Saturday, 4 May 2013

Rabindranath Tagore – Saviour of the Tantric Temples of Khajuraho

Rabindranath Tagore (born 7th May 1861)
a Bengali poet, novelist and painter - best known for being the first non-European to be awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1913 with his book Gitanjali, Song Offerings.
Perhaps few people know that it was Tagore who intervened when “pious” Hindu vandals supported by the father of modern India, Mahatma Gandhi, decided that the erotic sculptures of the temples were deeply distressing and incompatible with the true spirit of Hinduism.
Gandhi gave his blessing to a band of fanatic Hindu vandals who wanted to destroy the walls of the temples, clean from the ‘indecent and embarrassing' affronts to their ignorant notions about Indian culture.
It took the intervention of no less than Rabrindranth Tagore who wrote to Gandhi, outraged, explaining that this was a national treasure and could not be so cavalierly demolished because some people were uncomfortable.
OSHO: "Khajuraho is a dream. And Mahatma Gandhi wanted it buried under earth so nobody could be tempted by the beautiful statues.
We are grateful to Rabindranath Tagore who prevented Gandhi from doing such a thing. He said, ‘Leave the temples as they are....’ He was a poet and he could understand their mystery.” (from: Glimpses of a Golden Childhood, Ch.4, session 4. Published : 1985)