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'I will prefer love over passion as I get older'- Author Haulianlal Guite

‘Confessions of a Dying Mind’ is a nonfiction novel written by Haulianlal Guite, an IAS Officer from the state of Manipur in India. He is currently posted in the state of Rajasthan.

The book is arguably the world's first philosophical novel on God - that is, the first to argue the case for God in a novelized format. It explores the nature of science, religion, evidence and even love. It makes use of the latest findings of modern science and the most solid theories in philosophy.

The title, ‘Confessions of a Dying Mind’ alludes to the story of the main protagonist, Albert Dyers - an atheist who undergoes a life-transforming near-death experience. The book is presented as a series of novelized discussions between Mr. Dyers who is in a coma and experiencing the effects of a Near-Death Experience; and a mysterious Mr. Walker, either a figment of his imagination, or a divine figure sent by some force unrevealed, or a distillation of his own inner contemplations, to teach him the meaning of life, religion and all the rest.

What makes this book distinctively different from others is that all the arguments and questions are presented through stories woven into the plotline of the novel itself. The book achieves its essence without using complex or unnecessary jargon, so that the educated lay reader without philosophy background will be able to understand them. It makes use of the latest findings of modern science and the most solid theories in philosophy.

In an exclusive interview with ReadersLand.com, author Haulianlal Guite shares more insights about the book.


Author Haulianlal Guite
RL: Given your background, how did the writing bug bite you?

Haulianlal Guite: Writing has always been my passion. It is something that predates my career as an administrative servant, and for which I suppose I may well be best remembered. Writing comes as naturally to me as does eating or any other natural habit.

RL: What was the idea behind writing 'Confessions of a Dying Mind'?

Haulianlal Guite: That atheism is a system of belief that rests on faith as much as religion does. That modern science has nothing to do with belief or disbelief in God, and that science is a sort of game with its own rules and procedures, which one may decide to play or not play.

RL: How closely it shows the relationship of human being with God (Blind faith of atheism)?

Haulianlal Guite: Not much. The relationship is not so much about man and God, but of man's belief and disbelief in God. It investigates not so much the content of our beliefs, but the justification we have for those beliefs.

RL: Please tell us more about your book 'Confessions of a Dying Mind'?

Haulianlal Guite: "Confessions of a Dying Mind" is a philosophical novel that explores the ultimate of our questions: whether science has done away with God. It investigates the issue by delving into the life and thoughts of the protagonist, Albert Dyers, who is an atheistic journalist who has a Near-Death experience.

In that experience, he meets an entity called Walker, who claims to be an angel. Together, the angel and the journalist trek through the stars and distant galaxies, to times past and futures uncertain, to various worlds, in exploration of the singular question about God's existence. Indeed, the very plotline of the novel is made integral to the thrust of the book's philosophical argument.

RL: Are you working on any other project?

Haulianlal Guite: I was. Now that is more or less complete too! My current project is to create a brand new philosophical utopia, modelled on Plato's Atlantis, which attempts to portray the most feasibly perfect world. Written as a fictional novel unlike this nonfiction work, this second book is an attempt to portray what our world can be like, were we up for it.

RL: Who is your favourite author and why?

Haulianlal Guite: None in particular. Among authors, Will Durant and G.K Chesterton stands out. Not only because they are philosophers, but they are exceedingly gifted writers. Will Durant's prose is lively, engaging and witty; Chesterton's ironies are full of thoughts summarized in the simplest sentences.

Among philosophers however, Immanuel Kant is my favorite. For the simple reason that I believe he has made human reason go as far as is humanly possible, and that he has come closest to the truth.

RL: Do you believe in God? Given a choice, what would you choose- love or passion?

Haulianlal Guite: There was a moment of 2 years in college when I did not believe. Then I read Kant, who saved me from atheism. So yes, my belief in God has revived. To the brim.

Of course I wish for passion in love and love in passion. Short of that however, I choose passion over love in the younger days, and will prefer love over passion as I get older!

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