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Hymns For The Drowning

Hymns For The Drowning

Nammalvar
,
A K Ramanujan
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Overview

The poems in this book are some of the earliest about Visnu, one of the Hindu Trinity, also known as Tirumal, the Dark One. Tradition recognizes twelve alvars, saint-poets devoted to Visnu, who lived between the sixth and ninth century in the Tamil-speaking region of south India. These devotees of Visnu and their counterparts, the devotees of Siva (nayanmar), changed and revitalized Hinduism and their devotional hymns addressed to Visnu are among the earliest bhakti (devotional) texts in any Indian language. In this selection from Nammalvar’s works, the translations like the originals reflect the alternations of philosophic hymns and love poems, through recurring voices, roles and places. They also enact a progression”from wonder at the Lord’s works, to the experience of loving him and watching others love him, to moods of questioning and despair and finally to the experience of being devoured and possessed by him.

Imprint: Penguin Classics

Published: Apr/2005

ISBN: 9780144000104

Length : 200 Pages

Hymns For The Drowning

Nammalvar
,
A K Ramanujan
Overview

The poems in this book are some of the earliest about Visnu, one of the Hindu Trinity, also known as Tirumal, the Dark One. Tradition recognizes twelve alvars, saint-poets devoted to Visnu, who lived between the sixth and ninth century in the Tamil-speaking region of south India. These devotees of Visnu and their counterparts, the devotees of Siva (nayanmar), changed and revitalized Hinduism and their devotional hymns addressed to Visnu are among the earliest bhakti (devotional) texts in any Indian language. In this selection from Nammalvar’s works, the translations like the originals reflect the alternations of philosophic hymns and love poems, through recurring voices, roles and places. They also enact a progression”from wonder at the Lord’s works, to the experience of loving him and watching others love him, to moods of questioning and despair and finally to the experience of being devoured and possessed by him.

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Nammalvar

Nammalvar was a ninth-century mystic poet, a Vishnu devotee, who descended from a long line of Vaishnavas. He is considered the greatest of the alvar poet-saints of the Tamil Srivaisnava tradition.

A K Ramanujan

A.K. Ramanujan (1929-1993), one of India's finest poets, translators, folklorists, essayists and scholars of the twentieth century, is a stalwart in India's literary history. His translations of ancient Tamil and medieval Kannada poetry, as well as of UR Ananthamurthy's novelĀ Samskara, are considered as classics in Indian literature. A pioneering modernist poet, during his lifetime he produced four poetry collections in English, and he had also intended to publish the journals he had kept throughout the decades.

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