“Krishnastu Bhagwaan Swayam”

Srimate Ramanujaay Namah

Scriptures says that seeing any difference in different forms of God or gradations between them are one of the nine hatred (nava-dweshas) which leads one to “hell of the hells”. To clarify, we don’t say that Narayana is superior to Krishna or Narayana is the father of Krishna or Narayana is having some qualities greater than Krishna. For us, God is unlimited, present in infinite forms. The God, present in infinite forms, present inside every aatmas, source of creation and destination of pralaya is Narayana. Krishna is one of his infinite forms. Rama is one of his infinite forms. We neither differentiate nor apply gradations. Can a person be higher or lower than himself? Can a person ride on his head using ladder?

In all his infinite forms, Narayana is complete, without any blemishes.

Coming to a verse of Srimad Bhagwatam, whose one-fourth has been taken a slogan. The whole concept of Krishna being superior from his own other forms hangs on this single thread of misinterpretation. Any explaination should not contadict Shruti (Vedas and Upnishads). If one doesn’t accept Vedas as highest authority, he can’t be considered a Vaidikan.

  1.   “Eko ha vai Naaraayana Aasit, Na brahma nesaanaha {MahOpanishad (1.1) “ (Only Narayana was there in the very beginning); “Apahatapaapma Divyo devaha Eko Naaraayana:” (Only Narayana is untouched from Paap or sins.)

  2.  Taitriya Aranyaka, Atharv-Veda, “Narayana Pram Brahma, Tattvam Narayan Param

  3. Panini Vyakaran (Astadhyayi AshtadhyAyi (8.4.3)), the `Na-kaaram’ makes the word `nArAyaNa’ a proper noun. The vedas invariably use the `nArAyaNa’ term (rolling the tongue for `na-kAram’) as opposed to `nArAyana’. On the contrary, terms like devki-putra, `Rudra’, `Siva’, `Indra’, `Agni’, `Hiranyagarbha’ are common nouns that have general meanings like  ‘all-attractive’, `Auspicious One’, `Foremost One’, etc. Hence, statements like `Siva eva kevalam’ are addressed to nArAyaNa only as Siva means auspiciousness. The nArAyaNa suktam contains words like ‘Sivamachyutam’, where this is seen explicitly.

  4. There is a rule known as chAga pashu nyAyA, (“Vishesha sabdaartha prathipaadita arthe saamaanya sada ganaartha paryavasaanam”). Comprehending the meaning of common nouns using the meaning conveyed by the particular noun and identifying the common nouns with the entity that is denoted by the particular noun in the given relevant context is “Chaaga Pasu Nyaaya”.Those general terms, common nouns  occurring in the same context as a specific term (proper noun like nArAyaNa) would make these general terms connote the specific term.

  5. For example, shruti says, ‘sacrifice an animal (paShu) at one point and then later on says, ‘sacrifice a goat’. Since the sacrifice in both contexts is the same, it is correct to interpret ‘paShu’ in the first vAkya as referring to the goat only.

  6. Thus, If only Narayan existed prior to deluge, that means Krishna, Ram etc. are his vibhav expansions. Any other interpretation would contradict Shruti. 

 

As per Veer_Raghavacharya

krsnastu bhagwan swayam

Confusions occur because meanings are taken out of context.

In the previous two verses (1.3.26-27), Suta says that the number of incarnations of Sriman nArAyaNa (Hari) are  innumerable like thousands of rivulets flowing from a river & goes on to say that RishIs & devas (demigods), Manus & prajApatis are all amsAs of Lord Hari. Coincidently, some verses before to this Suta listed Balraam and Krishna as 19th and 20th incarnation of Sriman Narayan. So, any meaning should be related to context.

