M.Anandam’s book ‘Prime Problems of This Age’ covers all the problems faced by the humankind today in the light of the threat of the atomic explosion that looms large over the world, and comes out with suggestions for safe living in a world beset with myriad divisions. Unity among nations and races is imminent if the society has to survive at all. For this, the concept of equality and an attitude of universal brotherhood must be cultivated.
The author strongly feels that the concept of an omnipotent god and the beliefs and rituals that go along with it go against human progress. The same can be said of the priestly class also which, acting in its own self-interest, fills man’s mind with unnecessary ideas and concocted stories, impede the development of rational and scientific thinking, and block the growth of civilization.
Speaking of making democracy more functional and effective, M.Anandam suggests some essential requisites for people’s representatives and the values to be assimilated.
Humanistic outlook has been endorsed as the prime requisite, for everyone, and hence is essential for people’s representatives. Though by about fifth century BC, humanistic and universal outlook blossomed in a few civilized societies and continues to remain, there are so many factors which come in the way of the human race. The factors are selfishness, self esteem coupled with annoyance, pleasure seeking, and egoism. The author adds craze to attain immortality to this list, since it was this factor that led to a number of wars.
Referring to humanistic outlook, the author points out that “thinkers remind us of the truth that knowledge has given us power but not the wisdom to use the power for good. Wisdom emphasis that we should live as complete men and women with a humanistic outlook,” and exhorts, “Let us live as wisdom dictates.”
Discussing the topic of Cultural Revolution at length he goes through the role played by different religions in the course of history, and milestone incidents like French Revolution, and Russian Revolution, in shaping the culture of individual countries and that of mankind as a whole. He advocates the development of spirit of enquiry which will bring about a change in the mental outlook of people, leading to the spontaneous emergence of new thoughts, resulting in the creation of a rich civilization. This thought – provoking work concludes by pointing out real happiness is derived from the exercise of intelligence, of love and of a developed capacity to appreciate the best in art and literature.
The work is interspersed with apt quotations at the right places, drawing from the think tank of the Western thinkers. If it is the author’s purpose to initiate a discussion on establishing a new world order, he has amply succeeded in it.