Scott Adams of Dilbert fame writes a fictional thought-experiment that is designed to make a reader rethink the bigger questions in life.
At 132 pages it is a novella but given the philosophical, scientific, mathematical, spiritual, and social topics concerning the two fictional characters, a reader can be forgiven for forgetting it is not of the self-help or nonfiction genres.
It is an easy read but at the same time it isn’t.
Adams’ writing flows as a conversation between an old man – an Avatar who knows literally everything – and a delivery man.
The introduction to the book is compelling and Adams accepts that its controversial nature may not sit well with some readers.
Nevertheless, he skillfully presents unorthodox viewpoints about the world and about our knowledge of it that make the Edward Debono literature I grew up reading seem really handy.
To enjoy such a book, one needs to think somewhat laterally, be open to alternative worldviews, and not take the ideas therein as a personal attack on their belief system. One also needs to constantly refer back to the introduction chapter and remember that it is a work of fiction.
The biggest appeal for me was the relationship between the two characters. The way that strangers can establish trust that may subsequently develop into a fruitful exchange is a valuable aspect of this book.
Both of the characters are likeable and the delivery man’s quandaries are endearingly relatable. The ending is a heartwarming reminder of one’s unique vocations in this life and our connectedness to others.
God’s Debris is peppered with wisdom such as “don’t judge people by their mistakes; rather, judge them by how they respond to their mistakes” and reminded me of times when I could indulge in deep and meaningful conversations with someone; hours would pass that seemed like seconds.
I recommend that you read God’s Debris, available as a free pdf from Goodreads, and immerse yourself in Adams’ thought experiment. I didn’t agree with everything in it then I reminded myself that the ideas are fictional.
Categories: Libretto (Book Reviews)