Study On Rabindranath Tagore Essay

509 WordsMar 23, 20123 Pages
Where The Mind is Without Fear -- Rabindranath Tagore (Poem #177) Where The Mind is Without Fear Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high; Where knowledge is free; Where the world has not been broken up into fragments by narrow domestic walls; Where words come out from the depth of truth; Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection; Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way into the dreary desert sand of dead habit; Where the mind is led forward by thee into ever-widening thought and action-- Into that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake. -- Rabindranath Tagore If you have been schooled in India, you couldn't possibly have not read this in some English textbook or the other. I have always been captivated by the simplicity and economy of this poem; how, through exquisite imagery, Tagore expresses such profound thoughts. If you find that it reads more like a prayer chant from a religious book, you won't be far from the truth: the original Bengali poem which Tagore himself translated as above, was titled "Prayer". Though this poem was chosen because today is the 52nd anniversary of India's independence, it is really a plea, not for the political independence that was being sought early this century when it was written, but for freedom from parochialness and dogma, a prayer that is perhaps as relevant today as it was then. Maybe human nature itself is such that it always turns once-refreshing paradigms into stale tradition, forcing a Tagore in every generation to thus complain. This poem is from Gitanjali, lit. Offering of Songs, published in English in 1910. Biography: Tagore, Rabindranath (1861-1941), Indian poet, philosopher, and Nobel laureate, was born in Calcutta, into a wealthy family. He began to write poetry as a child; his

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