FRIDAY REVIEW

Ahead of his times

Book writing is no longer the preserve of the professional, the well-known and the scholars. The unknown and the little known too are emerging as authors. There is a suspicion that some are taking to writing to become known, going by the boom in book production in all languages.

The author of the book The Freedom for Human Kingdom by S. Gulzar Ahmed (priced at Rs. 300), who is yet to make a mark is one such. Plodding through the 232-page text he has presented, one gets the impression that the author, who was a preacher, has brought out the book to give vent to his own personal disenchantment with the world around him. His way of heralding his coming in the realm of writing is to show himself as an iconoclast and a non-comformist, uncommon for a person of his calling. Nevertheless, one has to admire his courage in presenting unconventional views.

Typical of his disdain for society are the following lines: "The society in which we live today is at least 5,000 years old, its living styles are 5,000 years old, its views 5,000 years old, its thinking 5,000 years old. We are just 50 years old. Can we go with the society which is 5,000-years-old?" The answer is no, never. It is not possible for us.

Giving a call to raise against the "stinking traditionalism", the author also attacks the institution of marriage and says in the fresh society, there would also be no marriage in which husband and wife become slaves of each other. The "prison of marriage" is the most unnatural thing to happen for mankind. Similar is the refrain as the author runs amok in page after page.

Blaming the past, the author says: "Our forefathers have divided one mankind and the one humanity into many parts". They divided people into different religions making the respective adherent claim his or religion's superiority over the others. Preaching freedom for human kingdom, the author has spared none, be it even God almighty. May be he is far ahead of our times! The author could have avoided repetitive ideas and compressed his book to a compact volume. The printing as is generally the case is of good quality, though the same cannot be said about the English as what the author preaches is not liberalism but libertinism.

A. JAYARAM