Tattva Sandarbha – Section 4

December 1, 2006 at 4:16 pm Leave a comment

BY SRILA JIVA GOSWAMI

Sri Gopal Bhatta Gosvami, born in a South Indian Brahmana family, and a friend of Srila Rupa and Sanatana Gosvamis, has compiled a book after studying the works of the eminent Vaishnavas.

Sri Jiva Toshani Commentary

Srila Gopal Bhatta Gosvami was the son of Venkata Bhatta, the head priest of the temple of Lord Ranganatha at Sri Rangam, which was the headquarters of the Sri Vaishnava sect. In his youth Gopala Bhatta had the opportunity to study the writings of the eminent Vaishnavas of the Sri Sampradaya. While touring South India, Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu stayed at the house of Venkata Bhatta for the four months of the rainy season. There He held philosophical discussions with Venkata Bhatta, as is evident from the Caitanya Caritamrita, Madhya Lila, chapter nine, and the Bhakti Ratnakara, first wave.

At that time Gopala Bhatta was a young boy and he learnt the intricacies of the Gaudiya Vaishnava philosophy directly from Sri Caitanya. On Lord Caitanya’s order he later moved to Vrindavana where he established the temple of Sri Radha-Ramana. Hence he is one of the great authorities on Sri Caitanya Mahaprabhu’s teachings

From the references that occur later on, the eminent Vaishnavas referred to here are Sri Ramanujacarya, Sri Madhvacarya and Sridhara Swami. Srila Gopala Bhatta Gosvami had composed a book in which he culled the essence from the works of these previous Vaishnava scholars and acaryas explaining all the essential truths about Krishna, Supreme Personality of Godhead. That book is the basis for Jiva Gosvami’s present work. In this way he hints at the authenticity of his work, for by basing it on Srila Gopala Bhatta Gosvami’s book he implies that the work is authoritative, free of any concocted ideas.

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