রবীন্দ্রনাথ ঠাকুর (Part-2)

Monika Jaman
Published on Feb 27, 2023

Seeing Rabindranath Tagore's disinterest in the conventional education of the country, Majda Satyendranath proposed to send him to Billet to study barristery. Rabindranath went to England with Satyendranath Tagore in September 1878. There he studied for a while at a public school in Brighton and later at University College London. However, this reading is not complete. After a year and a half stay, he returned to the country. During this year and a half, he deeply observed the society and life of that country. Evidence of this can be found in his Europe-Expatriate letter (1881) published in Bharti. Although Rabindranath had no degree or training from England, he found a way to develop his talent there. With infinite curiosity about the music of that country, he studied on his own. As a result, he wrote the ballad Valmikipratibha (1881) on his return to the country. In it he mixed western tunes with written songs. Valmiki Pratibha performed on the occasion of Thakurbari's 'Vidvajjan Samagam'. Rabindranath Tagore himself played the role of Valmiki. His niece Pratibha played the role of Saraswati. Rabindranath Tagore's first performance was in the role of Alikbabu in Jyotirindranath Tagore's play Aan karma ar karbon na. From the time of writing Valmiki Prativa, the poet concentrated entirely on song and poetry. Later he composed Sandhya Sangeet (1882) and Prabhat Sangeet (1883). The feeling of this period is a memorable event in the poet's life; He expressed it in his biography. At that time he lived with Jyotirindranath in the Sadar Street house. One day, at the moment of sunrise, a divine inspiration suddenly awakened in him, as a result of which the world, nature and man - everything seemed to flood his eyes with a universal stream of joy. This miraculous feeling is expressed in his famous poem '

All of a sudden, after being freed from the self-centered world, the poet came to the world of people. This is where Rabindrapratibha's genius really shines. He composed the poems Picture and Song (1884), Prakriti Pratishod (1884), Kardi and Komal (1886), Maya Khel (1888) and Mansi (1890). Also wrote prose, criticism, novels etc. His first two novels Bouthakurani Hat (1883) and Rajarshi (1887) were written at this time.

On December 9, 1883, Rabindranath Tagore got married to Mrinalini Devi Ray Chowdhury. She is the daughter of Benimadhav Roy Chowdhury of Khulna, Bangladesh. Rabindranath and Mrinalini Devi had two sons and three daughters. Shortly after the marriage, some of the responsibility of his father's immense work fell on Rabindranath Tagore. He was the editor of Maharshi's Adi Brahmo Samaj. There were various doubts and uncertainties in the Brahmo society. During the Calcutta religious agitation of that era, young Rabindranath faithfully performed the duties assigned to him.

Later another chapter began in Rabindranath's life. In September 1890, he went abroad with Satyendranath for the second time for a month. After his return in October, he had to take over the maintenance of the estate on the orders of his father. Rabindranath's literary work found a different path through fulfilling this duty. All the poems, plays and novels he has written so far have been conceptual and purely imaginative. This time he got an opportunity to get closer to the people's life and observed the common life of the poor very closely. The poet comes down from the world of imagination to the direct life of the real world. As a result, the stories of the collection of stories, a wonderful wealth of Bengali literature, were written. Besides, the nature of North and East Bengal is beautifully reflected in his letters to his niece Indira Devi, which are compiled as Chhinnapatra and Chhinnapatravali. During this phase of his life, Rabindranath traveled to Shahjadpur, Patisar, Kaligram and Shilaidha in different places of Bangladesh on the occasion of zamindari supervision. A Kavitirtha was built in Shilaidha on this basis. Padma river, Baluchar, Kasban, sunrise-sunset, poor life and the mood of the common people while riding the boat on Padma Vaksha deeply moved the poet, which is reflected in the story and poetry of this episode.

Some critics have identified this period of Rabindra's life as a period of pursuit. Sadhana Patrika was published under the editorship of Dwijendranath's son Sudhindranath. This Sadhana Patrika spreads the full brilliance of Rabindra Prativa. He used to write short stories and articles in this newspaper. His educational views and political discussions were published in the magazine. The poet's views on education and politics were clear and strong. In his essay 'Manipulation of Education' (1892) he proposed to make Bengali the medium of education. Rabindranath always emphasized on constructive work. Knowing one's own race, society and country better, improving oneself with greater humane principles and not depending on the alms of a foreign ruler and becoming energized by self-power were the main points of his essay. In the essays of this period, his thoughts on various aspects of Bengali society emerged on the one hand, and on the other hand, the nature of India's heritage, its spiritual nature and the trend towards unity. Sonar Tari, Chitra, Chaitali, Kalpana, Kannika, Katha and Kahini Kabir's works of Shilaidah episode. In the poems of this episode, the real picture of life and sense of beauty, the story of great sacrifices of present time and ancient India, contemporary society and history have been revealed at the same time.

Rabindranath never engaged in active politics, but neither did he isolate himself from contemporary events; Rather, he was an elite man of independence. Rabindranath inaugurated the Congress conference held in Calcutta in 1896 by singing 'Bande Mataram'. The poet wrote his famous poem 'Shivaji Utsav' inspired by the Shivaji festival introduced by Balgangadhar Tilak in Maharashtra. He analyzed the political situation of the time in various articles published in Sadhana, Bangadarsan and Bharti. Rabindranath strongly opposed the partition of Bengal in 1905 during the Bengal Partition movement. In an article published in the Bangadarsan newspaper, the poet expressed his sentiments and composed a song commemorating the day of Rakhibandhan:

The soil of Bengal is the water of Bengal, the air of Bengal is the fruit of Bengal

May there be virtue, may there be virtue, may there be virtue O Lord.