Spirtual Awareness


Life History of Bhakt Surdas

Sant Kavi Surdas was a 15th century blind saint, poet and musician, known for his devotional songs dedicated to Lord Krishna.

Surdas was born in the year 1535 in a village named Sihi near Delhi, in a poor Brahmin’s family. Surdas was born blind and because of this he was neglected by his family. This generated a feeling of dispassion in him and so he left his home and started living under a pepal tree near a beautiful lake. At that time his age was 18 years. But due to certain obstacles in his bhajan, he had to shift from this place to another spot called Runakta. In Runakta, he received the company of saints. Surdas could not get accustomed to this place too. So he reached Gau ghat, near the Yamuna banks in Mathura. Here he wrote poems and composed music.

At Gau ghat, Surdas came across Saint Shri Vallabhacharya. He saw the low profile, devotion and humbleness of Surdas and asked him to sing the leelas of Lord Krishna. Surdas said that he did not know the secret of Lord Krishna’s leelas. Shri Vallabhacharya accepted him as his disciple and recited him the Krishna leelas. The Lord’s leelas occupied his heart and mind. This inspired Surdas to create and sing the poems on the life of Shri Krishna. Later Surdas along with his Guru left for Gokul from Gau ghat. Surdas used to compose and sing the hymns based on Krishna leela to his Guru.

After sometime Surdas with his Guru dev went to Govardhan from Gokul. Here he saw Shri Nath ji’s temple and decided to spend the rest of his life in the holy feet of the Lord. By the grace of his Guru, he got the opportunity to sing the hymns for God at the temple. His daily routine was to visit Shri Nath ji’s temple and with great love and devotion offer the Lord new hymns.

Though Surdas was blind, he used to get the Divine darshan (sight) of Lord Krishna and Radha Rani and he could actually tell the attire worn by God.

One day a priest at the temple planned to test his ability. He dressed the Lord in an altogether different attire, with the garlands of pearl beads instead of the clothes. To everyone’s surprise, Surdas ji could narrate the exact attire worn by the Lord through his divine vision.

Once, blind Surdas ji fell into a well. He called upon Lord Krishna for help. Lord Krishna came immediately to help Surdas. Krishna took hold of his devotees hand and pulled him out of the well. When Surdas came out of the well, Krishna began to leave. As soon as Surdas recognised the divine touch of Krishna, his heart sank and with tears filled his eyes. He said –

हाथ छुड़ाये जात हो, निर्बल जानि के मोय।
हृदय से जब जाओ, तो सबल जानूँगा तोय।।

हाथ छुड़ाये जात हो, निर्बल जानि के मोय।
हृदय से जब जाओ, तो सबल जानूँगा तोय।।

Radha Rani also came to meet his devotee. Surdas recognised Radha Rani by the ting-a-ling sound of her anklets. Surdas fell onto her lotus feet and took her anklets. When Radha Rani asked him to return her anklets, he refused. At that moment, Lord Krishna gave him the vision in his eyes and asked him to ask for a wish. Surdas returned the anklets and said, “My Lord, you have already given me everything. After receiving your divine darshan (sight) there is nothing more left for me to see in this world. Please make me blind as before. Krishna granted him his wish.

At the age of 85 years, Surdas left his physical body and entered the divine abode of Lord Krishna ‘Golok Dhaam’.

Few hymns (Pad) written by Bhakt Surdas ji:-

  • प्रभू! जी मोरे औगुन चित न धरौ ।

     सम दरसी है नाम तुम्हारौ , सोई पार करौ ॥ 
     इक लोहा पूजा मैं राखत , इक घर बधिक परौ ॥
     सो दुबिधा पारस नहिं जानत, कंचन करत खरौ ॥ 
     इक नदिया इक नार कहावत, मैलौ नीर भरौ ॥
     जब मिलिगे तब एक बरन ह्वै, गंगा नाम परौ ॥ 
     तन माया जिव ब्रह्म कहावत, सूर सु मिलि बिगरौ॥
     कै इनकौ निर्धार कीजिये, कै प्रन जात टरौ ॥

  • अंखियां हरि-दरसन की प्यासी।

     देख्यौ चाहति कमलनैन कौ¸ निसि-दिन रहति उदासी।।
     आए ऊधै फिरि गए आंगन¸ डारि गए गर फांसी।
     केसरि तिलक मोतिन की माला¸ वृन्दावन के बासी।।
     काहू के मन को कोउ न जानत¸ लोगन के मन हांसी।
     सूरदास प्रभु तुम्हरे दरस कौ¸ करवत लैहौं कासी।।