The Book that Made Your World
How the Bible Created the Soul of Western Civilization
by Vishal Mangalwadi
Thomas Nelson, 2011
I can’t remember how or where I heard of Vishal Mangalwadi. It has probably been four or five years since I went to his website at http://www.revelationmovement.com/ and purchased a download of 11 videos, each about an hour long, titled Must the Sun Set on the West. This video series, still available on Amazon, is made up of talks based on his book, The Book that Made Your World: How the Bible Created the Soul of Western Civilization.
After watching the series, I immediately bought a copy of the book. I am on my third copy of the book because I gave two away. I believe it is one of the most important non-fiction works I have ever read.
When reading this book, I am mesmerized by Dr. Mangalwadi's fluid presentation and aptitude for examining large spans of history, connecting the past to the present, while making it personal by including anecdotes from his amazing life.
It is a fitting book to revisit now, especially since this past week, September 24th, 2016 was the 25th anniversary of the Nirvana album Nevermind. The Book that Made Your World, was itself published to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the book of the 2nd millennium, The Kings James Bible.
The first chapter in the book is titled, The West Without Its Soul: From Bach to Cobain and opens with the discovery of Kurt Cobain’s body in 1994. Dr. Mangalwadi weaves the story in this chapter of a transformation of society from one that seeks God and gives glory to Him and the cultural changes that naturally follow. This influence is shown through figures such as Johann Sebastian Bach, who displayed it in his work by dedicating every piece he wrote to “the Glory of God.
Comparing that worldview to today’s western society that rejects the God of the Bible and Biblical philosophy, Dr. Mangalwadi deftly shows the resulting chaos of lyrics such as:
Death Is what I am,
Go to hell, Go to jail . . .
Kurt Cobain - Endless, Nameless
and how the Godless worldview has led to a reality, that for many is “senseless, hopeless, and painful.”
Dr. Mangalwadi takes three chapters to tell his personal story which I am sure will be a book of its own someday. He then launches the book proper and begins connecting the dots through history to show how The Bible is the book that, “created the soul of Western Civilization.”
The Book that Made Your World flows effortlessly for any level of reader. Dr. Mangalwadi’s prose makes this book an easy read even at 442 pages. I highly recommend the book and it has been praised by many including Ravi Zacharias and Dallas Willard, just to name the first two in the opening pages.
This is a wonderful book; an important book.