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Surdas is often called the nightingale of Braj. He was a poet and musician who wrote in Hindi, Braj Bhasha and Kannada. He is best known for his devotional songs dedicated to the Hindu god Krishna. Let’s take a look at the life of Surdas, his struggles, his works and his legacy.
Who was Surdas?
Sri Surdas was a saint and a musician of the 15th century. He is considered one of the most significant figures in the history of Hindi literature and music. Surdas was born into a family of weavers in the village of Vairag, in the present-day state of Rajasthan. From a young age, he showed a great love for and mastery of music. He is said to have composed over 16,000 couplets, most of which are devoted to the Hindu god Vishnu. Surdas’ compositions are considered some of the finest examples of Hindi poetry and singing.
Surdas’ Contributions to Sanskrit Literature
A great bhakti poet and musician, Surdas is considered one of the most important saints in Vaishnavism. He is known for his contributions to Sanskrit poetry and music, and is often credited with revitalizing the bhakti movement. Surdas was born in a village near Agra in 1512. He was a disciple of Shri Vallabhacharya, the founder of the Pushti Marg sect of Vaishnavism. Surdas is best known for his bhajans, or devotional songs, in praise of Lord Krishna. His lyrics are simple and soulful, and have been sung by devotees all over the world for centuries.
Surdas’ Lament for Krishna
One of Surdas‘ most famous compositions is his Lament for Krishna. This song is a heartbreaking plea to the lord, beseeching him to come back to Earth. Surdas mourns the loss of his friend and lord, singing of the beauty of Krishna’s pastimes on Earth. This song is a beautiful example of Surdas’ poetic genius and his intimate connection to the divine.
Surdas’ Vengeance for Losing His Wife
After losing his wife, Surdas became extremely detached from the world. He would spend days on end in isolation, only coming out to eat and drink. One day, he happened to see a monkey being beaten by a man. To his amazement, the monkey fought back and bit off the man’s hand. This event deeply affected Surdas, who saw it as a sign from the gods. He took it as a sign that he should fight back against the world and all its cruelty. From that day on, Surdas dedicated his life to music and spreading the message of love and compassion.
How Surdas’ Lifestyle Changed His Music
Surdas is known to be the most celebrated saint-poet of the 15th century. He is known for his bhajans and kirtans, most of which were composed spontaneously. Surdas’ music reflected the trials and tribulations of his life. After he left Vrindavan, his lifestyle changed and so did his music. In order to support himself and his family, Surdas started to sing in the courts of the nobles. This led to a more sophisticated and urbane style of music, which was in stark contrast to the simple, folk-style compositions he had written earlier.
With his contributions to Sanskrit literature, especially with the Sursagar which is based on the Bhagavata Purana, it’s hard to find someone who didn’t like or appreciate Surdas’ work. His Lament for Krishna and Vengeance for Losing His Wife are not only beautiful songs but they are powerful pieces of art that have touched people all over the world. Even though he was thrown out of society because he got married at a young age, there were many great souls who helped him through the process so he could share his love with everyone else in India – now known as one of their best bhakti poets.