Rāmprasād Sen

(c. 1718—1775)

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One of the originators of the Bengali tradition of Śākta poetry, known as śākta padāvalī, and its best-known exponent. Nothing is known of his life beyond later hagiography (the first biography appeared in 1853), although he seems to have lived just north of Kolkata (Calcutta). Over 300 poems addressed to Kālī as the terrifying, bloodthirsty, and unpredictable mother goddess, are attributed to him. Recent analysis suggests that his work is essentially Tantric and monistic in character, although it also contains seeds of the bhakti religion which provided its appeal for many 19th- and early 20th-century commentators.

Subjects: Hinduism.

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