Artists- a group of gifted people, who can understand, imagine and articulately imitate life. Different artists choose different media to let their imaginations and thoughts run through. While music is the preferred mode for some, others may prefer the proverbial mightier pen, still others like their feet to do the talking. But every once in a while, we see some artists break all norms and prove their mettle in more than one field. One such artist was Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore.
This legendary polymath used literary forms like poetry, drama, short stories as well as complex drama, music and art works to create innumerable incredible works of art which have remained relevant still today. Be it the profoundly sensitive, fresh and beautiful verses of his Gitanjali, for which he was honoured with the famed Nobel Prize in literature, or his simple short stories, Tagore knew how to weave magic with words. His work has covers each and every sentiment known to the human mind. Maybe this understanding of the complex human psychology was one of his many qualities which helped him pen down the National Anthem of not one, but two countries.
Tagore taught us that it is never too late to pursue your passion, or in his case passions. He took up painting and drawing at the age of sixty. This was after he had earned the Nobel Prize, which once again teaches us to follow our passions for reasons much different than the worldly ones.
Tagore wrote majorly in Bengali and even in English and contributed majorly in both the languages. While he modernised the Bengali language, he also added newer concepts to literature, by large. Tagore brought in the new concept of writing short stories. He started writing simple stories about the mundane day-to-day life using modern and lucid language. Before Tagore’s era, literature was considered only accessible to the intellectuals; his fresh approach made literature something to enjoy for people of all classes. Soon short stories and novels with simpler plots and language became a trend in the literary world.
Rabi Thakur, as he is still fondly called, understood the importance of interactive style of teaching. He loathed the formal style of education so much that he started a university, Vishwa Bharati, where classes are still held alfresco and teachers adopt a rather interactive approach.
Rabindranath Tagore was most definitely the ultimate hipster and a super-achiever. He was surrounded by his work till his last moments. How he achieved so much in a single lifetime deserves its own research and volumes. His sense of prevision and modern ideas can always been seen to be reflected in each of his works. To quote him, “in art, man reveals himself, and not his objects.”
Let us take a moment to recall this tremendously talented and the original hipster of old times, Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore.