Adi Shankara's Four Amnaya Peethams


Sri Adi Shankara Bhagavatpada consolidated his work by establishing in the four directions, four Mutts called Amnaya Mutts to sustain and foster the sacred tradition of Sanatana Dharma. Keeping in mind that the Mutts should serve as places of spiritual wisdom and peace for all seekers of the Truth, Sri Shankara chose spots bountiful with natural splendour and serenity. Sri Shankara chose Puri in the East and Dwaraka in the West, both being located on the shores of the sea. The Acharya also chose Badrinath in the North and Sringeri in the South for the natural aura that these places had, owing to the towering scenic mountains and at both places.

Sri Shankara assigned one Veda for each of the Mutts, signifying that each Mutt would play a significant role in taking efforts to sustain and propagate that particular Veda.Thus Rig, Yajur, Sama and Atharvana Veda were assigned to Puri, Sringeri, Dwaraka and Badrinath Mutts respectively. Sri Shankara also nominated his four chief disciples, one to each of these Mutts. He assigned Sureshwara to Sringeri, Padmapada to Dwaraka, Hastamalaka to Puri and Totaka to Badri. That all these Mutts function to this day shows the vigour of the movement started by Shankara for the propagation of Advaita Vedanta and Sanatana Dharma as a whole.

The Amnaya Peethams:

  West North  East South

NAME:

Dwaraka
Kalika Mutt

Badrikashrama
Jyotir Mutt

Jagannatha
Govardhana Mutt

Sringeri Mutt 
Sharada Peetham

DIVINITIES:

Siddheshwara
Shakti-Bhadra Kali

Narayana
Shakti-Purnagiri  

Jagannatha
(Purushottama,  Shakti-Vrsala Vimala)   

Malahanikara Linga, Varaha, Shakti-Sharada

TIRTHA:

River Gomati

River Alakananda

 Mahodadhi (Bay of Bengal)

Tungabhadra

VEDA:

Sama

Atharva

Rig

Yajur

SAMPRADAYA:

Kitavala

Nandavala

Bhogavala

Bhurivala

MAHAVAKYA:

Tattvamasi

Ayamatma Brahma

Prajnanam Brahma

Aham Brahmasmi

TITLES:

Tirtha, Ashrama

Giri, Parvata, Sagara

Aranya, Vana

All the titles, particularly, Saraswati, Puri, Bharati, Aranya, Tirtha, Giri, Ashrama

FIRST ACHARYA: Sri Padmapadacharya Sri Totakacharya Sri Hastamalakacharya Sri Sureshwaracharya