Religious Histories- The Bhakti-Sufi Tradition: NBSE Class 12 notes

Share with others

a boy praying, illustrating the chapter Religious Histories- The Bhakti-Sufi Tradition

Get summary, textual answers, solutions, notes, extras, PDF to NBSE Class 12 (Arts) History (Themes in Indian History) chapter 8 “Religious Histories: The Bhakti-Sufi Tradition”. However, the educational materials should only be used for reference and students are encouraged to make necessary changes.

Introduction

The Bhakti movement emerged during the medieval period in India as a socio-religious movement aimed at purging Hinduism of its evils and protecting it from the spread of Islam. The movement focused on devotion (Bhakti) as a means to achieve salvation and was propagated by various Hindu saints and reformers like Ramananda, Kabir, Sadna, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, Ravidas, and Guru Nanak Dev. The Vaishnava and Shaiva sects of Hinduism particularly adopted this devotional approach. Sufism in Islam also progressed during this period and greatly influenced the lives of people.

Textual traditions regarding religious beliefs are crucial for understanding the history of the Bhakti-Sufi movements. These traditions include contributions from poet-saints who expressed themselves orally in regional languages, with their compositions later compiled by disciples or devotees. However, these sources pose challenges for historians due to their fluid nature and the tendency for later generations to modify or abandon certain ideas.

The Bhakti movement originated in South India and was advocated by Shankaracharya. It gained momentum during the Delhi Sultanate (1206-1526) in response to iconoclastic Muslim preachers who criticised Hinduism and sought to convert Hindus to Islam. In order to defend itself, Hinduism attempted to purge itself of empty rituals, the caste system, and idol worship.

Textual questions and answers

I. Very Short Answer Questions

1. What do you know about Sama?

Answer: During “Sama”, Sufi compositions were usually recited in hospices. In Delhi, the Chishti Sufis adopted the local language, while the followers of the Chisti Silsila conversed in Hindi, the language of the local people. Sufi saint Baba Farid composed verses in the Punjabi language. Some of his verses were placed in Adi Granth, the sacred book of the Sikhs.

2. Give any two causes of the birth of Bhakti movement.

Answer: The two causes of the birth of the Bhakti movement were the evil practices of the Hindus and the influence of Vaishnavism.

3. Who were Alvars?

Answer: Alvars were poet-saints who belonged to the Bhakti movement in South India. They traveled from place to place singing hymns in Tamil in praise of their gods and identified certain shrines as the abodes of their deities.

Missing answers are only available to registered users. Please register or login if already registered. How to register? Click on Menu and select Register

6. Who was the founder of Islam?

Answer: Prophet Muhammad was the founder of Islam.

7. Who was Ulama?

Answer: The Ulama were scholars who were responsible for ensuring that Muslim rulers governed according to the Shariyat, the law governing the Muslim community based on the Quran and the hadiths (traditions of Prophet Muhammad).

8. Who was the founder of Suhrawardi Silsila in India?

Answer: The Suhrawardi Silsila was established in India by the Makhdum Bahauddin Zakriya of Multan.

II. Multiple Choice Questions

(i) The principal deities of the Vedic Pantheon is:

Answer: (iv) All the above

(ii) Alwar and Nayanars belong to:

Answer: (ii) Tamil Nadu

(iii) Chidambaram is the temple of:

Answer: (i) Shiva

(iv) Khanqah was the centre of:

Answer: (iii) Worshipping

(v) ‘Sharia’ is the law governing to which community?

Answer: (i) Muslim

(vi) Khwaja Muinuddin is popularly known as:

Answer: (iii) Gharib Nawaz

III. Short Answer Type Questions-l

1. What does Bhakti Movement mean?

Answer: Bhakti Movement refers to a religious reform movement that originated in India during the period of the Delhi Sultanate (1206-1526). It is based on the idea of Bhakti, which means single-minded devotion and love to the Supreme God. The movement adopted the method of devotion as a means of attaining salvation or freedom from the bondage of birth and death. It was a response to the challenge of Islam that threatened the Hindu society, and it aimed to purify Hinduism by purging itself of some of its evil practices such as empty ritual practices, rigours of the caste system, and idol worship.

