Q. 15

Explain the teach

Answer :

Kabir was a poet saint (14th -15th Century BCE) who was one of the most important figures to emerge during the Bhakti movement. Hagiographies and compositions attributed to him have allowed historians to reconstruct his life and works. The works attributed to Kabir is written in the Sant bhasha and ulatbansi which were the special languages of the nirguna poets. The different works and verses attributed to Kabir are preserved by three unique and overlapping compositions –


• the Kabirpanth in Varanasi and Uttar Pradesh,


• the Kabir Granthavali in Rajasthan and


• other literary works in the Adi Granth Sahib.


The major teachings of Kabir are as follows –


• He derived his concept of God from both Vedic and Islamic traditions. Terms like Allah, Khuda, Hazrat and Peer from Islamic traditions and Alakh (the unseen) and the Nirakar (the formless) from the Vedas were used by him in his works. He described God as nirankar (the shapeless).


• He rebutted idolatry and polytheism putting emphasis on the oneness of God who can be known by many names.


• He was critical of both Hindu and Muslim rituals and preached against caste discrimination.


• Dignity of labour was acknowledged and emphasized on by him.


• His works combined the Sufi tradition of love for God with the Hindu tradition of remembrance of God.


His simple language was for the benefit of the common man and in essence his teachings promoted the concept of simple living with love and respect for all.


The ultimate reality was described by Kabir through using illustrations from a wide range of traditions which included Islamic and Vedantic concepts. Terms like Allah, Khuda, Hazrat and Peer from Islamic traditions and Alakh (the unseen) and the Nirakar (the formless), Brahman and Atman from the Vedas were used by him in his works. He described God as nirankar (the shapeless). Yogic influence was observed in his usage of terms like shabda (sound) or shunya (emptiness). His work expressed many unique and contradictory ideas. He often used the Islamic concepts of monotheism and iconoclasm to criticize the concepts of polytheism and idolatry prevalent in the Hindu religion. Several of his works explained the Hindu ideology of nam-simaran i.e reverence towards God through the Sufi concepts of zikr and Ishq. Ultimately, he described God as nirankar (the shapeless) and this has been his description of the ultimate reality through his poems.


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