NCERT Class 12 History Chapter 6 Notes Bhakti-Sufi Traditions

Bhakti-Sufi Traditions Class 12 History Notes

Bhakti–Sufi Traditions: Changes in Religious Beliefs and Devotional Texts. In this chapter, we will see the scenarios characterised by dynamism and diversity.

A Mosaic of Religious Beliefs and Practices

During this period the very noticeable characteristic was the increase in the visibility of sculpture and text of God and Goddesses. This is indicated in the expansion of praising Vishnu, Shiva and the goddess and each of them was visualised in different forms.

The Integration of Cults

  • Historians made an effort to understand the developments and recommended two processes.
  • One process is spreading the Brahmanical ideas.
  • The second process is reworking the beliefs and practices of it and other social classifications.
  • Deities were visualised differently in different parts of the country.

Difference and Conflicts

  • The worship of the forms of the goddess was associated with and was classified as Tantrics.
  • Tantric traditions were spread everywhere and practitioners usually ignored the disparities in class and caste as per the rituals. Shaivism and Buddhism were influenced by these ideas.
  • There used to be conflicts between the people who admired the Vedic tradition and the people who admired Tantric practices.
  • Devotees tend to convey which deity they choose either Vishnu or Shiva.
  • Worshipping of deities has a very long history of thousand years before the period which is being discussed.
  • Singing and Chanting is an aspect of worship.

Poems of Prayer Early Traditions of Bhakti

Devotees formed a community where poet-saints were presented as leaders. Women and the lower classes were acknowledged in Brahman as they were not considered eligible for sovereignty.

The Alvars and Nayanars of Tamil Nadu

  • Alvars are those who are devotees of Vishnu.
  • Nayanars are those who are devotees of Shiva.
  • Alvars led the bhakti movements in the 6th century.
  • Alvars and Nayanars travelled from one place to another singing hymns in Tamil to worship the deity.
  • When they used to travel they found some shrines as abodes of their Gods.
  • The sacred temples were built later.
  • Poet-saints’ singing became a tradition in shrines.

Attitude Towards Caste

  • Historians denote that alvars and nayanars took the initiative for the movement to protest against the caste system.
  • Brahms tried to reform the system.
  • Alvars and Nayanar traditions sometimes seemed as vital as and significant as Vedas.

Women Devotees

  • Women’s presence was one of the very noticeable characteristics of these traditions.
  • For example, Andal’s compositions, an Alvar woman, were sung widely.
  • She is a devotee of Vishnu.
  • Another example is Karaikkal Ammaiyar, a Nayanar woman. She is a devotee of Shiva. Her compositions are based on Nayanar tradition.

The Virashaiva Tradition in Karnataka

  • In the 12th century, a new movement in Karnataka came into existence by Brahmana named Basavanna during 1106-68.
  • In the court, he was the minister of the Kalachuri ruler.
  • Basavanna followers were called as Virashaivas or Lingayats.
  • Lingayats are still a significant community in the region.
  • In the manifestation of linga, they praise Shiva.
  • According to Lingayat beliefs, after death, the devotee will not come back to this world. So, they don’t do funeral rites instead they bury them.
  • Lingayats questioned the concept of rebirth.
  • These increased the followers of lingayats among the people who were criticised in the Brahmanical social hierarchy.
  • The practice was not approved in Dharmashastras, but the Lingayats encouraged it. ●          Such as stopping the pre-puberty marriage.

Religious Ferment in North India

Chroniclers did not find the compositions of Alvars and Nayanars till the 14th century. During the period, those who did not follow the Orthodox mentality were gaining positions and came forward. Nath, Jogis and Siddhas were from these. The leaders of the new religions questioned the rights of Vedas. The next part of the Sufis was the most important part of the development.

New Strands in the Fabric Islamic Tradition

Faith of Rulers and Subjects

  • Muhammad Qasim, an Arab named, in 711 dominated Sind which later became a part of the Caliph’s domain.
  • Delhi Sultanate was established by Turks and Afghans in the 13th century.
  • This formed the formation of sultanates in different parts of the subcontinent.
  • Rulers in several areas acknowledged the religion, Islam.
  • In the 16th century, this continued in the establishment of the Mughal Empire and other regions.
  • Ulama was used to guide the Muslim rulers.
  • To make sure that the ruling is according to Sharia.
  • Jizya means paying taxes. They started paying taxes and got the right to be protected by Muslims.
  • Muslims granted tax exemption to other religions such as Hindu, Christian, Jaina, Jewish and Zoroastrian religious institutions and expressed respect towards non-Muslim religious leaders.
  • Akbar and Aurangzeb were included with the several rulers who made these grants.

The Popular Practice of Islam

  • All those who embraced Islam, the five ”pillars” of the belief, there is one God, Allah, and Prophet Muhammed is his messenger. Proposing prayers five times a day, giving zakats (alms), during the month of Ramadan fasting in it, and performing Mecca (hajj).
  • The Muslim traders of Arab descent settled down in Kerala on the Malabar coast and opted for the local language Malayalam.

