Hinduism and Tribal Religions

Living Edition
| Editors: Pankaj Jain, Rita Sherma, Madhu Khanna

Śaṅkarācāryas

Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-024-1036-5_617-1

Synonyms

Definition

Shankaracaryas are the nominal leaders of the Dasnami sampradaya of Hindu ascetics. There are four commonly recognized Shankaracaryas, each seated on the throne of a vidyapith (“seat of knowledge”) said to have been established by Adi Shankaracarya, the eighth or ninth century philosopher of Advaita Vedanta.

Main Text

The Shankaracarya vidyapiths (“seats of knowledge”) of India derive from the work of the eighth or ninth century Hindu reformer, Adi Shankara, born in what is today Kalady, Kerala. Having left home as a child to live as a sadhu, Shankara is reputed to have written his major commentaries on the Bhagavad-Gita, the Brahma Sutras, and several of the Upanishads while still a teenager; after which, he began a teaching career that carried him to the far points of India. Hinduism itself had become deeply diversified by this point, based on the fragmenting of the subcontinent into various feudal kingdoms following the periods of unification...

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References

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    Cenkner W (1983) A tradition of teachers: Shankara and the Jagadgurus today. Motilal Banarsidass, VaranasiGoogle Scholar
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    Samuel G (2010) The origins of yoga and Tantra, Indic religions to the thirteenth century. Cambridge University Press, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
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    Sawyer D (1993) The monastic organization of Banarsi Dandi sadhus. In: Hertel B, Humes C (eds) Living Banaras: Hindu religion in cultural context. SUNY, AlbanyGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Religion and PhilosophyMaine College of ArtPortlandUSA