देवेन्द्रनाथ ठाकुर -जन्म: (15 मई, 1817)

May 15, 2017

देवेन्द्रनाथ ठाकुर अथवा 'देवेन्द्रनाथ टैगोर' ( जन्म: 15 मई, 1817 – मृत्यु: 19 जनवरी, 1905) कलकत्ता निवासी श्री द्वारकानाथ ठाकुर के पुत्र थे, जो प्रख्यात विद्वान और धार्मिक नेता थे। अपनी दानशीलता के कारण उन्होंने 'प्रिंस' की उपाधि प्राप्त की थी। पिता से उन्होंने ऊँची सामाजिक प्रतिष्ठा तथा ऋण उत्तराधिकार में प्राप्त किया था। नोबेल पुरस्कार विजेता रबीन्द्रनाथ ठाकुर देवेंद्रनाथ ठाकुर के पुत्र थे।




नेतृत्व क्षमता
पिता के ऋण का भुगतान उन्होंने बड़ी ही ईमानदारी के साथ किया (जो कि उस समय असाधारण बात थी) और अपनी विद्वता, शालीनता, श्रेष्ठ चरित्र तथा सांस्कृतिक क्रियाकलापों में योगदान के द्वारा उन्होंने टैगोर परिवार की सामाजिक प्रतिष्ठा को और भी ऊपर उठाया। वे ब्रह्म समाज के प्रमुख सदस्य थे, जिसका 1843 ई. से उन्होंने बड़ी सफलता के साथ नेतृत्व किया। 1843 ई. में उन्होंने 'तत्वबोधिनी पत्रिका' प्रकाशित की, जिसके माध्यम से उन्होंने देशवासियों को गम्भीर चिन्तन हृदयगत भावों के प्रकाशन के लिए प्रेरित किया। इस पत्रिका ने मातृभाषा के विकास तथा विज्ञान एवं धर्मशास्त्र के अध्ययन की आवश्यकता पर बल दिया और साथ ही तत्कालीन प्रचलित सामाजिक अंधविश्वासों व कुरीतियों का विरोध किया तथा ईसाई मिशनरियों द्वारा किये जाने वाले धर्मपरिवर्तन के विरुद्ध कठोर संघर्ष छोड़ दिया।


'महर्षि' उपाधि
राजा राममोहन राय की भाँति देवेन्द्रनाथ जी भी चाहते थे कि देशवासी, पाश्चात्य संस्कृति की अच्छाइयों को ग्रहण करके उन्हें भारतीय परम्परा, संस्कृति और धर्म में समाहित करें। वे हिन्दू धर्म को नष्ट करने के नहीं, उसमें सुधार करने के पक्षपाती थे। वे समाज सुधार में 'धीरे चलो' की नीति पसन्द करते थे। इसी कारण उनका केशवचन्द्र सेन तथा उग्र समाज सुधार के पक्षपाती ब्राह्मासमाजियों, दोनों से ही मतभेद हो गया। केशवचन्द्र सेन ने अपनी नयी संस्था 'नवविधान' आरम्भ की। उधर उग्र समाज सुधार के पक्षपाती ब्रह्मा समाजियों ने आगे चलकर अपनी अलग अलग संस्था 'साधारण ब्रह्म समाज' की स्थापना की। देवेन्द्रनाथ जी के उच्च चरित्र तथा आध्यात्मिक ज्ञान के कारण सभी देशवासी उनके प्रति श्रद्धा भाव रखते थे और उन्हें 'महर्षि' सम्बोधित करते थे।


शान्ति निकेतन
देवेन्द्रनाथ धर्म के बाद शिक्षा प्रसार में सबसे अधिक रुचि लेते थे। उन्होंने बंगाल के विविध भागों में शिक्षा संस्थाएँ खोलने में मदद की। उन्होंने 1863 ई. में बोलपुर में एकांतवास के लिए 20 बीघा ज़मीन ख़रीदी और वहाँ गहरी आत्मिक शान्ति अनुभव करने के कारण उसका नाम 'शान्ति निकेतन' रख दिया और 1886 ई. में उसे एक ट्रस्ट के सुपुर्द कर दिया। यहीं पर बाद में उनके स्वनामधन्य पुत्र रवीन्द्रनाथ टैगोर ने विश्वभारती की स्थापना की।


