The Billionaire and the Monk by Vibhor Kumar Singh: Book Review
Updated: Jan 25, 2022
"A simple story about extraordinary happiness" read the book's subtitle. Extraordinary happiness, how nice! That's what I thought when I picked it up. To think of it, what is extraordinary happiness? How do we get there? Is it possible for it to stay with us forever? I could never know. If anyone asks, I'd relate finding extraordinary happiness to catching a firefly. It lights up our worlds for fleeting moments, very intermittently. But when it does, it's beautiful! Rest of the time is spent either in memory, or anticipation of it.
Personally, I experience "extraordinary happiness" when I find progress at work, be it professional or creative. When I see things moving forward in an exciting way, I get a heavy kick! The feeling is absolutely magical, and while I wish everyone could experience it like I do, I realise it's not possible. We're all very different when it comes to things like these. Is there one way to pursue happiness? I don't know. What does the book say about it? I was eager to learn.
'The Billionaire and the Monk' begins on the premise of the two characters finding each other at an interesting crossroads of life. The money man has excelled at the material world, but is looking at being happy; while the Monk has knowledge about these things, but seems to be in the phase of reconnecting with the material world. Moving forward on this foundation, what follows is a lot of cross talk about finding the best of both worlds. About finding "balance" and thus, happiness.
While there's no disputing the core message of the book, I feel it could have been slightly more "interesting" in its way of dealing with the topic. In themes like these, it's very easy for books to fall prey to cliches. The Billionaire and the Monk was challenged by the same hurdles, and it succeeded at many places (while seemingly falling short at others).
All in all, a sweet and short book to remind you about true happiness.
15th book of 2021, #52booksin2021
(As a part of my yearly campaign #52booksinayear)
P.S. You just read an honest (and hopefully valuable) article for free. If you like reading my writing, subscribe to the mailing list and also consider making donations. Amounts don't matter, gestures do.