Bhakti Movement – A Reaction To Islam
Due to its teachings of simplicity, equality and brotherhood a large number of Hindus were attracted towards Islam. Soon Muslims became a formidable national entity due to popularity of Islam in Subcontinent. In order to halt the progress of Islam a number of Hindu nationalist movements emerged in India but they all failed blatantly. Then a reforms movement was initiated by some prominent Hindu preachers in different parts of South India. This reforms movement lasted from 9th to 15th century in India and it is called Bhakti movement.
What Was Bhakti Movement?
Bhakti is a Hindi word which means love and brotherhood. Bhakti movement was a systematic reformist movement initiated by a group of prominent Hindu preachers whose aim was to reform Hinduism in the light of teachings of Islam to make it more attractive for the masses and to prevent more people from embracing Islam. Some prominent Hindu reformers of Bhakti movement were Ramananda, Chaitanya, Bhagt Kabir, Ramanuja, Baba Guru Nanak and Dadu.
Main Features Of Bhakti Movement
Main features of the Bhakti Movement were;
- Believe in the unity of God
- Preaching of love and mutual respect
- Surrender to the will of God
- Negation of blind faith
- Negation of unethical ritual and customs
- Condemn caste system
- Negation of idol’s worshiping and so on.
Causes Of Bhakti Movement
Though some Hindu nationalists argued that Bhakti Movement started because of the atrocities of Muslim rulers who were forcing people to embrace Islam but this is not true. Real reason behind the initiation of Bhakti Movement was to halt the progress of Islam in Hindu Subcontinent. This idea can be easily proved from the above mentioned features of the movement which are the exact copies of the teachings of Islam.
By the time Islam was introduced to the people of Subcontinent, Hinduism which was the major religion of the area was filled with many unethical practices and beliefs. Those Hindus who were subject to molestation under Hinduism began instantly embracing Islam. To stop this process Bhakti Movement was started.