Today is Madhva Navami

January 27, 2007

Picture: Vani Rao

In this concluding article of a 3-part series, Vani Rao tells us about Madhvacharya’s works, disciples and his last days.

Madhvacharya’s Works
Acharya’s works are known as “Sarvamoola Granthas” as they include every aspect of the Shastras like Veda, Puraana, Upanishads, Itihaasa, Tantra, Prakarana etc.

The Sarvamoola Granthas consist of Sutra Prasthaana, Gita Prasthaana, Upanishad Prasthaana, Shruthi Prashtaana, PrakaraNa Granthas, Itihaasa Prasthaana, Puraana Prasthaana, Achara Granthas and Stotra Granthas.

His Last Days
Madhvacharya had to face a lot of opposition due to his preaching which were quite opposite to established norms of worship and belief. Tradition exists that his commentaries (on palm leaf books) were stolen and destroyed. There is a story depicting his fearlessness in crossing a flooded river, facing armed robbers in a forest and a Muslim king who had no sympathy towards Hindu monks. He spoke to the sultan in Persian, convincing him that his Allah and his own Narayana are one and the same. Madhwa said to the sultan”We are all citizens of His Kingdom.”

At the age of 79, the Acharya left for his final pilgrimage from Udupi  to Badari–never to be seen again. Legend has it that one of his disciples could not bear to be away from him and went on following him even after he reached Badari, Acharya waved his hand and ordered him to return, and a strong gust of wind blew the disciple away and he landed at the base camp where the other disciples were stationed.

Madhva Navami is observed in his memory, as his birthday. The temple town of Udupi bears Madhva’s memory at every step with eight Mathas and innumerable followers, who throng everyday throughout the year.

Some prominent disciples from Guru Parampara (Not in Chronological Order):
• Sri Akshyobhya Teertha
• Sri Narahari Teertha
• Sri Padmanabha Teertha
• Sri Raghuttama Teertha
• Sri Paada Raja
• Sri Vyaasa Teertha
• Sri Sudheendra Teertha
• Sri Raghavendra Teertha
• Sri Madhava Teertha

Madhvacharya was also known as
• Vasudeva, as named by his parents
• Poornaprajnya (One who knows everything), named after attaining sainthood
• Anandateertha, (One who brings bliss through his preachings)
The name ‘Madhvacharya’ was not given to him by anyone but it comes from the vedas. There is a hymn in the vedas called ‘Balitthaa Sookta’ where the term ‘Madhva’ has been used to refer to ‘Mukhya Praana.’

Sri Swami Sivananda in his essay ‘Madhva’, writes thus: Renunciation, devotion and direct cognition of the Lord through meditation lead to the attainment of salvation. The aspirant should equip himself with the study of the Vedas, control of the senses, dispassion and perfect self-surrender, if he wants to have the vision of the Lord. These are some of the important teachings of Madhvacharya, the renowned exponent of the dualistic school of philosophy.


Part One: Sri Madhvacharya: Incarnation of Mukhya Praana
Part Two: Sri Madhvacharya: Chief proponent of Tattvavāda

13 Responses to “Today is Madhva Navami”

  1. praneshachar Says:

    prathoma hanumanamah
    dwithiyo bheemayevacha
    purnaprajna thrithyasto
    bhagavatkarya sadhakah

    hanuma bheema madhva namoh namahah
    dipicts the 3 avataras of sri madhvacahrya
    today is a great day and a great post concluding one

    all religeous gurus faced stiff opposition when they preached something different but later on accepted as the reality

    vani hats off to your dedication and the vast collection of data and putting it in a manner in which a lay man can understand
    I must admit I myself was not knowing quite a few details which you have indicated
    may god bless you with plenty prospeity and all you wish be granted and you acheive greater heights in the life to come.
    may guru madhva and almighty bless all of us

  2. Vani Says:

    Pranesh sir,

    Thank you for your blessings…I feel very happy to share what I know about our Guru with our people. What I know is very less, what I have to know is vast.

    If my articles have been useful and people have understood more about Madhvacharya, I feel honoured.

    “Sarve Janaah Sukhino Bhavantu”

    • Dear friends,

      I could see all the knowledge and information this group has brought in to light from the great Guru’s writings. I am associated with NanoArk a technology company which has come up with “Sarva Moola Grandhas” published on “waferfiche” technology on gold foil. Please o let meknow if you are interested in the same to be owned (though such great scripts are priceless). Please drop me a note on my email ID : and I will be more than glad to get back on the same.


  3. Shruthi Says:

    Vani, great series…. was very informative. Thanks a ton!

  4. […] HereToday is Madhva Navami it is. […]

  5. Arun Padaki Says:

    Very good work and well presented. Thanks a lot.

  6. J V KulkarNi avaru ide topic mele baredaddu ondu adhbuta kaakataaLeeya!

  7. […] Part One: Sri Madhvacharya: Incarnation of Mukhya Praana  Part Three: Today is Madhva Navami […]

  8. […] Part Two: Sri Madhvacharya: Chief proponent of Tattvavāda Part Three: Today is Madhva Navami […]

  9. nagaraj Says:

    Dear vani.very informative and well written.indeed proud to be a madhwa.i indeed got to know much more of my guru.

  10. ravindra inamdar Says:

    Dear Sir/Madam

    It is a great thing to know about shri Madhvacharya. I have an humble submission to make. Madvacharya was born on VIJAYADASHAMI or DUSHERRA day & Not MADHVANAVAMI.

    MADHVANAVAMI is celeberated as the day of “PRAYANA” or the day on which Madvacharya left for Badari on his final tour & is still in the Vsyaashrama with the divine teacher Shri Vedavyasa.

    Legend as recorded in the MADVA VIJAYA the biographical receording of Shri Madhva charya compiled by Narayapanditacharya the son of Trivikramapanditacharya who was the direct disciple of shri Madhvacharya , has that he ( Madvacharya )was delivering a lecture on AITAREYA UPANISHAD at the Ananteshwara Temple in Udupi when there was a clesteial shower of flowers on him at the end of the discourse & was completely covered by them. When his disciples removed the flowers, he was not to be seen. However he had indicated about this journey to his disciples earlier.

    Hence MADVANAVAMI is not the bithday but a holiest day of rememberance of the great journey of the most noble of the souls ( Vayu Jeevotama ) who has / had a mission of ” Bagavat Karya Sahaka ” to achive the devine providence for the benift of the mankind.

    Please try to correct the copy if possible.

    with the rememberance of the Almighty Purushotama & his most loved Acharya ( Jeevotama )

    ravindra inamdar

  11. praneshachar Says:

    Dear Ravindra Inamdar
    Madhvanami is celebrated as the day on which he entered badariksharam. I agree with you. In the first part of the series of articles on Sri Madhvachyraya Ms.Vani has indicated the year of birth Sri Madhvacharya is believed to be the incarnation of Mukhya Praana and was born in 1238 AD as Vaasudeva to Madhyageha Bhatta (father) and Vedavati (mother) at Pajaka in Udupi District in Karnataka.
    Thanks for the info on how he left udipi after flowrly showers and disappeared.

    “vande vandyam sadaanandam vaasudevam niranjanam
    indiraa pathimaadyaadi varadesha vara pradam”
    -sri madhvaacharya

    great thoughts great minds and great ideas
    vani can see for correction just one word in part III spirit is same fact is little diferent.
    hari sarvottama vayu jeevottama

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