Dvaita Vedanta

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Dvaita Vedanta ( /ˈdvtəvɪˈdɑːntə/ ; Sanskrit : द्वैत वेदान्त) is a sub-school in the Vedanta tradition of Hindu philosophy. Alternatively known as Bhedavāda, Tattvavāda and Bimbapratibimbavāda, Dvaita Vedanta sub-school was founded by the 13th-century scholar Madhvacharya. [1] The Dvaita Vedanta school believes that God (Vishnu, supreme soul) and the individual souls (jīvātman) exist as independent realities, and these are distinct. The Dvaita school contrasts with the other two major sub-schools of Vedanta, the Advaita Vedanta of Adi Shankara which posits nondualism – that ultimate reality (Brahman) and human soul are identical and all reality is interconnected oneness, and Vishishtadvaita of Ramanuja which posits qualified nondualism – that ultimate reality (Brahman) and human soul are different but with the potential to be identical. [2] [3]

Vedanta or Uttara Mīmāṃsā is one of the six (āstika) schools of Hindu philosophy. Vedanta literally means "end of the Vedas", reflecting ideas that emerged from the speculations and philosophies contained in the Upanishads. It does not stand for one comprehensive or unifying doctrine. Rather it is an umbrella term for many sub-traditions, ranging from dualism to non-dualism, all of which developed on the basis of a common textual connection called the Prasthanatrayi. The Prasthanatrayi is a collective term for the Principal Upanishads, the Brahma Sutras and the Bhagavad Gita.

Hindu philosophy various systems of thought in Hinduism

Hindu philosophy refers to a group of darśanas that emerged in ancient India. These include six systems (ṣaḍdarśana) – Sankhya, Yoga, Nyaya, Vaisheshika, Mimamsa and Vedanta. These are also called the Astika (orthodox) philosophical traditions and are those that accept the Vedas as an authoritative, important source of knowledge. Ancient and medieval India was also the source of philosophies that share philosophical concepts but rejected the Vedas, and these have been called nāstika Indian philosophies. Nāstika Indian philosophies include Buddhism, Jainism, Cārvāka, Ājīvika, and others.

Madhvacharya Hindu philosopher who founded Dvaita Vedanta school

Madhvacharya, sometimes anglicised as Madhva Acharya, and also known as Pūrna Prajña and Ānanda Tīrtha, was a Hindu philosopher and the chief proponent of the Dvaita (dualism) school of Vedanta. Madhva called his philosophy Tatvavāda meaning "arguments from a realist viewpoint".

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Dvaita (द्वैत) is a Sanskrit word that means "duality, dualism". [4] The term refers to any premise, particularly in theology on the temporal and the divine, where two principles (truths) or realities are posited to exist simultaneously and independently. [4] [1]

Philosophy

Dvaita Vedanta is a dualistic interpretation of the Vedas, espouses dualism by theorizing the existence of two separate realities. The first and the only independent reality (svatantra-tattva), states the Dvaita school, is that of Vishnu as Brahman. [5] Vishnu is the supreme Self, in a manner similar to monotheistic God in other major religions. [6] The second reality is that of dependent (asvatantra-tattva) but equally real universe that exists with its own separate essence. Everything that is composed of the second reality, such as individual soul, matter, and the like exist with their own separate reality. The distinguishing factor of this philosophy, as opposed to monistic Advaita Vedanta, is that God takes on a personal role and is seen as a real eternal entity that governs and controls the universe. [7]

Vedas Ancient scriptures of Hinduism

The Vedas are a large body of religious texts originating in ancient India. Composed in Vedic Sanskrit, the texts constitute the oldest layer of Sanskrit literature and the oldest scriptures of Hinduism. Hindus consider the Vedas to be apauruṣeya, which means "not of a man, superhuman" and "impersonal, authorless".

Vishnu Hindu god, basis of Vaishnavism

Vishnu is one of the principal deities of Hinduism, and the Supreme Being or absolute truth in its Vaishnavism tradition. Vishnu is the "preserver" in the Hindu triad (Trimurti) that includes Brahma and Shiva.

The self is an individual person as the object of his or her own reflective consciousness. This reference is necessarily subjective, thus self is a reference by a subject to the same subject. The sense of having a self—or self-hood—should, however, not be confused with subjectivity itself. Ostensibly, there is a directness outward from the subject that refers inward, back to its 'self'. Examples of psychiatric conditions where such 'sameness' is broken include depersonalization, which sometimes occur in schizophrenia: the self appears different to the subject.

Like Ramanuja, Madhvacharya also embraced Vaishnavism. Madhvacharya posits God as being personal and saguna, that is endowed with attributes and qualities. To Madhvacharya, the metaphysical concept of Brahman in the Vedas was Vishnu. He stated "brahmaśabdaśca Viṣṇaveva", that Brahman can only refer to Vishnu. To him, Vishnu was not just any other deva, but rather the one and only Supreme Being. [8] [9]

Ramanuja Hindu philosopher, exegete of Vishishtadvaita Vedanta school

Ramanuja was an Indian theologian, philosopher, and one of the most important exponents of the Sri Vaishnavism tradition within Hinduism. His philosophical foundations for devotionalism were influential to the Bhakti movement.

