Ravidassia, a religion started by an Indian saint of the 14th-15th century, Guru Ravidass, has grown around his spiritual belief and lessons of universal brotherhood, tolerance, and message of loving your neighbour as a force for creating a just and humane society. In the Amritbani, which many Ravidassia's call the Amritbani Guru Ravidass Ji, contains 240 hymns by Guru Ravidass from the teachings of Guru Ravidas along with his teachings have been included. A common belief in the Ravidassia community is that Guru Ravidass disappeared from the world, leaving behind only his footprints.
In 14th century India, Guru Ravidass, a Dalit by birth, taught monotheistic spirituality and spread the message of equality through emancipation from the Indian caste system. He devoted his life to the service of India's suffering and sought to eradicate social inequalities, preaching love, compassion, mutual tolerance, universal brotherhood and oneness of mankind through his life and philosophy and working to bring social equality through the spiritual or Bhakti way. "Guru Ravidass was one of the greatest saints of the Bhakti movement whose teachings focused on equality of mankind and universal brotherhood," said Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
Begumpura is a term coined by Shri Guru Ravidass Ji, in the 15th Century, Banaras, India. “Begampura”. Be-gam-pura, or the land without sorrow. The spirit of the verse is this: Begampura is the name of the city where there is no suffering or anxiety, no fear or downfall/ Begampura is the city where there is sovereignty of god/ Where there is lasting peace and safety for all/ All are equal, no one is second or third. In the end, Guru Ravidas' bhajans reflect both a sense of poverty and caste humiliation and a desire to find a utopia without suffering, taxes or property; one that is, in the hymn “Begumpura” Guru RavidassJi postulates the world of his dreams. There willbe no distress, no tax, no restriction from going and coming, no fear in the world. It will be anideal place to live in. The preamble of the The Human Rights Charter of the United Nations has been prepared inconformity with theme of this hymn of Sri Guru Ravidass Ji. above all, a Begumpura or 'Queen City' of companionship:
The regal realm with the sorrowless name they call it Begumpura, a place with no pain, no taxes or cares, none owns property there, no wrongdoing, worry, terror, or torture. Oh my brother, I've come to take it as my own, my distant home, where everything is right... They do this or that, they walk where they wish, they stroll through fabled palaces unchallenged. Oh, says Ravidas, a tanner now set free, those who walk beside me are my friends
Guru Ravidass (also Raidas, Rohidas and Ruhidas in eastern India) was a North Indian Sant mystic of the bhakti movement who was active in the 15th century CE. Venerated in the region of Uttar Pradesh as well as the Indian state of Maharashtra, his devotional songs and verses made a lasting impact upon the bhakti movement. He is often given the honorific "Bhagat" or "Sant". He was a socio-religious reformer, a thinker, a theosophist, a humanist, a poet, a traveler, a pacifist and a spiritual figure before whom even head-priests of Benaras lay prostrate to pay homage.
He was a shoemaker of the Kutbandhla Chamar caste. His devotional songs were included in the Sikh holy book, the Adi Granth, by the fifth Sikh Guru, Guru Arjan Dev. There is also a larger body of hymns passed on independently that is claimed and attributed to Ravidas by some. Ravidas was subversive in that his devotionalism implied a leveling of the social divisions of caste and gender, yet ecumenical in that it tended to promote crossing of sectarian divides in the name of a higher spiritual unity. He taught that one is distinguished not by one's caste (jāti) but by one's actions (karma) and that every person has the right to worship God and read holy texts. He opened a frontal attack against the system of Untouchability. He rejected the tradition of Brahmin mediator to reach the Supreme Being. He also said that one need not to hide his caste or leave his low profession to reach God. He became a model for his fellow beings to overcome the hierarchical barriers of Brahminical social order and to establish Begumpura - a state without fear and sorrows. Guru Ravidass elevated the status of the labour by emphasizing on the fact that honest labour is empowering.
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Wed, 09 Jul 2014 14:45:00 -0700
Friend referred, but more still are members of the Ravidassia community in Strood. Dr William McCrea (in the Chair): Order. Two Members are standing. Mr Holloway: I was so interested in what my hon. Friend was saying—that is what happened there.
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