Bhakti A Critical Appraisal of Madhusudana Sarasvati
Krishnajee Ayyagari
  • ISBN 13 : 9788194815877
  • year : 2021
  • language : English
  • binding : Hardbound
Madhusudana Sarasvati (1540-1647), was one of the greatest exponents of Advaitism in the Post-Sankara era. He made valuable contribution to the knowledge of Advaitism with his works like Siddhantabindu, Advaitasiddhi, and Vedāntakalpalatikā etc. The most famous among them is Advaitasiddhi, in which he has upheld the Advaita and forcefully refuted the criticism by Sri Vyasatīrtha in his work Nyamrṛta. He flourished during the period when the Bhakti movement is gaining widespread popularity throughout the country which influenced scholars as well as laymen. The Interreligious rivalry and wrangles were at peak. He was an ardent devotee of Śrī Kṛṣṇa since his childhood and continued the worship of his Ista, even after resorting to Sannyāsa. He wrote an exclusive treatise on Bhakti to Śrī Kṛṣṇa called Bhakti-Rasayana, based on Bhagavatapurāṇa, in which he asserted that Bhakti is an independent path for liberation. Bhakti is the highest goal of life, and it is not a mere path but an end itself and Kṛṣṇa is none else than Parabrahman. The Advaitic system has Mokṣa as the highest goal and only through Jñana one can achieve that goal. Brahman is the only realty. The above assertion of Madhusudana, who is an exponent of Advaita, is considered as a paradox and intriguing. A review of the literature we find that there are only few studies on the subject and there is no unanimity.