Book Name: The Calling – Unleash Your True Self
Author: Priya Kumar
Publisher: Books That Inspire
The Calling is a spiritual adventure. It is an encounter with the truth, the wisdom and the force that is innate to us all. At the brink of a divorce and personal breakdown, Arjun took a trip into the heart of the Himalayas, on the insistence of a sadhu, who predicted that the journey up to Hemkund Sahib would align him to his purpose and change his life forever. At every turn, the mountains hold secrets and tests that urge Arjun to evolve into the person he had denied to be – himself. Pretences, falsities, confusions and untruths fall apart as Arjun is forced to confront the mess he had created in his life. What started off as an opportunity to escape reality, turned out to be an opportunity to escape from the dwindling spiral of self-created misery. Filled with spiritual insights and sprinkled with light humour, this story will help you find your calling, your voice and who knows, even your true self.
Let me tell you something about this book before I proceed with my review. The Calling is my first motivational read. I was actually laughing at myself when I realised it’s a motivational book, because what 20-year-old guy needs motivation already? was the first thought but trust me when I say, You’d really find your calling if you go past the first few pages of this book. You’d never really regret reading it till the end. It is a gem – almost a boon – to all those souls who are in desperate need of something motivational to read. But, if you are going to give this book a miss, either you must already be on the right path in your life or you’re just ignorant of something that holds the true power to unleash your inner self. A person from Priya Kumar’s Training Systems personally approached me for a review and so here it is.
This story is about Arjun – a depressed individual whose personal and professional life has taken a tumultuous turn. It is then that he meets with an accident that changes his life forever. Immediately after the accident, he meets a sadhu who advises him to take a journey to Hemkund Sahib- a pilgrimage site- located in The Himalayas. However, Arjun isn’t aware that this journey would provide him with pearls of wisdom, knowledge, truth and finally himself. He is accompanied by a witty, humorous and an enlightened individual Chandu, who actually disguises his true self and acts as a transporter. Though Arjun finds him irritating throughout, the revelation about his true identity is a major blow to him at the end. He finds his lost self among the mountains, to the highest point where every soul’s life is cleansed of their past mistakes and renewed energy flows through. Chandu’s words, ‘These mountains look still, sahib, but they are not. They move, they are alive, they speak, they share your soul’, sow the seeds of motivation in Arjun’s mind.
The most interesting part of the story is the various tests which the sadhu subjects Arjun to. These tests not only awaken Arjun, but also the readers. We get to read wisdom that would never be taught to you if you hadn’t picked up this book. A few of them are as follows-
‘To sit in your space and your world and do nothing in it is a disgrace to the intelligence that you are bestowed with. It is a disgrace to the spiritual force that is inherent to you. Your role in the world is to take charge, to take responsibility for your role in your environment and of what happens in it.’
Yes, that’s true, right? The space in which you live is your responsibility. You must take care of your own world and prevent it from falling to pieces. Your environment is your responsibility and you must surely do something about it.
Of all these lessons which we learn, the last one is the most enlightening.
‘Let the world change, but don’t let your state of positivity change. Let the world change, but don’t let your state of certainty change to doubt because you don’t like that change. Let the whole world change, but don’t let your happiness change in accordance with the apparent despair the world projects onto you.’
Well, the book is completely filled with such wisdom. Everyone would find something for them in it. I am sure that you’d truly find your calling when you finish reading it, and ponder upon the wisdom instilled in you by the book. The characters are so neatly presented that they never deviate from the essence of the plot. And there are some quotes which I personally liked. For example, Priya Kumar’s precious words on friendship,
‘Friends are supposed to help you restore your belief and confidence so that you can solve your own problems. They are supposed to listen to your problems without interrupting to give you solutions, so you can talk yourself out of them. Friendship means allowance; it means granting you space if you need it without intruding to give you advice.’
Overall, The Calling – Unleash Your True Self is like a cross between The Alchemist and The Secret. Some books are meant to be chewed and swallowed. This book by Priya Kumar is one such!
A final quote for all of you,
‘Regret is to live like termite is to wood. It will eat you up. Confusion is to live like a parasite is to its host. It will consume you. Don’t continue selling your life and your soul to the highest bidder. For when you do, with that, you sell your family, your dreams and your purpose.’