धर्म व शिक्षा प्रसार
देवेन्द्रनाथ जी मुख्य रूप से धर्म सुधारक तथा शिक्षा प्रसार में रुचि तो लेते ही थे, देश सुधार के अन्य कार्यों में भी पर्याप्त रुचि लेते थे। 1851 ई. में स्थापित होने वाले 'ब्रिटिश इंडियन एसोसियेशन' का सबसे पहला सेक्रेटरी उन्हें ही नियुक्त किया गया था। इस एसोसियेशन का उद्देश्य संवैधानिक आंदोलन के द्वारा देश के प्रशासन में देशवासियों को उचित हिस्सा दिलाना था। 19वीं शताब्दी में जिन मुट्ठी भर शिक्षित भारतीयों ने आधुनिक भारत की आधारशिला रखी, उनमें उनका नाम सबसे शीर्ष पर रखा जाएगा।


Debendranath Tagore  (15 May 1817 – 19 January 1905) was a Hindu philosopher and religious reformer, active in the Brahmo Samaj ("Society of Brahman," also translated as "Society of God"), which aimed to reform the Hindu religion and way of life. He was one of the founders in 1848 of the Brahmo religion, which today is synonymous with Brahmoism.


A Bengali, he was born in Shilaidaha. His father was the industrialist Dwarkanath Tagore.


Debendranath was a deeply religious man. His movement, the Brahmo Samaj, was formed in 1843 by merging his Tattwabodhini Sabha with the Brahmo Sabha, ten years after the death of Raja Ram Mohan Roy, founder of the Brahmo Sabha. The Brahmo Sabha had fallen away from its original aims and practices, as stated in its Trust deed of Brahmo Sabha. However, Tagore aimed to revive the importance of this deed.


Although Debendranath was deeply spiritual, he managed to continue to maintain his worldly affairs – he did not renounce his material possessions, as some Hindu traditions prescribed, but instead continued to enjoy them in a spirit of detachment. His considerable material property included estates spread over several districts of Bengal; most famously, the Santiniketan estate near Bolpur in the Birbhum district, a later acquisition, where his eldest son Dwijendranath Tagore set up his school.


Debendranath was a master of the Upanishads and played no small role in the education and cultivation of the faculties of his sons.


Debendranath Tagore was born to the Tagore family in Jorasanko, popularly known as Jorasanko Thakur Bari in North-western Kolkata, which was later converted into a campus of the Rabindra Bharati University. The Tagore family, with over three hundred years of history, has been one of the leading families of Calcutta, and is regarded as a key influence during the Bengal Renaissance.The family has produced several persons who have contributed substantially in the fields of business, social and religious reformation, literature, art and music.


As son of Dwarkanath Tagore, a close friend of Ram Mohan Roy, Debendranath came early into the influence of Brahmoism through the Brahmo Sabha, a reformist movement in Hinduism formulating as Adi Dharma (Original Dharma) what it considered as the original pristine principles of Hinduism corrupted over time.


But even earlier, deeply affected in childhood by the death of his grandmother to whom he was greatly attached, Debendranath was drawn to religion and began contemplating the meaning and nature of life. He commenced a deep study of religious literature, particularly the Upanishads. In 1839, with tutelage from Pandit Ram Chandra Vidyabageesh, a leader of the Brahmo Sabha, he formed his own active Tattwabodhini Sabha (Truthseekers' Association) to spread his new experiences and knowledge.


In 1843, Debendranath started the Tattwabodhini Patrika as mouthpiece of the Tattwabodhini Sabha. In the same year, he revived the Brahma Sabha, fallen in vigour and following since the death of Ram Mohan Roy in 1833. The Brahmo Sabha was formally absorbed into the Tattwabodhini Sabha and renamed as Calcutta Brahma Samaj. The day Pous 7 of the Bengali calendar is commemorated as the foundation day of the Samaj. The Patrika became the organ of the Samaj and continued publication till 1883.


