An Introduction to Kerala Divyadesams. (Malai Nadu Divyadesams)


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Swami Nammazhvar  the most celebrated   amongst all the Azhwars  quotes in one of  his  paasuram  6.9.5 ( 3435)

“vinmeediruppAi, malaimElnirppAi, kadal sErppAi

manmeeduyalvAi evattrul engum maraindhuraivAi

enmeedhiyandra puravandaththAi enadAvi

vunmeedhAdi vurukkAttAdhE olippAyO?”

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The above  pasuram reveals that LORD existence at

paravatam .. vin meediruppAi .. (staying in the sky/heavens)..

malaimEl nirppAi ….to archai (staying in divya desams like Tirumala , thirumAlirunchOlai , Sholinghur , Bhadri , Saalagramam …

(Standing on hills/mountains) kadal sErppAi refers to vyuha moorthi, (Residing in sea)

…..man meedhuyalvAi ….refers to vibhavams (HE …came down  due to causeless mercy as Lord  Rama and Krishna) (Walking  on earth)….

evattrul engum maraindhu vuraivAi ……refers to antaryami who stays inside each one of us , being invisible to all ,  beyond comprehension and beyond one’s understanding and  stay in the entire vast universe and protect  us.

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Merciful “Lord Sriman Narayana” appears in  five different forms  as

para,

vyuha,

vibhava, 

archai     and

antaryAmi .

 Lord Sriman Narayanan appears in the above five forms. 

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 LORD  in response to the ardent prayers of revered saints and  various advanced  devotees appeared to them and conceded  their request of continuing to grace with  darshan in the same form for the benefit of the future generations .  The deities  were duly consecrated with various hymns and temples were constructed by various generous kings.

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Archai Murthies are the Lordships who grace us inside the  temples and the temples  which have been glorified by revered   Azhwars  through their emotional out pours  are called Divya Prabhanda pasurams.

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 Azhwars   were  the incarnations of  of Lord Sriman Narayana’s divine weapons .(“Azhwar” in Tamil means ‘one who is immersed’. Since these advanced  saints were always immersed in the Lord and His qualities, they were called Azhwars )  And the places which was glorified by Azhwars  are earmarked as Divya desams .   Out of the  12 azhwars, 4 Azhwars appeared towards the end of Dwapara yuga and  

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Eight Azhwars appeared during  Kali yuga.

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The Srivaishnava  Divyadesams are a group of 108  SriVaishnava  Temples. Among the  108 Divyadesams, 105 temples are located in India and one  in Nepal. The remaining  two temples are in the celestial world glorified as  Sri Vaikuntam  and ThiruParamapadham.

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These temples  are very old and have been  renovated by pious kings and advanced  devotees  periodically .

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These 106 temples are classified into six  zones-

  • Chola Nadu divya desam –  40 temples  situated in Central Tamilnadu around Trichy,Kumbakonam,Mayavaram, Srikazhi,Nagapatinam
  • Pandya Nadu divya desams 18 temples situated in southern part of Tamilnadu around Madurai,Tirunelveli, Ramnathapuram, Sivakasi..

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  • Nadu nadu divya desams – 2 temples in the northern part of Tamilnadu located near Vizhupuram and Cuddalore
  • Thondai nadu divya desams -22 temples in the northern part of Tamilnadu located in and around  Chennai(4),Kanchipuram (15), Arakonam(3)

 

 

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  • Malai nadu divya desams 13 temples out of which 2 are in Southern tip of tamilnadu and the rest 11 temples are in Kerala scattered around Trivandrum,Chenganoor, Ernakulam, Thrissur
  • Vada nadu divya desams – 11 temples out of which 2 are in Andhra Pradesh, 1 in Gujarat, 4 in Uttar Pradesh, 3 in Uttaranchal and 1 in Muktinath.

MALAI NADU DIVYA DESAMS

Malai nadu divya desams are  classified due to its location   mostly located in Kerala that  are scattered from Central ,  North to South Kerala. 

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Devotees keen to have darshan can start  from Thrissur which is in the North Kerala , come downwards to visit Chenganoor, Ernakulam  and go further south to visit Thiruvananthapuram, Thiruvataaru,Thiruvanparisaram else  start from South  and complete the yatra  in the reverse direction.

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Kerala as we  believe is God’s own country aptly deserves the name.  The pristine nature with plenty of water resources with  lush greenery and calm surroundings add beauty to the divya desams in this serene location .

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Kerala experiences tropical climate and as nature is still preserved, it enjoys beautiful weather  with frequent rains.  

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Hence, the houses and temples are constructed in such a way that the conical roofs do not retain the rain water. Another interesting feature  of the temples are the beautiful murals made of teak wood . 

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A brief note about the nearest town /city from where these temples can be accessed is given below:-

North Kerala:– Thiruvithuvakodu near  Pattambi  and Thirunaavai   near Kuttipuram can be accessed along with Guruvayur. 

