Origin & Development of Vaisnavism,
revised edition


By: Suvira Jaiswal
December 2015
Munshiram Manoharlal
Distributed by Coronet Books
ISBN: 9788121501972
255 Pages
$57.50 Hardcover


This edition is revised and enlarged to update the material and impart more dept to author's strikingly
original interpretations, especially those relating to Narayana and Vasudeva-Krsna. It questions the general
assumption that the sentiment of personal devotion of bhakti formed a basic component of pre-Aryan aboriginal
cults from which it was borrowed by later sectarian religions. The author argues that Religious consciousness
being an ideological reflex of man's real life process its structure also undergoes changes in conformity with the
changing social relations. The adoption of the principle of ahimsa and of vegetarianism in Vaisnavism is explained in its social context. It is shown how Puranic Vaisnavism evolved in the process of revitalizing brahmanism through assimilating a number of orthodox, non-conformist and tribal elements; the absorption of Mother-goddess Sri-Laksmi in the Vaisnava pantheon is a case in point. The revised edition throws fresh light on the Narsimha incarnation of Visnu and the remodelling of some Vaisnava rituals. Finally, it highlights the social role of this religion and indicates the extent of its influence in post-Maurya and Gupta times.