Book Reviews

Amma's Gospel - Of Wisdom and Benediction

Amma’s Gospel by Rajender Krishan
Setu Publication, Pittsburgh, USA 168 Pages
Paperback ISBN-13 : 978-1-947403116 Amazon ebook ASIN : B08LSYFLN4
Available on Amazon USA | Amazon India and other global Amazon websites


Certain life-forms never perish!

They continue to speak to their seekers across the intervening thick veil of time and space; solidity of the physicality and after-stage; a disembodied voice heard distinctly from some deep place; a being of other dimensionalities, locations, realms telecommunicating from another medium - the other side of living, this time, as transformed energies of another type.

Rajender Krishan, a successful New York-based Indian-American, faced with the existential dilemmas, seeks out his Amma ji who, according to his candid confession elsewhere in this great collection of poems, continues to guide him in her own grandmotherly way from the great beyond.

Now the poet in him wishes to share the gained insights with readers of a new-millennium world grappling with the harsh political realities and truths that can be very unsettling for the believers of ethics and liberal democracy as framing narratives of the civilizational functionality and progress. Even otherwise, many challenges come up during a short human journey on the terra firma - and when existing frameworks fail to enthuse and guide the daily conduct of society and individual, answers are sought to the same by a mind trying for solace and resolution.

This illustrated book of heart-felt moments of queries provides some answers in a lyrical form that has got its own flow, pace and internal rhythm. Mini gems. Nuggets of inspiring words from a man rooted in his heritage and inclined towards spiritual aspects of the phenomena, exploration of every side of the lived experience.

Rajender Krishan is free of academic paraphernalia - of the heavy burden of theories and schools - and comes across as a refreshing voice in an age of the FB poetry where, sadly, anything goes unlegislated, in the name of free verse and blank poetry - words strung together, at their best, and eminently forgettable, like a viral video, tweet and Instagram image. Perhaps, it is designed for that only.

RK’s offerings are deceptively simple in such a landscape - but, in reality, very profound!

His poetry challenges collective amnesia imposed by a media society that tries to dumb down culture and its expression through art.

Here, certain deep truths are discussed with the ease of a Zen artist.

Take a look, please, at this observation by a grandmother in blissful mood:

In between the heartbeats
           incarnating birth and death
is the tiny space
encapsulating the cosmos
where Life lives majestically
in myriad forms and impulses

Life is in the Now
of cause and effect
Not in the past nor in the future

Be Silent and Listen
To what Life wants to say
Meditate on the experience
Get not attached
Simply immerse
Become the Witness

Amma’s Gospel is full of startling comments about mysteries of life, death, cessation, rebirth of different kinds…and of charged words that have got a strange luminosity of their own through interaction with Holy Scriptures and point to a rightful conduct.

After reading these poems, the reader feels fulfilled, elevated and revived!

And that is the primary task of any philosophy and art - change to a higher form of cognition.

It is epistemological poetics in its basic impact and overall affect administered subtly on the recipient consciousness - a poetry that guides as a treasure trove of wisdom and divine benediction.

Poetry and philosophy; morality and aesthetics crossed.

It is life talking to you through a wise woman and a respectful listener in a remembering/seeking mode, of a presence in an absence, capturing the fleet-footed moments, dialogues, in verse - words spring forth like a new spring from an aching heart.

Of memories and their enduring relevance.
Of past in the present; present in the past.
Of seeking a guru - and getting the right answers.
Of a grandmother, dead/living:

Her deep eyes talk
conveying much to hear
whenever I see her fading
sepia image from years ago

I simply strive to decipher
and then try finding words
to articulate what is heard
in the serenity of her silence

Read - and get enlightened!

It is sheer meditation!

More on Amma's Gospel


More by :  Dr. Sunil Sharma

Top | Book Reviews

Views: 3466      Comments: 5

Comment Quite perceptive review Dr Sunil Sharma sir.I was following the trajectory during the publication of these poems. Rajender Kishen ji's poetic font was energetically evolving, spontaneity being the distinguishing mark.A befitting and elevating review sir, for a well deserving work of art.Sublimity at its best.regards.

T.S.Chandra Mouli
30-Oct-2020 12:23 PM

Comment Thanks dear poets Padmaja Iyengar-Paddy and Hema Ravi for your kind words.
Take care.

Sunil Sharma
28-Oct-2020 01:47 AM

Comment A really scholarly review written by Dr. Sunil Sharma.

Yes. I have gone through many of the series of poems penned by Rajinder Kishenji on 'Amma'. Here, Dr. Sharma makes a beautiful picture of the entire collection. The sentence 'Nuggets of inspiring words from a man rooted in his heritage and inclined towards spiritual aspects of the phenomena, exploration of every side of the lived experience.' summarizes the valuable content of the book. Great reading !

G Swaminathan
27-Oct-2020 21:12 PM

Comment An excellent and in depth review by the venerable Dr Sunil Sharma ji of "Amma's Gospel" written by a venerable poet Rajinder Krishanji! "Amma" is a word that has universal appeal and is figure truly worthy of benediction! The verses quoted in the review amply demonstrate what's in the book and truly draw one to it! Rahender Krishan's poetry has always been a class apart! Heartiest congratulations Sir! Here's wishing " Amma's Gospel" a far and wide reach and readership!

Padmaja Iyengar-Paddy
25-Oct-2020 23:01 PM

Comment Heartiest congratulations to the author Rajender Krishan ji..The excellent review by Dr Sunil Sharma speaks volumes about the quality of the poems.... I believe any individual, who is in doubt and confusion will find solace in this..

Hema Ravi
25-Oct-2020 20:02 PM

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