Tattva is a Sanskrit word meaning'thatness','principle','reality' or'truth'. According to various Indian schools of philosophy, a tattva is an element or aspect of reality. In some traditions, they are conceived as an aspect of deity. Although the number of tattvas varies depending on the philosophical school, together they are thought to form the basis of all our experience; the Samkhya philosophy uses a system of 25 tattvas. In Buddhism, the equivalent is the list of dhammas. Jain philosophy can be described in various ways, but the most acceptable tradition is to describe it in terms of the Tattvas or fundamentals. Without knowing them one cannot progress towards liberation. According to major Jain text, these are: Jiva - Souls and living things Ajiva - Non-living things Asrava - Influx of karma Bandha - The bondage of karma Samvara - The stoppage of influx of karma Nirjara - Shedding of karma Moksha - Liberation or SalvationEach one of these fundamental principles are discussed and explained by Jain Scholars in depth.
There are two examples. A man rides a wooden boat to reach the other side of the river. Now the man is Jiva, the boat is ajiva. Now the boat has a water flows in; that incoming of water is Asrava. Now the man tries to save the boat by blocking the hole; that blockage is Samvara. Now the man reaches his destination, Moksha. Consider a family living in a house. One day, they were enjoying a fresh cool breeze coming through their open doors and windows of the house. However, the weather changed to a terrible dust storm; the family, realizing the storm, closed the windows. But, by the time they could close all the doors and windows some of the dust had been blown into the house. After closing the doors and the windows, they started clearing the dust that had come in to make the house clean again; this simple scenario can be interpreted as follows: Jivas are represented by the living people. Ajiva is represented by the house. Asrava is represented by the influx of dust. Bandha is represented by the accumulation of dust in the house.
Samvara is represented by the closing of the windows to stop the accumulation of dust. Nirjara is represented by the cleaning up of collected dust from the house. Moksha is represented by the cleaned house, similar to the shedding off all karmic particles from the soul. In Buddhism the term "dhamma/dharma" is being used for the constitutional elements. Early Buddhist philosophy used several lists, such as namarupa and the five skandhas, to analyse reality; the Abhidhamma tradition elaborated on these lists. The Samkhya philosophy regards the Universe as consisting of two eternal realities: Purusha and Prakrti, it is therefore a dualist philosophy. The Purusha is the centre of consciousness, whereas the Prakriti is the source of all material existence; the twenty-five tattva system of Samkhya concerns itself only with the tangible aspect of creation, theorizing that Prakriti is the source of the world of becoming. It is the first tattva and is seen as pure potentiality that evolves itself successively into twenty-four additional tattvas or principles.
In Kashmir Shaivite philosophy, the tattvas are inclusive of consciousness as well as material existence. The 36 tattvas of Shaivism are divided into three groups: Shuddha tattvas The first five tattvas are known as the shuddha or'pure' tattvas, they are known as the tattvas of universal experience. Shuddha-ashuddha tattvas The next seven tattvas are known as the shuddha-ashuddha or'pure-impure' tattvas, they are the tattvas of limited individual experience. Ashuddha tattvas The last twenty-four tattvas are known as ` impure' tattvas; the first of these is prakriti and they include the tattvas of mental operation, sensible experience, materiality. Within Puranic literatures and general Vaishnava philosophy tattva is used to denote certain categories or types of being or energies such as: Krishna-tattva The Supreme personality of Godhead; the causative factor of everything including other Tattva. Vishnu-tattva Any incarnation or expansion of Krishna. Sakti-Tattva The multifarious energies of the Lord Krishna.
