The State: A poem by R. M. Prabhulinga Shastry, Bareilly: Prakash Book Depot. ISBN 81-7977-198-9. 2007 Price 60/- pages 97.

The Book The State by R. M. Prabhulinga Shastry is a long poem of spiritual nature that ‘preaches only one thing that exists from time immemorial to for ever’.(According to Prof Sadanand in the foreword) and begins with these short but meaningful lines: ‘I am going on as ‘I’/So I am ‘The Truth’. The poem starts to develop this ‘I’ into Universal ‘I’ when he says:”I am limited in forms/ Of which each could do/Only one or some/particularly or peculiarly’ (4). And he adds: ‘I’ am everywhere and every side. /Even anywhere and every side…’ Thus the poem has captured various mystical themes of Indian Philosophy and woven them into the thread of poetry. The perusal of the book reveals Shastry as the poet firmly rooted in the Indian tradition, Culture and Philosophy. The poem is long, engaging and full of spiritual overtones. The book has a fantastic foreword of Prof. Sadanand who makes clear the theme of the book. Besides, the book carries the messages of the political leaders and dignitaries like Bhairon Singh Shekhawat, A. P. Jithendra Reddy, Ashwini Vaishaw Secretary to Sri Atal Bihari Vajpayee also who makes me amazed when I see that these political leaders have so much time spare to look at the books of the poetry or fiction. Otherwise the political mumbo jumbo would not let them even think of anything else. I am again amazed to see Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee engages Secretary for writing letters on his behalf. This makes me draw two conclusions: one, either Sri Vajpayee receives so many letters requiring blessing notes that he has to hire a secretary for disposing off such issues or Sri Vajpayee is physically unable to write each and everyone personally but which also puts up another question: if Sri Vajpayee is physically unable to write a letter personally How can we imagine that he must have read the book?

But Sri Vajpayee, without hitch is sending wishes and we should also take the things as they are. Shastry is man of spiritual strength and I think that the foreword of Prof Sadanand is enough in highlighting and justifying the message of Shastry. The book is readable and enjoyable to those who have a taste of spirituality in them. I wish Shastryji a hearty thanks for letting me go through the book.

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