Devotional Gurus And Their Views - Medieval Indian History

Devotional Gurus And Their Views

Table of Contents

B haktiism flourished in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. The essence of Bhaktiism is the union of the individual with God and spiritualism. Various missionaries spread the ideals of Bhaktiism during this period.

Guru Teachings
Guru Nanak Oneness of God, rejection of caste system, importance of service to others, and the concept of "Kirat Karo"
Guru Kabir Importance of devotion to a single God, rejection of idol worship and superstitions, and emphasis on the unity of all religions
Guru Ravidas Emphasis on equality and brotherhood, rejection of caste system and untouchability, and importance of devotion to God
Guru Chaitanya Importance of devotion to Lord Krishna, and the concept of "Sankirtan" or congregational chanting of God's name

The early preacher of Bhakti Dharma was the twelfth century saint Ramanuja. He was born in Tirupati, Andhra. He used to say that attachment or maya arises through action. True liberation is possible only through Bhakti Yoga. He condemned casteism and untouchability.


Bhaktimargi saints named Nimbarka and Madhvacarya appeared in the 13th century.


  • (1) The major bhakti guru of the fourteenth century was Ramananda. He adopted Ramanuja's philosophy. He was born in a Brahmin family in Prayag but adopted Bhakti Dharma. His contribution to the spread of Bhakti Dharma in North India was immense.
  • (2) Among his 12 main disciples were barbers, cobblers, national saints. He hated casteism and preached devotion to Rama as the path to liberation. One of his disciples was Saint Kabir. Ramananda used the Hindi language as a vehicle for his evangelization.


  • (1) Ramananda's disciple Kabir was of Jola or Tantubaya nationality. His exact date of birth is not known. Divine knowledge arose in his mind from childhood. He talks about abandoning puja, worship and fertilizing devotion.
  • (2) He did not see any difference between Hindus and Muslims. Allah and Ram – He used to speak of both, because according to him they were one. He condemned casteism, worshiping idols, praying.
  • (3) Kabir composed his verses in the form of short poems or dohas, which were spoken by common people. He did not establish any particular religious sect. According to Dr. Tarachand "Kabir's mission was to harmonize all religions and spread the message of human love."


Namdev was the propagator of another Bhakti Dharma in Maharashtra. He was alive in the first half of the fifteenth century. He preached Bhaktiism and the theory of human equality. He preached the theory that God is one and called by many names.

Sri Chaitanya

  • (1) Sri Chaitanya was one of the main propagators of Bhakti Dharma. He was born in 1485 AD in a noble Brahmin family in Nadia. He was well versed in logic and philosophy. That is why people called him Nimai Pandit.
  • (2) Realizing the futility of conventional Hinduism and the pursuit of knowledge, he took up devotion to Krishna mantra near Ishwarpuri in Gaya. At the age of 24, he left home and took up a monastic life. From this time he continued to preach Bhakti Dharma with great passion and enthusiasm.

The religion of consciousness

  • (1) Sri Chaitanya preached religion in various places of India. But he stayed most of the time in Puri or Nilachal. Chaitanya rejected caste system. He always preached the doctrine that only through devotion to Krishna would salvation come.
  • (2) One of his disciples was Yavana Haridas. He introduced the practice of kirtan by chanting Krishna's name. The main aspect of the kirtan was the congregational prayer and chanting of names.
  • (3) Chaitanya believed that through the chanting of Kirtan, the Lord's seat in the devotee's heart is attained. This results in a transcendental divine feeling in the devotee. In Bengal, Orissa, Deccan, Vrindavan everywhere Chaitanya's disciples wrote the flood of Bhakti Dharma.


  • (1) Nanak was another major preacher of Bhakti Dharma. His disciples came to be known as 'Sikhs'. The word 'Sikh' means holy. He was born in 1469 AD in a Kshatra family in Talbandi village of Punjab. He got married and practiced samsaradharma for some time.
  • (2) Later he attained divine realization and left the world and devoted his life to the work of preaching the religion in various places. He did not preach devotion to any particular deity. He considered the worship of the formless God to be the path to liberation.
  • (3) He used to say that only by chanting God's name with love and devotion will people be liberated. He emphasized purity of character to gain God. He especially talks about Hindu-Muslim unity and human equality.
  • (4) He strongly condemned caste system. He spoke of monotheism and religious tolerance. He was against Hindu religious ceremonies and untouchability. His disciples included both Hindus and Muslims.


Also Vallabhacharya, Gnaneshwar, Ravidas, Surdas, Tulsidas, Mirabai etc. were many other saints of Bhaktimarga.

(FAQ) Questions About Devotional Gurus And Their Views?

1. Who was the original preacher of Bhakti religion?

  • Ramanuja
2. Who was the main devotional guru?
  • Ramananda
3. Who was Kabir's disciple?
  • Ramananda
4. What are the disciples of Guru Nanak called?
  • Sikh

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