|NITAAI-Veda.nyf > All Scriptures By Acharyas > Biographical Works > The Life and Legacy of Madhvacharya Bhagavatapada > CHAPTER III|
THE APPEARANCE OF VASUDEVA MADHVACARYA)
In the area of the South West coast of India, the Brahmins there are mostly Koonkans, Sarasvats and Shivallis. As explained perviously, the Shivalli or Shivabelli sect of Brahmins are mostly found around the Udupi area, Shivabelli being an old name for Udupi in connection with Shri Candramuleswaraji. Previous to the advent of Madhva some Shivalli Brahmins worshipped Lord Siva, but most had an affiliation with the Bhagavat sampradaya and had a leaning towards Vishnu. Most would worship that form of a lingam, but would see Vishnu as his origin (as already mentioned in connection with Sankara-Narayana, and especially Anantesvara, Who is worshipped as Parasurama though in the form of a lingam).
One such Brahmin of the name Madhyageha Bhatta and his wife to be (Vedavati) used to worship daily at the Anantasana Temple in Udupi, performing many rigid austerities in their daily service for Lord Parasurama (Anantesvara). For no less than twelve years they performed their service purely, travelling daily from nearby Pajakaksetra to Udupi to serve the Lord. Most would worship that form of a lingam seeing Vishnu as His origin (as already mentioned in connection with Sankara-Naraya, and especially Anantesvara, Who is worshipped as Parasurama though in the form of a lingam.
At this time, not only in the immediate area of Udupi, but throughout the universe, there was an intense feeling of unrest, to such a degree that many of the demigods, headed by Caturmukha (four-headed) Lord Brahma got together to form a body to approach[ANI15] Lord Vishnu (Narayana), begging for Him to relieve them of their suffering. None of them could bear any longer the anguish of the poisonous philosophies of the Mayavadis and Buddhists (Sunyavadis). Knowing that a scheduled incarnation of Lord Vishnu was not due to appear for many years, Lord Brahma explained that even his sampradaya appeared lost, and there was a more than desperate need to re-establish the link. Lord Narayana looked around the assembled demigods with a view to sending one of them for this difficult service. Lord Narayana saw the worthy candidate, Vaya (prana) who promotes the life of all earthly creatures, who is an expert preacher, and who knows how tosatisfy his Lord. He possessed the ability to fulfil the desired deed.
Lord Narayana called Vayudeva near. "Oh, you Lord Vayu, possessing an auspicious face. Go to the earth and decorate that place in the Kali Yuga with your third incarnation as Madhva. You will again establish My personal form which pleased those who are not envious of Me. Revive their devotion for Me, as at present My devotees are suffering due to the lack of pure devotion for Me. They cannot tolerate the absence of Me in My personal form for even a moment and are praying to Me for help. Those who have emnity toward Me have polluted the atmosphere with childish, whimsical philosophies squeezed from between the lines of the Brahma Sutras only partially revealling My opulence. Now go and make your appearance in the family of My most pious Brahmanas. Make clear the message of the Upanisads through the Brahma Sutra." Vayu accepted this mission with folded hands and head slightly tilted forward in respect to receive this service with honour from the Lord of the Devas (Devendra).
At this time in the town of Udupi, a huge festival was going on for the Makara Sankranti (marking of the passage of Sagatarius to Capricorn - the half yearly solar equinox on the 14th January). Thousands of devotees had come to the tmeple of Anantasana to make spiritual benefit on the auspicious moment. Suddenly, amidst the crowd, a dull looking man appearing possessed, climbed the flag pillar at the entrance of the Anantasana Temple, then in a bizarre fashion, he started to dance and shout in a deranged manner. When he had captured the attention of the whole town, his mood changed. Actually, it was revealed that the dullard had become possessed by Lord Anantaswara to announce the following message:
"Mukyaprana, the incarnation of Lord Vayudeva the great devotee of Lord Vishnu, will appear here in Udupi in a very short time to smash all demoniac impersonalist philosophies and re-establish the loving service in full attributes to the personal form of Lord Vishnu. This devotee himself is possessing six wonderful qualities - fame, wealth, renunciation, beauty, strength and knowledge, and whom is none other than Bhagavan Vayu. No longer will any soft-hearted devotee have to hear that the Supreme Personality of Godhead be subjected to criticism and mundane views of being deaf, dumb, lifeless, limbless, formless or who is covered by illusion by pasandi heretics propounding nirvisesha philosophy. Mukyaprana will appear amongst you and will fulfil your desires for real religion; you will all be satisfied and a new purified doctrine will be your solace."
Then the possessed dullard returned to his normal dull condition, climbed down and again disappeared into the festive, bustling, mumbling crowd. Madhyageha Bhatta walked the eight miles southeast back to Pajakaksetraxvii that evening, not knowing of the coming events that he would be directly involved in.
The pride of the middle house (madhya geha), although a young man, had a wealth of understanding of the Vedas. Throughout his schooling he had the reputation as one who is a devotee scholar, not merely interested in Brahman; his object was Parambrahman, the Supreme Personality of Godhead Narayana. After some time "Madhyageha" Bhatta, as he became known, was arranged to marry a pure and devout lover of Lord Vishnu by the name of Vedavati. Both of them were free from attachment to the bodily concept of life and the false attachment to society, friendship and "love" that goes along with it. Madhyageha Bhatta was always very eager to hear the pastimes of the many incarnations of Lord Vishnu, and render devotional service to the Deity of Anantasana in Udupi. Madhygeha spoke to his chaste wife about bringing into this world a pure son, one worthy of being called putra (one who saves his parents from hell). xviii
To obtain a putra from the Lord was their desire, but how to bring into this world a child who is not touched by the modes of passion and ignorance, who is pure by nature and worthy of the mercy of Lord Vishnu?
Madhyageha Bhatta and his wife decided to approach their Ista Deva (family Deity) Lord Narayana and make a pure vow. They then served Lord Ananrasana in Udupi for twelve years with pure minds in pure devotion, free from lust and greed. As their austerity they drank only milk throughout those twelve years, observing the same vows as Aditi and Kasyapa who were impelled by Lord Brahma to undergo this penance to obtain Lord Vamadeva as their son. Among their vows they also partook of only milk as their eatables and lived simply, always remembering Lord Narayana and always chanting His glories and Holy Name. At the end of this time they decided to perform the Garbhadana samskara, after taking the Lord's blessings. Madhyageha purified his body with pancagavya prasana, offered arghyas, flowers and lamps to the Lord, and they stated their desire to bring into this world a cent percent pure devotee to save everyone from further suffering. During this twelve year period they observed the same vows as Aditi and Kasyapa who were impelled by Lord Brahma to undergo penance to obtain Lord Vamanadeva as their son. Among other vows, they partook only of milk as their eatables and lived simply always remembering Lord Narayana and chanting His glories and holy name.
After the purificatory menstrual period, choosing the male star and the suitable day for conception according to the proper varam (day) tithi (time) and nakshatra (asterism) they invoked the blessings of Lord Narayana. They then united by the principles of religious sex and by the Lord's grace, Vedavati conceived a child.
In the Madhva Vijaya (2.25) it is described that the incarnation of Lord Vayudeva (Mukhyaprana) entered the body of the wife of that pure Vaishnava Brahmin in his partial aspect, in the same way a King enters a well decorated city, shining clean with bright new gates and containing houses with fine features. Mukhyaprana was that King, who is Bhagavan possessed of six opulences, wealth, fame, knowledge, beauty, strength and renunciation entered into the womb of Vedavati. On this point though, Madhva Vijaya suggests that Mukhyaprana evicted the soul born of the conception of Madhyageha and Vedavati, and thus expelling that child, Vayu appeared of his own will and placed himself in that womb.
Because Mukhyaprana's incarnation was situated in Vedavati's womb, she became incredibly effulgent and was decorated with all thirty two auspicious qualities.xix Madhva Vijaya describes her body as being like the temple of Lord Vishnu, the Supreme Lord because of her pure devotion.
The pumsavana samskara was performed at three months pregnancy and then simmontanayana (swadabhaksana) feeding the child in the womb, parting the hair, etc. purificatory rites were performed at seven months. The fire sacrifices for the safe delivery of the child were performed according to Brahminical rites, and lo and behold, within a few days a son was born to Madhyageha and his chaste wife Vedavati.xx
Madhyageha Bhatta called for learned Vedic astrologers to come, and together they performed the jatakarma (birth ceremony) by offering all nice things to the child and bathed him in panca gavya (cow dung, cow urine, ghee, milk and yogurt) and pancamrta (ghee, milk, yogurt, honey and sugar water). They also put gold and ghee on his tongue to invoke good health and intelligence, tulasi to invoke devotion to the Lord, and honey to invoke good appetite. Then the learned astrologers made a chart to see what kind of son had been born. They were amazed as all thirty two auspicious signs were there in his person and the chart said that this boy is none other than the scheduled avatar of Vayudeva. His purpose for coming was that of reform, to change the ways of misguided men and to firmly establish the personal philosophy of Lord Vishnu. He would be a great acarya as previously he had been Hanuman and Bhimasena respectively.
THE BIRTH OF VASUDEVA
At the time of his birth, kettle drums could be heard from the demigods in the heavens and everyone rejoiced. Madhyageha Bhatta's family was ecstatic and the whole Brahmin community came to celebrate. The good people and alsoo the ruffians came to congratulate Madhyageha Bhatta, his wife and the whole family. Madhyageha Bhatta worshipped his ista-deva with gratitude and then came to see the child. Upon seeing the bright moonlike face of the newborn child, Madhyageha smelt his new son's head and gave him the name Vasudeva. Mudillaya, a Brahmin friend of Madhyageha Bhatta gave a first class milking cow and calf to the child, for he said that after twelve years of devotion, the Lord of the cows, Govinda, gave Madhyageha a pure devotee son. Everyone looked on the face of Vasudeva. Then they remembered the prediction outside the Anantesvara Temple all those years before. Observing the events, the astrological charts, and the beaming face of the child, everyone was convinced that this boy and the aforementioned avatara of Vayudeva were one and the same. The prophecy had been fulfilled.
The date of Vasudeva's (Madhvacarya's) appearance is still to this day covered. There are many evidences for each and every date, the place everyone agrees on.....
I will now try to present an un-biased account of what the dates are, who compiled them, and some brief reason behind each where possible.
Most authorities agree that Madhva's appearance was in the year Vilambi and he disappeared in the time of Pingala, but in which Vilambi and which Pingala year is another thing. A list of each is as follows for the particular era which we are dealing with.
Years that Vilambi fell in:
1040 Sakabda Era 1118 AD
1100 Sakabda Era 1178 AD
1160 Sakabda Era 1238 AD
Years that Pingala fell in:
1119 Sakabda Era 1197 AD
1179 Sakabda Era 1258 AD
1239 Sakabda Era 1317 AD
The local Udupi town guide book, without question, gives the year 1238 AD as the date of birth. Dr BNK Sharma presents in his book "History of the Dwaita School of Vedanta and it's Literature" a list of events from an inscription of a direct disciple of Madhva and second "successor" of Madhva on the "Pitha", The evidence of these inscriptions show that Narahari Tirtha was in Kalinga between 1264 and 1293 AD. It appears also that he was Prime Minister of the kingdom between 1281-93. If the statement of the Mahabharata Tatparyanirnaya were to be taken in it's literal sense, Madhva would have lived up to 1278 only, as he is traditionally assigned a life of seventy nine years.xxi Now according to the uniform testimony of the Mutt Lists, Madhva was succeeded by Padmanabha Tirtha who remained on the Pitha for seven years, and after him by Narahari Tirtha who occupied the Pitha for nine years. On this view, Narahari Tirtha would have come to the Pitha in 1285, but the evidence of inscriptions show he was still in Kalinga in the years 1289, 1291 and 1293. The obvious inference would be from these statements is that he could not have come to the Pitha until after 1293. It cannot be supposed that Narahari Tirtha was allowed to be the minister of Kalinga and to occupy the Pitha at one and the same time (as a sannyasi) between 1285 and 1293. The Mutt lists agree in placing Narahari's demise in the cyclic year of Shrimukisa. These two facts show that the event cannot be placed before 1333 AD. Calculating backwards from the recorded year of Narahari Tirtha's demise, we arrive at 1317 (Pingala) as the very latest time of Madhva's disappearance from this world, and calculating 79 years back brings us to 1238 AD. This date has also been accepted by Saltore in his book called Ancient Karnataka (Tuluva History) 1936. In the booklets of Paraya Pejwara Mutt in 1984 by Banajee Govindacarya, he also supports the year 1238 AD, and goes on the say, "We should go back 744 years from now. As many as 4338 years have paseed since the inception of Kali Yuga and the 4339th year is running (1984 AD). Indeed the Vijaydasami, following the Navaratri in the bright half of the month (Sukla Paksa) of Asvayuja (Padmanabha or Asvini Sukla) in the year of Vilambi 1238 AD is a day of great festivity. On the afternoon of that day Acarya Madhva was born in this tiny hamlet of Karnataka."
In the book of Padmanabhacar, the Vijayadasami of Vilambi supported by the year 1199 AD is referred to, and then it goes on to say that the year of his upanayana (sacred thread) was in 1204, Madhva's sannyasa was in 1210 AD and his first trip to Badrinatha was in 1217 AD. Actually Padmanabhacar gives many other example also. He quotes the swami of Adhamar Mutt and other pandits as saying 1040 Saka (1118 AD).
Visvapriya Tirtha Jnr Swami of Admar Mutt told me that Vijayadasami on a Wednesday afternoon was the day of Madhva's birth. This is what is also stated by Mr. Subbha Rao of Salem College, but he also says that this could have been the year of Madhva's sannyasa initiation. The Uttaradi Mutt in Udupi also says this, as it is written in their inscriptions of all the acaryas from the very start of their guru parampara. Shrila Prabhupada, the Founder Acarya of ISKCON also marks the date as 1040 Sakabda Era corresponding to 1118 AD, and he includes that to some he (Madhva) was born in the year 1160 Sakabda Era (1238 AD). Chaitanya Charitamrita (Madhya Lila 9.245).
SUBSEQUENT SAMSKARAS AND MEETING THE BRAHMARAKSASA IN THE FOREST
After the usual resting period for the mother in a Brahmin family, the niskraman samskara was then performed. Everyone started out for the Anantasana temple in Udupi to show their gratitude to the Lord. This would be Vasudeva's first journey outside the house. Madhyageha Bhatta, Vedavati, three men in the fron and four men behind, accompanied Vasudeva to walk to nearby Udupi to present the newborn child to Lord Anantaswara. On their arrival at the temple, Madhyageha Bhatta worshiped Lord Anantaswara and prayed for the well-bring of the child. After spending the day in Udupi, Madhyageha Bhatta, carrying his crest jewel, and the others set out to return to Pajakasetra through the forest in the middle of the night.
To say "forest" is an understatement, as it was a jungle with not even so much as a cart track, only a winding overgrown footpath that was sometimes used. This part of the jungle was well known as the abode of a brahmaraksas (demon Brahmin) ghost who used to harass passersby. Suddenly one of the men in the party started vomitting blood and screaming. Madhyageha Bhatta started to recite sacred mantras to exorcise the ghost from his friend's body, sprinkling water him with water from his gindhi (spouted water pot), but to no avail. The ghost, in fact, became more ferocious and said through the man possessed, "I am capable of killing all those who have come at the time of our play (midnight) and who are deoid of the power of protection of Mukhyaprana. However I know that this small boy is that same Pranesvara Vayu. It is indeed wonderful. The only way you can be free of me is by placing the dust of the small Lord, Loka Guru, preceptor of the world, upon my head, thus freeing me from this ghostly body and your friend from my haunting."
Fearful, Madhyageha Bhatta placed the baby Vasudeva's little lotus feet on the haunted man's head, and in a flash the haunted man fell to the ground, weak, but free from the Brahma Raksas ghost. Blaming themselves for coming through the jungle at this dangerous time of night, and praying to Lord Narayana and His devotee, they were overjoyed with their newcomer. Quickly they headed through the jungle to Pajakaksetra and on their arrival Madhyageha Bhatta, Vedavati and their party pondered over the events, thinking, "So this is the same Mukhyaprana (Hanuman and Bhimasena) that was predicted at Anantasana temple by the crazy man on the flag post. The demons tried many times to kill Hanuman and Bhima. We have to look after this child." Like loving family members they were covered over with family affection and lost their true memory of who saved who in the jungle.
Within a few weeks Vasudeva was crawling and everyone who saw him was astonished to see such a bright and lively baby. His size for his age was already huge. He drank breast milk, as much and more than his mother could possibly supply. Growing and growing, he was always hungry. His mother had to give him milk every half an hour, and still he was hungry.
ANNAPRASNA (FIRST GRAINS)
Once Vedavati, who is described in Madhva Vijaya as Vasudeva's timid mother, went out of the house to see to some household chores, although she couldn't bear the separation of not being with the boy even for a moment. Quietly she asked her young daughter who was older than Vasudeva, to look after him for a moment, but as soon as Vedavati was out of the room and out of earshot, Vasudeva started calling again for his mother and this meant only one thing - more breast milk. Vasudeva was just about old enough to have his Annaprasna Samskara (first grains). It was obvious to everyone that his poor mother could not supply enough milk to satisfy this growing baby. By now the beautiful young daughter of Vedavati was trying her best to pacify Vasudeva. She told him, "Don't cry, there is really no need. Soon mother will come and give you milk, and maybe even some nice soft bananas." More and more he cried until, in desperation, the girl took up Vasudeva in her arms and tried to console him, but to no avail. In a state of despair she kept glancing down the path, eagerly waiting for the return of her mother, but she could see nothing and Vasudeva's crying would not stop.
Perplexed, and knowing what the hungry young boy wanted, and seeing a bag of horse gram (boiled rough pulse which was kept to feed the household cattle), she tipped the 40 kilo bag onto it's side and allowed Vasudeva to eat. She ran to get her mother, and on their return, to her dismay, they found every grain of the 40 kilos gone, and Vasudeva, with a satisfied moon-like face and full belly inside the bag, chomping away. Thus he performed his own Annnaprasna ceremony in grand style. Baby Vasudeva, beaming from ear to ear surprised Vedavati who said, "Even a young bull would be full with this lot. How is it that my son has eaten and digested all this, and you, my girl, gave it to him?"
Out of her abundant pampering and attentione, Vedavati again gave Basudeva breast milk and then brought Madhyageha Bhatta to see that his health was not impaired by such heavy horse grain. That pure Brahmin recited the Dhanvantari Santisukta for the welfare of the child,xxii and his family members caressed him. The whole time his smile was very attractive.
Madhva Vijaya (2.43) describes how young Vasudeva would speak beautifully in indistinct words playing the part of a small baby, infatuating everyone. His rocking movements, learning to crawl, then standing on his own and gradually walking were very pleasing to the devotees. Just as the childhood pastimes of Lord Krishna captured everyone's hearts, so all these childhood pastimes of the avatar of Vayudeva were very enchanting.
One morning the small boy wandered off on his own, as small boys do, to discover the world for himself. Vasudeva had just turned one year old, but with his usual boldness and courage even at this young age, he left the house and walked through the gosalla where the cows were feeding. Vasudeva decided to play with a bull, so catching hold of the tail of the bull, it took off in all directions taking young Vasudeva with him. Now this was no small bull - it's body was big, with symmetrical and sharp horns. Vasudeva, with a strong hold on the tail of the bull, wandered, ran and played all day long in many forests and grazing areas.
Vedavati, unable to find Vasudeva, became worried, so Madhyageha Bhatta and close friends combed the area looking for him. They looked in the houses, even checking the well. Where could he be? They were all in complete anxiety as to the welfare of "such a fragile baby", when in the evening they saw him riding on the end of the most ferocious bull's tail. Looking even more beautiful than ever, this one year old boy was decorated by the dust from the hooves of the bull, beaming with smiles and enjoying the fun.
"Why have you been away like this? You worried your mother so much. We couldn't find you anywhere." all the villagers told him, but how could they chastise him? By the grace of Lord Anantasana this boy was amongst them, and they all loved him so much that the separation and the anxiety was too intense. Now he was back, his bright and smiling face, and the fine features of his body satisfied everyone, like a poor man that has found a precious touchstone that turns iron into gold, or like the devotee who has earnestly taken to the fulfilling path of obtaining the supreme abode of Lord Vishnu.
VASUDEVA PAYS HIS FATHER'S DEBTS WITH TAMARIND SEEDS
Vasudeva, in his usual playful way, once approached Madhyageha Bhatta for something to eat, being always hungry. Vasudeva's father tried to explain that he couldn't supply him any more food today as Kakrashetty (the person from whom Madhyageha had received the big bull) now wanted payment. Having no funds to pay him, Kakrashetty had taken to darna (fasting on their doorstep), so Madhyageha told him that they couldn't take food whilst owing monies to him. He explained that there are three things which bring ruination to a family - ill health if neglected, fire, and debts. How could he take foodstuffs or feed his family with the anxiety of debts, which is the cause of ill health?
Vasudeva told his father to tell his mother to prepare some nice foodstuffs, and that he (Vasudeva) would take care of the previous owner of the bull. Quite often while playing with a small friend, he would collect a few handfuls of tamarind seeds and play with them, pretending they were monetary coins. Now, Madhyageha Bhatta observed Vasudeva collecting a big bag of these dried tamarind seeds that had fallen from the tree in his back garden. When asked what herwas doing, Vasudeva very boldly told his loving father that he was going to pay the creditor for the bull, "So we can eat again." Telling him that he would fast until Kakrashetty was satisfied, Madhyageha bade Vasudeva to have his meal, but instead Vasudeva went to Kakrashetty, who was awaiting payment. Vasudeva told Kakrashetty to come with him as he would be paid in full, but when they reached the tamarind tree, Vasudeva bent down and started pouring handfuls of dried tamarind seeds from the bag that he had collected. At first Kakrashetty, in a playful mood, felt inclined to play with this darling of the middle house and accepted the tamarind seeds into his hands. However, as he did this, he saw the seeds turn into gold coins before his very eyes, many time more than what the bull was worth. Taking the full payment and more, Kakrashetty left that place in ecstacy and Vasudeva ran back into the house to his parents and the waiting meal. Vasudeva told his father to come and eat, as the creditor had been paid in full. Just then Kakrashetty came back to the door and thanked Madhyageha Bhatta profusely for the payment and the gift of extra gold coins for being late. Kakrashetty went on to say how Vasudeva had given him full payment underneath the big tamarind tree in the garden and he went away.
However, another time he came back for payment for something else, and Madhyageha Bhatta told Kakrashetty to obtain payment from his son. Expecting a bag of gold as before, Kakrashetty approached Vasudeva, by by his association, Vasudeva, the incarnation of Lord Vishnu's devotee Lord Vayu, completely changed the man's heart and gave him the more precious gift than gold of bhakti lata bija - the seed of devotional service to Lord Vishnu. The news of these events made a great impression on the people of the time, and the pastimes of this extra-ordinary boy were being compared to the wonderful childhood pastimes of the darling of mother Yasoda, Shri Krishna. Knowing these extra-ordinary events to be purely transcendental, the Vaishnavas of South Kanada relished them over and over again.
THE LORD ESCORTS VASUDEVA
When Vasudeva was about three years old, his parents, who are described as being dear to everyone, took Vasudeva to a family function at nearby Nediyoora village where Vasudeva's mother's family lived. It was a huge festival with hundreds of relatives and all their children. At these times there is much meeting, greeting, honouring family elders, children playing, loud talking and general family talks and partying. Family members who hadn't met for so many years, saw the new child and "oh , ....... the new baby.", unpacking of gifts, etc., - the usual village talk.
Taking full advantage of the bustle and general confusion of the whole assembly, Vasudeva decided to go to the temple. The Supreme Lord Narayan, knowing that His devotee didn't want to stay in such a mundane gathering, personally came to take Vasudeva on a tour. Persons that Vasudeva met on the narrow path leading south to Kanana Devata at Kudavoor asked him, "Child, where do you wish to go?" but Vasudeva replied only with a pleasing smile from his moonlike face. This is a walk of a mile or two to visit the temple of Lord rama. Vasudeva entered the pagoda and wwent into the inner sanctum and offered his respects there, and then he went to the temple of Talakude (Bannaje) and offered respects to Lord Hari residing within the Siva Linga there. After taking darsan at these sacred tirthas and overjoyed by the sight of the Lord Who has a lotus navel, Lord Vishnu, Vasudeva headed for Udupi.
This small boy of exemplary behaviour was showing everyone how to act. Constantly he was remembering Lord Narayana and at every opportunity he was offering his prostrated obeisances to the Lord, but seeing such a small boy of three years spontaneously offering respects and prayers like this was a little bewildering for some of the Brahmins there.
In Udupi, Vasudeva first visited the Candramoolesvara temple of Lord Siva and offered his respects before going to Lord Ananteswara. There he stayed for some time, offering prayers and respectful obeisances.
By this time, back at the festivities, Madhyageha Bhatta had noticed that for some time now he had not seen his son. He asked his wife if she had seen him, and when she told him she hadn't either, in almost desperation they combed the whole area looking for their son. News spread from mouth to mouth that the darling of Pajakasetra had gone missing and now night was about to fall. Alone out there somewhere, with no-one to protect him; what would the poor boy do? Asking everyone in the vicinty if they had seen the boy, they found that he had headed south. Practically the feasting and partying stopped at the family function as everyone was looking for little "helpless" Vasudeva. Madhyageha Bhatta, going from temple to temple, finally found Vasudeva absorbed, looking at Lord Anantasana. He immediately checked his son for any inauspicious presence by smelling his son's head again and again. Tears of joy flowed from Madhyageha's eyes at having found Vasudeva.
In the Madhva Vijay (3.9) it is described how Madhyageha Bhatta came across the small boy just as a bumblebee comes across the nectar to be found in the lotus flower being directed by the scent carrying breeze.
Vasudeva beaming, was not even thinking he had done wrong or put anyone into a state of intense anxiety as he had. He now stood before his father who asked, "Vasudeva, how did you come so far on your own on this difficult path through the forest and lanes? I can't understand how?" Cheerfully the young boy replied that, "Lord Narayana escorted me to Bannajee, then Lord Hari escorted me to the eastern direction and on to Udupi. I then offered my respects to Lord Anantasana in the western direction and He brought me here to His temple, so I wasn't alone, father." Saying this, the child shone like a gem in the assembly of caring relatives and friends who were all wonderstruck.
Madhyageha Bhatta immediately prayed to Lord Anantasana to protect his son, "... who came here to the Anantasana temple without his family. He likes to wander here and there of his own accord, sometimes on the paths and roads, sometimes in the forests. Please therefore protect him from all causes of fear like wild animals or bandits." After praying like this, Vasudeva and his parents returned to Nediyoora and the family function for as long as social etiquette required. Then Madhyageha Bhatta, his wife and Vasudeva returned to Pajakaksetra and to the lap of Mother Laxmi, in her aspects of Yogamayi (Durga) on top of Vimana Hill.
This great soul, who masqueraded as a small boy playing childish pranks and games like a three of four year old, spent many long hours playing around the Durga Vimana Hill (Vimangiri), and simply loved to be alone in the temple of Yogamayi seated on top of the hill. Some say that his choosing to play on his own on the slopes of Vimangiri was actually as if he were playing in the direct company of Durgadevi, (Yogamayi, the sister of Krishna of Vrndavan) and this was enough for him.
VIDYA RAMBHA SAMSKARA
As Vasudeva grew, day by day he showed signs that he was incredibly intelligent, grasping anything that required study almost immediately, so Madhyageha Bhatta thought it time to perform the Vidya Rambha (also known as Hate Khadi and Akshar Abhyasam) - his beginning of primary education - samskara, even though a year or two early. Madhyageha Bhatta saw that teaching Vasudeva the alphabet and showing him how to form the letters with the fenetic sounds was so natural and easy for the boy to pick up, it was as though he already knew everything but was just keeping it a secret. Traditionally this is a very big event in a child's life, and many relatives, friends and well-wishers come to give presents and blessings to the young boy. The Brahmins chanted mantra suktas, and swastivacan to invoke the blessings of the Lord upon the boy who was clean shaven, bathed and dressed in new cloth. When everyone saw the way Vasudeva mastered the subject being taught in the first few minutes of his primary education on his first day they were astonished. Then Vasudeva asked his father, "Oh father, why do I have to repeat the same group of letters again and again? This I already know." As soon as his father showed him something, that was it - what next?
With no effort one could easily see that the goddess of learning, Bharati Devi, Sarasvati, was in her natural position, standing with folded hands offering her respects to the great devotee of Lord Narayana, Lord Vayu, in his plenary portion as Vasudeva-Mukhyaprana.
Vasudeva was showing himself to be almost too intelligent, because of the way he absorbed everything and people's minds were becoming a little disturbed. So Madhyageha Bhatta decided to teach Vasudeva in a secluded place. He was worried that maybe seeing how smart the boy was, that maybe sopmeone out of enviousness, would perform some tantric misdeed or magical feat, of put "the evil eye" on him. Even Mother Yasoda felt much the same way about the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Parambrahman, Lord Shri Krishna as a baby. Mother Yasoda and the elderly gopis used to perform Nyasa on baby Krishna, touching the parts of His body and asking in the form of mantra that the Narayana expansions of the Lord they had before them come and protect this baby. Such is parental love.
THE DEFEAT OF THE PURANICA (LEARNED RECITER OF THE PURANAS)
A short time later was good proof as to how much this "small boy" was learned. One day Vedavati took her son to a religious festival at nearby Neyampalli. As in religious festivals, there were rituals, pujas, yajnas, dramas, and in this one, a wedding also. Madhyageha Bhatta didn't go to this festival, so while Vedavati attended the wedding ceremony, her son Vasudeva slipped off to hear the recitals and stories from the Puranas told by the renouned Puranic narrator of the name Siva Madinya (Madikullaya). This Puranica was famous for reading to very large audiences, and as the narrator narrated a story from the Puranas, suddenly Vasudeva jumped up and accused the narrator, "The story that you are telling does not confrom with the purports of the great saintly rsis and munis like Vyasadeva and Sukadeva. Therefore what you are saying is highly speculative and cannot be taken as authoritative." Looking around, to the astonishment of the listeners, these words were coming from the mouth of a small four year old boy.xxiii On the prompting of all the persons in the assembly, Vasudeva told the proper account of the story that was polluted by the narrator, giving the correct meaning and completely defeating the bogus speculations of the "narrator". Flowers poured from the sky as the demigods honoured the boy, and all the assembly also glorified and praised the learning of the small boy, Vasudeva. Then the assembly broke up and all went their separate ways, leaving the narrator alone. Vasudeva returned to his mother and they both went back to Pajakaksetra where he asked his father, "Who is correct? Is it the narrator Siva or me who has speculated on the sastra?" Madhyageha Bhatta told his son that he was correct, after hearing what both had said. Madhyageha Bhatta thought to himself that the reason for his son's wonderfully sharp intelligence was due to the mercy of Lord Anantasana, and in that way Madhyageha Bhatta always remembered his Lord Anantaswara.
Another incident of the same nature occured around the same time but in connection with Madhyageha Bhatta, who was reading from Maha-Bhagavat Purana (Shrimad Bhagavatam) before a large crowd of people. In the course of the reading and talk that followed, Madhyageha Bhatta explained the meaning of words to a particular verse to be different kinds of trees like the tulasi, banyan, pippal, amla, nim, mango, kadamba trees, etc., but purposely missed out the word 'likuca". Vasudeva immediately interjected and stated, "Father, without giving the meaning of the word "likuca", why do you attempt to give this class? All the other words you have explained. I think you are cheating by not explaining this word." Madhyageha Bhatta was then prompted by the crowd to give the meaning to the word, but despite the prompting, he would not give the meaning. Vasudeva again said, "Why father, are you cheating everyone. You are simply a pretender. This likuca is a lime tree." To this the whole crowd worshipped Vasudeva, who, with his bright moon-like face, was unequalled in learning or spiritual potency.
UPANAYANA (SACRED THREAD)
Generally young boys take upanayana at around eight years, but Madhyageha Bhatta, seeing his son's livel of spiritual enlightenment, arranged for the ceremony to be performed when Vasudeva was just five years old. For Madhyageha Bhatta and Vasudeva both, this is a marked change is their lives, especially for Vasudeva, for now he had formally taken to brahmacarya training and an acceptance that now childhood was over and that this was a time for Vedic study, spiritual persuits, initiation into chanting of sacred mantras, worship of Surya-Narayana at the junctions of morning, noon and night (sandhyavandhanam), and always wearing the sacred thread of the Brahmin. In fact, this time of life for one who accepts upanayana, is considered one's second birth.
Madhyageha Bhatta showed his pure and simple son how to light to homa and how to perform the oblations into the fire after cleansing oneself internally by mantra, and externally by bathing, wearing clean cloth, the sipping of water called acaman, and performance of nyasa (touching parts of the body with mantras). Before beginning this Madhyageha Bhatta contacted learned Brahmanas to find the proper date as to when this ceremony should be performed. His astrologers had selected Vrsabha Lagna, the bull for steadiness. According to astrological texts, the Vrsabha Lagna is considered a great asset to one's determination for completing a task, so in the matter of upanayana, or receiving the sacred triple thread of the brahmacari, Vrsabha or the bull, aids determination, sensual control, and the undertaking of heavy loads such as study and celebacy. This lagna is said also to be very auspicious as Lord Shri Krishna was born with this lagna.
The the fabulous ceremony that followed, the guru (in this case his father, Madhyageha Bhatta) sat down before the sacred fire and handed his wonderful son his karam chappals (padukas - peg shoes) and rod of the brahmacari, and new yellow cloth. Oblations were offered into the fire amidst the joyous crowd of onlookers, but in private the triple cord (sacred thread) was placed on Vasudeva's body and the gayatri mantra was whispered into the right ear. After the shaving of his head and having the ritualistic bath, he put on yellow cloth, and the mekala kusa grass belt was then placed around the boy's waist. He was shown how to sip water before eating or performing any kind of worship, and also shown how to perform prana ahuti's (om pranaya swaha, om apanaya swaha, om vyanaya swaha, om udanaya swaha, om samanaya swaha) before taking his meals. This was so natural for him to learn, but made him more hungry just chanting the mantras, as his digestive airs began to work. As a formality one is explained the meanings behind brahmacari life, then there is also acceptance of vows of celebacy, simplicity, and study of the Vedas. Everyone who saw young Vasudeva in his pure beauty accepting his sacred thread were so fascinated by his features that they could not take their eyes off him. The demigods and their wives also came in invisible forms, and enjoying the festive scene, glorified Vasudeva on this all-auspicious day. The sound of kettle drums was heard from above, and showers of flowers and flower petals rained from the sky.
Vasudeva then learned from his father how to perfrom sacred sandhya vandanam. "Sandhya" means at the conjunctions and "vandanam" means prayers.
Sandhya vandanam is performed by all Brahmins in all places to different degress of involvement. First one performs acaman, which is the process of sipping water and reciting mantras for purification, then nyasa, which is that of touching parts of the body with the fingers of the right hand and reciting a mantra whilst touching each place. Then comes vigna apaharanam, praying to the Lord to remove unwanted obstacles from one's life so one can make advancement in spiritual life. Pranayama breathing, and then a declaration of what one is doing called sankalpa. For example:
om bhagavad agyaya bhagavad kainkarya rupam
prathah sandhyam upasisye
"I am now engaged in the morning twilight prayers (gayatri) at the conjunction of night and day, under the order of the guru for the service of the Lord."
The proksanam is performed by placing of tilaks on the body and then sprinkling of purified water. Joined handfuls of water are also offered to Surya Narayana with twelve libations of tarpana.
om bhagavad agyaya bhagavad kainkarya rupam
prathah sandhyam gatyatri mahamantra japam karisye
"I am now engaged in chanting silently the gayatri maha-mantra under the direction of guru as service for the Supreme Personality of Godhead."
ayatu varada devi aksara, brahma sammitam
gayatrim candasam matar idam brahma jusasva nah
"May the all auspicious boon-confering gayatri come here to me in order to instruct me about the Lord, Who is described throughout the Vedic literature. May Gayatri devi, the mother of all meters, favour us with the truths about Lord Shri Krishna, the Supreme Brahman."
ojosi sahosi balam asi bhrajosi devanam-dhamanam asi
visvam asi visvayuh sarvam asi sarvayur abhibhurom
"You are the supreme source of nourishment, you are strength, and brilliance, you are everything, you are the supporter, and the cause of all changes in time. I am requesting your presence in the form of the pranava (omkara).
gayatrya viscamitrah rsih nicrd gayatri chandah
savita devata, sandhya vandane jape viniyogah
"Of the gayatri mantra the rishi is Visvamitra Muni, the mt\etre by which it is chanted is called nicrd swara gayatri, and the sun is the Deity. This gayatri is recited at the conjuntions of the day."
In the morning conjuntion of night coming into day after the sun has arisen, one praises the good name of Surya who is the one who supports the heavens and earth. His name is truth, is easily attained and is wonderful to hear. This sun is the friend of the universe, is all knowing and gives the fruits of action to all mankind. He never sleeps and with munificent rays he glances over all humanity. To him we offer good with ghee for obtaining good health and longevity. O Mitra - Surya Narayana, O cause of everything, we know that one who worships you will be protected and will not become troubled by disease or enemies. Also sins will not even approach that person from near or far.
Sins caused by anger, made by the mind, speech, hands, feat, stomach or reproductive organs will go completely away, thus turning even a rascal into a first class devotee of the Lord, when, with rapt attention, one offers his very life to the Supreme Personality of Godhead Lord Narayana, Whose representative is, and eye is the sun.
At noon we pray for purification from all the bad things we have come in contact with.
apah punantu prthivi puta punatu mam
punantu brahmanaspati brahma puta punatu mam
yac ucchistam abhojyam yad va dus caritam mama
sarvam punantu mam apo asatam pratigrahagm swaha
"May the waters purify the earth, May the purified earth purify me and the teacher of the Vedas. May the very purified Vedas purify me. The remnant of a non-devotee's food, or forbidden food which I have eaten, and my bad conduct and the gifts I have received from wicked person, may I be purified from reactions to all that. I offer myself as an offering into the blaze of that Supreme Person - Surya Narayana."
In the evening also - trisandhyam - at the conjunctions of the day, all Vaishnavas offer prayers to the guru and the Lord.
As the sun is about to go down one recites:
om agnis ca ma manyus ca manyu patayasca
yad anha papam akarsam
manasa vaca hastabhyam
padbhyam udarena sisnya
ahas tad avalumpatu
yat kincit duritam mayi
idam aham mam amrta yonau
satye jyotise juhomi swaha
"Save me from those sins caused by anger, O Lord! Whatever sin I may have committed during this day, by my mind, speech, hands, feet, stomach, and sexual organ as well as all other sins attaching themselves to me, mmay they all be comepletely destroyed. Thus cleansed from all sins I offer myself as an oblation into you the self-luminous truth, the souce of immortality (Surya-Narayana).
In this way, praying for the Lord to hear these prayers, praying that our regular worship does not become diminished, or omitted due to negligence, and any blame that is attributed to me unjustly, like a gamblers', or sins I have performed unknowingly, please forgive all that.
In this way Madhyageha Bhatta showed his beloved son through the proceedures to be followed by the twice born.
So the young Vasudeva was shown the ritualistic bath, given the symbolic rod of the brahmacari, the mekala belt of kusa grass, and the sacred gayatri mantras. from this day on sandhya vandanam became a part of his life, his dhyanam, or meditation.
dhyeya sada savitra mandala mandala madhya-varti
narayanah sarasijasana sannivistah
kayuravan makara kundalavan kiriti
hari hiranya vapuh dhrta sankha cakrah
sankha cakra gada pane dvaraka nilaya acyuta
govinda pundarikaksa raksa mam saranagatam
"Narayana the Supreme Personality of Godhead, is to be meditated upon in the centre of the sun globe. He is situated on a lotus flower and seated in the lotus pasture. He is adorned with beautiful golden bracelets, armulets, earrings, necklace and a crown. He has a golden effulgence and is seen holding the pure white conch and sudarshan cakra in His lotus hands. O wielder of conch, disc, club and other natural weapons, You are the Lord and resident of Dwaraka Puri. O indestructable one, protector of the worlds, O lotus eyed Lord, please save all of us who have taken shelter of You."
Everyone who saw Vasudeva accepting his sacred thread in this way, in his pure beauty, became so fascinated by his features that they couldn't take their eyes off him. The demigods and their wives also came in invisible forms and, enjoying the festive scene, glorified Vasudeva on this all auspicious day. The sound of kettle drums was heard from above and showers of flowers and flower petals rained from the sky,
SNAKE DEMON VANQUISHED
Just after Vasudeva returned back to Pajakaksetra after his upanayana, Vasudeva encountered a huge five-headed snake demon. Many believed this snake to be the demon Maniman who was killed by Bhima during the Mahabharata war. They say that he was so envious of Bhima that he took his birth in the woods near Pajakaksetra just to try to kill the young Vasudeva who, in his second incarnation of Vayu, was Bhimasena.
Once Vasudeva and his friends were in the area of the Durga Vimana as usual, just nearby Pajakaksetra, when Vasudeva passed by the place where the snake demon Maniman dwelt near the thickets and bushes. As he passed by, the snake demon pounced and attacked Vasudeva with his sharp and poisoned fangs. The local people, upon hearing that Vasudeva had been bitten by this deadly creature, were on the verge of fainting.
As everyone knows, when a small boy or five or six gets bitten by a snake, he needs immediate medical attention in order to survive the poisonous venom inflicted into his system. However, this small boy Vasudeva was attacked by a huge monster of a snake with five heads. The attack was unpredicted, fierce and quick, but Vasudeva, keeping a cool head, vanquished that snake demon with the big toe of his powerful little foot. Looking at the place of the bit that was inflicted by Maniman, there was no wound to be seen. Further more, Vasudeva was not affected by this incident in any way.
Madhya Vijaya (3.41) describes that this Vasudeva, who has accepted the form of a small boy, is only a semblance of such. Definitely he is that Mukhyaprana who was sent to earth at the request of all the demigods including Lord Brahma, Lord Siva, Lord Indra, Lord Candra and Brihaspati.
To this day one can visit the place where this incident happened. Between Vimangiri and Pajakaksetra a small shrine has been erected around an impression of the snake demons hoods pressed into the solid rock, his head being turned into a paste.
VASUDEVA'S FOOTPRINTS IN HIS PARENT'S HOUSE
Caught up in play with his little Brahmin boy friends, Vasudeva used to quite often put his mother in anxiety as to where he was. Although in his play Madhyageha Bhatta and Vedavati were lenient, when they called, they expected Vasudeva to come. On one such occasion, in the same pastime of the killing of the snake demon, Vedavati was calling Vasudeva from the family house at Pajakaksetra. Vasudeva, playing with his friends and with his absorption in play and killing the serpent, did not come straight away. His anxious mother kept calling and calling when finally Vasudeva jumped into the air like Hanuman going to Gandamadana Mountain to collect herbs for the injured Laxman. A couple of kilometers away, his jump finished at his mother's feet. The impressions that this small boy's feet made are still there in the parental house. His mother at this time didn;t even know of his killing the Maniman serpent near Vimangiri, but her motherly instinct made her call out for Vasudeva, and she inspected his body to see for his safe well-being.
Being satisfied to know where Vasudeva was at any given time was always the prime concern to Madhyageha Bhatta and his chaste wife Vedavati. Knowing that now in the association of all the other young Dwijas (Brahmin boys), Vasudeva was now studying at the place of Totanithillaya,xxiv who was the school master for all the Brahmin boys of the srea. Even in school Vasudeva was always a leader. Where he went all the other boys went. He was always several steps ahead in his play, wrestling, studies, everything. Madhva Vijay (3.44) says, "This incarnation of Lord Vayudeva is more swift than the mind having controlled his mind. No-one can compare with him."
In his wrestling he would take on and beat bigger boys and on many occasions he would challenge many bigger boys. His "nick" name at school was "Bhima", his iron vice-like grip of his strong arms and hands could only be released when he wanted to release and not otherwise, and the weight he could lift or carry effortlessly could only compare to Hanuman and indeed this is actually who, in another age, Vayu assumed. In Madhva Vijay is says that Vasudeva, with a gently smiling face, easily defeated everyone. His friends, associates, and peers would sometimes, after being defeated by Vasudeva in water sports, splash water at him out of rivalry, making his lustre and reddish eyes appear even more beautiful.
Vasudeva's Brahmin teacher (Pujavan), who was born in the Brahmin family of Totantillaya, could not relate to Vasudeva's brilliance at all. At every opportunity Vasudeva would run home for more food to eat, and then slowly return to school, avoiding his study. On one such occasion Totantillacaya Brahmin, very angry, accused Vasudeva of not being very attentive to his study either during class or whilst avoiding class, or in his after class homework. "Why do you, Vasudeva, not study with your school friends? You act as though indifferent to study?" Vasudeva replied that he didn't see the point in repeating that which he had already learnt, and besides, "I'm completely up to date with my studies." Totantillaya was furious at the boldness of the boy's statements and told him to repeat the sloka verses that they had studied that day. Vasudeva not only repreated verbatim the day's slokas, but all the following slokas that they had not studied yet in school. Totantillaya was shocked. His recitation of the sastras complied with all the rules for chanting mantras and put his teacher into a spin. How could it be? Impossible, he thought. His recitation of the sastra complied with all the rules of jata, pada and krama meters for chanting mantras. Not only did he know all these verses but he also pronounced them with such clarity and perfect pronunciation it had caused the demigods to appear in the sky to hear. Who was this boy? After many such incidents of Vasudeva showing some of his nature, he was given the title at school "Anumana Tirtha", for his ability to always find the perfect verse to explain any given circumstance and also elaborate on that point, giving his purport for clarifying the instance.
Once in a desolate part of the forest, Totantillaya's son, who was a fellow student in the gurukula, developed an unbearable acute headache which Vasudeva cured by taking the boy to one side and blowing in his ear. In the Bhavaprakasika it is said that by Vasudeva's divine breath he not only blew into the ear of the boy and this cured him of his head-ache, but at the same time showed Totantillaya's son, as though by television, his many births and the conditions thereof during his time in this world.
In Madhva Vijay (3.54-55) there is a mention of Mahaitareyopanisad which clearly propounds the greatness of Lord Vishnu. Madhva Vijay also says how the devotee of Lord Vishnu, Vasudeva, having once heared this great Aitareyopanisad understood it's many hymns within a second. This Upanisad became his lifelong favourite. Even it is recorded that at this young age when Totantillaya started to explain this Upanisad, Vasudeva stopped him and gave a more clear explanation to which Totantillaya was immensely pleased. By now he was beginning to realize how fortunate he was of having such an incredible pupil in his school. It wasn't however until graduation day that the bond was duly sealed. Vasudeva gave as his guru daksina (reumuneration in the form of a preceptorial fee) to Totantillaya love of God - Krishna bhakti. Taking permission to leave gurukula, Vasudeva, knowing his mission and how to fulfil Lord Vishnu and all the demigod's desires, prepared himself to propagate the understanding of the personal form of the Lord and try to induce a taste within the soft hearts of the Vaishnavas to develop and appreciate love of God, and to philosophically smash those opposed to the personal form of the Lord. The guru Totantillaya, with tears of love brimming in his eyes, bade his pride and joy, his very best of students Vasudeva, a fond goodbye.
After graduating from gurukula, Vasudeva's only thought was how to give the innocent people the most substantial gift of which was the cause of his descent; to give everyone a sound philosophy which solely glorified the Supreme Personality fo Godhead, Lord Narayana-Vishnu. Only by giving these struggling devotees this priceless gift could anyone really satisfy their needs. Vasudeva saw thatt the only way to do this wholehearedly was to take the rnounced order of sannyasa under the guidance of an ascetic of good repoute coming in a bona-fide line. However Madhyageha Bhatta was already looking around for a nice Vaishnava-Brahmin girl as a suitable match for his son. Vasudeva had no interest in society, friendship and love of this material world, not any desire to become a regulated householder follower of the varnasrama system. His sole thought was preaching, so needless to say, Vasudeva had heard of one old ascetic of Bandarkare village just a few miles north of Udupi. This old sannyasi was reputed to be of the old Bhagavat sampradaya. This Acyutapreksa, whose name means "one who has knowledge of the infallible Lord Acyuta", according to Shri Madhva Vijay (4.7) he was in an earlier birth a bumble bee who used to reside in the house of the Pandavas for some years and used to take prasadam directly from the hands of Queen Draupadi.xxv Nonetheless it was for his asrama, for he possessed a pure mind and pure heart, and this was where Vasudeva was heading.
Due to there being a four hundred year gap in the Brahma sampradaya, breaking for all practical vision with Prajna, some ten guru-disciple generations previous, the gurus in this line up until Acyutaprajna (Acyutapreksa) had, out of fear of the wicked Buddhists and Mayavadins, hidden themselves away and just tried to maintain their line without drawing attention to themselves. These Kutirchak sannyasis were not strong enought to smash the onslaughts of these demoniac philosophies, so they just stayed in their asramas at the edge of their villages and tried to philosophically maintain themselves.
Once the direct preceptor of Acyutapreksa, realizing his own death to be at hand, called Acyutapreksa near to him and instructed him in secret of a quest to seek. The guru told Acyutapreksa (who was greatly learned in all the Upanisads and other sastras and who was very obedient to his guru) that though they were dressed as Advaitins, they were nor Mayavadis. He instructed him that "This Mayavadi concocted philosophy, 'When knowledge that I am actually Brahman is fully ripened then I can understand that there is nothing differnt from me. This philosophy is to be rejected by all sane men and to not believe it for a second. Certainly Brahman in there and I am here, but to be the knower of Brahman and to be merged in Brahman are not the same. To say that everything is God without any distinction is meaningless since nothing can act like God. Dogs, shoes and humans are hardly omniscient, nor do they create the universe, on the other hand everything is part of the same Supreme Absolute Reality. The sun is the celestial body that shines, but on the other hand one can distinguish from the sunglobe and the sunshine. The identity of the tiny individual soul that the Mayavadis say as being identicaly the same as Brahman in all ways, is not what our line has been following. My guru never understood Brahman in this way, not his guru, nor his guru, nor his guru. For ten generations we have remained hidden; now you be happy, worship Lord Narayana and find what is actual Brahman, Param Brahman." Having instructed Acyutapreksa in this way, the guru passed from this world.
Acyutapreksa pondered over his guru's last words and instructions to him for a long tine. He would daily go about sadhana, worshipping Lord Narayana in the form of Anantasana in Udupi, but though a tranquil devotee, he was transcendentally perplexed. One day, while in deep though on this matter, Lord Anantasana sent someone to Acyutapreksa. It is said that Anantasana again entered the body of an ordinary man and then approached Acyutapreksa thus - "Know that I well send soon to you the best of disciples to fulfil your mission to your guru and to Me." Acyutapreksa was now residing in the area of the Anantasana temple in Udupi at the Bandarkare Mutt. Taking the initiative, Vasudeva started visiting him daily and then became Acyutaprajna's prospective novice disciple (not unlike underoging a probationary period for studying each other). Acyutapreksa had this divine intuive feeling upon his first meeting with Vasudeva that actually this was the "best of disciples" that the messenger of Lord Anantasana had foretold.
At the same time however, Madhyageha Bhatta, hearing that his one and only son was spending much time with the old sannyasi Acyutapreksa, became worried. He approached Vasudeva who was the only source of life of both he and Vasudeva's loyal, devoted mother, Vedavati. As Madhyageha approached Vasudeva, vasudeva came right out with it. "I want to take sannyasa. Please give me your permission."
Madhyageha Bhatta asked Vasudeva to reconsider, after all, they were old and frail and his mother couldn't stand the separation. He asked him to wait until they passed away, until Vasudeva was older, and after householder life, in his old age he could take to this excellent life of ascetism. In this way with logic, entreaty and argument, Madhyageha Bhatta tried to dissuade his son from taking to the renounced order and thus going away from his home. Even Madhyageha Bhatta prostrated himself at the young boy's feet and begged him on behalf of he and his mother not to take sannyasa, but Vasudeva only replied that, "See, it is already confirmed. The Supreme Lord has given his permission in the forms of omens, signs, etc., for a senior family member should never prostrate himself before a junior unless that junior be in the renounced order of life." Madhyageha Bhatta then begged the old sannyasi Acyutapreksa not to initaite their son into the sannyasa order. There was no reply, and soon after Acyutapreksa headed south to Kuthyadi, now called Kayooru, across the Netravati river which runs about 38 miles south of Udupi with Vasudeva as his companion. It was here at Kuthyadi Mutt in the village of Karem that Madhyageha Bhatta found his on in the process of accepting sannyassa formally from Acyutapreksa. Vasudeva was in the process of tearing cloth into two pieces, one to go around his waist and one to cover his genitals, known as kaupin, or the traditional undergarments of the sannyasi.
Madhyageha Bhatta tried desparately for the last time to stop his determined son. "Oh son! Manu and other composers of the dharma sastra do not speak of any auspicious deed other than the protection of the parents. Those two sons of ours are dead. If you take to sannyasa we have no protector." Vasudeva then replied to his father coolly and with detachment and love. "When a man becomes detached he would take sannyasa at that time. This is well known in the Vedic literatures. Thought I am without any attachment to objects, I do not take sannyasa without fixing someone to serve both of you. (Another child will be born, a son to look after you, then I can take sannyasa.) Madhyageha Bhatta again tried to reply in a sympathetic way saying that, "From a sastric point of view I can understand what you are saying and you are very courageous, but what will your mother say. She is a simple soft-hearted woman ..." Vasudeva to the point, interrupted his father, "Father, you give me permission to take sannyasa now." and paid his prostrated obeisances to his father. Madhyageha Bhatta then said, "If your mother agrees then let it be so!" Then Madhyageha Bhatta returned to his home on the promise that until his mother gave permission, he would not take sannyasa. Soon after, by the will of Vasudeva, his mother Vedavati became pregnant. This pacified the parents of Vasudeva somewhat, though Madhyageha was still adamant as Darasatha was for Rama when at a tender age rama was baished to the forest. Cheefully Vasudeva came to Pajakaksetra and to his parents house. "Mother, if you ever want to see me again, please give me permission to take sannyasa. Otherwise, I will leave this area altogether, and I will not be seen by you even once." Naturally, any mother who felt anything for her child would be forced by such words to agree. Vedavati, distressed, gave her beloved son his desire to take sannyasa, for the thought of never seeing him again was worse than death. Vasudeva stayed around, coming and going from the family home to Acyutaprajna's asrama until finally a boy was born to Vedavati and her husband. Upon the birth of the new son, Vasudeva returned home and in agreeance with the previous arrangement in the form of silent acceptance, Vedavati, the new mother, gave her permission.
THE DATE OF SANNYASA
As with the date of his birth, there is also some controversy with the datye of Vasudeva taking sannyasa. Most madhvas accept that it was around 10 or 11 when Vasudeva took sannyasa. There are other details which are not so clear and these depend on what birth date is followed. Padmanabhacar points out that assuming that the incident of the Ganges coming to Sarovar (lake) in Udupi at the request of Vasudeva being recorded in the year 1248 when astrologically Jupiter was in Leo to be correct, then Vasudeva was in his tenth year, nine years having been fully passed.
There are others also that say Vasudeva's sannyasa took place on the Caturthi (fourth tithi) Krishnapaksa (dark fortnight) in the month of Asadha (pertaining to June-July) of a Vilambi year 1238 AD (or 1178 AD or 1118 AD). Anyway, Vasudeva definitely took sannyasa and Madhva Vijay supports the story of the Ganges.
PURNAPRAJNA TIRTHA THE NEW SANNYASIN
In this troubled time of doubt and scepticism, the pure character of the new initiate Purnaprajna (Purnabodha) Tirtha was a pleasure for all to see. They could understand that there was no ulterior motive for this young boy to take sannyasa. He was not taking sannyas for the fame such as "I am such a great devotee or strict renunciate" , or using the pulpit of sannyasa as a position just to voice his opinions. Nor did he have in mind the sense of distinction that "everyone knows me for what I am, with my opulent attire and fancy lifestyle. This will make heads turn my way" this was not there in his character. Nor was adoration by followers his motive, as we have seen hundreds of unworthy fools running here and there, eagerly willing to adore the unqualified pretender. Nor was his motivation the subtle sense gratification, that because the material world is such a bad place let me avoid it.[ANI17] Nor was it for his own salvation that he took sannyasa, nor as a form of earning a living whilst harbouring material desires. He was not pessimistic about his own lot; there was no calamities in his life. Simply he was here to preach on the order of the Supreme Lord, his motivation was the will of the Lord, nothing more, completely purely motivated.
Now Purnaprajna was formally initiated into the Brahma sampradaya into the asrama of sannyasa, and had taken vows dedicating everything - body, mind and words, in fact his very life was for the service of Lord Hari. He had accepted the sannyasa order that was given by Sanak Adi Kumar, one of the four Kumaras, who in turn initiated Durvasas Muni into sannyasa. Coming down from Lord Brahma the line went though Sanak Kumar, Durvasas Muni to Jnananidhi, to Garudavahana to Kaivalya to Jnanisa, to Paratirtha, to Satyaprajna to Prajna, and through the hidden line to Acyutapreksa, and now to Purnaprajna Tirtha, one who has full intelligence.
The people in general were touched at the gravity by which this young boy took to the sannyasa order. Even Madhyageha Bhatta was there (according to Adamar Mutt) and it was a heart rending day to see a loved one become a "walking dead man". Why a walking dead man? Because as Madhyageha Bhatta pointed out, Manu says that obligations to parents, to the demigods, to society etc. are there, but for a dead man, what obligations can exist? Only to serve Lord Hari with mind, body, words and one's very existence is the only obligation. Socially one is dead.
With no sandalwood paste decorating his body, no red lustre in his mouth from chewing betel, wearing no ornaments such as rings, armulets, and fancy necklaces, this bright faced boy was instead the ornament of the three worlds, and standing with his sannyasa rod, his lustre was incomparable. All his boyish mischief had now left him and he was sober, pure and deep. Anantasesa, the expansion of the Supreme Lord, and all the demigods starting with Rudra, garuda, Indra and Candra showered flowers from above, and kettle drums could be heard. Having tears of love and expectation in their eyes, they all looked earthwards to Purnaprajna and Acyutapreksa and the assembled onlookers, and chants of "ohu vaha ho" (oh, how wonderous) could be heard in all directions echoing from the mouths of the chanters of the Sama Veda.
When Purnaprajna offered his prostrated dandavats (like a stick) before Lord Narayana in the form of Anantasana in Udupi, a hand touched his shoulder. Again this Anantesvara had possessed the body of a human, and bringing Purnaprajna next to his sannyasa guru said, "I, Anantasana have given you Purnaprajna, because for a long time you have performed devotional service intently, trying to understand the words of your guru. You are My devotee Acyutapreksa, and I know you sincerely want spiritual understanding of Me. Therefore I give you this Purnaprajna who is the result of that service." And so the Lord revealed His promised plan that had now been actuated.
In Madhva Vijay (4.39) it points out that Acyutapreksa, thus having received the mercy of Lord Anantasana, with great joy and devotion he remembered again and again that this was all the will of the Lord, and that this disciple Purnaprajna was specially sent by the Lord and that he was not an ordinary human being. Acyutapreksa stayed only in the association of Purnaprajna understanding that he (Purnaprajna) was the crest hewel of the Lord's ornaments.
This incident of Purnaprajna taking to the staff of sannyasa, the danda, was at the place known now as danda-Grahana.
THE GANGES (TWO STORIES)
1. Purnaprajna asked Acyutapreksa if he could go to the Ganges to take sacred bath there. Acyutapreksa gave permission for his disciple to go and as he began to wish him a safe journey he realized that this meant that they would be separated for some time. Acyutapreksa immediately became distressed and almost in a state of transcendental panic he began praying earnestly to Lord Anantasana. Being compassionate on his surrendered devotee, Lord Anantasana again possed a person and spoke through him to Purnaprajna that, "On the third day from now, just to save you from leaving this place, the celestial Ganges River will come into our lake, so there is no need of you going. She will be here before you get there." Since that day, every twelve years the sacred Ganges comes to the lake by the grace of Lord Anantasana on Purnaprajna, the life and soul of Acyutapreksa.xxvi
2. Purnaprajna Tirtha, as is the etiquette, approached his sannyasa guru Acyutapreksa to take his permission to undergo a perilous tour on foot of the southern areas of India, where there were many learned pandits who followed the philosophies opposed to the personal form of the Lord. At this time Acyutapreksa would not give his consent to the young acarya, saying that for Purnaprajna to go alone was a very dangerous proposition. Just after this Purnaprajna suggested, "Then let me go for pilgrimage to the north to see Bhagirathi and bathe in the Ganges" but Acyutapreksa couldn't bear the separation. Even when Purnaprajna prostrated before the old ascetic, he would not give his permission, so Purnaprajna, with great intensity, prayed to the Lord to send a remedy. Suddenly a voice was heard from the sky declaring that Gangamayi would appear within three days at the temple sarova (lake) and would subsequently come every twelve years, At this time in the south west corner of the lake, there was seen to appear a clear white stream-like column of water gushing up from within the lake.xxvii Previously this lake was known as Ananta Tirtha, but ever since the Ganges appeared to please Purnaprajna, the lake has since been named and is now known as Madhva Sarova.
(Both variations are much the same - the story of the Ganges appearing is in Madhva Vijaya 4.40-42)
PANDIT VASUDEVA DEFEATED
Madhva Vijay 4.43 points out that by now a month and ten days had gone by since Purnaprajna Tirtha had taken to the sannyasa order of life. At this time, one pandit of the name Vasudeva, with all his followers, came to Udupi to challenge local pandits. Pandit Vasudeva asked for Acyutapreksa at the Bandarkare Mutt, hearing of Acyutapreksa's learning before even coming to Udupi. After seeking out Acyutapreksa, Pandit Vasudeva offered his respects and then challenged Acyutapreksa to debate. The whole town came out and assembled where the debate was to take place. Acyutapreksa and Purnaprajna Tirtha took their seas next to each other and listened whilst the challenging Pandit Vasudeva spoke. On a subject of his own choice, Pandit Vasudeva spoke for three days continuously without even an intermission. The assembly were amazed at the powerful way that the pandit presented his subject. At the end of his summary, making his conclusion to the threeday presentation, everyone applauded the learned pandit.
The young Purnaprajna took up the challenge. Not only did the young sannyasi reply with equal ardour and greater fluency in the subject, but Purnaprajna remembered word for word the Pandit's points and dismantled those statements with his constructive criticism. The sound of Purnaprajna's sweet coice powerfully came across, charming the assembly. Never had they heard such a sweet melodious tone of voice, though the same sweet voice mercilessly smashed the proud pandit's stance. even some of the pandit's followers tried to re-establish the pandit's presentation, but like Bhimasen's mighty club, Purnaprajna deadened the sound of the croacking bull-frogs.
Acyutapreksa was proud of his pupil, and thought that as he had defeated the pandit and his followers single-handedly, it was unnecessary teach basic philosophy and grammer to Purnaprajna as he had already shown his expertise in these subjects. Thinking that these things were learnt by Purnaprajna at gurukula, Acyutapreksa wanted to see how his sisya (disciple) would fare with the istasiddhi adwaitin philosophy of Vimuktatman. Purnaprajna had no interest in such childish word jugglery or bogus wrangling of speculations, but as it is the duty of the disciple to follow the guru, after the preliminaries were gone through and the first verse read, he said to Acyutapreksa that he had found, just in the first verse, thirty-two mistakes. He added that he didn't feel it proper that such an imperfect philosophical treatise should be studied by either of them, and so they gave it up.
By now Acyutapreksa had some pretty intense realizations as to who was guru, and now desired to hear from Shri Purnaprajna Tirtha Swami. Shri Madhva Vijay 4.47-48 makes some very relevent points as to how Acyutapreksa saw the situation. Actually he was a humble Vaishnava despite his dress, and on seeing this young boy who was actually guru seated before him, he became completely free from envy and surrendered at Lord Vishnu's lotus feet. He enquired from Purnaprajna as to the proper understanding, the uttama gati, the ultimate goal of life.
Purnaprajna at every spare moment studied the Shrimad Bhagavatam (Maha Bhagavat Purana) with great relish. This Purana made it's appearance just after the disappearance of Lord Krishna from this world, and is full of transcendental subject matters about the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Shri Krishna, written down by the literary incarnation of Godhead Shrila Krishna Dwaipayana Vyasa in his maturity. This illuminated scripture, which is the cream of all Vedic literatures, completely eclipses all lesser scriptures.
Once, whilst nearby Acyutapreksa, Purnaprajna Tirtha happened to hear five or six brahmins reading and discussing Shrimad Bhagavatam. He noticed that what they were saying didn't follow what Vedavyasa's conclusions were, so humbly but forcefully, he decided to rid the all pure Shrimad Bhagavatam of their speculations and concoctions and firmly re-establish the original understanding as laid down by Shrila Vyasadeva. Acyutapreksa said to Purnaprajna, "If you know Vedavyasa's methodology, let the prose in the Fifth Canto of this Bhagavatam be read and explained by you." Purnaprajna then wonderfully explained the Fifth Canto according tot Vedavyasa's exact method, reeling off text after text, chapter after chapter, as if he had written the book. Every word and phrase was accurate just as Shrila Vyasadeva had written it in the original text. The brahmins studied what Purnaprajna was saying, trying to find some fault, but Purnaprajna, like the Bhagavatam, was spotless.
One thing bothered everyone, including Acyutapreksa "the guru" how did this young boy know all this? Not only did he know grammer and philosophy, but he knew all the conclusions of all the scriptures, and knew perfectly well the pure untainted conclusions of Vedavyasa, the Personality of Godhead.
Acyutapreksa addressed Purnaprajna as follows: "O victorious one! How does that which was not read by you in this birth come to you?" Purnaprajna's humble reply was that "All of this I knew from my previous births."
Thus the fame of Purnaprajna Tirtha Swami spread far and near. No-one could fully understand who he was, nor would he reveal himself fully. Everyone loved him so much that their minds would not leave thought of his activities and speech for a moment.
Madhva Vijay 4.54 says that like the brightness of the sun that destroys all darkness of ignorance in all directions, and like the cooling rays of moonlight, he was bringing solace to the devotees of the Supreme Personality of Godhead Lord Krishna. Such devotees are compared to happy clusters of blue lotuses.
PREACHING SRIMAD BHAGAVATAM:
Some time after Purnaprajna's initiation into the sannyasa order, being renowned as a great Vaishnava exponant and having been firmly established, this Purnaprajna Tirtha (Madhva) was in great acclaim by the people in general. They had seen him firmly defeat even Acyutapreksa, and now he was boldly preaching from the Shrimad Bhagavatam. Acyutapreksa showed by his own actions that he himself was actually a great Vaishnava, and indeed a humble follower of Purnaprajna Tirtha. His attitude towards his disciple is not really explicable without due appreciation of the way the great Mukhyaprana carried out his pastimes on this earth. Being instructed correctly by this plenary portion of the empowered Vayudeva, Acyutapreksa was completely pure and non-envious, in fact loved Purnaprajna. Day by day Purnaprajna Tirtha revealed his good qualities more and more, and more and more Acyutapreksa became attached to his wonderful disciple who was becoming famous for his pure renditions.
By now, Purnaprajna Tirtha's unwritten commentary on the Shrimad Bhagavatam was developing according to his bold philosophy, as daily he lectured to large crowds. Embellished by the well wishes of Acyutapreksa and encouraged by the ever eager crowd, like hungry swans they accepted the new understanding in a pure Vaisnavite way, and rejected any previous misconceptions.
srnvatam sva kathah krishnah
hrdy antah stho hy abhadrani
vidhunoti suhrt satam
"Shri Krishna the Personality of Goead, Who is the Paramatma (Supersoul) in everyone's heart and the benefactor of the truthful devotee, cleanses desire for material enjoyment from the heart of the devotee who has developed the urge to heat His messages, which are in themselves virtuous when properly heard and chanted."
This is also the qualities of Vaishnava guru to eradicate the miscinceptions which have been collected due to mental speculation, jnana, or one's particular sensual taste based around fruitive material desire.
nityam bhagavata sevaya
bhagavaty uttama sloke
bhaktir bhavati naisthiki
"By regularly hearing the Shrimad Bhagavatam and by rendering of service to the pure devotee, all that is troublesome to the heart is almost completely destroyed, and the loving service unot the Personality of Godhead, Who is praised with transcendental hymns, is established as an irrevocable fact."
tada rajas tamo bhavah
kama lobhadayas ca ye
ceta etair anaviddham
sthitam sattve prasidati
"As soon as irrevocable loving service is established in the heart, the effects of nature's modes of passion and ignorance, such as lust, desire, and hankering, disappear from the heart. Then the devotee is established in goodness, and he becomes completely happy."
evam prasanna manaso
bhagavad bhakti yogatah
bhagavat tattva vijnanam
mukta sangasya jayate
"Thus established in the mode of unalloyed goodness the man whose mind has been enlivened by contact with devotional service to the Lord gains positive scientific knowledge of the Personality of Godhead in the stage of liberation from all material association."
bhidyate hrdaya granthis
chidyante sarva samsayah
ksiyante casya karmani
"Thus the knot in the heart is pierced, and all misgivings are cut to pieces. The chain of fruitive actions is terminated when one sees the self as the master and not a sensual slave."
ato vai kavayo nityam
bhaktim paramaya muda
"Certainly, therefore, since time immemorial, all transcendentalists have been rendering devotional service to Lord Krishna, the Personality of Godhead, with great delight, because such devotional service is enlivening to the self."
uttama sloka caritam
cakara bhagavan rsih
dhanyam svasty-ayanam mahat
"This Shrimad Bhagavatam is the literary incarnation of God, and it is compiled by Shrila Vyasadeva, the incarnation of Godhead. It is meant for the ultimate food of all people, and it is all successful, all blissful and all perfect."
dharma jnanadibhih saha
kalau nasta-drsam esa
"This Bhagavat Purana is as brilliant as the sun, and it has arisen just after the departure of Lord Krishna to His own abode, accompanied by religion, knowledge, etc. Persons who have lost their vision due to the dense darkness of ignorance in the age of Kali shall get light from this Purana."
And so the great son of Vayu preached this great science of bhakti yoga to all the fortunate souls who came there. Everyone flocked far and near to hear this full transcendental message of Shrimad Bhagavatam now being placed in the embodiment of the Bhagavatam.
Shrila AC Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada explains in his purport to Shrimad Bhagavatam 1.2.18, "..... that there are two types of Bhagavatas, namely the book Bhagavata and the devotee Bhagavata. Both the Bhagavatas are competent remedies, and both of them or either of them can be good enough to eliminate the obstacles. A devotee Bhagavata is as good as the book Bhagavata because the devotee Bhagavata leads his life in terms of the book Bhagavata and the book Bhagavata is full of information about the Personality of Godhead and his pure devotees, who are also Bhagavatas. Bhagavata book and person are identical.
"The devotee Bhagavata is a direct representative of Bhagavan, the Personality of Godhead. So by pleasing the devotee Bhagavata one can receive the benefit of the book Bhagavat. Human reason fails to understand how by serving the devotee Bhagavata or the book Bhagavata one gets gradual promotion on the path of devotion. But actually these are facts explained by Shrila naradadeva, who happened to be a maidservant's son in his previous life. The maidservant was engaged in the menial service of the sages, and thus he also came into contact with them. And simply by associating with them and accepting the remnants of foodstuffs left by the sages, the son of the maidservant got the chance to become the great devotee and personality Shrila Naradadeva. These are the miraculous effects of the association of Bhagavatas. And to understand these effects practically, it should be noted that by such sincere association of Bhagavatas one is sure to receive transcendental knowledge very easily, with the result that one becomes fixed in the devotional service of the Lord. The more progress is made in devotional service under the guidence of the Bhagavatas, the more one becomes fixed in the transcendental loving service of the Lord. The messages of the book Bhagavata, therefore, have to be received from the devotee Bhagavata, and the combination of these two Bhagavatas will help the neophyte devotee to make progress on and on."
The book Bhagavatam itself goes on to say in SB 1.1.3:
nigama kalpa taror galitam phalam
suka mukhad amrta drava samyutam
pibata bhagavatam rasam alayam
muhur aho rasika bhuvi bhavukah
"O expert and thoughful men, relish Shrimad Bhagavatam, the mature fruit of the desire tree of Vedic literatures. It emanated from the lips of Shri Sukadeva Goswami. Therefore this fruit has become even more tasteful, although it's nectarean juice was already relishable for all, including liberated souls."
Bhagavata paragiya bhagavata sthani - one should understand Shrimad Bhagavatm from the devotee Bhagavat who has realised Bhagavatam.
In the Shrimad Bhagavatam the transcendental patimes of the Lord are narrated, and the narration is systematically depicted by Shrila Sukadeva Goswami. Thus the subject matter is appealing to all classes of persons, including those who seek liberation and those who seek to become one with the supreme whole. In Sanskrit the parrot is also known as Suka. When a ripened fruit is cut by the red beaks of such birds, it's sweet flavour is enhanced. The Vedic fruit which is mature and ripe in knowledge is spoken through the lips of Sukadeva Goswami, who is compared to the parrot, not for his ability to recite the Bhagavatam exactly as he heard it from his learned father, but for his ability to present the work in a manner that woud appeal to all classes of men.
In the same way, Purnaprajna Tirtha, the empowered devotee of Lord Vishnu, preached to all classes of men purely from the Bhagavatam, and so doing, changed their hearts. Thus he was given the title "Bhagavatpada" by those who could understand that he was the Bhagavatam personified as previously explained.
Acyutapreksa, seeing his glorious disciple preaching so nicely, resolved that actually Purnaprajna should take to the Vedanta Pitha as the Yuvaraja or heir apparent on the Pontificial seat. Preparations were made and Purnaprajna was formally installed as the Pontif, and was given the new name of Anandatirtha. The formal installation was done in much the same way one would install the Deity in the temple, with purified articles, and bathing with sanctified waters poured from conch shells.
ANANDATIRTHA TAKES ON AND DEFEATS ALL COMERS:
Acyutapreksa was always respected for his great learning by all scholars and devotees alike. One incident came about to depict how Acyutapreksa felt about his disciple now known as Anandatirtha.
A sadhu friend of Acyutapreksa came accompanied by many disciples to debate with the learned Acyutapreksa. They were well trained in Nyaya (logic) and a little proud of their learning. Acyutapreksa told them that he had stepped down from the pitha or sea and that now they should debate with his disciple Anandatirtha, who was most qualified for discussion on any subject they may choose.
The challengers choose their own subject in which they specialized. It is said that Nyaya or logic, Vaisesika, that of argument, and that of sankhya or deduction are the philosophies that uphold Anumana or inference as an authority. Though inference doesn't really supercede pratyaksa or perception or that of sabda (sruti-vedas) - testimony of the sastra in any way is nontheless accepted as philosophy by which one may understand things as they are.
In the discussion that followed, Anandatirtha argued that if inference did not rest on perception or on testimony as it's final basis, speculations of all kinds could be made by one's own limited sensual perception based on guess work or inductive thinking. The tiny conditioned soul, being clad with four defects, doesn't always understand things as they are as we have imperfect senses, the propensity to cheat, and to become illusioned and to make mistakes. Every stance the challengers tried to make, Madhvacaya (Anandatirtha), who is full in all divisions of knowledge of the Absolute, proved his pure points against their false controversy. One of Anandatirtha's arguments went like this:
"If we choose not to recognise the authority of sensual experience, and if we set aside the testimony of speech, writings, and revelations, pure unaided reasoning cannot establish any subject as an absolute truth whatsoever, for every argument implies that it lends itself to some kind of sense experience, either that of the arguer or that of an authority, be he a spiritual teacher or the Lord Himself or that of the sastra (scripture) written by one of the same."
In this way, the challenging party tried to argue this way and that, desperately trying to establish their theories about the tiny jiva soul and the Supersoul (Paramatma), but Anandatirtha firmly established that the tiny jiva soul is easily seen as being different from the supersoul in as much as the jiva is controlled and the supersoul is the controller, like the king and his servant.
The tiny jiva has some freedom to act, but even that freedom is witnessed by the supersoul. He may, with the permission of the controller, use his alloted part of this material world, just as the servant of the King resides at the palace and is well kept, but if the servant tries to usurp the property of the king as his own, then he is punished. This is the swarupabheda principal.
They tried to introduce another controversy that the sky is false because you cannot touch it like silver which is relfected in an oyster shell. But Anandatirtha stated that it is not that they are false for one has that experience of seeing silver in a pearl, and it is a fact that the sky does exist, but they are not seen by the eye in a regular way. Anandatirtha stated the philosophy of abhinava-anyatha khyati-vada in a new way. If a thing is to be seen, then there should be some contact with the eye of the seer and the object. But as there is no direct contact between the eye and the silver in a pearl or the eye and the sky, it can be said that it is not seem, as the observasion does not occur.
And so they argue back and forth, Anandatirtha always establishing the absolute truth as being personal and dispelling the arguments of illusion - Mayavada. At the end of these discussions they gave Anandatirtha the title "Anumana Tirtha" due to his complete understanding of the anumana (logic and argument).xxviii
THE DOWNFALL OF BUDDHISAGARA AND VADISIMHA
The next to come to challenge were Buddhisagara, a Buddhists who was a renown Bauddha - hater of the Vedas, who is the inflicter of defeat on those eminent scholars who are like elephants among men. Buddhisagara came to challenge Acyutapreksa along with the Jain (Tarkika) scholar of the name Vadisimha. Madhva Vijay explains how Acyutapreksa quickly defeated their attack by taking an arrow in the form of the great Ananda Tirtha from his quiver (his mutt). There it says how Anandatirtha, who has excellent intelligence and who is skilled in conquering any opponents, looked out over the large concourse of people who had come to listen to his debate. Umpires were appointed to decide philosophical issues as to who made the true points.
Vadisimha was first to lead the attack. His lead was that of eighteen alternative positions, trying to destroy Anandatirtha by his weighty arguments. Anandatirtha now only refuted each point, but he smashed the envious rascal Vadisimha who was so badly philosophically defeated with just a few quick and unbearable sentences. Vadisimha was impelled to show his real self, shouting loudly trying to present more arguments, but in a cool and dignified manner was the best of all Vaishnava philosophers. Powerful and controlled, Anandatirtha resembled Bhimasena in a fight. Anandatirtha dismembered Vadisimha's every word and Vadisimha fell silent. Everyone knew that this was his sign of his total defeat.
Buddhisagara, whose name means an ocean of intelligence, came forward next with pride to try to make his points against Anandatirtha. Coming in contact with him, he realized too quickly how he, Buddhisagara, had vastly over-estimated himself. With only a back hand slap of a sentence, Anandatirtha smashed the arrogant Buddhisagara, but then the cheating rascals, Vadisimha and Buddhisagara, addressed Anandatirtha and requested, "Let the disputation of philosophies take place tomorrow and today not be counted." The victorious Anandatirtha, the acarya, replied, "If you have something to discuss then discuss it now." but their reply was that it was evening and in an inauspicious muhurta, etc. They made so many excuses to appear undefeated, but all the people knew that they had met their match. The next morning Vadisimha and Buddhisagara's room was empty. In fear of their reputation they had run away overnight. It was plain to see that Anandatirtha had gained a wealth of reputation without any effort and to even a higher degree than by Buddhisagara and Vadisimha, who had earned theirs over a long time of wandering throughout Bharat Bhumi.
Now everyone was inpsired to hear from Anandatirtha. His attacks on the Mayavada philosophy of Sankaracarya's sararaka Sutra Bhasya were so powerful that it left Sankaracarya's work torn to shreds philosophically. Anandatirtha's constructive criticism of any philosophy which did not give full credit to the Supreme Personality of Godhead ended in the same way, after thorough exposure to Anandatirtha's sword-wielding philosophy. This was just what everyone had been praying for, and the people now urged him to tell everyone everywhere the detailed truths which had been hidden for so long, and to establish this "new" philosophy which would benefit all mankind.
Once when Anandatirtha was giving a commentary in the form of discourse on the Brahma Sutra Bhasya, he critisized particularly the Bhasya of Sankaracarya. With a derisive smile on his face, he forcefully progressed to fulfill the request and mission on the demigods who approached Lord Narayana on behalf of the suffering people in general for a pure philosophy. This commentary was like a river of flowing nectar for those assembled devotees intently listening. The learned pandits, who knew Sruti and Smriti, begged Anandatirtha to write his own commentary on the Brahma Sutra (Vedanta Sutra).
Just as one who has developed bad habits in connection with learning to play a musical instrument has to be retrained out of their bad habits before training of a purely positive nature can begin, so Anandatirtha's Brahma Sutra verbal commentary first kicks out all bogus philosophies that the people had acquired out of ignorance. It is actually quite a strange thing that they respected Sankaracarya's Bhasya in the first place.
ANANDATIRTHA IS NOW GIVEN THE TITLE OF ACARYA:
Whoever makes big propaganda in this fallen age of Kali will become recognized irrespective of qualities and qualification. The dog who barks the loudest becomes the leader of the pack. However this is not the case in Vaishnava society, in fact it is just the opposite. The humble devotee of the Lord commands respect. He does not demand respect. His boldness is not like that of the cunning dog, but that of the surrendered devotee. Being completely surrendered to the will of the Lord and only preaching so that everyone can come to know the Lord, Madhva became recognized as being materially unmotivated. Anandatirtha, now accepted as the acarya, became known as Madhvacarya.
Let us look at why Anandatirtha was given the name Madhvacarya. "Madhu" means nectar of pleasing thing, and "Ananda" means bliss or happiness, so when one looks at the content of the name, one can see that Madhu is a synonyn for Ananda, but specifically Madhvacarya means that teacher (Acarya) who gives the required happiness, nectar of bliss in the form of his urgently needed and prayed for philosophy, and his ever pleasing pastimes through which he taught his message to the devotees (nityasuris).
First he spoke his commentary. The way Madhvacarya's Brahma Sutra Bhasya was composed, it contained statements and meanings properly related to one another in an easily understandable fashion, and everyone could actually understand and realize who is the Persoanlity of Godhead and how everything is coming from Vasudeva (Krishna). vasudevam sarvam iti. This easily understandable Sutra was soundly based on the authority of the Smrtis in conjunction with the Vedas.
In Madhva Vijay 5.22 it mentions how Madhvacarya defeated all of the old schools. Some were highly intelligent due to their intense study of the sastras and they knew well all the laws of logic. Some were even free from envy and desirous of knowing Madhva's Sutra, while others however possessed envy and were desirous of just conquering Acarya Madhva.
Madhvacarya's now aged father, Madhyageha Bhatta, from time to time would come to visit his beloved son, the partial incarnation of Vayudeva, watching him with loving intent as the Acarya dismantled and re-assembled those who came to present their case. This learned brahmin would relish seeing the bodily form and lustre, the dynamic and yet sanguine form of the bull among men who took his birth in that best of brahmins' house. It is said that he drank with hollowed palms the nectar seen through his old eyes, that ocean of nectar Madhvacarya. Through the cavity of his ears he drank that pure sabda brahman - that transcendental sound vibration emanating from Madhvacarya's lotus mouth. Deep in his heart he remembered, how with love, he used to hold him in his arms as a child and play games with him, and recall all his ecstatic childhood partimes. His heart would melt and swim, almost drowning in absorbsion on his great son. Finally tears of love would wash away his vision of Madhvacarya.
ACYUTAPREKSA PREASURES MADHVA TO WRITE:
During one visit of Madhyageha Bhatta, Madhva Vijaya records a discussion between Madhvacarya and his sannyasa guru. Acyutapreksa made a profound statement for the purpose of getting his required result, knowing well that Madhvacarya could not, would not bear to hear any bogus statements of Mayavadi philosophy. "I have an objection." Madhvacarya interjected. Acyutapreksa said, "If you know the Brahmasutra, then compose it in the form of a written commentary."
Madhvacarya accepted this pure challenge just as the hamsa swan accepts only milk giving up the water mixed with it. Madhvacarya knew Acyutapreksa's heart, that it was not so much that he was challenging, but out of compasssion for all the soft-hearted Vaishnavas who are demigods on earth, he challenged to aid this great mission to satisfy and glorify the Supreme Personality of Godhead Lord Vishnu. Acyutapreksa went on to say, "If all the various Bhasyas, beginning with this Bhasya of Sankara are of an impersonal nature and thus opposed to the settled opinion of the great sages and rsis who know Brahmasutra, that's alright. Let it be. What harm can this do? Instead you please tell us the real and intended meaning of this pure Brahmasutra (Vedanta Sutra) and Upanisads."xxix
Some say it was the conditioning of Acyutapreksa that was saying that it's alright, that Sankara's Bhasya be of an impersonal nature. Madhva Vijay indicates however, in canto 5.29, that this best of ascetics was of the same swanlike nature as Madhvacarya, overlooking the insignificant effulgence of stars, and was only interested in the full moon which brightened up all directions in the form of Acarya Madhva. The Acarya, who in no doubt was seflf eminent, spread the glories of the personal form, attributes pastimes, etc of the uinlimited incanration of the Supreme Personality of Godhead as the full moon shines it's moonshine brightening the sky, or as a beautiful rain cloud pours it's merciful rains on everyone. No-one had to come forward to point out that the full moon was in the sky; all rascal-like philosophies were immediately exposed just as a thief is exposed on a full moon night.
ACARYA MADHVA PREACHES THROUGH SOUTHERN INDIA:
In Madhva Vijay it is mentioned that one day Madhvacaya, who is perfect in intellect, was desirous of preaching in the direction protected by the great Dikpalaka - Yamaraja (the south), knowing well that the pandits of these areas in the south followed various philosophies such as the Mayavada philosophy of Sankaracarya, the mystic yoga system of Patanjali, the Karma Mimamsa philosphy of Jaimini, Nyaya logic of Gautama Muni and the materialistic Sankya philosophy of Kapilasura. There were also Buddhists and those of mixed philosophies. Acyutapreksa didn't mind him going on this preaching tour, providing he could also go along, and so accompanying Madhva, they set out for Vishnumangala. According to Padmanabhacar's book "The Life and Teachings of Shri Madhvacarya" there is the following statement. "Authentic evidences fixes Vishnumangala as a village about twenty seven miles south of Mangalore."xxx Vishnumangala was always a favourite place of Madhva who opted to spend much time at the temple of Lord Vishnu there. The name Vishnumangalam is specifically given here due to this Deity being said to be the bestower of all auspiciousness to the world.
At Vishnumangalam, just as Madhva had finished an enormous meal of Vishnu prasadam, a local householder approached the acarya with alms of two hundred 'raja kela' plaintain fruits, and begged Madhvacarya to eat them. These bananas are one and a half feet in length and ten inches in circumference, but this plenary portion of Vayu, who had previously appeared as Vrikodara (Bhimasena) ate every single plaintain in a very casual manner, without the slightest exertion or heaviness to his body. Everyone was amazed, as most persons could maybe eat three of four at the most. They implored Madhvacarya to tell them the truth how this was possible. Madhvacarya answered very seriously with his mind fixed on Lord Hari, "Oh, the fire in my stomach is the size of my thumb, and is burning brightly. Therefore it is always ready to perform it's service for the body and digest anything. In fact, it could be compared to the fire at the time of the devastation of the universe, such is it's potency."
Madhva Vijay tells how Madhvacarya, Acyutapreksa and their party headed further south, crossing at the flag-staff near Vishnumangala and going down into Kerela. Criss-crossing over the many waterways in the area, they went on to the sacred Payasvini River which purifies the minds of those who bathe there. After coming to the river Payasvini, Madhvacarya approached the temple of Ananta Sayana Padmanabhaswami, Who is glorified as having a lustre like that of a blue lotus, and Who has a lotus flower in His navel, lying on Ananta Sesa with Laxmi Devi massaging His lotus feet, and Whose body is made of nearly 18,000 Saligrams.
In the town of Ananta, Madhvacarya delivered powerful lectures on the Brahma Sutra, specifically explaining the name, qualities and form of the infallible Lord Acyuta. His disciples and the local brahmins came to hear how the tiny conditioned soul is different from the mighty infallible Lord. The Mayavadis propose that there is only one living being, and one power of illusion (avidya) which covers that person, producing an illusory appearance of plurality. But this hypothesis leads to the absurd conclusion that when any one individual living being becomes liberated, everyone attains liberation. But how is that? If on the other hand there are many illusions (avidyas) which cover only some part of the living entity, then we would have to talk about his becoming partly liberated at a particular time while his other parts were in bondage. Thus the philosophical conclusion of difference (Dwaita - plurality or dualism) is the unavoidable conclusion.
To try to say that everything is the same was just the kind of fuel that Madhva was looking for to fully propound his Vaishnava philosophy. Madhvacarya points out five kinds of differences.
(1) The difference between the tiny jiva and the infallible Lord. There is one verse from the Shrimad Bhagavatam (10.87.30) which substantiates the difference between the living entities and the Lord.
aparimita dhruvas tanu-bhrto yadi sarva-gatas
tarhi na sasyateti niyamo dhruva netaratha
ajani ca yan-mayam tad avimucya niyantr bhavet
samam anujanatam yad amatam mata-dustataya
"O Supreme Eternal! If the embodied living entities were eternal and all-pervading like You, then they would not be under Your control. But if the living entities are accepted as minute energies of Your Lorship, then they are at once subject to Your supreme control. Therefore real liberation entails surrender by the living entities to Your control, and that surrender will make them happy. In that constitutional position only can they be controllers. therefore, men with limited knowledge who advocate the monistic theory that God and the living entities are equal in all respects are actually guided by a faulty and polluted opinion."
Shripad Madhvacarya's point is driven home with the verse from Shrimad Bhagavatam 3.28.41
pradhaaj jiva samjnitat
atma tatha prthag drasta
bhagavan brahma samjnitah
"the Supreme Personality of Godhead,who is known as param brahma,is the seer.He is different from the jiva soul,or individual living entity,who is combined with the senses,the five elements and consciousness."
(2) The difference between the Lord and matter how the Lord is completely original and spiritual, and matter is a temporary manifestation of the Lord's external potency or energy, which is always changing and is put into motion merely by the glance of the Lord. (3) The difference between individuals, that definitely I am not you and by feeding you I am not full, nor by dressing you am I clothed. (4) The difference between the tiny living entities and the material energy. He explained how the marginal living entity is purely a spiritual entity, but due to misidentification with this material body, which is made of combinations of earth, water, fire, air, ether, mind, intelligence and false ego, he can be temporarily bound by illusion. Dull matter, which is constantly changing, does not go with the purified soul (entity) upon leaving this body. As they say, earth to earth and ashes to ashes. The body may be eaten by worms or by vultures, or burned to ashes and again return to it's material elements, but the eternal spirit soul, which is different by nature, leaves that place and either takes birth again in the material world to wear another body tailor made to fit his particular mentality, or go to the place where Lord Shri Krishna resides (the living entities' natural abode). Here we can clearly see that the living entity is of the superior nature or energy of the Lord while the inferior energy is matter. The cosmic manifestation comprised of material elements has no power to act unless it is moved by a superior energy which is the living entity. (5) The fifth is the difference between different kinds of matter. This can be seen in an example of a tree in the forest and a tree in the fire; the basic elements that go to make up a tree are the same, but by the adding of another element, fire, a different reaction takes place. One can appreciate that in earth the element of aroma is present; in water taste is present; in fire form is present; in air touch is present; and in ether sound is present. So again differences are there. More examples - the original fire, it's flame, it's sparks and it's smoke are all one (fire), yet as fire is still fire but is different from flame, so the flame is different in quantity from the sparks, and sparks are different from smoke. Yet in everyone of them fire is still present, but each and every one of them are differently situated with different attributes or qualities of fire.
Shrimad Bhagavatam 3.28.40 supports this statement:
dhumad vapi sva sambhavat
yathagnih prthag ulmukat
"the blazing fire is different from the flames,from the sparks,and from the smoke,although all are intimately connected because they are born from the same blazing wood."
So every one of these five differences that have been cited, namely the material nature, the cosmic manifestation, the living entities and the individual natures of each are all but different energies of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.
All throughout South India Madhvacarya opened everyone's eyes with his philosophy of Dwaitavada. To depict Madhva's concept of difference, he says, "That there is a concept, a visesa, which gives substance and attributes showing distinctions and similarities to an object, whilst still having it's separate existance." For example, a statement can be made. "The pot is white." The "pot" and "white", however, cannot be necessarily taken to always be the same, for the pot is something more than it's whiteness. If one were asked to fetch a white thing, one may not necessarily bring the pot, for there may be other white objects - some may or may not be pots; all white things are not pots. One could say bring that pot there next to the ... not mentioning it's attribute of colour, or a blind man may be asked to bring the pot. then what? Definitely it is not all one, for separate identity can be found in both the pot and in white objects. Therefore identity and difference is outlined with the concept of visesas or forms. Different words are given to different forms with different attributes by different persons at different times in different places. Then how can it be adwaita, or one? Difference is there, so we have dwaita.
In this system of Dwaita, by the definitive terms, one can see quite easily how the potency of a given thing determines the "non-synonymous" nature of anything, but at the same time giving some synonymous attributes, such as the jiva is spiritual by nature being qualitatively synonymous with the nature of the Supreme Lord, but the attributes in quantity to which the tiny jiva soul possesses characteristics such as fame, beauty, wealth, knoweldge, etc are quite miniscule.
In this way, Madhvacaya presented the authorized view of Brahma Sutra to the assembly. he also invited pandits seated there, who were maybe not convinced or of a different philosophy, to reply to his statements. Even he requested his disciples to take a false stand and present a particular philosophy so the pure dwaita vedantist philosophy could be preached. defeatibg the impersonal treatise of Sankara who took his birth at Kalady just nearby, Madhvacarya stood firm, powerful and undefeated by anyone. With a kind and gentle smile he preached and preached his new composition of Brahma Sutra Bhasya.
During the tour in the extreme south, Madhvacarya visited many places, including one place in the Anamalai Hills in the district of Udamalpet. On one side of a mountain, which stretches as far as the eye can see, flows a river parallel to the mountain. The bed of the river is made of solid rock and not a grain of sandstone or mud settles there, and so the water is crystal clear. Opposite to this place stands the ancient temple of the Gunavataras (Vishnu, Siva and Brahma). In the river there is a formation of boulders with a flat one on top, making a natural bridge by which the current of the river flows undisturbed under the flat stone and around the three boulders. The flat stone is big enough to seat one hundred men comfortably and is solid. Madhva, on his tour through this area, used to sit on this rock in the river and think of his mission after bathing in the river. The local people of the area were so taken back by Madhvacarya that they had a Deity made of him, which is still there to this day.
MADHVACARYA MEETS VIDYA SANKARA OF SRINGERI:
After Madhvacarya's visit to the Padmanabha Swami temple in Trivandrum, he found himself face to face with his arch enemies' descendent, the followers of Sankaracarya from Shringeri, Sankara's headquarters who were touring in the same areas at the same time as Madhva. It is not that the Vaishnava has enemies or really hold enmity to anyone, but still, those who wantonly blaspheme the eternal, factual, blissful, bodily form of the Lord, the Vaishnava is not pleased to see. In their meeting, Madhvacarya dismantled the poor philosophy coming from the mouth of the elderly Vidya Sankara. He didn't stop for even a moment, and when the Sankarite monist was bitterly defeated, he tried to criticise Madhva. Philosophically he had no hope, so he and his followers tried to say that Madhva was too fat, though every honest soul could see his body marked with all thirty two auspicious signs. One could easily see that due to being soundly defeated by Madhva in philosophy, Vidya Sankara had taken to the boldily concept of life trying to find fault. In due course, Madhva and Vidya Sankara left Trivandrum heading south, but did not meet again until the Caturmasya was about to begin. Madhva, as a staunch sannyasi, decided to observe the vows of the four months of the rainy season in Ramesvaram. Vidya Sankara had also taken to this idea, and so after thier individual tours, which took them to Ananta Sayana, Kanya Kumari and to just outside Ramesvaram, they took their baths there at the place where the bridge was built for Lord Rama to cross to Lanka. From there they went to Dhanuskodi, and on to Ramesvaram for Caturmasya.
They met, and immediately Madhvacarya attacked the impersonalist Vidya Sankara. Madhvacarya made his challenge and stated that if Vidya Sankara was successful in argument and defeat him, then he would give him his danda to break into pieces. Thus was Madhva's confidence. Madhvacarya said, "Oh highly angry one (oh stupid one). If this staff (danda) is not broken by you in sound discussion, then you are a liar and a eunuch."xxxi Vidya Sankara bent his head is shame, then in a sly, selfish way, asked the brahmins there to bless him to break the danda of Madhvacarya. The brahmins replied in a voly, that who could hate Madhvacarya. Just his moonlike face pleases the entire world and the words that come from his lotus mouth are the source of our inspiration. In the discssions that followed, the shining genius Madhva conquered all the arguments of the Mayavadis.
This Vidya Sankara was a sore loser, he would constantly send his men to inconvenience Madhva's party, like some kind of physical guorrilla warfare of petty harrassment. Actually this further re-inforced the defeat of the inadequate advaitin so much so that, being smashed, they now resorted to the bodily concept of life. They were not even humble enough to conceed defeat, instead they tried to arrange that shopkeepers would not give supplies to Madhvacarya and his party, and many other inconveniences, stealing provisions etc. This is the unfortunate nature of Kali Yuga, but Madhva remained, as usual, quite above the pettiness that the Mayavadis tried to harrass his party with.
After the Caturmasya had finished, the lion among men (Madhva), who had resided in his homely den (Ramesvaram) unpeturbed by the pranks of homeless street dogs in the form of the Sankarites, left to go to Shri Rangam,xxxii passing through all the sacred tirthas such as Tanjore, Syali and Chidambaram, and his followers increased by the day.
One day, the all compassionate acarya took his mercy on a pregnant woman who was in need of water, as was her whole village. He manifested an abundence of cool fresh water by the aid of his danda. In fact, Madhvacarya struck his danda into the ground and from that place an abundence of water came. That Danda Tirtha to this day always gives the best, purest drinking water.
Finally he reached the seat of Vaishnava learning at that time, and he discussed vigourously with the descendents of Ramanujacarya, the Vaishnava saint of the eleventh century. Taking darsan of the many Deities of the Shri Rangam temple, Madhvacarya, not being disrespectful to the devas, but focussed his time on Lord Ranganatha, Narayana.
From there Madhvacarya visited Chandragiri on the banks of the Payaswini River. At this temple masses of pandits came, learned in all six limbs of the Vedas, such as siksa - instructions on spiritual matters, vyakarana - grammer, chhandas - the proper recitation of mantram, nirukta - root meaning of words, jyotisa - astrology, and kalpa - the study of the method of sacrifices (kalpa sutra - mimamsa sutra). These pandits were all so enthused to hear that such a great personality had come, that they started to observe him closely. Though Madhvacarya was dressed as a simple sannyasi renunciate without ornamentation, he was the ornament that all had come to see. With gentlemanly demenour, gentle smile, lotus like eyes, gold like complexion, and speaking only the sacred words of the Bhagavatam, everyone was taken back by him.
Madhva Vijay 5.52 mentions that Madhvacarya stood out like a beaming sun, diminishing the brightness of all the learned pandits that had come to see him as stars in the daylight. In the places where ill-logic or mental speculation was stored, like a lion he roared, chasing away the elephants of ficticious and mundane philosophies. Yet for those who were innocent he had the form of lilies in a pond; he was as pleasing as moonlight.
EXPLANATIONS OF VISNUSAHASRA NAMA:
Another incident is recorded whereby, in a small temple on the banks of the Payasvini River, Madhvacarya was challenged by an eminent pandit of the time. The pandit said to Madhvacarya that he and the crowd that had gathered there wanted to hear Madhvacarya recite certain hymns of the Aitareya Upanisad. Madhvacarya recited those mantras perfectly, with the proper pronunciation, clarity of each letter, and with absence of speed. It is said he recited them exactly how one would want to appreciate sound of the mantras. Hearing this wonderful recitation, all those assembled were quite taken aback, but those pandits who had challenged and who were envious of Madhvacarya, gave a different rendition and meaning to the mantras.
Madhvacarya very quickly proceeded to put things straight. He pointed out to the envious pandits how, in the Vedas, every word has three meanings, in the Mahabharata there are ten meanings to every word, and in the Vishnusahasra Nama there are one hundred different meanigs for each word. Therefore, although they said that their rendition of the mantra was right, what he said was also right. The pandits, trying to humiliate Madhvacarya, attacked again, demanding to hear all the one hundred meanings of the Vishnusahasra Nama, doubting the acarya's potency.
In Madhva Vijay 6.6. Madhvacarya is recorded to have said, "I shall now recite to you all the one hundred meanings. You please repeat them after me with clarity." Madhvacarya then started, with pure mind and intent, free from anger, envy or vindictiveness, to give each to each word accurate meanings, determined in the Upanisads. Following the rules of Vyakarana (grammer), the acarya elaborated on the first word in the Vishnusahasra Nama, Visva, the root of the word being vis and the suffix kva, so (1) Visva means Vishnu, because it is He who has enetered wach universe, (2) because Lord Vishnu has pervaded everywhere in the form of knowledge, (3) because He is carried by Garuda, (4) Lord Vishnu is perfect in all respects, (5) Lord Vishnu activates Vayu, being the all-knowing supersoul and resort of the devas. Like this, Madhvacarya went on explaining the meaning of each word. He explained all the grammatical intricacies to such a degree that the so-called pandits could not follow what Madhva said, though they were learned in the Upanisads, Mahabharata, etc. (Sruiti, smrti). Therefore they are compared to unfortunate wells, that for some reason, even at the time of dissolution when the whole universe fills with water, they could not contain the abundance of water.
Bewildered and humbled, the "pandits" begged for forgiveness. Addressing Madhvacarya in a humble mood they said, "Oh omniscient Madhvacarya, your learning and understanding of the spiritual name, form and qualities of the Lord are not even matched by the hosts of demigods. Surely you are empowered by the Lord. We fickle-minded humans have surely offended you. Please forgive us, and give us shelter at your lotus feet." Thus they surrendered to Madhvacarya on the spot.
MADHVA DEFEATS THE PANDITS OF KERALA:
At Chandragiri on the banks of the Payasvini, a large gathering of the most learned brahmins from sixty three different villages in Kerala joined together to discuss with Shripad Madhvacarya. It seemed as if the Kerala brahmins were trying to make some kind of last stand against the foreign acarya from neighbouring Karnataka. The Kerala brahmin's leaders were actually quite fearful of Madhvacarya, thinking that if Madhva were to defeat any of their pandits in debate, it would put a slur on their country. Therefore they had all joined together as one body to defend the fame and glory of Kerala.
They questioned Madhvacarya from different Vedic points, such as Rg Veda. In the Rg Veda 10.117.1 the verse praises those good souls who give in charity to those who are deserving of such charity. "Venket the beggar is glorifying the grain donation, 'We are hungry so we are asking for charity. It is said that not only humans but also demigods can die through hunger. So by giving charity all living entities will benefit, so definitely one should give. And while asking one should not loose heart, for without asking one will not receive charity or be happy.'" (This verse also ridicules those who do not give in charity, for if one does not give, how can one hope in the future to receive charity of be happy by accumulated punya (pious results).
Madhvacarya then gave the root meanings to some of the main word and points in this hymn from the Rg Veda. Givning "priniyat" as an example, Madhvacarya said that the root word in "prina prinane." He then ridiculed the brahmin who he was discussing with who said that the root of "priniyat" was "free." Madhvacarya told him, "O dullard, I thought you were an educated man, a pandit, but it appears that you don't know the differences between "pra, pri and pree."xxxiii You should again undergo the Vidyarambha ceremony and go back to school, then under the guidance of a teacher you can practice your letters and vowels by drawing in this dust." Then Madhvacarya laughed heartily. For the proud Keralan pandits this was too much, and were taken back by Madhva's bold critisism, but out of respect they still honoured him, even though they were a little inimical due to being on the bodily platform of life, thinking that they were Kerala brahmins and that Madhvacarya was a Karnataka brahmin.
In another verse, again from the Rg Veda 8.91.7, it talks of Devendra's gift of lustre to the young body of a virgin girl, by whom Devendra was honoured. The Kerala brahmins had said that the word "apala' refered to the girl as being a leper, but Madhva said no, it means a young virgin girl. The arrogant Kerala brahmins obstinantly insisted that apala meant leper, but by this time Madhvacarya had had more than enough of the Kerala brahmins, and as he prepared to leave them festering in their false pride, he told them that seeing as they would not accept any facts from him, soon a very learned man will come to their country. He told them to ask him the meaning of the word. Then he left that place as one leaves the stool field after passing.
Soon after, just as Madhva had predicted, an unknown but very learned pandit arrived in the coutnry of Kerala. He also agreed that the world 'apala' in that verse refered to a young virgin girl and not to a leper. Realizing their misfortune that they had not taken advantage of the great acarya's presence and had enviously challenged Madhva, they lamented, "Oh how unfortunate we are. We were in the direct association of such a great soul, and yet he left due to our offensive challenging spirit. He was simply trying to open our eyes and was only here for such a short time. We were so much on the bodily concept of life that we missed out on receiving transcendental knowledge from such a pure devotee of the Lord."
It is a fact to to some degree they could appreciate who they had in front of them, but they had been covered by their own false egos. Due to being inimical towards the acarya, they made themselves almost unavailable to receive his mercy; instead they just debated over the root meanings of words. Not realizing that this great Vaishnava acarya was a pure representative of the Lord and was right there amongst them, they did not accept him as an authority, even though his learning in Veda could not be matched. Madhva Vijay 6.21 says that Madhvacarya knew all forms of sastra, sruti, the Puranas, Mahabharata, everything. He also knew Trikalajnan, the past, the present and the future.
The fame of Madhvacarya, by now, had spread by those devotees whose hearts had become softened by hearing of him. To those soft hearted Vaishnavas, who resemble pure white lotuses, the full moon in the form of the rays of his fame penetrated their hearts even in the countries, towns and villages that he had not yet visited.
Madhva then returned to Udupi and Lord Anantesvara, Who is situated on the western side of the town. It is said in Madhva Vijaya 2.14,
rajatapithapuri amaralayadvayam vartate
tatra purvalayasthah prathamato namyah
iti sampradaya niyamah
There are two temples in rajata Pitha (Udupi) (Vishvapati Tirtha), the eastern one and the western one. One must first pay one's respects to Lord Shiva (Chandramuleshwa) at the eastern temple and then go to Lord Anantesvara ( Anantasana) in the western temple. This is the tradition that everyone follows daily here. Madhvacarya did as is tradition, and relished the darshan of Chandramuleshwa and Anantesvara for some time.
MADHVA COMPARED TO BHIMA AND THE PURE SASTRA IS COMPARED TO DRAUPADI: Madhva Vijay 6.24-31
Madhvacarya, having seen that the Mayavadin followers of Sankaracarya propounded the misinterprested sastras, the Vedas, Upanishads, Brahma Sutra, etc. with Sankara's commentary of Advaitavada (monism), out of compassion and kindness he vowed to refute those impersonalistic commentaries and establish the true philosophy of dualism, just as Bhima vowed to kill Dussasana for his rascaldom.
The Vedas, when properly presented by an authorized seer such as Vedavyasa, the great sages and rsis - (the Lord Himself or His empowered devotees) - gives fruit, and that fruit is for the fortunate person who hears this pure sabda brahman; he will become spiritual enlivened. The transcendental pastimes of the Supreme Personality of Godhead are propounded in many different ways throughout the Vedas and it's auxilliaries. Even in the science of proper articulation and pronunciation, the science of prosody, grammer, etymological explanation of different roots in words, etc, astrology and astomony and ritualistic sacrifices and pujas, all are based on and around the Lord, with the purpose of invoking remembrance of the Lord and are decorated by the bright garland of gems in the form of Brahma Sutra (Vedanta Sutra) Bhasya.
Previously it is seen that Draupadi is kept under the protection of her husbands, the five Pandavas, who, being devotees of Lord Krishna, are from the best clan in Bharata Bhumi. She is allowed to remain chaste through this affliation. She is delicately beautiful and nicely decorated from her soft, fine, bright feet, serene walk and graceful movements. Her darkish complexion has given her the name Krishna, and she is completely devoted to Lord Shri Krishna. Just as her delicate qualities are ornaments to her gait, so the proper swara, pronounciation and metre, beautify the body of the Vedas. As Draupadi is kept from harm, so the Vedas are kept from harm from those who have not tried to satisfy guru and Krishna to gain access to the meaning of the Vedas and the sattvic Puranas. Being always chaste is the ultimate Vedic principle - chaste to guru, chaste to husband, chaste to Krishna. In this way the Vedic literatures can be recited purely, like Draupadi who is always keeping proper attire and is empowered with swara suddhi, clarity and melodious voice. Therefore she is compared to the Vedas.
In important yajnas, groups of the Vedas are recited for the pleasure of the Lord. Draupadi would help Dharmaraja (Yudhisthira) in such yajnas as the rajasurya, with her mind firmly fixed on Lord Krishna. She was genuinely recognized as the mother of devotion. But now, as Draupadi was humiliated in the assembly of Kauravas for their own twisted, wicked ways, and they tried to abuse her, the Vedic literatures had become, on the whole, misrepresented by Sankaracarya and his followers, and everyone was feeling unhappy at this kind of abuse. Due to the strong influence of this fallen age of Kali, even those who are pious souls, the innocent and even some Vaishnava devotees of the Lord, had become powerless and had to look on and see bogus philosophies be bounded around and established in a world full of cheats and the cheated.
Katha Upanisad 1.2.5 says,
avidyayam antare vartamanah
svayam dhirah panditam manyam anah
janghanyamanah pariyanti mudha
andhenaiva niyamana yathandhah
"Caught in the grip of ignorance, self proclaimed experts consider themselves learned authorities. They wander about this world befooled, like blind men leading the blind."
Due to the effects of Dharmaraja being cheated into a false challenge to bind the Pandavas hand and foot at the gambling match, with fixed dice, a Ksatriya's honour forced the most powerful of warriors to not act. Bhisma, Drona and others looked on but were helpless for one reason or another, and Vidura also looked on sorrowfully while the Pandavas were bound by their loyalty to King Yudhisthira, the Dharmaraja.
In the Vedas it is again and again propounded that Vasudeva is the Supreme Personality of Godhead - vasudevo va idamagra asit, is the bearer of the earth and it's rescuer in the form of Varahadeva - dadhartta pritvimabhitomayukhaih, and is the Lord of all - atmetyevopasita. To this Supreme Lord Vasudeva, Draupadi surrendered her very life and reputation, loudly calling out His Holy Name Vasudeva, Krishna, Dharanidhara, Natha, In pure intensity she had no other Lord or hope. With her mind fixed on Krishna like Prahlada and Gajendra, she became safe as a recipriant of the Lord's mercy.
In the same way it can be seen that those who had suffered so long, the devotees and the demigods, were now having their desires fulfilled by the Lord, for the Lord sent His empowered devotee to dismantle the illusions of Mayavada philosophy and give something to those who have been fooled by the Sunyavada philosophy of nothingness. Simply by presenting the philosophy of Vedavyasa, the literary incarnation of the Lord, which is free from all defects, Madhvacarya was successful, just like Draupadi was free from all defects by taking complete shelter of Yadavakrishna (Lord Shri Krishna, the friend of the Yadu dynasty). Madhvacarya had taken a vow to the same Lord Krishna to do away with the philosophy of impersonalism. In the same way he previously vowed, as Bhima, to rid this world of the likes of Duryodhana and Dussasana.
MADHVACARYA GOES TO BADRI:
Compiling his own commentary on Bhagavad-gita before his sannyasa guru Acyutapreksa, Madhva mentioned that now he wanted to go to Badri. Seven years before he had taken to the sannyasa order and had been constantly preaching throughout the south with enormous success. Acyutapreksa gave his premission to go, but before Madhvacarya's leaving, he had a copy of his "Hari Gita Bhasya" transcribed which he presented it to his dear sannyasa guru so he would not be in too much separation at such an old age. In Madhvacarya's long absence Acyutapreksa could study this Gita Bhasya. Acyutapreksa knew that Madhva's purpose was not that of a mere cow or an ass, just to go to this holy place and take bath. Taking his time preparing properly, Madhva headed north with his Bhagavad-gita Bhasya to show to the Lord, Shrila Vyasadeva.
Shrila Vyasdeva, the compiler of the Vedic literatures, still to this day resides at a place near Badri, Samyaprasa, for those spiritually elevated souls who he decides to reveal himself to. He can be seen, yet for others he cannot.xxxiv
The old ascetic Acyutapreksa gave his blessings upon Madhva and the small band of followers headed by Satyatirtha, who was completely faithful to Madhvacarya. He himself was too old to travel such vast distances but still his heart went out with the travelling party.
Madhva Vijay 6.36 points out that the great Madhvacarya, who is always in direct contact with the lotus feet of Lord Narayana, even made Lord Siva, the greatest Vaishnava, to be Madhva's subordinate, especially in as much as Lord Siva cannot himself give liberation. In fact, Lord Siva himself says, mukti-pradata sarvesam visnur eva na samsayah. "There is no doubt that Vishnu is the deliverer of liberation for everyone." However, Madhvacarya, his fame now spread everywhere for being one who removes illusion, sin and the like, has liberated many to become clear followers of Lord Vishnu. Madhva Vijay stresses the point that although Madhva was not subject to the mode of passion and did not hurry in a frenzy-like manner to Badri, he did not waste any time in going there. There is record of Madhva going to Kasi (Benares) at this time, though he didn't waste time in debating with the impersonalist pandits who stay there. His mission was to go to see Vedavyasa and present his Gita Bhasya, and to take darshan of the Lord of Badri.
