Acharyas

six-goswamisThe Supreme Lord personally descends out of compassion because He is more anxious to have us return home, back to Godhead, than we are to go. Because we are in ignorance, we do not know anything about the kingdom of God or how to get there. Therefore Krishna comes at intervals or sends His representative, the pure devotee acharya. An acharya is the bona fide representative of the Supreme Lord who descends in this material world to deliver the fallen souls and take them back to the spiritual abode of Lord Krishna. The acharya is considered to be a very intimate associate of Lord Krishna and is always absorbed in His transcendental pastimes. He is entrusted with the special mission of liberating people from this material world.

The Gaudiya Vaishnava tradition has many stalwart acharyas in its disciplic succession.

The Six Goswamis of Vrindavan: Rupa Gosvami, Sanatana Gosvami, Jiva Gosvami, Gopala Bhatta Gosvami, Raghunatha dasa Gosvami and Raghunatha Bhatta Gosvami, headed by Srila Rupa and Sanatana, were deputed by Lord Chaitanya to excavate the present places of pilgrimage in Vrindavana. The Gosvamis also contributed great literatures pertaining to devotional service.

Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura: He pioneered the propagation of the teachings of Lord Chaitanya in the modern times. A magistrate by profession, he was a very prolific writer and a great devotional poet. His compositions are very famous among the Gaudiya Vaishnavas.  

Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura: The spiritual master of His Divine Grace Srila Prabhupada, he is also known as the ‘simha guru’ or the ‘lion guru’ for thwarting the impersonalists and non bona fide schools of spirituality. He established Gaudiya mutt centers all over the country.

Other prominent acharyas: Sri Narottama Dasa Thakura, Sri Vishwanath Chakravarthy Thakura, Sri Baladeva Vidyabhushan, Srinivasa Acharya. All these acharyas have immensely contributed with their literary works and preaching.