By Swami Harshananda
Vijātiyabheda literally means ‘differences based on different species’.
Classification of Bheda
Bheda or difference is one of the concepts discussed in the Vedāntic treatises to establish the nature of the ultimate realities. It is generally classified into three varieties:
- Sajātīyabheda - Among number of cows, one cow is different from another cow. This is an example of sajātiyabheda or difference within the same category.
- Vijātīyabheda - A cow and a horse are different from one another because they belong to different jātis or categories. This is an example of vijātīyabheda.
- Svagatabheda - Within the body of a cow, the horns, the legs, the tail and the ears are all different from one another. This is the example for svagatabheda or internal differences.
Bheda as per Viśiṣṭādvaita Vedānta
The Viśiṣṭādvaita Vedānta of Rāmānuja does not accept the first two kinds of bhedas in Brahman but accepts the third. According to this, the jīvas and the prakṛti which is also called as cit and acit are the internal parts of īśvara or Brahman.
- The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore