devam); Samkarshana, Pradyumna and Aniruddha then emanating each one
from its immediate predecessors. Though in each of these three primary
emanations, two qualities apiece are pre-eminently manifest; they participate
in the other four qualities also, but only in an incipient manner.
    The earliest reference to the vyuha doctrine is found by some scholars in
the Brahmasutra passage, but it may be noted that it is only in the
commentaries thereupon of Sankaracharya and Ramanuja that the tenet is
clearly mentioned. In Patanjali’s time it may have reached an early formative
stage, for that great commentator perhaps refers to it in his note on Panini’s
    The extant inscriptions prove that in the second to the first century BC and
even as late as the beginning of the first century AD the viravada doctrine was
one of the most prominent ones.
Reconciliation with Brahmanism
An event of far-reaching importance in the history of ancient Indian religions
was the adoption of this new sect into the fold of orthodox Brahmanism. The
reconciliation between the two is clearly demonstrated by the fact that
Vasudeva Krishna was successively indentified with two prominent Vedic
gods, viz. Vishnu, originally a satellite of the Sun, but recognised to be a
great god in the later Vedic period; and Narayana, probably a deified sage,
who, however, appears later as Hari and the eternal, supreme deity. That this
identification was completed before the second century be is evidenced by
the dedication of Garudadhvaja by Heliodorus to Vasudeva, the God of gods.
For Garuda was the recognised vehicle of Narayana-Vishnu, these two deities
being ultimately regarded as one.
    It is not easy to pinpoint either the reasons or the process of this
amalgamation. The initiative might have been taken by the Brahmins
themselves, as a protection against the rapidly expanding Buddhism. The
Bhagavatas, on the other hand, probably thought it politic to attach to
themselves the honour and prestige of an old and time-honoured name.
Whatever might be the reasons, it must have cost the Brahmins a bitter pang.
The memorable scene in the Mahabharata, in which Sisupala pours forth the
venom of his heart against Bhishma for honouring Krishna as the most