[Advaita-l] Chitrapur Matha

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Mon Jul 8 02:28:02 EDT 2019

Copying a post on FB by Sri Natraj Maneshinde:


Here is an interesting books which has a compilation of numerous
Shastra-pramanas on various topics of Dharma.


The compilation is based on the upadeshas, delivered by Shri Keshavashrama
Swamiji (1785 - 1823 ) of Chitrapur math, to the Saraswat Brahmanas of
south Canara who had given up Smaarta sampradaya and had embraced Maadhva
dharma. It is said that by his Upadeshas, Swami Keshavashram ji Maharaj was
able to revert a large number of Smaarta Saraswat Brahmanas who had gone

Below is an excerpt from the preface of this book which describes the
context in which these upadeshas were given :

" Our first four Swamijis—H. H. Parijnanashram I, H. H Shankarashram I, H.
H. Parijnanashram II, and H. H. Shankarashram II—are reported not to have
gone on official tours beyond South of Kalyanpur in South Kanara. The
reason was that almost all the Chitrapur Saraswats in these regions had
begun to owe allegiance to the Udupi Maths following the Dwaita sampradaya.
They had forsaken Shiva puja, had begun to wear vertical caste marks of
gopichandan, and given up the Adwaita system of thought. H.H. Keshavashram
Swamiji, on coming to know of this, specially organised a digvijaya to the
south as far as Hosadurga, now in Kerala. At each of the places He visited,
He seems to have given this Upadesh to the assembled persons in so
effective a manner that He was able to win back our ‘wandering sheep’ to
the original fold.

The Upadesh, as we have it now, consists of weighty and apposite quotations
from several indisputably authoritative works, and its beauty lies in the
selection of these quota­ tions. Firstly, they are in the logical sequence
of thought; secondly, they convince by the sheer logic of their reasoning,
and thirdly, they are drawn variously from the vast domain of our
scriptures. This systematic and logical way of thought and exposition must
have been a charateristic common to all our revered Gurus, beginning with
Goudapadacharya, so well exemplified later in the great discourses of H. H.
Anandashram Swamiji, which we have had the privilege of hearing.

What we necessarily miss in this Upadesh is the eloquent and illuminating
words with which H.H Keshavashram Swamiji must have expounded each of these
great shlokas for the benefit of his hearers. But the way these have been
strung together clearly points to the process of thought and the logical
reasoning of the great Swamiji in His efforts to win back the ‘wander­ing’
Saraswats of the time to the Smartha Bhagavata sampradaya. How greatly
successful He was in these efforts is clearly shown by the following:—When
the then ‘reigning’ Swamiji of the Udipi Math got reports of this digvijaya
of H. H. Shree Keshavashram Swamiji and the great ‘reclamation’ work He had
done for His shishya-varga, he seems to have burst out with the remark that
H. H. Shree Keshavashram was a Veer Narasimha Avatar ! ”



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