Hathi Raamapriya Govinda ………..THE DEVOTEE WHO PLAYED DICE WITH LORD VENKATESHWARA………..


venkaTAdri samam sthAnam brahmANDe nAsti kincana;

venkateSa samo devo na bhUto na bhaviSyati

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This sloka  taken from the Puranas  claims  …………There is no place in the entire universe that equals Venkatadri, the place where the Lord resides and there is no God, neither in the past nor in the future who equals  Lord Venkateswara.

TIRUMALA, the abode of Lord Srinivasar stands unique as an embodiment of mans eternal quest for the divine and His infinite grace. A piligrimage to the sacred Hills is a soul-stirring experience cherished by every devotee.

The puranas say that soon after Dwaparayugam ended and Kaliyugam started, Lord Krishna, decided to stay back to protect one and all and chose TIRUMALA. The appearance of the Lord would be mentioned in detail later as a piligrim’s diary . Lord Thiruvengadamudaiyan is acknowledged as the most glorious and auspicious   avatar of Lord MahaVishnu in this Kali Yuga. Even atheists and rationalists admit a sense of humility and the presence of the Lord can be felt by one and all as soon as one approaches the sanctum.

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May be , this made Kulasekhara Azhwar in his Perumal Thirumozhi to burst into the pasuram PADIYAAYI KIDANDHU UNN PAVAZHA VAAI KAANBENEY.

The piligrims who seek his darshan enter the  serpentile queue  chanting the holy name and with deep devotion wait patiently to have the LORDs darshan .  And as one joins the queue along with  several devotees chanting LORDs names

GOVINDA

GOVINDA ..

the feeling is  very special .

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Once we  understand we are reaching the temple  main door . we can  have darshan on our right side  Lord playing dice with a baba .(near the old Sreevari Sahsra Deepalankara seva stage) , This  huge models of LORD playing dice with a babaji makes one wonder what divine leela that would  this have been . 

It may be noted , among several devotees , Few hundred years ago  Bahavaji   from  Northern India an advanced  devotee of Lord Sri Ram joined a group of sants in having darshanam of LORD VENKATESHWARA in Tirumala . Incidentally the day when Bhavaji  entered temple  for darshanam was   Puratasi Saturday ( the entire month of Purattasee ( September -October ) commemorating  LORDs Appearance month .

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Bhavajee  after having LORDs darshan was  in complete bliss  . The  divine place it was and the  HARI NAAM attracted him  a lot . He could experience inner peace multifold at this place .He decided that the search for  his LORDRAM has  ended and hence decided to remain there .He  was so fascinated by the majestic appearance of the Lord that he decided to  be there permanently  having darshan of the Lord all the time.  With the devotees and  mahants support he constructed a small  Ashram (a place where the saints live near the temples) and settled  near the temple permanently .

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Bhavaji  paid his obeisances to LORD as often as possible  and  he was slowly dissolving LORD in himself  Few occasions , He used to  swoon and fall and sometimes with tears used to have darshanam of  the lord unmoved for a long time . This continued for a few weeks and months in the temple  .  The Temple authorities being ordinary onlookers could not understand the devotion of him .

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They   became suspicious about his  long waiting  and hence  reported the matter to the Temple  Chief .  With the instructions received  from the higher ups  , Bhavaji  was not allowed the next day . He was given a  strict warning  not to come to the vicinities of the temple . They demonstrated their anger  by pushing him out .  Our Bhavajee  pleaded the staff  not to separate him from his Lord Ram . But all this went to deaf ears .  A sad and dejected Bhavaji returned to his Ashram with tears .

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Bhavajee expressed his grief  to LORD  with tears praying for HIS mercy  in having HIS darshan .  Whenever he used to make an attempt to enter the temple he was mercilessly pushed out .  Bhavajee was not sure how to pass his time without having the Lord’s darshanam.He  took up a dice board and started playing the dice himself assuming that he was playing with the Lord on the other side. He  switched the roles of LORD and himself while throwing the dice  and suddenly dozed of to sleep unknowingly

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Bhavajee was in deep sleep . Suddenly  he heard a pleasant voice calling, Bhavaji!   Bhavajee ..   Please Wake up! It’s me, Your Rama!  Bhavaji opened his eyes and  was amazed  to have darisanam of  LORD  standing in front of him. He  just couldn’t believe his eyes.  He pinched himself to cross check was it a normal dream ??  Amazed   Bhavaji fell at LORDS feet  with tears . LORD lifted him and said HE was keen to play dice with him . Bhavajee  a bit shy ,  expressed joy like a small child . A  jubilant Bhavaji laid a mat on the floor and  offered an asanam to  LORD  . Was it  true ?? LORD playing dice with his devotee ….  It was something strange .

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The game begun…and  LORD lost the game by making HIS devotee win .The innocent Bhavajee was feeling so elated .LORD kept loosing many games and was feeling pleased with HIS devotees win . Our compassionate  Lord wanted to gift HIS devotee VICTORY always ….  and hence  asked Bhavaji to seek any boon   . Bhavaji politely said,   Lord ..!! I  am  the most fortunate person to have  YOUR  darisanam and also play with you  . My humble prayer to you ..Oh  LORD please grace me with an audience on daily basis as the temple staff  are  not allowing him inside . To this LORD just smiled expressing his love to Bhavaje.

hh Next day  our Bhavaji  was eagerly waiting for LORDs arrival .He was feeling a strange excitement . He literally prayed the sun to leave the horizon as  soon as possible . He was very excited  recollecting LORDs bewitching smile and the fatherly love soothing him  . Finally the wait was over.  The Temple staff closed the  huge  doors of the temple  Even our  Lord  also was keen to meet HIS devotee . Lord made his move by coming out of the  “Ananda Nilayam”  and  went to Bhavajees ashram .  Bhavajee profusely fell at LORDs feet and offered asanam   . It became a regular practice for the Lord to visit the Mutt and spend time playing dice with Bhavaji at night when the temple doors were closed. One day Lord was playing dice with Bhavaji. Bhavaji  heard some noise in the ashram .He  had to go  out to   check  what  could be that noise , but there was nothing  special . It was a gentle breeze which disturbed the utensils to fall .

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When he returned to inform  the  same to Lord,  he  found that the Lord had already left the place . Disappointed he looked down   but was surprised  to see a diamond studded necklace of the Lord lying at the board. He picked up the necklace and kept it safe thinking that the Lord might have forgotten it and he would return when He comes back to play next time. The next morning  the Chief Priest attending LORD  noticed a missing necklace which he promptly reported to the Temple Authorities. The Temple Authority were worried about the theft of Lord’s necklace.  The search for the necklace began  All the employees were called up on and inquired about the missing necklace. The  Chief Priest  informed the management about  Bhavaji   and  raised suspicion over him. The Temple Authorities ordered to summon  Bhavaji for enquiry.

