‘Wise and Otherwise’, the title itself speaks volumes about the human race, as does the ‘Haves and Have-nots’. Sudha Murthy, an MTech in Computer Science and the Chairperson of one of the most active social help organizations in India today, Infosys Foundation, started writing her experiences and getting her works published, she has to her credit a total of seven books now, the royalty of which goes to the Foundation itself. There are self help books available today by the dozen giving you steps and points to make your existence worth living. Books such as, “How to make money”, ”How to live life”, ”How to become self reliant”, so on and so forth. I do not wish to discredit the writers, for they must pen these books after much thought, research and experience however after reading a few of these books, I feel they change nothing, the change comes from within, making up one’s mind to try to improve one’s life, by reflecting on the present.
So the other day when I picked up this book, “Wise and Otherwise” it was with a bit of an apprehension as to whether this was just another one of those books that tell you how to lead your life. But fortunately, I found it surprisingly refreshing, like something I have never read before.
For some reason, I felt like I was living the stories that have been penned down, they are so touching and mind blowing. The author has managed through these chapters to convey more about life’s lessons than any self help book could ever do. The short stories are true life episodes of the variety of people that she has come across in her charity work and otherwise and how they react to the vagaries of life. The English is simple; the related episodes are short and to the point. Yet they make a difference. Perhaps this can not be described as a self help book, it’s about how you can help others and in turn make yourself much richer through that fulfilling experience. It was a truly uplifting experience. The author’s reflections on life are worth remembering. I strongly recommend this book to readers who either have an aversion to such books and prefer only fiction or biographies as well as to those who have read their share of the self help category.