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Life, Times, and Impact

Traditional discussions of Śrīdharasvāmin often begin with a story. Members of the Advaita community in Varanasi felt that Śrīdharasvāmin’s leanings toward bhakti (devotion) had threatened the doctrine of advaita (nonduality). The community of Advaita scholars decided to place his written work before an image of Viṣṇu in Varanasi so that the lord could judge it. It is said the lord appeared to them and said:

I know, Śuka knows, and Vyāsa may or may not know,

[but] Śrīdhar…

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Edelmann, Jonathan, “Śrīdharasvāmin”, in: Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism Online, Editor-in-Chief Associate Editors Knut A. Jacobsen, Helene Basu, Angelika Malinar, Vasudha Narayanan. Consulted online on 19 October 2021 <>
First published online: 2018

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