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Bhavaji  as usual was awaiting for Lord’s arrival to play the game of dice.  Sadly that day LORD did not join him . but he  could heard someone  calling his name . By the time he reached , the soldiers got in and started searching all over the place. Bhavaji was surprised to see them searching  the ashram all over. He   understood from them about the missing necklace . Bhavaji immediately  got the missing  necklace he held it safely to return the Lord when he visits again.  He innocently  submitted  to the guards… Was  this the necklace you were looking for?

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The soldiers  without any concession arrest Bhavaji for his theft . Bhavaji pleads  his innocence  to the security staff  , but it goes to deaf ears  Bhavajee expresses LORDS compassion and mercy over him .He tells them about the DICE game played with LORD daily and that particular day he saw LORD has forgotten the necklace and he was preparing to return the same the next time LORD comes .  This innocent  explanation  make all of them laugh and   fun of him .

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The next morning Bhavaji is reprimanded  in the courtyard of the Emperor Sri Krishnadevaraya . Sri Krishnadevaraya  listens  to  Bhavaji’s explanation and  feels  it would be unjust to punish him without sufficient proof and proper investigation. He therefore, decides  to put Bhavaji on test. Sri Krishnadevaraya  informs the devotee  Bhavaji that he will be given an opportunity to prove his innocence  provided  he succeeds in consuming the entire heaps of sugarcane kept in his jail cell  by the next day else he will be punished severely..

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Bhavaji  surrenders to the will of LORD .  Without any choice  he accepts  the Emperor’s decision.   In the prison cell , tons of sugarcane heaps   are dumped before him and the  cell doors are locked .  Bhavaje sits in a corner looking at the heaps of sugarcane .With tears he submits to LORD for his mercy .Our all compassionate LORD  never fails to rescue HIS devotee .

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A little later,  he finds a giant Elephant appearing from no where in the cell and by the wake of the dawn  all the heaps of sugarcane dumped there for Bhavaji  is  consumed by the divine elephant .   When  Bhavajee  saw the entire heaps of sugarcane being  finished, he realizes  that his  Lord Ram has arrived for his rescue and immediately  with tears  cries  Oh  Ram…! Oh Ram..! My Ram…! You have come up for my rescue. How lucky am I? The Elephant blesses  Bhavaji  and disappears  …

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On hearing the Elephant’s  noise , the guards  are suprised to see both the sugarcane and the elephant have disappeared . The Emperor Sri Krishnadevaraya  understands the devotion of the saint after being briefed by his soldiers  and  relieves  him of all charges and appoints  Bhavaji as the Chief Priest of the temple of Tirumala.  

Since this  Baba Bhavaji’s beloved Lord “Sri Ram” had personally come to  his rescue  in the form of a Hathi (an Elephant) he  is affectionately called as  Hathiram Baba.

 

 

 

As the Chief Priest  of the Temple, Bhavaji served the Lord for many years. He later entered into a Jeeva Samadhi. His  last years were spent near Sri  Venu Gopala Swamy Temple on the way to Papavinasam on the hills of Tirumala.

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A Samadhi of Hathiram Baba had been constructed there and daily pooja is being performed even today. People visiting  Sri Venu Gopala Swamy Temple pay their homage to this great devotee of Lord Venkateswara. The Hathiram Baba Mutt had been built on the top of southern side of the temple in his remembrance. LORD announces to the world that HIS devotee is always special  and always gives him the place over his Thirumudi  .

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Even one archanai thirunaamam   and Govinda namam    has

Hathi Raamapriya Govinda ……..…………………..

All glories to Hathiraam bhavaji …

Jai Jai Jai Sriman Narayana

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JagathAcharyar kataksham and Moksham to devotees


Once Lord Ranganathar  declared that all the riches of the Kingdom of Heaven as well as of earth were placed at Swamy Ramanuja’ disposal.

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Lord Srinivasa  also re confirmed this grant by His  divine  words .  And to prove that this was not mere flattery, it is written in our poorvacharyas works  that  one incident happened when JagathAcharyar  Swamy Ramanuja was in  Tirumala  .

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During those  few months stay , a milkmaid by name Tumbaiyur Kondi  used to  supply   milk  and curds to the deities of Swamy   Ramanuja in his ashram . When he was  about to take  leave  from  Tirupati, the woman appeared and presented her bill for payment.  Swamy Ramanuja  advised  Kidambi‐Acchan to give her   prasadam and settle her bill   in the Mutt . She was pleased with Acharyar’s  words . She proceeded to the Mutt and had her Prasadam . She  went to Swamy Ramanuja  and prostrated to him and submitted to him that she had a favour to ask.

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 She said, “Holy sire, I desire not payment in coins for my  milk and curds, but grant me Moksha instead!”  Swamy Ramanuja  replied , Mother !! that power I  do not possess ! Only  Lord Srinivasa alone can grant your prayer,

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Then !!  Swamy Kindly give me a written assurance that for the curds and milk supplied  this  woman  let her be given  Moksha !

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 Swamy Ramanuja, over‐come by her faith, gave her the written deed  . She forthwith ascended the Sacred Mount, but  had hardly reached the summit,

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the Lord Himself met her on the way, and receiving the permit gave her Moksha on the spot.

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Another similar  incident happened  during revered Swami Nampillais days .  Those were the days when Swami Nampillai was managing the affairs of srivaishnavas at Srirangam . Many disciples , scholars used to come to the Ashram for  Acharayar’s advise .  Next to the Ashram there was  a vacant space and another house which was owned by an old lady a nice devotee .

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This  vacant space adjoining the Ashram could cater the additional guests arriving  frequently . Swami Nampillai informed his disciples to request the owner of the land to donate the same for a noble service . The request was placed before the old woman but ended up in ambiguity . Swami Nampillai then asked his disciples to call the old woman .

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The old woman  prostrated the Acharyar and said , Swamin !! I am fortunate to posseess  this vacant land at Srirangam because of my elders  and would not part it as long as  I am   alive . However as a faithful follower she could accept for accommodating the devotees under a small request . Swami Nampillai  allowed her to speak .

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The old woman continued , Acharyar kindly arrange to grant me an equal piece of land at  Srivaikuntam  .  Swamy Nampillai replied , Mother ! I shall submit my prayer for the same . Lord will grace you for sure .

Unsatisfied with the Seer’s words she said , Swamin , I am an old illiterate woman and wish to have an written assurance instead of an oral assurance.

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Swamy Nampillai happily agreed .   He got the deed drafted and  made his disciple  recite  before the old woman  which stated that she would be reaching the presence of Lordships on  a particular date and time and will be given the required space in the heaven honouring the deed  which was attested by Swamy Nampillai himself  .

The old lady with tears prostrated Acharyar and happily donated the land .

Few days later she passed away peacefully on the date and time as per the deed  and reached Sri vaikuntam  .

Adiyen Ramanuja dasan

 Pics Credits :  Sriman Sree Krishna

Swami Koorathazhwan Aathma gunas


The compassionate hearts of the saints deplore the fate of the men who are turned away from LORD. Such compassion was once expressed in the most tender heart of the greatest srivaishnava saint Sri Koorathazhwan

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 . He renounced his  entire wealth and took asylum under the lotus feet of Swamy Ramanuja.  Kuresa lived by alms because he had given away all his wealth at Kuram a  village near Kancheepuram  and had come to Srirangam to live with  Swamy Ramanuja. He helped Swamy Ramanuja in writing Sri Bashya.

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He accompanied him  to Kashmir, got the manuscript of the Bodhayanavritti, retained it in his fabulous memory. Swamy  Ramanuja dictated his commentary Sri Bashya which was written down by Kuresa. It was Kuresa who along with Mahapurna went to  the tyrant king Krimanta Chola Palace to safeguard Sri Vaishnava darsanam. He blinded himself, unwilling to yield to the fanatic Chola King’s dictates.

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Elders advocate a Vaishnava has to practice  the eight atma gunas which take him to godhead quickly .

The gunas include  Mercy, forbearance, kindness, shedding of ego, not to be proud of wealth and observance of patience.  

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Among these another  duty  of the Sri Vaisnavas, is  feeding the poor and helping all the Lord’s  creations in all the directions.

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 A true Vaisnava should have a tender heart and  feel the sufferings of the needy people and the suffering of all creatures as his own suffering.

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He should try to redress their grievances and difficulties face  by the utmost possible help. This great quality has been strongly advocated by our Poorvacharyas.

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  Koorathazhwan practiced all the above with  humility . There are many divine pastimes in his journey to godhead which inspires any human being . Few among them have been shared in several discourses .

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One day Koorathazhwan was walking along the bunds of river cauvery. He  suddenly heard a distress cry of a frog which was taken as a prey by a snake.  The little frog was in the jaws of the snake  croaking  most piteously in death agony .

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On hearing this sound  Koorathazhwan fell down and was telling others how can I act on the call of the frog to save its life. Such was the tender heart of Koorathazhwan.

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On another  day Koorathazhwan had his morning bath at the river cauvery. As he was returning he saw a lady  struggling to put the water pot on her head.

Even though Koorathazhwan had his bath at not knowing to which caste the lady belongs he promptly  went and helped her to put the waterpot on her head.

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Orthodox men would not like to go near persons of other caste and help them as they have to again take a bath, and carryout certain samskaras.

For Koorathazhwan showering of mercy  was  superior to the other activities.

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Once Kuresa  walked into a plantain groove  to take plantain leaves for feeding the  Prasada to the assembled devotees . He went with his disciple into the garden. The  plantain leaves were cut from the tree and water was oozing out from the edges of the plantain tree.

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Koorathazhvan  could not bear  this scene .He   swooned  and fainted . He regained his consciousness only after some time when his disciple attempted . The puzzled disciple  asked the reason for such an expression of pain.

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Kurattazhwan replied  My child !! I  could not bear to see the crying of the plantain tree while cutting the leaves. From these incidents, we have to appreciate the natural and deep tenderness which Koorathazhwan had towards others, whether it was men or animal or a tree..

Kooresa’s resignation to Lord’s will was so full and unqualified that he had no will of his own even in the ordinary concerns of his household . One day his wife Andal remonstrated with him for having taken no thought about the weddings of their sons Sri Bhattar and Sri RamaPillai who were eligible for Gruhathashram.

Kuresa  replied , Oh ! Is that so !  Fine then …..  Adiyen shall submit to the Lord ….

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Kooresa  stood before the LORD and was in a deep thought consulting his will . Lord asked Kuresa what was he contemplating about .

Kooresa begged  for his mercy .

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Lord replied ..

OK ! Kooresa …

 This affair is  now my own ..I shall see the boys are properly matched ..

The very next day some gentry brought the good news of the prospective brides for his sons .

That was Swamy Kuresa who submitted everything to the divine will ….

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Moliyaikkatakkum perumpukalan vancamukkurumpam

Kuliyaikkatakkum nam Koorathazhwan carankutiyapin

Paliyaikkatattum Iramanucan pukalpatialla

Valiyaikkatattal enakkini yatum varuttamanre.

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Adiyen Ramanuja dasan

Photos credits :  Sriman Shreekrishna and advanced devotees

“Thirumazhisai AzhwAr ” incarnation of Sri. Sudarshana Chakra (the divine discus of Lord SrimanNarayana)


Thirumazhisai is a holy place located equidistant to Kancheepuram , Mahabalipuram and Mylapur in the present  chengelpet district ( Tamilnadu) . This place is very famous for  Lord Jagganatha Perumal temple .  The holy place  has  cool streams  fruit and flower grooves yielding abundant fruits.  The  blossoming flowers all through makes it  a  perfect place for a  nature  lover .

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Several seers , sages , nomadaic saints , bhikshukas relax and perform penance at  this place for eternal peace .

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In such an wonderful place , Thirumazhisai Azhwar appeared  much earlier than the advent of Kaliyuga .

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Azhwar lived for almost 300 years glorifying the Lordships .

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Thirumazhisai Azhwar was a junior contemporary of the foremost Azhwars Pogai , Pey and Bhudath Azhwar  who laid a solid foundation for vishistadvaita long long ago .

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Azhwar was brought up by his foster parents at Thirumazhisai . It is believed Azhwar left them at a very young age  and practiced Ashtanga Yoga .

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With the main aim of seeking absolute truth  he performed severe austerities and penances . He studied and practiced  all religious ideas  existed during those days  Jainism , Buddhism , Carvaka etc one by one until he got disillusioned with each of them . Slowly he came into the fold of saivism through a siddar and  started practicing their faith .  He was given a name Sivavakyar .

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However his search to the absolute truth was not finished . It so happened  by divine will he happened to see the effulgence of  Pey Azhwar  at Kanchipuram.

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Peyazhwar was maintaining a garden and  Siva Vakyar used to pass that way. Keen to know the secrets of the divine knowledge , both used to discuss about the faith they followed and wanted to conclude  about the ultimate truth . Peyazhwar decided to practically demonstrate the absolute truth to his friend .

