Adi Shankara  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

Adi Shankaracharya or Adi Shankara (roughly "the first Shankara"), reverentially called Bhagavatpada Acharya (the teacher at the feet of Lord), Shankara (approximately 788-820 CE) was the most famous Advaita philosopher who had a profound influence on the growth of Hinduism through his non-dualistic philosophy. He advocated the greatness and importance of the important Hindu scripture known as the Vedas (most particularly on the Upanishads, also known as Vedanta), spoke to a spirituality founded on reason and without the shackles of dogma or ritualism, and gave new life to Hinduism when it was suffering due to the increasing influence of Buddhism. He was born in Kaladi, a small village in Kerala, India. His teachers include Gaudapada and Govinda.

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