It includes his internal potency Yoga Maya and material prakrti. Jiva-tattva The living souls. Siva-tattva Lord Siva is not considered to be a jiva. Mahat-tattva The total material energy. In Gaudiya Vaishnava philosophy there are a total of five primary tattvas described in terms of living beings, which are collectively known as the Pancha Tattva and described as follows: "Spiritually there are no differences between these five tattvas, for on the transcendental platform everything is absolute, yet there are varieties in the spiritual world, in order to taste these spiritual varieties one should distinguish between them". In Hindu tantrism there are five tattvas creating global energy cycles of tattvic tides beginning at dawn with Akasha and ending with Prithvi: Akasha – symbolized by a black egg Vayu – symbolized by a blue circle Tejas – symbolized by a red triangle Apas – symbolized by a silver crescent Prithvi – symbolized by a yellow squareEach complete cycle lasts two hours; this system of five tattvas which each can be combined with another, was adapted by the Golden Dawn.
The Siddha system of traditional medicine of ancient India was derived by Tamil Siddhas or the spiritual scientists of Tamil Nadu. Accordi
Ajivika is one of the nāstika or "heterodox" schools of Indian philosophy. Purportedly founded in the 5th century BCE by Makkhali Gosala, it was a śramaṇa movement and a major rival of vedic religion, early Buddhism and Jainism. Ājīvikas were organised renunciates. Original scriptures of the Ājīvika school of philosophy may once have existed, but these are unavailable and lost, their theories are extracted from mentions of Ajivikas in the secondary sources of ancient Indian literature. Scholars question whether Ājīvika philosophy has been and summarized in these secondary sources, as they were written by groups competing with and adversarial to the philosophy and religious practices of the Ajivikas, it is therefore that much of the information available about the Ājīvikas is inaccurate to some degree, characterisations of them should be regarded and critically. The Ājīvika school is known for its Niyati doctrine of absolute determinism, the premise that there is no free will, that everything that has happened, is happening and will happen is preordained and a function of cosmic principles.
Ājīvikas considered the karma doctrine as a fallacy. Ajivika metaphysics included a theory of atoms, adapted in Vaisheshika school, where everything was composed of atoms, qualities emerged from aggregates of atoms, but the aggregation and nature of these atoms was predetermined by cosmic forces. Ājīvikas were considered as atheists. They believed that in every living being is an ātman -- a central premise of Jainism. Founded in what is now the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, Ājīvika philosophy reached the height of its popularity during the rule of the Mauryan emperor Bindusara, around the 4th century BCE; this school of thought thereafter declined, but survived for nearly 2,000 years through the 14th century CE in the southern Indian states of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. The Ājīvika philosophy, along with the Cārvāka philosophy, appealed most to the warrior and mercantile classes of ancient Indian society. Ajivika is derived from Ajiva which means "livelihood, mode of life"; the term Ajivika means "those following special rules with regard to Iivelihood", sometimes connoting "religious mendicants" in ancient Sanskrit and Pali texts.
Aaseevagam can be split as aasu + eevu + agam. Where "aasu" means errorless and available knowledge, "eevu" means solutions and "agam" means the place. Ajivika means a place; the name Ajivika for an entire philosophy resonates with its core belief in "no free will" and complete niyati "inner order of things, self-command, predeterminism", leading to the premise that good simple living is not a means to salvation or moksha, just a means to true livelihood, predetermined profession and way of life. The name came to imply that school of Indian philosophy which lived a good simple mendicant-like livelihood for its own sake and as part of its predeterministic beliefs, rather than for the sake of after-life or motivated by any soteriological reasons; some scholars spell Ajivika as Ajivaka. Ājīvika philosophy is cited in ancient texts of Buddhism and Jainism to Makkhali Gosala, a contemporary of the Buddha and Mahavira. Exact origins of Ājīvika is unknown, but accepted to be the 5th century BCE. Primary sources and literature of the Ājīvikas is lost, or yet to be found.
Everything, known about Ājīvika history and its philosophy is from secondary sources, such as the ancient and medieval texts of India. Inconsistent fragments of Ājīvika history is found in Jain texts such as the Bhagvati Sutra and Buddhist texts such as the Samaññaphala Sutta, Buddhaghosa's commentary on Sammannaphala Sutta, with a few mentions in Hindu texts such as Vayu Purana; the Ājīvikas reached the height of their prominence in the late 1st millennium BCE declined, yet continued to exist in south India until the 14th Century CE, as evidenced by inscriptions found in southern India. Ancient texts of Buddhism and Jainism mention a city in the 1st millennium BCE named Savatthi as the hub of the Ājīvikas. In part of the common era, inscriptions suggests that the Ājīvikas had a significant presence in the South Indian state of Karnataka, prominently in Kolar district and some places of Tamil Nadu; the Ājīvika philosophy spread in ancient South Asia, with a Sangha Geham for Ājīvikas on the island now known as Sri Lanka and extending into the western state of Gujarat by the 4th century BCE, the era of the Maurya Empire.
