Having read some inspiring Hindu scriptures and a mathematician turned to an author- Abhishek Leela Pandey, recently published his book The Man with Five Heads which is the story of Evolution of Humans. His book revolves around the concept of Trinity as the central theme. Apart from writing he has trained Management aspirants across the globe in fields pertaining to numeracy, aptitude and soft skills. In conversation with Desimusings, Abhishek, indulges into the path that led him to writing. Read on..
What is this novel all about?
It is widely believed that Brahma created the Universe, Vishnu preserves it and Shiva destroys it. I see this concept not just as a story, truth, myth or fiction but a personified account of the three major aspects of this world- create, protect and destroy (for creating again).
I have based my story around the ancient texts of Indian Mythology, and tried to remove the mythical element, retaining the scientific and logical essence of it.
What is the central theme?
The central theme of this book is a question – why creativity is not worshipped?
The Man with Five Heads, how did this title come to your mind, how would you describe it and who does “Man” refer to?
The central character of the book is Brahma. As a kid, I felt that Brahma had four heads, as he is shown in the pictures, but I realised later, that he had a fifth head which looked towards the outer space. The fifth head was chopped off by Lord Shiva owing to a curse.
Now, I as a writer didn’t want to show him as a magical being (or God). I tried to show him as a human, therefore “Man” is used in the title. “The five heads” refer to the mythological story mentioned above. In the book, the five heads indicate the mental ability of Brahma, the creator, which was equivalent to five normal humans.
Hindu beliefs and prehistory of India being called Mythology, constitutes of whatever we remember only as tell tales which are carried from long past till date. How do you account for this not being any Mythology, instead, has scientific importance?
Myth and Reality go hand in hand!
I remember, I was twelve when I read an article in a newspaper that there were evidences of two different kinds of humans existing together. Our scientists had found the skeleton of a human type which was not like us, but co-existed with us. This finding gave me a reason to think beyond out apparent mythology. The stories of Gods and Demons seemed true. What if Gods were the modern humans? What if the Demons were Neanderthal humans?
I started reading Vedas and Puranas. Everything looked coherent. I realised I needed to find more. I tried to compare the chronology of our mythical texts and the evolution of human beings. I was surprised at the sheer genius of Rishi Ved Vyasa. He had written the texts in such a way that things looked magical, but deep-down; it was all real, with some artistic liberal exceptions.
The most shocking part of the texts was how Brahma despite being the creator was neglected. I read more and then framed a story in my mind. I felt that he must be the first innovator known (or unknown) to mankind. The weapons used, the theories practiced, the tenets of Sanatana Dharma, and many other things fell in place. I realized that the mythology was deliberately made to look miraculous, and there were authentic reasons for it. I have tried to encompass all my findings in “The Man with Five Heads”.
Indian Mythology is too vast to explore. What challenges did you face while putting things together into this masterpiece?
Thank you for calling it a masterpiece!
The major challenge was to remove the magical element and still retain the godliness of many characters. The other challenge was to create the character of the character!
Very little is mentioned about Brahma.
What fueled you to write this book?
I wanted people to start looking at our ancient texts from a different angle. The generation before us looks at the concept of God in an inscrutable way. The young generation tries to challenge the notion of God and religion without knowing anything (sorry to say, but it is a fact). I wanted to remove this mechanization of human minds.
I started writing this book in order to let people know the scientific and metaphysical part of our religion.
Learning is a process which never stops and we learn at each and every step of our life. What were your learning experience(s) throughout the writing and publishing process?
While writing I learnt (rather, developed) a method of telling a vast story with a vast coverage of characters, places and scenes. I learnt how to not make my story a tale of preaching (people get bored!) and maintain the readability.
The publishing made me more human. I realized who are the people who love me unconditionally!
The book has already reached the top seller category in just a few days of its release. How do you feel about that?
The feeling is an aftereffect of an algorithm. I feel good, of course, but the real happiness would come when people start looking at our ancient texts in a scientific way. That would require a a much greater readership. Hope it will come soon!
The readers are loving it. What message do you have for them?
Wait for the next part! You will be surprised more.
What would be your advice to the young upcoming writers?
Never write a story which you don’t believe in.
Apart from the book, we know you as a great author. If we talk about the author as a person 🙂 , is there something about you people may be surprised to know?
I am a practicing mathematician. I look at mathematics as a philosophy and therefore, have developed a series of theories which I would reveal soon.
Where do you keep writing: as a hobby, passion or profession?
What’s next and upcoming?
- Reborn (Sequel to The Man with Five Heads)
- The Mother of God (Mathematics Romance Fiction)
- The Blue Bullet (Political Thriller)
- #NotAllMen (Non- Fiction)
- Brahmaganita (Academic book on mathematics