B.Com General – 3rd Semester
Subject Name: Language – General English
Subject code: BCC 301
Spring Drive 2013
4 credits (60 marks)
Answer the following questions. Each question carries 10 marks. 1. Our world is full of miseries at every turn. What is Swami Vivekananda’s cure for all human ailments? Discuss in detail. 10 marks
In a life-span of only 39 years, Swami Vivekananda, who spread the message of India's spiritual heritage across the world, battled several health problems all along and no less than 31 diseases and ailments.
'The Monk as Man' by renowned Bengali writer Shankar lists insomnia, liver and kidney diseases, malaria, migraine, diabetes and heart ailments as some of the 31 health problems that the Swami faced in the course of his life.
Shankar describes Swami Vivekananda's health problems using a sanskrit quote 'shariram byadhimandiram' --- the body is the temple of diseases.
Ironically, Vivekananda used to emphasise greatly on physical strength and is known for the shocking statement 'Better to play football than read the Gita'.
One of the perennial problems that Vivekananda lived with was chronic insomnia and in a letter to Shashi Bhushan Ghosh dated May 29, 1897, he confided "I never in my life could sleep as soon as I got into bed."
The previous year, Vivekananda seemed to have written to his 'dhira mata' (Sara Bull) from New York complaining about his lack of sleep. "My health has nearly broken down. I have not slept even one night soundly in New York since I came ... I wish I could go to the bottom of the sea and have a good, long sleep."
It is also known that Vivekananda used to suffer from diabetes like his father and at that time suitable drugs were unavailable.
Shankar writes that Vivekananda had tried different modes of treatment ranging from allopathic, homoeopathic to ayurvedic and had also taken advice from all kinds of quasi-medical experts from various countries.
He narrates that in the summer of 1887, Vivekananda (whose real name was Narendranath Dutta) had fallen very ill due to overstrain and lack of food.
During this period, he also suffered from gallstones, and acute diarrhoea. Later, during the same summer, he came down with typhoid and problems in the urinary tract.
"Narendranath's abdominal pains were a source of great anxiety," Shankar says.
Shankar wonderfully chronicles the various medical problems Swami Vivekananda faced during his stint as a wandering monk in the country and across the world, and why he cut short his journey in Cairo, Egypt, to return to India.
It was to French operatic soprano Rosa Emma Calvet that Vivekandanda had declared in Egypt that he would die on July 4.
"Swami Vivekananda's eyes filled with tears. He said he wanted to return to his country to die, to be with his gurubhais," Shankar wrote.
The fateful evening of July 4, 1902, Vivekananda passed away following a third heart attack, completing 39 years, five months and 24 days.
(Answers for 10 mark questions should not exceed more than 400 words.) 2. What is the theme of the poem Dover Beach? What poetic devices have been used by Arnold to present this theme effectively? (5+5=10 marks)
Ans-In Stefan Collini's opinion, "Dover Beach" is a difficult poem to analyze, and some of its passages and metaphors have become so well known that they are hard to see with "fresh eyes". Arnold begins with a naturalistic and detailed nightscape of the beach at Dover in which auditory imagery plays a significant role ("Listen! you hear the grating roar"). The beach, however, is bare, with only a hint of humanity in a light that "gleams and is gone". Reflecting the traditional notion that the poem was written during Arnold's honeymoon (see composition section), one critic notes that "the speaker might be talking to his bride".
The sea is calm to-night.
The tide is full, the moon...
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