Shri Guru Ravidass ji was born in the 14th century (1377 most of the scholars says ) at kanshi (Vanaras), Uttar Pradesh in India, in a humble family of Baba Santokh Dass ji being as father and Mata Kalsa Devi ji as mother.
Since early childhood, Guru Ravidassji was very much inclined to spirituality.Guruji used to go to attend holy discourses and showed great respect and devotion to holy men. This worried guruji's parents and they tried to divert his attention by engaging him in their family profession of shoe making and repairing.Guruji learned the profession, yet his love and devotion for God continued undiminished.With a view to make him more interested in worldly affairs, his father got him married to Mata Lona Devi at an early age.But even then it didn't change his attitude or his behaviour.Now thoroughly disgusted, his father separated him from the family and asked them to manage their own affairs without taking him to partake of the legitimate share of the family proprty. He was made to stay in the backyard of his house.
According to Ravidass Puran Guru Ravidass ji had a son named Vijaydas.
At the time of Guru Ravidass ji the social system was very cruel and the low caste people were not allowed to go the temples for prayer, to schools for study, to enter into villages in a daylight and were forced to live in huts far away rather than in houses in village. Since childhood Guruji had a spiritual mind, spiritual thinking and complete devotion to search the real God from the cruel world, who gave him only obstacles to achieve his goals of spreading the Gods message of being everybody equal in all respects, irrespective of caste, color or a belief in any form of God and to spread a message that "God created man and not man created God". Guru Ravidass Ji gave teachings on the lessons of universal brotherhood and tolerance.
Influenced by Guru Ravidass's teachings, the Maharaja and the Rani of Chittor became disciples of Guru Ravidass. The famous saint poetess, Mirabai, also became a disciple of Guru Ravidass. Guru Ravidass ji disappeared from this planet, leaving behind only his footprints in 1527.
Contribution to Sikhism
The 41 hymns of Shri Guru Ravidass ji included in the Guru Granth Sahib fall under:
Raga - Siri(1), Gauri (5), Asa(6), Gujari(1), Sorath(7), Dhanasari(3), Jaitsari(1), Suhi(3), Bilaval(2), Gaund(2), Ramkali(1), Maru(2), Kedara(1), Bhairau(1), Basant(1), and Malhar(3). one with slight variations is given in both Rag Sorath and rag Maru.