8 Historical Figures We All Have Something to Learn From

Pop Culture

September 20, 2021

Inspiration is an art. Not everyone has the potential to inspire and not everyone has the capacity to get inspired. It is in human nature to find a close connection and relation with those in whom we see a reflection of ourselves, our everyday struggles and emotions.

We remain quite content in the knowledge that we are not alone in the battle we fight, situations we go through, someone has already been there and done that. Inspiration takes birth from this bud of comfort and courage that we find in a person. Here, are 8 famous personalities who have inspired us and is continuing to inspire us in our everyday life through their words and works.

1. Diana, Princess of Wales

Diana, Princess of Wales has not only impacted my life but of millions of others around the world. The legacy that she has left behind is the source of strength and inspiration for so many who seem to have found their comfort in her works. She not only acted as an invisible pillar of strength for me but also helped me find my voice.

Crowned as the “People’s Princess” she has conquered a place in everyone’s hearts, and quite obliviously touched thousands of lives generations after generations. She was the epitome of kindness, love, tenderness. While being the most down to earth international icon of all times she also taught us that falsification and oppression are not to be tolerated. She was everything that the world needed today to heal, had she been here the world would have certainly been a much better and livelier place.

2. Ashapurna Devi

Ashapurna Devi was an Indian author born in Kolkata. She posed as the voice of all the women who were shackled by the rigid patriarchal Indian society, where women were oppressed and dominated and their voices went unheard. She was the harbinger of modernism amidst those hushed murmers.

Prioritizing education, she emphasised on how knowledge can outlaw dominance. Her novels Pratham Pratishruti (First Promise), Subarnalata and Bakul Katha picturized the lives of three generations of women born under oppression, who made their way out into the world through their determination to escape the regiment that demeaned them since time immemorial.

Her characters, mostly women, were strong, unnerving and had a passion to bring about change in the minds of all those who were afraid to embrace it. Through her words the world can still see the evolution and the struggle of women in the early Indian society.

In short, she was a legacy herself.

3. Franz Kafka

Here I might appear a bit biased for he is one of my favorite authors of all time. I have seldom connected with someone as much as him in such a spiritual level. When I first laid my eyes on “Metamorphosis” I was stunned as to how much his words resonated with me and the world.

Reading him felt like I was reading a reflection of life around me. Surely the saying “What Dante and Shakespeare were for their ages Kafka is for ours” cannot be any truer. Kafka predicted what we are going through.

Kafka depicted a pre conceived picture of modernism and how it will impact us making him a forseer of the fatal future. His way of connecting with people is an art. His sense of making people realize their space and time in which they breathe is something quite out of the box.

4. Jo March (Lead Character “Little Women” by Louisa May Alcott)

There is something about Jo March, something about her that makes me think that we are so alike each other. Josephine ‘Jo’ March is the lead heroine of Louisa May Alcott’s classic novel “Little Women”. We can perhaps inevitably find our “twin” in one of the characters from the book.

While Jo might be a tom boyish, outspoken, stubborn and ambitious woman, she also taught us that at heart we can be a little feeble. She taught me that it is alright to be vulnerable; it is alright embrace failure and fight for victory. She was a writer and writers I believe are born psychologists, learning people and getting to know them beyond what they are. She is the inspiration behind my words.

5. Rabindranath Tagore

I mean, is there something that we didn’t learn from him? He recieved the Nobel Prize in Literature for his book "Gitanjali" composed of a series of poems that were offered to God. Crowned as “Kobiguru” and "Biswakobi" he indeed was and always will be the king of words.

Till date he remains the most contemporary poet and author the world has ever seen. He was the predictor of society, a man with so little education but with knowledge that will outlive generations to come. Reading him is synonymous to feeding yourself with all the cherishable goodness that the world remains deprived of now.

He not only taught us values, but he also taught us life from different perspectives. Through his short stories he depicted emotions, feelings and thoughts like never before, he made those simple terms such divine that reading him everyone one will feel a sense of calmness of having discovered themselves coupled with the satisfaction that life is a game for all.

Besides, who could possibly write a story from a village road's perspective? Well, he could.

6. Gautama Buddha

In His words I have found great peace and a profound outlook on life. Amidst the cacophony of the modern world he is a great retreat to solace. He has the power calm a troubled mind and strengthen a weak soul.

His teachings have given me great courage. His path to do away with sufferings and lead a life of peace and simplicity is quite what we need to focus on today, the world is drowned in suffering for their ever rising needs and desires, to do away with it is to find enlightenment in this mortal realm. sGautama Buddha through his lessons has endlessly tried to make the world a better place for people to coexist, but we seem to have forgotten a great lot of it and ended up in this chaos of a world.

7. Mother Teresa

The epitome of all the goodness we have ever come across in life was embedded in Mother Teresa. She was in every sense the mother of the motherless and the lover of the unloved. To call her a philanthropist might just not be enough to define her divine self.

Her warmth, kindness and love remains unmatched till date. She crossed all boundaries and loved people despite who they were and where they came from. She taught us anything and everything about caring for people who are less privileged and also the people who seek help. I will go on writing and preaching endlessly about her greatness forever. Although I never met her personally, my father did and recounting his memories as a toddler he says to have felt the divine vibration on having touched her feet to seek her blessings! (how lucky he was!)

8. Swami Vivekananda

Swami Vivekananda was an Indian monk and the greatest philosopher whose famous Chicago speech is known by many, especially when he addresed the conference as “Dear sisters and brothers of America” which electrified the audience followed by astoundingly a huge round of applause. He never differentiated amongst people instead considered as a part of his family. He won hearts with his take on life and realizations. . He preached how purity, patience and perseverance overcomes all obstacles, he also suggested taking courage and working on.

He faced great criticism from the then Hindu society but that did not stop him from diminishing hatred and spreading love amisdt all. Throughout his life he worked towards the betterment of humanity all over the world and is still divinely worshipped by many.

People like them don't actually die, they just leave their mortal bodies but continue to act as the world's guardian angels. It is for them that humanity still persists even after all the turmoil the world goes through every day.

Debadrita Dey
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Writer since Apr, 2021 · 3 published articles

Debadrita is an enthusiastic pen-err, reader, writer and dreamer. She has an ardent passion to change the world with her words with a keen interest on comparative analysis of literary, cultural and political theories. To her the world is a compilation of dreams! Dreamers, dream on!