Riepe refers to Ājīvikas as a distinct heterodox school of Indian tradition. Raju states that "Ājīvikas and Cārvākas can be called Hindus", adds that "the word Hinduism has no definite meaning". Epigraphical evidence suggests that emperor Ashoka, in the 3rd century BCE, considered Ājīvikas to be more related to the schools of Hinduism than to Buddhists, Jainas or other Indian schools of thought. Makkhali Gosala is considered as the founder of the Ājīvika movement; some sources state that Gosala was only a leader of a large Ājīvika congregation of ascetics, but not the founder of the movement himself. The Swiss Indologist Jarl Charpentier and others suggest the Ājīvika tradition existed in India well before the birth of Makkhali Gosala, citing a variety of ancient Indian texts. Gosala was believed to be born in Tiruppatur of Tiruchirappalli district in Tamil Nadu and was the son of Mankha, a professional mendica
The Vedas are a large body of religious texts originating in ancient India. Composed in Vedic Sanskrit, the texts constitute the oldest layer of Sanskrit literature and the oldest scriptures of Hinduism. Hindus consider the Vedas to be apauruṣeya, which means "not of a man, superhuman" and "impersonal, authorless". Vedas are called śruti literature, distinguishing them from other religious texts, which are called smṛti; the Veda, for orthodox Indian theologians, are considered revelations seen by ancient sages after intense meditation, texts that have been more preserved since ancient times. In the Hindu Epic the Mahabharata, the creation of Vedas is credited to Brahma; the Vedic hymns themselves assert that they were skillfully created by Rishis, after inspired creativity, just as a carpenter builds a chariot. According to tradition, Vyasa is the compiler of the Vedas, who arranged the four kinds of mantras into four Samhitas. There are four Vedas: the Yajurveda, the Samaveda and the Atharvaveda.
Each Veda has been subclassified into four major text types – the Samhitas, the Aranyakas, the Brahmanas, the Upanishads. Some scholars add a fifth category – the Upasanas; the various Indian philosophies and denominations have taken differing positions on the Vedas. Schools of Indian philosophy which cite the Vedas as their scriptural authority are classified as "orthodox". Other śramaṇa traditions, such as Lokayata, Ajivika and Jainism, which did not regard the Vedas as authorities, are referred to as "heterodox" or "non-orthodox" schools. Despite their differences, just like the texts of the śramaṇa traditions, the layers of texts in the Vedas discuss similar ideas and concepts; the Sanskrit word véda "knowledge, wisdom" is derived from the root vid- "to know". This is reconstructed as being derived from the Proto-Indo-European root *u̯eid-, meaning "see" or "know", cognate to Greek εἶδος "aspect", "form"; this is not to be confused is the homonymous 1st and 3rd person singular perfect tense véda, cognate to Greek οἶδα oida "I know".
Root cognates are English wit, etc.. Latin videō "I see", etc; the Sanskrit term veda as a common noun means "knowledge". The term in some contexts, such as hymn 10.93.11 of the Rigveda, means "obtaining or finding wealth, property", while in some others it means "a bunch of grass together" as in a broom or for ritual fire. A related word Vedena appears in hymn 8.19.5 of the Rigveda. It was translated by Ralph T. H. Griffith as "ritual lore", as "studying the Veda" by the 14th-century Indian scholar Sayana, as "bundle of grass" by Max Müller, as "with the Veda" by H. H. Wilson. Vedas are called Vaymoli in parts of South India. Marai means "hidden, a secret, mystery", but Tamil Naanmarai mentioned in Tholkappiam isn't Sanskrit Vedas. In some south Indian communities such as Iyengars, the word Veda includes the Tamil writings of the Alvar saints, such as Divya Prabandham, for example Tiruvaymoli; the Vedas are among the oldest sacred texts. The Samhitas date to 1700–1100 BCE, the "circum-Vedic" texts, as well as the redaction of the Samhitas, date to c.
1000–500 BCE, resulting in a Vedic period, spanning the mid 2nd to mid 1st millennium BCE, or the Late Bronze Age and the Iron Age. The Vedic period reaches its peak only after the composition of the mantra texts, with the establishment of the various shakhas all over Northern India which annotated the mantra samhitas with Brahmana discussions of their meaning, reaches its end in the age of Buddha and Panini and the rise of the Mahajanapadas. Michael Witzel gives a time span of c. 1500 to c. 500–400 BCE. Witzel makes special reference to the Near Eastern Mitanni material of the 14th century BCE, the only epigraphic record of Indo-Aryan contemporary to the Rigvedic period, he gives 150 BCE as a terminus ante quem for all Vedic Sanskrit literature, 1200 BCE as terminus post quem for the Atharvaveda. Transmission of texts in the Vedic period was by oral tradition, preserved with precision with the help of elaborate mnemonic techniques. A literary tradition is traceable in post-Vedic times, after the rise of Buddhism in the Maurya period earliest in the Kanva recension of the Yajurveda about the 1st century BCE.
Witzel suggests the possibility of written Vedic texts towards the end of 1st millennium BCE. Some scholars such as Jack Goody state that "the Vedas are not the product of an oral society", basing this view by comparing inconsistencies in the transmitted versions of literature from various oral societies such as the Greek and other cultures noting that the Vedic literature is too consistent and vast to have been composed and transmitted orally across generations, without being written down. However, adds Goody, the Vedic texts involved both a written and oral tradition, calling it a "parallel products of a literate society". Due to the ephemeral nature of the manuscript material, surviving manuscripts surpass an age of a few hundred years; the Sampurnanand Sanskrit University has a Rigveda manuscript from the 14th century. The Vedas, Vedic rituals and its ancillary sciences called the Vedangas, were part of the curriculum at ancient universities such as at Ta
Atomism is a natural philosophy that developed in several ancient traditions. References to the concept of atomism and its atoms appeared in both ancient Greek and ancient Indian philosophical traditions; the ancient Greek atomists theorized that nature consists of two fundamental principles: atom and void. Unlike their modern scientific namesake in atomic theory, philosophical atoms come in an infinite variety of shapes and sizes, each indestructible and surrounded by a void where they collide with the others or hook together forming a cluster. Clusters of different shapes and positions give rise to the various macroscopic substances in the world; the particles of chemical matter for which chemists and other natural philosophers of the early 19th century found experimental evidence were thought to be indivisible, therefore were given the name "atom", long used by the atomist philosophy. Although the connection to historical atomism is at best tenuous, elementary particles have become a modern analog of philosophical atoms.
Philosophical atomism is a reductive argument. Atomism stands in contrast to a substance theory wherein a prime material continuum remains qualitatively invariant under division. Indian Buddhists, such as Dharmakirti and others developed distinctive theories of atomism, for example, involving momentary atoms, that flash in and out of existence. In the 5th century BCE, Leucippus and his pupil Democritus proposed that all matter was composed of small indivisible particles called atoms. Nothing whatsoever is known about Leucippus except. Democritus, by contrast, was a prolific writer, who wrote over eighty known treatises, none of which have survived to the present day complete. However, a massive number of fragments and quotations of his writings have survived; these are the main source of information on his teachings about atoms. Democritus's argument for the existence of atoms hinged on the idea that it is impossible to keep dividing matter for infinity and that matter must therefore be made up of tiny particles.
