Reading Comprehension Practice Set - 1

Mentor for Bank Exams
Directions (1 – 15): Read the following passages carefully and answer the questions given below them. Certain words are given in bold to help you to locate them while answering some of the questions.
The happy man is the man who lives objectively, who has free affections and wide interests, who secures his happiness through these interests and affections and through the fact that they in turn make him an object of interest and affection to many others. To be the recipient of affection is a potent cause of happiness, but the man who demands affection is not the man upon whom it is bestowed. The man who receives affection is, speaking broadly, the man who gives it. But it is useless to attempt to give it as a calculation, in the way in which one might lend money at interest, for a calculated affection is not genuine and is not felt to be so by the recipient.
What then can a man do who is unhappy because he is encased in self? So long as he continues to think about the causes of his unhappiness, he continues to be self-centered and therefore does not get outside it. It must be by genuine interest, not by simulated interests adopted merely as a medicine. Although this difficulty is real, there is nevertheless much that he can do if he has rightly diagnosed his trouble. If for example, his trouble is due to a sense of sin, conscious or unconscious, he can first persuade his conscious mind that he has no reason to feel sinful, and then proceed, to plant this rational conviction in his unconscious mind, concerning himself meanwhile with some more or less neutral activity. If he succeeds in dispelling the sense of sin, it is possible that genuine objective interests will arise spontaneously. If his trouble is self-pity, he can deal with it in the same manner after first persuading himself that there is nothing extraordinarily unfortunate in his circumstances. 
If fear is his trouble, let him practise exercises designed to give courage. Courage has been recognized from time immemorial as an important virtue, and a great part of the training of boys and young men has been devoted to producing a type of character capable of fearlessness in battle. But moral courage and intellectual courage have been much less studied. They also, however, have their technique. Admit to yourself every day at least one painful truth, you will find it quite useful. Teach yourself to feel that life would still be worth living even if you were not, as of course you are, immeasurably superior to all your friends in virtue and in intelligence. Exercises of this sort prolonged through several years will at last enable you to admit facts without flinching and will, in so doing, free you from the empire of fear over a very large field.
1. According to the passage, calculated affection
1) appears to be false and fabricated
2) makes other person to love you
3) turns into permanent affection over a period of time
4) leads to self-pity
5) gives a feeling of courage
2. Who according to the passage is the happy man?
1) Who is encased in self
2) Who has free affection and wide interests
3) Who is free from worldly passions
4) Who has externally centred passions
5) None of these
3. Which of the following statements is NOT TRUE in the context of the passage?
1) The happy man has wide interests.
2) Courage has been recognised as an important virtue.
3) Unhappy man is encased in self.
4) A man who suffers from the sense of sin must tell himself that he has no reason to be sinful.
5) Issue of intellectual courage has been extensively studied.
4. Which of the following virtues, according to the passage, has been recognised for long as an important virtue?
1) Patriotism
2) Sacrifice
3) Courage
4) Self-consciousness
5) None of these
5. Which of the following words is SIMILAR in meaning of the word ‘bestowed’ as used in the passage?
1) Conferred
2) Accommodated
3) Trusted
4) Withdrawn
5) Directed
6. Which of the following, according to the passage, has not been studied much?
1) Feeling of guilt and self-pity
2) The state of mind of an unhappy man
3) How to get absorbed in other interests
4) Moral and intellectual courage
5) None of these
7. What should a man do who is suffering from the feeling of self-pity?
1) He should control his passions and emotions.
2) He should persuade himself that everything is alright in his circumstances.
3) He should seek affection from others.
4) He should develop a feeling of fearlessness.
5) He should consult an expert to diagnose his trouble.
8. What happens to a man who demands affection?
1) His feelings are reciprocated by others.
2) He tends to take a calculated risk.
3) He becomes a victim of a vicious circle.
4) He takes affection for granted from others.
5) None of these
9. If a man is suffering from a sense of sin,
1) he should invite opinion of others
2) he should admit his sin at once
3) he should consciously realize that he has no reason to feel sinful
4) he should develop a fearless character
5) he should develop an internal focus of control
10. Which of the following statements is TRUE in the context of the passage?
1) All passions stem from unhappiness.
2) The happy man lives subjectively.
3) Any virtue has a dark side also.
4) One feels happy if one receives affection.
5) Any affection is always genuine.
11. Which of the following statements is SIMILAR in meaning to the word ‘flinching’ as used in the passage?
1) wincing
2) convincing  
3) explaining
4) providing
5) debating
12. How can one get out of the vicious circle mentioned in the passage?
1) By practising skills of concentration
2) By inculcating the habit of self-absorption
3) Being true to others and one’s internal circumstances
4) Admitting to oneself that others could be right
5) None of these
13. Which of the following words is OPPOSITE in meaning of the word ‘dispelling’ as used in the passage?
1) giving
2) accumulating
3) projecting
4) scattering
5) receiving
14. What according to the passage is the real cause of happiness?
1) Material rewards and incentives received
2) Critical analysis of the happy state of mind
3) Affection received from others
4) Calculated risk taken
5) None of these
15. What happens when you think about the cause of your unhappiness?
1) You try to introspect and look critically at yourself.
2) You realize that life can be lived in different ways.
3) You try to practice exercise designed to give coverage.
4) You remain a self-centered person.
5) None of these
Answers:
1. A)   2. B)    3. E)    4. C)
5. A) The meaning of the word ‘bestow’ as mentioned in the passage is ‘to present something as a gift to somebody’. Hence the words ‘bestowed’ and ‘conferred’ are synonymous.
6. D)   7. B)   8. C)   9. C)   10. D)
11. A) The meaning of the word ‘flinch’ as mentioned in the passage is ‘to make a sudden automatic movement because of pain, fear or shock’. Out of the given words, meaning of the word ‘wince’ is ‘to show pain, distress or embarrassment by a slight movement of the muscles in the face’. Hence the word ‘flinching’ and ‘wincing’ are synonymous.
12. C)
13. B) The meaning of the word ‘dispel’ as mentioned in the passage is ‘to make something go away’. Hence the word ‘dispelling’ and ‘accumulating’ are antonymous.
14. C)   15. D)
Difficult Words to Remember
Potent = convincing; having great power
Bestow = to present something as a gift to somebody
Encase = to surround or cover something closely, especially in order to protect it.
Simulated = artificial, but made to look, feel etc like the real thing.
Merely = only; simply
Nevertheless= in spite of something; however; still
Persuade = to convince somebody
Conviction = a firm opinion or belief; the appearance of being sincere, firmly believed or truly meant
Dispell = to make something go away
Immemorial = of or from a time so long ago that no one can remember it; ancient
Prolong = to make something last longer; to extend something
Flinching = making a sudden automatic movement because of pain, fear or shock
Wincing = showing pain, distress or embarrassment by a slight movement of the muscles in the face.
To inculcate = to fix ideas, principles, etc firmly in somebody’s mind especially by often repeating them
Reciprocate = to give and receive something in return; to make a mutual exchange of something
Vicious circle = a continuing situation in which one problem or need leads to another and the new problem makes the first problem worse.