22 Sep 2007, 0022 hrs IST,Sudeshna Chatterjee,TNN
By Neville Tuli, Founder chairman, Osian’s
There is a thin line between reading, studying, researching and writing given the vast area of work that one has to handle in our company.
On any given day, I am torn between reading 10 to 15 different books, and really doing justice to very few. Reading is still that great introspective habit which allows a ‘one to one’ with another creative spirit and opens the mind faster onto new tangents than other cultural disciplines, though each provides different joys.
The script of Tapas, a book on Polish Posters of the 1960s, a book on Japanese kabuto, Tibetan Thankgas of the 15th century and the origins of Asian cinema, the new yet-to-be published work by Saeed Mirza, are some of the unfinished pages on the desk at present.
You may ask, how do I select titles? Well, my work comes in handy here. I never look at the best-seller list or listen to the recommendations of others. My favourite books include many. At different stages of life, different books touch my mind and heart.
From Crime and Punishment, Man for all Seasons, Sankara’s interpretation of the Brahmasutra, Isha & Katha Upanishad, to Candide to Asterix to books by Heisenberg (The 1932 Nobel Prize Presentation Papers), Habermas (Truth and Justification), Bataille (Madame Edwarda), Levy and many others, they all leave behind moments and nuggets to dwell upon. Any idea which is well thought out and original, honest and joyous, introspective and bold, these are the reasons that we all still love the book, any book which is true to such.
But I suppose Dostoeyevsky would be one clear choice when it comes to my all-time favourite author, given he entered the mind when it was most open and ready to respect and admire writing, and given the many shared thoughts, from gambling to the concept of redemption and forgiveness. However, Sankara and the unknown philosophers in the Upanishads are, without any doubt, the closest in heart and spirit.