One sometimes hears Mådhvas making such claims regarding the superiority of Krisna above all avatåras of Visnu in Mådhva
Vedånta. After all, U∂upi, the birthplace of the Mådhva tradition, is well known throughout India as a pilgrimage site for Krisna bhaktas. The goal of their journey is the Udupi Srî Krisna temple, whose mürti of Krisna was discovered in a lump of gopicanda by Madhvåcårya himself. Although Krisna certainly is at the center of lay Mådhva activities such as arcana and püjå, there are many references in Mådhva doctrine to the Råmåyana, both direct and indirect, that can neither be ignored nor discounted. In fact, Madhvåcårya and Hanumån are intimately connected, for they are both believed to be avatåras of Våyu, the wind God. Sîtå, the consort of Råma, is also believed to be an avatåra of the goddess Srî Laksmî who, according to Madhvåcårya, is an integral component of the manifestation of the universe itself. Thus in the present inquiry I will expose the extent of the influence of the Ramåya∫a on Mådhva Vedånta by examining a variety of portrayals of gods and quasi-humans who are integrated into Mådhva epistemology, soteriology and ontology.
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