Linked with Abdullah Jafar Ibn Mohammad Rudaki, Persia/Tajikistan (859-941).
By K.N. Pandita
My parents put me to Farsi-Tajik studies from early childhood. My uncle was a conventional type of man. Whenever I opened my books for study, he would begin the lesson with this verse:
Danish andar dil chirag-e rausahn ast
Waz hameh bad bar tane tu jaushan ast
This was my first meeting with Rudaki. I was too young to understand the deep meaning of the verse. My uncle never told me anything beyond reciting the verse.
I grew up in an atmosphere steeped in Farsi-Tajik cultural ethos, and then became a regular student of this language and literature in the college and at the university. Obviously, I had to know more of Rudaki and other bright stars of Farsi-Tajik literary firmament and in detail.
Rudaki was the celebrated father of Farsi-Tajik poetry. My interest grew and also my respect for him when I read that he had composed more than a million verses and Kalileh wa Dimneh in verse, which unfortunately is lost to us. It must have been a tremendous effort. To my great joy I could now realise the deep meaning in Rudaki’s profound verse so often and so long spoken by my uncle during my boyhood. This was my second interaction with the celebrity.