Top critical review
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Interesting, if somewhat esoteric
on 15 August 2009
Having read "Islam and the Destiny of Man" and admired the author's style and eloquence, I turned to this, his earlier book published in 1977 with great expectations. To be honest, I was rather shocked to find he presented a much more serious almost harsh tone here. The book tread similar ground but Gai Eaton comes across as almost unforgiving and even dismissive as he brings modern society under scrutiny and invites us to challenge what we have come to take for granted. We are asked to question the norms that we allow to govern our lives on a daily basis and judge whether we have come to accept the pursuit of the mundane as a substitute for what should be our true, higher goals.
Without a doubt there is so much that is new and refreshing and eye-opening in this book and there is food for thought in abundance. Even so, I would label this book as one more accessible to intellectuals. As an ordinary person with a merely adequate education, I confess that I struggled with some of the finer points he was trying to make and maybe lacking the ability for refined thinking I began to suspect that it was bordering on repetitive. These reservations notwithstanding I have to point out that Gai Eaton is an original and compelling voice and one that we should be taking heed of in these times where the world often feels topsy-turvy and when we are witnessing the erosion of fundamental human values. If you're looking for an easier read I would heartily recommend "Islam and the Destiny of Man".