Unity in Diversity – Shri Chaitanya’s Achintya-Bhedabheda, the Universal Principle of Harmony

By Radhamadhav Das, PhD

The author is presently working on the second edition, which will be available in print. The second edition is available as Ebook.

Download the pdf here.


Our search for harmony and an all-encompassing truth asks for universal unity. At the same time, individuality, freedom of thought and respect for the cosmic diversity are values that celebrate diversity. A very essential human question is therefore: How can unity and diversity exist together harmoniously? The answer is found in a proper understanding of the phenomenon of unity. Unity means that different living beings and environments are united in a common cause and purpose.

Such unity of everything in existence is best explained by the principle of (materially inconceivable) simultaneous oneness and difference, in Sanskrit called Achintya-Bhedabheda. This principle was first described by Shri Chaitanya, the founder of the Chaitanya Vedanta school of thought.

This book presents this universal principle of harmony and shows how it applies to all fields of action such as science, philosophy and religion. Despite conforming to academic standards, it is written in simple language and offers practical guidance how to participate in the cosmic unity in diversity.


“The philosophy of acintya-bhedabheda, inconceivable simultaneous oneness and difference, is the true essence of Vedic truth. Its practice elevates one to the perfection of divine love for the Absolute Truth, Sri Krishna.”

–Srila Bhaktivinode Thakura, eminent Caitanya-Vaishnava author and Acarya.

“Unity in Diversity is the most promising paradigm to resolve the conceptual problems faced by modern science; it is the pinnacle of philosophy and it expresses the essence of religion.”

– Dr. T. D. Singh (B. S. Damodar Swami), Director, Bhaktivedanta Institute.

“This book is a great contribution to the presentation of the universal philosophy of Sri Caitanya and will be well received by common readers as well as academics.”

– Srila B. B. Bodhayan Swami, President-Acarya of the Gopinath Gaudiya Math.

“The thesis Unity in Diversity forms a most comprehensive exposition of Sri Caitanya’s philosophy of acintya-bhedabheda. (…) The harmonizing potency of this philosophy deserves special attention because it is able to reveal the inner unity of the cosmic diversity.”

– Prof. D. N. Tiwari, Head of Philosophy and Religion, Banaras Hindu University.