Spiritual Health in the Bhakti Tradition of Shri Harirayaji's Shikshapatra
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The concept and treatment of anxiety in Shri Harirayaji's <italic>Shikshapatra</italic>, an epistolary bhakti text from 17th century India, is examined here with translation of the original Sanskrit verses, their vernacular Brajbhasha commentary by Shri Gopeshvarji and a 20th century spoken commentary in Hindi by Shri Prathameshji. A review of secondary literature on the Vallabha Sampradaya situates the present study in the field of bhakti studies. Analysis of these primary and secondary sources encourages scholars to pay additional attention to the practical applications of bhakti texts, in addition to the more commonly treated transcendental elements of spiritual literature. Finally, with reference to clinical health research, a case is made for the potential contributions of bhakti literature to research on the mental and physical health impacts of spirituality and religion.