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Bhagavata Tatparya Nirnaya – Sri Madhvacharya

 Bhagavata Tatparya Nirnaya is a commentary in prose on 1,600 verses out of the 18,000 verses of Srimad Bhagavad purana. It is one of the principal works of Sri Madhvacharya (1238 – 1317 CE) philosopher-sage who founded the Dvaita (dualistic) school of Hindu philosophy.

The interpretation of Sri Madhvacharya is in accordance with the dictum that the exposition of Vedas is to be done with the aid of epics and Puranas. His exposition embodies a systematic attempt at an enduring integration of Vishnu in Vedas and Puranas with Brahman of Vedanta. He achieves this through a comprehensive survey of the Puranic and pancaratra sources and harmonizes them with Brahma Sutras of Badarayana. In the process, he reconciles the seeming contradictions of the texts and highlights the essentially theistic realism of Srimad Bhagavata Purana.

As an exponent of the theory that God alone is an independent and non-dual reality, Sri Madhvacharya through his exposition of the tales and episodes in Srimad Bhagavata Purana, points to the reality of the world and its values. He preaches the ethics of action without selfish interests, the importance of the means, knowledge, devotion and dispassion.

His annotations are concise and are supported by quotations from more than 195 works other than the well known ones.

Pancaratra – notably the Brahmatarka, Kaileya, Tantra-bhagavata and Maha Sanatkumara Samhita – quoted by him provide an additional authenticity to this line of interpretation.

To Sri Madhvacharya, the cardinal objective of Srimad Bhagavata Purana is to establish the transcendent majesty of Vishnu. Its underlying creed, according to him, is the dominant theory of difference, plurality of selves and their essential difference and their intrinsic gradation, even in release. The prominent feature of Srimad Bhagavata Purana is its portrayal of the central ontological concept of the twin principles of independence and dependence represented by God and selves respectively.

Bhagavata Tatparya Nirnaya clearly proves the dependence of eternal categories, i.e. nityapadarthas like prakriti, jiva, time etc, on Brahman for their very existence, permanence, and other characteristics. It also brings into focus the clear recognition of the difference between god and the self and constitutes the saving knowledge.