Abhang is a type of divine poem which is sung in praise of Lord Vithoba, who is also known as Vitthala and Panduranga. Abhang means Flawless Divine poems continuously flows from the mouth of the Varkari Saints without any interruption. Abhang is very popular among the Vitthal devotees, and it was sung by the famous Varkari Saints such as Sant Namdev, Tukaram and Meerabai. These wonderful Abhangs are being happily sung by the devotees during their journey to the sacred city Pandharpur.
Still now Abhangs of Namdev, Ekanth and Tukaram is being singed by the Vitthal Devotees, with great joy and devotion in their mind. While singing the Abhangs, the devotees would dance and jump with happiness, hug others, and would have great spiritual pleasure in their mind, and apart from singing the Vitthal Songs, they also used to recite the Divine names of Sri Vitthal Mahaprabhu, which is popularly known as “NAMA JAPAM”. In order to glorify the Abhangs, big musicians like Bhimsen Joshi and Suresh Wadkar had rendered their divine service by adding melodious music to these songs.
This Abhang forms part and parcel in the lives of the Vitthal Devotees, and even the housewives in Pandharpur used to sing the Abhang songs while doing their household chores.
Vitthal worship was mainly introduced by Sant Jnanesvar during the 12th century AD. Through his wonderful works, he had garlanded Lord Panduranga, and sanctified him.People throughout Maharashtra, were become ardent devotees of Lord Vitthala, due to the significance of the Medieval Varkari Saints.
Ancient kings and queens of Maharashtra used to invite the Varkari Saints to their palaces, and they would give warm welcome to them, and used to listen to their wonderful Abhangs on Lord Vitthal. The great Marathi King, Sri Chatrapati Shivaji had highly honoured Sant Tukaram, and invited him to his palace, for his talent in writing marvellous Abhangs on Lord Vithoba. Famous Varkari Saints like Namdev, Tukaram and Chokamela were dedicated their entire soul on Lord Panduranga, and it is believed that even after the death of Chokamela, his bones were chanted the glory of Lord Vitthal, and this was happened due to his complete surrender on the lotus feet of Lord Vitthal.
Hence let us chant the glories of Lord Vitthala, sing his Abhangs, and travel towards the bhakti path, in order to get relieved from the continuous birth cycles.
“JAI JAI VITTHALA PANDURANGA VITTHALA”