Ravidas (also Raidas, Rohidas and Ruhidas in eastern India) was a North Indian Guru mystic of the bhakti movement from Ramanandi Sampradaya and one of the direct disciples of Ramananda.
10 INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT RAVIDAS-THE SPIRITUAL LEADER:
1. Ravidas is often given the honorific Bhagat or Sant. He was a socio-religious reformer, a thinker, a theosophist, a humanist, a poet, a traveller, a pacifist and a spiritual figure.
2. Ravidas was born in the Kutbandhla Chamar caste. His devotional songs were included in the Sikh Scriptures, Guru Granth Sahib. Ravidas taught that one is distinguished not by one’s caste (jāti) but by one’s actions (karma) and that every person has the right to worship God and read holy texts.
3. Ravidas was born in a village named Seer Govardhanpur, near Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh, India. Ravidas’s father married Ravidas to Lona at early age and he had a son named Vijaydas. A region between Allahabad and Benares is named after him.
4.. The saint Meera considered Ravidas as her spiritual guru. Meera was a queen of Chittor and a daughter of the king of Rajasthan and she used to follow the teachings of Ravidas which teaches about that one’s fate of the future lies on his karmas (doings) rather than on his caste or creed’s.
5. There is a small chhatri (umbrella) in front of Meera’s temple in Chittorgarh district of Rajasthan. It has Ravidas’ engraved foot print also.
6. The Ravidassia religion compiled a new holy book, Amritbani Guru Ravidass Ji. Based entirely on the writings and teaching of Ravidas, it contains 240 hymns and all Ravidassias temples use it.
7. Ravidassia Bhawan, properly called a Bhawan or Mandir, or Gurudwara is the place of worship within the Ravidassia religion.It is considered respectful towards Guru Ravidass ji if one covers his head and takes off his or her shoes while entering the Ravidassia Bhawan. It is believed that everyone must follow it as a respect to Guru Ravidass ji.
8. Guru Ravidass Jayanti is the birthday of Guru Ravidass, celebrated on Magh Purnima, the full moon day in the month of Magh month.
9. Harr Nishaan (हरिਹਰਿ) or Nishaan Sahib is an official copyrighted symbol of Ravidassia religion.The Harr nishan can be found on top of the Ravidassias Bhawans or on the flag, every year the Harr Nishaan is changed on the auspicious day of Guru Ravidass Jayanti (Birthday).
10. One of Ravidas ji’s poem :
Upon seeing Poverty
Upon seeing poverty people laugh and jeer, and such was my plight.
But now I hold the powers of creation in the palm of my hand ― all because of Your mercy.
You know I am nothing, O Ram, Destroyer of fear.
All creatures seek Your refuge, O Prabhu, Fulfiller of desires.
Those who find Your refuge suffer no more afflictions.
Because of You, the high and the low ― all have gone across, escaping from the prison of this world.
Ravi Das says, The tale cannot be told, so why speak further?
You are what You are. What metaphor can I possibly use to describe You?