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by Dr Pabitrapran Goswami,

We find altogether 36 ragas attached to the Bargits and the Ankar gits: Ahir, Asowari, Barari, Basanta, Belowar, Bhatiyali, Bhupali, Dhanasri, Gandhar, Gauri, Kalyan, Kamod, Kanara, Kau, Kau-Kalyan-Sindhura, Kedar, Karunyakedar, Lalit, Mahur or Maur, Mahur-Dhanasri, Mallar, Nat, Nat-Mallar, Purbi, Saranga, Sindhura, Sri, Sri-Gandhar, Sri-Gauri, Sripayar, Suhai, Syam, Syamgera, Tur, Tur-Basanta and Tur-Bhatiyali. Out of these some are unitary in character and some others are of mixed or compound nature, involving the fusion of two or more ragas. ... more

by Dr Pabitrapran Goswami

Prabandha Gana:

        Dhrupadaand Kirttana or Kriti are the earliest forms of music extant today in the Hindusthani and the Karnatik systems. The Prabandha Gana evidently represented a stage in the evolution of Indian music prior to that of Dhrupada and Kirttana, a stage till which perhaps the ragas and the talas enjoyed uniformity in almost all parts of India.   sarngadeva, the 13th century scholar cum musician, in his encyclopaedic work Sangita Ratnakara, speaks of three chief types of Prabandha, viz., Suda, Ali and Biprakirna and of two chief sub-divisions of Suda-Prabandha : suddha-suda and Salaga-suda... more

by Dr Sanjib Kumar Borkakoti

Srimanta Sankaradeva is generally remembered as a religious preceptor, who founded the Eka Sarana Nâma Dharma order. But that is not his only identity. His activities were not confined to the realm of religion alone. His activities were multi-dimensional. He contributed so many things to the society, or to be more precise to the humanity. He created many new things, new type of building structure, new social structure, new type of social management, new educational system, new food, new health care, new musical instrument, new music, new dance form, new form of play, new form of textile art, new form of painting and so on. There was innovation in almost all his activities. Very often he did not follow the beaten track. He charted his own path. His new path was always so attractive and suitable that people soon started to follow him in the new path.... more

by Dr Pabitrapran Goswami

            Nothing can be definitely said about the exact form of Assamese music in the pre-Sankaradeva time. However, scholars have often tried to trace back the lineage of classical art and music in Assam right from the days of Bharata’sNatya sastra. Out of the four different forms of drama, viz., Daksinatya, Awanti, Pancal-Madhyama andOdra-Magadhi, referred to  in the Natyasastra, the form called Odra-Magadhi was, according to Bharata, in vogue in the entire north-eastern region covering Anga, Banga, Kalinga, Magadh, Nepal and Pragjyotispur (ancient Assam). During those days dance and music were indispensable parts of a drama.... more

Admin Feb 19

By Dr Pabitrapran Goswami

The name Bargit is popularly ascribed to a special set of devotional songs composed during the late 15th and the early 16th centuries A.D. by Srimanta Sankaradeva and his disciple Sri Sri Madhavadeva, the two chief exponents of Vaishnavism in Assam. According to the Carita Puthis1, Sankaradeva and Madhavadeva referred to their songs as git only. The adjectival prefix Bar2, therefore, must have been a later reverential addition by the devout disciples of the two Vaishnava priests, which might bear upon the musical grandeur3 of the songs too. ... more

Admin Feb 16
by Dr Sanjib Kumar Borkakoti 

Study about the life and works of Srimanta Sankaradeva is of great academic importance in Assam. The father of Assamese nation, Srimanta Sankaradeva is revered by people from all walks of life in Assam. 

