Real events inspire captivating story of how faith moves mountains
spiritual grace. It takes the readers on a journey into the depths of the occult practices of Islam and Hinduism.
Inspired by real-life events, the book introduces us to Zainul Khan, who is comatose after a vehicle crash.
The family endeavour to remain hopeful while preparing for the worst as his vitals begin to fail.
They refuse the prognosis of doctors and are not prepared to accept Zainul’s untimely demise and maintain an unwavering faith in a higher cosmic force.
A series of supernatural events unravel as the Hindu goddess Kali, Islam’s Hazrat Ali and the Hindu avatar of Lord Shiva, Sathya Sai Baba, work in unison to protect his soul from transitioning.
In an interview with the Weekend Argus, Khan said he had been pondering this since he was involved in a freak crash with his brother last year.
“I lived every day since that moment in slow motion. I quit my 9 to 5 job and dedicated the past two years to spending every day with him as he recovered.
“In the Sotho tradition, it is said either the eldest child or the youngest will be the one whose spirit is blessed to keep a family together. I suppose, in our case, it was my brother Zain. He was the one who inspired me to pen this novel,” he said.
During his formative years, Khan was greatly influenced by religion and the power that religious texts held over his impressionable mind. He studied computer science in Durban only to abandon it after a year and study at Oxford for three years.
His true passion resided in the written word and he said he has been writing for as long as he can remember. Growing up in a dualfaith family helped him pen the religious nuances in this book, and played a strong role in the selection of this particular theme.
“I chose this subject, as it is one that is close to my heart and belief systems. My mother’s lineage is Hindu and my father belongs to the Sunni Muslim tribe.
“From a very young age, my tutelage in language, culture, tradition and religious practice was (instilled) in me from my grandparents. I would spend time after school in madrassah (Islamic school of teaching), then I would rush over to my Hindu grandparents for more studies, but this time in Hinduism.
“I loved the mix of both religions. It gave me a sense of pride to be able to understand ancient doctrines of Hinduism and Islam,” he said.
The book is dedicated to the primeval spiritual energy of Goddess Kali. She is pictured as the most fearsome Hindu Shakti (Power) and her stories are bedtime tales that give one a sense of comfort.
Khan sheds light on traditions that are deemed obsolete but are very much in practice on the sly.
“When we speak of the balance in life, there has always been a duality that I have been exposed to in Hinduism. The element of Shiva and Shakti is like yin and yang… The concept in Islam of occult and tantric practice is known as ‘black magic’.”
Propelled by the divine hand of God, Khan began writing the book on the first day of the Hindu festival of Navaratri (Nine Nights), and completed it on the ninth day. He is hopeful readers will partake in his journey and his words can instil faith in their hearts.
“The book is an offering of hope and love – a journey into the depths of myth, legend, occult and tantric practice. When I wrote (the book) it wasn’t a journey I found very easy. I moved between Hindu, Sanskrit, and Arabic and Urdu. I spent a good deal of time ensuring that when a person of another culture read the book, it would carry the tone of malevolence and passion that a Hindu or Muslim would experience,” he said.
The book hits the shelves next month. Currently it is available online at Amazon and Kobo.
Large-scale sculptures fill the gallery space.