Madhvacharya Jayanti – History & Significance

Madhvacharya Jayanti is celebrated every year as Madhvacharya Dasami Tithi. This day is celebrated to honor the birth of Shri Madhvacharya, who was born on the auspicious day that is Dusshera, which is also known as Vijaya Dashami.

He is considered to be one of the most prominent philosophers or saints in the era post-Lord Krishna.

He was considered to be a pioneer in his faith among other philosophers like Sri Shankaracharya, advocate of the philosophy of Advaita, Sri Ramanujacharya, advocate of Visishtadvaita, and lastly Shri Madhvacharya advocate of the philosophy of Dvaita.

Madhvacharya Jayanti History

Madhvacharya, also known as Purna Prajna or Ananda Tirtha was born in Karnataka, India in the 13th He was born to a Tulu speaking family, where his father’s name was Naddantillaya, and his mother’s name was Vedavati.

When he was a teenager, he renounced all the worldly pleasures, and became a monk or a ‘sanyasi’, even though this decision was opposed by his father. He was then given the name of Ananda Tirtha when he became the head of the monastery founded by him.

He joined the Brahma Sampradaya Guru Achyutapreksha of the Eklandi order in Udupi.

Madhavaharya was a learned and a very knowledgeable person, who studied the classics of Hindu Philosophy, namely, the Upanishads, Bhagavad Gita and the Brahma Sutras.

He had studied all of these classics and had commented on these, where he is credited with around 37 works, in the language of Sanskrit. His writing is touted as a very short and condensed expression of his thoughts and beliefs.

All of his works have been praised and has been followed, but one of his greatest works is Anuvyakhyana, which can be considered a philosophical supplement to his bhasya in the Brahma Sutra.

Madhvacharya Jayanti - History

Madhvacharya Jayanti Significance

Madhvacharya has been considered as an incarnation of Vayu, who is the son of Lord Vishnu.

He had studied the Upanishads, but he was unconvinced by the philosophy of the oneness of the human soul and God. Most of his teachings are based on the fact that there is a fundamental difference been Atman, which is one’s soul, or oneself and the Brahman, which is the true reality or Lord Vishnu. According to him, they are two different realities, which cannot be changed, where the soul is dependent on Brahman, but they are not similar or identical.

Due to his disagreement with this philosophy, he started his own movement by the name of ‘Dvaita’, which was based on the theory of ‘Dvi’, which basically meant that God, which was Lord Vishnu and human soul, were two different entities, and should not be considered one.

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He even rejected his Guru, because of this, and even stopped considering Achyutrapeksha, his guru in his later writings.

In most of his text, he proclaimed himself to be the third avatar of Vayu, who is the wind God and the son of Lord Vishnu. He claimed that he was like Hanuman, who was the first avatar of Vayu, Bhima, who was the son of Pandu and was the second avatar of Vayu.

He said that he could say this for sure because he had had a personal encounter with Lord Vishnu. According to him, Madhvacharya acted as an intermediary between Lord Vishnu and the devotees of Dvaita. He was the one who guided the devotees of Dvaita towards their journey to Lord Vishnu, to find their devotion and solace in him.

He had been a part of several miracles during his lifetime, which increased the belief and trust that people had in him. It strengthened the trust and faith that his devotees had in him, which eventually increased his popularity among the masses. Legends say that he was able to transform tamarind grains into coins, crossed river Ganges without getting his clothes wet, gave his students and his devotees the nails of his big toes after the lamp went off while they were trying to understand the text at night and fought and won against the wild animals and robbers.

Madhvacharya considered Lord Krishna to be the ultimate God, and who could only be reached through the son of God Vishnu, Vayu. According to him, faith and belief lead to grace of God, and that grace would lead to the liberation of one’s soul.

He based his understanding of liberation on the fact that one should completely surrender oneself entirely to God and his grace. And that faith does not include affection, attraction, or intellectual acceptance, but complete devotion to God.

As mentioned, he rejected other such theories and was of that school of thought that God is the one who is the source of all kinds of suffering and bondage, and he is the one who can give salvation from all kind of pain and suffering and grant a person salvation.

According to him, all kinds of evil and suffering in the world originates from the man himself and is the action of his own doing. Man is affected by his soul being influenced by his sensory organs, which come across material things. Man, event hough is driven by his own free will, but still is influenced to a large extent by his inclinations, his desires, his nature and his karma.

Madhvacharya has been successful in establishing eight mathas, also known as monasteries in Udupi. Apart from the ones in Udupi, there are around twenty-four Mathas in India. Even though the centre of his faith is in the state of Karnataka, but his influence is far and wide in the devotees who follow his writings all over the country.

And the person can achieve this liberation when he discovers his true self and the true nature of God.

How is it celebrated?

All around the country, celebrations are held in honour of this day, especially on the eve of Sri Madhava Navami, where all the temples which are devoted to Madhvacharya are decorated with flowers, garlands and all kinds of ornaments.

People from all over the country come, who are followers of Madhvacharya come together and celebrate this day with much pomp and fervour.

They celebrate this day, with full faith and devotion towards Madhvacharya, by reciting his writings and compositions.

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