The literary and cultural contributions by the saint continue to influence the modern creative works. But strangely very little is known about him outside the state. ... more


Dr Sanjib Kumar Borkakoti

Srimanta Sankaradeva was one of the foremost religious philosophers in the world. His religion Eka Sharana Nâma Dharma laid the foundation for a new religious philosophy. The present author has named this philosophy as Vivartanavâda as it facilitates the elevation of the Jîva from the primary dual state to the non-dual state of identity with Brahma. The pertinent features of this philosophy are : ... more

by Dr Sanjib Kumar Borkakoti

Srimanta Sankaradeva was the first playwright in all modern Indian languages. It started with his play Chihna-yatra, which was enacted in 1468 AD at Bordowa in front of 10,000 audience. His plays are known as Ankiya play. Enactment of the Ankiya plays authored by Srimanta Sankaradeva and his successor-disciple Madhavadeva is called Bhaona. Many plays have been written since then by different Assamese playwrights in the style of the Ankiya plays. But these later compositions are not called Ankiya play. So Ankiya Bhaona means the enactment of only the Ankiya plays authored by Srimanta Sankaradeva and Madhavadeva. ... more

by Dr Madan Sarma

Translation has played a crucial role in the development of Assamese literature. In fact, translation and adaptation of important Sanskrit texts-both religious and secular-have helped the growth  and development of various forms/genres of literature in a number of Indian languages. ... more

by Dr Sanjib Kumar Borkakoti

Srimanta Sankaradeva created a new religion, Eka Sarana Nâma Dharma. But he was not a religious preceptor alone. He had multi-faceted talent in the disciplines of dance, music, drama, verses etc. He also created a new social structure. He may be placed among the all time greats in the world for his role in social reform alone. The time when he was born in was a time of terror and tyranny. ... more

by Dr Ananyaa Barua

Srimanta Sankaradeva's Eka Sarana Nama Dharma was an attempt to revive the pristine aspect of Gita's philosophy of complete self-surrender in Love. God to Srimanta Sankaradeva was above duality, above Purusha and Prakriti. 'There was none but One' was his creed. Mahapurushiya or Eka Sarana Nama Dharma centers round this core principle. In the Shvetashvataropanishad, it is found : ... more

by Dr Arshiya Sethi

The Sattras were born out of the Bhakti movement as it came to Assam. Like the Bhakti movements in many other parts of India, the Bhakti movement in Assam, called the Eka Sarana Nama Dharma, had a creative audio visual aspect for its propagation. Through his creative genius Sankaradeva was able to mould the Cultural life of Assam. The epicenter of the cultural life of Assam was the Sattra, which for five centuries has been the crucible of the Sattriya cultural tradition.  ... more

by Dr Sanjib Kumar Borkakoti

I have always considered Srimanta Sankaradeva as my role model. His multi-faceted contributions fascinate me. Our socio-cuItural lives are permeated by his influence even now. I feel proud that he was born in Assam. But very little was known about him outside Assam till some time ago. It has therefore been my endeavour to let people know about him and his unparalleled works. I have written what I have learnt about his life, works and philosophy. ... more

Mahapurusha Srimanta Sankaradeva and Guru Nanak : a comparative study


Dr Sanjib Kumar Borkakoti


Mahapurusha Srimanta Sankaradeva (1449-1568) and Guru Nanak (1469-1539) were both leading lights of medieval Bhakti movement in Bharatavarsha. They both left permanent marks on the society in the sub-continent in both religious and cultural spheres. There are many similarities in the religious principles preached by these two great social reformers. ... more

by Dr Sanjib Kumar Borkakoti


India is a great country with great cultural wealth. But her enormity also means that dimensions of all her problems also happen to be very big. Her social system has been such that from time to time it has required the service of great reformers to do away with the undesired accumulations. Srimanta Sankaradeva and Swami Vivekananda were two such great reformers who redeemed the then societies of unwarranted growths. They had different approaches to the socio-religious problems, but had many common grounds, which make interesting reading. They are two rare religious leaders who made clear statements on the Chaturbarna system and its negative impact on the Indian society. Their concerns remain valid even now, long after they have passed away from the scene. ... more


by Dr Sanjib Kumar Borkakoti

Madhavadeva's father Govinda Bhuyan was an accountant of Pratap Rai, the king of Banduka, presently in Rangpur district of Bangladesh. Govinda had earlier migrated from Kannauj along with other Bhuyans. He married a girl named Anuchita in Banduka. Anuchita died at an early age leaving an infant son, Damodar. When Damodar grew up, Govinda transferred his office to Damodar and set out for upper Assam with some merchandise. He reached Tembuwani and was glad to find the Bhuyans residing there. Srimanta Sankaradeva persuaded him to marry again and arranged a match with his cousin Manorama. Srimanta Sankaradeva also appointed Govinda as 'Bora' or a revenue officer of the Bhuyan kingdom at Rowta. ... more