Names of communities

  • Usually, the terms Hindu and Muslim are taken for granted as per religion community.
  • The Turkish rulers were called Turushka.
  • The people from Tajikistan were called Tajikas.
  • The people from Persia were called Parashika.

The Growth of Sufism

During the early centuries of Islam, the religious-minded and disciplined people were called Sufis.

Khanqahs and Silsilas

  • Sufism evolved and developed by the 12th century with the body of literature on Quranic studies. Also with the Sufi practice.
  • The Sufis started organising communities around the Persian or khanqahs and Shaikh (known in Arabic) was a master and used to teach them.
  • Shaikh is known in Arabic, pir or murshid in Persian.
  • They established spiritual rules and interactions between the masters and the normal persons.
  • During the 12th century, Sufis silsilas started crystallising in different parts of the world.
  • Silsilas means the chain, exemplifying the link between the master and the follower. ● Shaikh was revered as Wali.

Outside the Khanqahs

  • Qalandars, Madaris, Malangs, Haidaris et cetera. were referred to as be-shari’a.
  • Sufis who compiled were termed as ba-shari’s.
  • Be-sharia refers to those who did not follow shari’a.
  • Ba-sharia refers to those who follow sharia.
  • Sufis followed Sharia and they were termed as ba-shari’a.
  • They ignored the rituals.

The Chishtis in the Subcontinent

One of the groups of Sufis who resettled to India during the late 12th century. Chishtis adopted some characteristics of Indian devotion to traditions. They were influential as they successfully accommodated the local habitat.

Life in the Chishti Khanqahs

  • Shaikh Nizamuddin’s hospice in Ghiyaspur in Delhi on the banks of the Yamuna river. It consisted of a small room and a big hall known as jamat khana where the visitors lived and prayed.
  • The small room on the roof, where the shaikh lived where he met the visitors morning and evening.
  • An open kitchen called langar was opened for everyone without asking for any charity anyone could come.
  • Soldiers, merchants, slaves, travellers, rich or poor, poets, singers, Hindu jogis (yogi) and qalandars, anyone could come and were open for all from morning to night.
  • The organisations, teachings and practices of Chishtis and the fame of Shaikh increased and spread rapidly.

Languages and Communication

  • Local languages were adopted by Chishtis and Guru Granth Sahib.
  • In the 16th and 17th centuries, the poetry was composed in Urdu by chishtis.

Sufis and the State

  • Sufis used to isolate themselves from the world and the political elites.
  • Chishtis were open to accept the donations in cash.
  • They use these for requirements such as food, clothes, and ritual necessities.
  • Kings were not only required to exemplify the association with sufis but they also required fairness from them.
  • There used to be a conflict between the Sultans and the Sufis.
  • The followers of Nizamuddin Auliya called him sultan-ul-mashaikh which means sultan among shaikhs.

Through the Eyes of Travellers
Notes Thinkers, Beliefs and Buildings

New Devotional Paths Dialogue and Dissent in Northern India

The three influential figures: are Kabir, Baba Guru Nanak and Mirabai.

Weaving a Divine Fabric: Kabir

  • From the 14th to 15th centuries, Kabir was one of the best examples of the emergence in the context of poet-saints.
  • Historians tried to reconstruct his life with thoroughness, studied his compositions and wrote biographies.
  • The three distinct parts of Kabir: The Kabir Bijak is maintained by the Kabir Panth in Varanasi. The Kabir Granthawali in Rajasthan and other compositions of his are found in Adi Granth Sahib.
  • Kabir’s compositions were written in different languages.
  • His poems and dialects were written in different languages.

Baba Guru Nanak and the sacred word

  • Baba Guru Nanak was born in a Hindu family in Nankana Sahib a village near the Ravi River and was largely Muslim Punjab.
  • He studied Persian and was trained to be an accountant. He got married at an early age.
  • He spent his time mostly with the Sufis and the bhakts.
  • Baba Guru Nanak rejected image idolization, ritual baths and the scriptures of both the Hindu and the Muslim.
  • According to him “rab” has no gender.
  • The compositions or hymns he sang are called Shabad.

Mirabai, the devotee princess

  • Mirabai was best known in the 15th-16th century for the poets of the bhakti tradition.
  • Hagiographies were constructed on her.
  • She belonged to a Rajput family and was forced to marry.
  • Her in-laws tried to kill her through poison but later she escaped from their
  • She used to sing for both men and women and especially for lower caste people in Gujarat and Rajasthan.

Reconstructing Histories of Religious Traditions

Reconstructing Histories of Religious Traditions require skills to identify different languages, sculptures and different traditions and religions.

Tagged with: Bhakti-Sufi Traditions chapter notes | ch 6 history class 12 notes | class 12 history chapter 6 Bhakti-Sufi Traditions notes | class 12 history chapter 6 notes | class 12 history chapter 6 notes pdf download

Class: Subject: ,

Have any doubt

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *