Madhwa is the
chief proponent of the Dvaita philosophy.
Duality Philosophy postulates that there are in
fact three irreducible separate entities,
1. Brahman - God
2. The Beings - Living
3. The Material World - Non-living
This is the empirical reality. There is no
reason to doubt this experience. There is no
intellectual and logical reason for unity of
Absolute. It is never an apriori axiom, as many
would have us think.
There is a clear distinction between the Creator
and the Created - between Brahman and the Jagat.
The twins that are created are the Jiva and the
Ajiva - the living and the non-living. We
differentiate between Paramatma (The ultimate
Soul) and Jeevatma (The living soul) Both the
Being and the non-being are real.
Before we go further, it is important to know
what we mean by reality. Reality is that which
exists in space and time. Thus Nirguna Brahman
is not a reality. It is only an unknowable
assumption. What we can know starts with Iswara.
So are Jiva and Jada. And who is Iswara? He is
Brahman who exists and therefore real and can be
known by Jiva. Iswara and Jiva can act on Jada
in creative process.
This is also the stand of the Western Churches
Hari is supreme Iswara. "harih paratarah" There
is none superior to Hari. Madhava do not
consider the option of a Nirguna Brahma because
it does not really define anything. The word
Hari simply means to overcome. Iswara the
Supreme Lord is the overcomer. Overcomer of
what? Overcomer of sin, decay and death. He is
the only one that can save. Thus the word Hari
could simply mean Savior.
World is real, the Jiva are many. Thus we have
three eternal entities. Iswara, Jiva and Jagat
There is substantial difference between all
these three. "tattvatah bhedah" is the one that
causes sensation and perception. If there is
homogenity and identity, one cannot
differentiate one from the other. Jeevas and
Jada are controlled by Iswara." jIvagaNA
hareranucarAh" Apart from the Tatva Bheda
between Iswara an Jeeva and Jada so also there
is a difference in essence between Jeeva. There
is gradation among the jivas. Some are superior;
some are inferior. (nIcoccabhAvam gatAh)
In this system Moksha is being in the likeness
of Iswara. Since Iswara is independent of the
Jiva is responsible for its own actions and do
not affect the condition of Iswara except
through the mercy and love of Iswara.
This philosophy of dualism is basically the same
as the concept of God in the Western churches.