I searched a lot while trying to find answer to What was the lifestyle of Gaudapada? ; Though I couldn't find an answer worthy to post. I read couple of research papers and some pages of a very useful book "Gaudapada A study in early Advaita by Dr. T.M.P. Mahadevan. While reading The soteriology of Gaudāpada’s Māndūkya Kārikā by Colin A. Cole, I found one interesting thing (read from last line on 12th page):

A sākta work called Srī Vidyāraṇva by Vidāraṇya (circa 1100 A.D.) lists five Ācāryas between Gauḍapāda and Śankara which would place him nearer the accepted date for Śankrara

What I understood is there are total five Acharyas in Advaita tradition between Gaudapada and Adi Shankaracharya but we know about only one who is Govind Bhagvatpada according to Advaita Guru Parampara. So, I think among five, one should be Govinda Bahgvatpada. I want to know who are others? I don't know much about the sakta work called Vidyarnava; upon searching it seems should be Shri Vidyarnava Tantra but it looks huge work.

I just want to know who are those five Acharyas between Gaudapada and Adi Shankracharya.

Note: For those who don't know about Vidyaranya, he was 12th Shankracharya of Sringeri Sharda Peetha, also known as Madhavacharya and brother of Sayanacharya.

1 Answer 1


Here is what page 25 of this book says:

Sri Vidyarnava gives a detailed account of the hierarchy of Guru and disciples of Shri Shankaracharya. It is a Tantric literature belonging to the Shaktagama school. According to this book Shankaracharya was not a grand disciple of Gaudapada. In between Gaudapada and Shankara, there were five Acharyas. The names of the seven Acharyas are Gaudapada, Pavaka, Paracharya, Satyanidhi, Ramachandra, Govind, and Shankaracharya.

This book provides further names before Gaudapada and after Adi Shankaracharya.

In any case it’s unclear who Pavaka, Paracharya, Satyanidhi, and Ramachandra are. Neither Gaudapada nor Adi Shankaracharya mention them in any of their works.

  • It would be more useful if respective verse from that Tantra be extracted. Thanks
    – Pandya
    Commented Feb 18, 2019 at 17:31
  • Gaudapada and Shankaracharya are also part of Sri Vidya Sampradaya. Uttara Ananda Natha > Param Ananda Natha > Sarva Gyan Ananda Natha > Sarva Ananda Natha > Siddha Ananda Natha > Govinda Ananda Natha > Shankara Ananda Natha as per Nityotsava book (Rickross saw and told me this Guru Parampara).
    – The Destroyer
    Commented Feb 18, 2019 at 17:34
  • @TheDestroyer Yeah, the second link I provided lists the names quoted as part of a Sri Vidya Parampara. Commented Feb 18, 2019 at 17:35
  • @KeshavSrinivasan But names are different, although second link says they are from Sri Vidya Parampara.
    – The Destroyer
    Commented Feb 18, 2019 at 17:38
  • @TheDestroyer Maybe it’s different names for the same people. Commented Feb 18, 2019 at 17:39

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