Context: Recently, ancient saint Thiruvalluvar has been in the news because of a political issue in Tamil Nadu.
Prelims: Current events of national and international importance.
Mains: GS I-
- Indian culture will cover the salient aspects of Art Forms, Literature, and Architecture from ancient to modern times.
- Thiruvalluvar, also called Valluvar, was a Tamil poet-saint.
- The period when he lived is debated, as is his religious identity.
- He is believed to have lived between the 3rd-4th century or the 8th-9th century.
- He is thought to be linked to Jainism. However, Hindus have also claimed that Thiruvalluvar belonged to Hinduism.
- Dravidian groups also count him as a saint, as he dismissed the caste system.
- He had contributed the Tirukkural or ‘Kural’ to the Sangam literature.
- Tirukkural is comprised of 133 sections of 10 couplets each is divided into three books: Aram (virtue), Porul (government and society), and Kamam (love).
- The Tirukkural has been compared to the great books of the world’s major religions.
- The word ‘Sangam’ is the Tamil form of the Sanskrit word Sangha which means a group of persons or an association.
- The Tamil Sangam was an academy of poets who flourished in three different periods and in different places under the patronage of the Pandyan kings.
- The Sangam literature which was largely consolidated from the third Sangam throws information on conditions of life of people around the beginning of the Christian era.
- It deals with the secular matter relating to the public and social activities like government, war charity, trade, worship, agriculture, etc.
- Sangam literature consists of the earliest Tamil works (such as the Tolkappiyam), the ten poems (Pattupattu), the eight anthologies (Ettutogai) and the eighteen minor works (Padinenkilkanakku) and the three epics.