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What was the impact of Bhakti movement on the social life of India?

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user3011601 | eNotes Newbie

Posted May 10, 2013 at 2:23 PM via web

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What was the impact of Bhakti movement on the social life of India?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted May 11, 2013 at 4:27 PM (Answer #1)

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The original question had to be edited.  I would suggest that one of the most dominant impacts of the Bhakti movement in India was its denouncement of castes.  The movement was a fervent desire to reclaim religious fervor and belief.  Yet, this desire was fundamentally liberal.  It was a movement that stressed that anyone can move closer to God simply by chanting the name of the divine.  The egalitarian approach to worship as well as the basic idea that spiritual exploration is open to all repudiates caste systems and social stratification.  

This becomes vitally important in social terms.  The rejection of the caste system that was a part of the Bhakti movement helped to liberalize Indian thought.  The social implication was a transformative one in which Indians were able to envision a world without a caste system or a pre- ordained social structure that denied opportunity and silenced voice.  This reformist tendency sought to create an India in which social divisions were secondary to spiritual equality.  The movement's fundamental timbre of constructing the divine as open to more people becomes its lasting testament to seeing the world without social divisions.


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