Location: A library in Eastern India.
Point of Contact: The delicate pages of a sepia-toned book with the writings of Rabindranath Tagore.
Upon turning the pages of this fragile, fragmented but fervent book, I was awakened. Tagore lives through his words and really stays. He wants us to pray, to pledge, to lead a more fearless life. Indeed, “you can’t cross the sea merely by standing and staring at the water”. These words preserve the mind of a genius who wrote an alternate mythology, inspiring histories, tender poetry, mighty prose and an ideal contemporary.
“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 out 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 we began every day with these words, sure we’d have a mind but we’d have even bigger hearts. Perhaps, more courage, more brawn, lesser boundaries – upon ourselves and lands. As borders faded, we’d be united by our strengths rather than divided by our weaknesses. And even at our weakest, we’d see reason, find purpose and direction. Even at our weakest, we’d be free to act, to strive, to sweat and smile. That is all that matters. That is all that ever will.
The crumbliest hardcovers often have the hardiest lessons.
Tagore is a deep, hot spring. I’ve only just begun to sip…
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