Early History of the Vaiṣṇava Faith and Movement in Assam: Śaṅkaradeva and His Times

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Motilal Banarsidass Publishe, 1980 - Assam (India) - 400 pages

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The vast literature coming in the wake of the Sankaradeva movement would have remained sealed to all if he ( Professor Neog) had not come forward to interpret and edit some of these .Although variety and versatility have been the distinguishing mark of his talents, Professor Neog is, at the same time, regarded as the only authority on Sankaradeva’s religion, philosophy ,literature and music He is cosmopolitan in his outlook and approach ; but his centre of interest and admiration is the Vaisnava culture of the State with its unsurpassed vitality and continuity…..Professor Maheswar Neog’s contribution and interpretation to the Vedantic philosophy of Sankaradeva is very significant. In his treatment, the obscurities that may appear sometimes in the writing of the great saint, have been appreciably removed .Dr Neog like some other scholars without going deep into the subject ,did not agree that the Advaita system of Sankaracharya was fully followed Sankaradeva. According to him , Vaisnavism of Sankaradeva with its emphasis on humanism and the individual was revolutionary and democratic.Sankaradeva’s philosophy, Professor Neog argues is essentially, a synthesis of the highly intellectual Advaita and bhakti with its emotional surcharge which again, is quite different from any other Vaisnava school of thought 

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After what Professor Suniti Kumar Chatterji, Professor Vasudev Charan Agarwal and Professor Sushil Professor Maheswar Neog was one of the leading humanists and scholar of contemporary India .He was an outstanding Indian scholar of 19th Century unique in his command of just every discipline of the humanities and social sciences. Professor Neog combined in himself the rare insight of a creative writer, the critical acumen of a philologist and a historian of literature and a meticulous writer on any topic on Assam and Assamese .For several decades he was one of the foremost figure in the nation’s academic and intellectual life. Professor Maheswar Neog was a versatile scholar and visionary thinker with encyclopedic range. His interest was multifarious. Arena of his studies covers all disciplines of Indian studies, language and literary history, lexicography and orthography, epigraphy and ethnography , historiography and hagiography ,fine arts and paintings ,music, dance ,drama ,religion and folklore apart from critical editions of a number of important ancient and medieval texts in Sanskrit and Assamese. Professor Hiren Gohain had rightly observed in his tribute , “ Inevitably Dr Neog had also to be an organiser.He edited journals,organised learned societies and circles, guided research,helped manfully in the mass-movement for the establishment of the first university in Assam,sterred the Asam Sahitya Sabha, joined the struggle against all attempts to destroy the integrity of Assam,while taking classes and doing a lot of drudgery for the infant university, and so on.And all the while he could count on very few people who could understand the importance of what he was doing. In fact he was doing things “ normal’ people has no time for !......He is the first Assamese scholar to have made plea for modern textual scholarship (in his Address as the President of the Asam Sahitya Sabha).I think the pursuit of that discipline spilled over later into a major work in epigraphy Prachya- sasanavali.” “ A scholar of such versatile genius and at the same time,profound erudition is rarte” is what Professor Suniti Kumar Chatterjee had said in appreciation of the range,depth and intensity of his scholarship. Dr Kapila Vatsyayan while delivering the First Professor Maheswar Neog Commemoration Lecture had observed ,” A great son of an indispensible part of India –the chronological details of his life now point out how the person was looking at his own soil, his roots and the world around him.I believe him to be the last generation of the renaissance in this age of specialization.” De said on this monumental work besides many scholars from U.K. what more we can say  


the Acdryasarhhati Govindadasas Santasampradayakatha or Etaka
iii Muhammedan chronicles etc 3337
Chapter II
Bhuyas and their role in history not an ethnic group the Bara Bhuyas
Chutiyas the Kacharls etc 5863
Chapter III
vism iv crypticBuddhism v other minor cultsNathism Dharma cult
logical character of the descriptionpurusa and par amapurusapsy
releaseconclusion 241245
Introduction Probable influences on the growth of the Assamese
Sutradharas role 257262
chomasks mukhacostumescosmetics and paintshair 269274
Chapter IX
stylesojapali and its classical featurestribal dancesthe Sankaradeva
Saka1539 A D the miniatures of which are reproduced

Chapter IV
Madhavadevahostility against and royal persecution of the Vaisnavas 109112
chief apostle of Sankaradevaearly life in adversitymeeting
deva iii Harideva iv Narayana Dasa or Thakura Ata 128133
xiii Harihara Ata xiv Srlrama Ata xv and xvi Hari and Krsna
Chapter V
2 the Bhaktipradipa 3 the Kirtanaghosdearly middle and final
Chapter VI
Lordclassification of bhakti or religious devotionthe bhakta
and SridharasvamlCausalityGod and the worldgeneral Advaitic
manikut bharalgharwhy no permanent structures ?the origin
for ascetics and bdhir hati outside set for married clerics the number
wells 330331
silar banuwa xii Bhurall xiii Likhak xiv Khanikar xv Haflmata
fourteen or twelve subdivisionsexclusion of idol worship from
vastu and the four iaranastheir originthe place for the initiation
Chapter XII
naimittlka karmafuneral ritesmarriage ritesthe observance of
INDEX 389400

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