Book Review - You're born to blossom, by Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam and Arun K Tiwari

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Author - Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam and Arun K Tiwari

Release - Feb 2008

Genre - Self Help Book

About the Author

Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam was an Indian aerospace scientist who served as the 11th President of India from 2002 to 2007. He was born and raised in Rameswaram, Tamil Nadu, and studied physics and aerospace engineering. Abdul Kalam was born on 15 October 1931 to a Tamil Muslim family in the pilgrimage centre of Rameswaram on Pamban Island, then in the Madras Presidency, and now in the State of Tamil Nadu. 

His father Jainulabdeen Marakayar was a boat owner and imam of a local mosque; his mother Ashiamma was a housewife. His father owned a ferry that took Hindu pilgrims back and forth between Rameswaram and the now uninhabited Dhanushkodi.

Arun Kumar Tiwari is an Indian missile scientist, author, and professor. He has written several books and co-authored 5 books with Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam, including Wings of Fire, the autobiography of Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam, former president of India.

Masters in mechanical engineering from GB Pant University for Agriculture & Technology, Tiwari joined Defence Research & Development Organisation (DRDO) in 1982 as a missile scientist. He spent the next 15 years involved in India's military missile development efforts

About the Book -

There are several reasons that one should read this book, but the foremost reason is Dr. A.P.J Abdul Kalam Sir. This book focuses on many aspects of life be it spirituality, be it education, and many more. Dr. Kalam has shown his concerns about the current education system in India. 

He has shown how hollow the system is and how it suppresses the individuality of the students. He has further described how the youth of India is moving in search of a job and how they are not trying to make jobs for others. This book tries to make us understand that each one of us is very special, and has some unique qualities because we are so different from each other. 

It also tells us, that, we should not set the goal by what people consider important, because we are the ones who know what is best for us. One should feel a responsibility towards nature, towards their own country. One should not only think about their financial growth rather they should also think about their country’s growth and contribute to saving the selfless nature. 

Dr. Kalam has explained that the foundation of success rests on three pillars: parents, teachers, and mentors. He has explained how they are important in our lives and how sometimes we become so disrespectful towards them. He conveys to the youth of this country to respect them, and at the same time, he has also added that it should not mean blind obedience. 

A dedicated teacher is like a candle, which burns itself but gives light to others. To stuff the child with lots of information, making him pass examinations, is the most unintelligent form of education. The purpose of education should be to bring a complete transformation to society. 

Inner liberty is both the means and end of education. If we force a child to fit in a particular manner then they would end up becoming a follower. However, we should encourage them to be a leader and should allow them to take risks in their life. Education should actually be intended to assist students to become truly what they are, and not what we want to make them.

Dr. Kalam has explained that in the process of education, it is not only the student who gets the benefit of it, but the teacher also experiences different talents which could be in Science, Technology, or in Creativity. The brain can only become infinite if it's free from conditioning. 

He has explained how a parent expects their child to behave in a particular manner, how the only study is important to a parent. Basically, he tries to explain the actual definition of education, how the education system should be, what are basic things should be taken into consideration which we usually neglect.

My View -

This book highlights the uniqueness of each individual and his/her singular talents to become the best versions. Every individual owes it to her/himself to fulfill the natural potential and determine the course to success.

This course may well be uncharted and unfamiliar but that is what should motivate every person. However, with success, there should be awareness and responsibility. This ties into the fact that we all live as part of one big society and an even greater natural environment. Thus, we must recognize and do our best to benefit and aid its development.

Kalam goes on to critique the extent of education architecture of the country that quells the individuality of the students and focuses on rote-learning and uniform methods of instruction. It does not cater to an individual’s specific requirements, talents, interests, and aspirations.

It emphasizes one particular template for success which can only discourage creativity and originality. However, creative processes require imagination and thus, demand risks and leaps of faith.

Hence, we should not restrict our students from exploring unconventional and novel ideas and concepts. This kind of courage and fertility breeds true leaders which are a resource not just for the nation but its people and society.

The language used in this book is also simple and understandable. He has also shared his experiences of meeting big legendary people, how they used to think, and how their thoughts were different. 

He has also mentioned his teachers who played an important role in his life, and which also shows how important teaching was to him. This book teaches us a lesson that we should ever go back and thank our teachers for their vital role in our life. This book shows how his vision was large and beautiful. In this book, he has tried to touch each and every point of his concern. 

Certain quotes from legendary people have also been used in this book, which makes this book more inspiring. At some point in time, it convinces the readers to rethink certain things which we used to neglect. It's a book that opens our minds and inspires us to think in a different direction. It explains the freedom, knowledge, meaning of education so beautifully that one has to rethink his building blocks.

My rating for the book - 5/5
You can easily buy a copy of this book from Amazon - You're born to blossom

Written By - Ishita Sharma
Edited By - Anamika Malik