Bhakti Movement and Poetry Unified India More than any Political Movement

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Aju Mukhopadhyay


The essence of Bhakti being an element present in Indian mind, its movement originated in Tamil Nadu; its first emergence in the Tamil epic, Silppadikaram reached its zenith during the period of the Alvars, between sixth and tenth century. The Bhagavata, a Sanskrit work which weaved the theory of Bhakti for Krishna exercised great influence on the Bhakti movement. It became prominent in the seventh century CE. And 63 Saiva Nayanar saint-poets compiled Tirumurai, a compilation of hymns on Shiva which was developed into an influential scripture in Shaivism. It is said that the Saiva Siddhanta (Tamil Saivism) is more indebted to the passionate songs of the Saiva poets. Virasaivas contributed significantly towards the emergence of the Bhakti cult derived from Sankhya and Vedanta tradition. The movement embraced devotees from all castes and rungs of society. Singing ecstatic bhakti hymns in local language was a tradition there. Bhakti movement in the medieval period influenced other religions in India like Sikhism, Christianity and Jainism. It has similarity with Sufism.


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Aju Mukhopadhyay. “Bhakti Movement and Poetry Unified India More Than Any Political Movement”. The Creative Launcher, vol. 2, no. 3, Aug. 2017, pp. 19-24,
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