Anugraha Bhaashanam by Sringeri Acharya on Bhakti and the Marathi saadhus

Sri Gurubhyo Namaha
A translation of a part of an Anugraha Bhaashanam given by Jagadguru of Sringeri Sri Sri Bharati Tirtha Mahaswamiji about Bhakti towards Ishwara and the Marathi Nath Parampara saadhus.

The video is here. The Acharya is speaking in Tamil –


“It is not only for the aarta bhakta (one who desires to get rid of suffering) or the arthaarthi bhakta (one who desires wealth of some kind) that Ishwara-aashraya is important,even the jnaani does it too. That is Ishwara’s speciality –

Atmaaraamaascha munayah nirgrantha api
urukrame kurvanti ahaitukIm bhaktim
ittham bhootaguno harih

Why do they(jnaanis) have such Bhakti towards Ishwara? There is no cause for this, it is ahaituka bhakti. The idea of Bhagavan invokes Bhakti in them, period.

That is why, Bhagavatpaada Shankaracharya, inspite of being a great tattvajnaani, had great bhakti towards Ishwara and composed many stotras; because Ishwara is the storehouse of all great qualities.

Therefore everyone should take the aashraya under Ishwara (surrender to Ishwara) with great bhakti and shraddha. This is very important. In the Bhakti sutras we come across the statement defining bhakti – “saa tvasmin parama-prema-rupaa”. This parama-prema, highest-love towards Ishwara, is bhakti. The feeling should be that “There is no one for me except Ishwara. Ishwara alone is there for me”, this feeling is called parama-prema.

It is in this parama-prema bhakti maarga, in this way of parama-prema bhakti, that Tukaramji, Jnaneshwar, Nivrittinaath, had stationed themselves and showed the path of such bhakti to all. Especially, Sri Jnaneshwar… who lived only for 21 years. His charitra, his life history, is indeed wonderful. Even Bhagavatpada Shankaracharya lived for 32 years, but Sri Jnaneshwar lived only for 21 years. In that 21 years, he had composed the wonderful commentary on Bhagavad Gita called Jnaneshwari.

It is at the end of this Jnaneshwari that this song called “Pasaydaan” comes about. I (Acharya) like it very much, especially when it sung in the Maharashtrian style.

In this manner, such Mahatmas have done greatly contributed to the welfare of the world by the propagation of the bhakti marga. “

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