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Jiva Goswami (Sanskrit: जीव गोस्वामी, Jīva Gosvāmī; c. 1513 – 1598)[1] is one of the most prolific and important philosopher and saint from the Gaudiya Vaishnava
Gaudiya Vaishnava
school of Vedanta
Vedanta
tradition, producing a great number of philosophical works on the theology and practice of Bhakti
Bhakti
yoga, Vaishnava Vedanta
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and associated disciplines. He was a member of Six Goswamis of Vrindavan, being the nephew of the two leading figures, Rupa Goswami and Sanatana Goswami.

Contents

1 Birth and early years 2 Jiva leaves home 3 Vrindavana 4 Literary contributions 5 Achintya-bhedabheda philosophy 6 Literary achievements 7 Jiva's demise 8 See also 9 References 10 Further reading 11 External links

Birth and early years[edit] There seems to be some controversy amongst biographers about Jiva Goswami's birth. Some opine that he lived from 1511–1596 CE, while others claim that he lived from 1533 to 1618 CE. Not much is known about Jiva Goswami's childhood. He was born in Ramakeli in the district of Maldah, West Bengal
West Bengal
as the son of Srivallabha Mallika (also known as Anupama), the younger brother of Rupa and Sanatana; his mother's name is unknown. He had a strong affinity to the worship of Krishna
Krishna
even from his childhood and excelled in his education completing his studies in Sanskrit
Sanskrit
Vyakarana (grammar) and Kavya (poetics) within a very short period. When Jiva was three or four years old, his uncles resigned from their ministerial posts at the court of Alauddin Hussein Shah (ruled 1493–1519 CE) after their initial meeting with Chaitanya Mahaprabhu (1486–1534 CE) and they decided to join his ranks as mendicants. Jiva's father, Anupama, also met with Chaitanya at this time and followed in the footsteps of his elder brothers and proceeded to travel with Rupa to Vrindavana. Jiva leaves home[edit]

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Hearing that his father and uncles had made their decision to work in the service of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, the young Jiva desired to join them also.[2] According to the biographical work Bhakti
Bhakti
Ratnakara of Narahari Chakravarti, Jiva had a dream of Chaitanya at this time. This gave him the impetus to leave home and join Rupa and Sanatana. It is unclear from his biographies whether or not Jiva actually ever met Chaitanya personally. Jiva travelled to Navadvipa
Navadvipa
in West Bengal
West Bengal
and met with Nityananda Rama, one of the foremost followers of Chaitanya mahaprabhu. Nityananda
Nityananda
took Jiva to all the holy places in Navadvipa
Navadvipa
and they circumambulated the entire area together. This marked the beginning of the Gaudiya tradition of Navadvipa
Navadvipa
parikrama (circumambulation of the nine sections of Navadvipa). After the pilgrimage, Nityananda
Nityananda
gave his blessings for the young Jiva to proceed towards Vrindavana. Vrindavana[edit] Jiva went on to Benares
Benares
where he studied for some time under the tutelage of Madhusudana Vachaspati,[3] the disciple of the famous logician and Vedantist, Sarvabhauma Bhattacharya. Under Vachaspati, Jiva mastered the six systems of Indian philosophy
Indian philosophy
known as Sad Darsana. In 1535 Jiva arrived in Vrindavana
Vrindavana
where he remained under the tutelage of his uncles, Rupa and Sanatana (by this time his father Anupama had died). He accepted initiation from Rupa Goswami and was taught the esoteric principles of devotion to Krishna.[4] Jiva helped to edit the writings of Rupa and Sanatana and assisted them in their work in propagating Gaudiya Vaishnavism
Gaudiya Vaishnavism
and excavating the lost holy places of Vrindavana. Literary contributions[edit] After the passing of Rupa and Sanatana, Jiva Goswami became the foremost authority in the Gaudiya Vaishnava
Gaudiya Vaishnava
line. In 1542 Jiva established one of the prominent and important temples in the Vrindavana
Vrindavana
area, the Radha
Radha
Damodara mandir, installing deities of Radha
Radha
and Krishna
Krishna
that had been personally carved by Rupa Goswami. At that time he also established the Vishva Vaishnava Raja Sabha (World Vaishnava Association) and the Rupanuga Vidyapitha, an educational facility for Gaudiya Vaishnavas to study the works of Rupa and Sanatana. His erudition and spirituality were so famous that the Moghul emperor Akbar
Akbar
became his ardent admirer and donated paper for his writing. In 1558, Jiva instructed his students, Narottama Dasa, Srinivasa Acarya and Shyamananda, to go to Bengal
Bengal
and propagate the Gaudiya Vaishnava philosophy and to take with them the original manuscripts that had been written by Rupa and Sanatana. Achintya-bhedabheda philosophy[edit] It was in his Sarva-samvadini commentary to the Sat Sandarbhas of Hindu philosophy
Hindu philosophy
that Jiva Goswami first wrote of Achintya Bheda Abheda, the philosophy of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. In essence, the philosophy of Achintya bheda abheda, or "inconceivable oneness and difference", avoids the extremes of Shankara's monistic Advaita vedanta and Madhva's pure dualism (Dvaita) by interpreting the material and spiritual potencies of the Supreme Person (Bhagavan) as being simultaneously one and different with Him. Literary achievements[edit] There are about 25 literary works attributed to Jiva Goswami

[5]

Hari-namamrta-vyakarana: This work is a book on Sanskrit
Sanskrit
grammar wherein each and every word, syllable and grammatical rule is explained in relation to Krishna
Krishna
and his pastimes. Sutra-malika: A grammatical work dealing with the derivation of Sanskrit
Sanskrit
words. Dhatu-sangraha: A work on the verb roots of Sanskrit
Sanskrit
words Radha- Krishna
Krishna
Archana Chandrika Rasamrita-sesa: A work dealing with Sanskrit
Sanskrit
composition. Jiva has based this work on the Sahitya Darpana of Visvanatha Kaviraja, but has used many examples of his own as well as examples from other Goswamis. Madhava-mahotsava: A work describing the coronation ceremony of Radha when she is given the position of Queen of Vrindavana. Sankalpa-kalpadruma:An explanation of the eightfold daily pastimes of Radha
Radha
and Krishna
Krishna
(asta-kaliya-lila) in the form of a prayer. Gopala Virudavali: A short poem by Jiva extolling the glories of Gopala (Krishna) in 38 verses. Bhavartha-suchaka-champu Sukha-Bodhini:A commentary on the Gopala Tapani Upanishad, which has importance in Gaudiya Vaishnavism, as it provides Upanishadic backing for the notion that Krishna
Krishna
is the supreme deity. Dig-Darshini Tika on Brahma
Brahma
Samhita: This is Sri Jiva Gosvami's commentary on the text Brahma
Brahma
Samhita, which was discovered by Chaitanya Mahaprabhu
Chaitanya Mahaprabhu
at the Adi Kesava Temple at Tiruvattaru. Commentary on Bhakti-rasamrita-sindhu: Jiva Goswami wrote his Durgama-sangamani commentary on Rupa Goswami's Bhakti-rasamrita-sindhu. Lochana-rochani :A commentary on Sri Rupa Goswami's Ujjvala Nilamani Yogasara-Stavaka-Tika Agni Puranastha gayatri-bhasya: A commentary on the Brahma
Brahma
Gayatri mantra as found in the ancient Agni Purana, chapters 216–217. Padma Puranokta Krishna-pada-padma-chihna: This text by Jiva describes the insignia found on the feet of Krishna
Krishna
according to the text of the Padma Purana. Sri Radhika-kara-pada-sthita-chihna: In this short work, Jiva Goswami describes the insignia found on the hands and feet of Radha. Laghu Vaishnava Toshani: The Laghu Vaisnava Toshani is Jiva Goswami's commentary to the 10th Canto of Bhagavata Purana. Gopala-Champu: The Gopala-champu is a poetic work written by Jiva and is divided into two parts. The first part is the Purva-champu, which has 33 chapters and describes Krishna's life in Vrindavana. The second section, the Uttara-champu has 37 chapters and describes the pastimes of Krishna
Krishna
after he leaves Vrindavana
Vrindavana
and the separation the residents of Vrindavana
Vrindavana
feel in his absence. Sat Sandarbhas (Six Sandarbhas): According to Jiva Goswami himself, Gopala Bhatta Goswami had already done the preliminary work on these books but could not complete it. Jiva took the work of Gopala Bhatta and expanded it into six books wherein he systematically presents the philosophy of Chaitanya Mahaprabhu
Chaitanya Mahaprabhu
with scriptural evidences. Jiva also wrote an extensive auto-commentary to the Sandarbhas called Sarva-samvadini. The six Sandarbhas are as follows:

Tattva-Sandarbha: Tattva
Tattva
sandarbha is a treatise on the various types of evidences (pramanas) used in Vedic philosophy. Jiva's conclusion is that shabd (divine sound in the form of the Vedic scriptures) is the highest, and of all the scriptures, the Bhagavata Purana
Bhagavata Purana
is the highest. Bhagavat Sandarbha: In the Bhagavat-sandarbha, Jiva Goswami makes the distinction between the impersonal aspect of Godhead (Brahman), the localised form of God
God
within the heart of each living being (Paramatma) and the highest personal aspect of Godhead ( Krishna
Krishna
or Bhagavan). He also describes the spiritual realm of Krishna, the modes of material nature, the mode of pure goodness (visuddha-sattva), the importance of worshipping the deity of Krishna
Krishna
and the nature and qualities of the deity. Paramatma Sandarbha: The Paramatma Sandarbha descrives the characteristics of the Paramatma(the supersoul), and how he resides in all living entities in the universe. This work also discusses the nature of the materially conditioned living entinites, the phenomenal material world, the illusory potency(Maya), the theory of transformation, the various avataras of Krishna, how Krishna reciprocates with his devotees and how Krishna
Krishna
is characterised by six particular opulences. Krishna
Krishna
Sandarbha: In his Krishna-sandarbha, Jiva gives a number of quotes from various scriptures to prove that Krishna
Krishna
is the supreme god. He also discusses the pastimes and qualities of Krishna
Krishna
as well as his avatars and functionary expansions. There is a description of Goloka, the planet of Krishna
Krishna
in relation to Vrindavana
Vrindavana
in the material sphere, the associates of Krishna
Krishna
and their expansions and there is also a description of the Gopis
Gopis
and the topmost position of Radha
Radha
amongst them. Bhakti
Bhakti
Sandarbha: Bhakti-sandarbha explains how devotion to Krishna
Krishna
is executed. It also discusses Varnashrama dharma
Varnashrama dharma
(the socioreligious system established in scriptures), the superexcellent position of devotion to Krishna
Krishna
as compared to other conceptions such as yoga, and the worship of minor deities of the Hindu
Hindu
pantheon as being futile in comparison to the worship of Krishna's devotees. The text also explains liberation of the soul, the position of Shiva
Shiva
as a devotee of Krishna, how unmotivated devotion to Krishna
Krishna
promotes a devotee to the highest spiritual position and numerous other points concerning the performance of Vaishnava devotion. Priti Sandarbha: The Priti-sandarbha is a treatise on divine love, the supreme object being Krishna. Love for God
God
(prema) is considered by Jiva to be the highest form of liberation. Jiva goes on to make a comparative study of other types of liberation but finally concludes that Prema Bhakti
Bhakti
is topmost. There is also a discussion on how to attain Prema, how to awaken it, and the symptoms of one who has attained it. Priti-sandarbha also discusses the distinctions between mundane lust and divine love, the various mellows found amongst the associates of Krishna, the superexcellence of Madhurya-rasa (divine conjugal love), the overlapping of different rasas, and the glories of Radha.

Krama Sandarbha: The Krama-sandarbha is a commentary on the Bhagavata Purana. Sarva-Samvadini: A commentary on the Sat-Sandarbha.[6]

Jiva's demise[edit] Jiva Goswami died in 1596 CE (or 1618 according to some biographies). His samādhi (tomb) is located in the precincts of the Radha-Damodara temple in Vrindavana. According to followers of Gaudiya Vaishnavism, Jiva Goswami is considered to be the incarnation of Vilasa Manjari, an eternal maidservant of Radharani.[7] See also[edit]

Hare Krishna
Krishna
mantra Nityananda Gaudiya Math International Society for Krishna
Krishna
Consciousness Svayam bhagavan

References[edit]

^ [1] "1513–1598 AD" ^ Das Thakur, Narahari. Bhakti
Bhakti
Ratnakara. Ras Bihari Lal & Sons. ISBN 9788184030006.  ^ Tripurari, Swami. "The Life of Sri Jiva Goswami". Harmonist. Archived from the original on 24 March 2013.  ^ Das Thakur, Narahari. Bhakti
Bhakti
Ratnakara. Ras Bihari Lal & Sons. ISBN 9788184030006.  ^ Das Thakur, Narahari. Bhakti
Bhakti
Ratnakara. Ras Bihari Lal & Sons. ISBN 9788184030006.  ^ Das Adhikari, Puru. "Srila Jiva Goswami". Bhaktivedanta Memorial Library. Retrieved 18 May 2013.  ^ Narasingha, Swami
Swami
B.G. "Sri Damodara Katha" (PDF). Gosai.com. Gosai Publishers. 

Further reading[edit]

Six Goswamis of Vrindavan, by Steven Rosen, Folk Books, 1991. ISBN 0-9619763-2-2 Jiva Goswami's Tattva-Sandarbha: Sacred India's Philosophy of Ecstasy, by Swami
Swami
B.V. Tripurari

External links[edit]

Works of Jiva Goswami (iskcondesiretree.info) The Philosophy of Jiva Gosvāmī by Surendranath Dasgupta Srila Jiva Goswami at Radha-Damodar Mandir (radhadamodarmandir.com) Jiva Goswami (bio) (krishna.com) Srila Jiva Goswami (radhakunda.com) Jiva Institute of Vaishnava Studies (dedicated to Translation and Dissemination of Jiva Goswami's works) Gaudiya Grantha Mandira ( Sanskrit
Sanskrit
Texts)

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.