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  • Sunday, July 03, 2005

    Sufism and Bhaktism in India

    At the following posting titled Sufism in India (click on the red phrase), there is a good article on Sufism in India. All the basic features and tenets are rightly described. The major four orders (silsilas) are rightly mentioned. The link suggested is non-functional now. It is regretted. The contents were displayed by someone and the guy seems to have removed it. I can not help.

    It further describes the relation with Bhaktism.

    It has right described the Advitya Advaitvada of Ramanuja which forms the core and the basic tenet of Bhaktism in India. Ramanuja and seventeen major saints of Bhakti based their basic theory on Advitya Advaitvada or qualified dualism. The soul of man has a separate existence and also it is part of the Paramatma or the Supreme soul. Ramanuja had stressed upon the path of total Bhakti as the right part to the seek salvation for joining back with the Supreme Soul. However, the final decision of joining with the Supreme Soul rests with the Supreme Soul. This was the main message of Bhaktism which fulfilled the social needs of the time. Ramanuja had not denied the path knowledge as suggested by Shankaracharya. Shankaracharya had identified the soul with the Supreme soul. But Ramanuja had identified the separate existence of the soul of man apart from being the part of the Supreme Soul. This was the basic difference. The second major difference was that Shankaracharya supported the path of Knowledge and intuition with the grace of Supreme soul as path for final salvation. However, Ramanuja had full faith in Bhakti Marga and the grace of Supreme soul as the surety of salvation. Such a doctrine was right answer to unsettled political condition of the time, the upheaval of social setup and disruptive economic situation which prevailed between 1000 A. D. to 1500 A. D.

    Guru Nanak and Vallabharcharya added next dimension to the Bhakti Marg by giving the doctrine of Guruship and grace of Guru as the surety of salvation.

    The write up, suggested above in the link, has well described the main features of Sufism and its relation with Bhaktism. There is slight shortcoming in form of lack of historic explanation. It is mere elaboration. However, on whole, the write up can help in preparing part B, of Paper I History for Mains. This question has been asked in short answers compulsory question. If anyone has prepared his note on Bhaktism in India, he will definitely find it refreshing and source of substantiating his notes.

    The students of UGC NET History should include it in most important notes for the subjective paper.

    The other good sources on writing short notes on Bhaktism and Sufism is Guru Nanak and His Times by J. S. Garewal. There is complete note on it which may not require any improvement. The second good source is Rizvi’s Wonder That War India. However, the major authority is definitely Habibullah.

    Do read the suggestive link and give comments.

    The Essential Seyyed Hossein NasrSufism: The EssentialsIndian Sufism since the Seventeenth CenturyLive in Concert at the Royal Festival, London - May 2000Sufism in IndiaSufism and Society in Medieval India (Debates in Indian History)


    1. Anonymous3:24 AM

      Noy a good site to refer for a project

    2. It is found that the link Sufism in India does not exist.

      It seems that the contents have been removed by the blogger to whom it was tagged.

      However, the explanation on Bhaktism is still relevant.

      It is regretted that the suggested link is non-functional now.

      Sumir (Blogger)


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