Tagore’s Religion of Man: A New Reading Session Begins

Today’s present age is beset by a littleness of thinking that is not disconnected from the profound loss of universality that once animated the cultural standards of healthier past ages. Individuals too often grope moment to moment for either survival or hedonistic pleasure while professionals and technicians who yearn to use their knowledge for the good often find themselves trapped in a small cage of compartmentalization.

PhDs are produced at greater rates than at any other time in history, and yet problems only multiply on every front threatening the very survival of the human species. The question can thus be asked: WHY such anomalies?

Why has our world, replete with educated people, and endowed with technologies capable of eliminating hunger, poverty, war and disease, not found the means needed to actualize this potential for good? Why the deficit of morally driven, creative ideas? Why has it become so rare to hear musicians with the creative power of Beethoven or scientists with the creative power of a Max Planck?

In 1930, the great poet and philosopher Rabindranath Tagore delivered a series of speeches at Oxford University with the intention of intervening on this foreseeable collapse into the moral and creative power of humankind. Tagore’s power of recognizing the intellectual/spiritual failure induced by the cancerous growth of empiricism, materialism, utilitarianism and egotism infesting society during this precarious intermezzo between two world wars, was located in his identification that there had been a severing of poetry from science, truth from poetry, and beauty from truth.

The totality of Tagore’s thesis contained in these lectures was published in the form of a 15 chapter book entitled “The Religion of Man” which takes the form of a sacred appraisal of the great cultures and religions of the earth from the standpoint of a scientist and poet hungering for the divine and eternal truths that lie behind the fleeting world of matter.

To access the full text of Tagore’s Religion of Man, CLICK HERE.

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