Sant Dnyaneshwar

By Admin on 23-03-2010

In
13th cent. AD, knowledge of the great Indian Scriptures were reserved
to Brahmins, who only were permitted to use the language of Sanskrit. It was at
that time that a bright star arose in Maharashtra, who wrote all his
philosophical books in Marathi, the language of Maharashtra. He was none else
but the Saint Dnyaneshwar who was bold enough to go against the traditions of
his times of writing in the Sanskrit language and to use Marathi as the vehicle
of his preaching.

 Sant
Dnyaneshwar was born to a very religious Brahmin, Vithalpant of Alandi village
in Maharashtra. Vithalpant had four children who were named according to the
maxims of Indian Philosophy. When one gets out of this worldly life (Nivritti –
Nivritinath), he obtains real knowledge (Dynana – Dnyaneshwar). When Dynana is
obtained, he finds the bridge to salvation (Sopan) leading to liberation
(Muktha – Mukthabai). Vithalpant had chosen sanyasa after he had married
Rukminibai. Later, as advised by his Guru, he returned to family life and had
all the children. According to the orthodox Brahmin priests, it was a serious
sin to start family life after once choosing to be a sanyasi (ascetic). So they
not only refused to do the thread ceremony of their children but also asked
them to sacrifice their lives at the conference of Yamuna and Ganga rivers, to
compensate the sin they have done. They accepted this unanimous decision and
jumped into the river and died.

All
the four children, the eldest hardly ten, were turned destitutes and none of
their relatives too turned to be of any support. The children went begging. At
Alandi they became outcasts. They then left Alandi and moved by foot all the
way to Paithan, which was at that times a great centre of learning. All the
Brahmins of Paithan too rejected their request to continue as Brahmins.
Dnyaneshwar argued that God was alike in all beings. Hearing this, a senior
Brahmin asked Dnyaneshwar to make a passing buffalo to recite the Vedas. It is
said that no sooner than Dnyaneshwar placed his hand on the buffalo, the
buffalo started reciting Vedas, continuously for hours. It made the Paithan
Brahmins decide to grant the certificate of purity to these children; but still
they refused to do the thread ceremony.

Dnyaneshwar
later wrote the famous book ‘Dnyaneshwari’, a unique criticism of Bhagwatgeeta
at a very early age of 16. The book clearly refers to the social culture of the
times, manners followed and traditions and rituals observed. It is considered
an independent book expounding Indian Philosophy. His proven divine standing
and knowledge made him the proud son of not only Maharashtra but the whole of
India. 

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