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Rabindranath Tagore or Gurudev as he was popularly known was born in Calcutta on May7, 1861.
A renowned polymath, Tagore singlehandedly reshaped the regions literature and music.

Rabindranath Tagore
Tagore modernised Bengali art by spurning rigid classical forms and resisting linguistic strictures. His novels, stories, songs, dance-dramas, and essays spoke to topics political and personal. Gitanjali (Song Offerings),Gora (Fair-Faced) and Ghare-Baire (The Home and the World) are his best-known works, and his verse, short stories, and novels were acclaimed—or panned—for their lyricism, colloquialism, naturalism, and unnatural contemplation. His compositions were chosen by two nations as national anthems: India’s Jana Gana Mana and Bangladesh’s Amar Shonar Bangla.
In 1913, he became the first Indian to win the noble prize in Literature for “Geetanjali” and freed from the traditional models that were based on classical Sanskrit.

Free-verse translation by Tagore (Gitanjali, verse VII):

“My song has put off her adornments. She has no pride of dress and decoration. Ornaments would mar our union; they would come between thee and me; their jingling would drown thy whispers.”

“My poet’s vanity dies in shame before thy sight. O master poet, I have sat down at thy feet. Only let me make my life simple and straight, like a flute of reed for thee to fill with music.”

In 1919, followed by the Janiah Wala Bagh Massacre he returned his knighthood.

Early Life

Tagore began writing poetry when he was all of eight years old. He was 16-years-old when he released his first collection of poems under the name Bhanusimha, or Sun Lion. By 1877, he was writing short stories and dramas under his own name at the age of 16.

The youngest of 13 siblings, Tagore resented and avoided classroom schooling. His elder brother Hemendranath tutored and physically conditioned him through various sporting activities such as gymnastics, judo and wrestling apart from trekking. “Rabi” loathed formal education so much that he went to college, the local Presidency College, only for a single day.

Tagore began as a poet who blended spiritual and romantic notions in his quest to understand the human soul and the divine, he soon moved on to give voice to the minds of the colonised and oppressed people. This transformation is even reflected in his later works, so much so that WB Yeats who had propagated his works as that of a mystic poet in the West found it difficult to relate to them.

 

His 154th Birth anniversary celebrations around

the world –

1.)Slovenia, a country of just two million people in Central Europe, has planned multifarious ceremonies to mark the 154th birth anniversary of Rabindranath Tagore from May 7-12.

The Slovenian ministry of education, science and sport and the International Centre for Public Enterprise in Ljubljana will organize a concert, ‘Timeless Tagore’, in the Nobel laureate’s honour May 7, said the Indian embassy here.

The concert has been conceptualized by Rupa Chakravarti with ‘Triglav’, a group of Slovene musicians and dancer who have learned Rabindrasangeet and Rabindrik Nritya from her. An exhibition of Tagore’s art works, received from the National Gallery of Modern Art in New Delhi, will also be on display at the ministry.

On May 9, the Nobel laureate’s birthday, the mayor of Maribor will lead a memorial ceremony at Tagore’s bust donated by Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) in the second largest city of Slovenia.

An exhibition of Tagore’s paintings, received through the Consulate General of India in Milan, will also be inaugurated at Maribor’s municipal art gallery.

2.) The University of Philosophical research , Los Angeles, says : In celebration of the great poet and artist, Rabindranath Tagore, and particularly today, his 154th birthday, let us reflect upon the great wisdom he shared with us, “where the mind is without fear”.

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Aparna Deb

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I love people who get their fiction & Bollywood allusions right, but apart from that, I am a relatively normal person with happy feet attracting good vibes from everyone I meet. Loves reading Non-Fiction.
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