Ajit Kumâr Chakravarty from Mr. Living at the moment in which the impassioned poetry and deep philosophy of the great Persian mystics, Attâr, Sâdî, Jalâlu'ddîn Rûmî, and Hâfiz, were exercising a powerful influence on the religious thought of India, he dreamed of reconciling this intense and personal Mohammedan mysticism with the traditional theology of Brâhmanism. The book, however, is still a classic, and a wonderful read for any student of meditation. The sal and the kikar must guard him from heat. Try to live to see this! I find his poems compelling in their sincerity and heart opening. About the poet: The Indian poet Kabir 1440-1518 grew up amidst Hinduism and Islam, and was deeply influenced by both. But he was essentially a poet and musician: rhythm and harmony were to him the garments of beauty and truth.
Kshiti Mohan Sen's text, and a prose essay upon Kabîr from the same hand. Kabir's insights about the unity of God and the follies of many other religions, and also the truths in all of them, is really great and quite modern for that time period. A poem from the collection: ~ Tell me, O Swan, your ancient tale. The poetry is pretty good in places. We don't know much about him or his circumstances -- most of what we do know is myth anyway -- so what emerges is this amazing, modern voice that speaks to us across the centuries, like a Zen monk, slapping us across the face with his words, bringing us up short, and forcing us to focus, just for a moment, on what's really important. For work has no other aim than the getting of knowledge: When that comes, then work is put away. God is the breath of all breath.
It is not the austerities that mortify the flesh which are pleasing to the Lord, When you leave off your clothes and kill your senses, you do not please the Lord: The man who is kind and who practices righteousness, who remains passive amidst the affairs of the world, who considers all creatures on earth as his own self, He attains the Immortal Being, the true God is ever with him. Some state 1398 as a date of birth,5 whereas others favour later dates, such as 1440Some assign his death date to the middle of the 15th century — for example, 1440 or 1448whereas others place it in 1518Lifespans commonly suggested by scholars include from 1398 to 1448, and from 1440 to 1518. This is the kind of book you could take off your shelf and read a few poems and feel happy and peaceful for the rest of the day. The boy Kabîr, in whom the religious passion was innate, saw in Râmânanda his destined teacher; but knew how slight were the chances that a Hindu guru would accept a Mohammedan as disciple. He sits inside a shrine room all day, so that the Guest has to go outdoors and praise the rocks. In fifteenth-century Benares the syncretistic tendencies of Bhakti religion had reached full development. The universe is shot through in all parts by a single sort of love.
From these we have derived great assistance. Kabîr's story is surrounded by contradictory legends, on none of which reliance can be placed. You are the tree, the seed, and the cell; You are the flower, the fruit, and the shade; You are the sun, the light, and the lighted; You are the manifold form of infinite space; You are the breath, the word, and the meaning; You are the limit and the limitless. Friend, hope for the Guest while you are alive. The strains of love fill the days and the nights with music, and the world is listening to its melodies: Mad with joy, life and death dance to the rhythm of this music. Look within your heart, for there you will find both Karim and Ram; All the men and women of the world are His living forms.
He has gone from the guddee and put on the shroud, And departed in guise of bairagi avowed! From what land do you come, O Swan? The one who loves you understood, but you did not. He has gone from the guddee and put on the shroud, And departed in guise of bairagi avowed! Born in or near Benares, of Mohammedan parents, and probably about the year 1440, be became in early life a disciple of the celebrated Hindu ascetic Râmânanda. Go over and over your beads, paint weird designs on your forehead, wear your hair matted, long, and ostentatious, but when deep inside you there is a loaded gun, how can you have God? saith Kabir , a bairagi avowed! He had little use for the rites and trappings of any religion, and openly despised the pious quoting of scriptures from any religion. But his wonderful songs survive, the spontaneous expressions of his vision and his love; and it is by these, not by the didactic teachings associated with his name, that he makes his immortal appeal to the heart. Oh, light was the world that he weighed in his hands! This made his songs and poems with allegories drawn from daily life acquire a form that connected well with the followers of common life. Kabir will tell you the truth: Listen, brother! The musk is in the deer, but it seeks it not within itself: it wanders in quest of grass.
He has looked upon Man, and his eyeballs are clear, There was One; there is One, and but One, saith Kabir ; The Red Mist of Doing has thinned to a cloud, He has taken the Path for bairagi avowed! Both the temples practise similar forms of worship where his songs are sung daily. Kabîr belongs to that small group of supreme mystics--amongst whom St. Other scholars, in contrast, state that it is unclear if Sufi ideas influenced Bhakti sants like Kabir or it was vice versa, suggesting that they probably co-developed through mutual interaction. A beautiful legend tells us that after his death his Mohammedan and Hindu disciples disputed the possession of his body; which the Mohammedans wished to bury, the Hindus to burn. Mehrota also groups poems thematically, which is a great service.
This seems to have happened in 1495, when he was nearly sixty years of age; it is the last event in his career of which we have definite knowledge. The Sacred Books of the East are nothing but words. There is nothing but water in the holy pools. Let your arrogance go, and look around inside. The followers of Kabir are vegetarians and abstain from alcohol. You forgot to make a place in your bed next to you. The strains of love fill the days and the nights with music, and the world is listening to its melodies: Mad with joy, life and death dance to the rhythm of this music.
The introduction is essential to gaining a deeper understanding of the lyrical, mystical poems that follow. The Lord is in me, the Lord is in you, as life is in every seed. The world of man dances in laughter and tears. Most scholars conclude from historical literature that this legend is also untrue, that Kabir was likely married, his wife probably was named Dhania, they had at least one son named Kamal and a daughter named Kamali. Kabīr maṭha कबीरमठ , a maṭha located in the back alleys of Kabir Chaura, celebrates his life and times. Râmânanda had brought to Northern India the religious revival which Râmânuja, the great twelfth-century reformer of Brâhmanism, had initiated in the South. I shall go neither to hell nor to heaven.
Yet I have to give up my fears if I want to take part in this love. O Friend, awake, and sleep no more! Kabir says: Actually, you are going in a hearse to the country of death — bound hand and foot! Now let the events about to come — come! The need for this alternation, and its entire naturalness for the mind which employs it, is rooted in his concept, or vision, of the Nature of God; and unless we make some attempt to grasp this, we shall not go far in our understanding of his poems. A Song of Kabir O H, light was the world that he weighed in his hands! That is a string of beads one should look at with luminous eyes. Next, he is protected from the soul-destroying conclusions of pure monism, inevitable if its logical implications are pressed home: that is, the identity of substance between God and the soul, with its corollary of the total absorption of that soul in the Being of God as the goal of the spiritual life. There is nothing, then, in this translation to indicate that Kabir was particularly innovative either in idea or technique of expression - whatever novelty is found in his verse probably remains in the original. To learn and discern of his brother the clod, Of his brother the brute, and his brother the God.