Interaction with Literary Bedium Dr Rajen Baruah , USA
Dr Rajen Baruah always likes to be called himself as Literary Bedouin (সাহিত্যিক যাযাবৰ) (to borrow a term from H.G. Wells - whose home is the 'Great Outside' and whose reputation is his own name, he roams around the world and write on various topics of his interests). These are dictated by his love of Assam, his love of the North East, his love of India, his love of America, his love of the world and his love of life. Inspite of being away from Assam/ India for more than 40 years, his pursuit for Assamese literature, language is getting stronger everyday. After graduating from the Assam Engineering College, he migrated to USA in 1979 where he did his Masters in Petroleum Engineering from the University of Houston, and has been practicing engineering successfully with a Professional P.E. License in the State of Texas.
In a recent webinar held on Assamsese language and futurewhere he participated as one of the Resource persons, he was enquired for his insatiable pursuits for Assamsese Language and literature .
It has a long story. When I came to the USA, the Assam student movement Oxom Andwlonhad started. I, like many others, was also questioning, what was wrong with Assam? While many of my friends got involved in Assam movement in Assam, I carried movement in my mind to the USA. So the questioning never stopped. Doing something meaningful for Assam was always in the top of my mind.
I soon discovered that if we want to do anything good for Assam, we must know Assam better. I soon realized how little we Assamese know about our own culture, religion and language. So I started to study in earnest. From my childhood, I was a questioning child, and was questioning everything in society. For the next 40 years, I had been preoccupied with the study of History, Literature, Language, religion with special interests on the culture and history of Assam and North East India. These led me to discover Assam and the Northeast with a fresh look, and prompted me to me to write critical writings on Assam, India and the world.
Over the years, I wrote 50 plus article in Assamese and English on a varieties of topics. Besides articles, I have already published several books. My writings may be broadly classified as writings on (1) My Assam, (2) My India and (3) My America and the world
In 2012, I published the book The Poetry of the World(পৃথিবীৰ কবিতা) a translation of the classics of world poetry into Assamese - the first dual language publication of its kind in any Indian language. In the same year, I also published an anthology of Assamese translation of 30 famous short stories from around the world titled Derkuri Bidexi Golpo (ডেৰকুৰি বিদেশী গল্প). My queries about Assam, led me to study the history of Assam in earnest. In 2010, I enrolled for online Ph.D study with the Dibrugarh university on the subject of ancient history of Assam. My research and desertion led me to present the thesis, Buddhism in Assam from ancient time till the pre Xongkordeva time. The university awarded me the Ph.D degree in 2015, and I published the book, Buddhism in Assam.
I was very much in love with the poetry of Emily Dickinson, the best loved American poet. I had been translating many of her poems into Assamese and published a book with translation of about 30 of her poems, titled, The Poetry of Emily Dickinson (এমিলি ডিকিনচনৰ কবিতা). My love of literature and my urge to contribute something meaningful to the Assamese language, prompted me to publish a magazine in translation titled Saneki ( চানেকি), which is a show case of samples of world literature in Assamese translation. Detailed study of the Assamese language was my life long passion. This led to publishing the book, which has been the labour of my love, The Story of the Assamese language (অসমীয়া ভাষাৰকাহিনী). I took great pleasure in studying philosophy in general. The great Chinese classic Tao Te Jing (pronounced Dao de Jing) by Lao Tzu intrigued me. Over the years, I had been translating the book into Assamese. The outcome is the book to be published soon. Dao De Jing (ডাও ডে জিঙ). The Post Colonial Assamese Poetry is a book in the planning stage, representing about 20 Modern Assamese Poets and their poetry into English. Rediscovery of Assam is a book I am planning stage that will include some of my pioneering articles about Assam. My Assam, My India and My America is book in planning with my articles in English. Some of my articles are available in www.boloji.com and www.academia.edu
A few English a rticles under the category “My Assam “ are viz. The World’s Ignorance of Assam, The Significance of the X Sound in Assamese Language, How the Names: Assam, Oxom and Ahom Came to be, Christianity, The Bible and the Assamese Language, Perspective of the Assamese Language, The Phonetics of the Assamese Language, Assamese in Roman Script, The Neolithic Rice Revolution in Assam and NE India, Romancing the Camelia Assamica-The Story of Tea, Buddhism in Assam though the Mystique Songs(Charyapada), The Influence of Buddhism in Assamese Culture, Assam Vaishnavism and Buddhism, Kumar Bhaskara Varman, Xuangzang and Their Times, Xongkordev and His times, Assamese Wisdom through Proverbs, A Tribute to Bhupen Hazarika, The Brahmaputra - The Sorrow of Assam and NAMGHOR- The Modern Assamese Identity
A few Assamese Articles are ভাষাৰ কাহিনী, অসমীয়া ভাষাৰ বাপতি সাহোন ʼসʼউচ্চাৰনৰ তাৎপর্য, আচাম, অসম আৰুআহোম নামৰ উৎপত্তি, দেশী-বিদেশী অসমীয়া শব্দবোৰ, বাংলা ভাষাত অসমীয়া ‘ৰ’আৰু ‘ৱ’আখৰৰ পৰম্পৰা, অসমীয়া ভাষাৰ বৈশিস্থতা, ৰোমান লিপিত অসমীয়া, অসমীয়াৰ প্ৰতিচ্ছবি গামোছাখন, মিয়ানমাৰত এভুমুকি
Books to be published Post Colonial Assamese Poetry (আধুনিক অসমীয়া কবিতা), Rediscovery of Assam. My Assam, My India and My America; The Essence of Buddhism, The Tao of the Civilization etc.