Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, (1888-1975) is universally recognized as modern India's greatest philosopher. He was also a statesman of distinction, and even compared to Plato's ideal of the philosopher-king. As a creative thinker and a distinguished interpreter of Indian though he philosophized in the true Indian tradition. His notion of religion was spiritual, and not institutional or denominational.
Born in the pilgrim soil of Tirutani (now in Andhra Pradesh), he imbibed lasting impression of India's Vedic heritage during his formative years. Starting with his first teaching appointment in the Department of Philosophy at Madras Presidency College in 1909, he quickly established his reputation, and in 1921 became George V. Professor of Philosophy in Calcutta University and the Spalding Professor of Eastern Religion and Ethics at Oxford University in 1936. In 1952 he accepted the office of India's first Vice President, and in 1962 assumed the office of the President of India.
He was knighted in 1931 and conferred the Bharat Ratna Award in 1954.
Dr. Radhakrishnan sketches the lives of fourteen individuals who have influenced India's life and culture significantly, and altered the course of its history. Among these are social reformers like Swami Dayanand and Raja Ram Mohan Roy, political thinkers and activists like Lala Lajpat Rai, Sardar Patel, Tilak and Gokhale, and a giant among scientists, Jagdis Bose.
All of them had one thing in common, they broke the barriers of tradition and normalcy, and strove for noble ideals
They dreamt, and had the courage and tenacity to turn their dreams into reality.
'They truly are great who testify to the truth in them and refuse to compromise, whatever the cost
' - Dr. S. Radhakrishnan
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