2. Who were Alvars?

Answer: The Alvars were a group of poet-saints who lived in South India between the 6th and 9th centuries CE. They were devotees of Vishnu and composed devotional hymns in Tamil in praise of their gods. They identified certain shrines as the abodes of their deities and built large temples at many of these sites, which later became centers of pilgrimage. The hymns composed by the Alvar saints were collected into the Nalayira Divya Prabandham, which is considered the most sacred text in Tamil and raised the status of Tamil as a language of religious writing.

3. Give the names of any four well known reformers of Bhakti movement.

Answer: Some of the well-known religious reformers who adopted the cult of Bhakti to fight against the danger of Islam and the Brahmanical tyranny were Ramanand, Kabir, Sadna, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu and Guru Nanak Dev.

Missing answers are only available to registered users. Please register or login if already registered. How to register? Click on Menu and select Register

8. What do you mean by Sufism?

Answer: Sufism is a mystical Islamic belief system that emphasizes the attainment of spiritual knowledge and experience through personal intuition and communication with God. Sufis believe in the Quran as the holy word of God, but interpret it mystically, and they have absorbed ideas and practices from other religions. The Sufis did not form a single organized sect and had neither a prophet nor a sacred book nor a unified code of religious doctrines.

9. Give the names of the four Silsilas of Sufism.

Answer: The four Silsilas of Sufism are Chishti, Suhrawardi, Qadiri, and Nakshbandi.

10. What is the importance of Murshid in Sufi Ideology?

Answer: According to Sufi ideology, an individual must have a religious guide (murshid) through whom he can communicate with God. A person who has no religious guide, has no religion (Jis ka koi pir nahin uska koi dharam nahin). The pir is the raft or ladder which enables a man to reach the goal of life. It is through the pir (murshid) alone that one can attain knowledge. Devotion to the murshid is the worship of God. Sufi Shaikhs were styled as murshids or pirs, and their devotees were murids. It was the foremost duty of the murid to obey the murshid. Usually, the murshid appointed his successor during his lifetime. The pir guided his followers in all matters, both mundane and spiritual. He also looked after the shrine or Khanqah. The Shaikhs, murshids or pirs, were highly venerated. After their death, their tombs became places of pilgrimage for the devotees.

IV. Short Answer Type Questions-II

1. Describe the origin of Bhakti Movement.

Answer: The Bhakti Movement originated in India during the period of the Delhi Sultanate (1206-1526). It was a movement of religious reform that adopted the method of devotion (Bhakti) as a means of attaining salvation or freedom from the bondage of birth and death. The movement was not entirely new, as it had its origins in the South and was advocated by Shankracharya. It received impetus in the middle ages from the presence of iconoclastic Muslim preachers who criticized the Hindu religion and attempted to convert Hindus to Islam. Hinduism responded by purging itself of some of its evil practices, such as empty ritual practices, rigours of the caste system, and idol worship.

2. How was the Bhakti movement an all-India movement?

Answer: The Bhakti movement became the dominant feature of Hinduism in the 14th and 15th centuries when the challenge of Islam threatened the Hindu society. It took the form of the Vaishnava sect in Northern India with peculiar devotion to two avatars of Vishnu namely, Rama and Krishna. The movement was restarted by Ramanuja, Nimbaka, and Madhava, all from South India. The people greatly venerated the saints and reformers like Shankaracharya, Ramanujacharya, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, Ramananda, Namdev, Guru Nanak Dev, and gradually, their followers established buildings, monasteries, shrines, temples, and gurdwaras at the places of their birth and connected with other events of their lives. These places developed into centers of pilgrimage. Therefore, the Bhakti movement spread throughout India, and it became an all-India movement.

3. Explain with examples what historians mean by the integration of cults.

Answer: Historians refer to the integration of cults as the process by which local or regional deities were incorporated into the larger framework of Hinduism. This process involved giving these deities an identity within the Puranic framework by equating them with the principal male or female deities of Hinduism.

For example, in Puri (in Orissa), a local deity whose image was made by local tribal specialists was recognised as a form of Vishnu, the Lord of the world. Similarly, the worship of goddesses in the form of stones smeared with ochre was widespread, and these local deities were frequently incorporated within the Puranic framework by giving them an identity as a wife of the principal male deities. These goddesses were equated with Lakshmi, the wife of Vishnu, and with Parvati, the wife of Shiva.

The integration of cults was not a one-way process, as the Puranic traditions also incorporated elements from local and regional cults. This process of integration and adaptation helped to create a more cohesive and inclusive Hinduism, which was able to accommodate a wide range of local and regional beliefs and practices.

4. Describe the teachings of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.

Answer: Chaitanya Mahaprabhu was a saint and founder of Vaishnavism in Bengal. He preached the religion of one God under the name of Krishna. Like his predecessors, Chaitanya too laid stress upon perfect devotion to God as the only way to salvation. He condemned the caste system and preached the brotherhood of man. His disciples began to worship him as the incarnation of Sri Krishna or to be more exact Radha and Krishna united into one personality. Chaitanya made extensive travels in Bengal, Orissa, the Deccan and the northern India. His followers included the Hindus from the lower classes of society and even some Muslims. He spent the last 18 years of his life at the Jagannatha temple at Puri and died in 1533.

Missing answers are only available to registered users. Please register or login if already registered. How to register? Click on Menu and select Register

9. What were the differences between the Chishti and the Suhrawardi orders of the Sufism?

Answer: The Suhrawardi and the Chishti Orders differed in respect of religious practices as well as in their attitude towards secular activities. The Suhrawardi Sufis took greater care of their families and devoted more time to the upbringing and training of their sons than the Chishtis. They held that living in luxury and active participation in political affairs were not a hindrance to spiritual progress. They held high offices in the government, maintained contact with the royal court, and kept aloof from the masses. The Chishtis, on the other hand, declined all kinds of gifts from the officials and did not accept the service of the state. They led an austerely and simple life and conversed with the people in their dialect. Besides, the Chishtis attached much significance to music or Sama for spiritual attainments but the Suhrawardis were against it.

10. How did Sufism become an all-India movement?

Answer: Sufism spread all over India gradually. During the reign of Muhammad-bin-Tughlaq, their ideas spread in the Deccan. The Sufi movement influenced the Bhakti reformers like Kabir and Guru Nanak Dev. The devotees of Sufism built magnificent tombs and shrines of the Sufi saints, which led to progress in art and architecture. As a result, the Sufi movement became an all-India movement.

V. Long Answer Type Questions-l

1. Describe the salient features of the Bhakti Movement.

Answer: The salient features of the Bhakti Movement were:

i. Belief in One God: The Bhakti reformers preached that there is One God. His name is the eternal truth. There is no such thing as God for the Hindus and God for the Muslims. The Bhakti reformers believed that Allah, Ishwar, Vishnu, Krishna, Rama, etc., are all the names of One God.

ii. Good Deeds: The Bhakti reformers preached that man should perform good deeds, i.e., speak the truth, practise purity, justice and goodness, live on honest earning, not to steal, abstain from stealing and injuring the feelings of others, and shun selfishness. One must practice these principles in his daily life.

iii. Universal Brotherhood: Most of the Bhakti reformers preached universal brotherhood. They protested against all distinctions of caste, colour, creed and sect. To them, all human beings were the creation ofone and the same God, hence they were all equal. They were primarily human beings, Hindus and Muslims afterwards. No person was high or low because of birth. Thus the Bhakti reformers emphasised the fundamental unity of mankind and the doctrine of human equality.

iv. Emotional Worship: The leaders of the Bhakti Movement laid stress on chanting the hymns or bhajans of the Lord in utmost devotion and develop love for Him and His creations. Abstention from all sham, insincerity, hypocrisy and cruelty, they said, would lead to God.

v. Guru Bhakti: Every person must attach himself to a spiritual mentor who would guide him to the high path and teach men the great lessons of love and the secrets of how to win His love.

vi. Self Surrender or Prapti: It means that a man in love with God should surrender himself completely to a teacher and be guided by him in everything.

vii. No Belief in Rituals: The Bhakti reformers vehemently attacked the formalities of religion, ostentatious prayers, penance, fasts and performance of sacrifices.

viii. Opposed to the Rigidity of the Caste System: The caste system was based on inequality and had no place in the doctrine of Divine Love. All are equal and no one should be regarded as high or low.

ix. Condemned Idol and Image Worship: God dwells in the heart ofman and not in an image or temple.

x. No Sanctity of any Particular Language: The Bhakti reformers did not believe in the sanctity of any particular language. God is not pleased with any particular language. He understands only one language, the language of the heart.

2. Analyse with illustrations why Bhakti and Sufi thinkers adopted a variety of languages in which to express their opinions.

Answer: Bhakti and Sufi thinkers adopted a variety of languages in which to express their opinions because they wanted to reach out to a wider audience and communicate their ideas in a language that was easily understood by the common people.

In the case of Sufi poetry, the Chishti Sufis adopted the local language in Delhi, while the followers of the Chisti Silsila conversed in Hindi, the language of the local people. Sufi saint Baba Farid composed verses in the Punjabi language, and some of his verses were placed in Adi Granth, the sacred book of the Sikhs. Malik Muhammad Jayasi composed Padmavat in a language that was easily understood by the people of his time. These compositions were usually recited in hospices during “Sama”.

Similarly, in the South, a different genre of Sufi poetry was composed in and around the town of Bijapur in Karnataka. These short poems were in Dakhni, a variant of Urdu, and were mostly sung by women while grinding grain and spinning. Other poems were in the form of turinama or lullabies and shadinama or wedding songs. It is through this medium that Islam gradually spread in the villages of the Deccan.

Likewise, the Bhakti movement also adopted the method of devotion to achieve salvation. The methods of expression of devotion ranged from the routine worship of deities within temples, and singing and chanting of devotional compositions. This was particularly true of the Vaishnava and Shaiva. Thus began the Bhakti movement. The most famous and popular among the reformers were Ramananda, Kabir, Sadna, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, Ravidas and Guru Nanak Dev. The Bhakti movement greatly influenced the social, religious, cultural and political life of the people.

The textual traditions of this period include contributions attributed to poet-saints, most of whom expressed themselves orally in regional languages used by ordinary people. These compositions were written in languages such as Hindi, Marathi, Gujarati, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, and Bengali, among others.

3. Describe the effects of Bhakti Movement on Indian society during the medieval period of the Indian history.

Answer: The Bhakti Movement had several effects on Indian society during the medieval period of Indian history. Firstly, it led to the decline of Buddhism which was already on the decline. Secondly, it gave great impetus to Hinduism and made it a popular religion. As a result, a large number of Buddhists left their religion and reverted to Hinduism. Thirdly, it considerably checked the spread of Islam by adopting many tenets of Islam, stressing the unity of God, condemning idol worship and caste system, and preaching universal brotherhood of mankind. Fourthly, it led to the birth of Sikhism, which established its separate identity and led to the birth of the Khalsa Panth.

Socially and culturally, the Bhakti Movement had several impacts. It improved social relations between the Hindus and the Muslims, as a result of which the people were no more inclined to embrace Islam and thus the growth of Islam was checked. It also condemned the caste system, untouchability, wasteful rituals and ceremonies to restore Hinduism to its ancient glory. Additionally, it lowered the importance and prestige of the Brahmanas in the Hindu society, who were dominating the society and exploiting the people. Furthermore, with the spread of the Bhakti movement, many places developed into centres of pilgrimage, which greatly venerated the saints and reformers.

4. Discuss the major beliefs and practices that characterised Sufism.

Answer: The major beliefs and practices that characterised Sufism were:

i. Worship of God: The union of the human soul with God (Wasal) through devotion was the essence of the Sufi faith. The Sufis believe that God does not reside in mosques or temples but in the minds of human beings. The Sufis craved for direct communion with God, i.e., union of the human soul with God through devotion. A Sufi regards God as his beloved (Mashooq) and himself as his lover (Ashaq). In passing through various stages of development, the Sufis felt extreme love and yearning for God. As a lover longs for the company of his beloved, so they aspire to go near Him. They thus laid great emphasis on love as a bond between God and individual soul.

ii. Faith in One God and His Omnipresence: According to the Sufis, there is only one God (Allah) who is omnipresent. He is the creator of the whole world. God and the world created by Him are fundamentally one. He resides in all visible and invisible things. There is no animate or inanimate thing in which God is not present.

iii. Renounced Worldly Pleasures: The Sufis (especially the Chishtis) in order to achieve union with God, voluntarily renounced worldly pleasures. They exhorted the people to shun wealth and life of luxury. They emphasised love for humanity and inner purity. The Sufis, however, did not ask their followers to retire to the jungles, to observe fasts and torture themselves to attain spiritual bliss. Sheikh Nizamuddin Auliya clearly stated that renunciation of the world does not imply that man should wear no clothes or go naked and sit idle. The renunciation of the world means that man should not indulge in worldly pleasures. He should wear clothes and take food but he should not remain busy amassing wealth. Atmost all the Chishti Shaikhs lived a life of poverty in their hermitages.

iv. Non-Violence and Pacificism: Sufism has firm faith in non-violence and pacificism. They hold that social evils can be eradicated only by love and peaceful methods, not by the use of violent means. Shaikh Nizamuddin Auliya said that if any body throws thorns in your path and you too throw thorns in his way, then there will be thorns everywhere. Violence breeds violence and makes the lives of the people wretched. Shaikh Hamiduddin Nagori forbade his followers to slaughter animals. Due to their faith in non-violence, many Sufi saints became vegetarians. The belief of the Sufis in non-violence and pacificism greatly contributed to the conversion of the Hindus to Islam.

v. Universal Brotherhood: The Sufi saints preached love of mankind and universal brotherhood. They were against all distinctions of caste, colour, creed and sect. The shrines or Khanqahs of the Sufis were always open to all, the rich or the poor, the nobles and the slaves, the Hindus as well as the Muslims. All were offered food prepared in one and the same kitchen. The devotees of the Sufi saints served well and treated kindly all those who visited the shrines. The Sufi Shaikhs and saints told their disciples that humility was the panacea for all the evils of the turbulent world.

vi. Importance of the Murshid: According to Sufism, an individual must have a religious guide (murshid) through whom he can communicate with God. A person who has no religious guide, has no religion (Jis ka koi pir nahin uska koi dharam nahin). The pir is the raft or ladder which enables a man to reach the goal of life. It is through the pir (murshid) alone that one can attain knowledge. Devotion to the murshid is the worship of God. Sufi Shaikhs were styled as murshids or pirs, and their devotees were murids. It was the foremost duty of the murid to obey the murshid. Usually, the murshid appointed his successor during his life time. The pir guided his followers in all matters, both mundane and spiritual. He also looked after the shrine or Khanqah. The Shaikhs, murshids or pirs, were highly venerated. After their death, their tombs became places of pilgrimage for the devotees.

vii. Principles of Morality: The Sufi saints also laid down some principles of morality for their followers so that they led high moral and pious life. They enjoined upon their followers to: (1) speak the truth, (2) practice purity, justice and goodness, (3) not to steal, (4) not to injure the feelings of others, and (5) to shun hypocrisy, selfishness and falsehood. Good deeds alone enable a man to obtain divine grace. Shaikh Muinuddin Chishti said that to help the poor and the down-trodden is the true service of the Almighty.

viii. Importance of Singing and Dancing: Singing and dancing, though forbidden by the orthodox Muslims, were regarded by the Suifs as methods of inducing a state of ecstasy which brought a Sufi close to his goal of union with God. The Sufis used Sama or music and dance in the worship of God. They started the practice of singing Qawalis or songs in their congregations.

Missing answers are only available to registered users. Please register or login if already registered. How to register? Click on Menu and select Register

7. Examine how and why rulers tried to establish connections with the traditions of the Nayanars and the Sufis.

Answer: In the case of the Nayanars, despite not establishing any alternative cult or becoming nuns, their very existence and compositions were a challenge to patriarchal tradition. The Vellala peasants also revered the Nayanars as well as the Alvars, and the rulers tried to win their support as well. The Chola kings usually attempted to claim divine support and asserted their own power and status by building magnificent temples which were adorned with stone and metal sculptures. They also introduced the singing of Tamil Shaiva hymns in the temples which were patronised by them. They collected the Nayanar hymns and got them organised into a Chola text. A Chola king Parantaka-I consecrated metal images of Appar, Sundarar, and Manikkavacakar, which were installed in the temple at Tiruvotriyur.

Similarly, in the case of the Sufis, the kings required their support to make their authority seem legitimate. When the Turks established the Delhi Sultanate, they opposed the demand of the Ulema to impose “Sharia” as state law because they realised that the majority of their subjects who were non-Muslims would oppose it. The Sultans sought the support of the Sufis who derived their authority directly from God, and did not depend on jurists to interpret the Sharia. It was also believed that the Auliya (Sufi Saints) directly ask God to improve the material and spiritual conditions of ordinary human beings. This explains why the Sultans wanted their tombs to be erected near the Sufi shrines and hospices.

However, there were also instances of conflict between the Sultans and the Sufis. To assert their authority, both wanted that certain rituals be performed, such as prostration and kissing of the feet. Sometimes, the Sufi saint was addressed with high sounding titles. The disciples of Nizamuddin Auliya addressed him as Sultan-ul-mashaikh (meaning sultan amongst Shaikhs).

VI. Long Answer Type Questions-II

1. Explain the features of Islamic religion that contributed to its spread through the subcontinent.

Answer: The Islamic religion’s spread throughout the subcontinent can be attributed to several factors:

i. Islam was an inclusive faith, reaching beyond the ruling elites to encompass people from various social backgrounds, such as peasants, artisans, and warriors. This inclusivity helped facilitate its spread among diverse social groups.

ii. There was a strong sense of unity within Islam. Those who adopted the faith agreed upon the ‘five pillars of faith’: belief in one God (Allah) and Prophet Muhammad as His messenger, Namaz (praying five times a day), Zakat (giving alms), Sawm (fasting during Ramadan), and Hajj (pilgrimage to Mecca). This shared set of rituals and beliefs allowed Islam to resonate with a broader population.

iii. Arab traders often incorporated local customs and traditions into their Islamic practises as they settled in different regions. For example, Arab traders who settled along the Malabar coast embraced the local language, Malayalam, and adopted local customs such as matriliny and matrilocal residence. This willingness to incorporate local customs made it easier for the local population to accept and adopt Islam.

While Islam maintained a number of universal practices, it was flexible enough to allow for the integration of local traditions and customs from various social contexts. This inclusiveness extended to diverse sectarian affiliations, such as Sunni and Shi’a. This adaptability and openness played a significant role in the spread of Islam throughout the subcontinent.

2. Why were kings interested in proclaiming their connections with Bhaktas?

Answer: Kings were interested in proclaiming their connections with Bhaktas because they were aware of the growing popularity of the Bhakti movement among the people. The Bhakti reformers had a large following among the masses, and the kings realized that by associating themselves with the Bhaktas, they could gain the support and loyalty of the people. The kings also recognized the potential of the Bhakti movement to promote social harmony and stability, and they wanted to be seen as patrons of this movement. By supporting the Bhaktas and their teachings, the kings hoped to create a favorable image of themselves as just and benevolent rulers who were concerned about the welfare of their subjects. Additionally, the Bhaktas themselves were often influential figures who could provide spiritual guidance to the kings and help them to maintain their authority over their subjects. The kings saw the Bhakti movement as a means of strengthening their rule and maintaining social order, and they were eager to associate themselves with it in order to gain the support and loyalty of the people.

Missing answers are only available to registered users. Please register or login if already registered. How to register? Click on Menu and select Register

4. Why do you think the traditions of Kabir, Baba Gurunanak Dev and Mirabai remain significant in the twenty-first century.

Answer: The teachings of Kabir, Baba Gurunanak Dev, and Mirabai have had a profound impact on Indian society and culture. These figures were important leaders of the Bhakti movement, which emphasised the importance of personal devotion and love for God over rigid religious doctrine and ritual. Their teachings continue to be relevant in the twenty-first century because they promote universal values such as love, compassion, and unity.

Kabir, for example, rejected the caste system and preached the unity of God. His teachings were popular among the lower classes of society and continue to be followed by Kabir Panthis today. Baba Gurunanak Dev similarly emphasized the importance of unity and rejected the religious divisions between Hindus and Muslims. His teachings were influential in the founding of Sikhism, which continues to be a major religion in India.

Mirabai, on the other hand, was a prominent devotee of the Krishna cult of Bhakti. Her devotional poetry continues to be admired for its beauty and emotional depth. Her lyrics in the Brij Bhasha language are considered to be some of the finest examples of Hindi devotional poetry.

Thus, the teachings of these figures continue to be significant in the twenty-first century because they promote values that are universal and timeless. They emphasize the importance of personal devotion and love for God, as well as the rejection of rigid religious doctrine and ritual. These values are relevant not only in India but around the world, and continue to inspire people of all backgrounds and beliefs.

Extra/additional questions and answers

1. What was the aim of the socio-religious movements during the Medieval period in India?  

Answer: The aim of the socio-religious movements during the Medieval period in India was to purge Hinduism of its evils and save it from the onslaught of Islam.

2. What method did the Bhakti movement adopt to achieve salvation?  

Answer: The Bhakti movement adopted the method of devotion (Bhakti) to achieve salvation.

3. Name some famous and popular reformers during the Bhakti movement.  

Answer: Some famous and popular reformers during the Bhakti movement were Ramananda, Kabir, Sadna, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, Ravidas, and Guru Nanak Dev.

4. How did Sufism influence people’s lives during the medieval period?  

Answer: Sufism influenced people’s lives by preaching the unity of God, brotherhood of mankind, and opposing priesthood and caste system, thus attracting the low caste Hindus to Islam.

Missing answers are only available to registered users. Please register or login if already registered. How to register? Click on Menu and select Register

36. How did Sufism become an all-India movement?  

Answer: Sufism became an all-India movement as it spread all over India, including the Deccan during the reign of Muhammad-bin-Tughlaq. The Sufis used similar methods to those of early Christian missionaries, employing the local language to propagate their ideas and establishing Khanqahs to maintain contact with people. Their work was not limited to Muslims; they sought to spread Islam among Hindus, particularly those of the lower castes. In some Muslim sections, they were more popular than the Mullas, leading to the Sultans granting rent-free lands to the Khanqahs and their Shaikhs.

Extra/additional MCQs

1. What did the socio-religious movements aim to achieve during the Medieval period in India?

A. Purify Hinduism B. Spread Christianity C. Promote Sufism D. Save Hinduism from Islam

Answer: D. Save Hinduism from Islam

2. What method was adopted by the Bhakti movement for salvation?

A. Gyan B. Karma C. Bhakti D. Yoga

Answer: C. Bhakti

3. Which movement in Islam paralleled the Bhakti movement during the medieval period?

A. Sunni B. Shia C. Sufism D. Wahhabism

Answer: C. Sufism

4. Who was the founder of Sikhism among the famous Bhakti reformers?

A. Ramananda B. Kabir C. Chaitanya Mahaprabhu D. Guru Nanak Dev

Answer: D. Guru Nanak Dev

5. What was the primary language of the religious literature produced by Vaishnavism?

A. Sanskrit B. Hindi C. Tamil D. Bengali

Answer: C. Tamil

Missing answers are only available to registered users. Please register or login if already registered. How to register? Click on Menu and select Register

79. The shrine of which Sufi saint is located in Ajmer? 

A. Shaikh Farid B. Shaikh Salim Chishti C. Shaikh Nizamuddin Auliya D. Shaikh Muinuddin Chishti 

Answer: D. Shaikh Muinuddin Chishti

Get notes of other boards, classes, and subjects

NBSESEBA/AHSEC
NCERTTBSE
WBBSE/WBCHSEICSE/ISC
BSEM/COHSEMMBOSE
Custom Notes ServiceQuestion papers

Share with others

1 thought on “Religious Histories- The Bhakti-Sufi Tradition: NBSE Class 12 notes”

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Don`t copy text!