A divine pastime happened few hundreds year ago near the banks of Cauvery river. One sunny day few srivaishnava boys were playing on the banks of Cauvery river .
As they inherited their parents daily rituals , the boys smartly erected a small temple and installed an idol out of the Cauvery mud from the banks of the river . Each of them had some little contribution in bringing mud , pebbles , leaves , flowers etc .
As a part of the religious code as observed at their homes , they adorned themselves with the Urdhvapundra ( Tilak ) and were completely dissolved in devotion assuming it to be the real Periya Perumal Temple .
Few began chanting (glorification verses) Thirupallandu pasuram verses innocently but it was divine feeling for the crowd .
They offered Theertha prasada readily available from the banks of the river.
JagathAcharyar Swamy Ramanuja happened to pass by the banks of the river .
One curious boy noticed the smiling swamin from a long distance .
He informed the other kids and all wished to have Acharyas appreciation .
They rushed towards Acharyar and invited him to their temple .
Please come to our temple, all the boys pleaded in one voice … .
Swamy Ramanuja was overjoyed with the boys dedication. He accompanied the little boys and proceeded towards their temple constructed just now on the banks of the river .
He offered obeisances to the temple and the deities inside and humbly accepted the theertha prasada given by the boys with all reverence .
A disciple who was watching his Acharyar , humbly begged to know what was the reason for Swamy Ramanuja to offer obeisance’s and accept the theertha prasada in an inappropriate place and that too from small kids ?
Swamy Ramanuja smiled and said , My Child !! .. You must recollect the sloka in Srimad Bhagavad Gita where Lord Krishna says
yo yo yaam yaam tanum bhaktaha shraddhayaarchitumicchati |
tasya tasyaachalaam shraddhaam taameva vidadhaamyaham ||
Whichever devotee desires to faithfully worship a particular form, I fortify his faith in exactly that (form).
and as per poigai Azhwar a verse from the Mudhal Thiruvandhaadee says
thamar ugandhadhu evvuruvam avvuruvam thane thamar ugandhadhu eppEr maRRappEr – thamar ugandhu evvaNNam sindhiththu imaiyAdhu irupparE avvaNNam AzhiyAnAm
which means ……
If the devotees wish to perform service in any form , He joyfully accepts that in this world (through archa form) by accepting whatever form and name that they wish for Him….
Lord accepts whatsoever form the devotees create and offer worship .
He lovingly accepts the name the devotees lovingly call him and whatever manner in which they offer worship to him .
Swamy Ramanuja had unwavering respect for the Lordships which was intended as a play toy and respect to the children .
Any deity which is created out of sheer devotion is entitled for worship . It is big offence to look down upon them.
The disciple was enlightened with the lesson ..
Adiyen Ramanuja dasan
Pics credits : Google images