Garib Das

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Sant Garib Das (1717 – 1778) was a Yogi and called Acharaya (one who is teacher to saints), spiritual reformer and founder of the Garibdasi panth who follow his preachings.


  • While still in Calcutta I made my first contact with another mighty scripture, the Granth Saheb of Sri Garibdas. This Jat saint of Haryana has been the patron saint of my family ever since an ancestor of ours, who was the saint's contemporary, became his votary in the first half of the 18th century. We revere him as the Satguru (true teacher) who was an avatara of the Highest Being. He was totally illiterate but composed and sang some 18000 verses of very sublime poetry which scales the highest spiritual heights. The story goes that my ancestor would not have his first morning sip of water unless he had paid homage to the saint who lived at a distance of 4 miles from our village.
    • Goel, S. R. (2007). How I became a Hindu.
  • My father was able to acquire a copy of the first printed edition of the Granth Saheb of Sri Garibdas soon after it was published from Baroda. He would frequently read it out to my mother and myself with his own running commentary on the lives of saints and bhaktas as they were mentioned in the sakhis and the ragas. I also sat sometimes turning the pages of this work. I hardly had the mental equipment to understand the mystic messages. But the stories of some great saints like Kabir, Nanak, Ravidas, Dadu, Namdev, Chippa, Pipa and Dhanna were very strongly impressed on my mind, as also the stories of renowned Muslim sufis like Rabiya, Mansur, Adham Sultan, Junaid, Bayazid and Shams Tabriz. These stories were to flower into an abiding satsanga (holy company) in years to come.
    • Goel, S. R. (2007). How I became a Hindu.
  • Poets like Jayasi, Rahim, and Raskhan are rare phenomena. So are saints like Kabir, Nanak and Gharib Das. They attempted a synthesis of the two cultural streams in the field of literature in their own way. But their endeavours were severly limited and short-lived. They failed to be popular amongst and influence the Muslims.
    • Harsh Narain, Myths of Composite Culture and Equality of Religions, 1990, p.27

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