After sending all the people away to not disturb his concentration, Madhvacarya absorbed himself for forty eight days in unbroken samadhi on Lord Narayana.xxxv Praying intently to receive the blessings of Shrila Vyasadeva and to bless his Bhagavad-gita Bhasya commentary, Madhvacarya was always in contact with his spiritual master Shrila Vyasadeva, though it was not always outwardly displayed. By the will of Shrila Vyasadeva Madhva had come to Badri, and now his business was to attract Vyasa's attention and instruction.
This whole area is sprinkled with the sacred waters of the Ganges (Bhagirathi) who makes her appearance in this world at Gaumukh - Gangotri and the surrounding glaciers. Joining these streams in the sacred Alakananda River.
Badrinatha temple is situated some 10,244 feet above sea level on the western bank of the Ganges (alakananda). The icy-cold Alakananda here, which is generally also called the Ganges, is made up of five streams all coming from neighbouring glaciers. They are the river Nanda, River Sarasvati, rishi Ganga, Kancana Ganga (Swarna Dhara) and Vasudhara.
Towering above the temple of Badri Narayana (Badrinatha) is Nara-Narayana parvats. These partvats or mountains are said to be the Rsis, Nara and Narayana, who changed themselves into mountains as they may stay by the side of Lord Badri-Narayana undisturbed. The transcendental brothers Nara-Narayana gave their parents a boon that they could also stay nearby, so Mata Murti and Dharma stay at Kesava Prayag near Vasudhara, five miles or so from Badrinatha, where Dharma meditated to get Nara-Narayana as his sons.
The temple itself is facing east and has a frontage about fifteen feet high, decorated nicely. The pillars of the entrance have the ten main avatars of Vishnu, besides decorative floral designs. Just inside the gate is Garuda, the carrier of Lord Narayana and the gate keepers of the door are Ganesh and Hanuman. The Saligram Sila of Badri-Narayana found on the altar was brought here by Sankaracarya from Narada Kunda and placed in the shade of Garuda.xxxvi The Deity of Badrinarayana is decorated with nice dresses, jewels, crows and flowers, and wears diamond tilak. To His left are the Deities of Nara-Narayana. Lord Narayana is seated in the padmasana, and Nara is standing in the dhanurasana. Keeping the unwanted effects of the Kali Yuga at bay is the Lord's Sudarsana Disc Yantra installed in silver. The eternal lamp called jyotir, which has been continuously burning from time immemorial, summer and winter, is just there in the inner sanctum.
In the sastras there are mentioned "Panca Badris" - five Badris/ (1) Badri Vishal is modern day Badri or Lower Badri where Madhvacarya spent forthy eight days in austerity and where Vyasadeva came to see him. (2) Yoga Badri is the place to where the Utsava Deities are brought in the winter time and worshipped by one brahmin and taken back up to Badri Vishal for the opeing of the temple when again Badri become accessible, that is, free from snow. During the winter time in Badri Vishal the demigods look after Lord Badri Narayana, and foodstuffs and puja articles are left there for the Devas to use for the Lord's worship. (3) Vruddha Badri - this temple is a halting/resting place for pilgrims where there are Deities of Lord Narayan. This is near Kumar Chatti. (4) Dhyana Badri - at Kalpeswar, five miles off the Kumar Chatti on the other side of the Alakananda river, is a temple of Lord Siva, where Lord Indra worshipped Lord Siva to obtain "kalpatam" or heavenly delights. Lord Siva, being the greatest Vaishnava, is generally approached first to take permission from him to approach the holy places of Lord Hari, as one does in most holy tirthas such as Vrindavan, Mayapura, Puri, Shri rangam, Udupi, etc. (5) Bhavishya Badri - Unfortunately this Badri has to exist, for in the Kali Yuga it is predicted that Vishal Badri will become no longer accessible to pilgrims, and that one will only to able to go to Bhavishya Badri and worship in separation the identical forms of the Lord represented here. The Lord in one place is definitely non-different to Himself in His original place, but at the same time the original place does exist. An example may be given from this modern day world, how a particular nation may have an embassy in another country, and in that host country the foreign embassy is still run according to the laws of the nation to which flag it flies. The guards on the gates are of that same nation, and not of the host nation, and all facilities inside the embassy fall in line with the culture and traditions of that foreign nation. Thus, though the foreign embassy may be at some distance from it's original place, still there is safety and refuge there, even though it is in a country of another. Bhavisya Badri is like that.
This Bhavishya Badri is about eight miles from Joshimutt on the Niti pass to Badrinatha. Bhavishya means future, so unfortunately this is the prediction for the future.
This Badri is not, however, the place to where Madhvacarya was to be going. Those pure devotees of the Lord, who are especially given the Lord's blessings, also have access to another Badri. This place exists on a transcendental plane and is not accessible to the common man, neither is it listed in the guide book, nor is it on any map. The great sages and rsis sing it's praises and Shripad Madhvacarya walked to that place. It is called Uttara Badri, or some call Samyaprasa, the eternal abode of Shrila Vyasadeva, and is a transcendental reality.
Again, using a mundane example which has some similarities, if one wants to see the King, it is not an easy process, as there are so many secretaries and private secretaries, guards, etc, which one has no alternative but to pass through. But when one obtains the favour of the king, and the king wants to see you, then practically nothing can stop him from coming to you - a base example, but fitting. So in the same way, when Shrila Vyasadeva wanted to see his pure disciple Madhvacarya, he came personally and invited him to come to his asrama.
Madhva Vijay 6.39-40 depicts how Madhvacarya, in intense devotion to the Lord, sent everyone to a distance. He then sat at the lotus feet of Nara Narayana Rsis, who, as Arjuna and Krishna, are the original hearer and chanter of Shrimad Bhagavad-gita. Madhva then recited his excellent Bhagavad-gita Bhasya for the Lord's pleasure. Madhvacarya said, "I will expound the Gita Bhasya according to my ability." The Lord replied plainly for even some close-by disciples to hear, "Even though you are capable of expressing the entire meaning of this Bhagavad-gita, knowing well the real meanings as it is, you have not expounded the Gita according to your ability. Therefore you should use this word 'slightly' or 'to some small degree' in place of 'according to my ability' at the end of this first introductory verse, for your ability has only been slightly flexed and not fully extended."
Madhva Vijay 6.41 says that while this conversation was going on between Madhvacarya and the Deity, even disciples who were nearby in their beds could hear the Deity of Lord Narayana jubilantly saying "Let it be said!" over and over again, and the Lord gently striking the ground in eager delight. Madhvacarya, being a partial expansion of Mukhyaprana (Lord Vayu), and having completely understood what the Deity said to him, went to his disciples and told them what was said by the Lord.
Madhvacarya then completed his stay at Badri for 48 days, undergoing Vaishnava Mauna, that is, abstaining from talking to anyone - only reciting his Bhagavad-gita Bhasya. Daily he would bathe just prior to sunrise, during the auspicious Brahma Muhurta hour, in the icy cold waters of the sacred Ganges.xxxvii During these 48 days, Madhva neither ate anything nor slept, but stayed awake constantly absorbed in thoughts of Lord Narayana, and his mission given by the Lord. One night however, an effulgent form came to Madhva seen by all, and prompted him to go to Uttara Badri, the asrama of Shrila Vyasadeva. The very next morning at sunrise Madhva wrote a note and gave it to his disciples. Madhva's mind was fixed on what he was to do. Shrila Vyasadeva had appeared to him in an extremely effulgent form and had told him to come to his asrama. To come alone was the instruction, so Madhva had to break it to his disciples. The note read, "Practically there is no other tirtha like Badri, which destroys all sins. There is no other water equal to this holy Ganges, and there is no other philosophy equal to ours. There is indeed no other Deity equal to Lord Vishnu. You all stay here, I am going to Uttara Badri, for I am desirious of seeing the literary incarnation of the Lord, Shrila Vyasadeva. That Veda-Vyasa only knows whether I will be coming back or not - may you all remain happy here until that time." After writing this, Madhvacarya then headed for Uttara Badri.
His disciple Satyatirtha read the note to the other disciples, that no-one should follow or try to go with the acarya. Satyatirtha had studied the Aitareyopanisad seen by the son of Itaridevi, Mahidasa under Madhvacarya, and was so attached to being with Madhva that he used all his learning to convince everyone that the acarya had said that no-one was to go with him as meaning no-one was to go with him except he. The devoted disciple Satyatirtha, who was prepared to give up his very life to be with the acarya, followed Madhvacarya, not being able to bear the separation.
As Madhva strode through the mountainous regions of the higher Himalayas, crossing passes and glaciers as if small paths, resembling Hanuman he bounded from peak to peak, quickly traversing the path to near Uttara Badri. Poor Satyatirtha could not keep up with his guru, even though running and climbing fast. He could see Madhvacarya jumping easily with speed from one large stone to another with large gaps between them. That great acarya, who resembles Anjanesya (Hanuman) who speeds through the mountains like Bhima, causing fear to the demons, did not stop for food or for rest.
The sun became red on the ice and snow, indicating that night was to set in, and for certain Satyatirtha would perish from exposure to the cold night air coming across the glaciers of the Himalayas, or the tigers and other wild animals would devour his body. In a fearful condition, in despiration he called out for the lord of his life, Madhvacarya. Madhva turned and gestured to Satyatirtha by the waving of his hand and arm to go back. Satyatirtha then felt an unusual gust of wind come and lift him up and carry the lowly destitute disciple back to the Ananda Mutt at Badri, where he told all the others there these glories of Shripad Madhvacarya's bounding undisturbed through endless uncrossable ranges of Himalayan peaks.
Madhva Vijay 6.55 describes Madhva as having the power of an angry bull. He has perfect knowledge of Krishna consciousness, great determination, is wide-eyed, and completely devoid of any fear as he passes through that of nature's biggest natural barrier. The Himalayas contain birds and beasts, big serpents that emit deadly poison, plus many groups of dangerous animals, but Madhva, having undeterable faith in the Lord, saw no obstacle or threat. Krishna states in Bhagavad-gita 10.25, "Of immovable things I am the Himalayas." The greatest mountains in the world represent Lord Krishna; even Mount Meru sometimes moves, but the Himalayas never moves. Therefore the Himalayas are superior to even Mount Meru.
Narayana Panditacarya has completed this seventh canto of Madhva Vijay with a copulate of two verses called 'Antya-Yugma'. These verses introduce one to the minature Vaikuntha realm, glorifying the killer of the Mura demon, Lord Murari, Krishna, Who is adorned with shining golden ornaments encrusted with the best of all kinds of previous gems. Madhvacarya remembered that same Lord lying down on Ananta Sesa, having His lotus feet embraced by the Goddess of Fortune, Laxmi devi, Who eternally remains with the Lord, smiling sweetly. This is the same Lord Vishnu Who, for the caturmasya (four months of the rainy season) takes rest, lying for two months on one side and then two months on the other side of His lotus body. He is Narayana, Who is also the localized Paramatma seated within the hearts of all His separated tiny living entities.
High in the Himalayan, beyond where any mere mortal can go, is to be found this Vaikuntha paradise. It is surrounded by ponds of full blown lotuses. The lotuses in these ponds are innumerable, nay unlimited, the most fragrant and indestructable. The sages and rsis who reside there make them into garlands for the Lord. Around these lakes are trees that constantly bear flowers, blossoming, sweet fragrant branches with fragrant flowers and fruits. These forest flowers adorn the captivating beauty of the Lord.
Madhvacarya could see all this from where he was standing looking to the north to the abode of Shrila Vyasadeva.
After his journey had neared it's end, and after crossing the Himalayas, Madhvacarya could see quite clearly the asrama of Vedavyasa surrounded by jujub trees. That place is definitely not of this world; the whole asrama was effulgent. Though up in the Himalayas, there was no biting cold or rain or snow. The trees and bushes there, which are way above the normal 'tree line', were none less than forests. As there was no unpleasant wind, rain or cold, also the sun was warm and comfortable. In the trees that touched the sky, innumerable beautiful birds nested and sung. Under those shade trees all the renowned brahmins, who were famous for performing huges sacrifices, sat, transfixed in meditation on the lotus feet of the Lord, Who resides in that place. In the surrounding areas, one could see pure white swans, whose necks entwined with the stems of blue, white and pink lotuses.
Madhva could recognize many great and famous Vaishnavas sitting around in the asrama of Shrila Vyasadeva. When those pure Vaishnavas saw Madhvacarya approach the asrama, they enquired as to who this saintly person was. "Marked with thirty two auspicious markings, lotus eyed, moon-like face, long arms and a golden complexion, no doubt this man enhances even Vaikuntha. There is no sign of exertion, and his face shows that his mind is fearless." "Is this person coming to this asrama in the guise of a sannyasi, the four faced Lord Brahma, or is it Mukhyaprana?"
Madhva walked quickly due to his intense devotion. Seated under a jujube tree was Shrila Vyasadeva. The jujube tree was a representation of Lord Ananta Sesa, with wide branches forming an umbrella which had jewels in the form of bright and fragrant flowers, and hoods in the form of branches. It exactly resembled Lord Ananta Sesa with His hoods encrusted with jewels jutting out in all directions forming branch-like hoods. The branches of this tree support the six sattvic Puranas, the Upanishads, and Mahabharata, and fruits that are sweet and full of nectar that drive away all known miseries like birth, death, old age and disease. These fruits cannot be obtained by those who are not devotees of the Supreme Persoanlity of Godhead, Lord Vishnu - Krishna and Their numerous forms.
Madhvacarya approached closely the sages, who, with matted locks of hair on their heads and various Vaishnava tilaks on their foreheads and bodies, sat with clean white sacred threads draped over their left shoulders. They had all transcended lust, anger, greed, false pride, the pushings of the senses, and thoughts of trying to enjoy in the material world separately from the supreme enjoyer, Shri Krishna. All natural opulence was there. Garlands and saffron coloured sandalwood paste was there on their bodies.
On a raised seat sat the preceptor of the three worlds, the son of Satyavati, Shrila Krishna Dwaipayana Veda Vyasa. Madhvacarya had always been meditating on the Lord of his life, his preceptor guru within his heart seated on a white lotus. Now, with brimming eyes, wonderstruck as though he had just seen him for the very first time, Madhva drank the nectar of the vision of Vyasadeva through his eyes.
Madhva Vijay 7.18-59 describes Vedavyasa as follows: Satyavati gave birth to that Vedavyasa after praying to Lord Brahma, and Vyasa was conceived by the sage Parasara. Shrila Vyasadeva, who has an ocean of wonderful attributes, is Lord Narayana Himself. Vyasadeva's mind is compared to the milk ocean and his qualities of compassion and respect are like the Mandara mountain. By his churning appeared three mothers who were the three Vedas - Rg, Yajur and Sama. By Vyasa the father and Veda the mother, the demoniac qualities of Kali Yuga are checked. From Vyasadeva the white rayed cooling moon of the Puranas and the parijata tree of the Mahabharata were given. Later, born from it's own nectar, appeared the Brahmasutras, and Shrimad Bhagavatam.
From the time of the Kuruksetra / Mahabharata war, during which Vyasa bestowed his blessings on the Pandavas, and even before this time, Vyasa walked this earth to protect knowledge of the Vedas, helping those devotees who have knowledge of that person who the Vedas are centered around. That is Lord Shri Krishna, Who is known as Vedanta Krt, the compiler of Vedanta, and Veda Vit, the knower of the Vedas. In Bhagavad-gita 10.37 Krishna Himself says, "Of sages I am Vyasa."
Vyasa, still living in Badrikasrama to this day for eternity with his pure devotees, it says, gave up this Kali Yuga for his Vaikuntha realm just as the sun gives up the sky for the coming of night.
Vyasa is seated on an excellent blackish Krishna deer skin Madhva recalls, as he prostrated himself at the lotus feet of Vyasa. Taking the dust from Vyasadeva's feet he placed the sacred dust upon his own head. Madhvacarya was in ecstacy, standing offering respects to Vyasa, the best of sages, whose feet are adorned with the marks of the flag, thunderbolt, boad for driving elephants, and lotus, they are naturally auspiciously tinged with red and have the repute to be red due to evaporating any material desires that may come to the minds of Vyasadeva's devotees.
The nails of those lotus feet gleam and remove darkness, both of an internal nature by their purifying association and rememberance, and externally by their bright lustre. If, by material comparison of age one would think that the old hands of the sage Vyasa would be knotted, no,they are smooth and soft, with long delicate fingers completely free from stress and diseases, such as knots coming from arthritis.
Vyasadeva's two kness, which are large, round and joined to his long shins, are free from fault. These legs of Vyasa, which are free from fault, account for a basis of good conduct even to those who are inferior in knowledge and devotion.
Shrila Vyasadeva's yoga-pattika waist band, aid his firm sitting posture. The lotus waist of Vyasa maintains and fulfills all the devotees, it is amazing that all the pure spiritual desires of the devotees are fulfilled by taking shelter at the waist of Vyasa. This waist is covered by a sacred Krishna deer skin, hiding his deep and delicate navel.
Vyasa's broad chest and broad mind support the pure white sacred thread, and Brahmsutras respectively.
Madhva Vijay 7.34 states that it has been well substantiated by Vedavyasa that caturmukha Brahma is the son of Garbhadaksayi Vishnu, being born from a lotus sprouting from the Lord's lotus navel. This world has no equal or superior in all the three worlds. Brahma gave his Kaustubhamani gem to Vedavyasa and that acts like a victory flag hanging around the neck of Vyasa.
The story in brief follows that once when Prajapati Brahma was in the associaion of Vedavyasa and one thousand sages, Shrila Vyasa made a statement saying that he would always prove the superiority of Vishnu Tattva at all times. The thousand sages took up the challenge and threw at Vedavyasa thousands of questions simultaneously. Vyasadeva answered each question one by one perfectly all at the same time. Amazed at the victory of the literary incarnation of Lord Vishnu, Brahma presented the Kaustubha gem to Shrila Vyasa.
In Shrila Vyasadeva's hands he holds a conchshell and a disc, his hands are again soft pinkish red, his arms are robust, round and powerful. There is no comparision to the broadness of these limbs.
By the tip of Vyasadeva's right hand he bestows divya jnana - transcendental knowledge to his devotees, and with the same tip of the same hand removes the darkness borne of ignorance simultaneously just like thunder and lightning. His left hand is placed on his knee. By this mudra all fear for the dangerous struggle for material existance is destroyed.
Vyasadeva's neck is marked with the three lines of a conchshell from which only sabda brahman or transcendental sound vibration, in the form of the main three Vedas and it's limbs, are coming.
Seeing his moon-like face is the sweetest benediction to the eyes. Actually the moon-like face of the best of sages is compared to groups of full moons, each being completely free form even the smallest blemish.
Shrila Vyasadeva's lotus mouth and teeth are compared to a new row of pearls which shine forth from inside of a perfect ruby. These pearl-like teeth are seen decorated by a gentle smile surrounded by soft ruby red lips.
To hear the speech of the literary incarnation of the Lord at once fills one's heart with transcendental knowledge, just as when the thousand wells in the form of sages became flooded with answers as the River Sarasvati replenishes the best of wells during the rainy season.
As Shrila Vyasadeva approached Madhvacarya with a smile on his face, his wide lotus eyes looked unblinking at him, and Vyasa embraced the powerful Madhvacarya and picked him up off the floor, clean as one would one's small son. The powerful partial expansion of Mukhyaprana who previously played the mighty Hanuman and Bhima, felt blessed as his guru, Shrila Vyasadeva, lovingly embraced him, and the sages smiled affectionately.
Madhvacarya prayed to his lord after seeing the sprig of tulasi leaf and manjari tucked behind the ear of Vyasa, "Please don't let me become jealous of this tulasi sprig and garland of lotus flowers that adorn your body. They are suprememly fortunate. Please don't let them rob me of my position of being so close to you. Wherever I am, always allow me to remain this close to you by always being absorbed in you."
Madhvacarya could now fully appreciate standing there in the shadow of his guru, that actually Shrila Vyasadeva was looking after the welfare of the entire world. Just by a movement of his eyebrows everything was taking place. The creation, maintenance and destruction of all the three worlds in fact is going on by his design. He is the same Vishnu Tattva Lord who maintains as Gunavataras along with Lord Brahma, the creator, who was born from a lotus, and Lord Siva, the destroyer of these material worlds. Coming in contact with the material mode of passion, Prajapati creates uder the direction of Lord Vishnu. Lord Vishnu Himself maintains the three worlds, the unlimited universes, in one form sleeping as Karanadaksayi Vishnu, in another form as Garbhadaksayi Vishnu lying down on His serpernt couch Anantasesa, and as the localised form of Paramatma seated within the region of the heart of every living being as the witness. effortlessly Lord Vishnu is the Supreme Enjoyer, and not a blade of grass moves without His knowing or sanction.
srsti-hetu yei murti prapance avatare
sei isvara murti 'avatara' nama dhare
mayatita paravyome savara avasthana
visve 'avatari' dhare 'avatara' nama
"The avatara of incarnation of Godhead, descends from the kingdom of God for material manifestations. And the particular form of the Personality of Godhead who so descends is called an incarnation, or avatara. Such incarnations are situated in the spiritual world, the kingdom of God. When they descend to the material creation, They assume the name avatara."
As such, there are various kinds of avataras, such as Purusavataras, Gunavataras, Lilavataras, Saktyavesa avataras, Manvantara-avataras and Yugavataras all appearing on schedule all over the universe.
eko devo nitya-lilanurakto bhakta vyapi hrdy antaratma
"The one Supreme Personality of Godhead is eternally engaged in many, many transcendental forms in relationship with His unalloyed devotees."
Madhvacarya again drank the nectar of seeing this Saktyavesa avatara of Lord Vishnu with a resplendant blue hue like that of the Indranila gem, personally before him, standing on a mountain resembling an emerald, lush and green, above the natural barrier of the Himalayas. Shrila Vyasadeva was wearing tilak of Urdhva Pundra on the twelve places of His body, which are glorfied throughout the Vedic literatures as being "Two straight lines of Lord Hari's abode are drawn at the root of the nose and reach to the top of the forehead, the space between which is Lord Vishnu's abode, and is more than a finger's breadth between and slightly wider at the top. Each of these two straight lines is only the thickness of a grain of rice and the breadth of four fingers. That is the abode or temple of Lord Vishnu. Sadaisiva and Brahma reside on either side of the central space and Laxmi stays with Narayan in the middle." Seeing this and the red mark made of the ash of plaintain flowers and turmeric mixed together resembling rubies, Madhva relished again and again the sight of Vyasa.
"My Lord, I am so much blessed by seeing You, Your red matted locks of hair and Your hue which resembles a new monsoon cloud, full of depth, with illumination like lightning. Oh my Lord, though I have recorded many of Your auspicious features and qualities, actually to describe You, though counting incessantly the endless good qualities that are eminating from even the nail of the little toe of Your lotus feet, such is my frustration.
"Though You are situated far beyond this material world and it's covering, by Your mercy You have allowed me to approach You. Completely transcending all known boundaries, You have appeared to me and allowed me to come here to take darshan of You, just to fulfill the plan chalked out by You. In obeisances, my body is bent in devotion to You. With folded hands I offer my humble prayers."
With His loving outstretched arms, Vedavyasa, the son of Parasara Muni, gently lifted Madhva up from his prostrated obeisances and again, with a smiling face, embraced him.
Madhva Vijay 7.53 notes that Vyasadeva and Madhvacarya - Vishnu and Vayu - are here compared with the powerful current of the sister of Yamaraja, Yamuna devi, whose mighty but gentle waters join the water of a golden river. The mighty waters of the Yamuna are compared to the dark blue lustre of Vedavyasa, while Madhvacarya is compared to a golden river who is being embraced by the dark blue waters of Vyasa. Previously these two great personalities embraced before. At that time they were dressed in royal clothing as Krishna and Bhimasena.
All the great sages in the assembly at Vyasadeva's asrama honoured Madhva with great respect. Vyasadeva gave Madhva a special seat of honour next to Himself and in a very warm way, the two saviours of degradation of Vaishnava philosophy started to speak of Madhvacarya's urgent mission. Shri Krishna Dwaipayana Vyasa and Madhvacarya discussed all kinds of Vedic literatures, Vedas, Mahabharata, the Sattvic Puranas, Brahma Sutras, and the Pancaratras, which are all very dear to Vaishnava.
Madhva Vijay 8.6 agrees that Lord Narayana Himself directed Madhva to come to the hermitage of Shrila Vyasa.xxxviii
Vedavyasa then took Madhvacarya to meet with the other form of the Lord residing there. Madhva Vijay 8.7 describes how the humble Purnaprajna (Madhva) saw Lord Narayan, the original person, dressed in tree bark with a munja grass belt. His effulgence that surround His beautiful matted locks is compared to being like the best of yajnic fires, pure, bright and free from smoke.
That Lord, Who is always Dhira (self controlled and sober), and Who is Atmarama (self satisfied), Who is Acyuta (infallable and free from the allurements of the sense objects), He is free from all defects, yet with all these opulences is happy to reside in the hermitage as a recluse and perform penance.
"O Adhoksaja Krishna, Who is unobtainable to those of demerit, now I stand before You. You are the same Lord of Brahma born of Your lotus navel. By Your potency of Abhimani You made the Mahatattva, inpregnated it by Your energy and placed there goodness, passion and ignorance. Along with this He created Rudra from Brahma and the tattva of Ahamkara which is threefold - the Vaikarika - Deities, the Taijasa - entities born of semen, and the tamasa - the five gross elements (earth, eater, fire, air and sky). From this He made the jagad anda, the cosmic egg in which reside the fourteen worlds.
"Lord Narayan, You create, maintain and destroy everything, then effortlessly inhabit those fourteen worlds with varieties of entities - the demigods, gandharvas - servants of the devas, humans, demons who have such masters as Prajapati Brahma, Mukhyaprana (Vayudeva), Garuda, Rudra and Devendra. Those living entities are given, according to their natures, places of residence. There are the uttama jivas or nitya siddhas, Your pure devotees who only have thoughts for you. The nitya samsarins, who wander in the cycle of birth and death, are basically innocent, but just foolishly follow their lusty desires. And the tamoyogyas, who are hell bent, mischievous, wicked and best avoided, for their destination is to practically stay in hell for time immemorial."
In Shri Madhva Vijay 8.14 whilst standing directly in front of Shrila Vyasadeva and Lord Narayana at Uttara Badri, Madhvacarya pondered over the many forms that Lord Narayana had taken. He then prostrated himself at the lotus feet of Lord Narayana, and in his mind went over the endless pastimes of the Lord. He was directly in the association of his guru (Shrila Vyasadeva), and now had the honour of seeing Lord Narayana face to face. Lord Narayana's affection poured to the pure hearted Madhva who was sitting, looking and relishing. He was so honoured to sit near these two shilst offering respectful prostrations, sitting and standing Madhva dwelt on His Lords.[JCD18]
In the Shrimad Bhagavatam 6.9.26-27 it says, "By His inconceivable internal potency, the Supreme Personality of Godhead expands into various transcendental bodies as Vamanadeva, the incarnation of strength among the demigods; Parasurama, the incarnation among saints; Nrsimhadeva and Varaha, incarnations among animals; Matsy and Kurma, incarnations among quatics. He accepts various transcendental bodies among all types of living entities, and among human beings, He especially appears as Lord Krishna and Lord Rama. By His causeless mercy He protects the demigods, who are always harassed by the demons. He is the Supreme worshipable Deity of all living entities. He is the supreme cause, represented as the male and female creative energies. Although different from this universe, He exists in His universal form (virat-rupa). In our fearful condition, let us take shelter of Him, for we are sure that the Supreme Soul will give us His protection."
MADHVACARYA EMPOWERED RETURNS TO PREACH
By the time Madhvacarya had reached ground level, so to speak, after leaving that holy place and returning to the lowlands, he had his Brahma Sutra Bhasya and several hand written copies prepared. As usual, an advance copy was sent to Udupi to the old Acyutapreksa.
Seeing Madhva back from the Himalayas everyone was very very happy, and a huge feast was prepared by five or six brahmins, headed by Agnisharma, to celebrate in true Vaishnava style. However Madhva ate most of the feast that was set for him and all his followers. Madhvacarya, if he so wanted, could eat the entire world, like at the time of devastation. That is, if he so desired, what to speak of a feast for just a few hungry men.
Narayana Panditacarya, the compiler of Madhva Vijay, states how our hero composed his Brahma Sutra Bhasya on Vedanta Sutra, to instruct the devotees about the nature of God. Vedanta Sutra consists of four chapters. The first two chapters discuss the relationship of the living entity with the Supreme Lord Krishna. This relationship is called sambandha-jnana.
The third chapter describes how one can act in that relationship with the Lord. This is called abhidheya-jnana. It discusses how we are the Lord's eternal separated parts and parcels, qualitatively one with the Lord, yet quantitatively very tiny compared to the Almighty personality of Godhead, and that we are meant for His pleasure, to serve Him.
The fourth chapter describes the result of such devotional service - prayojana-jnana, which is to go back to home, back to Godhead, which is the ultimate goal of life (anavrttih sabdat).
Each of these four chapters is again divided accordingly into five different adhikaranas or themes.
(1) Pratijna, is the initial declaration of the purpose of each treatise. For example, the declaration at the beginning of Brahma Sutra states athato-brahma-jijnasa - now is the time to enquire into the subject matter of the Absolute Truth.
(2) Hetu, is giving the reasons for the declaration and how it must be expressed.
(3) Udaharana means various examples are given to substantiate those facts.
(4) Upanaya, the theme of the particular subject, must be gradually brought to it's conclusion so the hearer can grasp the understanding of the subject.
(5) Nigamana, every statement must be supported from authoritative quotations from the Vedic literatures.
Brahma-sutra-padais caiva hetumadbhir viniscitaih - understanding of the ultimate goal of life is ascertained in the Brahma Sutra by legitimate logic and argument concerning cause and effect. As Brahma Sutra Bhasya is niyaya prasthana, the Upanisads are known as sruti-prasthana, and the Gita, Mahabhata and the Puranas are known as smrti prasthana.
The correct conslusions are made not by mere mundane logic and argument, but by bonafide logic and argument, taken from the revealed scriptures that support smrti and sruti. Simply sensual perception (pratyaksa) and reason is not enough. These are the tenants of Vedanta Sutra.
Purnaprjana Tirtha (Madhva) compiled this Sutra Bhasya under the direct instructions of the original commentator of Vedanta Sutra, Shrila Vyasadeva. He has firmly established the differences between the tiny jiva soul and his worshipful Lord, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. So establishing difference of dwaitavada, the kevaladwaita exclusive oneness philosophy of Acarya Sankara, has now only a limited life span. This dark and limited philosophy of Adwaita cannot stand in the light of Sutra Bhasaya, just as where there is sun there cannot be darkness.
Madhvacarya not only comments on the shakey philsophy of Advaita, but also attacks twenty one other previous commentators of Vedanta Sutra. In this way Madhva let no other stand without it's philosophy being known. Twenty one other commentators according to Madhva Vijay footnote 9-12 are as follows, (1) Bharativijay, (2) Sacchidananda, (3) Brahma Ghosa, (4) Satananda, (5) Udvarta, (6) Vijaya, (7) Rudrabhatta, (8) Vamana, (9) Yadavaprakasha, (10) Ramanuja, (11) Bhartruprapanca, (12) Dravida, (13) Brahmadatta, (14) Bhaskara, (15) Pisaca, (16) Vrttikara, (17) Vijayabhatta, (18) Vishnukranta, (19) Vadindra, (20) Madhavadasa, and (21) Sankara.
MADHVA STARTS HIS TOUR
Madhvacarya then started a return tour taking a rather indirect route back to Udupi - via Bihar, Bengal, the banks of the Godavari, and finally back to Udupi. One can imagine in the days when sannyasis would walk everywhere, this journey took some months. During this tour many wonderful things happened.
Madhva started out heading east through Bihar, following the path of the Ganges into Bengal, where Acarya Madhva met with and discussed with the Personality of Godhead, the son of Saci Matha, Shri Krishna Chaitanya.23
The following story is found in the Bhavisya Purana supporting an actual meeting of Shri Krishna Chaitanya and Madhvacarya, in that sacred place known a Navadwip Mayapura Dham, of which Santipur is part.
Even thoughfrom a mundane historical point of view Madhvacarya appeared more than 200 years before Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, still it is more amazing that Bhavisya Purana records this, having itself been written at least five housands of years before both. In the original sanskrit texts, the son of Saci is referred to as 'she' and 'her' depicting Lord Chaitanya's mood of Shrimati Radharani. Bhavisya means prediction, so this Purana itself is the book of predictions of the Vedic library.
Chapter 19 of Pratisarga Parva.
48. Shri Madhvacarya who is completely absorbed in Krishna knowing that 'yajnamsa' is perfect and having reached Santipuri which is supremely attractive, that twice born brahmin asked the Lord.
49. Krishna is the original Personality of Godhead and He is the cause of these worlds. Then what is the reason for some not worshiping Him and Him only? What is the root cause for one to worship demigods?
50. Those learned in the path of 'sakti' engage in sacrifices of violence and they worship the devas (demigods) in this world by sacrifices such as 'asvamedha'.
51. The son of Saci - the yajnamsa - on hearing this smilingly said, "For those in the mode of ignorance, who worship sakti (Durga), Krishna is not revealed as the Supreme Bhagavan."
52. "They are only interested in material sense gratification, absorbed in violence and meat eating. They enjoy other's wives and for these activities attain only the abode of Yama."
53. "These criminals, especially those engaged in the sin of killing other living beings, reach the abode of Yama. Devoid of the proper sentiments towards life, they have no realization that Bhagavan is superior to the material nature that they worship."
54. The Supreme Lord was in another aged worshipped as follows. His intelligence is Brahma and identification Siva (auspicious). The very sound of who is Ganesa and His touch is Yama.
55. Form is Kurma and taste Kuvera. Smell is Visvakarma and hearing is Lord Sani.
56. Skin is Brmh (which shines, with lustre) and the eternal sun is the eye. Tongue is Lord Svara and the new dawn of the day is the son of Aswin.
57. The face is like that of the jiva and Indra the moving hand. Krishna is the feet and Daksa the progentive male genital organs and the back is death. O obeisances unto that Lord Purusha.
58. By violent sacrifices only He is to be satisfied. Previously in the days of yore sacrifical animals were offered and this Deity, it is to be understood then that in those days He was present to receive the offering. By liberating the sacrifical animal from that animal body, one obtains great pious results.
59. However by breaking these rules, whoever performs such violent yajnas in this age of Kali certainly becomes sinful. Due to this sin that person will dwell in Andhantamasa24 hell for practically eternity.
60. From voilent sacrfices both great pious results and great impious results can be achieved. Shri Krishna has put a stop to these violent sacrifices in the age of Kali, replacing them with another sacrifice.
61. On the first day of the waxing moon in the month of Kartika (Oct-Nov), the Lord has initiated a sacrifice which is known as Annakuta (Govardhana Puja).
62. The king of the devas, Indra, became displeased because his sacrifices were being stopped and so he tried to flood the land of Vraja. But the eternal energy of Krishna Who is compasssion personified intervened for the welfare of the inhabitants.
63. That energy, the divine mother in her beautiful form manifested from Krishna in the form of Radha.
64. By that energy, Bhagavan Shri Krishna held the Govardhana Hill. Due to this feat He has become worshipable as 'Giridhari' for ever.
65. In this divine form of Radha and Krishna, Brahman is eternally complete. In this form Krishna is not Bhagavan, yet as Radha Krishna, the energy and the energetic pleasure potency personified, is more perfectly Supreme, infact even more completely complete than Krishna alone.
66. Hearing this description from that person who is the personification of Radha Krishna combined, Madhvacarya, who is very dear to Lord Hari, became even more fixed as a pure devotee of that Lord, and an eternal worshipper of Shri Krishna Chaitanya.
brahmam padmam vaishnavam ca
saivam laingam sa-garudam
varaham matsyam kaurmam ca
brahmandakhyam iti tri-sat
These verses were taken from Maha Bhagavata Purana (Shrimad Bhagavatam) as they list the eighteen major Puranas that were written by Shrila Vyasadeva. These were all compiled and written before five thousand years ago by the literary incarnation of Godhead, Vedavyasa. These verses (SB 12.7.23-24) are also supported in the Varaha Purana, Siva Purana and Matsya Purana, so Bhavisya Purana is defintely an authorised source of information.
Madhva proclaimed that the Sruti says that in this age animal sacrifice is not permitted. Of course this was just reminded to Madhva by the Yajnamsa shortly before in Navadvipa Dhama by the son of Saci, Krishna Chaitanya.
In other places like Navadvipa Mahatmya, instances of the Lord appearing to Madhva in dreams whilst he stayed at Navadvipa, west Bengal in the district of Nadia all confirm that Madhva actually visited this seat of learning. According to the Upansidas also this Navadvipa Dhama, consisting of nine islands in the Ganges River, is said to be equal to the original birth place of Lord Krishna - Shri Vrndavana.
In Rg Veda (8.29.7) it is also stated how the original Personality of Godhead, Who previously appeared as Urukrama (Vamanadeva), also visited that place (tirtha) where the devotees like to go, because of its holy sanctity.
In Shri Krishna Chaitanya Upanisad 5, Lord Brahma said, "I shall speak to you this supreme confidential knowledge. The two armed form of Syamasundara of beautiful blackish blue conplexion, who is the original Supreme Personality of Godhead, the Supersoul within everything, the greatest mystic, beyond the three modes of material nature and endowed with a form of trancendental goodness with a beautiful golden complexion, will appear in Navadvipa Dhama, the spiritual counterpart of Goloka on the banks of the Ganges, to disseminate devotional service throught the world. These verses are the summary of this matter."
Text 6 says, Lord Chaitanya, Who is a golden colour, is the original Personality of Godhead. He has a universal form, He is the great soul and in previous ages He appeared in forms that were red, blackish and white. His self is pure consciousness, for His energy is certainly transcendental. He has the appearance of a devotee and bestows pure devotion for Himself upon all. He can only be known by means of devotional service."
Madhvacarya, in his Mundakopanisad, quotes the following words from Narayana Samhita. "In the Dwapara age Vishnu was worshipped by all peoples by the method laid down in the Pancaratra. In the present controversial age of Kali, the Supreme Lord Hari is worshipped by His name alone."25
Again Chaitanya Upanisad 9 says, "The almighty Lord pleases everyone with the mula-mantra of His holy name." and 11 says, "He Himself chants the maha-mantra which consists of three names: Hare, Krishna and Rama."
In Mundaka Upanisad (3.1.3.) it is stated that "One who sees that golden coloured Personality of Godhead, the Supreme Lord, the creator, Who is the source of the impersonal Brahman, is liberated."
Madhvacarya not only went to this holy place, but Lord Chaitanya appeared to him in at least two instances and spoke with Madhva. When He appeared in Madhva's dream, the Lord told Madhva that later He would appear and make use of Madhva's pure vaishnava philosophy and would also accept Madhva's sampradaya. Acarya Madhva was instructed to preach like anything and establish the Vaishnava conclusion, but to worship the Lord who had revealed himself in His golden form in secret, for the time was not yet right for the public to accept Him.
After this time, Madhva many times spoke the philosophy of acintyabhedabheda tattva, but Madhva never used the actual term. In Bhagavata Tatparya (11.7.51) where Madhva cites a verse from Brahma-Tarka, he directly used the philosophy of simultaneously one and yet different but without saying one, for as Shri Chaitanya pointed out, the time was not right for this philosophy, no-one would be ready for it.
Madhvacarya, from Navadvipa Dhama, travelled down to Jagannatha Puri in Orissa to take darshan of the Lord of the universe. Madhvacarya visited all the important sacred tirthas down that east coast of Orissa, such as Shri Kurmaksetra at Ganjam near Kakulam. It is a very ancient place of pilgrimage, dating back to the time of Svetamaharaja in the time lost through ages. This fine old temple stands with it's silver dome glistening in the sun by the side of the Kurma lake. Lord Kurma shows His opulence in the form of the opulent temple with fine colonades, columns and open court yards where the devotees still assemble for discussions, festivals and chanting the Lord's glories.
From there he toured still further to the hill at Simhacalam near Vishakapatnam, taking darshan of Lord Varaha Nrsimhadeva there. This is the place where Hiranyakasipu, Prahlada's demoniac father, threw Prahlada into the sea from off a mountain. He then placed this mountain on top of Prahlada's head, but Prahlad remained unscathed by such torment. The main feature today at this splendid temple is the Saligram Deity of Lord Varaha Narasimha, though this can only be seen on the Nrsimha Caturdasi day falling at the end of April beginning of May on the fourteenth day of the rising moon.
From there Madhwacarya travelled still further south into Andra Pradesh to the banks of the sacred Godavari River. On the banks of the Godavari, which flow across country forming a natural border with Karnataka, some say it was at Rajamundry at the mouth of the Godavari that Madhva countered and defeated the attacks of all the popular philosophies of the day.
To define points of philiosophy, Madhva used the Pramanas (ways of validifying knowledge) or as Madhva put it, yathartham pramanam, the process by which an object is made known as it is. Taking each philosophy, that of Bhattam Prabhakara, Vaisesika, Nayayaka, Bauddha and Charvaka, Madhva clarified the truth to establish things as they are in relation with the Lord.
For example, the smarta followers of Kumarila Bhatta regarded knowledge as something transcendent and non-sensible which can only be inferred to by a mental state of cognition. Their validity of perception of anything is only tangible or apparent when an object has inference to it such as a jug. They say that the object is permanent by knowledge of it. However they deny the permanance of any form, be it jiva or God.
Thinking by limited reasoning that all known form is like that of this temporary material world, and knowing that these things, because of their misuse, causes frustration, anxiety and suffering, then how can there by anything other than this. Actualy they have no conception of the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Whose body is made of sac cid ananda vigraha (eternality, knowledge and bliss), or of the nature of the Lord's separated parts and parcels the tiny jiva souls as dependant servants of the Lord. Indeed they are a strange breed of materialistic brahmanas who see everything in relation to what they can get out of it.
Kumarila Bhatta recreated the ancient brahminical train of thought stemming from Manu (Manu Samhita or Manu Smrti) and established what is known as smarta-ism. Much stress was put on animal sacrifices, the chanting of Vedic mantra, etc. as outlined in Mimamsa philsophy. He was around the time of Sankara (700 AD) and his philosophy is generally referred to as Nyaya-Vaisesika. Madhwacarya addressed some of the basic points of Nyaya-Vaisesika which are (1) the self validity of the Vedas, (2) the eternality of the Vedas, (3) disbelief in any creator or God, (4) eternality of sound (sabda) and according to Kumarila (5) direct perception of the self in the vague notion of ego.
Another of the personalities that Madhwa dealt with was Prabhakara. The followers of Prabhakara regard knowledge or understanding as self-luminous, in that way at any given moment, understanding through revelation of any given object, can be had and thus one knows the subject of the object of knowegde - "I am aware of that." (But are they???) ZAP, POW, instant self realization.
Vaisesika's reasoning, and their conclusion, is that we can directly percieve the self in a feeling of I am that, and that they have no need therefore to rely or depend on any scripture for proof of the existance of the self. Reasoning or inference of that existance of the self is only an additional proof of what they have already found through perception," that I am."
Kanada points out that since there is nothing else but self to which the expression "I" may be applied, there is no need to fall back on scriptures. The problem is one can and will find oneself way off track in a very short time. They have gotten things completely the wrong way around. Sensual perception can it is a fact, be used as a means of knowledge, providing it falls into the conclusion of the original creator, the Supreme Lord, Sruti. What then to speak of their logic and argument? That's alright in itself again provided that the logician is sane and his arguments agree with the Lord's conclusion found in the sruti or scriptures. For when any intelligent person creates, he also gives operating manuals for the benefit of the user or those who will come later. So these arguments are really just like the ramblings of children who don't really know anything as fact, but are playing with the controls, and thinking see I am doing.
Madhva strongly makes his stand through Upajivya pramana or the logical starting point to define the validity of any subject. He says with what one concludes from this furnishes the next stage of thought or knowledge. But if one's examination does not fall in line with proven facts as stated previously, then that sensual perception or knowledge found by Upajivya pramana or Pratyaksa can be rejected. But when it comes to saksipratyaksa, saksi is the knowledge which comes down from time immemorial like the smrti sastra, what the Lord's pure representitive, the guru has said, which is enforced by by combinations of sastra and practical reaization, this cannot be doubted and has never seen to have been wrong. The other authority that must be accepted is bheda sruti, one has to accept. Despite everything, sruti or that which has been spoken by the Supreme Lord in the form of scripture, must be fully accepted.
According to Svetasvatara Upanisad (3.18)
nava-dvare pure dehi
hamso lelayate bahih
vasi sarvasya lokasya
sthavarasya carasya ca
"The Supreme Personality of Godhead, Who is living within the body of a living entity, is the actual controller of all living entities all over the universe. This body consists of nine gates, two eyes, two nostrils, two ears, one mouth, the anus and genital. The tiny living entity in his conditioned stage identifies himself with the body, but when he identifies himself with the Lord within and becomes subservient to him, the jiva becomes just as free as the Lord, even while in this body."
If one is on the brahma bhuta platform then certainly the Lord may reveal things from within but in the conditioned state if one expects the Supreme Lord to become his servant, this is simply wishful thinking. An example of our power of perception can be given through the example of some blind men and an elephant. One may touch the trunk and say that an elephant is long and wet at one end. Another may touch the ear and say no, an elephant is round and flat like a dish, whilst a third man may feel the stomach and say that it is big and round with spiky hairs. How much can each of them perceive? Another example may be given in connection with a son. If he wants to know who his father is, then he has to ask his mother. He could, by his own speculation or inductive thinking, try to find out who his father is by who was in the vicinty at the time, or he could go up to every man on the planet and ask, "If you,sir are my father?" But easier would be to ask one who will know.26 If one simply waits for that knowledge to come of its own accord, or instead makes vast endeavour to get it, one could very easily be wrong, there is no guarantee. Actually it is a great field for mental speculators. "Now there is a horn and there is a hare, thats it, a horn of a hare. I've seen the horn of the hare." "Or flowers that float in the sky." Or seeing pumpkins in a field of horses and asuming them to be horses eggs. Definitely flowers are real and so is the sky, but flowers that float in the sky? Sounds like the ramblings of an over producive mind.
These "Jains" though, see it to be that knowledge will be revealed to us from within. The Jains say that actaully getting any said objective is directly a result of the effort to get it. So they say by having the indication that an object or objective exists and by a flash of inner knowledge one will have the object, and will also have full realization or understanding of the subject. This philosophy relies on sensual perception also, as stated earlier, one can actually perceive things with the senses and the mind, but alas, when we are dealing with spiritual topics which temselves are not of this world, just how much can a limited material mind or the senses perceive. Sometimes the mind will recall gold and another time a tree or a mountain, then the mind may combine them together and come up with a golden mountain which may or may not exist, yet now we find we are witnesses to the mind's picture show. There are so many concoctions the mind has introduced to us as it's wonderful revelations.
If this philosophy leaned to the acceptance of the Supersoul, some would say that the Supersoul or Paramatma within had revealed this knowledge, but the don't.
Mostly they are mayavadis, and false renounciates. They won't ride on any conveyance, to them everything is false. They fall in somewhere between the Buddhists and the Mayavadis. It is nice that they are nonviolent to others but their annihilistic philosophy is set on killing their real self. Unfortunatelly they try to avoid God thinking that simply negation of worldliness will suffice. Although the will not accept the Vedic authority originally they are an off shoot of the followers of Lord Rsabhadev.
Madhwa presented the question, then an answer. Some doubt arises who can distinguish between the mind and the supersoul without real knowledge of each, simply relying on inner revelation to define what is true and what is false. One must accept an authority, and this is the guru and scripture for they are the guiding intelligence personified.
Around this time there were many speculator for Madhwa to clean up. Another mentioned in Madhwa Vijay was the Naiyayika philosophy. This tries to say that by inference or reasoning with known factors, and the harmony or corresponding of our perception of a particular thing with the activity of it has prompted us to realize it. An example of this can be that when I am sure that if I work in accordance with the perception of an object I shall be successful, and I call that valid knowledge of the object in question. Like if I work hard I'll become a millionair, but its not necessarily a fact there are many who have worked like asses only to remain poor hard working asses.
Though their philosophy says that by inference or reason through experience one can understand that consciousness, pleasures, pains, willing, etc could not belong to our body or the senses, there must by some entity to which they belong. They say that by seeing the world as a source of suffering one should renonounce it for it is false. By the understanding that this world is the cause of suffering due to our bondage or attachment to it which is based on misidentification or false knowledge, therefore we should just think of the opposite of all that is the cause of us suffering. So when pleasure comes, we are to think that this in relatity is pain, so rejecting all pleasure, be fixed in renounciation of this false place. (just another twist under the influence Buddhistic insanity).
The Buddhist (Bauddha) view of Pramana, they say that simply by thought of anything it will manifest and thus for as long as it is there one will have knoweldge of it. An example they give is that knowledge of any thing is possible only by virtue that one puts the particular name on a thing that gives it identity to oneself, and thus making things similar or tangible, when you take the label off it disappears, after all everything is coming from only my idea that it is existing anyway. But this can be easily refuted with the verse from Bahagavad-gita (2.12),
na tv evaham jatu namam
na tvam neme janadhipah
na caiva na bhavisyamah
sarve vayam atah param
"Never was there a time when I did not exists, nor you, nor all these kings, nor in the future shall any of us cease to be."
Every material thing has it's origin in the eternal spiritual Lord. The Lord asures us in Bhagavad-gita (10.8) "I am the source of the material and spiritual worlds. Everything emanates from Me ...."
But the Buddhists reject this saying that there is nothing but "I". They completely reject that there can be "you" or any other. Therefore just for us to repesent an argument against their philosophy defeats this, for an argument to take place there must be two, or at least a second factor, yet this is their main principle, that it is only "I am", only I count, (the sound of one hand clapping). As individuals with independence to choose and to act and dress differently, separate from the "Buddhist philosopher" in a different place at a different time, how can it all be a product of their fertile minds?
As far as the hedonistic philosophy of Carvaka, Carvaka himself was an existentialist, which, according to the dictionary means, "one who follows a philosophical theory emphasizing that man is responsible for his own actions and free to choose his development and destiny." 27
This philosophy is the paradise of the cynic. It came to be known as Lokayata philosophy, propounding that there is no future life; our parents are our progenitors, and that nothing which cannot be proven by one's own perception should be believed.
This sceptic, whose only idea was that of "enjoyment" in this material world, once made the following statement - since everyone wants to enjoy nice foodstuffs one should eat as much ghee as possible. One may say, "I have no money, then how shall I purchase ghee?"
Carvaka's reply is:
rnam krtva ghrtam pibet
yavaj jivet sukham jivet
bhasmi-bhutasya dehasya kutah
dunar agamano bhavet
"If you have no money, then beg, borrow or steal, but in some way secure ghee and enjoy life. You will not be held responsible. As soon as your body is burned to ashes after your death then everything is finished."
In this way people have been trained up - do anything you like but somehow or another get money, for if one has money one can eat nicely. Cakvaka's philosophy goes along with the atheistic mood of perform any kind of activity one likes, completely disregarding the scriptural injunctions and completely without concern for future bondage, what to speak of distress or violence caused to others in the pursuit of sense gratification. According to Bhagavad-gita (18.25) this is action in the mode of darkness or ignorance.
Actions which need great endeavour in which to make them succeed - the goal being again to satisfy the lusty desires of the senses, and which are based on the platform of false ego, are considered by Bhagavad-gita (18.24) to be in the mode of passion at best.
To work hard to become a 'big man' in society with lots of money which brings, of it's own accord, recognition, honour and prestige, irrespective of whether the money is black (illegal) or white (laundered), just bring in money at fever pitch. Opulent conveyances and expensive clothes maketh the man is propounded by Carvaka. Its now or never enjoy at all costs even if one is up to the neck in debts. This philosophy is the fuel for fools, you are a success in the Kali Yuga. "Look at me, I'm a success everywhere I go, all heads turn attracting the glances of the opposite sex, women adore me for my opulence and 'self control', men are forced to look up to me. I am the Lord of all I survey. All this I have gotten by my own efforts. I have worked hard for this and I have the right to enjoy."
Loans and mortgages are taken out to build a nice house, simply for sleeping in. After sleep, sex indulgence with persons who the false prestige image has won over. This system of Carvakas', of satisfying one's own lusty desires, has no regard for another's property for it or she can be bought when required, for the world is my oyster, for as long as I am here, and then who cares?
Anyone who comes to say anything different from me is my enemy, through polarization, manipulation, diplomacy and duplicity I will defend my property and position against others. Those who wish to be my friends can work according to my rules. If not, the rules for dealing with an enemy take over to belittle and ridicule the victim.
These persons are always very cunning like the dog and expert in biting others' heels through expertly planned executions in forums judged by vollies of public insults.
The followers of this hedonistic system of philosophy propounded by Carkava are, according to Bhagavad-gita (18.27) extremely greedy, always envious and impure, even though externally they may look very good. Consequently they are moved by their own distress and own search for mundance happiness but have not a thought for others. For the sake of sense gratification they will lie, cheat, and steal. Being envious of everyone they are prepared to do any deed to get what they want.
Thinking themselves lord, they avoid scriptural injunctions, they do not accept the actual Lord either directly or indirectly, primarily because it is His injunctions which makes the standard that is designed to stop such exploitation of the senses. Therefore they are especially envious of the Lord.
The followers of Carvaka's philosophy are thus more than just materialistic. They work according to their particular mode of nature as previously stated, which is sometimes in ignorance, sometimes passion, and sometimes mixed.
Unfortunately, due to the elements of lust and greed, the followers of Carvaka Muni are mostly unhappy, for they have no faith in anything tangible other than their own feeble bodies, mind, and puny intelligence. Because of their exploitive natures, they are without actual friends, for who can they trust, and who would put their trust in them. Duplicit and cynical towards anyone who is happy or free, they are more dangerous than snakes, for a snake can be killed. But an envious man daily spreads his poison through his plans to increase his sense gratification, and his kingdom.
Naturally this philosophy appeals to those who don't care how they get what they want out of life, irrespecitive of what it is, or how it is come by, or who gets in the way. However, despite Madhva's outright condemnation of Carvaka's hedonistic philosophy, Madhva accepts the pratyaksa (or reality of experience, memory and sensual awareness that Carvaka uses as his only source of knowledge), though Madhva doesn't accept pratyaksa as the only source of knowledge. Madhva calls Carvaka's philosophy dehatmavada, or the philosophy that I am this body.
Relentlessly presenting many arguments in this mode, Madhvacarya barely flexed his philosophical muscles and yet smashed all of these so-called pandits from each respective school. At this time an exponent of the doctrine of the Vedas came forward. This was the great Sobhana Bhatta, who was the best of logicians. He had recently refuted the Bhatta philosophy. Sobhana Bhatta was learned in all aspects of Veda, Mahabharata, the eighteen Puranas, and naturally he followed the injunctions and observances thereof.
Sobhana Bhatta came forward amidst the hundreds of famous pandits, and after undergoing some preliminaries, mediators were established. Sobhana Bhatta presented the philosophy of Advaita and Madhvacarya presented his 'new' philosophy of dwaita. Though eighteen departments of Vedic learning were represented in the asssembly of pandits, all of those who had been previously defeated by Madhva looked on. Now Sobhana Bhatta was to face the same end even though he was to put up a good fight, but Acarya Madhva was more than his match. Victorious in his debate, Madhwa, having countered all the arguments of Sobhana Bhatta, in an all-illuminating way outshone the Bhatta in every way. After this, as stated in Madhva Vijay (9.20), Sobhana Bhatta, so taken back by the greatness of Madhvacarya and his Gita Bhasya, that Sobhana Bhatta never had any further love for any other sastra from that day on. Madhva Vijaya (9.21-22) says that any man who disregards Madhva Sastra is no better than a man who owns a lime kiln that pounds limestone for using it in chewing betal, and who, whilst searching, sifting through the limestone, finds a priceless Valamuri conch. Seeing that it could not be baked into lime he just throws it away even though to those who know this conch it is very rare and precious. Sometimes this right handed Valamuri conch is called "Laxmi" conch, born from Varuna and who bestows the worshipper with wealth, etc.
In their firey debate Sobhana Bhatta, who was learned in the 14 schools of Vedic learning, was silenced by Madhva in fourteen seconds. He begged in humble submission to his newly found guru, Bhagavatapada Madhvacarya. In full prostration Sobhana Bhatta longed to become a disciple of the amazing Madhvacarya.
Another pandit of the time, Sami Sastri, who was the son of noble-man, approached Madhva for debate. His father held a very high post with the monarch of the King of Kalinga, Orissa. He had inherited the prestige and postion of his noble father, and was a favourite around the King's court. Sami Sastri's learning of the scriptures didn't seem to fit in his position as son of a nobleman. If he had been the son of a sage or rsi, maybe, but not as a noble man's son, he was so learned.
Sami Sastri had heard many things about Madhva and was very much attracted to him, so much so that he approached Madhva and asked for initiation. Madhva accepted the boy as his pupil-disciple, and gave him the name Narahari. Narahari now constandtly studied Madhva's Sutra Bhasya and soon became expert in it's conclusions. Soon Madhva decided to leave the area of the Godavari to return to Udupi. Narahari also joined him as Madhva left for that place.
After travelling only but a short distance, Madhva told his disciple Narahari to go back to the kingdom of Kalinga. In the Narahari Yatistotra it states that the purpose for Narahari's return was on the direct order of Madhva to procure from the royal treasury the Deity of Shri Mula Rama. Mula literally means root, or original sourse, an so this was a very special Deity. This Deity was the legendry Deity of Maharaja Iksvaku of the Sun Dynasty. This exquisit Deity of Lord Rama was later given to Maharaja Dasaratha the father of Lord Rama. Maharaja Dasaratha worshipped this original form or Deity before Lord Rama was even born to him as his son, and just before Lord Rama wound up His earthly pastimes, Laxman gave the Deity to one old brahmin devotee who, throughout his life had taken a vow that during the life of Lord Rama, had said he would not take his food until he had seen Lord Rama. Once upon a time, for a period of eight days, he could not take personal darshan of Lord Rama. As he was fasting totally, even from water for this whole period, he became weak and delirious. On the eighth day Rama gave a public darshan and the brahmin staggered in. Lord Rama, seeing His great devotion for him, told Laxman to give the Mula Rama Deity to this Brahmin so that this would enable the old brahmin to daily see his worshipful Lord. As time passed, the old brahmin became invalid, and could not even come to the palace to see Rama. Constantly worshipping Mula Rama though, even up until his death bed, with his final breaths he gave the Deity back to Laxman who the brahmin summoned near. When it was time for Lord Rama to wind up His earthly pastimes He arranged through Laxman that the Mula Rama Deity be given to Hanumanji.
Hanuman, for many years, carried Him around his neck, worshiping Him daily. Later, during the Dwapara Yuga, the Deity was given to Bhimasena whilst he was picking flowers for Draupadi on Ganda Madan hill. Mula Rama was kept with the Pandavas until finally they were given to the trust of the King of the Gajapati Kings of Orissa, named Ksemakanta. When the Pandavas wound up their earthly pastimes, this historically priceless Deity was kept in the King's treasury house as a most treasured heir-loom.
However Shripad Madhvacarya, who is that same tattva of Vayu, previously possessing the Mula Rama Deity in the forms of Hanumana and Bhima, now requested Narahari not to take to the order of sannyasa as Narahari had requested to do, but to go back to Kalinga and secure Mula Rama. returning to Kalinga Nagara, Narahari again served in the kingdom.
Not long after that the ruling king passed away, and his infant son, for obvious reasons, could not be made king. As is the time honoured tradition, the royal elephant was sent out with the royal garland held high in his trunk to look for the successor to the throne. With the ministers following closely behind, they witness an incredible scene - the royal elephant garlanded Narahari, thus making him the heir to the throne of the Gajapat kingdom of Kalinga.
Around the year 1280 AD, when the Prince Regent, heir to the throne, became twelve years of age, Narahari relinquished his post as acting King. The child King, out of extreme gratitude, asked Narahari to ask for anything that he may have wanted, be it riches, kingdom, women, anything. Narahari asked for, and was thus given, the Mula Rama Deity by the King. Then he, who had become ruler of the whole country, returned to Madhvacarya, his beloved guru, and in a surrendered mood, renounced worldly affairs. Madhvacarya gave him the sannyasa order and the suffix 'Tirtha' to his name.
It seems that I have fallen prey to the same sequence of events as other commentators in getting caught up with this wonderful story of Narahari Tirtha and Mula Rama. Anyway, back to the present scene of events.28
It is stated in Madhva Vijay (9.28) that Madhvacarya inundated everyone with his philosophy, though due to the nature of this Vedanta Sutra, mostly he preached to those of the brahminically learned society, just as a monsoon cloud pours rains and fills the needy low-lands with water, not shedding it's water on the other areas or those places that are not so needy or firtile. For the brahminical class of men had been taken in, and in some cases forced to accept unpalletable philosophies. But now after this crying out for the pure Vaishnava teachings, the Lord had sent his empowered representative. Acarya Madhwa made all brahminical society happy again for the first time in many years.
Madhva was honoured by all for his very learned presentation of Sutra Bhasya, arousing the curiousity of everyone on the way back to Udupi.
MADHVA RETURNS TO UDUPI
On his return, there to greet him was the elderly ascetic Acyutapreksa. Previously Madhva had sent a copy of his Sutra Bhasya when he just left Badri, before his long tour of the east coast.
Acyutapreksa still played the part of the advaitin - such was his pastime, so Madhva could, in depth, explain to everyone in Udupi his Sutra Bhasya. Acyutapreksa was proud of Madhva and his achievements, his preaching and all the followers he had made. After Madhva had completed fully his explanation of Brahma Sutra Bhasya to Acyutapreksa, Acyutapreksa relented and agreed that this Sutra Bhasya was just like the King of swans that drives away insignificant crow-like philosophies of the Kali Yuga.
Daily Madhvacarya would go to the Anantesvara (Anantasana) temple. As on walks in, to the left side of the entrance in the area in front of the Deity, Madhva would sit and preach to many of his followers. Sitting in the open air, his golden body shimmering in the sunlight and propounding strongly thatt the Supreme Personality of Godhead, the Suprem ISvara, is and always will be Lord Krishna - Narayana - Vishnu and we are but His insignificant servants.
To thus prove submission from the Supreme Lord, Madhva arranged from the Pancaratiki system that his followers accept the marks of Vaisnavism - panca samskaras. The five reformitory - purificatory procedures as stated in the Padma Purana, Uttara Khanda.
tapah pundram tatha nama
mantro yagasca pancamah
ami hi panca samskarah
(1) Austerity, (2) wearing the marks of Vishnu on one's body, such as tilak, (3) accepting a new name at the time of initiation, (4) chanting the glorification of the Lord in the form of the Lord's Holy name, and (5) engaging in the performance of the Yuga dharma or supreme sacrifice.
In his Mundakopanisad quoting Narayana Samhita, Madhva says, "... In the present controversial age of Kali, the Supreme Lord Hari is worshipped in the form of His Holy name alone."
tapto 'tra tapta cakrada-mudra dharanam ucyate
tenaiva hari namadi-mudra capy upalaksyate
Austerity means to accept the heat mudras or fire brands of the Lord's weapons - the conch and disc - as well as the Lord's names, His lotus and club. By taking these heat mudras upon one's body, detachment from the bodily concept of life is invoked.
pundram syad urdhva pundram tal
chastre bahu vidham smrtam
hari mandiram tat pada
krty adyati subhanaham
Pundram here means marking the body with sacred clay from such holy places as Dwaraka, Prayag, the banks of the Ganges, Yamuna, Godavari, Pampa (Tungabhadra), Kaveri or from the sacred Tulasi plant. By marking the body with Vaishnava tilak or urdhva pundra or the forms of the Lord's feet, one marks out the humility that one's body is the temple of Lord Vishnu.
Madhva instructed that as well as the vertical lines of gopichand, jointed at the mose like the letter U, a dark red bindu dot, made from the ash of plaintain flowers mixed with turmeric, be placed beneath a line of dhupasesa, which is the thickness of a grain of rice. The dupasesa is made from the burnt wick of the flames offered to the Lord during the arati ceremony.
namatra gaditam sadbhir
hari bhrtyatva bodhakam
swesta deva vapur matah
The word nama means name, and this means that when one is initiated the guru changes the name. As one changes one's heart one must change one's name indicating that he is a servant of the Lord. Next is mantra diksa. In this verse it is said that the Gopal gayatri, which is the same as the Lord Himself, is given.
salagramadi pujan yaga sabdena kathyate
pramanany esu drsyani duranadisu sadhubhih
By the world yaga, the worhsip of the Saligram Sila and other Deity forms of the Personality of Godhead are described, glorified and sung about in great joy. So in this way, taking the system from references throughout the Puranas and other Vedic literatures, Madhva established Vaishnava agama of initiation for his disciples based on the Pancaratriki system.
Narayana Panditacarya in Madhva Vijay (9.39) says "Both good knowledge and the mark of the Sudarshana disc have naturally an undesirable effect to those who wish to remain sinful."
Traditionally in Udupi, tapta mudras are still accepted on the devasayan ekadashi day in the light fortnight in the Vaishnava month of Vamana or Asadha (June-July).
All the Madhva Vaishnavas, from that day on, accepted this panca samskara, giving up their old ways in a mood of self surrender to Madhvacarya's pure Vaishnava teachings. Devotees would gather around Madhva wherever he would go; if it were to the temple, all the ears waited with baited breath for just one word of divine wisdom. If he went to the ocean to take bath, again crowds would assemble just to take tirtha (his caranamrta or water that had touched his holy body.) Such a pure Vaishnava is a walking place of pilgrimage. The result of taking unlimited baths in all the sacred bathing tanks or rivers can be had just by one eleventh of a second's association with such a pure Vaishnava devotee of the Lord.
Many times Madhva would go to the beach at Malpe to perform his daily ablutions, performance of acaman, nyasa, etc., and distribute the tirtha and Tulasi afterwards. On other occasions he would slip away on his own around two or three o'clock in the morning to take his sea bath.
On one such occasion a wonderful and famous incident took place.
KRSNA COMES TO UDUPI
One morning in 1285 AD he had set out for Malpe beach, and as he walked he composed some of the verses, which later became part of the famed Dwadasa Stotram, in glorification to the Lord. On this day, Madhva felt a very special thing was about to happen - something that would be for the greatest benefit for all the devotees. Though Madhva didn't reveal to anyone, he knew that before the sun had set on this coral reef beach, the Lord of his life would appear. Soon a storm occured and the wind blew up a tempest.
Madhva, calm and peaceful, stayed where he was on that beach, meditating on Lord Krishna. As this freak storm peaked, Madhvacarya saw a merchant ship with sails fully up being blown onto the edge of the coral reef. Being merciful by nature, Madhva, the son of the wind god, took his shawl and attached it to his sannyasa rod and waved it in the air. At the same time he deeply breathed in and miraculously the ship was sucked through a safe area of the reef to the beach where Madhva was waiting. As the ship touched the safety of the shore, the joyful crew glorified the lone ascetic who had saved their lives and costly cargo.
In the same swift way the storm had appeared, now it had gone, with it's mission fulfilled. The captain of the ship approached our hero, Madhvacarya, and asked how could they repay him for saving them. "We have silk, spices, gems and gold - what would you like as certainly we are indebted to you?" Madhva simply asked from where had they come. Dwaraka was the reply. "O Dwaraka? Do you have any Gopichand on board?" I believe you do! The captain was happy to reply that they were using it as balast to keep the boat stable in the water. He immediately sent his men to bring the Gopichand from the cargo hold. Madhva however had his sights on a particular piece of Gopichand - it was huge and heavy and none of the fifty crew members combined could carry it. Madhvacarya reached into the hold and picking it up with great ease, lifted it out just as Hanuman lifted the Gandamadana Hill. In fact, as he did this feat, the crew members were heard to say, "Oh look, just like Hanuman, this ascetic monk has easily with one hand lifted this huge clod of Gopichand that all of our crew of fifty could not even move. How wonderful it is."
It is said that just as the Purohit or priest gives up the association of the Yajuman (donor) after receiving the donation, and just as a prostitute gives up a pennyless man after extracting his money, so in the same way Madhvacarya, in deep and intense devotion, then carried single-handed this clod of Gopichant up the beach and towards the road which leads to Udupi.
As Madhva reached the end of the beach front, as the road turns to the right at the village of Odapaandi (modern day name meaning "where the sailing boat carrying the Deity came in") a large piece of Gopichand broke off, and as it fell to the ground it revealed a deity of Lord Balarama. At that place was an ancient temple of Skanda Maharaja (Kartikeya, Subhramaniyam, Murugan, the son of Lord Siva). By tradition one cannot place a Deity of either a demigod or the Supreme Lord Vishnu if the mood is not conducive to the harmony of both. So we can see that in this case, everything was perfect. The son of Lord Siva naturally worships his father Lord Siva, and Lord Siva worships the Lord known as Sankarsana. Lord Sankarshana, Who is whitish in complexion and dressed in a blue dhoti, is non other than an expansion of Lord Balarama, and so a happy union was made.
Madhva then installed the deity at that place where the Lord is known as Vadabandesvara.
In great jubilation, Madhvacarya carried the remaining piece of Gopichand to Udupi. As he walked he composed the rest of his Dwadasa Stotram prayers.29
Upon his arrival in Udupi, Madhva gently placed this clod of gopichand into the temple lake called Madhva Sarovara. As he put the Gopichand into the water, the Gopichand broke open and dissolved, revealing a most wonderful sight. Soon, in excitement, a large crowd had gathered to see what the Gopichand had revealed. It was Bala-Krishna, holding a rope in one hand and a rod for driving cows in the other.
At the time of the advent of the Kali Yuga, Dwaraka and all of it's residents wound up their pastimes as Lord Krishna and His transcendental brother Lord Balarama left for Their own abode, Goloka Vrndavan in the spiritual world. At this time Arjuna placed these Deities of Krishna and Balarama into Rukmini Vana in Dwaraka.
There is an oral tradition of the history of these Deities that has been handed down through time which gives us an account in accordance with Madhva Vijaya (9.41).
atraivam purvacarya pravadah-
kadacit devaki devi dwarakayam sutam harim
ucava bala lilanam darsanutsukamanasa
Mother Devaki, being desirous of witnessing the childhood pastimes that were denied her by fate, being locked up in the prison of Kamsa, appraoched Lord Krishna and asked this favour of Him.
yasoda balalilaste vilokya paramam mudam
jagama kila tatraikam lilam me krishna darsaya
O Krishna, Yasoda was so fortunate that she had the pleasure of enjoying Your childhood pastimes. Why don't You please show to me similar sports and pastimes?
evam matra cuditu dwarakayam
krsno bhutva balakah karhicit tam
prapamandam dadhi samloodhayantim
lilabhavai ranjayan matr cittam
Taking into account of His mother's intense feeling of love, Krishna assumed the form of the child again. Then by mystic potency He re enacted the drama of when she was churning curds into butter, and Krishna came crying to her and in this way entertained His mother, Devaki.
tad nkamaruhya papau srutam sah
stanyam tadasyam prasamiksamanah
tada tadiksavivasantara sa
sukhamburasau vijahara devi
Staring at His mother's face, child Krishna climbed onto her lap and began to drink her breast milk. Devaki's joy knew no bounds and she forgot herself in the ecstacy.
dadhyamatram vibha jyatna navanitam prabhaksayan
navanita viliptangoo manthanam damacaharat
Krishna then got up and broke to pieces the pot of curds that His mother was churning and started to eat the lumps of butter. In the whole confusion of stealing the butter, Krishna's body became smeared with butter and curds. Then with a cheeky face, He snatched away the churning rod and rope from His mother.
kalamalpam vihrtyaiva makrtim tamathapyadhat
devaki cati santusta vismita cabhavanmuhuh
So after some time of playing, enacting His childhood pastimes for Mother Devaki, Krishna abandoned that form of a child, but Devaki remained spell bound, stunned in ecstacy for some time.
tadaiva bhaismi ca samiksya madhavam
punah punarnutanametada krtim
nirmapayamasa tada tadakrtim
Even Rukmini Devi, who could see the numerous forms of the Lord in Dwaraka, was quite fascinated by this ever fresh and enthralling form of this tiny, naughty child, and so she asked Krishna to give her a form like this that she could always keep with her.
Junior Admar Swami (Visvapriya Tirtha Swami) also mentioned to me another story which tells of how the Deity came about.
Lord Krishna then called for Visvakarma, the architect of the demigods, who immediately came to that place, to satisfy the desire of Rukmini Devi. Krishna then gave him instructions to go to the sacred Kali Gandaki River in Northern Nepal and secure two large Saligram Silas and from those Saligrams, fashion the transcendental forms of Krishna and Balarama.
Actually a set were also made for Devaki, though smaller, and they returned to Vrindavan with Uddhava, so records say, but have been lost due to time.
After the Deities were fashioned, the Deities were first checked by Mother Yasoda to see if Their likeness was true. Then They were presented to Rukmini Devi, who worshipped them.
janan vidambayanti sa nityam tat pratimagatam
pujayamasa vibhavaih saksat tam pujayantyapi
Rukmini began to worship those Deities with all the formalities in addition to serving Krishna as her husband and Lord in person daily.
krishnavatarevasite phalgunoo dwarakasthitam
sthapayamasa tamarcamuttamam rukminivane
And so when Lord Krishna wound up His pastimes after the accomplishment of His mission, Arjuna deposited those deities in Rukmini Vana in the place called Dvaraka.
pratimani tam samaj ajrurdaivat samyatrikah kalau
As by the Lord's arrangement, those Deities that were buried at the advent of Kali Yuga, were unknowingly dug out and used as balast by the sailors and carried in the ship.
After the Krishna Deity was nicely washed off, Madhvacarya ordered that the deity be taken to his Mutt with great care. Alas, thirty of the strongest men in Madhva's Mutt couldn't even move the Deity an inch. Krishna made Himself just too heavy.
Madhva then, with great devotion, touched the Lord's feet and with both arms, cradled the Lord and himself carried Krishna to the Mutt. Krishna would only move for Madhva. The town was alive with talk of how Madhava came to Madhva. Soon many Vaishnavas came forward to eagerly give donations to have a small temple built for the Lord.
It is said that Madhva purposely chose not to build huge gopurams like many of the temples in the south. Instead he chose the simple pagoda style, traditional to the Karnataka area. All kinds of donations were made available for building, but this simple sannyasi kept everything nice but simple, and in proportion with Chandramulesvara and Ananta-Padmanabha temples.
Acarya Madhva then performed a fabulous installation ceremony for the Lord, and inaugurated and regulated the method and formula of the worship. Even the slightest detail he took into consideration, and after conducting the pujas himself, he trained others how to worship Udupi Krishna.
To those who know something of Deity worship, and who have a little appreciation for it performed nicely, Madhva's system and the punctuality and cleanliness is formidable.
He established sixteen pujas daily, though generally fourteen are considered as the main pujas for the Lord, which I will now outline.
(1) Nirmalaya Visarjana Puja - at 4.00 am. The door is opened and Madhva would go and take his bath is Madhva Sarovara, and after performance of different proksanas, acaman, nyasa, tilak and pranayam in the room adjacent to the actual Deity room, he would enter the shrine. Then, accompanied by the chanting of sacred mantras, the flowers, tulasi and sandalwood paste from the previous day are removed before Arundaya when the sun shows first signs of coming up. At this time he would ring the hand bell. All the ornaments are removed at this time, then one can see that first sight that Madhva saw (the churning rod in the Lord's hand and butter in the other). Seeing the Lord at this time is known as the Visvarupa Darshan.
Then five services are performed for the Lord. Tulasi manjari buds and thick sandalwood paste are offered, and then a naivedyam (small food offering) consisting of ground nuts and curds, ginger, jaggery (date palm sugar), tender coconut, and betal leaf and nut. Then there is a mangal arati offered in a round plate.
