The Kashmiri saint and mystic poet Lal Ded, was married at the age of 12 into a family that was reported to have regularly mistreated her. After becoming a disciple of Sidh Srikanth, she renounced her material life and marriage to become a devotee of the god Shiva. As a mystic, she wandered naked, reciting her proverbs and her vakhs as a peaceful means of engagement with both Shaivism and Sufism.
Her poems are emotionally rich yet philosophically exact. The vakhs are splendidly mysterious yet crisply ordered. We have been at work in compilation of Lal Vakh for the last several years. It has been a much tougher and more time consuming job than the authors had bargained for. …
I am holding the framework in this book to the first order test that it be able to take account of a very wide range of complicated and carefully observed matter in a lucid and substantive manner. I am a teacher, a researcher, a scientist, an author and above all a student still having a desire to learn. My research led me to correct many tender beliefs and opinions held about her. Sometimes I have had to reinterpret the text and at places set right the text itself. I admit I may be trying in part to engage you in the process of learning and understanding a person by understanding her vakhs and how they seem to feel. Often to be frank the authors have been grappling with the cryptic and linear meaning of some vakhs any help is deeply appreciated.
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