- Paperback: 244 pages
- Publisher: Oxford University Press (14 November 2007)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0195694201
- ISBN-13: 978-0195694208
- Product Dimensions: 21.3 x 2 x 13.7 cm
- Average Customer Review: 3 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #62,782 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Songs of the Saints of India Paperback – 14 Nov 2007
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'We have waited long for an anthology of Hindi bhakti of this range, authority, and literary excellence.' -- A K Ramanujan
'The author's deep knowledge of the bhakti traditions of north India is evident both in their choice of representative poetry for each of the six saints and in the renderings of their poetry, which are so skilfully fashioned that one can easily hear the nuances of each poet's voice in registers of contemporary English.' -- The Journal of Asian Studies
'This is one of those rare and wonderful books that makes first-rate scholarship immediately accessible to the non-specialist.' --Religious Studies Review
About the Author
John Stratton Hawley is Professor of Religion , Barnard College, Columbia University, USA and Mark Juergensmeyer is Professor of Sociology and Director of Global International Studies Program, University of California, USA
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A brief summary of the book is as follows: The work of Ravidas, Kabir and Nanak worship of god without attributes (Nirguna) and without form. This group would be critical of idolatry, and beliefs in icons and legends and hence referred to as Sants. But Surdas, Mirabai and Tulsidas worshiped gods with attributes (Saguna) with form, hence referred to as Bhaktas. They worshiped Vishnu and his avatars Krishna and Rama. Loyalties in India solidify each group. For example all three Sants were represented in Adi Granth, the poetic anthology created to serve as the scripture of Sikh faith. Despite some differences between these two groups, they were a single force in terms of massive bhakti movement that was gathering force over a millennia.
This book is very well organized, nicely written and topics discussed with historical accuracy of the life and legends. I very much enjoyed reading this book and would recommend to anyone interested in medieval history of India, the bhakti movement and devotional songs in Hindu worship.