In an enthralling world of multitudinous self-help books, ‘The Rudest Book Ever’ by Shwetabh Gangwar is one of its kind. The author who is an infamous Youtuber, a philosophy thinker, and a professional problem solver, himself discerns his book as not a self-help one. Instead, it is an opus of perspectives and paradigms capable of making us unlearn, learn and relearn things about one’s own self. Possessing a charged tone and a punchy persona, the book holds an uncanny magical power to get young readers to ponder over various aspects of their lives from a vantage point that is both new-fangled and logical.
Hitting the basics of life with impeccable usage of sarcasm and witty humour, the curt book smacks the readers in the face and meanwhile also drops striking nuggets of wisdom. This bold and unique writing style is what makes Gangwar’s narrative likable to read. The words keep one hooked, for they project images that very much appear as reflections of one’s own quotidian thoughts, notions, sentiments, and deep-rooted insecurities.
At a time when youngsters are all fettered by fallacious social conditioning, tutored beliefs, and coached values as preached and propagated by their parents, peers, and society, the book advances itself in the form of a trustful companion and a guiding light amidst all the psychological haywire. The young generation, stuck in a messy web of entangled thoughts almost every day, has sadly forgotten how to think. It is so because they are only taught ‘what’ to think and, this is precisely what the book strives to undo.
It successfully teaches readers ‘how’ to think, taking them on a fulfilling journey of self-awareness. Revolving around different domains of life briefly and pragmatically, the ‘rude’ book irrefutably makes for a sublime investment of time and energy.
In the process of providing several mind-boggling perspectives to deal with things of everyday importance ranging from knowledge, ego, happiness, satisfaction, rejections, success, failure, friendships, relationships to the futile exercise of comparison, approval-seeking behaviour, people in general, hero-worshipping, people-pleasing, admiration and following, self-identity, self-worth, social media, etc., it also gives an insight into the problematic mindset of our society.
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Since the book is a culmination of the writer’s perspectives, it is not based on experiential learning. Thereby, there are no findings, surveys, or research to support the content. Nevertheless, it is definitely backed by true occurrences in the Indian society and its functioning that it clears up numerous layers that the society has blindfolded us with. One of the numerous ideas that personally struck me and has stayed with me relates to an analogy that the author draws between an individual (i.e., us) and a nation. It somehow caused a paradigm shift, impelling me to reclaim the remote control of my life that was passed to everyone but me.
Thus, the book is indubitably a great attempt at revoking the hoary, hard and faulty wiring. It possesses the powerful property of altering the focus and power of our lens with which we view our inner selves and the world.
Dealing tactfully with modern-day issues faced by youngsters in the digital age, the book like an unbiased mirror brings them one on one with the unattended or unthought harsh reality of their lives. Being a fascinating eye-opener, it is a must-read for all folks constituting the country’s young demographic before they get trapped into a deleterious loop of false beliefs and self-deprecating thoughts.
Written by- Aakriti Sanghi
Edited by- Nanditha Menon