Vaishnavism Hindu tradition inspired by god Vishnu

Vaishnavism is one of the major Hindu denominations along with Shaivism, Shaktism, and Smartism. It is also called Vishnuism, its followers are called Vaishnavas or Vaishnavites, and it considers Vishnu as the Supreme Lord.

A personal god is a deity who can be related to as a person instead of as an impersonal force, such as the Absolute, "the All", or the "Ground of Being".

Dvaita Vedanta acknowledges two principles; however, it holds one of them (the sentient) as being eternally dependent on the other. The individual souls are depicted as reflections, images or shadows of the divine, but never in any way identical with the divine. Moksha (liberation) therefore is described as the realization that all finite reality is essentially dependent on the Supreme. [5]

Moksha, also called vimoksha, vimukti and mukti, is a term in Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism which refers to various forms of emancipation, enlightenment, liberation, and release. In its soteriological and eschatological senses, it refers to freedom from saṃsāra, the cycle of death and rebirth. In its epistemological and psychological senses, moksha refers to freedom from ignorance: self-realization, self-actualization and self-knowledge.

Five fundamental, eternal and real differences are described in Dvaita school: [5] [9] [10]

  1. Between the individual souls (or jīvātman) and God (Brahmātmeśvara or Vishnu).
  2. Between matter (inanimate, insentient) and God.
  3. Between individual souls (jīvātman)
  4. Between matter and jīvatman.
  5. Between various types of matter.

These five differences are said to explain the nature of the universe. The world is called prapañca (pañca "five") by the Dvaita school for this reason.

Madhva differed significantly from traditional Hindu beliefs owing to his concept of eternal damnation. For example, he divides souls into three classes. One class of souls, mukti-yogyas , qualifies for liberation, another, the nitya-samsarins , subject to eternal rebirth or eternal transmigration and a third class, tamo-yogyas , who are condemned to non-eternal hell (andhatamasa). [11] No other Hindu philosopher or school of Hinduism holds such beliefs. In contrast, most Hindus believe in universal salvation, that all souls will eventually obtain moksha, even if after millions of rebirths.

Influence

See also

Related Research Articles

The Upanishads, a part of the Vedas, are ancient Sanskrit texts that contain some of the central philosophical concepts and ideas of Hinduism, some of which are shared with religious traditions like Buddhism and Jainism. Among the most important literature in the history of Indian religions and culture, the Upanishads played an important role in the development of spiritual ideas in ancient India, marking a transition from Vedic ritualism to new ideas and institutions. Of all Vedic literature, the Upanishads alone are widely known, and their central ideas are at the spiritual core of Hindus.

Ātman is a Sanskrit word that means inner self or soul. In Hindu philosophy, especially in the Vedanta school of Hinduism, Ātman is the first principle, the true self of an individual beyond identification with phenomena, the essence of an individual. In order to attain liberation (moksha), a human being must acquire self-knowledge, which is to realize that one's true self (Ātman) is identical with the transcendent self Brahman.

Advaita Vedanta One of the classic paths to spiritual realization in Hinduism

Advaita Vedanta, originally known as Puruṣavādha, is a school of Hindu philosophy, and believed to be one of the classic paths to spiritual realization in Hindu tradition. The term Advaita refers to its idea that the true self, Atman, is the same as the highest metaphysical Reality (Brahmam). The followers of this school are known as Advaita Vedantins, or just Advaitins or Mayavaadis, and they seek spiritual liberation through acquiring vidyā, meaning knowledge, of one's true identity as Atman, and the identity of Atman and Brahman.

Jnana yoga One of four spiritual paths in Hinduism

Jñāna yoga, also known as Jnanamarga, is one of the several spiritual paths in Hinduism that emphasizes the "path of knowledge", also known as the "path of self-realization". It is one of the three classical paths (margas) for moksha. The other two are karma yoga and bhakti yoga. Later, new movements within Hinduism added raja yoga as a fourth spiritual path, but it is not universally accepted as distinct from the other three.

Saguna Brahman came from the Sanskrit saguṇa (सगुण) "with qualities, gunas" and Brahman (ब्रह्मन्) "the Absolute", close to the concept of immanence, the manifested divine presence.

Ishvara is a concept in Hinduism, with a wide range of meanings that depend on the era and the school of Hinduism. In ancient texts of Indian philosophy, depending on the context, Ishvara can mean supreme soul, ruler, lord, king, queen or husband. In medieval era Hindu texts, depending on the school of Hinduism, Ishvara means God, Supreme Being, personal god, or special Self.

The standard problem of evil found in monotheistic religions does not apply to almost all traditions of Hinduism because it does not posit an omniscient, omnipotent, omnibenevolent creator.

Hinduism is a religion which incorporates diverse views on the concept of God. Different traditions of Hinduism have different theistic views, and these views have been described by scholars as polytheism, monotheism, henotheism, panentheism, pantheism, monism, agnostic, humanism, atheism or non-theism.