In 1848, Debendranath codified the Adi Dharma Doctrine as Brahmo Dharma Beej (Seed of the Brahmo Dharma). In 1850, he published a book titled Brahmo Dharma enshrining the fundamental principles. These principles emphasise monotheism, rationality and reject scriptural infallibility, the necessity of mediation between man and God, caste distinctions and idolatry.


With the influence of Brahmoism under Debendranath spreading far and wide throughout India, he gathered reputation as a person of particular spiritual accomplishment and came to be known as Maharshi. His spiritual stature was confirmed by Sri Ramakrishna, the great Hindu sage of the 19th century who paid Debendranath a visit.{cn|date=October 2015} Mentioned in the Gospel of Ramakrishna - Abridged version from Page 347 to 350} Debendranath's roles in the Bengal renaissance and the reform and rejuvenation of Hindu religion are considerable.


n 1843, Debendranath Tagore became the leading force of the Brahmo Sabha, which he renamed to Brahmo Samaj. Debendranath wished to changed the goal of Brahmoism to act as a vehicle for theological and social renewal. In opposition to the founder of the Brahmo Movement under Rammohun Roy who expressed Unitarinism and Universalism, Debenranath wished to assert the cultural and theological primacy of Vedantic Hinduism. This change is likely due to increasing pressures from Christian propaganda 


Tributes
Sivanath Sastri has paid glowing tributes to Debendranath Tagore in History of the Brahmo Samaj:


Maharshi Debendranath Tagore was one of the greatest religious geniuses this country ever produced. He was truly a successor of the great rishis of old. His nature was essentially spiritual. ... He was a devout follower of the Upanishadic rishis, but was no pantheist on that account. Debendranath in spite of his real sainthood never put on the grab or habits of sadhu or saint. His piety was natural, habitual and modest. He hated or shunned all display of saintliness...



He was a true and living embodiment of that teaching of the Gita where it is said: “A truly wise man is never buffeted by his trials and tribulations, does not covet pleasure, and is free from attachment, fear and anger; the same is a muni.” Maharshi Debendranath was a true muni in that respect. He calmly bore all; even the greatest griefs of life. After having done his duty, he quietly rested, regardless of consequences.


Though personally not much in favour of the idea of female emancipation, he was one of the first men in Bengal to open the door of higher education to women. Valuing conscience in himself, he valued it in all about him. Religious life was growth to him; not an intellectual assent but a spiritual influence that pervaded and permeated life; consequently, he had not much sympathy with merely reformatory proceedings.
From the west he took only two ideas: first, the idea of fidelity to God; secondly the idea of public worship; in all other things he was oriental. His idea was to plant the Samaj in India, as the Hindu mode of realising universal theism, leaving the other races to realise that universal faith according to their traditional methods.


Bibliography
Bengali
Bangla Bhashay Sanskrita Vyakaran (1838, now lost)
Brahmodharma (1st & 2nd parts, 1849)
Atmatattvavidya (1852)
Brahmodharmer Mat O Biswas (1860)
Paschim Pradesher Durbhiksha Upashame Sahajya Sangraharthe Brahmo Samajer Baktrita (1861)
Brahmodharmer Byakhyan, Part I (1861)
Kalikata Brahmosamajer Baktrita (1862)
Brahmo Bibaha Pranali (1864)
Brahmo Samajer Panchabingshati Batsarer Parikshita Brittanta (1864)
Brahmodharmer Anusthan-Paddhati (1865)
Bhowanipur Brahmavidyalayer Upadesh (1865–66)
Brahmodharmer Byakhyan, Part II (1866)
Masik Brahmo Samajer Upadesh (A collection of eighteen lectures delivered during 1860–67)
Brahmodharmer Byakhyan, Epilogue (1885)
Gyan O Dharmer Unnati (1893)
Paralok O Mukti (1895)
Atyojivani (1898)
Patravali (A collection of letters written during 1850–87)
English
Vedantic Doctrines Vindicated (1845)
Autobiography (Translated from the original Bengali work, Atmajivani, by Satyendranath Tagore, 1914)