- Book Review
- Catalyst by Alex Sangha
- By: Ravneet Samra
- For: South Asian Woman Magazine
- Fall 2013 Issue
Catalyst by Alex Sangha is not your regular time-pass novel. It is a series of short one to two page excerpts that open our minds up and get us thinking about where we are going as a country and as a society. Each excerpt ends with a question to ponder upon. Reading Catalyst was a treat because it allowed me to be open to topics that reflect on values, goals and beliefs, and topics which ultimately shape the future of our society.
The book is divided into three categories: Our World, Our Country and Our Life. Sangha provides a vast amount of unbiased knowledge to readers on a variety of subjects, including life after death, arranged marriage, depression, homosexuality, poverty, the death penalty, immigration, politics, and much more. His suggestions on how to overcome certain issues that he highlights are insightful. However, Sangha encourages readers to be critical thinkers and come up with their own opinions as well; don’t believe everything people tell you; it’s not the only perspective out there. It is important to know if our opinions are based on ignorance or are formed after examining all facts.
Sangha has opened my mind to how I can help stop bullying, how I can help a loved one suffering from depression, my thoughts on the death penalty, how those with a mental illness can find employment easier, how to improve the health care system, and the benefits of being a vegetarian, to name a few. By being informed critical thinkers, we can help the world move forward. So, what can you do to be more informed about the world and make a difference? Sangha suggests, “What are the things you see in the world that you think need to change? What makes your blood boil or your passions rise? Make a list of the issues that most concern you and think about how you could solve them.”
Reading this book is a good start to understanding the foundations and gaining clarity of the many challenges and issues currently affecting our world.