Why is Sant Kabir Jayanti Celebrated?•
Posted on June 13 2022
Sant Kabir Jayanti marks the celebrations of the birth of the Indian mystic saint Kabir who was also a great Hindu poet of the 15th century. However, the exact dates of his birth and death are unclear. This day is also known as Kabir Prakat Diwas. The celebration occurs on the full moon day in the Shukla Paksha of Hindu month of Jyeshtha on a full moon day. This is typically the month of May or June as per the Gregorian calendar.
Kabir Das, as the saint is otherwise referred to, was raised by a Muslim couple. It is believed that he was born to a Hindu unwed mother who abandoned him in a basked floating in a pond. However, the saint claimed himself to be both a Hindu and a Muslim and declared that he was the son of both Ram and Allah.
Although Sant Kabir Jayanti celebrations are carried out all over the country, the celebrations are done with maximum pomp and gaiety primarily in North India, especially Varanasi, the city where he was born. The day is of great importance among his devotees outside the country as well.
One major ritual followed by devotees of this saint in celebrating his birthday is recalling his teachings. They join together in groups and recite his poems or couplets referred to as Kabir ke Dohe together. His followers also organize seminars to convey the teachings of their beloved saint in Kabirchaura Mutt in Varanasi. Schools and colleges host several programs like organising skits based on his work and singing and dancing to his poems.
Kabir panthis throughout the country also organise several bhandaras throughout the country apart from satsangs and meetings to enlighten people about the work and life of Kabir. Kabir panthis are members of Kabir panth, a community founded by the saint to spread the saint’s teachings all over the world. A procession called Shobhayatra and charitable work are undertaken in some places.
There are two major shrines in Varanasi that are dedicated to Saint Kabir. One is a Hindu temple while the other is a Muslim mosque. These shrines come to life on this day and is thronged by the followers of the saint on this day. Special aartis and poojas are organised in these premises on this day. His poems are recited with utmost fervour. Special prasad is also made in the shrines on this day and distributed among the devotees.
The works of the great saint Kabir played a key role in influencing the Bhakti movement and playing a key role in Sikhism. The fifth Sikh guru, Guru Arjun formulated the Sikh scriptures from the writings of Kabir in Adi Granth.
The key highlight of his teachings is that he expressed his philosophical thoughts in a simple form that could be easily understood by the well-versed and the common man alike. The inspirational teachings as well as thought provoking content of the poems compiled by the great legend have won the hearts of people of all generations.
Kabir preached that truth was always with a person who followed the path of righteousness, passively detached himself/herself from the worldly affairs and considered everything around himself/herself as divine entities. He also stressed on the fact that one could also realise truth by dropping or getting rid of the “I” factor or “ego” within oneself.
It is said that Saint Kabir was illiterate and uneducated. Hence, none of his scriptures were actually written by the saint himself. They were compiled and written down by his devotees and spread across by word of mouth. The saint was also against casteism. He described the essence of a guru in one’s life through his couplets.
Written by - Deepthi K