Jayatirtha Dvaita seer

Sri Jayatirtha or Jayateertharu, also known asTeekacharya was a Hindu philosopher, dialectician, polemicist and the sixth pontiff of Madhvacharya Peetha. He is considered to be one of the most important seers in the history of Dvaita school of thought on account of his sound elucidations of the works of Madhvacharya. He is credited with structuring the philosophical aspects of Dvaita and through his polemical works, elevating it to an equal footing with the contemporary schools of thought. Along with Madhva and Vyasatirtha, he is venerated as one of the three great spiritual sages, or munitraya of Dvaita.

The concept of God in Hinduism varies in its diverse traditions. Hinduism spans a wide range of beliefs such as henotheism, monotheism, polytheism, panentheism, pantheism, pandeism, monism, atheism and nontheism.

Padmanabha Tirtha Hindu guru

Padmanabha Tirtha was a Dvaita scholar and the disciple of Madhvacharya. Ascending the pontifical seat after Madhva, he served as the primary commentator of his works and in doing so, significantly elucidated Madhva's terse and laconic style of writing. His pioneering efforts in expanding upon the Dvaita texts to uncover the underlying metaphysical intricacies was taken forward by the 14th Century philosopher, Jayatirtha. Padmanabha is also credited with disseminating the philosophy of Dvaita outside the Tulunadu.

Sad Vaishnavism

Sad Vaishnavism is a denomination within the Vaishnavism tradition of Hinduism, founded by the thirteenth century philosopher Madhvacharya. It is a movement in Hinduism that developed during its classical period around the beginning of the Common Era. Philosophically, Madhva tradition is aligned with Dvaita Vedanta, and regards Madhvacharya as its founder or reformer.

Para Brahman (Sanskrit:परब्रह्मन्) is the "Highest Brahman" that which is beyond all descriptions and conceptualisations. It is described in Hindu texts as the formless spirit (soul) that eternally pervades everything, everywhere in the universe and whatever is beyond.

Brahman metaphysical concept, unchanging Ultimate Reality in Hinduism

In Hinduism, Brahman connotes the highest Universal Principle, the Ultimate Reality in the universe. In major schools of Hindu philosophy, it is the material, efficient, formal and final cause of all that exists. It is the pervasive, genderless, infinite, eternal truth and bliss which does not change, yet is the cause of all changes. Brahman as a metaphysical concept is the single binding unity behind diversity in all that exists in the universe.

Embranthiri

The Embrandiri, also transliterated as Embranthiri, are a Malayali Brahmin subcaste of Tulu origin.

Dualism in Indian philosophy refers to the belief held by certain schools of Indian philosophy that reality is fundamentally composed of two parts. This mainly takes the form of either mind-matter dualism in Buddhist philosophy or consciousness-matter dualism in the Samkhya and Yoga schools of Hindu philosophy. These can be contrasted with mind-body dualism in Western philosophy of mind, but also have similarities with it.

References

  1. 1 2 Jeaneane D. Fowler (2002). Perspectives of Reality: An Introduction to the Philosophy of Hinduism. Sussex Academic Press. pp. 340–343. ISBN   978-1-898723-94-3.
  2. Jeaneane D. Fowler (2002). Perspectives of Reality: An Introduction to the Philosophy of Hinduism. Sussex Academic Press. pp. 238–243, 288–293, 340–343. ISBN   978-1-898723-94-3.
  3. James Lochtefeld (2002), The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Volume 1 & 2, Rosen Publishing, ISBN   0-8239-2287-1, pages 12-13, 213-214, 758-759
  4. 1 2 Sir Monier Monier-Williams, Dvaita, A Sanskrit-English Dictionary: Etymologically and Philologically Arranged with Special Reference to Cognate Indo-European Languages, Oxford University Press (Reprinted: Motilal Banarsidass), ISBN   978-8120831056, page 507
  5. 1 2 3 Fowler 2002, pp. 340-344.
  6. Michael Myers (2000), Brahman: A Comparative Theology, Routledge, ISBN   978-0700712571, pages 124-127
  7. Etter 2006, pp. 59-60.
  8. Bryant, Edwin (2007). Krishna : A Sourcebook (Chapter 15 by Deepak Sarma). Oxford University Press. p. 358. ISBN   978-0195148923.
  9. 1 2 Stoker, Valerie (2011). "Madhva (1238-1317)". Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Retrieved 29 February 2016.
  10. James Lochtefeld (2002), Madhva, The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Vol. 1: A–M, Rosen Publishing. ISBN   978-0823931798, page 396
  11. Tapasyananda, Swami. Bhakti Schools of Vedanta pg. 177.
  12. 1 2 Sabapathy Kulandran and Hendrik Kraemer (2004), Grace in Christianity and Hinduism, James Clarke, ISBN   978-0227172360, pages 177-179
  13. Sharma 1962, pp. 22-23.
  14. Sharma 2000, pp. xxxii-xxxiii, 514-516.
  15. Jones & Ryan 2006, p. 266.
  16. Sarma 2000, pp. 19-21.

Bibliography