scribble”:

Meaning of Life?

Collecting Books?  No, read them!

Reading books? No, think about!

Thinking about? No, do something for God and for your neighbor!

Karl Barth, Basel, 2-11-1954

(HT: F&T)


4 responses to “Good Advice for the Book Collector

  1. very cool. thanks. nice thoughts on the gospel genre entry also. I tend to think there are also many embedded genres there — parables, allegories, etc.

  2. Karl Barth was very wise. It is so easy to be involved with books that we forget the most important thing in life: God.

    Claude Mariottini

  3. What a fabulous find!
    By the way, we are looking forward to your “First Lecture.”
    Also, maybe the sad truth is that it’s contagious, but I’ve started another blog, on Theological German at

  4. Alterman,

    Your new blog looks to be a good one. I’m pleased to see that you have joined the world of blogging. I’m really not sure why you haven’t written more. From what I’ve read from your first blog, you really have a gift for written communication. I hope that we will see some orignial works (e.g. books) of yours in the near future.

    Aaron Slemp

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