The sloka 1.3.2 talks about bhagavan Aniruddha and 1.3.5 mentions him as Avataari as follows:

यस्याम्भसि शयानस्य योगनिद्रां वितन्वत: ।
नाभिह्रदाम्बुजादासीद्ब्रह्मा विश्वसृजां पति: ॥

From him who sleeps in yoganindra on water, menifisted Brahma, the creater and master of visva from lotus from his lake like navel. 1.3.2

एतन्नानावताराणां निधानं बीजमव्ययम् ।
यस्यांशांशेन सृज्यन्ते देवतिर्यङ्‍नरादय: ॥ 1.3.5

He is the unlimited reservoir of multifarious avataaras, the infallible seed from whose portion of portion (of the potency), devataas, animals and human beings are created.

And the lists of avataaras begin from the 6th sloka. Krishna and Balarama come as 19th and 20th avataara

एकोनविंशे विंशतिमे वृष्णिषु प्राप्य जन्मनी । रामकृष्णाविति भुवो भगवानहरद्भ‍रम् ॥ २३ ॥

In the nineteenth and twentieth incarnations, the Lord advented Himself as Lord Balarāma and Lord Kṛṣṇa in the family of Vṛṣṇi [the Yadu dynasty], and by so doing He removed the burden of the world.

As Krishna says in Bhagwat Gita:

यद्यद्विभूतिमत्सत्त्वं श्रीमदूर्जितमेव वा। तत्तदेवावगच्छ त्वं मम तेजोंऽशसंभवम्।।10.41।।

Whatever object [All living beings] is verily endowed with majesty, possessed of prosperity, or is energetic, you know for certain each of them as having a part of My power as its source.

After, Suta Maharshi mentions various amsha avtaars of Krishna, rishis gathered there got confusion that what’s difference between previously mentioned avtaars (Vaaraha, Narasimha, Rama, Krishna) etc and these rishis, Sanakaadis, sons of Manu? Are they same. Is there no any difference? Suta replies, “among these avtaars, the previous ones were Purna-avtaara.”

Now the question arises as to whether, all these incarnations (rishis, manus and others) are actually “svayam bhagavAn” i.e. nArAyaNa Himself. To clarify that, sUtar is telling in the verse 1.3.28 that rishIs, anya dEvatAs (dEvAs), manus and others (above mentioned avatArams”) are not “svayam bhagavAn” ( not ” nArAyaNA Himself), but KrishNa is bhagavAn Himself. So, obviously, SUta muni wants to reiterate that rishis and others are only amsAvatArAs (ie. They are not same as nArAyaNa) and are different from Narayan’s svayam avatArams (like Ram, KrishNa).

The commentator says, ” Krishnasya swayam bhagwaan iti Krishnasya purnatvam sthapitvam….. purvekteshu hiranyagrabha-sanakaadishu keshaanchit Vaaraaha-Narayana-Matya-Kurma-Mohini-nrisingh-Rama-avtaaraanaam purnanaam ..pramrishyante”.

Meaning: By Swayam bhagwaan address of Krishna, his purna-avataaratvam is established. He is Purna avtaara of Vishnu. Among previously stated Hiranyarbha (Brahma), Sanakaadi etc; Vaaraaha-Narayana-Matya-Kurma-Mohini-nrisingh-Rama etc avtaars are Purna or complete.”

He says in the end, “Vaaraah aadi avtaaraam purnatvam tu Puranaadi eva gantavam, sarva-avtaar asaadhaaranatvam upasangharati …lokam yuge yuge pratiyuge mridayanti“.

Meaning: The Purnatva of Vaaraah etc avtaars are established in Purans etc, here it is established that all the avtaars are extraordinary and they loka in the loka every yuga to protect Indra.

That’s the difference. Amsha avtaars never protects Indra. They are for other purposes. It’s Only Purna avtaars that protect Indra.

The commentator explains ‘Purna avtaara’ as shad-guna purnatvam. Amsha avtaars have some of these shad-gunas mentioned in Vishnu Purana (6.5.74).

