Book Review – 4 Pillars of Abundant Life – Ashok Wahi



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Life is full of ups and downs and it does offer flips and flops. In this fast-moving life, it is easy to find and buy materialistic things but difficult to find happiness. Whenever a building is constructed, the base should be strong enough or else the building is expected to collapse. The pillars of the building should be efficient enough to construct and complete the building. So is the case with life which is also build on some pillars.

Today, I am reviewing a beautiful book for living a happy life. As presented in his debut book titled “4 Pillars of Abundant Life”, author Ashok Wahi had presented the 4 pillars of life or better to say “abundant” life. The author had tried to explain the building blocks of life by these 4 pillars.

About the Author

Ashok Wahi had a very successful corporate career spanning four decades. He has been a friend, philosopher, and guide to many – young and old from all spheres of life. He has a unique gift of presenting complexities of life in a very simple and personal experiences.

Need not to mention that the author belongs to the blogging fraternity and I am very happy to write review of his debut book. He is a very good blogger and I request you all to visit his blog for his literary pieces. Please check his blog, https://ashokwahi.wordpress.com/

It gives me a lot of pleasure to write review post of his debut book. Being known him for few years as a blogger, I would like to congratulate the “author” now. Many congratulations. 🙂

About the Book

As the name suggests, “4 Pillars of Abundant Life”, the book brings four pillars to live an abundant life which is presented in the four chapters. The book has a lot of examples from the author’s life and his personal experiences, making the book a blissful read. All the examples provided in the book gives a learning experience. Apart from the examples, the book is filled with many quotes which beautify the reading experience. And the best part is, the book is short, precise and to the point. The book provides an important message about the “House of Abundance” which is built on four pillars.

PC: Self

The book is simple and easy to understand. The book starts with an introductory chapter which is more than enough for the readers not to leave the book before finishing it. The introductory chapter throws some insights and at the same time puts some of the important questions in search of happiness. While reading, the book compels to pause for a moment and think on the questions raised. Taking some of the examples from the corporate world as well, the author had presented a relatable read to the readers. There is an interesting point made by the author regarding happiness vs successful. An extract from the book needs a worth mention.

It is so true that all the so-called successful people are not always happy, but every happy person is always successful! Because whatever we want to do or possess or achieve is for this feeling of happiness.

The book beautifully describes the happiness stealers and happiness enhancers in our life. Unfulfilled desires and worrying about the future are two important stealers of happiness whereas curiosity and enthusiasm are the two important enhancers of happiness.  Unnecessarily thinking and worrying about the future and that too for hypothetical reasons which spoils the present should be avoided, the author had strongly given this message in his book. One must look for the moments and things which brings happiness.

As it is said, money is not a guarantee to live a happy life, but majority of the people have that thinking of money giving a guaranteed happy life, the author had beautifully discussed this myth in the book. Life is full of ups and downs. Be it good or bad, nothing lasts forever. There is no end to pain and suffering in life, they will come but will go as well if faced properly. One should be always be happy in helping others, not only in monetary terms but emotionally, motivationally etc. Doing charity is good but “charity without publicity” is real charity, the book provides such kind of thinking.

Finding happiness in life is a difficult task. But why? It is difficult because most of us try to find it outside. Of course, it depends on external factors but majorly, happiness depends on our internal mental attitudes. The book provides an eye-opening discussion. Life is journey and being successful in life is what everyone desires. A very meaningful quote in the book is worth to mention.

Success is a ladder up that we go step-by-step. If the ladder isn’t balanced, we are sure to fall.

There should be a balance in life, as discussed in the book. The book also provides an important formula for distributing 24 hour a day into three portions. Please read the book to know the formula. To be successful in life, concentration is required, and meditation is the best way to focus or concentrate. Meditation is helpful in becoming spiritual. A fruitful discussion on meditation is provided in the book.

To conclude, author Ashok Wahi had given a gem in his debut book which is a blissful read. The book is inspirational and motivational as well.  4 Pillars of Abundant Life, please read the book and live an abundant life, which is crucial.