Vaishnava Literary Tradition of Assam

by Dr Sanjib Kumar Borkakoti

             Assam has a rich tradition of Vaishnavite literature. The majority of the people in Assam are believers of Vaishnavite faith. So the literary activities in Assam have been dominated by the Vaishnavite literature. The history of such literature goes back to the sixth century, when Puroshottama Gajapati authored a book named Deepikâ Sanda. An emperor of the Jitari dynasty, Puroshottama Gajapati can be called the pioneer of Vaishnavite literature in Assam. Ratnapura was the capital of his empire Kamarupa, the ancient name of Assam. He wrote this book by taking ingredients from different Sanskrit treatises like Hangsakâki, Jâmal Samhitâetc. He criticised the decadent Tantrik rituals in his book. But since he was not a theoretician, there was not much theoretical analysis in the book. He predicted that there would be dominance of unrighteousness in Bhâratavarsha. ... more

December 16th 2012: It was about the time the sun had positioned low in the western sky to call it a day. My eyes swayed between my wrist watch and the western sky. I was accompanied by my other half, Sailaja, in my small car that kept on speeding on the familiar kind of gravel laid rural road. I was speeding because I had to reach my destination before it grew dark. She kept a control over my speed driving especially on such a road with frequent warnings to slow down. I was late owing to some other preoccupation. My heartbeat grew louder and faster. Oh God if there had been something, we never knew, that could stop the flow of time. At last, the man in the paddy field who was reaping his crop pointed to a distant structure and said “Look at that compound having a house. That is what you are looking for.” Yes my esteemed readers it was my today’s destination, a long standing structure – “GOPAL ATA’S THAN” at Old Bhawanipur, somewhat three kilometers westward from the main Chowk of Bhawanipur at NH 37 of Barpeta District. What feelings did stirred our emotions at that moment when we arrived at the main gate of the compound; we just cannot express it in words. It’s a beautifully placed area amid paddy fields with a soothing, divine serenity that can make your mind and soul free of all anxieties. ... more

Nataraj Das Dec 21 '12 · Comments: 7

Srimanta Sankaradeva is regarded as the “Jagatguru”(Lord of the Universe) and “Mahapurush”(the great man or super human being) by the Assamese people. In fact he was the greatest Vaishnavite saint of Assam. Sankaradeva was responsible for ushering into Assam a wave of the new Vaishnavite(Bhakti) movement which flooded practically the whole of India.... more



             মহাপুৰুষ শ্ৰীমন্ত শঙ্কৰদেৱে প্ৰৱৰ্ত্তন কৰা নৱ-বৈষ্ণৱ ধৰ্মৰ ধৰ্মীয় অনুষ্ঠান দুটিৰ এটি হৈছে নামঘৰ আৰু আনটি হৈছে সত্ৰ। আমাৰ আলোচ্য বিষয় হৈছে নামঘৰ। শঙ্কৰদেৱৰ ধৰ্ম প্ৰচাৰৰ কেন্দ্ৰস্হল হৈছে এই নামঘৰ। এই নামঘৰক কেন্দ্ৰ কৰিয়েই গুৰুজনাৰ প্ৰৱৰ্ত্তিত ‘একশৰণ হৰি নামধৰ্ম’ বা ‘ভাগৱতী ধৰ্ম’ ই হিন্দু সমাজত প্ৰচাৰ আৰু প্ৰসাৰতা লাভ কৰি বৰ্ত্তি থাকিবলৈ সক্ষম হৈছে। গুৰজনাই প্ৰথমে নগাঁৱৰ বৰদোৱা(বটদ্ৰৱা) ত নামঘৰ প্ৰতিষ্ঠা কৰিছিল। ক্ৰমে অসমৰ সৰ্বত্ৰতে তেখেতৰ আদৰ্শৰে নামঘৰ গঢ় লৈ উঠে। নামঘৰত সাধাৰণতে চাৰিটা  প্ৰধান অংশ বা ঘৰ থাকে। এইকেইটা হৈছে – নামঘৰ বা কীৰ্ত্তন ঘৰ,মণিকূট,ছোঁ ঘৰ আৰু বাটচ’ৰা। ... more

