Adrian Fort’s original idea for the secular holiday was for people to give their friends copies of great books to nurture a robust intellectual life (and for contrast against the people who believe in the “one book, no fun” religions).
Books help to connect us with the entirety of human experience across vast spans of time. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed philosophical works from as early as 4,200 years ago from Ancient Egypt (the Maxims of Ptahhotep, or Bika Reed’s intriguing commentary and translation of the Dialogue Between a Man and his Destiny), science fiction from as early as the second century of CE (Lucian‘s The True Story), AC Grayling’s The Good Book: a Humanist Bible and, of course, Epicurus’ Principal Doctrines, or Philodemus’ scrolls from Herculaneum.
Speaking of secular holidays, I must not neglect to mention upcoming Openly Secular Day in April 23, a day when we pledge to “tell one person” at least. Openly Secular is an organization dedicated to making the world safer and friendlier for non-religious people in view of the fact that atheists (in spite of their rising numbers) are the most hated group in America.