Yes You Can — Srinivasa Ramanujan
I don’t believe in an ideal person, its like infinity you can never be at it just approach it. Many people come and go in our life but there are only some that have the ability to leave their footprint in the sands of time.
This article enumerate some of my reasons why I feel the same about my role model Srinivasa Ramanujan.
Having an outstanding formal education, great mentorship, financial stability, family support and all such tremendously important things for becoming a successful person in life or for following your passion, this idea was brought to its knees by Ramanujan.
Fighting with poverty, a below average school student (who failed in 11th and 12th standard), with no formal education became one of the greatest mathematician of the modern era, proving that if you have passion for your domain you will surely find a way to excel in it. Ramanujan proved that people who feel life is not fair with them or who think that the miserable always happen to them are just excused made by those who haven’t yet given their 100% to their passion. Struggling with poor medical conditions, and straggling street to street for job was the scenario where my role model depicts that it is not life which is to blame if you are not as high spirited as you should be towards your aim.
His ability and perseverance toward his aim made such a great impact that his birthday (22 December) is celebrated as National Mathematics Day in India.
Ramanujan confirmed that it is easy to turn face from problems, and there are many who find that life is always taking their exams, however only those who can fight against this nature of theirs can reach the eternal elixir. Getting fellowship of the Royal Society at time when India was still under British rule guides me that no matter the situation, its the belief in yourself that will lead you to the a state where you can pursue your aim.
It is not only me that is inspired by him, but the whole of India. We have a great documentary about him (by Warner Bros. Pictures — The Man Who Knew Infinity) that has inspired millions by bringing his ideals close to us. If interested you can learn more about the great personality in the book My Search for Ramanujan — By Ken Ono.
“An equation means nothing to me unless it expresses a thought of God.”
This is one of the famous quotes from Ramanujan, and clearly depicts the love he had for his interest. It is his life story that inspires me the most and helps me guide through rough times in life. I believe we all have the spark within ourselves and its up to us how we create fire from it.
Ramanujan also found the least number that can be expressed as the sum of cubes of two positive numbers in two ways (1729 = 1³ + 12³ = 10³ + 9³). This number (1729) is called Ramanujan Number. The fun fact about this is, he found this while lying on a hospital bed suffering from Tuberculosis, and having a chat with one of his friend and great mathematician Dr. Hardy. This again helps me to understand what dedication to your aim means.
Like many great personalities, Ramanujan did not have the gift of long life and demised at an early age of 32. There are many such instances where Ramanujan does not fail to inspire us. Its his ideals that are still left behind for us to follow and will keep him alive in the hearts of billions.