– Ashish Kumar

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Blog Anniversary – 10 Years of Blogging



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Dear Readers,

I am very pleased to inform you all that today my blog – Ashish Vision has completed 10 years in blogging world. 🕺 Yes, it is on this day that I created my blog and the support I got from all of you is incredible. A decade of blogging journey was impossible without your motivation, support and blessings. 🙏👏 This is something which I never thought of when I started blogging. When I started sharing my literary pieces 10 years ago, I was not sure how long I will be able to continue but this happened because of you all… 🙂 Frankly speaking, you all are my strength… 🙂 This is one of the rarest things which cannot be expressed in words… 🙂 👌😂

 

I was in first year of B.Tech when I created this blog and I was not aware that my writings will get overwhelming response across the globe, for which I pay my gratitude to all of you. 🙂 🙏 Thank you everyone! I used to write poems in my diary before creating this blog. The best part of blogging is here readers can directly interact with writers and I have learnt a lot from these interactions in the form of your comments. Received many important and constructive feedback from many of you and have tried to incorporate the same in my writings. This virtual world gave me the platform where writers can share their writings and the best part is blogging gives you a chance to connect with like minded persons. All the readers whoever had visited my blog frequently, sometimes or even single time, I pay my gratitude to them. 🙂

Readers are writers strength and this should be accepted, in my opinion. I have always tried my best to keep that in my mind and this what had kept me going. I know, I am not that much frequent in posting but I do share whenever a thought comes in my mind. Writing is my hobby and I love to write. I enjoy it. 🙂 Avoiding forceful writing, I don’t write just to increase number of post. I love to write and share it to the respected readers.

Once again, I would like to thank everyone for your constant support and motivation. Also, I would like to have your feedback and request you to kindly share that in the form of your comments including any suggestions, would be happy to know. 🙂

Keep showering your blessings always. Stay tuned.. Keep visiting… 🙂

– Ashish Kumar

Shayari – 13


ज़िन्दगी और जीवन में भी कोई फर्क है क्या ?

शायद हो भी सकता है।

कहीं ऐसा तो नहीं …

ज़िन्दगी वो है जो हम सोचते हैं और जीवन वो है जो हम जीते हैं।

  • Ashish Kumar

Book Review – Ikigai – Hector Garcia and Francesc Miralles



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Life is a journey of moments. Be it happy or sad, one should accept it. Learning form life experiences make us better and help us in our day to day activities. Adding values to our life cannot be a one-time activity and so is the personal development. There are many books on personal development, but the book which I am covering here is little different. Life without a purpose has no meaning and the book, IKIGAI – The Japanese Secret to Long and Happy Life, emphasizes this a lot apart form living in present.  Before going into the depth of the book, it’s important to be aware some aspects in order to understand the book properly which is given below.

The Background: As per WHO, Japan has highest life expectancy in the world. Also, Japan has highest ratio of centenarians in the world: more than 520 for every million (as of September 2016). IKIGAI is a Japanese concept meaning “the happiness of always being busy”. The book brings the lifestyle of an island namely Okinawa, in Japan. Okinawa, where there are 24.55 people over the age of 100 for every 100,000 inhabitants, far more than global average. Going further, Ogimi, a rural town of the island having a population of 3000, has the highest life expectancy in the world. This is the reason behind Ogimi to be called as “Village of Longevity”. Not only they live longer but also suffer from fewer chronic diseases like Cancer and heart diseases, inflammatory disorders are also less common. Having highest life expectancy and highest number of centenarians in the world and it’s a blissful experience to know about the lifestyle of people living in Okinawa. The book covers the same.

About the Authors

IKIGAI- The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life, is written by Hector Garcia and Francesc Miralles. The book published in 2017 is an International Bestseller.

PC: Google

Hector Garcia: Born in 1981 in Spain, Héctor García is a citizen of Japan, where he has lived for over a decade. He is the author of several books about Japanese culture, including two worldwide bestsellers, A Geek in Japan and Ikigai. A former software engineer, he worked at CERN in Switzerland before moving to Japan.

 

 

PC: Google

Francesc Miralles: Born in 1968, Fransecs Miralles is a Spanish writer, essayist, translator and musician. He is an award-winning and internationally bestselling author of books about how to live well, together with the novels Love in Small Letters and Wabi-Sabi.

 

 

About the Book

The book provides an energetic rhythm towards life and does motivates to be positive. The book tries to make readers to identify their IKIGAI. Fast moving life has made life a race and in turn we forget to be happy and hence welcoming toxic thoughts. The book is full of positive vibes. Based on the lifestyle of people living in Okinawa, the book covers Secrets of being happy and living long, antiaging, staying young while growing old, IKIGAI diet, being resilient etc.

The book stresses a lot on having clear purpose in life, living in the present, doing exercises/yoga etc. Diet plays an important role in staying heathy and “Okinawa Diet” is well discussed across the globe. In fact, the mortality rate from cardiovascular disease in Okinawa is the lowest in Japan and diet plays a major role apart from doing exercise/yoga. There are separate chapters dedicated for diet and exercised promoting health and longevity. They eat a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, rarely eat sugar, consumes natural antioxidants etc. The book briefly covers wide exercises including yoga, which originates from India.

