This book by Vishal Mangalwadi is fabulous, timely, relevant and contemporary reading for Postmodern world. It rightly evaluates the present thought pattern and reminds the origin of original ideas that transformed West made it as the best civilization in the history of humanity. The author rightly says that Christian professors in India and America have very little idea about the importance of the Bible and its contribution for making the modern world. The book has seven parts: The soul of Western civilization; A Personal pilgrimage; The seeds of Western Civilization; The Millennium’s revolution; The Intellectual Revolution; What made the West the Best?: and Globalizing Modernity
Kurt Cobain a rock band singer who created Nirvana committed suicide. The hurt from divorced parents could not be healed by music, fame, money, sex, drugs...etc. He accepted the noble truth of Buddha that life is suffering hence did not have emotional, social, spiritual center that led to his suicide. Many teenagers are committing suicide because of lack of this spiritual anchor. Buddha’s rejection of self appealed to skeptics like Pyrrho of Elea (360-270 BC) who travelled to India and started teaching that nothing is truly knowable. So people stopped paying to philosophers for teaching nothing. This led the decline of education, philosophy and science in Greece. West like ancient Greece is embracing Buddha’s pessimism. If nothingness is ultimate, it cannot do anything positive. So Cobain committed suicide.
A pessimistic religion cannot appreciate music, so did not leave music tradition or instrument, as Buddhist monks goal was silence of their tongues and their thoughts. St. Augustine introduced music in western education and worldview. Since, the essence of music is mathematical numbers; saw scientific basis for music. The longest book in the bible is Psalms. Western musicians assumed that the world is cosmos and not chaos. Benedictine monks built the world’s largest pipe organ in the cathedral of Winchester, England that required seventy men and twenty-six bellows to supply wind to its four hundred pipes; which was most advance machine until the invention of mechanical clock.
The author shares his experience in serving the poor in rural India. The absence of effective law, order, and justice created an idea that it was unwise to be wealthy. They feared robbers and rulers. They dug and hid it in field, wall or floors. Our history was frozen. The author writes: “Dreaming, investing and changing the status quo takes courage; but the courage to melt an ice age does not grow in all cultural climate.” Only astrologers, fortune-tellers, witch doctors, and sorcerers thrive on such glaciers.
The Book That Made Your World: Book Review
By: JN Manokaran
Monday, 20 June 2011, 10:00 (IST)
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