By Swami Harshananda
Purāṇas are the most popular literature, especially among the masses. Out of the 18 major purāṇas, Bhāgavata is an important work. But, there are two Bhāgavatas extant, one dealing with the supremacy of the Devī, Śaktī or the Divine Mother, and the other with that of Viṣṇu. The former is called Devl-bhāgavata and the latter is just called Bhāgavata. However, to distinguish the latter from the former, an appellation ‘Vaiṣṇava’ is sometimes added, making it the Vaiṣṇava Bhāgavata. It is the latter that is generally classed among the 18 major purāṇas.
- The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore