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‘Advaita in the Compositions of Saint-Poets Jñāneśvara and Kabīra’ by Ms. Shobha Sahasrabuddhe

Conference on Oneness- Advaita in Arts, Music, & Dance: Expression of Oneness in the Compositions of Saint-Poets Jñāneśvara and Kabīra by Ms. Shobha Sahasrabuddhe. The paper was presented in the Conference on Oneness, jointly organized by Indic Academy and Chinmaya Vishwavidyapeeth (CVV) that was held in Chinmaya Eswar Gurukula, Adi Shankara Nilayam, Veliyanad, Kochi between 15th and 17th October, 2019.

Saint Poetry is an indispensable part of the wonderful literary tradition of India. In her presentation, Ms. Sahasrabuddhe gives the brief backgrounds of two of the most significant saint poets, Jñāneśvara and Kabīra; and explains the reflections of Advaita or Oneness in their compositions using suitable poetic examples.

She explains how the foundation of their compositions is the Supreme without attributes. In the course of exposition of the same, Jñāneśvara follows Chidvilāsavāda. Although Kabīra does not designate any such system, one wonders if the mindset can be called ‘Muktādvaita’. Culmination of the journey of both is the same.

However, the difference is evident in the temperament. Jñāneśvara with his affectionate tone comes across as ‘Universal empathy impersonated’ while Kabīra, with his frank style is ‘the phakīra incarnated’. Undoubtedly this difference between the two saint-poets, too, is illusionary similar to the apparent difference between the Brahman and the Universe, concludes Ms. Sahasrabuddhe.


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