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One day Peyazhwar took a weak rope with knots and a pot with holes .He drew water from the well through this pot  and poured it to the  plants that he planted upside down.

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Siva Vakyar  saw this  strange act and was surprised to see PeyAzhwar’s behaviour  . Peyazhwar asked him why  was he disturbed  . Thirumazhisai  replied   Holy Sire ! I am surprised with your strange act!  being so learned  ,  How will the purpose of watering the plants serve in this method , as the plant is planted upside down and the pot that contained  holes will water the plants?

Peyazhwar  was glad  that he had started pondering over the truth   .Peyazwar told him that the rope was the example for his Athma which is searching through different faiths  to find the Absolute truth ,  but  has not succeeded in its search for the truth and still going on searching wasting precious time .

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  Peyazhwar further explained ,

My dear young man ,

Our ancestors had explained in the following verse“ Thirumaal is like the root of the plant and is  the only Paramporul…

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From the root only , the  leaves, branches, flowers and fruits appear . Similarly all the demigods  took forms only from the root and so they might wither away at some time or other. Hence it is poor understanding  to think that the other parts of the plant are superior to the root, meaning without the root the plant cannot survive.

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 “Persons engaged in the worship of demigods are not  clear , although such worship is indirectly offered to Me.” For example, when water is poured  on the leaves and branches of a tree instead  on the root, he does so without sufficient knowledge or without observing regulative principles. The process of watering a tree is to pour water on the root.

Similarly, the process of rendering service to different parts of the body is to supply food to the stomach. The demigods are, so to speak, different directors in the government of the Supreme Lord. One has to follow the laws made by the government only , not by the others . Similarly, everyone is to offer his worship to the Supreme Lord only. That will automatically satisfy the different  denigods who are working under the  the Lord.

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Peyazwar’s explanation put Siva Vakyar in deep thought. He realized that he was still searching for the true knowledge , but couldn’t find it. He requested Peyazhwar to accept him as his disciple.  Peyazhwar  named  him Bhaktisaara . He started following vaishnavism and serving Peyazhwar  for more lessons  .

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Later he took leave of Peyazhwar and went on divya desa yathra. After visiting few divya desams he went  back to Thiruvekka ( Kancheepuram) and stayed there. Kanikannan  a devotee , requested  Bhaktisarar  to accept him as his disciple. Azhwar accepted him as his disciple.

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 It so happened  at Thiruvekka in his ashram an old lady used to come and clean his place, and perform small service to him. One day she prayed him that being old she felt that she may not be able to serve him longer and regretted for joining this pious service after becoming old.

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Azhwar was touched with her devotion and sincerity and blessed her regain her youth .

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One day the king who ruled over Kanchi happened to see this lady who was so beautiful after Azhwars blessings , and instantly fell in love with her. He married her and took her to his palace. As years rolled by the king was becoming old, but his wife was as young as she was when he got her married.

He asked her what was the secret and she  revealed about Azhwar’s blessings..

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.She suggested the King to ask KaNaikaNNan to request Azhwar to the palace and pray for the same. . The king sent for KaNIkaNNan and told him to summon  Azhwar and compose a verse in his praise and to restore his youth. KaNikaNNan told him that Azhwar would not compose verse praising mortals, but only in praise of  Lordships..

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 He orders  them  to leave the kingdom immediately. KaNikaNNan informs  Azhwar all that had happened.  Azhwar decided to leave the kingdom with his disciple and prays  Lord  to join along with them folding His couch ( AravaNai)

கணிகண்ணன் போகின்றான் காமரு பூங்கச்சி
மணிவண்ணா நீ கிடக்க வேண்டா -துணிவுடைய
செந்நாப் புலவனும் போகின்றேன் நீயுன் உன்றன்
பைந்நாகப் பாய் சுருட்டிக்கொள்.

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Lo presto! What a surprise! The Lord obeyed his true devotee’s order, He got up and followed his devotees out of the city, folding His snake-bed and sticking it under arm.

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The next moment the whole city plunged into darkness and ill omens occurred. The king got frightened and called his ministers for quick remedy. They told him that he had committed a big blunder by expelling a true devotee of the Lord and so no other alternative, but to go and ask for his pardon and beseech him to come back.

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The king along with his courtiers reached the place where Azhwar and KaNikaNNan were staying for the night. He fell at their feet and begged them to return to the city. Azhwar again requested the Lord to return to his abode with His snake-bed and the Lord also was happy to return.

aqFrom then onwards the Lord got the name Sonna VaNNAm Seytha Perumal and in Sanskrit Yathokthakari. 

This divine incident had been glorified by Arunagirinatar and Kumaragurupanar both devotees of Paramasivan and Skandar in their works  .

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The place they stayed for the night got the name Oriravu Irukkai and at present is known as Orikkai where a Mani Mandapam is erected.

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A special feature of Thirumazhisai Azhwar at the Jagannatha Perumal temple in Kancheepuram is that he gives darshan  with a third eye.

Thirumazhisai Azhwar  later  moved to Thiru Kudanthai ( Kumbakonam ) and glorified the Lord there .

jai2Thirumazhisai Azhwar’s contribution to the Nalayira Divya Prabhandham includes over 200 verses (Naanmugan Thiruvanthaathi and Thiruchandha Viruththam) of praise. 

 

It is construed , Azhwar expresses after thoroughly convincing himself about the futility of all the other faiths of his first hand experience and affirms LORD  SRIMAN NARAYANA is the supreme and absolute reality .

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The second composition “Thiruchandha Viruththam” has 120 pasurams which is included in the first thousand of the DivyaPrabhandam .

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The composition is so charming that the chanter is tempted to swoon himself to the lilting chants coming out naturally in the divine composition . The rhythm goes like tana tana tana tana tana tana Tanana… almost reminding the gallop of an horse .

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This prabhandam is recited in Srirangam during the Ashwa vahanam festival when Nammperumal rides the Horse .

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Azhwar  expresses in his Prabhandam , Creation or Life emanated through creatures and vegetation around , on all four sides everywhere . This creation is rampant quickly spreading continuous and  is powerful . The divine fragnant LORD the Universal Lord created Brahma . Brahma in turn created Rudra  . 

wp-1480341508099.jpegI the humble devotee of the Universal Lord submit these  in my prabhanda Naanmugam Thiruvandhaadhi . In his Prabhanda , Azhwar builds up by stages the total helplessness of the jivatmas and affirms that only LORD should shower his mercy and grace the helpless soul every stage for his upliftment and reach Godhead .

Makhayam makare mase     Chakramsam bhargavodbhavam

Mahisara puradhisam     bhakthisara maham bhaje

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Azhwar Thiru adigale sharanam
Sonna VaNNam Seytha PerumaL ThiruvadikaLe SaraNam!

Pics Courtesy :

Google images and pictures uploaded by several advanced devotees in social media

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Adiyen Ramanuja dasan

 

The Foremost Azhwars


 The term “Azhwar“ refers to the saintly souls who had  immersed  themselves in the exclusive devotion  to  Lord  Sriman Narayana  in  unconditional surrender.  The advanced  saints,  were the supreme devotees of Lord  propagating  Sri Vaishnavism among the masses through their poetical compositions glorified as  Divya Prabhandams   highlighting the beautiful effulgent form, auspicious attributes and divine deeds of the Supreme Lord in His various incarnations based on their personal mystic experiences. 

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They lived as  human beings and burst out bhakti laden great works for the  sake of humanity.  The direct result of the Lord’s divine grace  on Azhwars  made their outpourings  special and therefore  called ‘ Divyam’. It is  because of this that the works of Azhwars  are  called ‘ Divya Prabandham’  and are 4000  poems (pAsurams). 

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The Divya Prabhandams of the Azhwars are, therefore, held in as great veneration and reverence as the Vedas in Sanskrit. All the Azhwars held the view that Lord  Sriman Narayana is the Supreme Personality of Godhead  and  one’s  only  goal of life  was to attain Him. And, the path that each one of these Azhwars advocated was  chanting the Divine Name of the Lord!  which  is  the easiest path to  attain the lotus feet of  Lord. 

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     Of the twelve Azhwars , the first three

Poigai Azhwar,

Bhoodhatazhwar

and

Pey Azhwar

were believed to be of mystic birth dating back to  Dwaapara Era.

 

The fourth, Thirumazhisai Azhwar was said to have been brought up by a  couple who had the good luck to have his darshan in a  forest  .

Kulashekara Azhwar was a Chera king. Periazhwar, Thondaradippodi Azhwar  and Madhurakavi Azhwar  were born into Brahmin families.

Nammazhwar was born in a farmer’s home and Thiruppannazhwar belonged to the Pana community.

The only female  among them was Godha (Andal)  well known for  “Thiruppaavai”  even to a common man and  celebrated  as an incarnation of Mother Earth (Bhoodevi).  Thirumangai Azhwar, the youngest of the Azhwars was a chieftain of a Chola king.

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The first three AzhvArs – Poigai AzvhAr, Bhudhath AzvhAr and Pey Azhvar  were  “ayOnijAs” – “ones who were not born from a womb”.

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They appeared on water-flowers  at  three different water sources.

Poigai AzhvAr manifested on a lotus flower at Kancheepuram  Lord  YatthOkthakAri perumaL temple tank  on  the  ” sravanam” star during the month of “aippasi”  (November ) .

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The second Azhwar was Bhudhath AzhvAr who appeared on a nIlOthphala (kurukkaththi flower in tamil) near  the seaside at thiru-k-kadal-mallai (present day Mahabalipuram)  on the day subsequent to Poigai Azhvar (month of Aippasi, Avittam star ). 

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The third Azhwar “Pey Azhvar”  appeared on a sengazhuneer flower in a well in thiru-mayilai (present day Mylapore,  the temple of Lord  Adikesava perumal  on the day after Bhudath Azhvar appeared (aippasi month, sathayam star).

All the three Azhwars were blessed by the Lord with supreme knowledge, and as a result, they lived a life focused on divinity, worshipping the Supreme Lord at different temples, and living a  life of ascetics.  

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To them the entire cosmos , all sentient  and the insentient entities in it were alive and vibrating  with the underlying divinity of Lord represented  by HIS body and HE being the inner controller of  the soul .

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Azhwars point out very clearly in their outpourings the most important attribute of Lord is HIS immense compassion represented by HIS divine consort Sri: the divine mother forever residing in HIS heart and most easily accessible and who helps in the ultimate redemption of the embodied souls .

  Since the appearance of such great souls is invariably tied to a reason of divine intent, the three Azhvars had to meet to fulfill the purpose of their appearance, to wit, give the world the esoteric truths  in a manner accessible to  common man  .

The stage was set at Thirukovilur and the divine plan was already about to reveal . And   Lord Sriman Narayana achieved  this by making the Azhvars meet and become the harbingers in the effort towards the composition of the holy  Dravida Vedas.

The Lord  arranged a divine plan and  made each of them go to the town  Thirukovilur  which   is  located 75 kms from Cuddalore and about 200 kms from Chennai.

                        The rain clouds had overcast the sky and cover of darkness spread all around in the holy town of Thirukovalur . The torrential rain began  pouring  generously .  It was as if the sky will tear open to give its opulence .

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Proceeding  the temple streets ,  Poigai Azhwar  found out a small  front  passage ( dehali or rayzhi , thinnai  in tamil )   in front of Mrikanda  Ashrams hut  ( the present Thirukovalur  temple sanctum sanctorum )  which was fit for one person to lie down.

  Thanking Lord for his mercy , Poigai Azhwar   moved in and  occupied the space to lie down .  Meanwhile , Bhoodath Azhwar  coincidently arrived there looking for a shelter.

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Poigai Azhvar welcomed him and said , Holy Sire ! Please come !!  “we have enough space for one to be supine, two to sit ,…  ….

please  come in”……..

Both the Azhwars were now seated , and were indulging in bhagavad guna anubhavam (recounting the innumerable auspicious qualities of the Lord) . 

  Meanwhile  pEy Azhvar  also came at the same time to the same Ashrama. The two Azhvars already present in that little room said,  Swamin !! “in this place, one can lie down, two can sit, and three can stand …. 

please come in”. PEy AzvhAr joined them, and the three Azhvars continued their joy filled discussion of the Lord’s auspicious qualities and  divyaanubhutee which was one of the most auspicious moment to be remembered in the history of Thirukovalur. 

Lord pleased with the divine outcome now decided to be amongst HIS favourite devotees .

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The darkness became denser and inside the small room they were not able to see each other. In the  thunders and  lightning that flashed across, the trio could see a  fourth person  exquisitely charming  entering the room  and they felt as if  they were overpowered with a sublime, divine feeling.

The trio could immediately realize that the fourth person was none other than Lord  Sriman Narayana Himself huddling among them.  Poigai Azhwar , wishing to witness the charming divine effulgence of the Supreme Lord  again and again, instantly   lit a spiritual lamp to the Lord of the lords and the outpourings  

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vaiyam thagaliyA, vArkadlE neyyAga
veyyakkadirOn viLakkAga
sudarAzhiyAn adikkE soottinEn son mAlai
Idar neenghugavE enRu

which means “using the earth as the physical lamp structure, the sea of ether as the ghee for the flame, and the lit flame being verily the Sun himself!.”

 thus   the first Azhwar composed hundred  verses glorifying the Lordships …. now glorified as “Mudhal thiruvandhAdhi (first poem of the type andhAdi, meaning the last word becomes the progenitor of the thought for the following verse) which is among the Naalayiram Divya Prabhandam …………….

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 Bhudaththu Azhvar, in turn offered a lamp using his yogic powers too, yet  in a little different  fashion

 – “anbE thagaliyA, ArvamE neyyAga 
inburugu sindhai idu thiriyA
naNpurugi GnAna chudar viLakku EtrinEn
Gnana thamizh purindha nAn 

using his immense love for the Lord as the lamp structure, and his longing for union with the Lord as the energy engendering the flame. He composed a  beautiful set of 100 divine  verses known as “iraNdaam thiruvandhAdhi” (second poem of the type andhAdhi)….

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The two sacred  lamps of spiritual love, lit by Poigai Azhvar and Bhudhath Azhvar, allowed  all the three Azvhars to  experience the Lord in  opulence  proximity. That ambrosia  filled experience inspired the third , Pey  AzhvAr to  glorify the Supreme Lord instantaneously …

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“thiru-k-kaNdEn, pon mEni kaNdEn .

thigazhum aruKKan aNi niramum kaNdEn..

seRukkiLarum ponnAzhi kaNdEn

purisangam kai-k-kaNdEn……..

en Azhi vaNNan pAl inRu”


meaning, “I had the darshan  the divine consort of the Lord – Maha Lakshmi I  had the darshan of  the divine body of the Lord ,  the beautiful complexion of the Lord and the auspicious discus (chakra) verily the remover of obstacles that prevent us reaching the Lord, and the beautiful  white, divine conch in the hands of the Lord”.

This becomes  the first verse of ” Munraam  Thiruvandhadhi (third poem of the type andhadi), which is a set of 100 verses too  counted among the Naalayiram Divya Prabhandam . This uplifting divine experience bound them into a state of togetherness. They traveled across various parts of  India spreading the  divine message of the Lord for attaining HIS abode and  remaining in that bliss  through there divine pasurams   (The  three thiruvandhadhis).

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The one hundredth verse in turn hooks up to the first verse forming a lovely garland of verses maintaining the eternal thread of continuity .

To all the Azhwars LORD was a living presence experienced in the totality of HIS being and manifestation in HIS myriad creation . 

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HE lived in them and they lived in HIM  ..

Video Credits : Sri Sunder rajan Parthasarathy

Pics : Google images uploaded by several advanced devotees

Adiyen Ramanuja dasan

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‘Sri Alwarnath’ the ‘lord of the alwars’ temple at Puri


t is believed that those who cannot worship Lord Jagannath during his stay in the sick chamber can get the blessings of Lord Alarnathjee if they visit this temple. During this period the temple servitors offered holy rice porridge, known as ‘Kheer’ ( Akkaraadisil ) in local language, to the lord. During the present anavasara period of every year thousands of devotees visit this temple to get the blessings of Lord Alarnath and to taste the mahaprasad ( famous holy ‘Kheer’).

kazhiyur varadan's blog

Swamy Ramanujar  during his yatra visited the holy shrine of LORD JAGANNATHAR  at Puri dhaam located some 28 kms south of Puri, known as Brahmagiri. It is said that during Satya Yuga, Brahma performed great tapas  seeking blessings of  Maha Vishnu, and pleased with the aradhanai instructed Brahma to construct a temple . This place came to be known as Brahmagiri.

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It is said that Swamy Ramanujar visited the temple during his Orissa visit.  Swamy   was delighted to  have darshanam of chaturbhuja ( four armed) Lord  Sri Maha Vishnu, with conch, discus, mace and lotus flower. It is also believed  by the locals that he glorified  the deity  as ‘Sri Alwarnath’ or the ‘lord of the alwars’ giving the message of Sri Vaishnava Sampradaya. The place which housed Lord  Alwarnath hence also came to be known as Alwarpur. And today the words have been shortened with  passing time, the temple known as…

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Swamy Koorathalvan and Lord Azhagar at Thirumalirumcholai,


If you try to love God, you’ll gradually realize how much he loves you.

kazhiyur varadan's blog

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Swamy Koorathalvan was staying at Thirumalirumcholai  during his exile from Swamy Ramanuja   Swamy was  carrying out pushpa kainkaryam ( Flower service )  for  Lordships  every day.  During  december month ( Margazhi maasam)  azhwar after reciting the 5th pasuram of Thiruppavai and  offering the garland , he  was honoured with  sathari  . Koorathazhwan was  sad  for some reason . As he sat outside his house, a young well built man emerged and asked him what was that making him sad .

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He  assured whatsover the  problem, he had come to solve the same  . Despite repeated such assurances, Koorathazhwan, insisted that there was no way his problem could be solved. At this polite reply , the  handsome man got   a bit  surprised  and asked him  Did he really know who he was ? Swamy  Koorathalwan replied with calmness,

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Swamin ! ”Adiyen  know you  very well. You are the Lord…

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Thirumangai Azhwar divine pastime …. ……………………………………. ……………………………………. Kaayaa maram …. ( never to dry and remain green ) UUraa KiNaRu…. ( The well that got dried) Thola Vazakku (never ending legal issues)


 Thirumangai Azhwar, the last Azhwar was   affectionately  called as Kaliyan .
He was the valiant army chief of the then Chola King.
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For his valor the king gifted him with a small territory to rule over. Hence, he was known as Thirumangai Mannan .
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He was attracted to an apsara  Kumudavalli , daughter of a physician and expressed his desire to marry her.
Kumudavalli who appeared on  a divine plan  to this earth  to transform this valiant king to a  devotee , laid the condition that he should  serve  one thousand  vaishnavas every day  by offering Prasadam for one year.
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Thirumangai Mannan fulfilled her condition and continued to do so even after his marriage as he got habituated in this wonderful kainkaryam of feeding  the vaishnavas.
In due course, his wealth diminished and as…….
Lord Krishna says in Bhagavad Gita,
when HE decides to bless HIS devotee,
HE takes away wealth and enacted a divya leela.
 