ऐश्वर्यस्य समग्रस्य धर्मस्य यशसः श्रियः।  ज्ञानवैराग्योश्चैव षण्णां भग इतीरणा।। (विष्णु पुराण ६.५.७४)

“सम्पूर्ण ऐश्वर्य, सम्पूर्ण धर्म, सम्पूर्ण यश, सम्पूर्ण ज्ञान और सम्पूर्ण वैराग्य – इन छहों का नाम ‘भग’ है”। ये सब जिसमें हों, उसे भगवान कहते हैं।

Amsha avtaars have expansion of dharma gyaana of Bhagwaan while Avtaars are dharmi gyaana itself. In simple words, Purn avtaars or swayam bhagwaan forms are Bhagwaan itself. He himself comes as Vaaraha, Mohini, Rama etc. In Amsha avtaara, he gives some of his qualities to a jeeva through expansion of dharma-bhoota gyana.

As per Madhvacharya

Detailed explanation of “Krishnastu Bhagwaan Swayam” (SB 1.3.28) is given in below link along with quotations from Gita-Bhasya of Madhava

Krishnastu bhagwaan swayam

  1. When it is said that Krishna is the amshi (the whole), and that Varâha, etc., are amsha-s, there is another problem — in the subsequent verse of the Bhâgavata, it is said: `indrArivyAkulaM lokaM mR^iDayanti yuge yuge’ — when there is trouble from enemies of Indra, “they” protect Yuga after Yuga. Here, the verb mR^iDayanti is in the plural form, and so also should the subject be. Yet, in your interpretation, we came across only Krishna for the subject.
  2. Thus, here Krishna is not an specific noun but it represents all the ‘Swayam Avtaars’ of Narayana.
  3. For mR^iDayanti (they protect) — a plural, the subject should be plural and an interpretation with the singular subject-word `kR^ishhNa’ is also not possible for this reason. It cannot be said that the referent is the plural “fragments” referred to earlier: when some subject is brought in between, for the meaning after this subject, the reference given before cannot be used. If you say that propriety rather than proximity is a concern in interpretation here, then we say that we will demonstrate propriety without sacrificing proximity, so that that argument does nothing to save your interpretation.
  4. In the previous two verses (1.3.26-27), Suta says that the number of incarnations of Sriman nArAyaNa (Hari) are  innumerable like thousands of rivulets flowing from a river & goes on to say that RishIs & devas (demigods), Manus & prajApatis are all amsAs of Lord Hari. Coincidently, some verses before to this Suta listed Balraam and Krishna as 19th and 20th incarnation of Sriman Narayan. So, any meaning should be related to context.
  5. Now the question arises as to whether, all these incarnations (rishis, manus and others) are actually “svayam bhagavAn” i.e. nArAyaNa Himself. To clarify that, sUtar is telling in the verse 1.3.28 that rishIs, anya dEvatAs (dEvAs), manus and others (above mentioned avatArams”) are not “svayam bhagavAn” ( not ” nArAyaNA Himself), but KrishNa is bhagavAn Himself. So, obviously, SUta muni wants to reiterate that rishis and others are only amsAvatArAs (ie. They are not same as nArAyaNa) and are different from Narayan’s svayam avatArams (like Ram, KrishNa).

LINK: BHAGAVAD GITA X-41

ete swa ansha kala punshah

source: http://madhwaprameyamahodadhi.blogspot.com/2014/06/krishnastu-bhagavan-svayam.html

Presenting in simple words:

  1. As per rules of grammar, singular noun follows singular verb and plural noun follows plural verb.
  2. since the verb ‘mridayanti’ here is plural (prathama pursha, bahuvachana); the subject Krishna should also be Plural noun. It is not a singular noun.
  3. So, the noun ‘Krishna’ is not singular but denotes ‘all the Purna-avtaars’ of Vishnu. It has been discussed above.
  4. If claims are made that ‘ete’ is subject here; all earlier mentioned avtaars are subject; then again you runs into grammatical error.
  5. An objector says: While doing anvaya (interpretation), one is required to consider sannidhi (proximity) and yogyatA (propriety). Even when sannidhi is not available, yogyatA is a must, and in fact,] yogyatA is a stronger consideration than sannidhi. So giving prominence to sannidhi alone is not acceptable. So say you? Let it be so. Without giving up sannidhi, we will demonstrate yogyatA. yogyatA with sannidhi is better in comparison with yogyatA without sannidhi.

Study in detail, the bhashya of Madhvacharya and Sri Raghavendra Tirth: http://www.dvaita.org/shaastra/gita/bg1041.html

Explaination using Chhatri Nyayam in Vishishtadvaita Sampradaya:

“ete” can be interpreted using CHHatri Nyayam:It is described as follows : “chatrinO gacchanti” a group of people having umbrellAs are going. Actually, not everyone in that group needs to hold an umbrella. This usage, though addresses the group as a whole, it doesn’t convey that everyone in that group has an umbrella. Thus, according to “chatri nyAyam”, eventhough the adressing be done to the whole group, as if everyone has the same characteristic (eg: holding the umbrella), still, it needn’t convey that _everyone_ in that group has that characteristic ie. the intention is to just refer to those who actually posses that characteristic (holding an umbrella), though adressing is done to the whole group as such.Lets see how “chatri nyAyam” is employed in this verse (1.3.28). All avatArams of the type Nrusimha , RAma are Poorna avatArams only, since they are taken by the same person nArAyaNa. Eventhough all the poorna avatArms ( no umbrella) seems to be grouped with that of many other avatArams (anupravesa / amsAvatAra etc; with umbrellA ) by the word “ete”, its actual import from the application of “chatri nyAyam” is that the word “ete” refers only to the amsa avatArams (with umbrella). So, the comparison of KrishNAvatAram is strictly not with _all_ the avatArams that has been listed before, but only with other amsa avatArams. The word “ete”, though addresses the whole group of avatArams that has been listed so far, the intention is to refer to only those avatArams that are amsAvatArams (with umbrella). If one fails to recognize the “chatri nyAyam ” employed, it leads him/her into a contradiction

 

The concept of Paribhasha Sutra:

Jiva Goswami has taken one-fourth of the shloka out and projected as a separate parenthetical phrase. He calls it a paribhaasa sutra, which is found in the beginning and through which entire shastra can be interpreted.

Objection: The portion he takes as paribhaasa-sutra is not in the beginning but in the middle of the shloka and in the middle of 3rd chapter of first canto.

This whole concept of paribhaasa sutra is funny. What if ‘advaitins’ take ‘TAT TVAM ASI’ as paribhaasa sutra and interprets entire Vedas on it’s basis?

Not accepting SB 1.3.23

Althogh 1.3.23 clearly says Krishna as 20th avtaara, they don’t accept it. Argument given is, “facts meant to emphasized is placed later and is of more value than previous facts“.

Do they even realize that it contradicts with the very concept of Paribhasha Sutra which is a part of verse found in beginning of the text? If second logic is accepted, Paribhasha Sutra turns of Zero Value.

Purv Mimansha 6.5.54

Bteween two contradictory expiatory injunctions, a later one is of greater force and sublates the earlier one.

REPLY:

There is no contradiction at all. The shlokas SB 1.3.23 and SB 1.3.28 are not contradictory but gives similar meanings. 1.3.23 says Krishna is avtaara of Vishnu while 1.3.28 says he is Purna avtaara of God, different from Amsha avtaars.

If you want to take only later parts as more authentic, I would go for 11th and 12th Skandha.

SB 12.12.2: Shuka says that so far I have narrated various leelas of VISHNU.

12.12.2 suta concludes as leela of vishnu

or, When Mahavishnu Says Krishna that You are my amsha:

10.79.58 mahavishnu and Krishna

For more pramans from Srimad bhagwatam:

Study: Krishna and Vishnu (In Srimad Bhagwatam)

Krishna and Vishnu (4 handed form)

Krishna and Vishnu (The husband of lakshmi)

Next, Madhvacharya talks about Black and white hairs of Vishnu incarnating as Krishna and Balarama….. that is subject matter of our next post.

Stay tuned.

Adiyen Ramanuja dasan

References:

  1. http://www.ramanuja.org/sv/bhakti/archives/apr2000/0185.html
  2. htmlhttp://www.dvaita.org/shaastra/gita/bg1041.html
  3. http://madhwaprameyamahodadhi.blogspot.com/2014/06/krishnastu-bhagavan-svayam.html
  4. Srimad Bhagwatama bhashya of Veer-Raghavacharya

Author: ramanujramprapnna

studying Ramanuj school of Vishishtadvait vedant

6 thoughts on ““Krishnastu Bhagwaan Swayam””

  1. Thank so much for this post.
    Though i couldnt understand completely the grammar part of the post.I got the essence and have trust on you that what ‘krishnastu bhagwan swayam means’.You coupd have put down the whole last question from the pdf so that person like me who is not very well known with grammar rules can get the ultimate essence of your post.If possible please append this to your post.
    Question: why was “KrishNa” selected here and said as “krishNAstu bhagavAN svayam” and
    not “rAmA is bhagavAn svayam” OR “nrusimha is bhagavAn svayam”, etc, though krishNa,
    rAma, nrusimha are all the same nArAyaNa (poorna avatArams; svayam bhagavAn; not
    amsAvatArAs) ??

    I have been mentally put under torture by my own mind,when people were quoting krishnatu bhagwan syayam as only he is original god and even Ram,Narsimha and even Vishnu are plenary but not original incarnations(krishna).This post needs to Quora so that every guy who isnt treating every avatar of narayana equally and sometimes showing naryana/vishnu/Rama inferior to krishna learns the fact.So please answer the same if asked on Quota,it would help many people like me

    Finally,i want to read Bhagvatham england translation .Please suggest me a good book comimg from srisampradya or madhvasampradaya school of thought.

    Please accept my humble obeisances.
    On namo narayanaya
    Jai sriram
    Jai srikrishna

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    1. The commentaries are in Sanskrit and not translated in English so far.

      The grammar is simple. Plural subject takes plural verb. Here ‘mridayanti’ is plural form of verb and hence subject ‘Krishna’ is also plural. That’s logic of Madhvacharya.

      Sri Vaishnavism uses ‘Chhatri-nyaay’. Krishna is mentioned as ’20th’ avtaar just before. Then is the mention of aavesh-avtaars. Then swayam-avtaars of Vishnu are differentiated from his aavesh avtaars.
      Swayam avtaar means himself comes as Ram, Krishna etc. Aavesh avtaar means he gives his shakti or swarupa to a jeevatma like Ved-Vyasa, Parashuram etc.

      The rishis there wanted to listen to especially to Krishna’s leela. They were attracted to Krishna. Bhagwatam is mainly about krishna-avtara.
      ‘Ramastu bhagwaan swayam’ comes in Padm-Puran.

      Just like Mukesh khanna got famous as Shaktimaan. If I say Shaktiman’s expressions are best of all actors. Here it means all roles played by Mukesh Khanna.

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  2. Prabhu,are krishna ,rama and vishnu equally powerful.?I mean if Krishna and adi narayana face with each other in a battle(of course they both are same won’t fight with each other but just imagine they have are fighting, iam asking this question to just know who is more powerful),then who will win.I request you to answer my question.

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      1. Prabhu,If I worship krishna,does it mean I have worshipped lord vishnu also and will I get mercy of lord vishnu and will I be called as devotee of vishnu.Whom does lord Vishnu like more ,the person worshipping his avatars like rama,krishna or who directly serves vishnu himself.Is it true reverse also,that is if I serve lord vishnu will krishna also become satisfied. Should I worship only on form my whole life or I can worship any form depending on my mood for some time and concentraticoncentrating on another form for sometime .Then will I progress in bhakti.First if I worship krishna and become 5% closer to him,and after some time if i worship vishnu or any other form of him and became 20% closer to vishnu ,then these percentages should be counted separately or I should combine them.Please answer my question prabhu.

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      2. Someone who considers one form God to be higher or lower than other is doing Bhagwat-apraadha and would never get moksham. Prahlada never knew the Narasimha form, he was just worshipping Vishnu. Bhagwan came in form of narasimha but he didn’t say that you are not my God.

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