Who was Lalleshwari?

- October 28, 2020

Lalleshwari, popularly known as Lal Ded, was a poetess who lived in 14th century Kashmir. She belonged to the Kashmiri Shaivite sect and was also considered a Sufi saint.

Illustration: Upasana Govindarajan

Married when she was 12, she was ill-treated in her husband’s house and walked away at the age of 24 to become a devotee of Shiva.
Her mystic verses, called Vakh, have influenced generations to shun the path of rituals and tradition and to embrace the Divine as a path to self-realization. Vakh is traced to be one of the earliest composition in the Kashmiri language, making it a crucial building block of Kashmiri literature. Here is one of her popular verses.


To receive more such stories in your Inbox & WhatsApp, Please share your Email and Mobile number.


Under the ocean’s bottom lies
the destructive fire, vadvaagni;
And in the breast of man doth rage
the fire of wrath.
When the fire breaks out, its flames
of angry, abusive words,
sear and scorch and burn.
But if one ponders unruffled and calm,
and weighs the words, though angry they be,
They have no substance, no, nor weight.

– Lalleshwari

To receive more such stories in your Inbox & WhatsApp, Please share your Email and Mobile number.

Comic of The Month

M.S. Subbulakshmi

M.S. Subbulakshmi was born to sing. Her unchallenged position in the realm of Carnatic music was the result of great talent combined with hours of practice and utter devotion. Subbulakshmi began her formal training in music when she was five. Her first stage performance was at the age of eight. It is said that the young Subbulakshmi would practice her ragas even between household chores, keeping time to the most intricate and complex beats of Carnatic music. M.S. Subbulakshmi used music as an instrument to motivate people, especially during the freedom movement. Her music inspired all those who heard it and she was celebrated and acclaimed wherever she went. In this graphic biography, Amar Chitra Katha pays tribute to the legend and her invaluable contribution to the world of music.

20 Minute Read