Religious Hindu Poems

Religious Hindu Poems

Religious Hindu poems are an integral part of the cultural life of any devout Hindu. Many of these poems are recited or sung as prayers daily or on special occasions, while others are listened to or sung as devotional pieces whenever desired by the devotee. There are many sacred mantras pronouncing the holiness and generosity of God in Hindu religion. All Hindu devotees worship their favortie gods by chanting these mantras or hymns.    

The first poem that comes to mind when discussing religious Hindu poetry is “Hanuman Chalisa”, which is a long poem composed by Tulsidas inpraise of lord Hanuman. Hanuman Chalisa is a famous religious poem that has become widely popular among modern-day Hindus. Many devout Hindus recite it every week as a prayer to lord Hanuman, usually on Tuesdays.

Mirabai’s bhajans also have a high standing in religious Hindu poetry. These bhajans are poem-like songs, which are devotional and lyrical in nature. These prayers in the bhakti tradition are sung in praise of Lord Krishna. Mirabai’s poetry puts love forKrishnaabove everything else in life. Her poem-songs depictKrishnasometimes as a husband and at other times as a lover. They are an expression of Mirabai’s intense longing for union with her Lord. Her poems are thus both spiritual and devotional in their theme and tone.

“Sur Sagar” (OceanofMelody) composed by Surdas also deserves special mention. Surdas is renowned for this immortal work, which is a collection of 100,000 poetic song compositions. However, only 8,000 of these have survived today. These poems mainly deal with the life and exploits of Lord Krishna, and reflect the poet’s devotion to the Bhakti movement. They overtly deal with the spiritual metaphor of the Radha-Krishna Lila, or the celestial dance between the lord and his beloved Radha.

A narrative on Hindu religious poems would not be complete without mention of Kabir’s “Bijak” (Seedling), which is a collection of poems that reflect a universal view of religion and spirituality. The poems are filled with ideas of atman, brahman and karma, and have a strong bhakti undertone. They advise common people to cast aside their religious scriptures and holy books to follow the simplest way to ekatwa (oneness) with God.  

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