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Weaving & Poetry with Sant Kabir ~ National Handloom Day

Posted by Padma Paaduka on

Whose immortal songs resonate within us as a tribute to weaving? Who beckoned the Lord as the ultimate weaver and life as symbolizing the yarns and the weaves? Sant Kabir. The immortal poet, weaver, devotee and mystic who was a ‘julaha’ or weaver by profession. His much-much-much- loved poem on weaving ‘Jheeni Jheeni Beeni Chadariya’ is perfect in its mysticism and symbolism.
We came across an intuitive post by Blogger Suja who gives a poignant analysis and translation of Kabir’s famous weaving poem. She says:
“The poet (kabir) compares life to a woven wrap. ‘Subtly, delicately, He wove this wrap! What is its warp? What is its weft? With what fibre was it woven?’ he wonders. Describing this body which is just a wrap the soul takes on, to be discarded at the end of life, he says ‘Gods, men and sages have worn this wrap and sullied it by their wearing. This servant Kabir is wearing this with care so that he can leave it unsullied, just as it was.’”
What is heartening is that the Indian Government has been bestowing an award titled “Sant Kabir Award” on weavers since 2009. It is conferred upon “outstanding weavers who have made valuable contribution in keeping alive the handloom heritage. It was established for dedication in building up linkages between the past, present and future through dissemination of knowledge on traditional skills and designs by Ministry of Textiles, Government of India.” (Source Wikipedia)
Yet another fabulous step ahead for handlooms comes in the form of our National Handloom Day. Today, August 7th 2015, we wake up to celebrate our first National Handloom Day. Our Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi, will launch this day at the prestigious Centenary hall of Madras University, Chennai. He will also launch the India Handloom brand today.
This date is also a tribute to the Swadeshi Movement which began 90 years ago on this same day in 2015. As the name implies, the movement was to encourage us to revive products made by us in our own country.
Celebrate handlooms. Celebrate the national spirit.


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