Siddhanta Sangraha of Sri Sailacharya

by E. Sowmya Narayanan | 2008 | 30,562 words

Siddhanta Sangraha Chapter 22 (English translation), entitled “the vyuharupa” as included in the critical edition and study. The Siddhanta Samgraha is a Sanskrit philosophical text dealing with Vishishtadvaita in five hundred Sanskrit verses. It was written by Shri Shailacarya (18th century) and closely follows the philosophy of Vedanta Deshika (13th century).

Chapter 22 - The Vyūharūpa

190. Then the divine couple by themselves taking the form of vyūha creates the sentient beings known as vyaṣṭi sṛṣṭi. For the purpose of vyaṣṭi sṛṣṭi the vyūha form becomes four fold and it has been firmly established on the authority of pramāṇas.

191. In that, the first one namely, vāsudeva has six qualities as in Para Vāsudeva (jñāna, śakti, bala, aiśvarya, vīrya and tejas). These six qualities are for the purpose of meditative worship by the Yogins.

192. The other three of vyūha forms namely, saṅkarṣaṇa, pradyumna and aniruddha have two qualities each. The saṅkarṣaṇa form of vyūha is the cause of vyaṣṭi saṃhāra by becoming the inner-self of Rudra.

193. The pradyumna form of does the vyaṣṭi sṛṣṭi by becoming the inner-self of Brahma (the four faced Lord). The Supreme Lord, Himself taking the form of aniruddha is involved in the protection of vyaṣṭi beings.

194. In the act of protection the Supreme Lord Himself acts independently. It is because in this act no other beings are capable of protecting the devotees.

195. The Paravāsudeva of transcendental nature who is otherwise called as Parabrahma (the Supreme) is the cause for the whole Universe. He Himself is present as antaryāmi state in the effect states (kāryakoṭis). The incarnations such as Rāma, Krsṇa etc., which are also effects, is for the purpose of seekers of protection (rakṣaṇa arthinaḥ), who seeks it.

196. This is corroborated by the statement “paritrāṇāya sādhūnām” etc. This is in no way affect the paratva form (Supreme State) of the Lord; instead exhibit the auspicious qualities of the Supreme.

197. The names such Nārāyaṇa etc., will not convey any other God other than the Supreme Lord Vāsudeva. But the words denoting other Gods, namely, Śiva etc., will convey the Supreme Lord due to its strength of meaning (artha pauṣkalya). This has been stated in purāṇas.[1] At the time of deluge all the creations will lapse back in Mahat Tattva which in turn merges with prakṛti.

198. During that situation the Supreme Lord exists as the one and only soul of the Universe and He is called as an all-pervading entity namely, Nārāyaṇa. Thus, the word Nārāyaṇa is stated as the supreme cause of the Universe.

199. Therefore, He is different from the Trimūrtis and is the final tattva and is called as Śrīpati, Puruṣottama etc. The Viṣṇu in Trimūrtis is not the creator of the Universe. The cause for the entire creation (samaṣṭi sṛṣṭi) is Puruṣottama only and He is the Ultimate Tattva.

200. The word Puruṣottama means the onle [one?] who is present everywhere (vyāpanāt), who is the supporter of all (bharaṇāt) and who is different from the prakṛti and jīva and who remains as the principal of the above two. This has been clearly explained in the Bhagavad Gīta.[2]

201. The scriptures unequivocally declare that the cause of the creation of the whole universe is not Brahma and not Śiva but it is none other than Nārāyaṇa.

202. It may be objected that in some purāṇas it is stated the Śiva as the cause of the universe. But it must be understood that such statements are made due to the influence of tamoguṇa and hence they are not to be taken as valid as they are contradictory to the śruti.

Footnotes and references:


See Tattva Muktā Kalāpa, III-9


See Bhagavad Gītā, X-42.


Rasasastra category This concludes The Vyuharupa according to Vishishtadvaita philosophy explained by Shri Shailacarya. This book follows the model of Vedanta Deshika although the Vishishta Advaita school was originally expounded by Shri Ramanuja. Vishishta-Advaita is one of the various sub-schools of Vedanta which itself represents one of the six orthodox schools of Hindu Philosophy. They highlight the importance of the Upanishads, the Bhagavad Gita and the Brahma Sutras.

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