As I discuss in this question, the Isha Upanishad has a special property that other Upanishads don't: it's part of the actual Samhitas of the Vedas, i.e. the part of the Vedas whose verses were heard directly from the gods. (It's the 40th Adyaya of the Shukla Yajur Veda.) So while other Upanishads are just philosophical teachings designed to clarify the meaning of the Vedic verses, the verses of the Isha Upanishad are of divine origin.

Now proponents of the Vedanta school of Hinduism don't generally write commentaries on the hymns of the Vedic Samhitas, but they make an exception in this case because the Isha Upanishad is still an Upanishad. The Isha Upanishad is only 18 verses long, but it has been the subject of voluminous commentary. For instance, here is a commentary by Adi Shankaracharya, a proponent of Advaita Vedanta (a philosophy where the Jivatma or individual soul is identical to Parmatma or the divine soul). And here is a commentary by Madhvacharya, proponent of Dvaita Vedanta (a philosophy where Jivatma and Paramatma are totally different). And here is even a commentary by Bhaktivedanta Prabhupada, who believes in Chaitanya Mahaprabhu's philosophy of Achintya Bheda Abheda (inconceivable unity and difference between Jivatma and Paramatma).

But my question is, what about the other major school of Vedanta, Visitadvaita Vedanta, the philosophy of the Sri Vaishnava sect of Hinduism (of which I'm a member), according to which Jivatmas are distinct parts of Parmatma but Paramatma extends beyond them? Are there any Sri Vaishnava commentaries on the Isha Upanishad available online in English?

Ramanujacharya, the figure most prominently associated with Visistadvaita, doesn't seem to have written any commentaries on the Isha Upanishad, but two other Sri Vaishnavas did. The Sri Vaishnava philosopher Vedanta Desikan wrote a commentary on it, which is there in this book and this book, but is it available online anywhere? A Sri Vaishnava Acharya named Koora Narayana also wrote a commentary on it, available online here in Sanskrit. But are there any English translations of it?

2 Answers 2


Swami Uttamur Veeraraghavacharya has written a commentary in Sanskrit by name Acharya bhasya tatparya on Sri Vedanta Desika’s Isayasya Upanishad bhasya. I am not sure whether it is available online.

There is a copy of Isavasya upanishad by Swami Vedanta Desika, translated into english by Dr. K.C. Varadachary and Dr. T.Tatachary, printed by TTD, available online for download gdurl.com/zZZt/download.

Dr N.S. Anatha Rangachar has written a book by name Principal Upanishads Vol -1 containing the sanskrit verses of the Upanishads and English translation which is mostly based on the Swami Ranga Ramanuja muni’s (16 th century) commentaries on Upanishads from Srivaishnava perspective. The Principal Upanishads Vol-1 contains Isha, Kena, Katha, prasna, Mundaka, Mandukya, Taittiriya, Mahanarayana, Svetasvatara Upanidhads. Again, not sure whether this available online, but hard copy can be purchased from Haristore. You can check here for more details for the Dr N.S.Anatha Ranchar's works and other details.

  • "There is a copy of Isavasya upanishad by Swami Vedanta Desika, translated into english and printed by TTD, available online for free download." Do you have a link? Sep 11, 2015 at 10:55
  • @Keshav - I have the copy, i can share with you. But, can you tell where i should upload and how?
    – user808
    Sep 11, 2015 at 11:23
  • You can go to drive.google.com, upload the document, click the share button, and it will generate a shareable link you can post. Or you can just email it to me (lugita15 AT gmail DOT com) and I can upload it on Google Drive and give you the link. By the way, where did you get it from? Sep 11, 2015 at 11:33
  • @Keshav - Uploaded on Google drive and added the link. You can dowload it, i suppose. Thanks
    – user808
    Sep 11, 2015 at 13:08
  • You need to change the sharing setting. Currently it's set to private, so only you can access it. You need to make it such that anyone can view it. Sep 11, 2015 at 13:28

I found this link that has a book (but it apparently costs $50!) containing commentaries on five Upanishads, including the Ishopanishad, by a Visitadvaita scholar.

Here is where I found that link from: http://www.hindudharmaforums.com/showthread.php?t=11030.

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