Shri H.N.Dastur, Bhavan's Executive Secretary gave a heart warming extempore speech on Kulapati Munshi on July 14, 2012 at Bhavan's Bangalore Kendra.
Indian Post issued a COMMEMORATIVE STAMP on Dr. K.M Munshi on December 30, 1988. The stamp depicts K.M. Munshi and a tree, symbolising his interest in the Van Mahotsav. The First Day Cover (FDC, which are issued with every COMMEMORATIVE STAMP) shows him against the background of the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan.
Dates and Events of Munshi's Life
Glimpses of the Multifaceted Personality Kulapati K.M.MunshiView The Photos →
Once Swami Vivekananda was requested to talk about Bhagawan Ramakrishna, his guru, at a public meeting. He was horrified; he said that it was just not possible.
When persisted, Vivekananda unfolded the story of a sculptor, who was world class, and who could create a thing so beautifully that there would hardly be anyone parallel to him in the world. He was once assigned to carve out an idol of Lord Shiva. Now, he was so proud of his creative ability, that he went about his task with abandon. When he finished the work, he stepped back to view his work and found to his horror that instead of Lord Shiva the figure was that of a monkey! Because the sculptor had no devotion, he was short of creative spirituality in him.
Swami Vivekananda said: "I am incapable of speaking on Ramakrishna'. I have the same feeling about talking about Munshi. He was not an individual; he was a phenomenon.
Dr. Kanhaiyalal Maneklal Munshi was versatile and multifaceted. If a person in one field of human endeavour reaches the peak of excellence, we call him or her great. M. S. Subbalakshmi, Ustad Fiyaz Khan Saab or Michelangelo or Shakespeare, all are great; but here was a person who reached the top, the peak of excellence in several fields of human endeavour. You won't find a parallel to this type of a person who reaches the peak in several directions, the very acme of excellence.
How can I explain it? Imagine a horse race where most of the riders are riding one horse each, but can one imagine a rider riding ten horses and all of them reaching the winning post? Such a rider was Kanhaiyalal Maneklal Munshi.
He was born 125 years ago in a small town of Bharuch in South Gujarat. He was a descendent of Bhrugu Rishi and was proud of his lineage, this spiritual treasure of our Sanskriti was in his veins. His mother strengthened his faith and told him stories from the epics and puranas.
Child Munshi was a dreamer, he would dream and dream and dream and lived in the world of Lord Krishna and Veda Vyasa and characters of Ramayana and Mahabharata.
In his later life, Munshi said: "The best period of my life was my childhood because I never came down to earth: I was always living in the world of these great people".
Actually, among the builders and founders of modern independent India, those who emerged around Gandhi, there were only three dreamers – actual dreamers. One was Gandhi himself. He dreamt of a world and not merely of India, a world without violence, a world without any type of rift between man and man, a world of love and compassion.
The second was Nehru, he dreamed of an India strong and united and fully democratic and playing a very important role in the world, a world player.
And the third was Munshi who dreamed of cultural renaissance ahead of even freedom of the country. He dreamed of taking out the treasures from the spiritual heritage of our country, connected with the past, modified them to suit the modern condition, taking pride in the past, living in the present and preparing for the future. That was his dream.
When he became a teenager, one piece of his mind, he wrote, was inclined to translate these dreams into reality, bit by bit out of his mind. His first success came when he was only 19 years of age. He was a student of Baroda College when he felt that Baruch should have a free library for young students as well as the public of Baruch. Munshi had a great acumen. When he went to anybody and made a demand for a good cause, most of the time he would succeed. So 19-year old Munshi succeeded in building a free public library to which he gave the name Dadabhai Naoroji Library.
In the Galaxy of eminent men of India, Kanhaiyalal Maneklal Munshi is a shining star that still beckons humanity to the path of duty and dharma.Read on →
The Bhavan and Kulapati Munshi are synonymous. The Bhavan, his lengthened shadow, is the vibrant symbol of the continuing modern Indian renaissance which Raja Ram Mohan Roy pioneered in Bengal in the 19th century.Read on →
Just a glimpse of some of the prominent books authored by Munshiji.