Is: A Journey That Will Change Your Life
Author: Sandeep Amar
Publishers: Prabhat Prakashan
Rs 200, Pages: 94
Rajkumari Sharma Tankha
I must confess it was the unusual title of the book that first attracted me to it. But when I first read Is: A Journey That Will Change Your Life by Sandeep Amar the words simply went over my head. I thought it was some philosophy book meant for research scholars. I just didn’t understand it and kept it aside. But the book had caught my attention and gripped it firmly. I just couldn’t ignore it. And the fact that I didn’t understand what the author was trying to convey gnawed me no end. So after about 15 days, I picked it up again. I read and re-read each paragraph, sometimes each para multiple times. And in the end, I must say, my effort was worth it.
The book talks about the core concepts of life. The author has taken care to explain each example through experiences and examples and has also explained the science behind each.
It also tells the reader to find out his/her life objectives and the path to take to fulfill that — the practical way of doing so.
It sure is an educative read for people looking to resolve life issues or the ones looking for conceptual clarity of life concepts and get a real direction in life.
The author has drawn heavily from Charles Darwin, Albert Einstein and Stephen Hawking as well as TV serials to explain various concepts while piecing together the theory of Is, which actually is a philosophy based on science. This means there is nothing abstract as is the case with philosophy and each concept is backed by logic and facts. And if while reading the book you can reflect on various situations in your own life you can understand things in a much better light.
The books is divided into 12 chapters for readers’ convenience, and Amar has given a summary of each chapter at its end. The idea of it all is just one and that is how to have peace and contentment in life and how to avoid unnecessary comparisons with others. In short it tells the oft-repeated comment that each individual is unique and has his/her own life journey.
I will give just two examples here:
The first chapter The Relative and the Absolute explains how nature created different things as absolute though these ‘absolutes’ are a part of the bigger picture, they are a part of the whole. But our thought processes make things ‘relative’ — we look at events happening in our life through the prism of emotions. So absolutes turn into relative.
Chapter 3, The I and The Other, talks about creating a reference frame when faced with struggles. Don’t just look at people more fortunate than you but also at people who are less privileged, it says. Creating a reference point gives the life a sort of continuity and thus brings in some balance too. And the moment this happens, the focus shifts to ‘I’ not the ‘other’.
Now, the rest is for you all to explore. I won’t spoil your experience by giving a synopsis of each chapter.