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Due to his love for vaishnavas , our Azhwar resorted to stealing and plundering wealth from the rich and  egoistic  men   but  used the wealth for feeding Vaishnavas and renovating temples.
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One day ,  Tirumangai Mannan comes to know through his friends that a newly wedded couple bedecked with precious  jewellery  were  passing through a forest in a palanquin and if they could plunder their wealth, they could continue with their cause of serving  vaishnavas forever.
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 Overjoyed , Thirumangai Mannan along with his four friends  rush to the  place in the midnight ,  galloping  fast on his horse, who he calls as Aadalmaa.
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He  way lays the divine couple who are resting  near a mandapam at “Thirumanankollai” and plunders their wealth. This precious booty is carefully put  over a cloth and  Kaliyan ties it .
Not being satisfied with the loot, he  advances towards them and tries to remove the Thirumetti of  ( Goddess) Thayar with all his might but  is unsuccessful.
Something draws him towards them for a second look . However  he manages and when he tries to lift the loot, he is unable to do so. He  suspects  the bridegroom for having put some charm on the loot  .  He threatens the handsome prince ( Lord)  Perumal who is disguised as the bridegroom with a sword to disclose the secret which is not allowing him to lift the loot .
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Perumal  smiles at him .
He advises him to purify himself by having a dip at the  Kavery tributary  and return so that he can impart the secret to him.
Thirumangai mannan  politely obeys the advise .
He returns to  Perumal.
Lord  gives him the most sacred mantram, Thirumantram .
The moment Perumal whispers the sacred Ashtakshari Thirumantram , wisdom dawns on Kaliyan and he surrenders at the Lotus feet of the Divya Dampadhigal.
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Thirumangai Azwar had  initiated  lot of services to  our LORD at Srirangam. The hundred pillar mandapam for the yearly festival adhyayana uthsavam was his contribution .

He also  built the north and south gopurams at Kulasekaran thiruveedhi            ( streets ) the fourth compound wall ( Mathil suvar) which is called Maharlokam .

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This compound wall’s inner praharam is called “Aalinaadan veethi” that was the name of the place ruled by Azwar.

There is a big Garudazwar sannathi in this praharam.

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The entrance is called Karthikai Vaasal to remember the birth star of our  Azwar .

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 The Thirunadai malikai that joins the Chandra Pushkarani and Velli Azakiyan vasal was  also his contribution .

On total he  had completed eight major construction works in Srirangam.

The big question to the devotees  was where from he got this money for these construction work?”

1111It is told by elders that once Azhwar  sent his disciples to find out where from they could get money for carrying out this  huge work listed above  in the temple .

One of the disciples   understood  the task his master had  for them . 

He politely came  out and told 

……Master  I am told  that  there is  a golden  Buddha statue at Nagapattinam near Kanyakumari ..

 If  we could  somehow  possess  it,  we  would get enough money  for the construction work by selling  the same .

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On further discussing about the whereabouts , they came to know  the statue was installed on top of the Vimanam and  any disturbance of the statue would damage the Vimanam .

Hence they had to find out a smarter  way to lift  it without damaging the vimanam.

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To understand the exact shape of the statue  they had to find out the sculptor who  was assigned  that work .

Azhwar  with positive note  , sent his disciples to find out where the sculptor lived for more details  and decided to take his team to the place where the sculptor lived   .  

He  went in person with his disciples and stayed exactly opposite to the sculptor’s residence to gain his attention .

 Casually speaking to the sculptor  , He  revealed he was on a pilgrimage  and  was just waiting for the arrival of a ship to continue his yathra to Nagapattinam.

Thus he was able to gain his audience .

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One day he wanted to draw the attention of the sculptor .

He  raised his  voice and said  ,

Am  shocked  !!!  How  and really how  could  the golden Buddha statue be stolen with such carelessness when the sculptor did a wonderful job in making it and installing the same with perfection?

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There was a murmur in the room .

 The sculptor who heard this was perplexed . 

He  believed the words  he heard and  started cursing the helper who worked with him during the construction of the vimanam  as he  was the only one who knew the secret of making it and installing it over there .

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Thirumangai Azwar  read the sculptors mood .

He asked the sculptor for his nervousness  and pretended that he was concerned for his labor .

He asked him to reveal  the helper’s whereabouts  so that he would go and search for him and punish him for his misdeed.

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The sculptor innocently pleaded that  that he did not know his where about but was scared to meet the soldiers  .

  Gaining his attention further , Azhwar spoke to him pleasingly and requested him to tell him about the ( Vimana Makuta suthram) construction secret.

He assured him that he would find the sculptor and recover the statue from him which was explained . Assessing  the situation and taking leave he moved near the shores .

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The same day a ship arrived . Azhwar boarded the ship  along with his disciples. Azhwar went to the Buddha Vihar with one of his disciples. Awaiting for the right time  they planned the next move . As he had already taken vital  clues from the sculptor  Azhwar managed to  remove the statue with ease .

 The golden  statue was glittering in the moonlight.  Azhwar  had a doubt ,  Buddha who renounced his princely home and kingdom would never wish to see himself in this  golden statue. And may be that was the reason the divine play is enacted …

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Azhwar pleased with the success  decides that it will be better to travel alone  up to srirangam with the golden statue .

He advises his disciple to leave and would follow him soon .

Azhwar thus  walks  back to Srirangam.  As  he  approaches the holy place  Thirukkannangudi  near Nagapattinam   it gets  dark.

Feeling tired  he takes rest under  big tamarind tree.

He finds the field around the tree is  excavated  .

With no hesitation he buries the golden statue in the field  and commands the tree,  that even if he happens to  fall asleep, the tree must  be awake and take care of the gold  statue that has been buried .

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 The  next morning the tamarind tree obediently  sheds it leaves upon him  and wakes  him up .

Azhwar pleased with the tree  blesses the tree as URangaa puLI

(It is believed that the leaves of the tree never closed after this divine  incident.)

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As the dawn broke the  farmer arrives to water the fields .

Azhwar  a bit  confused , stops the farmer  by saying that the field belongs to him  warns him to move out of  the field .

The farmer a bit amused explains that  for generations the land belonged to his family. With confusion he gets the Elders of the village to prove the same  and object  Azhwar claims. 

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The Elders demand  proof  from Azhwar about his claims   . Azhwar instantaneously submits  that the document is at Srirangam and the same will be made available  in a day  for which the elders agree .

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Azhwar just wanted to snatch an opportunity to leave the place with the treasure that he had kept buried. 

It is said  due to this incident , at this place the law suits keeps on dragging.  Hence the name  Thola Vazakku. (means never ending)

Azhwar quickly proceeded to Srirangam .