Democritus believed that atoms are too small for human senses to detect, they are infinitely many, they come in infinitely many varieties, that they have always existed. They float in a vacuum, which Democritus called the "void", they vary in form and posture; some atoms, he maintained, are convex, others concave, some shaped like hooks, others like eyes. They are moving and colliding into each other. Democritus wrote that atoms and void are the only things that exist and that all other things are said to exist by social convention; the objects humans see in everyday life are composed of many atoms united by random collisions and their forms and materials are determined by what kinds of atom make them up. Human perceptions are caused by atoms as well. Bitterness is caused by small, jagged atoms passing across the tongue. Parmenides denied the existence of motion and void, he believed all existence to be a single, all-encompassing and unchanging mass, that change and motion were mere illusions. This conclusion, as well as the reasoning that led to it, may indeed seem baffling to the modern empirical mind, but Parmenides explicitly rejected sensory experience as the path to an understanding of the universe, instead used purely abstract reasoning.
Firstly, he believed. This in turn meant, he wrote all, must be an indivisible unity, for if it were manifold there would have to be a void that could divide it. He stated that the all encompassing Unity is unchanging, for the Unity encompasses all, can be. Democritus accepted most of Parmenides' arguments, except for the idea, he believed change was real, if it was not at least the illusion had to be explained. He thus supported the concept of void, stated that the universe is made up of many Parmenidean entities that move around in the void; the void provides the space in which the atoms can pack or scatter differently. The different possible packings and scatterings within the void make up the shifting outlines and bulk of the objects that organisms feel, eat, hear and taste. While organisms may feel hot or cold and cold have no real existence, they are sensations produced in organisms by the different packings and scatterings of the atoms in the void that compose the object that organisms sense as being "hot" or "cold".
The work of Democritus only survives in secondhand reports, some of which are unreliable or conflicting. Much of the best evidence of Democritus' theory of atomism is reported by Aristotle in his discussions of Democritus' and Plato's contrasting views on the types of indivisibles composing the natural world. Plato, if he had been familiar with the atomism of Democritus, would have objected to its mechanistic materialism, he argued that atoms just crashing into other atoms could never produce the beauty and form of the world
Yoga Sutras of Patanjali
The Yoga Sūtras of Patañjali are a collection of 196 Indian sutras on the theory and practice of yoga. The Yoga Sutras were compiled prior to 400 CE by Sage Patanjali who synthesized and organized knowledge about yoga from older traditions; the Yoga Sūtras of Patañjali was the most translated ancient Indian text in the medieval era, having been translated into about forty Indian languages and two non-Indian languages: Old Javanese and Arabic. The text fell into relative obscurity for nearly 700 years from the 12th to 19th century, made a comeback in late 19th century due to the efforts of Swami Vivekananda, the Theosophical Society and others, it gained prominence again as a comeback classic in the 20th century. Before the 20th century, history indicates that the medieval Indian yoga scene was dominated by the various other texts such as the Bhagavad Gita and the Yoga Vasistha, texts attributed to Yajnavalkya and Hiranyagarbha, as well as literature on hatha yoga, tantric yoga and Pashupata Shaivism yoga rather than the Yoga Sūtras of Patañjali.
In the 20th century, modern practitioners of yoga elevated the Yoga Sutras to a status it never knew previously. Hindu orthodox tradition holds the Yoga Sūtras of Patañjali to be one of the foundational texts of classical Yoga philosophy. However, the appropriation - and misappropriation - of the Yoga Sutras and its influence on systematizations of yoga has been questioned by scholars such as David Gordon White; the Yoga Sūtras text is attributed to Patanjali. Much confusion surrounds this Patañjali, because an author of the same name is credited to be the author of the classic text on Sanskrit grammar named Mahābhāṣya, yet the two works in Sanskrit are different in subject matter. Furthermore, before the time of Bhoja, no known text states. Philipp A. Maas assesses Patañjali's Yogasutra's date to be about 400 CE, based on tracing the commentaries on it published in the first millennium CE, a review of extant literature. Edwin Bryant, on the other hand, surveys the major commentators in his translation of the Yoga Sūtras.
He observes that "Most scholars date the text shortly after the turn of the Common Era, but that it has been placed as early as several centuries before that." Bryant concludes that "A number of scholars have dated the Yoga Sūtras as late as the fourth or fifth century C. E. but these arguments have all been challenged.... All such arguments are problematic."Michele Desmarais summarizes a wide variety of dates assigned to Yogasutra, ranging from 500 BCE to 3rd century CE, noting that there is a paucity of evidence for any certainty. She states the text may have been composed at an earlier date given conflicting theories on how to date it, but latter dates are more accepted by scholars; the Yoga Sutras are a composite of various traditions. The levels of samādhi taught in the text resemble the Buddhist jhanas. According to Feuerstein, the Yoga Sutras are a condensation of two different traditions, namely "eight limb yoga" and action yoga; the kriya yoga part is contained in chapter 1, chapter 2 sutras 1-27, chapter 3 except sutra 54, chapter 4.
The "eight limb yoga" is described in chapter 2 sutras 28-55, chapter 3 sutras 3 and 54. According to Maas, Patañjali's composition was entitled Pātañjalayogaśāstra and consisted of both Sūtras and Bhāṣya. According to Wujastyk, referencing Maas, Patanjali integrated yoga from older traditions in Pātañjalayogaśāstra, added his own explanatory passages to create the unified work that, since 1100 CE, has been considered the work of two people. Together the compilation of Patanjali's sutras and the Vyasabhasya, is called Pātañjalayogaśāstra. According to Maas, this means that the earliest commentary on the Yoga Sūtras, the Bhāṣya, ascribed to some unknown author Vyāsa, was Patañjali's own work. Patañjali divided his Yoga Sutras into four chapters or books, containing in all 196 aphorisms, divided as follows: Samadhi Pada. Samadhi refers to a state of direct and reliable perception where the yogi's self-identity is absorbed into the object meditated upon, collapsing the categories of witness and witnessed.
Samadhi is the main technique the yogin learns by which to dive into the depths of the mind to achieve Kaivalya. The author describes yoga and the nature and the means to attaining samādhi; this chapter contains the famous definitional verse: "Yogaś citta-vritti-nirodhaḥ". Sadhana Pada. Sadhana is the Sanskrit word for "practice" or "discipline". Here the author outlines two forms of Yoga: Ashtanga Yoga. * Kriyā Yoga in the Yoga Sūtras is the practice of three of the Niyamas of Aṣṭāṅga Yoga: tapas, svādhyaya, iśvara praṇidhana – austerity, self-study, devotion to god. * Aṣṭāṅga Yoga is the yoga of eight limbs: Yama, Niyama, Āsana, Prāṇāyāma, Pratyahara, Dhāraṇa, Dhyāna, Samādhi. Vibhuti Pada. Vibhuti is the Sanskrit word for "power" or "manifestation".'Supra-normal powers' are acquired by the practice of yoga. Combined simultaneous practice of Dhāraṇā, Dhyana and Samādhi is referred to as Samyama, is considered a tool of achieving various perfections, or Siddhis; the text warns. Kaivalya Pada. Kaivalya translates to "isolation", but as used in the Sutras stands for emancipation or liberation and is used where other texts employ the term moksha.
The Kaivalya Pada describes the process of liberation a
Vedanta or Uttara Mīmāṃsā is one of the six schools of Hindu philosophy. Vedanta means "end of the Vedas", reflecting ideas that emerged from the speculations and philosophies contained in the Upanishads, it does not stand for one unifying doctrine. Rather it is an umbrella term for many sub-traditions, ranging from dualism to non-dualism, all of which developed on the basis of a common textual connection called the Prasthanatrayi; the Prasthanatrayi is a collective term for the Principal Upanishads, the Brahma Sutras and the Bhagavad Gita. All Vedanta schools, in their deliberations, concern themselves with the following three categories but differ in their views regarding the concept and the relations between them: Brahman – the ultimate metaphysical reality, Ātman / Jivātman – the individual soul or self, Prakriti – the empirical world, ever-changing physical universe and matter; some of the better known sub-traditions of Vedanta include Advaita and Dvaita. Most other Vedantic sub-traditions are subsumed under the term Bhedabheda.
