[ courtesy neonblue.com ]

[ Painting by Balgajbar, Guru Siddha Peeth, Ganeshpuri,
(Darshan magazine, SYDA Foundation) ]


( Tukarama, Tukaram Maharaj, Tuka )

( 1608 – 1649 ) ( 1598 – 1650 )

All creatures have become divine to me,

I have transcended time and space,

And I shall never be born again . . .

I am smaller than the atom,

But I’ve expanded to the outer limits of space . .

What is left of Tuka is only

For the benefit of others

[ Gatha 993 (P. M. Lad)]

Tukaram was a bhakta by nature and farmer by trade and was
likely born at Dehu near Poona in the State of Maharashtra
where his ancestral home is still said to exist.

His family were successful grain sellers but the priestly
class considered him lowborn.

(Tukuram’s own farming fortune took a bad turn later
in life when a famine resulted in the death of his first wife and son by

Tukuram inherited devotion to God from his family. The
family deity was Vitthal, or Pandurang—
a form of Krishna worshipped in the famous temple in Pandharpur.
His devotion took greater focus after the disaster that befell his family
and many others.

Some say Tukaram received his spiritual initiation from
in a dream. Others say that it was during a period of intensive meditation
that Tukaram’s Guru, Babaji Raghavachaitanya, initiated him in 1619, whereupon
he renounced his inheritance gave himself completely to meditation and

Tukaram believed the body to be the temple of the living
lord and idol worship and rituals had no meaning for him. His all-embracing
love and forbearance and his special compassion for animals compare with
the saintliness of St. Francis of Assisi.

He had much need to be forbearing, for his envious comtemporaries
from the upper classes condemned and reviled him for his spontaneous witnessing
of the Love of God. Oblivious to the misunderstanding and spite of his
detractors, Tukaram bequeathed to his fellow men and posterity many wonderful
songs, chants and poems in praise of the Divine and the spiritual Way.
Nearly five thousand lyrics in the Marathi language have been consolidated
into a volume known as the Tukaramachi Gatha.

The woman saint Bahinabai exclaims
in one of her songs that “Jnanadeva laid the
foundation, and Tukaram became the pinnacle”.

[ page of original manuscript from Tukaram’s abhangas

(lit.immortal) ; devotional lyric or song-form in the
Marathi language ]



Excerpts from Tukaram

A visit to Tukaram’s village,
Dehu, Maharashtra, India

(excerpt from Swami Durgananda’s pilgrimage with Baba
in 1978)

The Great 17th Century Saint from Maharashtra

from neonblue.com, includes bio, abhangs, and movie ref.


Giri’s biography




The Poet-Saints of Maharashtra

special issue of Darshan magazine

#80 (November, 1993)

SYDA Foundation

Tukaram: Saint of Maharashtra

Chandravati Rajwade

Radha Soami Satsang Beas

Punjab, India. 1978


R. D. Ranade

Paperback / Published 1994

information and order from:

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and noble

Tukaram : The Poet Saint of Maharashtra

(Monumenta Indica Series, No. 8)

Justin E. Abbot

Hardcover / Published 1996 (1927)

information and order from:

| * | barnes
and noble

Village Songs of Western India :

Translations from Tukaram

John S. Hoyland (Translator)

Paperback / Published 1980

information and order from:

| * | barnes
and noble

Eating Hunger:

Selections from the Poems of Tukarama (1608-1649)

Paperback, 73pp.

ISBN: 1889298247

Rhwymbooks/April  1998

information and order from:

| * | barnes
and noble

Life of Tukaram

Abbott, Justin E.

Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass, 1980.

The Poems of Tukarama

Frazer, J. Nelson and Marathe, K.B., trans.

Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass, 1981.


K. V. Belsare

Maharashtra Information Centre

New Delhi

The Life and Teachings of Tukaram

Fraser, J. Nelson, and Edwards, J. F.

Psalms of Maratha Saints

Macnicol, Nicol

Calcutta: Association Press;

London: Oxford University Press.

Mysticism in Maharashtra

Ranade, R. D.

Bombay: Bharatiya Vidya Bhawan

The Saint-Poets of Maharashtra

Sardar, G. B.

Bombay: Orient Longman

Tukaram’s Teachings

Sharma, S. R.

Bombay: Bharatiya Vidya Bhawan.



Tukaram Gatha San

Jain, Narain Prasad



Santancha Prasad

Bhave, Acharya Vinoba

Pavnar: Paramadham Prakashan

Tukaram Maharaj Gatha

Jog, Vishnuboa

Bombay: Keshav Bhikaji Dhavle

Shri Tukaram Gatha

Joshi, P. N.

Bombay: Surekha Prakashan

Shri Tukaram Gatha

Khandarkar, Shankar Maharaj

Saunsthan Umarkhed (Maharashtra): Shri Sitaram Maharaj

Shri Tukaram Babachi Abhang-Gatha

Lad, P. M.

Government of Maharashtra, 1973

Shri Tukaram Charitra

Government of Maharashtra

Tukaram Charitra

Paithankar, Anant

Poona: Sant Wangmay Prakashan

Shri Tukaram Charitra

Pangarkar, L. R.

Sakshatkari Sant Tukaram

Pendse, S. D.

Poona: Continental Prakashan

Tukaram Wachanamrit

Ranade, R. D.

Poona: Venus Prakashan

Bhakticha Dangora

Tulpule, G. V.

Sakshatkar-Pathawar Tukaram

Tulpule, G. V.

Shri Tukaramachi Gatha

Wadapurkar, T. R

Pandharpur: Digambar Hari Telang, 1933.

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