Journal of Indian Philosophy 48 (1):9-21 (2020)

The sixteenth-century Marathi poet-saint Eknāth is better known for his devotional songs and allegorical drama-poems than his “philosophical” writings. These writings include commentaries on and distillations of Sanskrit texts that feature a highly localized form of Advaita, or non-dualist Vedānta. Rather than consider them vernacular translations of the classical traditions of Advaita, I propose to read Eknāth’s philosophical works as embedded in a local context of non-dualist thought that filtered into the elite world of Sanskrit knowledge-systems. I provide examples from his Marathi commentary on the Sanskrit Hastāmalaka Stotra, a brief versified teaching on Advaita Vedānta. I also look at the para-textual material bracketing the content and some of the accompanying manuscript record, in order to understand the context for circulation and transmission of this material among Eknāth’s various readers over generations. My general attempt is to understand how ideas and practices belonging to local, vernacular networks filter into elite Sanskrit systems of knowledge—that is, not just into flexible genres like purāṇa but into disciplines, like Vedānta, that are generally viewed as impervious to the world around them. From my perspective, all knowledge is local, even that articulated in such cosmopolitan languages as Sanskrit. In Eknāth’s vernacular Advaita, we find evidence for a much wider scope for the movement of ideas, one that moves not from top-down but bottom-up.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s10781-019-09407-z
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Translate to english
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 50,118
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Greater Advaita Vedānta: The Case of Niścaldās.Michael S. Allen - 2017 - International Journal of Hindu Studies 21 (3):275-297.
Untouchable Bodies of Knowledge in the Spirit Possession of Malabar.John Richardson Freeman - 2009 - Paragrana: Internationale Zeitschrift für Historische Anthropologie 18 (1).

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

The Self in Advaita Vedanta.Eliot Deutsch - 1966 - International Philosophical Quarterly 6 (March):5-21.
The Advaita Vedānta of Brahma-Siddhi.Allen Wright Thrasher - 1993 - Motilal Banarsidass Publishers.
Advaita Vedānta: A Philosophical Reconstruction.Eliot Deutsch - 1969 - Honolulu, East-West Center Press.


Added to PP index

Total views
8 ( #900,678 of 2,324,561 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
1 ( #682,670 of 2,324,561 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes