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Faculty Seminar | Reflections on Rabindranath Tagore’s Religion of Man


Conference Hall, Ground Floor, Training Centre, NLSIU


Wednesday, July 12, 2023, 4:00 pm

This week faculty seminar on 12 July, 2023 will feature a discussion on the paper titled ‘Reflections on Rabindranath Tagore’s Religion of Man’ by  Prof. (Dr.) Rinku Lamba.


“Charles Taylor’s scholarship on the social imaginary of the modern west — in terms of a vision of moral order anchored in notions of equality, economy, and self-government, as well as a conception of the public sphere — is important for many reasons. It illustrates a ‘cultural’ approach to comprehend modernity, which Taylor himself endorses, as compared to an ‘a cultural’ understanding of modernity that views the phenomenon as linked predominantly to material changes in society that can be replicated in different parts of the world wherever similar material changes are ushered. Further, and consistent with ideas about multiple and alternative modernities, Taylor’s work inspires interrogations of the contents of the social imaginaries that sustain modernity in other jurisdictions, including India. Such interrogations will entail studies of doctrines, symbols and embodied practices all of which, according to Taylor, are sites for comprehending the vision of moral order that anchors a social imaginary.

To contribute to the emerging scholarship about the vision of moral order that anchors Indian modernity, and this paper is part of that broader task. Admittedly, the task involved requires work by a whole community of scholars, and I cannot pretend to provide some overarching answer to questions about what constitutes that vision of moral order. But I wish to focus on the political thought of Rabindranath Tagore – as a doctrinal site – to contribute to the larger task of delineating the particular understandings of religion (with respect to themes of hierarchy, self-rule, independence, state-society relationship) that anchor the vision of moral order underpinning the social imaginaries of modern India.”