(2) Usahkala Puja (dawn puja occurs between 4 - 6 am). Madhvacarya pours water over the deity from two silver pots and Krishna is completely washed. Again Tulasi buds and sandalwood paste are offered. Krishna is then given his naivedyam of sweet rice payasam, curds, tender coconut water, bananas, coconut, betal leaf and betal nuts.
(3) Aksaya Patra Puja and Go Puja. Madhvacarya established this principle of using the aksaya patra for mass prasadam distribution daily. This aksaya patra was originally given by Surya's son, Vivaswan to Dharmaraja (Maharaja Yudhisthira) when he started the exile after the gambling match with Duryodhana. Whilst in exile Draupadi used it to cook for different rsis and sages. Madhva personally gave this pot and ladle for the Lord's puja and blessed them that this annadana, mass prasadam distribution, will go on in this holy place forever.
At this time the daily go-puja is performed and the tiny local cows of Udupi-Krishna's goshalla are led in for Krishna's pleasure. They are given free run of the temple room and a selected cow is then formally worshiped. Following each puja there is naivedyam. This one for Gopal Krishna consists of fried rice, laddhu made of local country sugar, 'gaur', banana etc. First it is offered to Krishna the cowherd boy, and then his prasadam is offered to the cows. During this time the aksaya patra is also worshipped by arati ceremony, offering of lamps.
(4) Pancamrtabhiseka Puja. Madhvacarya established that first the conchshell be worshipped as Pancajanya, then five substances are poured from that conch over the Deity of Krishna. First is a conch full of pure cow's ghee which is poured on the head of the Lord, and the golden nectar flows down to His feet. Then milk, then yogurt, then honey, then sugar water. Then pulp of banana and tender coconut water are poured over the body of the Lord. At this time thirty two tender coconuts are used to make sufficient water for the bathing, and rinsing.
After this puja, sandalwood paste, flower petals and Tulasi buds are offered. Then the Lord again takes His meal, this time or rice, coconut followed by betal leaf and betal nut. This again is followed by arati of offering lamps circulating eight times around the Lord's body.
(5) Udvartana Puja. At this time the body of Krishna is thoroughly rubbed down by the aid of powder of green gram and hot water. This takes off any grease from the ghee or stickness of honey or sugar from the previous puja. Again after this puja is over, sandalwood paste, flowers and Tulasi buds are offered at the Lord's feet.
After Lord Krishna has taken His hot bath then he is offered hot rice, milk, butter and tender coconut, and again arati is performed, but this time offered from a large round plate.
(6) Kalasa Puja. So to follow the hot water bath, the Kalasa Puja is done. By mantra and mudra the presiding Deities are invoked into two golden pots.
The Kalasas (pots) are then decorated and annointed with Tulasi and sandalwood paste. Then after om is chanted over the pots and the mula mantra and Krishna mantra, the kalasa is worshipped. Then the worship of the pitha (sitting place) and again naivedyam of rice is offered. Arati is again performed, and then that prasadam rice is given to the Lord's carrier, Garudadeva.
(7) Tirtha Puja. At this time cool water from all the sacred rivers which is held in a golden pot, is poured again over the Lord. At this time Madhva would chant the Krishna Yajurveda Purusa Suktam prayers. Then all that sacred "tirtha" water is collected up and Krishna is wiped dry with fine silken cloth. Again sandalwood paste, Tulasi buds, and flowers are offered, followed by naivedyam (food offerings) of pancakes, butter, date palm jaggery, thick pongal pudding, coconut, banana, betal leafs and beyal nuts. Then eight circles with a ghee lamp make a mangal arati again.
(8) Now the darshan is prohibited, up until Tirtha puja everything is done in public, but now the Alankar Puja is performed with restricted entry and vision. At this time all kinds of fabulous ornaments are offered to the Lord. depending on the particular day, Lord Krishna dresses in a different way, sometimes as Gopal Krishna, some days Vamanadeva, Kalki, Buddha, Kurma, Rama, etc. for instance, in April-May when Matsya appeared a special dress would adorn the Lord looking like the Matsyavatara, the body at least. The face of the Lord is never covered. From day to day throughout the year the Lord wears many different costumes. Some gold, some diamonds, some rubies, pearls, etc. The only forms the Lord doesn't dress in is Narasimha and Varaha, for to perform these pastimes His beautiful face would have to be covered by a mask, and this is never done here. On the day of Devi or the Mother Goddess, which is Fridays, Krishna takes such forms as Mohini, Sita, Rukmini, Satyabhama, and dressed in a sari gives darshana looking exquisitely beautiful.
After the Lord is appropriately dressed in the costume of the day, then His darshana is again available. As usual a nice offering of rice, pongal pudding, laddhus, flat rice, yogurt and kusumbari etc are offered, followed by sixteen waves around the Lord's body slowly with the ghee lamp, highlighting His form.
(9) Avasara Sanakadi Puja. When Madhvacarya installed Krishna in the Udupi Mutt, the Four Kumaras, headed by Sanak Kumara, came there and expressed their desire to worship Krishna at this time. Madhva leaves the deity room and the four Kumaras worship Krishna in private. Afterwards Madhvacarya comes back into the Deity room (inner sanctum) and offers foodstuffs and arati.
Sanaka, Sanandana, Sanatana and Sanatkumara are the originators of the sannyasa line of the Madhva priesthood, so Madhva continued like that, only sannyasis in the eight Udupi Mutts worship Lord Krishna here in Krishna Mutt. Those sannyasis are, to this day, chosen from all the inhabitants of Udupi. Six astrologers check a new born child's astrological chart and if there is any mention or indication of contact with woman or family life, then the candidate is rejected. Only those boys whose natal chart shows a life of celibacy, religiousity, devotion to God, purity, etc are considered as candidates for training. Then if the candidate is successful in his training, he will take sannyasa before he is seventeen years of age. One takes his order of sannyasa from a senior swami and then becomes the junior swami, usually the senior swami only has one initiated junior swami who will become his successor after he expires from this world. This is the system established in Udupi.
(10) Mahapuja (Raja Bhoga at lunch time). Mahapuja is the last puja of the morning. Before the puja again Madhva goes to the Sarovara to take his bath. Freshly bathed and annointed with fresh tilak, Madhva enters the inner sanctum. The drum known locally as Nagari is sounded to tell the town folk the puja is to begin, and everyone comes to see Madhva perform the puja.
Vishnu Sahasra Nama (thousand names of Vishnu) and many other Vedic hymns from the rg, Yajur, Sama and Artharva Vedas are chanted at this time. The Brhad Naradiya Purana verse Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare, Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare is also chanted. Madhva insisted that there be kirtan, the congregational chanting of the nakes of the Lord, for it is the yuga dharma.30
At the end of the archanas, a huge feast is offered to the Deity of Krishna consisting of fourteen seers (one seer equals about one kilo) of rice, sweet pudding 'paramanna', huggi, appa, vade cakkuli, gulloorige, hoolige, atirasa, laddu, laddige, pancakajjaya, milk, yugurt, fruits, coconut, betal leaf and betal nut. (For your pleasure I have included the preparations.)
Huggi - is a savoury preparation with rice, green gram dhal, spiced with tumeric, ginger and salt, boiled in water.
Appa - is a sweet preparation made from rice flour, jaggery (date palm sugar) and plaintain fruit fried in ghee.
Vade - again is a savoury preparation prepared from toor dhal, black gram dhal and salt, rolled into little cakes and fried in coconut oil.
Cakkuli - a very nice savoury preparation made from rice and black gram dhal, roasted, ground, then the flour is made into traditional cakkuli shapes and fried in coconut oil.
Gullorige - is made from semolina and is similar to pooris, white in colour, fried in ghee.
Holige - is a sweet preparation made from Bengal gram flour, maida (white flour), date palm sugar - jaggery. All this is mixed together and flattened like a chappati. In fact it is cooked on an iron plate like a chapati.
Atirasa - This is made from rice flour, jaggery, black pepper powdered and then fried in ghee and is a wonderful sweet preparation.
Laddige - is another sweet made from paddy flour (poha-flatrice) flakes, then mixed with cardamom powder, jaggery and made into round balls.
The specialty of Udupi is Panca Kajjaya - dry coconut flower scrappings - 'flakes of copra ' are then mixed with Bengal gram dhal then heated and powdered with local country sugar and spices, primarily cardamom.
Along with this there are two other preparation - a rice cake and rice kitri offered in silver bowls. During this offering ritual of samarpana reciters and musicians chant Madhva's Dwadasa Stotram and after the Lord has taken His lunch, various musical instruments and bells are played for the Lord's pleasure. This is a wonderful experience to witness.
After this Madhva worships the associates of Krishna such as Garuda and then Bhagirathi in an unseen form at Madhva Sarovara, then in the afternoon Madhva would sit in an adjacent room on his simhasana and have persons come and see him. Devotees who come would receive mantraksatam on their heads. Sometimes discussions would go on for an hour or so until the next puja at 4.00pm. During this time the Deity of Udupi Krishna is open for darshan (2.00pm - 4.00pm), unlike many Deities, Who, in a more relaxing and restful mood, take rest after lunch whilst the inauspicious muhuratas are prevalent. But not here in Udupi, as here Krishna is worshipped as a small boy, so at that time after lunch, small boys like to play.
At 4.30pm sharp Madhva would start his evening discourses on the Mahabharata and Ramayana. After worshipping these sacred books in the form of recitation, around 6.00pm Madhva would personally distribute prasadams to the devotees. Then whilst devotional musicians and singers would assemble in the candrasala singing songs about the Lord and His pastimes, Madhva would go for his evening bath in the sarovara tank to repare himself for Camara Seva, which is at 6.30pm. However before this there is Laxmi Puja of Krishna where Krishna is bathed in a shower (abhiseka) of pure gold coins.
(11) Camara Seva Puja. The functional (Utsava) deity of Udupi Krishna is brought out and placed before the main Deity, then the Utsava Deity is carried on a palanquin in procession to circulambulate Udupi Krishna. Baskets of fried rice are kept both sides of the Lord. Milk, fruits, coconut, betal leaf and nuts, laddus, etc are also placed before the Lord.
While this was happening, Madhvacarya would chant on his japa mala (beads) then to complete the ceremony he would come before the Lord and fan Him with gold handled camaras (yak tail whisks). One in each hand, he would fan Krishna for about five minutes, then go inside the inner sanctum and offer five upacaras (sandalwood paste, flowers and Tulasi buds, incense, lamps and foodstuffs - naivedyams). The foods consist of the fried rice and date palm sugar (jaggery) kept in the baskets.
(12) Ratri Puja (night worship). At the time of entering the deity room and after performing acamana, then Madhva would chant one hundred and eight names of Krishna and offer nice foodstuffs consisting of tamarind rice, pancakes, tender coconut, coconut pancakajjaya, then betal leaf and betal nut tambula. Then all the different kinds of arati flames would be waved before the Lord - camphor on a plate, ghee lamps, lamps with kusa grass and ghee, some of five wicks, some seven, some nine, some in the shape of the Kurma (tortoise). (The remanants of these foodstuffs are spread on banana leaves between rows of lamps and are formally offered to the Mukhya prana Deity.
(13) Mantapa Puja - Astavadhana Puja. Again the small functional, festival Deity of Krishna is brought out, and in sankirtan with the accompaniment of musical insturments the Lord goes into a cradle and in a loving mood Madhvacarya rocks the cradle. Again a nice offering of fried rice is given to the Lord as the musicians play and the devotees chant. Then the arati is performed again.
Flute seva is next as the Utsava Deity of the Lord enjoys, now in a palanquin and circulambulates the Deity room where Udupi Krishna resides. The devotees follow whilst one devotee plays the flute for the Lord's pleasure. At this time all the devotees, according to their particular service mood, offer eight kinds of sabda seva, that is, each chants according to the proper swara or meter the mantras from each of the following to glorify the Lord, very melodiously. There is Rg Veda Seva, Yajur Veda Seva, Sama Veda Seva, Atharva Veda Seva, Vedanta Seva, Itihasa Seva, Purana Seva and San-gita Seva.
(14) Ekanta Seva - Sayanutsava Puja. This service is more of a private affair for the Lord. The small functional utsava Deity is now placed back into a cradle and is taken to and placed on a small bed in His private 'bed room' specifically reserved for the Lord. With the Lord in the cradle, Madhvacarya gently rocks it whilst he sings lullabies to the deity there. Such is the parental mood. The Lord now takes rest in private.
Cooked down milk, sandalwood paste, sandalwood oil, Tulasi leaves, nutmeg, cloves and fragrant perfumes are now placed before the Lord in His cradle and a final arati is performed. Then Madhva would return to his simhasana seat in the room nearby and distribute prasadam to the devotees, guests and pilgrims. This he would do until quite late, during which time he would personally strike up discussions with the assembled devotees.
The time is now after 11.00 pm, and the temple itself is now locked for the night, but as for Madhvacarya, he would talk sometimes all night, and still be the first up and about in the morning to start the pujas. When Madhvacarya slept he would only rest for one or two hours and arise fresher than those who had slept all night. Madhva would rise around 2 am to start his next day.
In this way Shripada Madhvacarya dedicated his whole life to serving the Lord, every hour of the day he was engaged in pure devotion to the Lord. As with everything that he did, it attracted the minds of everyone, and more and more devotees gathered around him.
Madhva supervised and oversaw all the activities of the new Mutt, taking an active leading role, and naturally everyone followed. His cleaning, cooking, everything was spotless. Arrangements for foot baths for pilgrims was made so as no-one would enter the temple without washing his own legs and feet.
Udupi Krishna looked out of his small temple room overlooking the Madhva Sarovara tank so He knew who had washed or not. Apparently Madhva purposely made the temple room small so that large crowds would not gather in a roudy or raucous fashion. Instead in a mood of awe and reverence, they would file in to see Krishna Who had come from Dwaraka.
Madhva insisted that the temple be washed meany times daily, and to this day one can still see the high standard that he set. Some of Madhva's standards for cleanliness are that one must bathe at least three times daily and certainly before puja. A plunge bath in Madhva Sarovara in the waters of the Ganges was the best. After taking one's bath and washing one's cloth, one puts on fresh cloth. Unwashed cloth, even silk, he would not tolerate - everyday it had to be freshly washed.
Due to Madhvacarya's need for preaching, he started to train some of his intimate disciples how to worship the Lord properly, all the little things - how to avoid touching one's fingernails, which are to considered like dead skin, to pure pure water that is to be used in puja or for one's own acaman, proksana-cleansing. He arranged that if some impurity was found in the disciple that he had placed in charge, the disciple had to purify it by fasting to absolve it.
MADHVA CURES FRIEND'S HEADACHE
During the time when Madhva stayed in Udupi to establish the process of Deity worship, a funny incident happened. In Madhva's childhood there was one boy who was the son of Madhva's teacher, who was very dear to Madhva. He once came to Madhva because he had a severe headache, and Madhva blew into his ear and cured that headache.
At this particular time this boy was making arrangements for a very large fire sacrifice, in which he planned to spend vast quantities of money, feed thousands of brahmins, and perform this yajna to a grand scale. Madhvacarya's younger brother, who was very qualified in the conclusions of the Vedic rituals, was asked to be the hotri (officiating priest) for the yajna, to which he accepted.
The day came to start and the pandal pavillion was erected. All the preliminary pujas had been performed, all participating had been identified by the tying of Kankabandanam strings to their right wrists. Everyone, the assistants and so many brahmins who had assembled there, were just ready to perform their individual functions, when suddenly out of the air came one envious brahmin from the Jaraghatita Gotra by the name of Maradittaya, who had been festering and conspiring to spoil the yajna. It is suggested that he was a dikshitar of the smarta brahmin community and he wielded a very influential voice with people in general. Narayana Panditacarya in Madhva Vijay however refers to him as a second Jarasandha who tried to stop the rajasurya sacrifice of Yudhisthira.
As previously mentioned, the Bhavisya Purana records the meeting of Madhvacarya and Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu (the son of Saci) during his return to Udupi via Bengal. Madhvacarya received some very interesting points from Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. The Lord gave instruction on the avoidence of animal sacrifies, pointing out in 19.49-62 that He didn't accept the offerings of poor animals into the fire as in previous yugas, and that this was not the way to worship Him. Madhvacarya accepted this and from this time on, instigated a few changes to make the new non-violent yajna in accordance with sastra. Vast changes couldn't have been made at this time for the philosophical evolution hadn't progressed very far as yet (see my 'Setting The Scene' section). Madhvacarya performed the necessary changes that Shri Krishna Chaitanya (the Personality of Godhead) told him to do.
These reforms and ceremonial changes, such as the offerings of 'flour-made sheep' instead of the previous live sheep of Vedic sacrifice Pishtapasuyajna. Pishtapasu Yajna never involved killing animals in previous days, 31but had become in vogue due to the wicked desires of meat eaters, but undoubtedly this kind of yajna was obviously what the smarta Maraditaya objected to. He wanted to offer animals into the fire and protested like anything at Madhvacarya's method, but Madhva stood his ground as usual, and in the company of the King of the country of Balakanya and his court pandits, Madhvacarya explained from every known angle as to why the new system of yajnas should not be boycotted, but should, in fact, be supported, and how the smarta was just trying to support his own sense gratification by going directly against the injunctions of the Yuga Dharma.
According to Shrimad Bhagavatam (11.28.8-9), "One who has properly understood the process of becoming firmly fixed in theoretical and realized knowledge, as described in this chapter entitled Jnana Yoga, by the Supreme Lord Himself, does not indulge in material criticism or praise. Like the sun, he wanders freely throughout this world - by direct perception, logical deduction, scriptural testimony and personal realization, one should know that this world has a beginning and an end and so is not he ultimate reality. Thus one should live in this world without attachment to sense gratification."
The Lord has stated what kind of sacrifices are for what Yugas and even the Personality of Godhead appeared as Buddha to do away with such dramatical shows that they had the nerve to call yajnas, in the same way if God has stated that He dosen't accept such rituals, then we may well ask, who was this yajna refered to by the materialistic smarta brahmin meant to please? If I ask for water and someone brings me milk, that person may argue that milk is very nice - but it is not what I asked for, so it cannot be considered as service, as the word service means serving that which is required by the person who has made some request.
Many arguments were presented and Madhva, and proven to all that were there, that what he was saying was right. The court pandits replied, "........everything he says conforms to sruti, smrti, Puranas, Pancaratra, etc. He has no personal mundane motive for performing activity."
Then the yajna continued, being sanctioned by the Balakanya King, all the pandits and local brahmins. All the local shop keepers who were previously told by the smarta to withhold certain essentials for the yajna now brought them as donations to the best of Vaishnava brahmins.
Madhva gave all the necessary instructions about karma in action, and acting in a way free from entanglement in karma himself, everyone could see that he was acting freely on the liberated platform. Madhva Vijay (9.52) confirms this by stating how everyone was completely captivated by Madhvacarya's deep knowledge and realization of this subject. The Demigods resounded with melodious chants of - Oho vaha ho ! O how wonderous!
Madhvacarya had been in Udupi, as one can see by his achievements in the form of Shri Krishna Mutt, for quite some time, and now he decided to again go outside of Karnataka to preach, for his mission was feeling more urgent than ever.
MADHVA'S SECOND TOUR TO BADRI
Madhva Vijay is the accepted authority on the life of Madhvacarya, and although others throughout the length and bredth of Bharata Bhumi (India) made diaries at the time on the Acarya's movements, Madhva Vijaya gives the most insight into Madhva's life.
Taking a few notes from Indian history which points out that during Madhva's second tour he visited many places of pilgrimage en-route to Badri. Madhvacarya and his party were quite amazing. Altogether the main party comprised of some fifty sannyasis and a number of devoted householders and brahmacaris. They travelled alone, sadhu sanga, in their association of devotees. There were no hired hands, no extravagence, just fifty simple sannyasis, a few household men, and brahmacaris.
Madhva insisted that his disciples not only preach with dynamic valour as he did, but also be expert in singing to satisfy the Lord, composing prayers for the Lord's pleasure, dance, (for they were not dry impersonalists), and also be able to wrestle. Needless to say, Madhva had a burly build, like a bull, and all of his followers were healthy able-bodied men, but not fat.
It is suggested that on the basis of the monarchy at the time, chronologically speaking, and in regard to some of the areas that Madhva passed through and the names of Kings and kingdoms mentioned, it must have been between 1260 and 1271 that Madhvacarya made his second tour to Badri. At this time there is mention of the name of one Yadava Dynasty king in Madhva Vijay Canto 10.4-7 whose name was Iswara Deva, sometimes known as Mahadeva, and he ruled at Devagiri in the kingdom of Kandesh, now modern day Maharastra state. This king, who is known to have a strange mood of charity and was renowned for usurping the goods of others in the name of charity, still he would often plant trees, and dig wells and lakes, or rather "engage" others in that "charity work."
When Madhva and his party came by this miserly king Iswara Deva, the king thought he could engage all these strong healthy men in digging his lake. However, when the King's men stopped the party and told them that the King had put a toll on anyone who wished to pass through his kingdom, which was that they had to spend some time digging out the earth for the proposed lake. Madhva never missed a move, he personally convinced the King that due to their being Vaishnava ascetics, they had no idea of how to dig the ground. He said, "If your Majesty would be so kind as to enlighten us by showing each of us what to do, for we are unskilled in this work. Please show us how the digging should be done."
The King himself, full of brainless enthusiasm jumped down into the hole and personally showed each of Madhva's fifty men how to dig out the lake. By the sharp intellect of Madhvacarya, he tricked the King into digging out the whole section that the King had ascribed for Madhva and his men. The devotees were amazed.
Unfortunately though it cost Madhva time which really he didn't want to waste. Madhvacarya had no business hanging around the rich or royal, aristocratic or influential circles, simply he is a devotee and only took interest in one's devotion to the Lord. In Madhva Vijay at the end of the Ninth Canto, it points out how even obligations to family, gotra, and any other material things, Madhva gave up to satisfy Lord Hari, and so in the mood of a Vaishnava ascetic monk, he travelled quite freely without hindrance or attachment.32
After leaving that place Madhvacarya and his party pushed on further north to reach the southern shore of the Ganges. During this time much of the North of India was completely ruled by the Mohamedans, though so far Madhva travelled through the Kingdoms of the pious kings of Dravidadesa (South India), but now he had reached their northern boundary. The boatmen, who in peaceful times would normally take the travellers across the river, had been given orders that no brahmins or followers of Sanatana Dharma, Vaishnavas were allowed to cross the river which was too wide to swin across and too deep to walk across. Madhva offered to pay the regular price to the boatmen, and even tried to bribe them by giving them more than the normal price. However these boatmen feared for their lives, and so no boats were available. The boatmen told Madhvacarya and his party, that the Muslim ruler on the northern bank stated that any non-Islamic traveller would face death if he so much tries to cross the river.
Hearing this Madhvacarya told his followers to hold onto his garments and form a chain. This they did, and the incarnation of, and the plenary portion of Vayu the wind god then made his whole party light enough to walk on water.
On the northern bank, the Muslim ruler came from his tent to see what all the excitement was coming from the mouths of his men. Upon seeing the party of fifty Vaishnava sannyasis walking across the surface of the Ganges river, the Muslim ruler fainted, and upon coming to, and rubbing his eyes, looking again he fainted once more. This happened seven times, for Madhvacarya and his party crossed the mighty waters of the Ganges just as the way they crossed the ocean of birth and death, which is compared to a calf's hoofprint for the pure devotee.
Trying to deter Madhva and his party from coming ashore, the soldiers of the Muslim leader, shouting to each other to kill the infidel sannyasis before they reached shore. It was an increadible sight, the Muslimad fully armed, and turbans upon their heads, stood up to their necks deep in the Ganges, thrusting their spears in the direction of the sannyasis.
Madhva Vijay (10.11) records Madhva saying, "Certainly it is strange that all of the army has come down into the waters of the Ganges to try to stop a handful of mendicants. Why do you do this? We are of no threat to you. We are coming with a desire of meeting with your king, now allow us to pass and meet him. It is strange that you act like fools simply wishing to quarrel with us."
Insisting on meeting with the ruling Sultan Madhwa strode towards his tent, finally amid all the niose, the Sultan came there to see what was happening. At the first sight of Madhva's form, he was taken aback.
It is suggested in Padmanabha's "Life and Teachings of Madhva" that the Sultan was the cousin of the notorious brahmin killer Alauddin. This somewhat peaceful Muslimad by the name of King Balban, otherwise known as Jalaludin Khiliji, who had just come to the throne at seventy years of age was not like his nefarious cousin. He was very learned and known for his kindness. When he saw Madhvacarya standing there he knew this was ordinary man. Strong and stout, with a beautiful hue of golden lustre, this giant of a man dressed in the cloth of a renounciate stood boldly before the Sultan.
The Sultan then enquired as to who this effulgent person was, and how he had walked across the wide Ganges River. "O fair faced one! How is it that you managed to pass by my ferocious army? How did you do this amazing feat of crossing the river? Why have you come here? Who are you? Why did you come across onto the soil of occupied land? Do you not know that you are risking death?"
Madhvacarya replied in chaste Turkish, saying how he was on his life's mission to spread the glories of the almighty God to all souls who will take to it. Now you occupy this land, previously it was occupied by another and another before them. Actually we are not the proprietor of this land, we are only here for a short time and that all of us are actually servants of the actual owner of this and every other land. Every honest man should come to terms with this understanding and dedicate his life to serving God.
After but a few words coming from the lotus mouth of Madhva, the Sultan was so impressed, in fact, he was charmed. Just like a tantric snake charmer standing amidst a thousand or more dangerous snakes, Madhvacarya fearlessly stood amidst the Muslimad army and preached this philosophy of Krishna consciousness to the Sultan, Jalaluddin Khilji. Confident that he was under the protection of Lord Krishna, Madhva had no need to fear. Tantrics, we have seen, sometimes sit amidst hundreds of cobras or scorpions without being poisoned due to the potency of their mantra siddhi or tantra siddhi, but in the case of our hero, it was his devotion to the Lord.
Just for the record, Madhvacarya's incantation was nuch stronger than any mechanical materialistic ritual, his purity, faith and natural compassion shone through. He was not talking to an oppressing war-lord, rather Madhva was talking to a spirit soul who now in the dress of a Muslim Sultan, could be engaged in the service of the Lord.
At this time the Sultan, realizing his mistake in hindering their travels, offered Madhva half of his province and told him that he would also make sure that Madhva and his party had safe passage through the rest of his territory on his travels north.
THE PROWESS OF MADHVA
Defeating the Dacoits
Certainly these were troubled times. There were many such war-lords and many dacoits, thuggies, gundas, etc. who waited on the roads and byways for unsuspecting travellers. Many times Madhva and his party would travel through thick jungle and via mountain ranges to directly and quickly keep heading true north.
One day as they travelled through the jungle, Madhva saw a group of thieves coming in the opposite. Madhva told his party to stay still - he had a plan. Usually when travellers saw gangs of dacoits they were petrified and would soon become easy pickings for the proffessional theives and murderers. Madhva, now putting his plan into action, took a handful of stones and put them into a piece of cloth, and when the thieves approached and declared their intent, Madhva threw to one of the dacoits the bundle wrapped in cloth the result was chaos, one thief not being able to trust another due to their mutual greed. This action of Madhva caused the dacoits to start fighting amongst themselves. Lusty and greedy, they tried to fulfill their desire to gain the 'bag of gold', as one took it from another and another snatched it from a third, amidst the confusion Madhva and party slipped off unnoticed.
Lust for gold and material possessions of others had brought them all together by mutual agreement, but it was a shallow working agreement with no sincerity, and it was also their downfall.
Madhva and party looked back from a safe distance before continuing the journey.
On another occasion as the party travelled along, they were apprehended by more than one hundred dacoits. From an external mundane view point, things looked very dangerous for Madhva and his fifty man party of peaceful ascetics monks. The air was very tense, one could say it could be cut with a knife. Suddenly out of nowhere one of Madhva's disciples, young boy Upendra Tirtha, rushed forward and wrestled a sword from the leader of the dacoits. Upendra Tirtha fought with the skill and courage of an experienced swordsman, though in his whole life he had never picked up so much as a stick, what to speak of a sword. The robbers, those who had not been killed or dismembered by the valiant Upendra Tirtha, fled for their lives.
Everyone of his godbrothers complimented him for his bravery. Madhva smiled knowingly, and Upendra humbly smiled, looking at Madhva. He had empowered his disciple to such a degree that all one hundred or more dacoits were no match for the humble Vaishnava sannyasi who suddenly had assumed the mood of Bhimasena. The tattva of Mukhyaprana had taken possession of the young sannyasis' arms and instead of Upendra Tirtha's arms, it was the mighty Bhima who fought to the dacoits death.
There was another occasion when another group of thieves lay in wait for Madhva and his party. The theives could see the party coming down the road, and so they waited in hiding, preparing their attack. As they lay in wait watching the ascetics approach, suddenly all of ascetics turned to a group of stones right before their eyes. Then as boulders the party started to move down the road towards the dacoits.
With fear and disbelief in their hearts, their minds confused and rubbing their eyes again and again, the theives watched the party of ascetics turn back into men. This was all too much for the theives. They knew somewhere unside these were not ordinary persons, and so in a more than humble mood, giving up their previous intent, they approached the party.
Madhvacarya, the guru, stood self-effulgent at the head of the party. The dacoits prostrated themselves at Madhva's feet and sincerely begged forgiveness for even thinking of such offensive things as robbing Vaishnava brahmins. Neddless to say, the dacoits of late turned over a new leaf by the influence of Acarya Madhva.
Whilst travelling through the thickest of Himalayan jungles one of the party, Satya Tirtha, a very dear and devoted disciples of Madhvacarya, was brutally attacked by a demon in the shape of a tiger, a huge and powerful beast nine feet long and weighing some 300 hundred kilos. The tiger leapt from the undergrowth onto poor Satya Tirtha as he led the party through the jungle. Trapping Satya Tirtha in his powerful jaws, and about to carry him off to a distant place to devour his body, Satya Tirtha, in a state of shock, suddenly felt the tiger collapse and found himself free from death's grip.
Madhvacarya had seen the attack, and with the speed of the wind, with a single thunderbolt like punch killed the tiger dead on the spot. He then released Satya Tirtha from the jaws of the huge male tiger. Satya Tirtha was in such a state of shock it took quite some time for him to realize that he was now safe, even though the Lord's holy name was on his tongue he didn't know if he was live or dead. The whole time he was absorbed internally in the holy name of the Lord, even up to when his mauled body was rescued by his ever loving guru.
SatyaTirtha was so grateful to the Lord of his his life, his guru, Madhvacarya, that this made him even more inspearable and devoted than ever before. He prayed for the boon that from that day on he never be separated from Shripada Madhvacarya.
After walking another couple of days or so, the peaks of the western Himalayas came into sight. The party pushed on to reach Badri high in the western Himalayas. After reaching Badri Madhva left his disciples there and crossed the ice-barrier to enter into Uttara Badri again to see his guru. Madhva felt ecstacy as he drew nearer and nearer to Vyasadeva's asrama, then as he reached that place he saw Shrila Vyasadeva sitting beneath a Badri tree surrounded by many disciples.
Madhva stayed there for some time in his absorbtion of being with Vyasadeva at Uttari Badri. He nearly forgot about life on the lowlands of Bharata Bhumi. Madhvacarya was now in his natural constitutional position, settled at home in his guru Shrila Vyasadeva's asrama.
During this visit to Uttara Badri Shrila Vyasadeva appointed Madhva with the task of explaining the essential meanings of the Mahabharata. This great epic, dealing with the the battle between the two royal familes, the Pandavas and the Kauravas, is considered the fifth Veda and an essential scripture as there are so many good examples and instructions to come from it.
Madhva, on the authorization of Shrila Vyasadeva, points out in his Mahabharata-Tatparya-Nirnaya, (2.3.6) that much of the original texts had now fallen prey to others interpolations, missing out some important meanings, so now Madhva had been given the task to re-establish Mahabharata as it is. Mahabharata-Tatparya-Nirnaya is in thirty two chapters, following the Mahabharata with constructive critique of Madhva. The first two chapters deal with Madhva's exposition of the philosophy and the poltics of the Mahabharata, as well as Madhva's appearance, mission, dwaita philosophy, etc. Chapters three to nine are devoted to a critical summary of the Ramayana, explaining from Mukhyaprana's (Hanuman and Madhva's) point of view of how Rama and Sita were and are all-perfect, and that any seemingly compromises that one may see, such as Rama's lamenting or the pastime of not trusting Sita, were just a dramatical play on Rama's part to invoke the emotions of His devotees. Also Madhva introduces an incident, the encouter of Parasurama and a demon called Atula, and elaborates on the pastime unknown by most. Madhva as usual quotes many authorities to substantiate his statements. Chapters ten to thirtytwo one finds the actual story of the Mahabharata, elaborately dealt with following Madhva's critique 'I was there - I know' kind of mood.
This great work of Madhva closes with his comments about the advent of Kali Yuga being the door opening for the rise of the philosophies of Buddhism, Jainism and Mayavada, and that now he himself had come to set things right. This is where Madhva himself mentions his own advent, putting the date as 4300 Kali Yuga, which corresponds to 1199 AD. Mahabharata-Tatparya-Nirnaya (32.13) and Chapter 9.100 also confirms this using the same reference.
Madhvacarya stayed for some time in the Vaikuntha atmosphere of Vyasadeva's asrama, studying, gaining further realizations at the lotus feet of Badarayana. Shrila Vyasadeva then gently reminded his best of disciples, who was going from strength to greater strength, and though his body was growing older, for him it increased his lustre with a mystic maturity, dignity and grace.
Madhva bounded down into the foothills and onto the plains of Northern India. Surely he is not a mere mortal! He took his disciples to Hastinapura and showed them the sights of the political intrigue of the Pandava-Kaurava war, telling stories in places which again only a Pandava would know, inside stories about Bhima's escapades, lifting and fighting bull elephants, and other feats of valour. They stayed in Hastinapura (Delhi) for the four months of the rainy season of that year.
Madhvacarya purposely stayed away from the crowded banks of the river, however news spread like an uncontrolled wild fire that Madhva Muni was staying in Hastinapura with his party of men, and many a pious soul came to visit him.
On one occasion whilst the 'Ganges' was in flood, Madhva's disciples wanted to cross to the other bank, but due to crowds of people there were no sufficient boats to transport the sannyasis across. Knowing Madhva's superhuman powers, the disciples neglected the tradition and this time they neither remembered Hanuman who jumped across to Lanka, nor Bhima who just for fun would swim the mighty 'Ganges' and play in her waters. Instead they remembered Madhva, who is of that same nature as Anjaneya (Hanuman) and Bhima.
All the disciples were waiting and waiting intently thinking of their guru to come there and help. Just before sunset on that day Madhva returned to them from his studies and in front of everyone's eyes, the acarya collected all the sannyasis together as before, and they all walked across the flooded turbulent waters of the holy river. Everyone who was there was astounded. The King, the local people, the pilgrims, the fishermen and the boatmen all saw the fifty man party headed by the plenary portion of the wind god - Vayu - casually walk on the surface of the water as though it were a footpath, that is without their clothing becoming so much as damp, what to speak of wet, they safely crossed to the other bank.
The King and all the others assembled offered obeisances in a respectful and wonder-struck atmosphere. Madhva then at this place on the bank of the sacred river gave discourses on his Mahabharata Tatparya-Nirnaya, giving personal insight into the activities that happened some four thousand years before in that same place of Hastinapura.
As Madhva glorified Lord Shri Krishna, the Pandavas and that place of Hastina, Mother Ganges herself appeared before the sannyasi acarya, Madhva in her personified form with folded hands and head bowed slightly forward in respect. For those whose eyes are bound to the happenings of this material world the only visible thing to be seen was a small pool of pure Gangajal bubbling just in front of Madhvacarya's lotus feet. For Madhva and a few others who had spiritual vision, they could see the chaste Mother Ganges personified standing with folded hands, head looking down at Madhva's feet, with her hair parted in the centre and chastely braided at the back, her head covered so as not to entice. She just had to come to offer her respects to the empowered representative of the Supreme Personality of Godhead Lord Krishna, from Whose feet Gangadevi herself gets her purificatory powers. Madhva himself carries Lord Krishna's lotus feet by means of his mind, body and words, and gives them to everyone through his pure philosophy, in this way he is a walking place of pilgrimage.
It was just after this that Madhvacarya bid Ganga Mayi her leave, after firmly propounding the Vaishnava conclusions, namely who is God, and what our relationship is with Him and how to attain that etc. They then left Hastinapura, and the party walked along the course of the Ganges, visiting many holy places until they reached Benares. Benares (or Kasi, as it is refered to in Madhva Vijay 10.37) was a great Mayavadi stronghold.
Madhva had a light playful mood at this time, but non compromising, seeing time for a challenge, he put his disciples on the spot. Sometimes he would hear them say a little boastfully of what physical feats they could perform, their wrestling prowess.
Madhva Vijay (10.38) says, "You who consider yourselves able, come and fight with me. Don't hold back your strength out of some sentimental affection. It is not befitting our renounced order." With these words Madhva dragged to the floor fifteen of his most able bodied men. "Come on, get up. Let's see who has some ability to fight then." he said, laughing loudly. His disciples couldn't do anything out of sentiment, so Madhva got them off the sentimental plane by his physical prowess, but now the defeated disciples fearfully begged the acarya as follows:
"Our dear spiritual master, please don't attack us again. we are no match for you. even your fingers, what to speak of your arms are like the heaviness of Mount Meru. You have practically killed us all in but a few seconds. Please be kind to us and forgive our false pride and leave us alone."
Madhva and party stayed for quite some time in benares quite frequently smashing the impersonalistic philosophies that riddled this town. On one such occasion an Advaitin monk of the name Amarendra Puri came to challenge Madhva with the statement, "Can you show how karma or activity that is supported by knowledge can give one salvation, what is your explanation of this?"
