Ādi-līlāChapter 10: The Trunk, Branches and Subbranches of the Caitanya Tree

Bhaktivedanta VedaBase: Śrī Caitanya Caritāmṛta Ādi 10.130

baḍa-śākhā eka, — sārvabhauma bhaṭṭācārya

tāńra bhagnī-pati śrī-gopīnāthācārya


baḍa-śākhā eka — one of the biggest branches; sārvabhauma bhaṭṭācāryaSārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya; tāńra bhagnī-pati — his brother-in-law (the husband of Sārvabhauma's sister); śrī-gopīnāthācāryaŚrī Gopīnātha Ācārya.


There was Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya, one of the biggest branches of the tree of the Lord, and his sister's husband, Śrī Gopīnātha Ācārya.


The original name of Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya was Vāsudeva Bhaṭṭācārya. His place of birth, which is known as Vidyānagara, is about two and a half miles away from the Navadvīpa railway station, or Cāńpāhāṭi railway station. His father was a very much celebrated man of the name Maheśvara Viśārada. It is said that Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya was the greatest logician of his time in India. At Mithilā, in Bihar, he became a student of a great professor named Pakṣadhara Miśra, who did not allow any student to note down his explanations of logic. Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya was so talented, however, that he learned the explanations by heart, and when he later returned to Navadvīpa he established a school for the study of logic, thus diminishing the importance of Mithilā. Students from various parts of India still come to Navadvīpa to study logic. According to some authoritative opinions, the celebrated logician Raghunātha Śiromaṇi was also a student of Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya's. In effect, Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya became the leader of all students of logic. Although he was a gṛhastha (householder), he even taught many sannyāsīs in the knowledge of logic.

He started a school at Jagannātha Purī for the study of Vedānta philosophy, of which he was a great scholar. When Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya met Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu, he advised the Lord to learn Vedānta philosophy from him, but later he became a student of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu to understand the real meaning of Vedānta. Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya was so fortunate as to see the six-armed form of Lord Caitanya known as Ṣaḍbhuja. A Ṣaḍbhuja Deity is still situated at one end of the Jagannātha temple. Daily sańkīrtana performances take place in this part of the temple. The meeting of Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya with Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu is vividly described in Madhya-līlā, Chapter Six. Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya wrote a book of one hundred verses named Caitanya-śataka or Suśloka-śataka. Two other verses he wrote, beginning with the words vairāgya-vidyā-nija-bhakti-yoga [Cc. Madya 6.254] and kālān naṣṭaḿ bhakti-yogaḿ nijaḿ yaḥ, are very famous among Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇavas. The Gaura-gaṇoddeśa-dīpikā (119) states that Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya was an incarnation of Bṛhaspati, the learned scholar from the celestial planets.

Gopīnātha Ācārya, who belonged to a respectable brāhmaṇa family, was also an inhabitant of Navadvīpa and a constant companion of the Lord. He was the husband of Sārvabhauma Bhaṭṭācārya's sister. In the Gaura-gaṇoddeśa-dīpikā (178) it is described that he was formerly the gopī named Ratnāvalī. According to the opinion of others, he was an incarnation of Brahmā.

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