(Last Updated on : 04/10/2014)
Dehatattva song is a very popular and important type of song which is sung by different sects. Singers are commonly from Vaishnava Sampradayas
, known as Bairagi-Vaisnavis, Bauls
and Muslim Faqirs all over in the West Bengal
. In the Assam
state of India this type of song is familiar as dehbicarar git. It is a product of mixed popular faith synthesized in one section.
Significance and Belief of Dehatattva Song
Dehatattva developed some relationship with Sahajiya cult. The past singers of Dehatattva started from observances of yoga
system. Later, the method was abandoned, and they followed Tantrik and Sahajiya cult, ultimately boiling down to a more simple faith. They are indifferent to belief in god
, and their ideas relate to the soul inside the body.
The term Dehatattva literally signifies the method of realizing the meaning of body. The body is often described allegorically or in a symbolic way. Among Dehatattva believers human relations of man are valued much; even sex relations are given importance for realization of the ultimate reality.
Popularity of Dehatattva Song
The popularity of Dehatattva all over the country was due to the simplicity of its faith which eschewed all kinds of ritualism and religious fanaticism. Believers, Hindus and Muslims, stayed away from ideological complications. Importance was attached more with spiritual realization than with ideologies.
It may be stated that the use of symbolic expression or allegory in devotional compositions has been a traditional practice in West Bengal. Caryapadas are often cited as records of the old age in this regard. Composers take interest in the use of illustrations from rural life. Human body is compared with tree, boat, birth of child, fish, river
, structure of a hut and the self or the mind as boatman, a milk
man, etc. Relation of the body and soul is characterized differently in Bauls. One of the reasons for general popularity of Dehatattva lies in its approach which is free from biases of thoughts and intricacies that are traced in Baul. Some of the Dehatattva composers were followers of the Tantra in Hinduism
. They composed songs with the mixture of Tantrik principles in the theme.