This is the second part of the post on Haridasas.
The second innings of the Dasa Sahitya actually starts from Sripadaraja. When he was in Srirangam, he saw Tamil being used for offering prayers and Tamil compositions sung when people prayed at the RanganathaSwamyTemple.
When Sripadaraja came back to Mulabagal, he wanted to perform pooje in Kannada, compose in Kannada and even give discourses in Kannada. He did all of this and more and hence, he is universally acknowledges as the Bheeshma Pitamah of Dasa Sahitya.
He also gave a fresh fillip to writing devaranams in Kannada. Therefore, the second renaissance starts with him and this was continued further by his most beloved disciple, Vyasa Raja.
Sripadaraja Theertha (1404-1502)
He made Mulabagal his home and, therefore, came to be called as the Bard of Mulabagal.
He is known as the Bheeshma Pitamaha of Carnatic music and also of Haridasa sahitya. He is a pioneer in writing suladis in Kannada and he has written the only Dandaja in Kannada sahitya.
Some of his famous devaranamas are:
“Ne ittahange iruveno hariye…”, “Kangalidyathako kaveri rangana nodada…” and Bhushanake Bhushana.
Sripadaraja initially started composing under the Ankita of Gopinatha. Later, his ankita was rangavittala. He has composed many Kritis in both Carnatic and Hindustani Raagas. One such rare Kriti is: “Nana nanadana paahi”, which can be sung in nine different Raagas.
His other compositions include Gopi Geethe, Bramara Geethe, Lakshmi Narisimha pradurbhava Dandaka and other compositions. He is also the author of the Kannada work, Madhwa Nama, which is an exquisite piece of poetry.
His Brindavana is in Nasasimha Theertha near Mulabagal on the Bangalore Tirupati road.
Vyasa Raja (1447-1539)
He deserves special mention as the seer who founded both the Dasa Koota and the Vyasa Koota. He gave deekshe to Purandara Dasa and several others.
A disciple of Sripadaraja, he was a rekowned scholar in Sanskrit and Kannada. He wasthe Rajguru of six Emperors of the Vijayanagar Dynasty, including Krishan Deva Raya.
His most famous composition, which even today is a evergreen song, is Krishna Nee Begana Baro. His other compositons are: “Namo Parvathipati”, which is highly autobiographical and hints at the tussle between Sanyasa and Grihasta.
The other compositions are Avava Bageyinda: Bharatipatiya Pada: Eduraro Guruve Samararo: Ellimaya Yaadane: Yenna Bimbamuruthiva: Govinda Govinda Krishna: Jarathvavanu Maadida: Jayavayu Hanumantha: Kava Divayu: Krishna Krishna Krishna: Labavahudu Harikathamura: Mahiume Salade Iste: Pavamana Sanjatha Maruti and Tore Begane Toraja Nayane.
The brindavana of Vyasa Raja is in Nava Brindavana, Hampi.
Vadiraja Theertha (1480-1600)
He was the pontiff of the Sode or Vadiraja Matha. He lived for 120 years. He was a disciple if Vyasa Raja. He was a contemporary of Purandara Dasa, Kanaka Dasa, Belur Vaikunta Dasa, Srinivasa Theertha, Rama Theertha, Vijendra Theertha, Sudhindra Theertha and many others.
He is an outatsnding Sanskrit scholar and his Rukminisa Vijaya is a masterpiece. He was a devotee of Hayagreeva and he has composed many songs on him.
Vadiraja Theertha has composed songs in Sanskrit and Kannada. . Some of compositions are Narayana Enniro, Govinda Gopala Gopika Vallabha and Vani Paramakalyani. In Enu sukritava maadidalu Yashodhe, he describes the good fortune of Yashodha, as she is able to call Krishna as her son.
Vadiraja reformed the Paryaya system of the Sri Krishna matha of Udupi. He revealed his identity as Bhavi Sameera only after he entered Brindavana in Sode. He dictated his autobiography from the Brindavan to a person who was dumb and deaf. This work is called Vrndavanakhyanam.
His Brindavana is in Sode or Sonde near Sirsi.
Purandara Dasa (1484-1564)
Born as Srinivasa Nayaka, he was a disciple of Vyasa Raj aand obtained Deekshe from him. As Srinivasa Nayaka, he was called “Navakoti Narayana”. He renounced wealth and took to a life of a dasa. He was an amsha of Narada muni. He is belived to have written 4,75,000 compositons of which only 800 survive.
He is called the pioneer of Carnatic music and the man who set into motition the Haridasa Sahitya. He selected 32 raagas (Batthisi) in which Carnatic compositions were to be created and this has been followed for centuries.
He was an ardent devotee of Vittala of Pandrapur. He died at the Purandara mantapa in Hampi.
Almost all the songs of Purandara Dasa are popular and many of them are sung everyday such as Baro Krishnaiah, Jagadhorana, Bhagyada Lakshmi Baaramma, Adisidalu Yashode, Taarakka Bindege, Yaare Rangaba, Yaadava Nee Baa, tamboori meetidaava, amma nimmaManeyalli, aaparadhi nanalla, bandidella barali, deva bandana, hari Smarane maado, Oodi baaraiah, Donkubalada Nayakare, Ragi thandeera, Gajavadane Beduve, rama mantraya and many others.
