The writer of a new book, entitled, “Abai and the Future of Kazakhstan” is no stranger to local audiences. Orazaly Sabden is best known, perhaps, as a scientist and public figure: an academician, as well as a winner of the State Prize of the Republic of Kazakhstan as best new author. Looking back, of course, Abai’s literary rubrics have been leading humanity to spiritual values for two centuries, which is why Abai has become a symbol of free speech and open-mindedness.

The book outlines, therefore, the author’s intention to solve textual problems in the XXI century originally raised by this renowned thinker two centuries ago: issues proving relevant to this day.
Hence, the great Abai still inspires contemporary readers through his spiritual intelligence and insights. Each a phenomenon known, honored, recognized, and loved, by young and old, rich and poor, alike. Overall, readers will find answers to a number of important questions first addressed by Abai, accompanied by reviews from famous scientists and acknowledged experts.
A book for everyone
One cannot but admit that O. Sabden’s book “Abai and the Future of Kazakhstan” is greatly surprising in a positive way. Indeed, within his text, the author suggests that the XXI century will be an age wherein a “humanisation of society” occurs. A time when Abai’s advice “created for the people” will finally be reflected in the spiritual values of humankind at large. Reminiscent, therefore, of M. Auezov’s novel “The way of Abai”, it is reassuring to us (as researchers of his artwork), that O. Sabden contends his main goal is realized in the implicit need to tread a path to civilization by dint of Abai’s heritage.
Additionally unique is Orazaly Sabden’s insistence that searching for mechanisms to implement the ideas of Abai, while offering a number of new recommendations and projects (such as the regulation of a global currency; models of management and the regulation of global processes), will propel his project into ever more deeply engaging modes of discourse and comparative understanding. With this in mind, it is interesting to read that O. Sabden proposes to create, in Kazakhstan, a new form of the Great Silk Road, “The Theological Academy Named after Abai», which can also serve as a centre for studying the spiritual heritage of Abai. As such, eastern philosophy – allied to a special vision of Eurasian space – could contribute to the development of future civilizations. Hence, this proposal serves as a moral reorientation in our current attitudes, partly explaining why the author makes an attempt, to outline fundamental ethical principles in the XXI century, answering questions such as “what will moral codes be like in the XXI century?” Of course, these are intellectual, as well as scientific issues: all reflecting higher-consciousness and the possibility of a humane education. So, the potential transition from quantity to quality in our society is carefully examined.
One observes that in some sections new technologies are defined as vehicles of radical change – a veritable second Industrial Revolution – as the general evolution of consciousness increases. Undoubtedly, as the author comments, only then will humankind be able to enjoy the fruits of peaceful progress. With such thoughts in mind, it is clear that this book is written for a global readership, which is appropriate since it associates Abai ideas with concepts from other planetary geniuses like Confucius, Nostradamus, etc. Thus, a commonality is introduced between the thoughts of Abai and the greater world community.
There is one rather striking and original concept worth mentioning too – the idea of building – in the “Valley of Turkestan” – a new spiritual-technological cluster. Phrased differently, Sabden suggests constructing a city intended to become the spiritual capital of Turkestan: a veritable Theological Academy. Envisaged as such, this project would include a (planetary) historical and geographical museum, tourism and security. Moreover, this is not just a suggestion, but a specific recommendation to the powers that be: accompanied by financial calculations. Dauntingly, his advisors say this 8 billion dollar project is feasible, although, to date, this megaproject has no analogues. Nevertheless, the author believes his audacious plans will be realized, if not today, then undoubtedly in the future.
All things considered, this intriguing book also presents readers with a huge amount of information regarding the outstanding personalities from our Turkic -Kazakh region. Each name begging the question of preserving heritage for the next generation, while finding in them answers for many of today’s problems. Looking back, the last century took claims by the German Nobel Prize winning physicist Max Planck as guidelines towards such a higher-consciousness. Pundits are coming to believe that the whole world is interconnected by some unseen power. From this angle, the author inquires «fourth edification» into «What is the level of our spiritual values, at what level we are now, how can we upgrade?” Interestingly, in attempting to answer these questions O. Sabden announces, «Spiritual values ​​must be considered incomparably superior to all others. Afterwards convincingly threading this idea through the teachings of Abai and inviting his readers to inquire for themselves. Taken together, this book represents interesting projects, which include original thoughts and philosophical trends – even though his readers should be acquainted with Abai from the outset. Nonetheless, Sabden’s work is innovative. Almost akin to spiritual food. Reminding us that sagacious books of this type are written infrequently. Perhaps, the author aims to present Abai from the point of view of modernity: inclusive of its socioeconomic convulsions. Possibly not! Either way, a strategy for solving present day crises within the sciences arises within these pages. Ailed, as they are, through being unable to break free from the chains of false atheistic and materialistic assumptions. To conclude, Sabden’s book shows us a better ideological path to follow, whilst suggesting ways to actually develop a world civilization.

Abduali Kaydar – academician of NAS RK Kakishev Tursunbek –
critic, scientist, academician Mekemtas Myrzahmetyly – academician

WWW.OCAMAGAZINE.COM #23 AUTUMN 2016