Over time, Vedanta adopted ideas from other orthodox schools like Yoga and Nyaya, through this syncretism, became the most prominent school of Hinduism. Many extant forms of Vaishnavism and Shaktism have been shaped and influenced by the doctrines of different schools of Vedanta; the Vedanta school has had a central influence on Hinduism. The word Vedanta means the end of the Vedas and referred to the Upanishads. Vedanta was concerned with the jñānakāṇḍa or Vedic knowledge part called the Upanishads; the denotation of Vedanta subsequently widened to include the various philosophical traditions based on to the Prasthanatrayi. The Upanishads may be regarded as the end of Vedas in different senses: These were the last literary products of the Vedic period; these mark. These were debated last, in the Brahmacharya stage. Vedanta is one of the six orthodox schools of Indian philosophy, it is called Uttara Mīmāṃsā, the'latter enquiry' or'higher enquiry'. Pūrva Mīmāṃsā deals with the karmakāṇḍa or rituals part in the Vedas.
The Upanishads, the Bhagavadgita and the Brahma Sutras constitute the basis of Vedanta. All schools of Vedanta propound their philosophy by interpreting these texts, collectively called the Prasthanatrayi three sources; the Upanishads, or Śruti prasthāna. The Brahma Sutras, or Nyaya prasthana / Yukti prasthana; the Bhagavad Gita, or Smriti prasthāna. The Brahma Sutras attempted to synthesize the teachings of the Upanishads; the diversity in the teaching of the Upanishads necessitated the systematization of these teachings. This was done in many ways in ancient India, but the only surviving version of this synthesis is the Brahma Sutras of Badarayana. All major Vedantic teachers, including Shankara, Ramanuja, Nimbarka and Madhva, have composed commentaries not only on the Upanishads and Brahma Sutras, but on the Bhagavad Gita; the Bhagavad Gita, due to its syncretism of Samkhya and Upanishadic thought, has played a major role in Vedantic thought. The Upanishads present an associative philosophical inquiry in the form of identifying various doctrines and presenting arguments for or against them.
They form Vedanta interprets them through rigorous philosophical exegesis. Varying interpretations of the Upanishads and their synthesis, the Brahma Sutras, led to the development of different schools of Vedanta over time of which three, five or six are prominent. Bhedabheda, as early as the 7th century CE, or the 4th century CE; some scholars are inclined to consider it as a "tradition" rather than a school of Vedanta. Upadhika, founded by Bhaskara in the 9th Century CE Svabhavikabhedabheda or Dvaitādvaita, founded by Nimbarka in the 7th century CE Achintya Bheda Abheda, founded by Chaitanya Mahaprabhu Advaita, many scholars of which most prominent are Gaudapada and Adi Shankaracharya Vishishtadvaita, prominent scholars are Nathamuni, Yāmuna and Ramanuja Dvaita, founded by Madhvacharya Suddhadvaita, founded by Vallabha The history of Vedanta is divided into two periods: one prior to the composition of the Brahma Sutras and the other encompassing the schools that developed after the Brahma Sutras were written.
Little is known of schools of Vedanta existing before the composition of the Brahma Sutras. It is clear that Badarayana, the writer of Brahma Sutras, was not the first person to systematize the teachings of the Upanishads, as he quotes six Vedantic teachers before him – Ashmarathya, Audulomi, Kashakrtsna and Atreya. References to other early Vedanta teachers – Brahmadatta, Pandaya and Dravidacharya – are found in secondary literature of periods; the works of these ancient teachers have not survived, but based on the quotes attributed to them in literature, Sharma postulates that Ashmarathya and Audulomi were Bhedabheda scholars and Brahmadatta were Advaita scholars, while Tanka and Dravidacharya were either Advaita or Vishistadvaita scholars. Badarayana summarized and interpreted teachings of the Upanishads in the Brahma Sutras called the Vedanta Sutra "written from a Bhedābhed