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Jagadguru (Sanskrit जगद्गुरु), literally meaning the Guru of the world, is a title used in Sanātana Dharma. Traditionally, it has been bestowed upon or used for ācāryas belonging to the Vedānta school (among the six traditional schools of thought in Hinduism) who have written Sanskrit commentaries on the Prasthānatrayī (literally the three sources) - the Brahma Sūtras (the original scripture of Vedānta), the Bhagavad Gītā (part of the Mahābhārata) and the principal Upaniṣads. Historically, Jagadgurus have established a lineage (Paramparā), established an institution to spread Dharma, who have been based in Varanasi, famous for being the centre of Sanskrit study and the "Capital of All Knowledge".

Origin and history of the term[edit]

जगद्गुरु is of Sanskrit origin where जगत् (jagat) means 'the entire world' and गुरु (guru) means 'spiritual master'. In the classics and scriptures, the word has been used for several Devas. In the Mahābhārata, Arjuna addresses Śrī Kṛṣṇa as the 'Supreme Master of the entire world'. The Sanskrit poet Kālidāsa uses the word जगद्गुरु for Lord Śiva in his great poem (Mahā-kāvya) titled Kumārasambhava.[1] In the Rāmacaritamānasa, the poet-saint Tulasidāsa uses the same word for Rāma.[2] His Divine Grace Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Prabhupāda uses it for Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu in his song Guru Paramparā. [3] His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedānta Svāmi Prabhupāda uses it for Lord Kṛṣṇa in his composition Markine Bhagavata-Dharma. [4]

Notable Jagadgurus[edit]


  1. ^ Kumārasambhava, Canto 6, Verse 15 and also Canto 8, verse 24.
  2. ^ Rāmacaritamānasa, Araṇya Kāṇḍa, verse 3.9.
  3. ^ Sarasvati, Bhaktisiddhanta. "Guru Parampara". Krsna Kirtana Songs. Retrieved 20 April 2016. 
  4. ^ Bhaktivedanta Swami, A.C. "Markine Bhagavata-Dharma". Krsna Kirtana Songs. Retrieved 17 April 2016. 
  5. ^ a b c d e Saraswati, Prakashanand (2007). The True History and Religion Of India: A Concise Encyclopedia of Authentic Hinduism (First ed.). New Delhi: Macmillan Publishers. ISBN 0230630650. Retrieved 28 April 2016. 
  6. ^ "Spiritual Guru Jagadguru Kripalu Maharaj passes away". Zee News. 15 November 2013. Retrieved 12 June 2015. 
  7. ^ Melton, J. Gordon (2003). The Encyclopedia of American Religions. Gale. ISBN 978-0-7876-9696-2. 
  8. ^ Singh, Khushwant (28 January 2007). "Varanasi seer’s memory is phenomenal". The Tribune. Tribune India. Retrieved 12 June 2015. 
  9. ^ "Nikhildarshan-Samanvayacharya". jkpliterature. Retrieved 31 May 2016.