CC Ādi 12.17
śuniyā pāilā ācārya santoṣa apāra
commenting on verses 13 through 17, Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Ṭhākura gives an extensive description of the descendants of Advaita Ācārya. The Caitanya-bhāgavata, Antya-khaṇḍa, chapter one, states that Acyutānanda was the eldest son of Advaita Ācārya. The Sanskrit book Advaita-carita states, “Advaita Ācārya Prabhu had three sons who were devotees of Lord Caitanya. Their names were Acyuta, Kṛṣṇa Miśra and Gopāla dāsa, and they were all born of the womb of His wife, Sītādevī. Advaita Ācārya also had three more sons, whose names were Balarāma, Svarūpa and Jagadīśa. Thus there were six sons of Advaita Ācārya.” Among the six sons, three were strict followers of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu, and of these three, Acyutānanda was the eldest.
Advaita Prabhu married in the beginning of the fifteenth century Śakābda (late fifteenth century A.D.). When Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu wanted to visit the village of Rāmakeli while going from Jagannātha Purī to Vṛndāvana during the Śakābda years 1433 and 1434 (A.D. 1511 and 1512), Acyutānanda was only five years old. The Caitanya-bhāgavata, Antya-khaṇḍa, fourth chapter, describes Acyutānanda at that time as pañca-varṣa vayasa madhura digambara, “only five years old and standing naked.” Therefore it is to be concluded that Acyutānanda was born sometime in the year 1428 (A.D. 1506). Before the birth of Acyutānanda, Advaita Prabhu’s wife, Sītādevī, came to see Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu at His birth. Thus it is not impossible that she had the other three sons by Advaita within the twenty-one years between 1407 and 1428 Śakābda (A.D. 1486 and 1507). In an unauthorized book of the name Sītādvaita-carita, published in Bengali in the unauthorized newspaper Nityānanda-dāyinī in 1792 Śakābda (A.D. 1870), it is mentioned that Acyutānanda was a class friend of Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. According to the Caitanya-bhāgavata, this statement is not at all valid. When Caitanya Mahāprabhu accepted the renounced order of sannyāsa in the year 1431 Śakābda (A.D. 1509), He came to the house of Advaita Prabhu at Śāntipura. At that time, as stated in the Caitanya-bhāgavata, Antya-khaṇḍa, chapter one, Acyutānanda was only three years old. The Caitanya-bhāgavata further states that the naked child, the son of Advaita Prabhu, immediately came and fell down at the lotus feet of Lord Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. The Lord immediately took him on His lap, although he was not very clean, having dust all over his body. Lord Caitanya said, “My dear Acyuta, Advaita Ācārya is My father, and thus we are brothers.”
Before Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu exhibited His spiritual forms during His residence at Navadvīpa, He asked Śrī Rāma Paṇḍita, Śrīvāsa Ṭhākura’s brother, to go to Śāntipura and bring back Advaita Ācārya. Acyutānanda joined his father at that time. It is said, advaitera tanaya ‘acyutānanda’ nāma/ parama-bālaka, seho kānde avirāma. Acyutānanda also joined in crying in transcendental bliss. Again, when Lord Caitanya beat Advaita Ācārya for explaining Śrīmad-Bhāgavatam from an impersonalist viewpoint opposed to the principles of bhakti-yoga, Acyutānanda was also present. Therefore all these incidents must have occurred only two or three years before Lord Caitanya accepted the sannyāsa order. As mentioned above, in the Caitanya-bhāgavata, Antya-khaṇḍa, chapter one, it is stated that Acyutānanda, the son of Advaita Ācārya, offered his obeisances to the Lord. Therefore it should be concluded that from the very beginning of his life Acyutānanda was a great devotee of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu.
There is no information that Acyutānanda ever married, but he is described as the biggest branch of the Advaita Ācārya family. From a book named Śākhā-nirṇayāmṛta it is understood that Acyutānanda was a disciple of Gadādhara Paṇḍita and that he took shelter of Lord Caitanya in Jagannātha Purī and engaged in devotional service. The Caitanya-caritāmṛta, Ādi-līlā, chapter ten, states that Acyutānanda, the son of Advaita Ācārya, lived in Jagannātha Purī, taking shelter of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu. Gadādhara Paṇḍita, in the last years of his life, also lived with Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu at Jagannātha Purī. There is no doubt, therefore, that Acyutānanda was a disciple of Paṇḍita Gadādhara. In the accounts of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu’s dancing in front of the car during the Ratha-yātrā festival, Acyutānanda’s name is to be found many times. It is stated that in the party of Advaita Ācārya from Śāntipura, Acyutānanda was dancing and others were singing. At that time the boy was only six years old. text 87 of the Gaura-gaṇoddeśa-dīpikā, compiled by Śrī Kavi-karṇapūra, describes Acyutānanda as a disciple of Gadādhara Paṇḍita and a great and dear devotee of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu. According to the opinion of some, he was an incarnation of Kārttikeya, the son of Lord Śiva, and according to others he was formerly the gopī named Acyutā. The Gaura-gaṇoddeśa-dīpikā (88) supports both these opinions. Another book, Narottama-vilāsa, compiled by Śrī Narahari dāsa, mentions Acyutānanda’s presence during the festival at Khetari. According to Śrī Narahari dāsa, during the last days of his life Acyutānanda stayed in his house at Śāntipura, but during the presence of Lord Caitanya Mahāprabhu he lived at Jagannātha Purī with Gadādhara Paṇḍita.