A renown Haridasa, he is called the Suladi Dasa as he used this form of poetry to express his devotion to Hari and propagate the Madhwa way of life.
He stands next only to Purandara Dasa in the number of his compositions. Though he was born more than a hundred years after Purandara Dasa died, he accepted Purandara Dasa as his guru as he came in his dream and took him to Vyasa Kashi.
It was at Vyasa Kashi that Purandara Dasa introduced him to Veda Vyasa who inscribed the Ankita Vittala on his tongue. Since then, he went on to compose 25,000 songs and he came to be better known as Vijaya Dasa (1682-1755).
He has to his credit 525 suladis, 491 padas and 72 ugabhogas. Unfortunately, these are all the compositions of this great Haridasa which are extant today. The rest are presumed missing or lost to posterity.
He used the suladi medium to great effect. He is the author of the Pancharatna Suladi and this is rare gem in Kannada literature. He also made use of suladis to describe Raghavendra Swamy, his avatars and the Brindavana.
He has written suladis on Purandara Dasa, Vyasa Raja and Sripadaraja also. His suladi on Purandara is called Dasa Purandara. In one of the suladis, he describes the vows a person has to take before he accepts the Haridasa Deekshe.
His suladis are generally characterized by usage of Sanskrit words. Yet, the compositions are simple and easy to recite.
Some of his famous suladis include Veda Vyasa Suladi, Kapila Suladi, Vayudeva Suladi, Narasimha Suladi, Habba Suladi, Durga Suladi, Haridasa Lakshana Suladi, Parashurama suladi, Gurubhakuti Suladi, Hayagreeva Suladi, Dhanvantri Suladi, Naivedya Suladi, Stotra Suladi, Mangalacharana Suladi, Mantra
mahatmya Suladi, Apattu parihara Suladi, Tatvabhimani Suladi,
Taratamya Suladi, Srusti Prakarana Suladi, Upasana
Suladi, Atmanivedana Suladi, Vyadhiparahira suladi,
Apamrutyu parihara suladi and Theerthakshetra suladi.
Incidentally, Vijaya dasa has composed a Suladi on Narasimha as has his shishya or disciple Jagannatha Dasa of Manvi.
The Narasimha suladi of Vijaya Dasa goes like this:
“Lata Lataa Lata Lataa Latakatisi Vanajanda
Kataha Pata Pata Putadutkatadi Bichchutaliralu
Puta Putaa Putanegedu Cheeri Haaruta
Palkata Kata Kataa Kadidu Roshadinda
Bobbiriye Veera Dhwaniyinda Tanagidi
Habbi Munchooni Uri Horageddu Sutte
Ubbasa Ravigaage Abja Nadugutire
Abdhi Saputa Ukki Horachelli Barutire
Abbaravenenuta Nabhada Gooleyu Tagiye
Shabda Tumbitu Avyakruta Aakasha Pariyanta
Nibbaragalu Taru Giri Jharjharisalu
Vabbarigoshavalla Namma VijayaVithala
Ibbageyaagi Kambadinda Poramatta.”
In another suladi, he talks of seeing Raghavendra Swamy with several other Gods. This is what he says:
“Nodidhenu Guru Raghavendrara
Maadidenu Bhakutiyali Vandane
Bedidenu Kondaadi Varagala
Eedu Illade Koduva Gurugala
Nooru Parvata Varusha Bidadale
Vistaara Aradhaneyu Tolagade
Vaara Vaarake Aagutippudu
Saara Kaarunyadali Lakumee
Narayana Taa Chakra Roopadi
Saaridavara Agha Kaledu
Ivarige Keerutiya Tandippdanudina.”
Vijaya Dasa lived a long life and he had innumerable disciples (61 disciples) and the most famous among them are Gopala Dasa (Bhaganna Dasa), Panganamma Timmana Dasa or Venugopala Vittala Dasa, Mohana Dasa, Ramachandrappa (Ramachandra Vittala Dasa), Kondali Madhwacharya (Madhwesha Vittala Dasa), Sheshagiri Dasa (Hayagreeva Vittala Dasa), Modalakallu Sheshagiri Dasa (Guru Vijaya Vittala Dasa) and Kallur
Subbannacharya (Jagannatha Dasa).Some of his contemporaries are Satyabhinava Theertha, Satyapoorna Theertha and Satyabodha Theertha, all of Uttaradi Matha: Sumateendra Theertha, Upendra Theertha, Vadeendra Theertha and Vasudendra Theertha, all of Mantralaya Matha, Vyasa Tatvagnaru, Dewan Venkannapant or Dewan Venkanna of Adoni, Jagannatha Dasa of Manvi, Prasanna Venkata Dasa, Helavanakatte Giriyamma and others.