Friday, August 15, 2008

Where the mind is without fear .....

This day in 1947, India gained her independence from more than 300 years of British Rule. Also on this day, the subcontinent was divided into 2 countries on a religious basis, and 8 million people had to leave their homes and relocate. It was day to rejoice but unfortunately freedom came at a price that summer in 1947.

Today, after so many years it is still a day to realize how lucky we are to be free, makers of our own destiny to be a sovereign democratic people. But it is also a day to look deeply ourselves and consider our achievements. Of what we could be. Of what we are capable of. Are we today what was dreamt by those selfless people so many decades ago, giving their lives for a free India, for a free world ? Their hopes to gift their children a world where they can walk with heads held high ?

Freedom is just not about an external entity, it is also freedom of our minds, freedom from within ............

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 (Gitanjali)

Original in Bangla

Chitta jetha bhoyshunyo, Uchcha jetha shir
Gyan jetha mukto, jetha griher prachir
Apan prangantoley dibash sharbari
Basudharey rakhey nai khondo khudro kori
Jetha bakya hridayer utshomukh hotey
Uchchhashia uthey, jetha nirbarito srotey
deshey deshey dishey dishey kormodhara dhaay
ojosro shohosrobidho choritarthotaay
Jetha tuchchho acharer morubalurashi
Bicharer srotophol pheleynai grashi
Pourusherey oreni shotodha, Nityo jetha
tumi shorbo kormo chinta anander neta
Nijo hostey nirdoy aghaat kori, Pito,
Bharaterey shei shorgey koro jagroto .

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