Bhed?bheda Ved?nta is a subschool of Ved?nta, which teaches that the individual self (j?v?tman) is both different and not different from the ultimate reality known as Brahman.
The characteristic position of all the different Bhed?bheda Ved?nta schools is that the individual self (j?v?tman) is both different and not different from the ultimate reality known as Brahman. Each thinker within the Bhed?bheda Ved?nta tradition has their own particular understanding of the precise meanings of the philosophical terms "difference" and "non-difference". Bhed?bheda Ved?ntic ideas can be traced to some of the very oldest Ved?ntic texts, including quite possibly B?dar?ya?a's Brahma S?tra (c. 4th century CE).
Bhed?bheda predates the positions of two other major schools of Ved?nta. The Advaita (Non-dual) Ved?nta that claims that the individual self is completely identical to Brahman, and the Dvaita (Dualist) Ved?nta (13th century) that teaches complete difference between the individual self and Brahman.
Bhed?bheda ideas had an enormous influence on the devotional (bhakti) schools of India's medieval period. Among medieval Bhed?bheda thinkers are: