Jagadguru Adi Shankara: A Brief Chronology of His Life


Jagadguru Adi Shankara was a philosopher and theologian from India who consolidated the doctrine of Advaita Vedanta.

Veda was slowly losing its ground. People were disoriented and moving towards a totally unorganized and unnatural society. It was during this period that in early 8th-century C.E, Jagadguru Adi Shankara moved towards unifying and establishing the main currents of thought presently practiced in Hinduism.


Jagadguru Shankaracharya


Adi Jagadguru Shankaracharya more popularly known as Shankara traveled across the Indian subcontinent to propagate his philosophy through discourses and debates with other thinkers.


He established the importance of monastic life as sanctioned in the Upanishads and Brahma Sutra, in a time when the Mimaṃsa school established strict ritualism and ridiculed monasticism.


He is reputed to have founded four mathas “monasteries”, which helped in the historical development, revival, and spread of Advaita Vedanta of which he is known as the greatest revivalist. 


Adi Shankara is believed to be the organizer of the Dashanami monastic order and the founder of the Shanmata tradition of worship.

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He is also known as Adi Shankaracharya, Shankara Bhagavatpada, sometimes spelled as Sankaracharya, (Adi) Saṅkaracarya aṅkara Bhagavatpada ankara Bhagavatpadacarya. 

There are at least fourteen different known biographies of Jagadguru Adi Shankara life. 


Many of these are called the Sankara Vijaya while some are called Guruvijaya Sankarabhyudaya Shankaracaryacarita .
Of these, the Brhat-Sankara-Vijaya by Citsukha is the oldest hagiography but only available in excerpts, while Sankaradigvijaya by Vidyaranya and Sankaravijaya by Anandagiri are the most cited.


Here in this post we are concerned with discussing the chronological events of Jagadguru Adi Shankara Maharaj Ji. So we will concentrate on those aspects only.


The most efficient documentary evidence of Shankaracharya’s period is the carefully preserved date-wise list of all the succeeding Shankaracharyas who sat on that religious throne which was established by Adi (the original) Shankaracharya thousands of years ago, and that list goes back up to 477 BC.


Adi Shankaracharya lived only 32 years so his birth date is 477 + 32 = 509 BC.


He had established four maths. Math is a religious throne, which is used as a center for propagating Dharma, and whoever sits on that throne, holds the title of Shankaracharya.


In his last days, Jagadguru Adi Shankara lived in Kanchi Kamkoti so it is also considered as a math. Dwarka Sharda Math and Kanchi Kamkoti Math both have the complete date-wise record of all the succeeding Shankaracharyas for the last 2,500 years, but the records of Kanchi Math are more detailed.


Shankaracharya, after establishing the four maths and spreading the greatness of Sanatan Dharm, came back to South India and, for the last four to six years of his life, he lived in Kanchi Kamkoti.


Thus, Kanchi Kamkoti is also called the fifth math. Thus, according to the records of Kanchi Kamkoti Math, Jagadguru Adi Shankara was born in 2593 Kali era and left this earth planet on 2625 Kali era which comes to (3102 – 2593) 509 BC and (3102 – 2625) 477 BC.


Reference: Wikipedia.

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