Author: S M Srinivasa Chari
Publisher: Motilal Banarsidass
ISBN/UPC (if available): 8120810988
This is a scholarly book on one of the oldest living religions of India. Tracing the basic tenets of Vaisnavism to the hymns of Rgveda, the earliest religious literature of the world, the author has shown how an ancient cult has developed itself by successive stages into a well-formulated monotheistic system in the hands of Ramanuja and his illustrious followers. In the second part of the book the fundamental philosophical theories of Visistadvaita Vedanta are presented to prove that Vaisnavism is not a mere religious cult, but has a credible philosophic foundation. In the third part of the book the distinctive theological doctrines of Vaisnavism are discussed thoroughly on the basis of original sources.
Among the basic doctrines covered are: Visnu as Supreme deity, Visnu as inseparably related to goddess Sri, Visnu and His Attributes, Visnu and His Incarnations, Visnu as the supreme goal of life and Prapatti as the means of attaining Visnu. The religious discipline and ethical values which constitute an important feature of Vaisnavism are treated in the fourth part of the book. This volume makes available for the first time in English a comprehensive account of Vaisnavism. Students of comparative religion will find in this book a valuable source of authentic information.
The book by S M Srinivasa Chari fills the relative lack of good, authentic English books on Vaisnavism, The book has an excellent glossary, an index, and a good bibliography.
The Vedanta Kesari, Aug, 1996
Srinivasa Chari has done a good job, tracing the historical development of Vaisnavism right from the monotheism of Rgveda, Precision and erudition mark Srinivasa Chari’s exposition of the absolute Brahman as the adorable God of religion, the nature of the individual soul, and the doctrine of cosmic matter.
-C S Ramakrishnan
The Hindu, August, 1995
Dr Srinivasa Chari’s exposition of Vaisnavism is conditioned, admittedly, by the knowledge of the essentials imparted to him by his spiritual preceptor, the late Sri Gostipuram Sowmya Narayanacharya.
-The Book Review, December, 1995
SCHEME OF TRANSLITERATION
LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS
PART I: HISTORICAL DEVELOPMENT OF VAISNAVISM
Historical Development of Vaisnavism
PART II: PHILOSOPHY OF VAISNAVISM
The Doctrine of Ultimate Reality
The Doctrine of Individual Self
The Doctrine of cosmic Matter
The Doctrine of Bhakti-Yoga
The Doctrine of Moksa
PART III: THEOLOGY OF VAISNAVISM
Vishnu as supreme being
Vishnu and Goddess Sri
Visnu and His Attributes
Vishnu and His Incarnations
Visnu and Nitya-Vibhuti
Visnu and Jiva
Prapatti as a Means of Attainment of Visnu
Visnu as supreme Goal of Life
PART IV: RELIGIOUS DISCIPLINE OF VAISNAVISM
Religious Discipline of Vaisnavism