Sivaachaaryas and Shankara's date

Ravishankar Venkatraman sunlike at HOTMAIL.COM
Tue Oct 30 08:01:28 CST 2001


Sri Sankara mantions several names in his Bhashyas and many of them cannot
be even identified with conspicuous personalities in our history. They could
be taken as people he met during his dig-vijaya. However, some indologists
identify personalities like Dharmakirti and  hence the theory of Sankara's
date to the 8th century A.D., based on Dharmakirti's date is accepted. The
dates corresponding to 5th century B.C are matching with the dates of
acharyas like Gaudapada and other personalities like Kumarila Bhatta, who
Sankara has met in his lifetime. I do not want to get into this controversy,
as it would never be resolved, for lack of proper records in Indian history.

However, the point I am trying to make is that it is not something unusual
that Sankara has not commented about Appar or Sambandhar or vice versa.
There is a sloka in Soundaryalahiri (I think it is 75th sloka), where
Sankara mentions that the 'Dravida sishu' got knowledge after having the
milk served by Parvati. Here some scholers identify this sishu to be Gnana
Sambandhar and others Sankara himself.

AnantAnandagiri Sankara Vijaya (ASV) talks in detail of the refutation of
Saiva doctrines. Interested readers can get a detail (page 216-229) from
Jonathan Bader's book "Conquest of the four quarters". I think that this is
the most intersting debate when compared to others. Sri Sankara refutes the
idea of branding the body with lingas in the forehead and so on. He debates
with staunch saivites by name Pratipakshacandabhairava,
Vipaksasula,Bhaktagraganya and Paramatakalananda - does not sound familiar
at all.


>From: vidya S Jayaraman <paanini at YAHOO.COM>
>Reply-To: List for advaita vedanta as taught by Shri Shankara
>Subject: Re: Sivaachaaryas and Shankara's date
>Date: Mon, 29 Oct 2001 09:33:52 -0800
>Looking at the dates of Shivacaryas and Saiva
>siddhanta theology raised some questions on Sankara's
>date :
>1.Siddanta Saivam was well-established in the 7th
>century where Appar and Sambandar lived and visited
>temples including KAnchipuram and Tiruvanaikkaval.
>so no guesses about the mode of worship prevailing in
>those temples.And Adi shankara changed the mode of
>worship in Tiruvanaikkaval.
>2.His references in the Brahma Sutra bhashya points
>only to the pAsupatas and he ascended the sarvajna
>peetam  kashmir.But Why no mention about Kashmiri
>Saivism ?
>His criticisms are aimed at the dualist pastoralist
>sects and there is no mention about the monist
>pastoralism of Lakulisa and the triadist siddhanta as
>it was evolved during the times of Sambandhar and
>Any explanations/previous postings in the group
>regarding these?
>Do You Yahoo!?
>Make a great connection at Yahoo! Personals.

Get your FREE download of MSN Explorer at

More information about the Advaita-l mailing list