Madhva threw one question back to the Mayavadi: "If you supposedly have knowledge then surely this subject would be understood by you - if not, the question does no arise nor does liberation, for by negation of activity, as your school does, you will still keep yourselves soundly entangled in the material world. Anyway, seeing that you have asked, in Bhagavad-gita (4.14) Lord Shri Krishna says,
na mam karmani limpanti
na me karma-phale sprha
iti mam yo 'bhijanati
karmabhir na sa badhyate
"There is no work that affects me (Krishna); nor do I (Krishna) aspire for the fruits of action. One who understands this truth about Me (Krishna) also does not become entangled in the fruitive reactions of work."
evam jnatva krtam karma
purvair adi mumuksubhih
kuru karmaiva tasmat tvam
purvaih purvataram krtam
"All the liberated souls in ancient times acted with this understanding of My (Krishna's) transcendental nature. Therefore you should perform your duty, following in their footsteps."
kim karma kim akarmeti
kavayo 'py atra mohitah
tat te karma pravaksyami
yaj jnatva moksyase 'subhat
"Even the intelligent are bewildered in determining what is action and what is inaction. Now I shall explain (Krishna says) to you what action is, knowing which you shall be liberated from all misfortune."
karmano hy api boddhavyam
boddhavyam ca vikarmanah
akarmanas ca buddhavyam
gahana karmano gatih
"The intricacies of action are very hard to understand. Therefore one should know properly what action is, what forbidden action is, and what inaction is."
karmany akarma yah pasyed
akarmani ca karma yah
sa buddhiman manusyesu
sa yuktah krtsna-karma krt
"One who sees inaction in action, and action in inaction, is intelligent among men, and he is in the transcendental position, although engaged in all sorts of activities."
yasya sarve samarambhah
jnanagni dagdha karmanam
tam ahuh panditam budhah
"One is understood to be in full knowledge whose every endeavour is devoid of desire for sense gratification. He is said by sages to be a worker for whom the reactions of work have been burned up by the fire of perfect knowledge."
If one is serious about liberation from material bondage, one has to understand the distinctions between action, inaction, and unauthorized actions. One has to apply oneself to such an analysis of action, reaction and perverted actions because it is a very difficult subject matter to understand. One who has learned this perfectly serves Lord Shri Krishna with mind, body and world, and in that way associates with the Lord directly. Otherwise even the most intelligent will be bewildered.
brahmarpanam brahma havir
brahmagnau brahmana hutam
brahmaiva tena gantavyam
"A person who is fully absorbed in Krishna consciousness is sure to attain the spiritual kingdom (Vaikuntha or Goloka) because of his full contribution to spiritual activities, in which the consummation is absolute and that which is offered is of that same spiritual nature."
Just as for one who is suffering from a disease of the bowels due to an over indulgence in milk products, so the disease is easily cured by taking another milk product, curds (yogurt).
So in the same way Lord Shri Krishna is completely spiritual and the rays of His transcendental body are called the Brahmajyoti, Krishna's own spiritual effulgence. Everything that exists is situated in that Brahmajyoti, but it is temporarily covered by a material cloud which is pertaining to material sense gratification.
When that cloud is removed by acting in full Krishna consciousness one comes to the liberated stage, but not to become one with the effulgence or the owner of the effulgence. Instead the devotee, the Vaishnava, surrenders himself to being one with the Lord's desire or will whilst still remaining an individual.
In that way understanding what is Brahman, but knowing difference, one satisfies the Supreme Lord by the sacrifice of those activities.
In yajna it is considered that the fire is Brahma, the offering is also Brahman and the offerer, the hotri is also Brahman, but it is not that of exclusive oneness. For by the strange philosophy of Kevaladvaita - exclusive oneness, if one pours the ghee and grains onto the hotri (the priest) or puts the hotri into the fire, the same result will not be achieved as if the hotri pours the ghee and grains into the fire-brahman.
Differences are there. Knowing this, all kinds of activities performed for the Lord's service can bepurified by one in actual spiritual consciousness.
Spiritual consciousness which is aligned with the Lord, the contributor who is a devotee of the Lord, the contribution which originally is the Lord's potency anyway and is now properly re-united with the Lord, the consumption thereof by the Lord and distribution of His remnants or utilization of facilities for Him, the priest who conducts the procedure and the result, Krishna consciousness, in all there differences are one with the Lord the Param Brahman or Supreme Personality of Godhead.
In ways like this Madhvacarya completely set Kasi alight as Hanuman set fire to Lanka roaming the city freely. He samshed all the objectives of Mayavada philosophy and re-established Lord Krishna or Narayan to be supreme.
eko vai narayana
asin na brahma na
isano napo nagni-
samau neme dyav-aprthivi
na naksatrani na suryah
In the beginning of the creation there was only the Supreme Personality of Godhead Narayan. There was no Brahma, no Siva, no fire, no moon, no stars in the sky, no sun.
Maha Upanisad 1
Madhva left no stone unturned. Stating how the Supreme Personality of Godhead Lord Shri Narayana actually creates, maintains and destroys the entire creation and permiates it also in the form of Paramatma. Actually Narayana is the original Personality. He was there before everyone.
Narayan Upanisad 1 states,
atha puruso ha vai
narayano 'kamayata prajah srjeti
narayanad brahma jayate
narayanad prajapatih prajayate
narayanad indro jayate
narayanad astau vasavo jayate
narayanad ekadasa rudra jayante
"Then the Supreme Personality Narayana desired to manifest living entities. From Narayan Brahma is born, and from Narayan the patriarchs are also born. From narayana Indra is born, from Narayana the eight Vasus are born, from Narayana the eleven Rudras are aborn, and from Narayana the twelve Adityas are born."
He is the original, the Adi Purusa, He is superior without an equal and has a spiritual form made of eternity, and bliss and He is all knowing.
Madhva, established the authority of the Lord second to none and equal to none, from every possible angle, we are small dependant jiva souls and Narayana is the omnicient, independnt omnipotent Supreme Soul.
Hearing this the small soul Amarendra Puri, who was thinking himself big soul, had to concede to being an insignificant tiny jiva soul at the feet of the servant of the greatest soul, Narayana. Not being able to refute Madhva's strong stand the follower of the school destined for hellish suffering due to their offences, had to concede ultimate defeat.
In Hrsikesa (Rsikesha) a Sankarite surprised everyone with his hospitality and friendly and respectful ways towards Madhva. Not only did he bring alms for the acarya, but also insisted that Madhva eat at his house and thus purify him and his family. He greeted Madhva with full kumbha ceremony and offered all respects. Indeed this was very unusual for a follower of Sankara in Hrsikesa (Rsikesha).
Actually this Saivite had a dream, and it was made clear to him that this Madhvacarya was not an ordinary person but was the protector of the Vedas and direct representative of God. He then gave up his old Saivite ways and also became a follower of Acarya Madhva.
From Hrsikesa, Madhva and his party went to the holy place of pilgrimage known as Kuruksetra. At this place Madhva unmistakably proved himself to be the amsa of Vayu who previously appeared as Bhimasena and who fought like a thousand men at that same sacred place of Kuruksetra.
Madhvacarya took Satyatirtha and the others to the many places that Bhima had his valiant pastimes. Going to all the different places around Kuruksetra Jyoti Tirtha, the lakes created by Parasurama, the place where Bhisma gave up his life, etc. Madhva however showed a special insight into those places of the pastimes of Bhimasena the powerful club wielding Pandava.
Satyatirtha asked Madhva is he knew where Bhima's club was, to which Madhva said, "Dig there and it will be revealed." After digging for quite some time, some five or seven feet, they came across the club. None could lift it, save and except Madhva, who carried it with comfrot and familiar ease. Madhva then ordered that it be replaced back into the ground and recovered over. This they did and there it stays.
Madhva revealed many places known by him that were used in previous times by Bhima, including Bhima's eating plate, and the place where Duryodhana was finally killed. Only Bhima could know these exact places, only the tattva of Mukhyaprana that is.
From Kuruksetra the party headed south again, ceasing their wanderings in the north. After many days walking they reached Isupata Ksetra which in the region given to Lord Parasurama. At that place Madhva meditated on Lord Narayana, the husband of the Goddess of Fortune in the form of Parasurama.
This whole area, from modern day Nasik in Maharastra down to the most southern tip on the western penninsular of Bharata (India) was given to Lord Parasuram by Kasyapa Muni, and so there are many places of pilgrimage in this area. Madhva felt very at home in the Parasurama Ksetra worshipping his Lord there.
From there Madhva pushed on to Goa, and in Goa an amazing feat was witnessed by all. One local king came and presented Madhva with one thousand rajakeli bananas. A rajakeli banana is a plaintain, these were normal full sized ripe rajakeli plaintains, each one and a half feet in length and ten inches in circumference. Actually they were given in a light joking mood hearing of Madhva's gastronomic reputation. But now Madhva even surprised those who joked by eating all one thousand plaintains without so much as having a full belly.
Again in Goa a short time later it is recorded in Madhva Vijay 10.52, that a brahmin named Sankara brought as an offering to Madhva four thousand big lustrous and juicy plaintains and also thirty gallons of milk. Madhva ate the four thousand plaintains and unceremoniously washed them down with the thirty gallons of milk. From time to time Madhva liked to do things like this just to leave the mark of his wonderous pastimes on a place.
Sometimes due to these extraordinary feats some persons would become very envious, in one such incident one rascal went to the ruler of this part of Goa and complained about Madhva, his party, and his feats. The ruler sent his men to arrest Madhva and his party, but as usual Madhva was always one step ahead. Right before everyone's eyes Madhva disappeared with all his party minutes before the hostile soldiers arrived to arrest them. The ruler gave up on the idea right there and then, knowing well he could not restrain the wind.
Madhva and his party reappeared at their camp, but soon left that place to go further south.
At the place known as Pasupa (Bajapey) local people requested Madhvacarya to sing, as they had heard stories saying that the acarya's singing could do unusal things to those who had the good fortune of hearing it. By Madhva's purity of chanting the holy names of the Lord, it was rumoured animals and humans would forget their bodily differences and would dance and chant together. There were all kinds of stories where men would embrace tigers, elephants would embrace tigers, etc, completely forgetting that under normal conditions one would be food for the other. During the times when Madhva would recite of chant or touch someone, those objects or persons in the vicintiy would become transcendentally transformed by the pure spiritual potency of Shripad Madhvacarya Bhagavatapada.
Just like on this one occasion at Pasupa, in the assembly of hundred of people, he took a few seeds in the palm of his hand and began to sing melodiously to them. His singing was magical, hypnotic with a range that no mundane songster could even imagine, what to speak of imitate.
Just as when Lord shri Krishna would play His flute the Gopis would completely forget themselves, their husbands, housework, crying babies whom they were feeding, and they would just go to Krishna, so in the same way, depending on what he wanted to do, different things would react in different ways, reciprocating with him. Like these seeds in Madhva's hand - as he sung to them they started to move about in his hand. As the singing became more intense everyone could see little sprouts emanating from each seed. right before their eyes they saw the seeds sprout, grow into trees, and bear fruit.
Defying all laws of material nature, Madhva appealed to the spirit soul within each and every body, be it plant, bird, mammal, animal or human.
Madhvacarya amazed the crowd, who were more than satisfied by the way that he had confirmed the stories they had heard, as being true.
Madhva and his party of sannyasis then left that place for the short journey back to Udupi. Everyone was so pleased to see the party back after so long.
Madhva Vijay closes Canto 10 verse 56 saying how Madhvacarya and his disciples filled and nourished the people of Udupi with stories of their adventures with the acarya over the last year or so. Narayana Panditacarya who was in Udupi at this time, deshribes the people as being dried trees that were waiting for these refreshing, long awaited rains in the form of the incredible pastimes of Madhvacarya, to pour upon their thirsty ears. Having received these pastimes began to show new sprouts of life in the form of happiness and satisfaction.
So much so did the local people love Madhvacarya that the tumultuous sound of their welcome was like thunder, and he himself was like lightning and the refreshing and stimulating rains gave the needed releif, like those oh so welcoming first rains of monsoon after a long hot dry summer.
The Eleventh Canto of Madhva Vijay tells of the fruits of the result of becoming fixed in the conclusions of Madhvacarya, how by always remembreing the Lord one can obtain to the realm of Vaikuntha. There are also elaborate deshriptions of Vaikuntha and how one resides there in a body made of eternality, youthfulness, always happy and free from the miseries of birth, death, old age and disease of this material world.
Even there are deshriptions of loving exchanges which are free from bodily defects such as lust, anger, greed, quarrels, etc in as much as there is no jealousy between persons, the feelings even between co-wives of a husband are harmonious, everyone is serving the Lord and His eternal associates constantly.
That Lord Narayana is elaborately deshribed as being the most perfect and oppulent person, surrounded by assistants who are non-envious and always ready to serve Him at any moment. Even those residents of Vaikuntha, they are also always willing to serve each other and are free from duplicity, and other material defects, etc.
Those who are eligible to see the Lord's form see Him as having endless forms, some with the lustre of gold, some with the lustre of rubies, another the lustre of newly risen sun, another may have a blue complexion like a sapphire and another mixed, such as tawny green. Another is the form of bliss and knowledge with the fragrance of an indescribable natural nectarean aroma and all good qualities.
His face in all these forms makes the moon look faulty (having sixteen phases or kalas), His eyes are as wide as a pink lotus, and His lips are so pleasing for the devotees to see.
His neck has three lines like the creases inside a beautiful conchshell, and His neck is adorned with the kaustubha mani which is as lusterous as the sun. Also adorning His neck are the finest natural white pearls. On His arms He has an excellent golden armulet studded with priceless gems. The bangles on His wrists are beyond compare.
In each of His hands He has a different natural weapon - the Sudarsana disc, as effulgent as a group of suns, a pure white conch that resembles the disc shape of the moon on the Purnima (full moon night). In another hand He holds the lotus, in another He holds His mace (kaumodaki) that shines like fire. The bow of the name Sarnga which keeps all ghosts and demons far away from Vaikuntha resides in another hand, and another hand bestows blessings. His hand is soft, round, and broad, the palm is tinged with red hue.
Between the broad and robust shoulders on the Lord's chest is where the goddess of fortune, Laxmi Devi, makes her residence in the jewel mandapam made especially for her.
The Lord's small belly which is praised by Lord Brahma in the form of a bumble bee, contains the fourteen worlds in it's deep lotus navel. Oh how auspicious Lord Narayana is.
His dhoti of yellow silken cloth that shines like gold, is adorned at the top by a highly decorative girdle. This all auspicious covering has beneath it two thighs that resemble the trunks of well proportioned celestial elephants, that are round with delightful knees.
Lord Narayana reveals His person to His devotees and rarely to others. He has fingers with nails that resemble the lustre of a new pearl.
His lotus feet are the residence of the devotees prayers, and I offer my obeisances at those lotus feet.
PADMATIRTHA, PUNDARIKA PURI AND OTHER FOLLOWERS OF SANKARACARYA DEFEATED
Previously on Madhvacarya's tour of the south he had continuous conflict with the head of the Mayavadi Shringeri Mutt of the name Vidyasankara. Due to very unfortunate circumstances those persons, the follwers of Vidyasankara, who were poorly realized in transcendental matters and after the demise of their leader and guide, Vidyasankara appointed Padmatirtha as the next in line. Though he had studied well and could repeat the philosophy of the Sankaracarya he was really just a puppet, a legislative replacement to fulfill the needs of those follwers of Sankara who had other plans. The original Adi Sankara, the incarnation of Lord Siva, stated once to one of his follwers that persons who had other motives, material desires to fulfill in this world would lake to living as ascetics to attain their needs. Seeing these things now present, these envious persons, full of lust, envy and greed, planned to present Padmatirtha who actually was, to some degree, quite innocent, as their representitive. These situations may survive for a short time amongst the cheats and cheated but soon they were to be put to the test.
Padmatirtha was one of the foremost disciples of Vidya Sankara who held office between Vidya Sankara and Vidyaranya. But now, pushed forward by his follwers, Padmatirtha was urged to seek revenge on behalf of Vidya Sankara who was defeated in Travancore, Trivandrum, Ramesvaram, etc, by Madhvacarya.
The Mayavadis of Shringeri were so envious of Madhva that they all combined together to stir up the naturally envious nature of the Sankarite Padmatirtha. Though he was now their guru, they taunted him in such a way, suggesting that due to Madhvacarya's fame and reputation Padmatirtha had become a coward. In the meantime another follower of Padmatirtha by the name Kasta, who was a reputed half-wit but who was extremely proud of what little learning he did have, tried to challenge Madhva. Kasta then in a loud manner, advertised the plan of the Sankarites to send of deligation headed by Padmatirtha to attack Madhvacarya.
They were actually so envious due to their lacking of sound philosophical arguments that they tried all kinds of underhanded means such as departments of tantra. This tantra sastra, which is really the property of Sukracarya the guru of the demons, was now being employed against Madhvacarya and his saintly follwers. Employing tantrics that are opposed to the priests following Brhaspati, the priest of the demigods this was how low they got. Padmatirtha's men used Vasikarana to try to physically put Madhva under their control. They tried istambhana to try to paralize him physically, vidvesana mantras to create opposition or anger in members on the camp of Madhwa, causing animosity and divided interests. They tried uchchatan to disturb the mental equilibrium of Madhva and his men, and put fear and uncertainty and delusion in their hearts. But when none of the above tantras worked, they tried maran mantras to kill them. By the purity of Acarya Madhva, he repelled all the tantric curses as a lotus sheds the water of a pond without even so much as a second thought.33
Instead of these material tactics of tantra causing problems for him, Madhvacarya was becoming more and more popular by the second, the Sankaraites decided to try to politically put a stop to Madhva and his philosophy of dwiatavada.
Any brahmin who was found to have any learning toward dualism was ostracised from society as an outcaste. So in this way those envious persons, evious of the Supreme Personality of Godhead in the first case, and envious of His devotees and the philosophy which glorifies both in the second case, tried all manner of devious means to discredit those who followed Madhva.
Shri Madhva Vijay deshribes one of the collegues of Padmatirtha by the name Pundarika Puri as being like a dog, who by nature goes to dirty places and rummages through the dirt only to invite the lion to lunch, or who is like a mucus eating crow who has only one eye, yet invites a pure white swan to associate. This cunning jackal further more is compared to a small fire fly, small and weak, with an inconsistant mind, about to be burned in the fire.
Philosophically speaking, how could the philosophy of avidya (ignorance) hope to defeat the philosophy of vidya (knowledge)? Madhva states, "How can the Vedic scriptures declare all but Brahman to be unreal? A Sruti declaring all but Brahman to be unreal thereby declares itself to be unreal and inacceptable."
The campaign of harassment was all very stratigically worked out by the Mayavadis. Leaving the dirty work to the foolish uneducated common folk, Pundarika Puri and Padmatirtha set out for Udupi to challenge Madhva. When they arrived they made themselves known to Madhva's party and immediately put forward a challenge to Madhva who was then in ecstacy. The plenary portion of Vayu, Shri Mukhya Prana, Acarya Madhva never ever turned down an opportunity to purify the atmosphere of bad air.
News spread like wild fire and soon all the local brahmins had assembled to witness the coming debate. Some came to substantiate their own Vedic learning, and some came out of curiousty, being innocent and who had studied the Vedas in an adwiatin-monistic way, and now they wanted to hear of an alternative. Pundarika Puri who was considered very learned was to be the challenger. He chose his favourite Rg Veda as the means to present his all one philosophy of ignorance (avidya).
Madhva, as the defender, started to explain each and every syllable and word in relation to the Supreme Lord, His devotees, and thier qualities. Madhvacarya presented Lord Narayana as being the Supreme Creator, one without a second, Who has a host of demigods like Brahma, Siva, Ganesa, etc. always ready to serve His lotus feet.
Lord Narayana is also the creator of the Pancabhutas, Akasa (sky). Vayu (air), Agni (fire), jal (water, prithivi (earth) and it's numerous combinations throughout the millions of universes that He creates simply by His breathing. Then by His guna avatars, Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesha (Siva), He further creates, maintains and destroys.
Madhvacarya then substantiated this by further using his vast knowledge of Vyakarana (grammar) and roots in words, pronounciation etc as mentioned in the Vedic literatures.
Madhva proved himself skilful at using the devanagari (sankshrit alphabet) to substantiate that the Supreme Persoanlity of Godhead is that transcendentally mischevious child who played in the area of Mathura with His cowherd friends, and was bound by ropes of love by His mother after she ran after Him. Lord Shri Krishna, Who in the form of a cowherd boy sported with the gopis in the forests of Vrindavan etc. He alone is the Supreme Absolute Truth. (Madhva Vijay 12.32)
Madhvacarya's whole mood was to solely establish the Supreme Personality of Godhead to be supremely different from all other souls in the three worlds. His explanations are refered to in Madhva Vijay as being as beautiful as Draupadi who charmed everyone that dared to come to try to win her hand at the swayamvara. Her delicate steps and charming voice won every heart in that swayamvara hall. Now Acarya Madhva, by means of definition of different padas (steps) of mantras, instructed the assembly clearly the proper mood (vyavahita) as well as meaning to each verse of the Rg Veda.
Obviously Madhva's learning and eradition was far beyond that of the would-be scholar Pundarika Puri. Every brahmin in the assembly praised Madhva as being empowered by Sarasvati, Garuda and Brhaspati, the servants of the Lord who bless one with prolific speech. Then Madhva was compared to Caturmukha Brahma, the Vedas emanating from his four mouths and definitely he is his pure representative of the Brahma Sampradaya.
Everyone was now waiting to see the reaction from Pundarika Puri, who was obviously defeated before he had even started. However Pundarika was too proud and would not concede defeat. he opened his mouth and then proceded to show everyone just how unqualified he was to challenge the pure empowered Vaishnava devotee of the Lord.
Breaking up the sylabells of the first sukta of Rg Veda in the wrong place he made a mockery of the sanskrit verse as well as himself. Under the cover of night, vindictive and in shame, the mayavadis all left Udupi, but before they left that night the seething Pundarika Puri, Padmatirtha and many other sankarites went to Madhvacarya's library to cause some mischeif.
The next morning the Vaishnava brahmin of the name Samkaracarya, who was Shripad Madhvacarya's librarian, approached Madhva with a deathly blank look on his face. he had bad news to report - Someone had stollen all of the books from Madhwacarya's library!
The poor boy Samkaracarya took the initial brunt of Madhva's fury. Over the last few years Madhvacarya worked on many books including his bhasyas on the following Upanisads - Aitareya, Taithiriya, Brhadaranyak, Isa, Katha, Chandogya, Mundaka, Mandukya, Satprasna and Kena. He also wrote two other bhasyas on the Brahma Sutras, Anuvyakhyana and Anubhasya in thirty two verses as well as his ten prakaranas - Karma Nirnaya, Pramana Laksana, Kathalaksana, Upadhikhandana, Tattwodyota, Vishnu-Tattva Vinirnaya, Mayavadakhandana, Prapancamithyat-vanumana-Khandana, Tattva Samkhyana and Tattva Viveka, as well as his Bhagavat Tat Parya, Gita Tat Parya, Mahabharata Tat Parya, and Yamaka Bharata, Sadacara Smriti, and Krishna Jayanti Kalpa (Nirnaya).
But now they had all been stolen!
Narayana Panditacarya describes Madhva and his library as being like the sun god riding across the sky on his chariot drawn by seven horses: that is Madhva who like the sun dispells the darkness of ignorance when he comes into the vicinity and his chariot is compared to his library which is drawn by seven worses which are the four Vedas (Rg, Yajur, Sama and Artharva), Mula Ramayana, Mahabharata and the Pancaratra, which reveals the form of the Lord as Parambrahman.
Madhva, who in 12.51 of Madhva Vijay is compared to Lord Nrsimhadeva, shining greatly, who is about to rip to pieces the insignificant wasp like Hiranyakasipus, who having done their dirty deed have now cowardly run away.
Oh demons in the form of Mayavadis now see that the Vaishnava guru is saksadhari being qualitatively equal to the heat felt by Sisupal. "O foolish mayavadins soon you will taste the nature the Lord when the life air is stopped." Madhva, now in an angry mood, carries his own sudarsana disc in the form of sharp words supported by sastra, telling of the results of such thievery.
Madhva started out for the camp of the doomed Mayavadis. After a fierce walk Madhva and his party covered the distance bewteen the fleeing Mayavadis and themselves overnight at the village of Pragrya Vata (Kudipadi) where the Supreme Personality of Godhead resides in His Deity form as Lord Janardana.
Padmatirtha humbly and fearful, tried to approach Madhvacarya and his party to try to cover everything up, as though it had never happened. Trying to avoid a scandal after being caught red handed, Padmatirtha tried to make so many compromises. Talking around the actual even, Padmatirtha indirectly trying to say that is wasn't him who stole the books.
By now the month of Asadha (June/July) had arrived which denotes the start of the rainy season and the vows of Caturmasya for the sannyasis. Madhva and his party stayed put for the four months in Kalu village. Madhva didn't care for the excuses of these Mayavadis and after he finally kicked out any hope in Padmatirtha's heart of any compromise, Padmatirtha and his party left their lodgings to sneak away like the thieves they are.
Madhva was confident that by the Lord's grace his books would come back, for he had collected the most rare and ancient of Vaishnava literatures, as well as his own commentaries on these books. His library was volumous. Not that Madhva really needed those books to rely on, but the unlimited stock pile of sastras which he had in his possession supported his claims from all other great rsis and munis in days of yore, as well as the Lord Himself.
News had spread both far and wide of the theft of Acarya Madhva's books until it reached the ears of the Vaishnava king of Kumbha (Kerala), whose name was Jayasimha Maharaja.34 He sent a message to Madhva saying that he would like to reclaim those books if Madhva so desired, and Madhva gave his consent.
Madhva Vijay 13.4-8 compares Madhva to the Ganges that purifies the sins of innumerable persons and always remains pure itself. Many persons indirectly of directly render service to Mother Ganges in the form of drinking her pure waters, bathing and worshipping her. Also here it is stated however that the Vaishnava acarya is even more revered and holy than hundreds of holy rivers, for by bathing in such rivers many times one will undoubtedly become purified, but just by one eleventh of a second's association with the pure Vaishnava devotee of the Lord, one's whole life is changed consequently they are known by names like Vishnupada, Tirthapada,, Prabhupada and Bhagavatpada.
Feeling like this, Jayasimha Maharaja wanted an opportunity to serve Madhvacarya since he had heard so much about him and his preaching mission. He knew that this was no ordinary sannyasi like one's that he would just give alms to, or who travel from one holy place to another, but here was a walking place of pilgrimage, a paramhamsa, wherever he went that place became holy and all kinds of devotees flocked to him.
That next full moon night Jayasimha Maharaja and his whole army went and found Padmatirtha and his party in their encampment. Raja Jayasimha gave an ultimatum to the Mayavadis - bring out all the books within five minutes or be slaughtered by this valiant army!
Within the alloted time, stack by stack, the descendants of Sankaracarya brought out the stolen books. Free from sentiment, the King and his army received the stolen books and took them back to their camp. To add insult to the sudden humility of Sankarites, the King just took the books from them and left with his army without so much as even looking at their dry black faces, such low and disgusting creatures were they considered to be.
Jayasimha Maharaja sent his royal messenger to Madhva at Mount Sahya (Coorg), where he was blessing his disciples, and asked him to to come to Vishnumangalam with his men to reclaim his books. Madhva travelled with his party westwards and went to Kabenadu in the Kumbla kingdom and visited the temple of Manadadhipati (Madaneswara). Madhva spent the night there and took bath in the temple tank. This temple is five miles from Kumbla at the village of Madhur.
In Madhva Vijay 13.11-23 it is mentioned how Madhvacarya walked in grand possession from Madanadhipati to Vishnumangalam with hundred of his followers walking with him. As he walked in the centre of the crowd, boldly walking with fresh tilak and the marks of the disc and conch on his strong body. He was garlanded with a maha-prasada Tulasi garland which reached to his knees. There were followers chanting nicely in sankirtan the holy names of the Lord. In front was the purna kumbha pot of honour and over his head was a pure white umbrella fit for a king. In a bag around his neck bound with rope were the Asta Murti Saligrams that Shrila Vyasadeva had given him. On Madhva's face was a beaming smile. Surrounded by hundreds of ascetics and householders, Madhva strode along the road without any sign of fatigue followed by many disciples and his bullock cart pulled by his favourite bull to reclaim the books.
Just outside the place of Madaneswara, King Jayasimha came to meet with Madhva. Jayasimha Maharaja, out of respect, got down from his palanquin and humbly walked to Shripada Madhvacarya, the best of Vaishnava sannyasis. even though he was the monarch of the Kumbla kingdom, Jayasimha Maharaja, at a short distance from Madhva, prostrated himself at Madhva's feet. The king dispersed his army to the sides of the road to make a path for Madhvacarya and himself to walk down. everyone was ecstatically amazed at the humility and devotion of the King.
Hearing the pomp of the regal procession, all the villagers nearby Vishnumangalam came out in their thousands to greet Acaryas Madhva, his party, and the saintly king. It was an amazing sight. Many persons standing at the roadside chanting the glories of the Lord through different suktas like Purusa Sukta, Narayana Sukta, Vishnu Sukta. Many clad with lotus seed neck beads and sank and cakras on their shoulders, and dancing in sankirtan.
The Mayavadis had tried to supress Madhva, but the Lord had made him more and more glorious. Such is the plan of the Lord. Just by seeing Madhvacarya everyone felt satisfied. He was now coming as if slowly, though actually quickly, with a dignified gait like a powerful young lion. Madhva's feet were auspiciously tinged with a red hue like that of fine rubies, his toes are described as being like the neck and head of an excellent tortoise protuding from his feet. Madhva who has soft round ankles and knees worthy of being served even by the devas like Rudra, Candra, etc. was like a rare nectar to the eyes of all.
Those persons standing nearby could see Madhva's lower garment being made of the very best silk, wrapped around his firm and slender waist. his upper cloth was made of closely woven sheep wool, red in colour, and woven on fine soft threads.
Madhva's stature is described as being with broad chest, wall like shoulder blades and thick, round, long arms which resembled fighting clubs. His hands poised with his flag in the form of two fingers defining dwaita (dualism) and his face resembled a spotless moon. His teeth are like jasmine buds which shine through the gentle smile of his reddish lips. Looking around ar the crowed, everyone is taken back by the pleasing and kind look of his soft lotus eyes.
With bunches of Tulasi manjaris tucked above his right ear, in humility he bowed to everyone who had come to greet him. After being welcomed in this way, Maharaja Jayasimha then led Acarya Madhva to a raised dias and seated Madhva there. Then Jayasimha Maharaja had his men bring in Madhvacarya's personal library that he had reclaimed, and presented the books to Madhva who then blessed the saintly king. Raja Jayasimha Maharaja then left Vishnumangalam for his kingdom of Kumbla, a new man, and a devotee of Madhvacarya.
Sitting in the assembly of learned brahmins, pandits and well wishers, Madhva sent for his disciple Hrsikesha tirtha and had him recite from the Shrimad Bhagavatam and Bhagavad-gita, Madhwacarya in perfect hjarmony accompanied his disciple as they sung the verses together using all different swaras. Afterwards Madhva spoke on each relevent sloka, giving his commentary.
Shrila Madhvacarya says, vividham bhava-patratvat sarve visnor vibhutayah. "That Krishna is the original Personality of Godhead and that all other incarnations proceed from Vishnu."
tay-pada-pankaja palasa vilasa bhaktya
karmasayam grathitam udgrathayanti santah
tadvan na rikta-matayo yatayo 'pi ruddha-
sroto-ganas tam aranam bhaja vasudevam
"Just try to worship in devotional service, Vasudeva, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. even great sages are not fully able to control the forces of the senses as effectively as those who are engaged in transcendental bliss by serving the lotus feet of the Lord, uprooting the deep rooted desire for fruitive activities and their results."
anistam istam misram ca
tri-vidham karmanah phalam
bhavaty atyaginam pretya
na tu sannyasinam kvacit
"For one who is not renounced, the threefold fruits of action - desirable, undesirable and mixed - accrue after death. But those who are renounced in their life have no such result to suffer or enjoy."
ye tu sarvani karmani mayi sannyasya mat-parah
ananyenaiva yogena mam dhyayanta upasate
tesam aham samuddharta mrtyu samsara sagarat
bhavami na cirat partha mayyavesita cetasam
"Those who worship Me (Krishna), giving up all their fruitive activities unto Me and being devoted to me without deviation, engaged in devotional service and always thinking of Me (Krishna) having fixed their minds upon Me (Krishna), O son of Prtha - for them I am the swift deliverer from the ocean of birth and death."
tat te 'nukampam su-samiksamano
bhunjano evatma-krtam vipakam
hrd-vag vapurbhir vidadhan namas te
jiveta yo mukti pade sa daya bhak
"One who earnestly waits for your causeless mercy to be bestowed upon him, My Lord, all the while patiently suffering the reactions of his past misdeads and offering You (Krishna) respectful obeisances with his heart, words and body, is surely eligiible for liberation, for it has become his rightful claim."
Madhvacarya told a number of Krishna's pastimes at this time and stated the above facts that only Lord Shri Krishna, Mukunda, the holder of the Sudarsana Cakra, can put an end to the vicious cycle of birth and death. Like this Madhva disclosed as to who is the giver of liberation and qualifcation of the candidate for liberation.
TRIVIKRAMACARYA (TRIVIKRAMA PANDITACARYA)
Madhva Vijay 13.43 introduces a member of the congregation of brahmins, a great pandit who everyone looked up to. In fact his erudition far surpassed all the other pandits of Vishnumangala. he was famous throughout the south. Practically from his birth in the family of Subrahmanya Pandit of the Angirasa Gotra, Trivikrama, even in his indistinct baby talk, would compose wonderful poems. In the village of Kasargod in the house of the name Kavumutt, as he grew up he outshone all the respected pandits of the area. Trivikrama Pandit studied the scriptures according to Sankara, but was never really satisfied with it's conclusions. Trivikram Pandit's father also told him in his youth that to become one in meditation with Brahman will never give satisfaction, for it is not an ultimate goal. In fact it is the effulgence of the transcendental bodily form of Lord Shri Krishna, so better you worship Him from whense that effulgence comes.
But even with the good instructions of his father, Trivikrama Pandit whose mind was flickering from one thing to another, secretly studied the Sankara Bhasya.
madhva Vijay 13.50 also points out that trivikrama Pandit even surpassed the learning of Bhanu (Prabhakara). Trivikrama Pandit was a good householder who upheld the panca maha yajnas of householder life - (1) reciting Vedic literature, (2) performance of homa (fire jayna), (3) worsshipping and feeding guests as one would the Lord, (4) offering oblations to the departed forefathers - sraddha pata, and (5) offering foodstuffs in charity to the people in general.
Trivikrama Pandit's study of the Vedic literatures such as the four Vedas, as well as grammar and prosody, was very prolific but still hewas secretly inclined to Sankara's Bhasya.
Trivikrama argued it out with madhva's disciples constantly. Trivikrama Pandit's own younger brother was in fact the librarian, Samkaracarya, and so Trivikrama had begun to read some of Madhva's works and had experienced a pleasant surprise to his mind. even though it is for certain that the works od Madhva are to be accepted as first class sastric evidence, Trivikrama did not accept even one word at first, though sometimes as he read Madhva's Brahma Sutra Bhasya his blood boiled with anger as Madhva, with unceremonial glee, smashed the citidels of advaitin vedanta.
At this time in Vishnumangala, whilst Madhvacarya sat on the dias, that best of pandits sat to listen to madhva's conclusions on the Shrimad Bhagavatam. After some time however, Trivikrama could no longer bear to hear Madhva's personalistic view of Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead, and so offered a challenge.
Trivikrama Pandit was a born genius, but over the next fifteen days he was so amazed by the presentation of Madhvacarya that his challenge d\ceased. Over the course of those fifteen days at the village of Amaralaya (kudilu) Madhva presented and defeated all known philosophies and even those of a mixed or uncertain nature.
While the debate ensued, Madhvacarya still kept to his normal program of rising early in the morning before the arundaya (sun rise) when the son of Vinata (Aruna, the brother of Garuda) was to rise. Before sunrise, during the Brahma Muhurta period, Madhva took his bath and prepared himself to worship Lord Narayana.
At the temple tank Madhva and many of his sannyasi disciples would take their baths and brush their teeth with twigs from the nim tree. After drying his body and then marking it with Visnava tilaks whilst chanting the Lord's holy names, Madhvacarya performed pranayam breathing control and then dressed in fresh clean cloth.
Some of Madhva's younger disciples stayed up late the night before and because of this had still not gotten up from their sleep, nor had they done their prescribed duties. Madhva chastised them saying, "O disciples, why haven't you performed your work that has been assigned to you?" With their bodies bowed out of huimility, they replied that "Out of respect for you and the older disciples we had waited some time so as not to bathe at the same time as yourselves, so we were waiting until you had completed your bath, for we consider you as our spiritual masters."
When everyone was ready the puja bega. Madhva would worship his Saligram Silas given by Shrila Vyasadeva, first by proksaniyasm cleansing, and by lighting lamps to illuminate the area from darkness. Madhkess then took away from the Saligrams the previous day's flowers.
Even with the flowers offered to Madhva's Saligrams, incredible theings happened. Some of the disciples thought that there was ghee somehow on the flowers, but Madhva told them that even the flowers were in so much ecstacy that they excreted nectar so thick and in such abundance it appeared to be ghee-like.
At the auspicious time of sunrise Madhva and his men engaged in glorifying the Supreme Lord who resides within the sun globe, bedecked with golden ornaments and holding a pure white conch in one hand and the Sudarsana disc in the other. With choice prayers they worshipped the sun in it's aspects of Arundaya Usodaya and Suryodaya by the process of Sandhya Vandanam, the prayers conducted at each of the three conjunctions of dawn, noon and dusk (sandhyams).
Madhva then bathed the Saligrams in pure waters from the temple kund whilst some of his disciples chanted prayers from various Vedic hymns. He had personally collected this water for the puja and had made sure it was pure, cool, without additional colour - free from anything being in it, free from any bad odour and untouched by finger or toe nails.