The book talks to the point without stretching. The first chapter itself starts with “The art of staying young while growing old”, provides an everlasting impact which build a rhythm of reading rest of the book.  According to the Japanese, everyone has an Ikigai hidden deep inside each of us, and finding it requires a patient search”.  In Okinawa, people don’t retire as having a purpose in life is so important in Japanese culture that the idea of retirement simply doesn’t exist there. There is a brief discussion about the five Blue Zones identified and analyzed by Dan Buettner in his book “The Blue zones” and Okinawa holds first place.

Stress is one of the most common problems in today’s fast-moving life. The negative effects of stressful life is well known and the book discuss the same. As stress has degenerative effect over time, it is one of the major elements which kills longevity and happiness. However, looking at the other side, the authors clearly suggests taking little stress is good. Intense stress is dangerous while low level if stress is beneficial.

As mentioned previously, the book focuses on having a purpose in life. A separate chapter is dedicated for having a purpose in life. There is a fruitful discussion of life with/without a purpose. Having a purpose gives meaning to life which provides energy to achieve it which in turn keeps us busy. The book covers logotherapy and psychoanalysis and their differences which are ways to identify purpose in life. Having purpose in life eliminates existential frustration and existential crisis. Existential frustration arises when our life is without purpose. Existential crisis is typical of modern societies in which people do what they are told to do, or what others do, rather than what they want to do. They often try to fill the gap between what is expected of them and what they want for themselves with economic power or physical pleasure, or by numbing their senses. It can even lead to suicide. One should discover meaning of their life rather than creating it.

PC: Google

In the book, there is an interesting discussion about multitasking and concentrating on single task, flow and distraction. One should have a flow in life which comes with a clear objective or else vague objective gives confusion. Many people are multitasker today and those who aren’t, try to be a multitasker. According to the authors, multitasking reduces productivity, IQ and creativity whereas concentrating on single task increases the same. One interesting suggestion provided by authors is to go for ‘Technological fasting’ at least once in a week. Technological fasting refers to staying away from whats app, facebook, internet etc.  When you have a clear objective and flow, hours pass smoothly with mind focussed on your work which you enjoy. These are substantiated with several examples.

One of the most interesting part of the book is it bring brief story about those who are supercentenarians- people who lived 110 years or above. There is a dedicated chapter which covers their lifestyle. Jeanne Calment (1875 – 1997) is the oldest person of verified age history, who lived for 122 years. Isn’t it interesting to know their stories who are supercentenarians?

The book not only covers the diet, exercises, antiaging, stress and its consequences etc but also brings about the various culture of Okinawa and how they had maintained a proper balance between culture and technology.

One of the motivating factors the book suggests is to be resilient. Resilience is our ability to deal with the setbacks. Resilient people know to stay focusses. The reason behind one should be resilient enough is to concentrate on the things one can control and not worrying about those one can’t. Meditation helps a lot in becoming resilient and focused. Worrying about things that are beyond our control achieves nothing. We should have a clear sense of what we can change and what we can’t. Most of the problems in life occurs not because of things that happens but how we react. As life is impermanence, live in the present as present is the only thing we can control and feel. The book is a blissful read with eye opening materials bringing optimism and eliminating pessimism.

The book concludes with an epilogue which provided 10 rules of IKIGAI and the first being stay active; don’t retire, apart from live in the moment, reconnect with nature; to name a few.

Some of the main reasons why one should read this book is of course the longevity factor, happiness etc but there is one more reason I found is mentioned below which is an extract from the book itself.

Okinawa is one of the areas in Japan that were most affected by World War II. As a result, not only of conflicts on the battlefield but also of hunger and a lack of resources once the war ended, the average life expectancy was not very high during the 1940s and 1950s. As Okinawans recovered from the destruction, however, they came to be some of the country’s longest living citizens.

Isn’t it interesting to know about the lifestyle of such a place which was once affected badly by World War II?  Lack of resources and hunger, the life expectancy was not high that time but looking today, it has achieved the highest life expectancy in the world with the greatest number of centenarians and supercentenarians.

Please share your opinions on this review post. 🙂

– Ashish Kumar

Few Quotes – 13


Hello everyone! I hope all are doing good… Just wanted to share couple of my quotations which I penned recently after a gap of more than two years. Last time, it was way back in November 2018 wherein I shared few of my quotes. You may read Few Quotes – 12. As this being the 13th instalment of my Few Quotes Series, keep your blessings intact for my quotations. Read and do share your thoughts/opinions. 🙂

  • Some intangible pain should be buried forever.
  • Intangible pain if busted, comes with lot of sufferings along with disastrous repercussion.

– Ashish Kumar