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Lila Charitra – Biography Of Chakradhara

Lila Charitra" offers a fascinating glimpse into the life and teachings of Chakradhara, the esteemed founder of the Mahanubhava sect. Originally penned in Marathi by Mahima Bhatta in 1278 CE, its significance transcends mere biography, serving as a cornerstone in Marathi literature and religious discourse. Despite facing destruction during Malik Kafur's invasion in 1308 CE, the work was resurrected by Upadhye Hiraisa, who had committed the original text to memory, ensuring its enduring legacy.

The narrative of "Lila Charitra" commences with a mystical tale wherein Changdev Raul breathes life into the inert form of Haripala, birthing Chakradhara. This captivating inception sets the stage for a journey through Chakradhara's life, interspersed with philosophical dialogues and the experiences of his disciples. The absence of traditional chapters lends a fluidity to the text, with each event unfolding in chronological order across its three parts: Ekanka (deals with the initial phase of Chakradhara’s wanderings after leaving his home), Purvadha (begins when he reaches Paithan and chooses Baisa as his disciple), and the final section chronicling Chakradhara's later discipleship with Nagadeva and end of the life of Chakradhara.

Through approximately 950 events, "Lila Charitra" not only documents Chakradhara's spiritual evolution but also offers a nuanced portrayal of the societal and cultural milieu of 13th-century CE Maharashtra. Its narrative tapestry weaves together episodes of wanderings, discipleship, and philosophical discourses, offering insights into the ethos of the time. As the first Marathi prose work and biography, "Lila Charitra" stands as a testament to Chakradhara's enduring influence and the literary prowess of its authors.