Jiva Goswami (1513-1598) was the son of Shri Vallabha and nephew of Shri Sanatana, Shri Rupa, all of whom were employed in the service of the Badsha Hussein Shah. Having been rewarded richly by the Badsha for their devices, their household life was very opulent.
In his studies the young Jiva excelled in all subjects, especially Sanskrit grammar, poetry and rhetoric. When he learned that his two uncles had taken to the path of renunciation and that his father had passed away, Shri Jiva journeyed to Navadvipa in order to get the mercy of Lord Nityananda. When he arrived in Navadvipa Lord Nityanananda introduced Jiva to all the associates of Mahaprabhu including Saci-devi and Shrivasa Thakura and proceeded to take him on parikrama of Navadvipa-dhama. On the order of Nityananda, Shri Jiva went on to Varanasi to study Vedanta from Madhusudana Vacaspati, a disciple of Sarvabhauma Bhattacarya who had heard from his guru the divine explanations of Shrimad Bhagavatam that he had received from Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu. Jiva mastered the same conclusions and then set out for Vrindavana to join his uncles Shri Rupa and Shri Sanatana.
Seeing that Jiva had quickly become conversant with the conclusion of Shrimad-Bhagavatam, Shri Rupa engaged him in proof-reading his Bhakti-rasamrita-sindhu. At this time Shri Jiva compiled a commentary on Bhakti-rasamrita-sindhu called Durgama-sangamani. Shri Sanatana Goswami compiled Shri Vaishnava-tosani, a commentary on the tenth canto of Shrimad-Bhagavatam, which he gave to Shri Jiva for proof-reading. Under the order of Shri Sanatana, Shri Jiva compiled a commentary on that named Laghu Vaishnava-tosani. His writings, along with those of Shri Rupa and Shri Sanatana, Shri Gopala Bhatta, Shri Raghunatha Bhatta, Shri Raghunatha Dasa, Shri Krishna Dasa, Shri Kashishvar Pandita, and Shri Madhu Pandita, completely captivated the learned men of that time.
It was the beginning of a golden age at Vrindavana. Shri Jiva regularly brought water for Shri Rupa and Sanatana's bath. He massaged their heads with oil, cleaned their ashrama, worshiped the Deity, cooked and corrected manuscripts.
After the disappearance of Shri Rupa and Shri Sanatana Goswamis, Shri Jiva Goswami became the Gaudiya Sampradayacharya to guide all Vaishnavas in Navadwipa, Vrindavana, Jagannatha Puri. Although he was the undisputed leader, he always acted as a humble servant of all the jivas.
Shrila Jiva Gosvami composed many literatures during his lifetime, including-
- Bhakti-rasamrta-sindhu-tika (Durgama-sangamani)
- Ujjvala-nilamani-tika (Locana-rocani)
- Sat-sandharbha (Tattva-sandarbha, Bhagavata-sandarbha, Paramatma sandarbha, Krsna-sandarbha, Bhakti-sandharbha, Priti-sandarbha)
- Srimad-Bhagavata-tika (Krama-sandarbha)
- Laghu-vaisnava-tosani (Tenth Canto Bhagavatam commentary)
- Sarva-sambadina (commentary on Sat-sandarbha)
- Gopala-tapani-tika (Sri-Suhkha-bodhini)
- Gayatri-vyakhya-vivrti (A commentary on the Gayatri mantra as described in the Agni Purana, chapters 216-217)
Jiva Goswami died in 1598 CE. His samadhi (tomb) is located in the precincts of the Radha-Damodara temple in Vrindavana. According to followers of Gaudiya Vaishnavism, Jiva Goswami is considered to be the incarnation of Vilasa Manjari, an eternal maidservant of Radharani.
- Jiva Goswami (English) krishnapath.org। Retrieved : 16 April, 2016।
- Shrila Jiva Goswami (English) ISKCON BANGALORE। Retrieved : 16 April, 2016।
- ShriLA JIVA GOSWAMI (English) radhadamodarmandir.com। Retrieved : 16 April, 2016।
- Jiva Goswami – Biography (English) iskcondesiretree.com। Retrieved : 16 April, 2016।