Sunday, 14 October 2012

The Difficulty of Being Good by Gurcharan Das

Title: The Difficulty Of Being Good, On The Subtle Art Of Dharma
Author: Gurcharan Das
Number of Pages: 488
Cover Price: Rs. 699
Rating: 5/5

Get this from (Rs. 524)

Gurcharan Das graduated from Harvard University and was the CEO and then VP for Procter & Gamble India between 1985 and 1992. We worked in various MNCs across different countries. Later he took retirement at around 50 to become a full time writer and started writing columns for various newspapers.

About this Book:

Before writing this book, Gurcharan Das spent around 6 years continuously with 'The Mahabharata'. He studied each character, the problems they faced and tried to map those issues to our present lives.

This book is not just restricted to the story of Mahabharata but also a very good analysis of its each character.

The book is divided into 10 chapters, each corresponding to a different character (Duryodhana, Draupadi, Yudhishtira, Arjuna, Bhishma, Krishna...). In each chapter, he took examples from present world and showed how the incidents happened thousands of years ago are being repeated even in this modern world. Below are some lines from the book:
"Assume, too, that life is a dice game, governed by rules known to be deceptive, in which the least experienced, least adequate player is nevertheless pushed to the point of staking everything he has including, in the end, himself, with the certainty of losing . . .Assume a world in which each of the players in this game must be seen to die in most cases violently and unfairly; in which, moreover, the poles of life and death are present in every move with the death pole always strangely privileged, cognitively and metaphysically, so that death is, in effect, the only possible outcome of the game. In such a world, one mostly fights for time." 
"To save the family, abandon an individual. To save the village,
abandon a family; to save the country, abandon a village. To save
the soul, abandon the earth."
Examples of Ambani brothers co-related with Duryodhana. And later how their mother (like Dhritarashtra) split the family as happened in Mahabharata.
Explanation of the scandal in 2009 by B. Ramalinga Raju is again provided through Mahabharata. How and why should a person of such talent, achievement, who lacked nothing in life, turn to crime?
You will find lots of such examples which helps in distinguishing between right and wrong.

I enjoyed this a lot and would strongly recommend this for everyone. After reading this you will come to know the hard work done behind this and investing Rs 600 would surely return much heavier knowledge... :)

A must read !!

1 comment:

  1. I agree with you. Gurucharan Das has aptly commented on recent events like the Ambani brothers' split and Ramalinga Raju's fraud etc in his book. They do make us think about the real difficulty of remaining 'good" in this 'enlightened' century of unimaginable leaps in technology. Indian has already seen scams and horroundous rapes that makes us think that morality existed only in some era prior to the Age of Kali. But our puranas show that humans remain essentially 'evil', whatever Age or Yuga they lived in.