Vaikuntha Dasa (1480-1550)
Like Purandara Dasa, he too was a rich man but a miser. He lived in Belur, Hassan.
One day, he was presented a Hayagriva Saligrama and told that by performing pooja, his wealth would increase manifold.
When he began performing regular pooje, he became devoted to Lord Hayagriva and he lost interest in the materialistic world. Vadiraja Theertha then blessed him and named him Vaikunta Dasa.
Subsequently, Vaikunta Dasa, though a Srivaishnava, began composing Kirtanas in Kannada on Sri Hari with Ankitha nama of Vaikunta. Among his compositionsis a song called Kapatamata and many Suladis
He rarely, if ever, stirred out of Belur. He was a close friend and companion of Purandara Dasa and a disciple of Vadiraja Theertha.
His devotion to Hari was such that Krishna danced in front of him when he sang. All the three dasas, Vadiraja, Kanaka and Purandara have paid trubuted to Vaikunta Dasa.
Kanaka Dasa (1508-1606)
He was a shishya of Vyasa Theertha or Vyasa Raja and a contemporary of Purandara Dasa and Belur Vaikunta Dasa. He was a devotee of Adi Keshava.
He was a prolific composer and hemade Kaginale is home. He has hundreds of suladis to his name. He is next only to Purandara Dasa in the Dasa sampradaya.
Kanakadasa has many popular songs such as Bhajasi Badukelo Manuja, Nee maya olago ninnolu, Bagiluna teredu Seveyanu. His other works include Nalacharitre, Haribhaktisara, Nrisimhastava and Ramadhanyacharitre, a rare work on class struggle.
He wrote two hundred and forty Kirtanes, Ugabhogas, padas and mundiges or philosophical songs. “Ellaru Maduvudu Hottegagi”, is a famous composition.
Guru Purandara Dasa
He is one of the sons of Purandara Dasa. He was known as
Giriraja, before being initiated into the Haridasa fold by his father-Purandara Dasa-himself.
He has written several compositions but many of them appears to have been lost. In one of his compositions, which start with the line, “In the elephant”, he has given a beautiful account of the nature of the soul, Sri Hari’s moola roopa or form and several other spiritual aspects.
He too was a son of Purandara Dasa. He collected the works of his father and left Vijayanagar after the defeat and death of the Vijayanagar Emperor, Rama Raya, in the battle of Talikota near Bijapur in 1565.
Madhwapathi has composed a song in 1564 which gives us the exact day and time when Purandara Dasa died.
Vyasa Raja has referred to Madhwapathi Dasa when he gifted some villages to him. There is a stone inscription to this effect in a temple near Hampi or Vijayaagar. Madhwapati was reborn as Vijaya Dasa. “Krishna Krupe maado”, is one of his most famous songs and it is in his ankita Madhwapati Vittala Dasa.
Mahipati Dasa (1611-1681)
Mahipati Dasa hailed from Kakandaki in Bijapur district. He was born in 1611 to Koneri Raya or Koneri Rao. His guru was Kolhar (Kolhar is a small town on the banks of the Krishna near Bijapur) Prahalad Krishnacharya.
Mahipati worked as an accountant in the office of the Nawab of Hyderabad for some time.
He knew several languages including Kannada, Sanksirt, Marathi, Urdu, Hindi and Persian. His most famous composition is titled “Kolu”.
The song is as follows:
kOlu kOlennakOle kOlu kOlennakOle
kOlunikkuta banni bAlErellaru kUDi
myAlye maMdirada hAdEli kOle
myAlye maMdiradoLu bAlamukuMdatAnu
lOlyADuta oLagiddAne kOle
AdigiMtalyade hAdi anAdiyu
sAdhisa banni odaginnu kOle
sAdhisi baralikke sAdhyavAgutalyAde
bhEdisi nODi manadali kOle
jANyEru nIvu tiLakoLLikOle
jANyEru nIvu kANade hOgabyADi
jANrisuthAne sadguru kOle
sadgurupAdake sadbhAvaviTTu nEvu
sadbhOdha kEli sAdhisi kOle
sAdhisi kELi nIvu budhajanaroDagUDi
caduratanadali ati byAge kOle
arahuveMda sIreyanuTTU kuravheMba kuppasali
iruvaMti puShTali muDidinnu kOle
muDidu baralu pUrNa oDigUDi barutAne
baDAvanA dAri balagoMbe kOle
balagoMbe sAdhanavu nelegODu mADabEku
valavhAMga tAne SrIhari kOle
SrIhari muMde nIvu sOhya tiLidubanni
sAhyamADuva ihaparake kOle
ihaparake dAta mahipatiswAmi
SrIpatistuti kODaDalikke pUrNa
bhukti muktiya nEDu tAne kOle
Guru Mahipati Dasa
He was the son of Mahipati Dasaru. He took to a life oflitarature and learning, while his brother, Devaraya, took to arms. While Devaraya became a well-known warrior, he later headed a small principality.
Guru Mahipati Dasa was earlier known as Krishnaraya. He took Dasa Deeksha from his father and carried on the tradition of his illustrious father.