Proponents of Bhakti Movement – Part II
Nimbraka (13th Century)(Bheda/Abheda)
- Younger contemporary of Ramnuja who propounded the theory of Dvaita Philosophy and the philosophy of BhedaAbheda.
- According to him, Brahman or the supreme soul transform itself into the souls of the world, which are therefore real, distinct and different from Brahman.
- Like VishishtAdvaita, the BhedaAbheda school also believes that world and Brahman are both equally real, and that the work is a part of Brahman. The difference is on emphasis only.
- Analogy of Bheda/Abheda is the Sun and the Sun beam.
- Preacher of Vaishvanite Bhakti in Telangana region who believed that the people were trapped in physical bodies constricted by Prakrti (matter) and that only by surrender to Radha-Krishna and not through their own efforts could they attain the necessary grace for liberation from rebirth.
- He also founded the Sanak Sampradaya.
Vallabhacharaya (15th Century)(ShudhAdvaita)
- Born in Benaras to a Telugu Brahman family in the 15th century who propagated his doctrine of Bhakti through God Krishna whom he fondly addressed as Shrinath ji.
- He lived at the court of Krishnadeva Raya and Chaitanya Mahaprabhu was one of his worthy contemporary.
- He founded Pushtimarga(path of grace), a path that teaches a devotee how to offer selfless love and devotion to Shrinath ji without seeking anything in return except love.
- He propounded the philosophy of Shudhadvaita (Pure Monism) which forms the basis of Pushtimarg devotional practice.
- As in VishishtAdvaita, ShudhAdvaita too indicates that the entire universe is the manifestation of Brahman. The universe exists as it were as an aspect of Brahman without undergoing any change. (Two sides of a coin)
- Although ShudhAdvaita, calls itself monism, but it does recognise the presence of both the Universe and Brahman, being equally real. Hence there exist two realities. Even if we say that the Universe is a part of Brahman, it exists as a different reality of Brahman.
- He founded the Rudra Sampradaya.
- He along with his disciple Surdas, who even though was blind was largely instrumental in popularising the Krishna cult in North India.