Laksheswar Hazarika Jul 29 '12 · Rate: 5 · Comments: 1

One GOBINDA ATOI, a disciple of Mahapurusha SriSri Madhabdeva at Barpeta Sattra, once at midnight, was bitten by a deadly poisonous Cobra. For Gobinda Atoi a Bez (a knowledgeable person who treats patients with locally available herbal medicines in traditional way) was uncalled for and he resorted to NAAM KIRTAN, the Holy holistic way to recover himself from the effects of snakebite. Miraculously Gobinda Atoi got a speedy recovery from this dangerous state through prayer and recital of Holy Songs (NAAM KIRTAN) of God. Later when Gobinda Atoi once visited HEREMAD, people there reported to the king about the incident of snakebite and how Gobinda Atoi had recovered himself from the effect of snake poison. The King Heremeswar then played a trick. ... more

Nataraj Das Jul 14 '12 · Comments: 2
ধ্ৰুং ।। ৰে সোই গোপাল পিয়াৰু মেৰি প্ৰাণ আধাৰু ।
মধুপুৰী ৰহে দহে জীউ হামাৰু ।।

পদ ।। গোকুলক মাণিক কানু নৱ নিধি ।
হাতে হৰল নিকৰুণ বঙ্ক বিধি ।।
চান্দ বিনে ৰয়নী সজনি কিছো নোহে ।
হৰি বিনে বিৰিন্দা বিপিন নাহি শোহে ।।

Translation of a Bargeet(Kharachandra Geet)

RAAG-Dhanashri,  Taal-Porital

DHRUNG-Re Hui Gupal Piyaru Meri Prano Adharu ।

Modhupuri Rohe Dohe Jiu Hamaru ।।

PODE-Gukuloko Maniko Kanu Nowa Nidhi ।

Hate Horolo Nikoruno Bangkobidhi ।।

Saando Bine Royoni Hojoni Kisu Nuhe ।

Hori Bine Birinda Bipino Nahi Huhe ।।

DHRUNG-Kodombo Toru Tole Nobino Nirodo
Rusiro Hundoro Syamo ।
Bhuwono Muhono Muruti Monuhoro
Kohitu Nahi Upamo ।।

PODO-Bhruwo Monuhoro Noyono Sansaro
Bowono Sando Ujuro ।
Hakhite Omiya Borikhe Pekhi Hokhi
Jiwono Narohe Muro ।।

Kotona Jotone Bidhi Niromilo
Hundoro Kanuko Rupo ।
Pekhite Labonyo Laje Bhoie Punu
Kuti Monomotho Supo ।।

Rotono Bhukhono Joise Niromilo
Gogone Tara Huhaiwo ।
Kohoiwo Madhav Hamari Rohu mono
Nanda Nandano Paiwo ।।
Translated by Prof William L. Smith

[Reproduced from http://atributetosankaradeva.org with thanks] 

Hail Krishna, Vishnu Achyuta, the Supreme Lord.

Mounted on the shoulders of Garuda, he struck down his


In his joyful lila the son of Devaki

carried off the parijata flower for the sake of his beloved.

Victory to Krishna.... more

Admin Feb 23 '12

Translated by Dr. Satyendranath Sarma

[Reproduced from http://atributetosankaradeva.org with thanks]

A complete translation of the above named play, minus its verse portions which are meant to be sung in appropriate rāgas, is given below. The verse portions are metrical renderings of the prose dialogue and Sutradhāra’s commentaries.... more

Admin Feb 23 '12
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