Founder of ISKCON. His Divine
Grace A.C.Bhaktivedanta
Swami Prabhupada
Those who undergo severe austerities and penances not recommended in the scriptures, performing them out of pride and egoism, who are impelled by lust and attachment, who are foolish and who torture the material elements of the body as well as the Supersoul dwelling within, are to be known as demons. (Bhagavad-gita 17.5-6)
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Brahma Madhva Gaudiya Vaisnava Sampradaya

Vedic knowledge is carefully passed down from guru to disciple in spiritual lineages called sampradayas. India’s sampradayas have for centuries protected its traditions of deep spirituality. Unfortunately, when spiritual knowledge is not gained from an authorized sampradaya it lacks real spiritual benefit.

The Hare Krishna movement strictly adheres to the sampradaya system. Srila Prabhupada, the movement’s founder, was a spiritual master of the Brahma-Madhva-Gaudiya sampradaya, which begins with Lord Krishna and includes His most recent descent, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu.

The lineage is known as the Brahma sampradaya because at the beginning of creation Lord Krishna Himself enlightened Brahma, the original inquisitive soul, the first created being.

The line later becomes known as the Brahma-Madhva sampradaya because of the prominent teacher Madhva (A.D. 1238-1319).

Still later, the line becomes known as the Brahma-Madhva-Gaudiya sampradaya after the line is joined by Sri Chaitanya (1486-1534), who appeared in the region of Gauda (Bengal) and imbued the tradition with new vigor.

The members of the sampradaya up to Srila Prabhupada, the founder and spiritual preceptor of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness, are listed below.

  • 1. Lord Sri Krishna
  • 2. Lord Brahma
  • 3. Narada
  • 4. Vyasa
  • 5. Madhva
  • 6. Padmanabha (or Padmanabha Tirtha)
  • 7. Narahari (or Narahari Tirtha)
  • 8. Madhava (or Madhava Tirtha)
  • 9. Akshobhya (or Akshobhya Tirtha)
  • 10. Jaya Tirtha (Tikacharya)
  • 11. Jnana-sindhu
  • 12. Daya-nidhi
  • 13. Vidya-nidhi (Vidyadhiraja) Tirtha
  • 14. Rajendra (Rajendra Tirtha)
  • 15. Jayadharma (Jaya-dharma Tirtha or Vijayadhvaja Tirtha)
  • 16. Purushottama
  • 17. Brahmanya Tirtha
  • 18. Vyasa Tirtha
  • 19. Lakshmipati
  • 20. Madhavendra Puri
  • 21. A. Ishvara Puri
  • 21. B. Lord Nityananda (Nitai)
  • 21. C. Advaita Prabhu (Advaitacarya)
  • 22. Lord Chaitanya
  • 23. A. Rupa Goswami
  • 23. B. Svarupa Damodara Goswami
  • 23. C. Sanatana Goswami
  • 24. A. Raghunatha Dasa Goswami
  • 24. B. Jiva Goswami
  • 25. Krishnadasa Kaviraja Goswami
  • 26. Narottama Dasa Thakura
  • 27. Vishvanatha
  • 28. A. Baladeva Vidyabhushana
  • 28. B. Jagannatha Dasa Babaji
  • 29. Bhaktivinoda
  • 30. Gaurakishora
  • 31. Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati
  • 32. A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada