Father: Ramdas Saraswati
Marital Status: Unmarried
Some lesser known facts about Surdas
- Surdas was a 16th-century Indian poet and singer who was blind and known for his poetic compositions in praise of Lord Krishna. He was a staunch disciple of Lord Krishna and used to write and sing poems in love with his Guru.
- Surdas used to compose poems in Braj, medieval Hindi or Awadhi languages. According to the stories of Surdas, he was blind from birth. The famous saint Vallabhacharya was his music guru, who was the founder of the Pushti Marga sect. Vallabhacharya’s successor Vitthalnath selected eight poets who would help him in composing songs and poems to spread the praise of Lord Krishna. Surdas was one of the eight poets known as “Astachap”. Surdas was known for his excellent poetic skills and devotion to Lord Krishna. meaning of astachap,
The eight disciples of Vallabh Acharya are called achhaps (eight seals in Hindi), named after the oral signature chapter written at the conclusion of literary works.
- Surdas composed the book Sur Sagar (Suras Ocean). Later, several books were released in the form of revised versions of this book by some Indian poets under the name of Sur. In the book Sur Sagar, Surdas describes and describes the depictions of Lord Krishna as follows:
The beloved child of Gokul and Vraj, written from the point of view of the gopis. ,
- According to some historians and scholars, the exact date of birth of Surdas is disputed. Some believed that he was born in the year 1478. In the Vaishnava calendar, Surdas’ birthday is celebrated on the 5th day of the Hindu month of Vaishakh and is known as Surdas Jayanti. However, other scholars believed that his date of birth was somewhere between 1561 and 1584. These historians and scholars also disagree on the birthplace of Surdas. Some of these historians believed that Surdas was born in the village of Ranukata or Renuka, which is located on the main road leading from Agra to Mathura, while other scholars are of the view that Surdas was born in a village called Sihi, Which is located near Delhi. ,
- A theory about Surdas mentions that he was born in a very poor family and was blind from birth. His family started ignoring him and at the age of six, he was forcibly thrown out of the house. Later, after leaving home, he met Saint Vallabhacharya and became his follower. Soon after becoming a devotee of Vallabhacharya, Surdas started memorizing the Shrimad Bhagavad Gita under the guidance and training of his guru. Surdas also started reciting Hindu scriptures and gave religious and philosophical discourses. Surdas was not married throughout his life.
- In his poetic composition Sur Sagar, he described scenes and descriptions from the 16th century of Lord Krishna and Radha, who fell in love with each other. The poems composed by him speak of the longing of Radha and the gopis when Krishna was not around them. Additionally, Sur Sagar’s poems focus on devotion and some highlights from the Ramayana and Mahabharata. This text describes Lord Krishna as a mischievous and beloved child of Braj in the eyes of the gopis. Later, Surdas authored two books namely Sur Saravali and Sahitya Lahiri. Reportedly, there were one lakh verses in Sura Saravali, but with the passage of time, some verses were lost due to ambiguity. In his books, he mainly focused on the works of Lord Krishna, and according to him,
The Lord is the great player, who, in his fickle mood, creates the universe and the primordial being by himself, who possesses the three gunas, namely sattva, rajas and tamas. ,
- In 24 images of Lord Krishna, Surdas tried to explain that Indian historical legends Dhruva and Prahlad were also associated with Lord Krishna as disciples of Krishna. The incarnations of Krishna describe him as an enthusiast of the festivals of Vasanta (spring) and Holi. Another book, Sahitya Lahiri, consisted of 118 verses that focused mainly on devotion (devotion) to Lord Krishna. There are also some compositions of Sur in the holy book of Sikhs ‘Guru Granth Sahib’.
- During the spread of the Bhakti movement in the Indian subcontinent, Surdas actively participated in the movement. Many saints joined this movement together to represent the spiritual empowerment among the masses. In the seventeenth century, initially, this movement started in South India and gradually spread to the states of Northern India.
- Surdas used to compose his poems in Brajbhasha, a dialect of Hindi. This language was also common among the local people, while Persian or Sanskrit were the prevailing literary languages. Soon after his poems were recognized, the status of Braj Bhasha also increased from a common language to a literary language.
- Several films were depicted on the life of Surdas in modern India. Krishna Dev Mehra’s film Surdas was released in 1939. Bhakta Surdas was released by Chaturbhuj Doshi in 1942. In 1988, Chintamani Surdas was portrayed by Ram Pahwa. Several other paintings on his life include Bilvamangal or Bhagat Surdas (1919), Bilvamangal (1932), Chintamani (1956) by P.S. Ramakrishna Rao, Chilamboli (1963) by GK Ramu, Bilvamangal (1976) by Gobinda Roy, and Vilvamangala (1976) by Rustamji Dhotiwala. The Pledge of Allegiance (1996) by Sanjay Virmani.
- The book Shri Krishna Geetavali written by the Indian poet Tulsidas was inspired by the writings and compositions of Sant Surdas. Reportedly, Tulsidas and Surdas were good friends.
- Soon after Surdas’s poems gained popularity, his devotional songs also attracted the great Indian ruler Akbar.
- The modern Indian poet Dr. Hazari Prasad Dwivedi has praised the poetic compositions of Surdas in his Hindi poetry and books. Hazari Prasad Dwivedi has described a verse about Surdas in one of his articles. He wrote,
When Surdas begins to describe his favorite subject, it seems that the Alankar Shastra follows him with folded hands. And there is a flood of similes and a rain of metaphors. Also, Surdas has depicted the childhood form of Lord Krishna very concisely and vividly. Surdas ji had given a wonderful direction to poetry by connecting devotion with makeup.
- In the library of Kashi Nagari Pracharini Sabha, 25 texts composed by Surdas have been kept for the readers.
- According to the poetry of Surdas, both Bhavapad and Kalapaksha meet in the same state.
- A story about Surdas tells that Saint Vallabhacharya found a blind man crying on the banks of river Mathura when he (Vallabhacharya) was coming towards Vrindavan and Skade Surdas to know why he was crying. Surdas then replied that he was blind and did not know what to do. Then Vallabhacharya placed his hand on Surdas’s head, and at that very moment Surdas saw Lord Krishna with his closed eyes. He saw a flashback of Krishna’s life journey, when he lived in Braj about five thousand years ago. Soon after the incident, Vallabhacharya took Surdas to Vrindavan and taught him to sing the aarti, which was performed daily at the Shrinath temple.
- Surdas belonged to the Vallabh sect. According to this sect, Surdas was younger than his guru Sri Vallabhacharya. Soon after receiving initiation from his guru, Surdas began singing the poem of Lord Krishna from the Indian epic Shrimad Bhagavad Gita. According to some historians, the compositions of Surdas were the most numerous among other Indian poets and singers, including Narsi, Meeran and Vidyapati.
- Surdas’s compositions included the Sur-Saravali, which was based on the Indian festival of Holi. In Sur-Saravali, there are one hundred verses in which Surdas elaborates on the creation of this world by Lord Krishna as the creator. His second most popular work includes Sahitya-Lahiri in which Surdas attempted to connect his bhakti (devotion) with the Supreme Lord. Surdas’s third composition is Sur-Sagar in which he wrote 100,000 poems or songs on Lord Krishna.
- The philosophy of Surdas revolved around the Bhakti movement. The Shudddhavaita school of Vaishnavism was propagated by Surdas. He focused on the spiritual analogy of Radha-Krishna Leela, which he achieved by listening to the sages of his time.