Smearing the Saligrams with purest sandalwood oil and anointing their lotus feet with fresh tulasi leaves and manjaris (buds), he also then offered the best of fragrant flowers such as lotus, jasmine, campaka (frangapani). Madhva Vijay 14.35 states these flowers came from various sources on a framework from trees and from creepers that spread themselves on the ground and which look like Laxmidevi, the crest jewel of all flowers.
In this way Madhva offered sixteen first class articles to Their Lordships whilst avoiding the offences for Their worship. (MV 14.36).
After the worship was over for the time being Madhva took some payasam sweet rice mahaprasad. By this time it was about two or three in the afternoon, and many persons had now come to see him, each of them trying to serve him first.
Madhvacarya made a rule that from this day on, every person who comes to see the Lord in the temple, and who comes to see Madhva, the Lord's servant, must get tirtha (caranmrta) and prasad before they leave the premises.
His disciples again read for some time and Madhva made comments on important factors in each verse, until finally Madhva told the assembly, enough reflecting on the book, more can be done later. For now, madhva was to propound more points on relevent issues of Who is the Supreme, who is the h\jiva, what is their relationship and how they differ. After some time the sun started to go down, but this did not stop Madhvacarya.
Madhva Vijay points out in 14.50 that at this time as the sun was going down, those who were brahmins in the assembly performed the agni hotra fire sacrifice with recitation of idan na mama, for the oblations are meant for Lord Vishnu and "not for me" (idan na mam). This was again done upon the orders of Acarya Madhva, for his life is based solely on this principle. Acarya Madhva's only thought and deed was for the Lord's service.
As the full moon was in the sky Acarya Madhva described the Personality of Godhead Shri Krishna intimately as having a dark blackish blue lustre similar to the finest blue gem, Who has teeth like the new buds of the jasmine flower that are tinged with pink, and Who is decorated with a wonderful garland of forest flowers like parijata, lotus, malati and others and which is called Vaijanti. Krishna is the Lord of the gopis (cowherd girls) and friend of the cowherd boys (gopas). Krishna has no bashfulness when He sports with the gopis at night or steals their clothes as they bath, leaving their clothes on the bank of the Yamuna River. Krishna teases those ofrtunate girls until they succumb to Him and come out from the water to collect their clothes.
In this way, as the moon brightens the sky at night, so madhva enlightened the dsiciples on the different wonderful attrributes of Lord Shri Krishna from the Shrimad Bhagavatam. everyone just sat and listened to Acarya Madhva speak, not even taking their eyes off him for a second, everyone was so satisfied for it was just like hearing directly from Shrila Vyasadeva the best of Rsis.
Due to the assembley's absorbtion in the depths of Madhva's discourse they completely forgot about time. Knowing that in such pure association there is no difference in result between happiness and distress, just as an expert business man makes money when the market is up and also when it is seemingly down, so the assembly of devotees knew that whatever circumstances appear one must take shelter at the lotus feet of the Lord and His pure devotee. Madhvacarya then started to give the arguments of many known philosophies and then show their main defects to prove to the audience that only the Vaishnava conclusions can give actual understanding of the Lord and His otherwise inconceivable attributes for it is only by worshipping the Lord with love and devotion that he personally gives the understanding by which one can come to Him.
Madhva's voice was neither slow nor fast nor materially flatering but was flowing rich and continuous..
Trivikramacarya stayed and listened whilst still mentally trying to find faults, though he could not.
Madhvacarya proved by Veda as well as reasoning that Lord Vishnu who is mentioned in all the Vedic literatures as being full in all good qualities, however these qualities are not full in jivas like us. One man may be a little famous, or may have some wealth, or may even be quite handsome, or quite learned, and the same with power and renounciation. Some persons may have some of these oppulences but the Supreme Personality of Godhead has each of them to the fullest extent and more. his unlimites good qualities proved that He alone is the Supreme God, He is also the omniscient, omnipotent, creator (sustainer and destroyer) of His creation, the universes.
Paromatraya tanva vridhana etc declares His unlimited qualities; sarvesu bhutesu etam evam brahmetyacaksate etc; confirms His appellation or discrimination as to distinguishing factors of Brahman; tava etah sarvarcah etc says that the Lord is known by the Vedas; yo nah pita janita yo vidhata etc goes on to declare Him as the primary creator of the universe.
Some persons say (the Niresvara Sankhyas) that God is not the creator of the universe but that the inanimate pradhana transforms itself inot the universe in a way much like milk turning into yogurt.
Madhva points out to his own statement that if this is os, that milk is the independant creator of yogurt, then their argument is true. But it is not a fact, for something has touched the milk to turn it to yogurt, be it culture, acid, heat or some entity. etena vavo payo mandam bhavati etc.
So in the same way, after creating the pradhana, the Lord impregnates it by His glance. Bhagavad-gita confirms this:
sarva yonisu kaunteya
murtayah sambhavanti yah
tasam brahma mahad yonir
aham bija pradah pita
"It should be understood that all species of life, O son of Kunit, are made possible by birth in this material nature, and that I am the seed giving father."
Those who follow the schools of the Bhattas (smarta), Prabhakaras and Carvakas say that the pradhana is the creator, much like saying that nature is the creator without asking whose nature? They say indirectly that the mother if the primary creator without any contact with an impregnating father. Mother nature supplies the body but the father supplies the seed, and Krishna has already stated that He is this creator - the seed giving father. Madhvacarya argued strongly to enable the bewildered people to understand these simple points. The poor peoples have been cheated for so long accepting blindly devious philsophies without asking even the basic questions for as soon as one asks these questions one has to accept God is creator but these rascals this they will no do. for if they accept the creator as being a supreme person, who is the controller and organizer, ruler of the unlimited universes then they have to surrender to Him, again this they will not do.
The Supreme Creating Father has spoken the Vedas, but this actual pure Vedanta these persons cannot understand, for they are all like unchaste women who are uncontrolled by their husbands. So in this way these persons actually deny the Vedas and try instead to establish their won ideas without reference to the actual Vedas spoken by the Lord, then they try to establish transcendental abjectives by reason only which is in their unfounded case only mental speculation, for they have no real philosophy. Madhva says,
In the Brahma-Parinama Vada philosophy of Bhaskara it is said that Brahman has no form yet the light of Brahman is a form in itself, and granting for arguments sake that a transofrmation of Brahman with a complete loss ofone's original form is possible, then the question still remains which is one's actual natural form, and does one loose that original form completely or partially?
So if as we know Brahman consists of saccidananda, eternity, knowledge and bliss, then surely Brahman is not that which is the cause of change like milk and yogurt. There is a sentient being, God, that is the source of the Brahman effulgence, and He is the Supreme Controller and the ultimate goal of life, the only true resting place. Other so called resting places are like so many verses describing a crow to be white.
The Vaisesikas say that Lord Narayana cannot be the supreme for He is devoid of happiness, this what they say! Because He has no sorrow or unhappiness, then how can He have happiness for one must ecperience sorrow to appreciate happiness, and seeing that He doesn't experience sorrow then He cannot experience happiness.
Madhva says, out of ignorance one is in delusion and out of knowledge one is in happiness. Reason cuts both ways, it allows you to deprive the Lord of His natural happiness and it also allows you fools to prove lack of knowledge in Him. But this is just delusion for that knowledge which does not give a sound conclusion of the personification of knowledge, for example, that the all knowing, eternal, blissful Lord who is the supreme controller and enjoyer, thaty so-called knowledge is simple so many words.
In this way the foolish vcaisesikas think that the Lord has a material body, and is subject to happiness and distress like those subject to repetition of birth and death in this material world. This mundane mentality the Lord Himself condemns in the Bhagavad-gita (9.11). avajananti mam mudha... So rather than impose our mundane perception on the Lord, better is to accept our view that the Lord is always absorbed in His own bliss.
According to Tarkikas, the relation between the mode of nature and the possesser thereof is known as samavaya relationship. It is one only and non-different from each other. This philosophy also leans towards vaisesika although the tarkikas may and do say that though samavaya is one, it may be different due to upadhi or conditions. According to Madhva, upadhis are of two kinds, external which give rise to a distorted reflection of the truth much like a dusty and cracked mirror, reflecting the bound jiva soul to be the same as his body, bodily possessions such as family, friends, and all their paraphernalia, etc, on account of having them with him for an extremely long time, and so making him fall prey to their influences that give a sense of false security and unfortunately direct one to act independently from the will of the Lord. Then there is svarupopadhis which directly relates the jiva as being the Lord's eternal servant. The tarkikas unfortunately don'e follow this principal. Instead they insist that there is no distinction between the person and the effect, part, subject and attributes. Generally then the tarkikas are to be with the Vaisesikas.
So in this way, by reasoning with upadhi in respect to Samavaya, their philsophy was refuted. Madhvacarya then went to on show further how difference must be there even with submissive persons of like nature, for if the defference between the mode and person influenced by the modes is accepted as it must be, there will be another dispute because there will always be differences even though one may want a mutual relation. for differences must be there as an intrinsic relationship between all things. How can the broken pot like philosophy of exclusive oneness by taken seriously?
Now there is another group who are neither Vaisesikas, nor Buddhists (Baudhas). They call themselves Vedantists. Really they are concealed Mayavadis and are called Madhyamikas, one's who follow the middle path (Vedanta mixed with Buddhism). This is the philsophy of Madhyamaka (Madhyamikavrtti.) Though they call themselves Vedantists really they are more interested in morals of a material nature. The universe they see as being neither real nor unreal, and no truth can be really established for it appears from one's own conception of a situation. Nor do they accept eternity (sasvatavada) nor voidism or nihilism (ucchedavada), and so they are called madhyamikas (middle of the road). They even say there is no real truth in them or in anything else. They say that the cause of everything is neither the Lord (Narayana), nor themselves, nor from nature, nor from time, nor arising from desire, for the creation comes of it's own cause from it's own desire, born of ignorance but coming to life. Actually they are cheats and simply prey on those who want to be cheated so they can 'enjoy' in this material world separately from the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Who, despite their ignorance of Him, is the Supreme creator, enjoyer, and proprietor of everything, the revealer of truth and only source of fulfilment.
These wicked, covered Mayavadis, say that the Veda who has such forms as mantra, the brahmin-sadhus, and Upanisads, etc still does not inform anyone on the truth of what is Brahman, and so they say that Brahman is void. Again because they can't perceive something then it doesn't exist. Their philosophy is neither scientific nor sane.
To show how these Madhyanmikas who follow Mayavad and Buddhism as having really no difference between these two philosophies, Madhva presented the following argument:
"Since you say that everything is coming from Brahman as it's cause, including the universe, and that since this Brahman is without form or distinctiveness, void, then there is no difference in the Buddhist or Mayavada philosophies.
"So Oh Baudda, your void cannot be the cause of the universe, for it is unreal and non-existant. Such is the meaning of void. Only that which is real can cuase another real object to manifest. Nothing doesn;t suddenly produce something. Even you may say that the universe is produced from ignorance of the void, like silver bring present in a pearl. If you really believe this then take out the silver from the pearl. For you are in illusion, Only a fool would say such things.
"O Mayavadis, what are you saying? You try to say that all the Upanisads support your stance that brahma satyam jagan mrtya - that Brahman is truth and everything else is false. You try to say that by means of the three modes of implication Brahman is propounded throughout the Vedas (Upanisads), but according to this then Brahman is savisesa (full of all kinds of attributes such as saccidananda vigraha). But how can this be for you, for you say that Brahman is nirvisesa (without character). You say that Brahman is characterless, without form, distinctions, or features and qualities. Yet the pholosophy of visesa defeats you simply in child-like statements and establishes identity and individuality or difference. Even in every day life we make so many distinctions. In respects to insentient or inert objects, some are produced as an interaction with other visesa or elements and some are as they are for as long as they stay in that form or visesa. If you don't distinguish one thing from another you will surely make fools of yourselves. In sentient beings also, visesa applies one person is eating, one is walking, one if coming, one is going, etc etc. Differences are all going on according to varieties of activities.
"If you cannot make sense of this then dress in fire or eat earth, walk in the air or eat with the anus. What is the difference? Can't you see what is happening. Everyday simply without fully understanding your flimsy philosophy you try to juggle words to make bogus statements, but now you are exposed. Make up your minds. Does the Lord have a transcendental form, is He formless, or is it a material form. Simply out of envy for Him you cheat yourselves into thinking you are that supreme. Wishful thinking and word jugglery.
"Let me explain - when one uses the modes of implication such as jahallaksana, the direct meaning of a sentence is discarded in favour of an indirect meaning such as 'ganayam ghosah', 'the village of the cowherds is in the Ganges', and by applying jahallaksana it becomes 'the village of the cowherds is on the bank of the Ganges.' By use of ajahallaksana the direct meaning of a sentence is not completely discarded but hints at the meaning are given, such as 'sonah dhavati' which means 'the red is running' and so is to be understood as 'the red horse is running'. So in the same way, in the case of jahadajahallaksana, one part of the direct meaning is given up and another part of the direct meaning is retained. You accept tat tvam asi to mean 'I am the same as' or "that thou art'. The association of 'that thou art' or 'I and that which is the same', that which is of remote omniscience and the I that am of immediate nature, I am that is different. This actually gives a wrong interpretation for which should be accepted is the common factor to both and that is the pure consciousness, for that 'unknowable omniscience' as you say is different from the tiny personality who makes the false claim. You misquote Vedic literature but now listen to this verse:
yena vyaptam akhanda-mandalam idam brahmananda bhankadikim
re re manda-mate tvaya katham aho so 'ham vacah kathyate
kasya tvam kuta agatah katham are samsara bandha-klamas
tattvam tat paricintaya swa-hrdaye-bhrantasya margam tyaja
"O foolish individual spirit soul, how is it that you are says 'I am the supreme who pervades the entire universe?' O individual spirit soul, who has placed you within this material universe? From where have you come? Why are you forced to suffer so greatly within this world? O individual soul, please honestly for a moment reflect within your heart and try to understand what is the actual truth. Please give up this illusory path of the theory of mayavada."
satyaam jnanam anantam is siad by you, but you do not give any qualifications in this statement. Simply you say unidfferentiated brahman. however if it is to be accepted by you, that insentiency inas much as there cannot be a creator, with ahnds, feet, mouth, eyes, body, etc, actually this is offensive.
Those persons who are unofrtunately afflicted with the liver disease jaundice, cannot appreciate the sweetness of sugar candy, in fact to them sugar candy is very bitter. So unfortunate are they that their yellow deseased eyes cannot see the whiteness of a conchshell, because they see everything yellow. In the same why, those persons whose dirty hearts and minds are constantly, frantically making plan after plan for sense gratification, how can they understand what is spiritual purity? Those who are afflicted with the Mayavada disease cannot perceive the happiness in worshipping and glorfying Lord Shri Krishna, Who is the Personality of Godhead full in all wonderful spiritual attributes.
After studying all the revealed scriptures such as the Vedas, Puranans, Upanisads, Vedanta Sutra, how can anyone in their right mind say that the tiny conditioned soul can be entirely the same as this supreme soul, Krishna.
jiva evatu suhkhinah, tesam duhkhaprahanaya shrituresha pravartate
The Lord Himself has given us these Vedic literatures for the benefit of all suffering souls. Out of His own causeless mercy, He has done this due to His supremely compassionate nature, so that we can all again return to His supreme abode and again be happy in His service.
Now out of envy some rascals - Mayavadis - say that everyone is God or the supreme, but still they won't accept the Original Personality of Godhead Shri KRsna as that surpeme - everyone except Him. They even go as far as to say that Rudra, Hiranyagarbha, Indra, Siva, etc but all these names are actually the names of the Supreme Lord, Vishnu. In Vishnu Sahasra Nama these names are attributed to Him only. Others are Rudra dasa, Siva dasa, Indra dasa, etc, for they are all servants of the Supreme. Please try to understand this.
kale krtayuge tada naiva cendradi namadi
visno ranyatra kutracit brahmarudrendra
purvestu namabhih procyate harih
devatatvena cejyah sa brahmadya manunamakah
vaktrtvena pitrtvena karitvenanuvacadarat
iyjante devatah sarvah natu devataya dvacit
In the Krta Yuga (Satya Yuga) Lord Vishnu alone was being worshipped as the SUpreme Person even by Rudra and Indra. Others were addressed according to their function such as preceptor, Lord of the forefathers, etc, but not as Supreme. Only in recent times since the advent of false philosophies such as Buddhism and Mayavada have persons become confused as to who is the Supreme Lord, each fool claiming this one, that one supreme, (including himself).
So my Mayavadi 'Friends", if you, I and everyone and everything else are all actually the same Supreme Brahman and there is no real differentiation or distinction between us, then we are actuall one. If this is true, they your wealth, children house, wife, and all of your possessions are actually mine. There I claim them now, please give them to me at once. My dear Mayavadi Sannyasis, if we are all actually the Supreme, then all the divisions of varnasrama dharma have no meaning, and the orders and prohibitions of the Vedas then are also without meaning. You claim to base your theory on the Vedas, Upanishads, etc, but your theory leads its followers to reject the Vedas which are likened to one's guru. What difference then is there between your theory and atheistic Buddhism? If the Buddhists are heretics and offenders for rejecting the Vedas, why are you also not heretics for the same reasons?
Please don't try to cheat yourselves!
Changing his direction for a second, Madhva then mentioned Carvaka. If dharma and morals are not in line with the Vedic injunctions then these concoctions of over zealous sense enjoyers are to be rejected. As stated in Bhagavad-gita (16.23):
yah sastra-vidhim utsrjya
na sa siddhim avapnoti
na sukham na param gatim
"He who discrads scriptural injunctions and acts according to his own whims attains neither perfection, not happiness, nor the supreme destination, (The lotus feet of the Lord.)
However this Carvaka who says that one's own limited perception is the only instrument of knowledge is spreading a modd which is falsely independant, do what you like, if it feels good do it. Carvaka has completely rejected the authority of the Vedas or any other scripture for that matter. Life is just a combination of atoms, matter and nothing else. There is no soul or supreme soul. There is no after life, and no rewards of action or reaction as there is neither virtue not vice. everything is for sense enjoyment and nothing more. So as long as it lasts, great. What then is the use of thinking of anything else - enjoy for everything ends at death. Love life to the full, for if you done get the best out of life someone else will beat you to it. Simple sense gratification at a fever pitch! Trust nothing, no future however bright, enjoy now before it's too late. What is truth, you cannot prove anything, and to infere, well maybe by accident you may come to the same conclusion as me, but there is no guarantree so why bother with religion and philosophy. Enjoy! Enjoy! At all costs enjoy!
Oh madman Carvaka, we cannot accept your talking as being authentic because you are what you are - a materialistic enjoyer. Your concocted Sutras with speculative tenants we can believe in your authenticity about as mucha s we do the Buddhist who also cannot be considered as authentic for they also outright deny the Vedas. Rather both of you try to invent 'dharma', like an envious person who will not accept that the invention of the wheel has already taken place. for the non acceptance of proven qualities or facts that are plain to see even, are further signs of enviousness. Instead you make cynical remarks to try to minimize the Vedic statements. This philosophy os cynicism if your crest jewel.
Madhva Vijay 15.46 strongly makes it's stand that the persistance of these 'bad-sastras', which are opposed to Vedic understanding, and which defy the Vedas, to those who support these philosophies are faced with a frightening existance in a hellish condition of sufferiong, practically for eternality.
This is also confirmed in Isa Upanisad 9
andham tamah pravisanti
ye 'vidyam upasate
tato bhuya iva te tamo
ya u vidyayam ratah
"Those who engage in the culture of nescient activities whall enter into the darkest region of ignorance. Worse still are those who are engaged in the so-called culture of knowledge."
Also Bhagavad-gita 7.15 states:
na mam duskrtino mudhah
asuram bhavam ashritah
"Those miscreants who are grossly foolish, lowest among mankind, whose knowledge is stolen by illusion, and who partake of the atheistic nature of demons, do not surrender unto Me (Krishna the Supreme Personality of Godhead)."
Shri Isopanisad supports Madhva's statement recorded in Madhva Vijay 15.47 which says that the Vaishnavas worhsip Lord Narayana, Who is known by the Vedas and gives liberation and bliss in the form of personal associaiton with the Lord's transcendental form. Isopanisad mantra 16 says:
pusann ekarse yama surya prajapatya vyuha rasmin samuha
tejo yat te rupam kalyanatamam tat te pasyami
yo sav asau purusah so 'ham asmi
"O My Lord, P primeval philosopher, maintainer of the universe, O regulating principle, destination of the pure devotees, well wisher of the progenitors of mankind, please remove the effulgence (brahmajyoti) of Your transcendental rays so that I can see Your form of bliss. You are the eternal Supreme Personality of Godhead, likened unto the sun, I am also of that nature - sunlike."
You cheating Mayavadis, pasandis (heretics), you try to say that that Supreme Person is formless. It is not so, for He certainly has a form but it is not material, it has spiritual arms and legs, eyes, ears, mouth etc which are made of eternal youth, unlike material bodies. Because of your arrogance born of thinking that you are God, you cannot accept, a person that is unlike you, for you are suffering, narrow minded and unfortunate. This is the disease of this material world - but this Supreme Person is not of this world, and actually nor are you. Actually you are an eternal fragmental part of the Lord like a ray of the sun, Accept this point and serve Him naturally and be happy.
Now take this opportunity to get out of the cycle of repeated birth and death. This human form of life is so rare, don't waste it. Now you are experiencing the unhappiness of samsara (repeated birth , death, old age and disease) but you don't have to. We understand that because you are suffering then due to the pain you want to artificially renounce or deny that which has cuased you pain, but it is not at all necessary. Just try to understand what is what.
The Supreme Personality of Godhead is full of knowledge. He is the enjoyer of a host of transcendnetal pastimes with His devotees. His every desire is immediately fulfilled without the least endeavour. He is full of all transcendental opulences and all auspicious qualities. Where do the Vedas say that He has no qualities of opulences? You are always silenced by these questions.
Something that exists but has no qualities has never been perceived, either in anyone's direct experience or in the Vedic literatures. This misconception of qualityless substance is an illusory phantasmagoria that exists only in the minds of you who propound this maya (illusory) vada (doctrine), It is like a great flower that is imagined to float in the sky. If you think you can substantiate something you have said simply by juggling words and thus saying that you have found some sastric quotation to substantiate your mythical qualityless substance, then I say no intelligent person will believe you, for even the laymen know that when the Vedas explain the Supreme as being without qualities, it is to beunderstood it means material qualities , for He is spiritual by nature.
According to the bhasya of Madhvacarya this pure personalistic philosophy is so straight forward that even a child can nicely understand it, but the devious Mayavadi 'pandits' cannot. This is also supported in Madhva Vijay 9.10.
The Vaisesikas also, as well as you mayavadis, just can't seem to understand how the limbs of the Lord are different from the limbs of His devotees, what to speak of the atheists, for the Lord's body is completely spiritual and so His limbs are naturally spiritual, being made of spiritual substance (saccidananda vigraha) and not mucus, bile and air. Yet even mucus, bile and air can act in a spiritual way when that body which they make up is of the Lords' pure devotess and is engaged nicely in the Lord's service. Just as an iron rod when placed into fire takes on the qualities of fire by association and burns like fire and as long as that separated energy of the fire remains in contact with the original fire, it can remain fire-like. In thesame way, by engaging in the eternal blissful service of the Lord, Shri Krishna, one can become aware of Him, and by His food association in unlimited transcendental forms, His name, His literature, His devotees, one can become not Him, but again happily His.
For those whose minds are attached to the unmanifested, impersonal feature of the Supreme, advancement is very troublesome. To make progress in that disciple is always difficult for those who are embodied.
But those who worship the Lord, giving up all their activities unto Him and being devoted to Him without deviation, engaged in His devotional service and always meditating upon Him, having fixed their minds upon Him, for them my friends the Lord is the swift deliverer from this ocean of birth and death.
As Madhvacarya, sitting before the assembly finishes with on philosophy that has been put under his philosophical scruteny, dismantled, and disgardeed, Madhva moves on to the next candidate.
Trivikrama Pandit was astounded at these revolutionary refutations of Madhva. But he hadn't finished yet, everyone sat with raft attention silent fixed on the words of the acarya.
Now Madhva is talking outwardly with force as if addressing his opponents.
Madhva then turns to the philosophy of Bhaskara Bhatta; your logical deduction that there is not a personality of Godhead but instead some ethereal judge with no form is ridiculous. How can something that has qualitities have substance. This even goes against your philosophy which is that only that which has substance can have qualitities and yet now you say that which has no qualities has substance. How is that? You say that there is no person yet the 'hidden judge' soomehow or another according to you has worshipable pure intelligence that is situated in Brahman.
Madhva says it will be an example of logical dissimilarity comparing a sentient person to being a stone unmoving and unfeeling, or saying that there is no Supreme Controller but simply intelligence, but whose intelligence and where does it come from? Why do you deny the Supreme Personality of Godhead?
There are five kinds of moksa or liberation. Why oh why do all you aforesaid philosophers desire to avoid the Lord?
These five kinds of liberation are (1) to become one with the Lord - merging, (2) to live on the same planet as the Lord and enjoy his association, (3) to enjoy the same oppulences as the Lord, (4) to possess the similar bodily features as the Lord of Vaikuntha having four arms, etc, (5) to gain the Lord's personal association constantly and be the Lord's eternal companion.
But all of you are so persistant that either there is no controller, so as not to impere your sense gratification, or you want to be one with the Supreme, you are revealed for your motives. You are all envious of that Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Shri Krishna, so you deny Him. Actually you are denying yourselves, that is denying yourselves of His personal association.
The Vaishnava only wants the Lord, in the immature stage of liberation one may want the oppulence of the Lord, but as one goes through different stages of spiritual existance, the dormant love for Krishna in Vrndavana becomes prominent in the devotees heart.
As such the pure Vaishnava would never accept such a liberation as to merge as one with the Lord giving up his own individual existance, for the nature of the individual soul is pleasure seeking, and simply wants to serve the Lord in a loving exchange.
These philosophies that avoid surrender to the Supreme Personality of Godhead who is full in all personal attributes and who interacts in loving exchanges with his devotees. Those frustrated hard hearted philosophers are simply lost and out of lack of fulfillment will eventually fall down to base material activities in this material world if they haven't already.
At the end of this overview of philosophies Madhvacarya smilingly accepted the now humble Trivikrama Pandita.
Trivikrama Pandita begged, "O master, please forgive all of my offenses due to my ignorance. Please give me permanent shelter in the form of service at your lotus like feet, please accept me as your disciple."
Madhva did just that and Trivikrama Panditacarya was duely initiated by Panca samskaras and imprinted with 'heat mudras' of the cakra and conch on various places of the upper body.
Now wearing the distinctive Gopicanda marks of 'namams' tilak on the forehead, temples, both arms, chest, and abdomen as well as the neck and back - the symbols of disc, conch, club, lotus and Holy Name became part of the new attire for Trivikrama Pandit.
Madhva now taught him personally from his Brahma Sutra Bhasya to which the greatly learned Trivikrama Pandit wrote a glossary complimentry commentry on Madhva's Sutra entitled Tattva Pradeepa, after receiving acarya Madhva's blessings.
TRIVIKRAMA PANDIT GLORIFIES MADHVA'S LITERARY WORKS
Trivikrama Pandit then glorified Madhvacarya and his Brahma Sutra, saying that because his Brahma SUtra is so straight forward and profound it is like an ocean of milk that I relish to churn, for further and further realizations can be had continuously due to it's truely spiritual nature of not being able to be exhausted.
Trivikrama Pandit then started to glorify each of Madhva's works starting with the Upanisads, Gita Bhasya and Gita-tatparya. He then glorified Mahabharat-Tatparya which includes the Ramayana. He glorified the Pancaratra Sastra and the Puranas of which Shrimad Bhagavatam is the cream. In Madhva's commentry on the Shrimad Bhagavatam he really concentrated his efforts on emphasising the supremacy of the Supreme Personality of Godhead and the Lord's relationship with His devotees thus out of the 18,000 verses of the Bhagavatam, Madhva only commented on around 1600 verses and most of those came from the tenth and eleventh Cantos. Again we stress, he had a specific mission with set goals. He could have elaborated on every verse but no, to save time and make his point only the necessary was dealt with and in other places and in other books other points were brought out. This is again further proof of the pure Vaishnava acarya. According to time, place and circumstances he preaches accordingly. Knowing well the mentality of the persons of the age certain subjects or approaches to a subject may be avoided or greatly elaborated on so as not to confuse but to clarify and illuminate the actual path to further enlightenment for those of us who are wandering in the Kali Yuga.
For those persons who only know the Puranas you have compiled Bhagavat-Tatparya-Nirnaya which shines spiritual light on the path of perfection. Oh pujaris, what to speak of Tantrasara dealing in four chapters with rituals, mantra and the methods for worshipping the Supreme Personality of Godhead, Lord Vishnu, and is compared to a well-wishing desire tree.
In the Kathalaksana you gave given all the doctrines in the form of wrangling discussions giving all of your victorious conclusions. And in Pramanalaksana you first of all render different entities as objects of knowledge and understanding. Then reducing every instance to the most minute aspect of definition to secondly establish congnition of the full perception of everything in question. So pramana or validity of everything in difference is established.
Vishnu-Tattva-Nirnaya refutes all foes, by counter-attack as Arjuna used the weapons of Nivata Kavacas and Astras so this book of six hundred slokas smashes all rivals and establishes the Vedas, Mahabharata, Ramayana, Pancaratra, Vishnu Purana in fact all Sad-Agama Sastra to be valid scriptures and sacred.
In Tattwodyota which throws questions into differences between the jivas and the Lord, this calls all bluffs for the cheaters who are like dry dead forests waiting for the spark of fire to ignite their dry dead wood which is carried by you, O son of the wind god.
Your Anubhasya gives unlimited subject matter pertaining to Dwaita Vedanta, attacking the misinterpretations of the Advaitists false understanding in the Upanisads, you state that they cannot be taken as authorities on Vedanta. You declare it boldly, to only follow those who have seen AVedanta as it is, who define Brahman as the Supreme Personality of Godhead. By chanting the Lord's Holy Names and meditating on His personal forms in Shri Vrndavana Dhama, and by worshiping that same Lord in the form of the Deity, one can please the Lord. Thus all kinds of karma manifest and unmanifest in the form of seeds, dormant in the heart are nullified by this process. In this way those pious souls even though conditioned can become jivan muktas (liberated souls), so either eternally liberated or eternally bound actually by your process the soul can become liberated by the Lord's mercy.
You again state that at the time of death one's body enters into fire and the devotee is then carried by Vayu to the Lord, thus you are giving us this process to come to the Lord.
But unfortunately there are still those who maintain a sinful state of existance and who remain in this world to take their next birth via the smoke.
O how wonderful you are, you have covered us by your Yogamaya as Mother Yasoda was covered by Lord Krishna's Yogamaya. Upon looking into Krishna's mouth she clearly saw all the universes so by your books now we are clearly seeing things as they are.
These wonderful pastimes of Lord Shri Krishna are captured by your epitone of Mahabharata, the pastimes of Vrndavana, and the Lord's pastimes with the Pandavas in Hastinapura in only eighty one verses. Being Bhima you reveal the secrets of the Mahabharat that surprise one and all.
Comprised of forty verses you have compiled the daily duties of a Vaishnava, ritual and sadhana entitled Sadacara-Smriti. In Jayanti-Kalpa (Nirnaya) all the auspicious outlines for observing Lord Krishna's Janmastami (birthday) are given, it's importance, and what observances and austerities are to be performed for the Lord's pleasure.
Fasting all day on that Janmastami day, with a special worship at midnight, the Lord's appearance time. That celebrated eight day of the dark fortnight in the auspicious month of Sravana (August) when the Rohini nakshata comes just after midnight is the best of days. In the prison of Kamsa in Mathura Mandala the Lord of the three worlds has appeared to perform His pastimes.
You also glorified the Lord in this way whilst you were a small boy by composing the strota Kanduka Stuti.
kaliyanagaksvelanihanta sarasijadala vikasitanayanh
santatamasman patu murarih satatagasamajavakha patinirath
Coming down through the skies the Ganges River comes to touch Your lotus feet. Under those soft feet which as the resort of many wonderful lotus flowers you control the Kaliya serpent. Krishna's eyes are like a full bloomed lotus. His bodily complexion is like a dark blue monsoon cloud. His presence dissipates all darkness. My dear Lord Murari, please give me Your mercy and make the darkness of ignorance fly away like scared birds in the presence of Garuda.
And now the Kanduka Stuti is sung by all local children as they play their childhood games.
Other works such as Jyotis-Sastra and Tithinirnaya give the astrological means by which one can calculate these great appearance days.
In Yati Pranava Kalpa you explain what is the proper mood for the Vaishnava sannyasi and how to chant pranava japa. The sannyasi taking permission from his spiritual master should wander all over the earth. He should teach the glories of the Lord to the people in general and practice those teachings oneself. He who wanders like this remaining self satified, giving up contact and attachment for the material world, subdueing anger, and eating only light foods. He, with controlled senses should fix his mind on meditation on the Lord. That paramahamsa sannyasi who has control over his mind, body and speech always practices bhakti yoga free from unwanted association.
To display that his mind, actions and words are only used in the Lord's service he carries a staff representing each of those functions. Thus he is known as a tridandin, he is neither born nor dead from the standpoint of the scriptures after giving up this body for his life is dedicated solely to the Lord having given up even auspicious and inauspicious acts.
Vayu Purana 17.1-7, Vaikhanasa Sutra 8-9
You state, "Never shall I blaspheme Vishnu or the Vaishnavas, never shall I deem Vishnu to be on par to or identical to the host of demigods, and never shall I associate with those who propound the philosphy of exclusive oneness of the jiva and the Lord."
Who can count the innumerable jewels in the ocean of Madhvacarya's sayings, poems, and various forms of praises of the Lord. These storehouses of touchstones, which fulfill all the desires of the devotees, are considered unto places of pilgrimage for those same swam-like devotees. Only miserly persons, who resemble crows take shelter of other literatures and look down on Loka-Guru Madhvacarya's books.
Trivirama Pandit then asked Madhvacarya if he could summerize everything in all his books. Madhvacarya then composed on the spot his Anu-Vyakhyana, which is much like a critical commentry with his own unique fiery logic and arguments, put over with true eloquence and style. In this book Madhva deals with the monistic views and breaks them down to the most minute degree exposing all shapes of undifferentiated oneness. Even the Ista Siddhi admission of the irrational concept of Mayavada, and Avidya philosophy.
Madhva had four of his best disciples as scribes as he dictated this ANu-Vyakhyana in four powerful chapters of some 1900 stanzas. Everyone was completely amazed, as his Brahma Sutra Bhasya was around 2000 stanzas, how could he re-iterate the same points without saying the same things twice. even the best of pandits were bewildered at Madhva's simplicity of his arguments and the thoroughness and depth to which each of the points has been excavated.
It is stated in local Madhva tradition that one quite amazing pastimes hardened. Madhva, as he preached to his disciples, would often quite often direct his preaching towards the bullock who pulled the cart on which Madhva's books were carried. Madhvacarya often stated that this bullock was much more attentive to the discussion on these sacred texts than any of his disciples. Whenever the bullock would get a chance He could be seen within ear shot of Madhva's discourse either chewing the cud, or just listening.
After much, in the form of Madhva's remarks glorifying this bullock as opposed to the hearing propensity of his disciples - some of his disciples became a bit envious of the bullock and cursed the bullock to due by being bitten by a poisonous snake. However when Madhva heard about this, he gave a twist to the curse. Lo and behold when the snake came and bit the bullock the snake died, and the bullock instead of dying began to recite Madhva's strotram.35
Trivikrama Panditacarya records an interesting story:
It is mentioned that sometimes when Madhva was worshipping Udupi Krishna he would close the outer doors so as no-one could see in. Occassionly the doors would stay closed for much longer than normal, on one such occassion TRivikrama Pandit out of his inquisitiveness peeped in and to his surprise he saw Mukhyaprana expanded Hanuman worshipping Rama, Bhima worshipping Krishna and Madhva worshipping Veda Vyasa. Inspired by this vision Trivikrama Pandit then composed his Hari Vayu Stuti as when Madhva alone came out from this puja. Madhva wanting only praise for the Lord told Trivikrama to arrange for the Lord's priases to proceed and follow this work. Trivikrama Pandita then composed his Shri Nrsimha Nakha Stuti, and arranged to put the two verses before and after Hari Vayu Stuti as Madhvacarya had instructed him.
THE PASSING AWAY OF MADHVA'S PARENTS AND MADHVA'S BROTHER JOINING HIM
In the village of Pajaka, Madhyageha Bhatta (Madhva's father) lived to a ripe old age. Both he and his good wife Vedavati would joyfully remember the wonderful pastimes of their small boy Vasudeva, the austerities they had performed before his advent, and the happiness he had brought to their lives. Just due to the nature of this material world, along with the happiness came times of anxiety. Sometimes fearing Vasudeva lost or attacked by wild animals and snakes, the intensity of their pure love knew no bounds for their wonderful son.
In their marriage they had had other sons but they had all died. This is partially why they underwent their twelve years of austerity to get a good son.
After Madhva had gone off to take sannyasa at the birth of another son, the new son, Madhva's brother, grew into a fine young boy. The youngest son made great use of his youth. Studying the scriptures he was a simple and austere boy, Madhyageha Bhatta was much reminded of himself when he was a boy. Madhyageha Bhatta helped greatly in the boy's education, but could not supply wealth or worldly gooods, for he did not have them himself. The boy grew and finally took to householdlife. Still as a faithful and grateful son he stayed at home with his new wife and cared for his old parents into their old age.
But now his father, Madhyageha Bhatta, in his ninties, passed away. Due to his pure devotion to Lord Narayana in the form of ANantasana we need only to conclude that Madhyageha Bhatta achieved the Lord's abode.
For Madhyageha Bhatta's chaste and faithful life long companion, the death of her husband was the end of everything. She could only painfully remain in her bodily situation a very short time, and then passing away of bereavement she went to rejoin her husband.
Madhva's younger brother didn't bother Madhva with the antyesthi funeral rites etc for Madhva himself was a walking dead man. A sannyasi and even by civil law in India a renounciate is not obliged to be involved in such wordly activities.