April 13, 2007

Baul Mystics of bengal

Book the beloved is about Bauls of Bengal. When I was in the second year of college i bought that book from the phursatgunj Osho Library. And from that day it became my Gita, Quran and Bible. A scripture on no scriptures. They wander the countryside, singing their religious songs. Their beliefs are a mixture of many influences and traditions, such as Hinduism, Sufism and Yoga. They break away from many common Indian beliefs, including the age-old caste system, and the separation of Hindu and Muslim communities.

I love Bauls because their rebellion is total. They are just simple human beings. They are like hippies on right path. Osho says that their rebellion is even greater than that of Zen Masters and Sufi mystics simply because they don't belong to anything. They don't belong to any society, religion, philosophy, dogma, creed, institution, organization, university, family, friends, strangers and even fellow Bauls. They totally belong to themselves only.

They don't posses anything but an ektara and a duggi, two musical instruments. Music is their life and their god. A Baul mystic lolan fakir sings: "What form does caste have? I have never seen it, brother, with these eyes of mine!"

They have influenced Bengali folk music for centuries. Their love of music is of the celestial form and they worship sky as a whole. They worship their body as if god is nothing but the body. They dance and sing and move from village to village, always traveling and enjoying whatever situation they come across.

Bauls are true individuals. It is difficult to find two identical Bauls or even two who have few similarities with each other. They are neither Hindus nor Mohammedans nor Christians. They don’t follow any faith and by doing so they follow all the faiths. Lalon fakir the most famous Baul Mystic was inclined towards the Sufi faith (Suphi in Bengali) but he never followed it like Rumi and other Mystics. For them Quran is a formal scripture but for Lalon fakir his body was the only scripture he could read with open heart.
They have inspired so many Indian masters, writers, poets, philosophers and saints. Few of them even have sung more than 1000 songs. They never compose their songs, but just sing it and create it as it comes out of their heart. They are illiterate and don’t write their songs beforehand. They are against all kind of documentation and believe that nothing is permanent in this world but change. So we don’t know much about who created these songs. They just sing and dance and enjoy life.

A baul song:
How does the unknown bird come within the cage and go away from it?
If I could catch hold of it, I could chain it with my mind.
The cage has eight chambers and nine doors are affixed on it.
It is carved here and there, above these there is the main room
- within which there is the hall of mirror.
Oh mind, you remain illusioned with the desire of the cage,
Your own cage is made of tender bamboo,
Who knows when will it collapse?
Lalon says, 'Where does that bird flee by opening the cage?'
You can download these songs from:
Few of them for you to play online:

Baul Song 1:

Baul Song 2:


  1. Wow! Bauls are the thing to be. How do I join? (Ok I am kidding) they sound a little like the Rastafarians from Jamaica, who I also admire.

    Thank you so much for this inspiration. I love the songs too.

  2. i also admire and enjoy this music very much.

  3. thanks 20 box. i can write something about baul since i am a bengali and have an extensive collection of purnodas. but the problem with me is that i cannot write anything about others. it's all about me. not talented like you.

  4. problem is same with me also, since i don't know who i am, i can not write authentically about myself.

  5. thx dear, i like your post
    lalitkishore das baul

  6. Baul leaving comments on a blog ?? Strange...

  7. how does one become a baul or finds himself to be one… and are they only males or there are women too…? are they family people…?ok ok i know :)