Enroute he  looks for some refreshment . Feeling thirsty and  looking at a  woman drawing water from a well, he  requests to share some water to quench his thirst  .

The woman refuses to give water .

She replies  …

How can I trust you  as I just saw  you claim the land and who knows you may also claim this  well also as  your  property.

 

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Azhwar , unhappy with her behavior  leaves the place  .

His  unhappiness indirectly cursed that the bore well would become dry and water would never flow from underneath. 

Thus the  well was called UUraa KiNaRu and always remained dry since then.

 Tired ,  Azhwar proceeds  inside the temple of Thirukannangudi .

As he is  exhausted  , he  relaxes  under a Makiza tree.

The Lordships are  now very concerned for Azhwar  .

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Lord  comes as as a traveler in disguise  and gives him food and water.

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Azhwar  who is terribly tired accepts the prasadam in  dazed condition .

He gains some energy and looks around to see that person but disappointed  as no one is around .

He blesses  the Makiza tree.

Thus the name of the tree becomes Kaayaa maram, never to dry and always to remain green and since then the tree is green .

 Completely refreshed now , Azhwar waits for the sun to set .

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He leaves  to the field and takes  out the gold kept buried in the field  and  proceeds his journey to Srirangam.

On his way the all compassionate  Lord comes in disguise as a  traveler .

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Azhwar impressed with his bewitching smile understands it was LORD himself  who had come to feed him.

Lord graces  Azhwar with his darshanam with His Sangu- Chakram  as desired by  him

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Thirumangai Azhwar  spent his last days at Thirukurrungudi as per the command of  Lord Sri Ranganatha  and attained  salvation .

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Adiyen Ramanuja dasan

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Pics credits : Srikrishna akhilesh , google images, Lotus videos

 

” DHANUSHADHAAM AND LORD RAMA”


         It is believed  Paramashivan instructed  Vishwakarma  for making  a bow . The bow was   gifted to  King Janaka   . This bow  was safely kept which  was  too  big and   needed almost  300 people to lift,  and a cart with several wheels  was used to push this cart . 

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ENTRANCE GATE TO SIVADHANUSHAA

King Janaka was the ruler of the kingdom of Videha whose  capital  was Mithila.  One day, while a field was being ploughed in the presence of the king, he found a female child in the deep furrow dug by the plough. Janaka and his wife Sunayana were overjoyed by this discovery and adopted the little baby girl as their own.

Birth of Sita from yajna bhoomi, Sitamarhi

 

The child was named Sita, meaning ‘Furrow’ in Sanskrit. Thus, Sita is  glorified to be the daughter of Bhumi Devi (Mother Earth) since she was born or found in the earth.

photo of Sita's birth

Sita grew up to be a girl of unparalleled beauty and charm and possessed the greatest of womanly virtues. When Sita became of marriageable age, the king decided to have a Swayamvara which included a contest. The king  announced that whosoever could wield the bow and string it, could marry Sita.

one-third piece of Shivadhanush broken by Ram at Dhanusha,Nepal
THE REMAINS OF SIVADHANUSHA

 On the other side  , after the protection of Vishwamitra’s sacred ritual, on their way back to Ayodhya,  Lord Rama and Lakshmana traveled to Mithila. Accompanied by Vishwamitra, they attended Sita’s Swayamvara.  Lord Rama successfully broke Shiva’s bow as he picked it up and was examining the tautness of its bowstring. The young prince’s strength and courage perplexed all the attendees. And with the breaking of the bow, Janaka proposed Sita to  Lord Rama in marriage. On the approval of Sage Vishwamitra, Janaka sent his messengers to Ayodhya to convey the message to Dasharatha. He gladly accepted the marriage proposal of Rama and Sita . Lord Rama had performed the brave valor of lifting the mighty Siva danusha in his  divine pastime at this holy place  Dhanushaa  a place which  is located  about 30 kms from Janakpur near Bihar Nepal border . This place is  also  popularly called as  ” Dhanush Sagar”.

Sita Temple, Punouda
TEMPLE FOR MOTHER SITA AT SITAMAHI , BIHAR

As per the locals belief, it is said that when Lord Rama lifted the bow, it broke into 3 pieces -one piece went to heaven,  one  at Madhubani and the third piece fell at this place. This broken bow  was submerged under a pipul tree during the course  .

Sita's birth place,Punouda
TEMPLE FOR MOTHER SITA AT SITAMAHI , BIHAR

Over a period of time , this bow has started growing   in size  since  ages .Presently it measures about 12 metres.

dhanush details
DISPLAY BOARD AT THE TEMPLE ENTRANCE

 The villagers  here  said that whenever there is a famine in this village , the locals  gather at this holy  place and pour milk near the  pipul  tree. Few gallons of milk would be absorbed  in no time and when the milk starts overflowing,  it is believed the area would be blessed with rains  .

dhanush mandir entrance
DHANUSHADHAAM ENTRANCE

The area is  well protected by  a covered shed and  maintained  by the locals . Once in 3 years during a ritual ,  the locals  measure the size of the Dhanush,  and they find it to increase in size towards east by 3 cms or so. This is one the most important places in Nepal not to be missed ..

Adiyen Ramanuja dasan

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Lord Parthasarathy darisanam at Aranmula in Kerala .


It is said that Arjuna built this Aranmula temple at Nilackal near to Sabarimalai, and the deity was brought here in a raft made of six pieces of bamboo to this site, and hence the name Aranmula (six pieces of bamboo). Legend has it that Arjuna built this temple, to expiate for the sin of having killed Karna on the battlefield, against the dharma of killing an unarmed enemy. It is also believed that Lord Vishnu (here) revealed the knowledge of creation to Brahma, from whom the Madhu kaitapa demons stole the Vedas.

kazhiyur varadan's blog

Among the 108 SriVaishnava Divya desam ,  Aranmula (Tiruvaaranvilai) is located in Kerala  state   (counted in  Malai nadu divyadesams near 6 kms from chenganoor ) Aranmula is a beautiful village located further inland from Chengannur, (9 km west) on the Ernakulam  Quilon railroad.

1234  The temple is located on the left bank of the Pampa river, it is from here that the sacred jewels of Ayyappan are taken in procession to Sabarimalai each year. Aranmula is also known for the watersports   festival  involving a spectacular procession of snake boats.

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Among the Lord Krishna temples in Kerala, the most important ones are at Guruvayur, Trichambaram, Tiruvarppu, Ambalappuzha and Aranmula.

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Aranmula is one of the  great five ancient shrines in the Chengannur area of Kerala, connected with the  epic Mahabharatam. Legend has it that the Pandava princes, after crowning Pariksit left on a pilgrimage of India, and reached…

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