Transformation in the Lives of Tamil Śaiva bhaktas




typology, Hinduism, Śiva, bhakti, nāyaṉārs, Tirumuṟai, Periya purāṇam


Transformation in the Lives of Tamil Śaiva bhaktas

The article deals with the tradition of the medieval South-Indian branch of Hinduism, which can be defined here as the religion of Tamil Śaiva bhakti reflected in the poetic compositions (the corpus Tirumuṟai) composed by a group of saints called nāyaṉārs (‘leaders’). Hagiographic sources of this tradition, first of all Periya purāṇam, and the nāyaṉārs’ poetic creations reveal some constant motifs which form a certain pattern, a typology of their legendary life-stories. They include: the encounter of a bhakta with Śiva, a trial (a test of devotion, an initiation, a heroic deed), a participation in the myth, rejection of sexual (family) life, emotional experience and revelation of a poetical gift.

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How to Cite

Dubyanskiy, Alexander. 2020. “Transformation in the Lives of Tamil Śaiva Bhaktas”. Cracow Indological Studies 22 (1):135-53.