Authorship of Sarvadarzanasamgraha

Vidyasankar Sundaresan vsundaresan at HOTMAIL.COM
Tue Feb 24 21:59:34 UTC 1998

Yaroslav V. Vassilkov wrote on behalf of Dmitry Olenev -

>        recently I learned a very curious fact from the preface to the
>edition of "NyaayaalaMkaara" (Gaekwad Oriental Series, N169, 1981,
>the real author of SarvadarzanasaMgraha was, perhaps, a certain
>CannibhaTTa, and not Maadhavaacaarya. I think, there is no need to
>the importance of the fact since SDS is one of the most popular sources
>Indian philosophy and its history.

The author of the preface to the nyAyAlaMkAra is perhaps confused.

The author of SDS specifically names himself as mAdhava, and he is also
related to the famous sAyaNa - SrImat sAyaNadugdhAbdhi kaustubhena
vipaScitA kriyate mAdhavAryeNa sarvadarSanasangrahaH.

The first verse of SDS salutes one sarvajnavishNu -

pAraM gataM sakaladarSanasAgarANAM
AtmocitArthacaritArthitasarvalokaM |
SArngapANitanayaM nikhilAgamajnaM
sarvajnavishNugurumanvahamASraye'haM ||

Here, sarvajnavishNu is described as the son of one SArngapANi. In the
section on advaita, SDS also quotes sarvajnavishNu's .rjuvivaraNa (a
commentary on prakASAtman's vivaraNa), as follows - taduktaM
vivaraNavivaraNe sahajasarvajnavishNubhaTTopAdhyAyaiH .....

In the .rjuvivaraNa, sarvajnavishNu is described as the son of janArdana
and a disciple of svAmIndra pUjyapAda - iti SrI svamIndrapUjyapAdaSishya
sarvaSAstraviSArada janArdanAtmaja sarvajnavishNubhattopAdhyAyak.rtau
.... Probably, SArngapANi and janArdana are the same person, since the
quotation from "vivaraNavivaraNa" in SDS is definitely from the
.rjuvivaraNa. Another way to resolve this is to postulate that the
sarvajnavishNu mentioned in the salutation (son of SArngapANi) is
different from the sahajasarvajnavishNu (son of janArdana) described as
the author of the vivaraNavivaraNa.

sahajasarvajnavishNu is relevant to the problem because cennubhaTTa was
his younger son. In cennubhaTTa's tarkabhAshA prakASikA, we have the
following - SrI hariharamahArAjaparipAlitena sahajasarvajnavishNu
devArAdhyatanUjena sarvajnAnujena cennubhaTTena viracitA. The king named
here is most probably Harihara II of Vijayanagar. cennubhaTTa also gives
his father's name in his commentary on the rAmasaundaryalaharI -
SrIvishNudevArAdhyasya cennubhaTTo'yamAtmajaH rAmasaundaryalaharIkAvyaM

The relationship between sahajasarvajnavishNu (son of janArdana) and
cennubhaTTa is clearly that of father and son. That between
sarvajnavishNu (son of SArngapANi) and the author of SDS is that of guru
and disciple. And if the words "sAyaNadugdhAbdhi kaustubha" from the SDS
are to be accepted, mAdhava, the author of SDS, is the *son* of sAyaNa,
although many modern scholars identify him with mAdhava, the *brother*
of sAyaNa. mAdhava has further been identified with vidyAraNyasvAmin,
the author of many advaita works. In either case, the author of SDS
cannot be cennubhaTTa, who is not related to sAyaNa, as far as one can
make out. However, there are still many unresolved questions about other

1. Was mAdhava, the author of SDS, the brother or the son of sAyaNa?

2. Was vidyAraNya the same as mAdhava, and if so, which one was he - son
or brother of sAyaNa - or was he a completely different mAdhava? This
has been debated back and forth for many years now, with no clear

3. Was janArdana, the father of sarvajnavishNu, the same as janArdana,
the author of a work named tarkasangraha? The latter has been identified
with Anandagiri, the TIkAkAra of the advaita school.

4. An intriguing question, which I'm pretty sure nobody has asked
before, is the name devArAdhya appended to sarvajnavishNu. Does it
indicate that he belonged to the ArAdhya groups of brAhmaNas from
Karnataka? The ArAdhyas revered Basava, and followed some vIraSaiva
rituals, although they did not accept the extreme vIraSaiva rejection of
the authority of the Vedas. Another ArAdhya author in the advaita school
was mallanArAdhya, who wrote the advaitaratna, which has a commentary
named tattvadIpana, written by n.rsimhASrama of bhedadhikkAra fame.

The relationship between vIraSaivas and advaitins is relevant to the
early history of Vijayanagar, as there is a legend that revANasiddha
(one of the four siddhas of vIraSaiva tradition) appeared in a dream to
harihara, and directed him to go to vidyAraNya. Some vIraSaivas also
seek to identify vidyASankara, guru of vidyAraNya, with one kASIvilAsa
kriyASakti, who is mentioned in early Vijayanagar inscriptions.

S. Vidyasankar

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