Dui Pakhi.. Tagore’s Two Birds.. Two Sides of the Mind

Meeting of our Two Sides

Sujatha R
3 min readFeb 3, 2023

There is freshness in the air.. The simple words and melody strike a flurry of emotions and visuals. And deep within is many an inspiration from ancient wisdom.. Of Valimiki, Upanishads an Kalidasa.. That is Tagore..

I was watching a few interesting videos on Indian Languages in India In Pixels and stumbled upon Tagore’s Do Pakhi..

https://youtu.be/jST8hP9is-E

The Two birds have a dialog. The free bird wanting to explore the forest.. The Caged bird wanting the comfort of shelter.

And it could seem like the Two sides of our mind that we are quite unaware of.. A snippet of the translation..

The caged bird was in a golden cage, 
The bird from the woods in the forest,
No one knew how, one day they got together,
Was it designed by the heaven!

The Bird from the Woods said, "Hello Bird in the Cage,
Let's go to the forest together",
The Bird in the Cage answered, " Come here, Bird from the Woods,
And live snug in the cage here".

The Bird from the Woods said, "No,
I don't want to be chained",
The Bird in the Cage replied, " Alas!
How can I fly to the forest? '

...

https://www.poemhunter.com/poem/dui-pakhi-two-birds-translation-from-rabindranath-tagore/

There is a Side in us that is quite a Hustler.. Ready to explore.. Ready to face challenges.. Brave.. Ferocious.. Logical.. The Sun kinds..

There is a Side in us that is Compassionate and Serene.. Ready to Nurture and Shelter.. Creative and Intuitive. The Moon kinds..

Sometimes there is conflict in both the Sides. And when both the forces join hands, there is flow of Synergy Abundance, Productivity and Bliss.

Like the Poet Surdas says.. The Bird flies distant miles in the daylight only to return to it’s nest at Night.

And the idea of Shiva and Parvati representing these two facets

Ardhanarieshwari in artpal.com

In the lores of Yoga wisdom is the Left and Right breathing.. The Sun and Moon.. Agni and Soma.. Pingala and Ida..

And Pranayama is all about balancing the Left and Right breathing and hence balancing and connecting the Right and Left minds.

The symbol of modern medicine takes the same idea. The Chinese call it Yin and Yan..

In the words of Bhagawad Gita: Samatvam Uchyate Yoga.. Yoga calls for this Balance and Poise. And Yoga brings Excellence in Action.. Yoga Karmasu Kaushalam.

Some recognizable words from the Song..

Boner pakhi.. forest bird

Kaachar pakhi.. golden caged bird

Bahire boshi boshi.. boner gaane.. sitting sitting outside, it sang the forest tunes..

Kanchir pakhi.. gahe sikhar gaane.. The caged birds sang the taught notes.. (seekha hua)

Khanchar phanke phanke.. poroshe mukhe mukhe.. neerobe chokhe chokhe.. They petted each other with their beaks(mukh).. They silently stared at each other (chok)

Dujone keho kare.. bujhite nahi pare.. bujhate nare aponaay

Dono kyaa kare.. ek dusre ko samaj nahi paaye.. naa hi apne aap ko samaj paaye

I was telling my close Bengali friend of college days.. The seeds of Robindro Sangeet is all over their hearts. How fortunate.. With a little reflection, one can bloom the flowers and find a deeper connection.

I get reminded of Carl Sagan’s saying “For small creatures such as we, the vastness is bearable only through love”

My immersion with Tagore’s work.. Decoding Bengali and sensing poetic patterns.. https://myriadpatterns.medium.com/ravindra-sangeet-bangla-960716e78f4

A picture that made me think of our 2 sides..
https://myriadpatterns.medium.com/is-the-shoe-grey-or-pink-16a37e600aad

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Sujatha R

I write.. I weave.. I walk.. कवयामि.. वयामि.. यामि.. Musings on Music, Linguistics & Patterns