[Advaita-l] Re: bhAgavata purANa

S Jayanarayanan sjayana at yahoo.com
Wed Aug 23 19:37:32 CDT 2006

--- Vidyasankar Sundaresan <svidyasankar at hotmail.com> wrote:


> > > -- Right from the times of rAmAnuja, it seems the purANas have
> been> classified into sAttvika, rAjasika and tAmasika. And when two
> purANas> conflict, the sAttvika purANa prevails over the other etc.
> Is this> acceptable to the advaitins? What is also the opinion of
> shaivite advaitic> commentators like srIkanTha, appaya dIkShita
> etc. on this issue?> 
> It would be interesting to know the SAstra pramANa for classifying
> the purANa-s thus. I don't know whether a scholar like appayya
> dIkshita ever felt the need to address this classification.

I have come across an English translation of some Puranas by Smarta
Pandits that contained a couple of references in the foreword about
such a classification to be found in the Puranas themselves, but
unfortunately I can't remember the source offhand now. However, the
two Puranic references given disagreed with each other as to which
Puranas were Sattvic, Rajasic and Tamasic. It should be noted that
there are references to the Bhagavata Purana in other Puranas.

Swami Sivananda also teaches such a classification, but doesn't
provide detailed references:


The Puranas
By Sri Swami Sivananda
"The main Puranas are: Vishnu Purana, Naradiya Purana, Srimad
Bhagavata Purana, Garuda (Suparna) Purana, Padma Purana, Varaha
Purana, Brahma Purana, Brahmanda Purana, Brahma Vaivarta Purana,
Markandeya Purana, Bhavishya Purana, Vamana Purana, Matsya Purana,
Kurma Purana, Linga Purana, Siva Purana, Skanda Purana and Agni
Purana. Of these, six are Sattvic Puranas and glorify Vishnu; six are
Rajasic and glorify Brahma; six are Tamasic and they glorify Siva."

The Wikipedia, although not always a trustworthy source, gives a
reference from the Padma Purana:


According to the Padma Purana [3], these are the Mahapuranas and
their corresponding qualities:
    * Goodness: Vishnu Purana, Bhagavata Purana, Naradeya Purana,
Garuda Purana, Padma Purana, Varaha Purana
    * Passion: Brahmanda Purana, Brahma Vaivarta Purana, Markandeya
Purana, Bhavishya Purana, Vamana Purana, Brahma Purana
    * Ignorance: Matsya Purana, Kurma purana, Linga Purana, Shiva
Purana, Skanda Purana, Agni Purana

[3] Padma Purana, Uttara-khanda, 236.18-21

Do You Yahoo!?
Tired of spam?  Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around 

More information about the Advaita-l mailing list