In this blog we will learn about birth, life accounts and teachings & Miracles of the great Indian mystic sage and poet-Guru Ravidas along with History, significance of Ravidas Jayanti on the occasion of Guru Ravidas Jayanti 2021.
Why Is Ravidas Jayanti celebrated?
Guru Ravidas Jayanti 2021 is celebrated to commemorate the birth anniversary of mystic poet saint Guru Ravidas. He was born in village Seer Goverdhanpur presently in Uttar Pradesh to parents Mata Kalsan and Santokh Das in 1450 CE. His parents were cobblers and belonged to the “Chamar Community” and were considered untouchables then.
How Is Ravidas Jayanti celebrated?
Guru Ravidas Jayanti is celebrated on a full moon day of the month of Magh which falls in January-February according to the Gregorian calendar. This year Ravidas Jayanti falls on February 27, 2021. On this day, the followers of Ravidas (often called Ravidassias) read the poetic writings of Ravidas and carry out Nagar Keertan processions.
His birth anniversary is celebrated by his followers all over the world with great enthusiasm and devotion. A major celebration event is held every year at Shri Guru Ravidas Janam Asthan Mandir- his birthplace in Uttar Pradesh.
History of Saint Ravidas
Ravidas, who was born in a cobbler family, took up the family profession to make a living but was spiritually inclined. Majority of his time was spent in listening to spiritual discourses of saints at banks of river Ganges. Being constantly in the company of saints, he too started writing mystic poems. His literary work is included in Shri Guru Granth Sahib Ji of Sikhs and Panchvani of Dadu Panthis. 41 of his mystic poems are included in the Sacred Book-Shri Guru Granth Sahib ji of the Sikh community. He died in 1520 in Varanasi.
Who Was the Guru of Saint Ravidas?
Initially, Sant Ravidas took Naam Diksha (initiation) from Ramanad who was a follower of Supreme Almighty Kabir Saheb. Being spiritually inclined, sage Ravidas got deeply engrossed in the way of worship given by Ramanad. Later on Kabir Saheb gave him initiation and enlightened him about the existence of True Almighty and the correct way of worship to be adopted to attain Him.
Teachings of Saint Ravidas
Since Saint Ravidas was a disciple of Almighty Kabir Saheb, his teachings too focused on the same. Just like Guru Nanak Sahib, he too propagated about true Almighty, how can a soul unite with Him, what way of worship to be adhered to for unite with Almighty, what is the meaning of the word “salvation”, who can grant salvation and who can attain it?
How Did Sage Ravidas Give Naam Diksha (Initiation) to Meera Bai?
People are aware that Saint Ravidas had initiated Meerabai but most of them are unaware about the true incident behind it. Once while going to the temple Meerabai heard Kabir Saheb delivering a spiritual sermon in which He mentioned that Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva are mortals and are in the cycle of birth and death, there is a superior power beyond these gods and only He is capable of granting salvation.
Upon hearing this, Meerabai went to meet Kabir Saheb and she questioned as to why He called Vishnu a mortal. She informed Him that she meets Shri Krishna in person. Almighty Kabir Saheb told her that since she can talk to Shri Krishna personally, she should ask him about her confusion. That night she spoke to Shri Krishna and during her conversation he confessed that all three gods are mortal and there is a superior power about whom they are unaware.
The next morning Meerabai went to meet Almighty Kabir Saheb instead of going to temple. She informed Him that Shri Krishna confessed that he is mortal not Supreme Almighty. She asked Kabir Saheb to give her initiation. To test her devotion Kabir Saheb asked her to take initiation from Saint Ravidas who belonged to the Chamar community because practice of untouchability was at its peak during that era.
When Meerabai went to meet Saint Ravidas he advised her that she should think about her decision of making him her guru as he was untouchable. But Meerabai insisted that she doesn’t care about his caste and is seeking her welfare. Saint Ravidas informed Almighty Kabir Saheb about this. He asked Saint Ravidas to initiate her. This is how Meerabai became one of his disciples.
Miracles by Saint Ravidas and Why They Happened?
Miracles by saints happen due to their spiritual powers is something we all are familiar with. However, there are two instances which are widely spoken about and many-a-times even rejected by our religious preachers due to their ignorance about Supreme Almighty Kabir Saheb. Let us take a look at both of those accounts.
Saint Ravidas Taking a Queen in His Refuge
Once few people from Saint Ravidas’s village were going to take a bath in the Holy Ganges. They asked Saint Ravidas to join them. Sage Ravidas said he couldn’t join them but asked them to offer one coin to goddess Ganga on his behalf only if she takes it personally, else bring it back. Those people made fun of his condition but took the coin. When they reached the bank of river Ganga, they asked goddess Ganga to come and take Sage Ravidas’s coin personally. Immediately two hands appeared from the river.
One was empty and the other hand was holding a gold bangle. One of those people offered the coin and in exchange of that coin goddess Ganga offered him the gold bangle and asked him to give it to Sage Ravidas. After getting the gold bangle, this person became greedy and thought what would a sage like Ravidas do with this bangle? Instead, I will give it to the queen and get some reward for it. When he took the bangle to the queen, the queen insisted on having a pair of those bangles since tha bangle was very beautiful. Since it was a present from goddess Ganga, he failed to get the second bangle. The king got agitated and threatened him with his life.
This scared him to a great extent and compelled him to visit sage Ravidas and narrate the entire story. Sage Ravidas said that he can take a bangle from the vessel he used to keep his thread and leather in water for shoe making. Even though the feeling was gross he immersed his hand in that vessel. He realised that there were many such bangles in that vessel. Sage Ravidas told him to take just one out of those and get his problem solved. He took the Bangle and gave it to the queen. He then narrated the entire incident to both the king and queen which made the Queen very much impressed with sage Ravidas and she made him her guru.
Saint Ravidas Taking 700 Brahmins in His Refuge
Once the Queen hosted a community meal for all the Brahmins in her area. In this arrangement she made a special seat for her guru sage Ravidas. When approximately 700 Brahmins were having their meal they realised that even sage Ravidas was sitting amongst them and having a meal. Since sage Ravidas belonged to the untouchable caste, all the Brahmins became very offended and were about to leave when sage Ravidas said that he would sit outside the tent while they could have their meals comfortably without his presence being noticed.
They all agreed to this. While eating they realised that sage Ravidas was sharing a plate with every Brahmin present there. This led to chaos. To calm down the situation sage Ravidas said that by just wearing a janeau (sacred thread) you don’t become Brahmins. If that’s the case then I have a gold janeau under my skin. He made a small incision in his chest and revealed a gold janeau. All the 700 Brahmins became his disciples. Sage Ravidas worshipped true Almighty (Kabir Sahib) who always stood by his side during times of trials and these miracles happened.
Can We, Too, Get This Kind of Support From Almighty?
The answer to this question is a definite “YES!!!”. But this is possible only if we undertake the true way of worshiping the Supreme Almighty-Kabir Saheb which is based on our holy Scriptures. All those who are undertaking true worship are experiencing these miracles in their life on a daily basis.
Who Is Imparting True Worship?
Today, there is only one saint on earth who is imparting true worship in accordance to our holy scriptures and His name is Saint Rampal Ji Maharaj from Barwala-Hisar, Haryana, India. He is the only sage who fits the description of an enlightened sage provided in Srimad Bhagavad Gita chapter 15 verses 1-4. To Attain True Worship and know how to attain true Almighty, kindly listen to the Spiritual discourses by Sant Rampal ji Maharaj .