Inspirator: His Divine Holiness Acharya Swamishree Purushottampriyadasji Maharaj

There are five schools of thought and ideology in Hindu philosophy. They are each elaborate and complex and are concerned with the distinction between the Lord, man and the nature of the cosmos. Advaita, Dvaita-dvaita, Dvaita, Shuddhadvaita and Vishishtadvaita.

Vishishtadvaita philosophy was founded by Shree Ramanujacharya (11th century AD). The ideology is that there are three ultimate realities; The Lord, souls and matter (or maya's creation). Of these only the Lord is the independent reality and the other two are dependent upon Him. The soul and the matter are thus distinct from the Lord but not separate from Him.

According to Shree Ramanujacharya, the Lord is the creator, preserver and the destroyer of the world. Liberation is not absorption with the Lord, but union with Him.

Lord Swaminarayan accepted the basics of this ideology but with distinct differences indicating His own divinity.

Lord Swaminarayan revealed there are five, not three, eternal and real entities; Jeeva, Maya, Ishwar, Bhrama and Parabhrama. Parabhrama is the supreme Lord, the other four entities dependent on and are obedient to Him. These four entities remain distinct, but not separate from the Lord.

Lord Swaminarayan initially unveiled this ideology during a religious debate in Kashi. Kashi is a eminent gathering place for learned scholars and the most holiest of cities in Hinduism. Accompanying His father, Dharamadev at the age of 10, Lord Ghanshyam eloquently lectured to those gathered in sanskrit. Arguing that the Lord has a definitive form, Lord Ghanshyam, advocated the Vishishtadvaita philosophy and explained it further. He added, there are two real and identical entities; the master and the devotee. When the two merge, they appear as one, the master. Yet in reality they remain distinct in their nature and their attributes, with the Lord remaining the master and the soul forever the mastered.

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