1) Thiruvithuvacode:– popularly known as “Anjhu murthy kovil” on Shoranur-Kallikatai rail route. Bus from Pattambi to Kootupatha ( app one hour bus drive) and from there to take an auto to go to temple.

2) Thirunaavai :– Shoranur -Kuttipuram bus route.  Bus from Guruvayoor to Kuttipuram and from there another bus to Thirunaavai  (app. travel time 2.5 hours by bus)

The travel time from Thiruvithuvakodu to Thirunaavai is about one hour by car. Guruvayur is about 40 minutes drive from Thirunaavai and as the temple closes at 1 P.M., we can  visit this temple a bit late

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Central Kerala:– Thirumoozhikalam,Thirukatkarai near Ernakulam; Aranmula, Thiruvanvandoor, Thirukodithanam, Thirupuliyur, Thiruchenkundroor (popularly known as Pancha Pandava prathista temples) and Thiruvallavaazh can be accessed from Chenganoor. 

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These temples are located in different directions from Chenganoor and can be covered within 7 hours(to start very early)

3) Thirumoozhikalam:– In Alwaye-Ernakulam bus route- 7 kms from Kaladi road and 12 kms from Alwaye. Take bus from Ernakulam to Alwaye-Change bus to Edapally at Alwaye .  From Edapally take an auto to go to the temple. Total travel time app. 1.5 hours

4) Thirukaatkarai:- Take bus from Alwaye-Thirukatkarai and from there auto to go to temple which is about 3 kms away.(travel time app 1 hour)

Ernakulam-Chenganoor travel time is app. 2.5 hours.  Six divya desams can be accessed from Chenganoor

5) Thiruchitraaru(Dharman temple)- 2 kms from Chenganoor station

6) Thirupuliyur (Bhiman temple)- 6 kms west of Chenganoor/ 16 kms from Aaranmula

7) Thiruvaranvilai/Aaranmula(Arjunan temple)-10 kms from Chenganoor

8) Thiruvanvandoor (Nakulan temple) -4 kms north of Chenganoor

9) Thirukodithanam(Sahadevan temple) – 2 miles east of Chenganachery  on Thiruvalla-Kottayam road

10) Thiruvallavaazh- one hour by bus from Chenganoor

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 South Kerala:- Thiruvananthapuram and the 2 malai nadu temples in Tamilandu namely, Thiruvataaru and Thiruvanparisaaram can be visited together.

11) Thiruvananthapuram:– 1 km from Trivandrum railway station

 

 

12) Thiruvaataru:- Trivandrum to Nagercoil bus , change at Thakalai / by car 40 kms short cut

13) Thiruvanparisaaram– 4 kms from Nagercoil/ 40 kms from Thirukurungudi

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Most of the Kerala divyadesam temples have  divine connection with the two great epics-

Srimad Ramayanam and Mahabharatam .

The divyadesams around Chenganoor are popularly known by the  great heroes  of Pandavas as they were responsible for constructing them.

 For example  ..

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Imayavarappan temple at Thiruchenkundroor is known as “Dharmar/Yudhistira temple, Mayappiran temple at Kuttanadu Tirupuliyur is known as “Bhiman temple”,

Parthasarathy temple at Aaranmula as Arjunan temple,

Pambanaippan temple at Tiruvanvandoor as Nakulan temple,

Athputha Narayanan temple at Thirukodithanam as Sahadeva temple

Likewise, there are temples related to Ramayanam too.

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(There may be a slight  variation in the distances as mentioned in the write up which was shared by the  locals .)

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The four temples around Ernakulam popularly known as “Nalambalam” meaning Naalu(four) ambalam(temples) are known by the name of Srirama at Thriprayar,, Lakshmana at Thirumoozhikalam, Bharata at Iranjalkudi and Shatruguna at Payammal.

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 It is usual practice in kerala  for devotees to recite entire Srimad Ramayanam during Karkataka maasam and do “Naalambalam”(circumbulation of four temples) – most  prevalent practice in Kerala where parikrama around all the four temples dedicated to  Lord Sriramar at Thriprayar, Bharatan at Iranjalakudi (Koodalmanikyam temple)  Lakshmanar at Thirumoozhikalam (Sri sukitnathar), and Shatruguna at Payyammal in a single day starting from Thriprayar  Lord Ramar temple is accessed .

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The temple at Thiruvaataru is glorified as the place associated with Brahma Samhita. As told by a devotee inside the temple ,

 

 the Acharyar of Gaudiya sampradaya His holiness Sri Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu is believed to have  accessed one part of this Brahma Samhita which forms the basis of Gaudiya Vaishnavism.

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Utsavam  ( Festivals) is performed in almost all the temples for about 10 days and  during that time, Srimad Bhagavatam would be recited .  

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The inaugural day is known as “Kodi Etram” and the final day is known as “Aaratu”Only during sevali (Sri veli) which is performed after bhog is offered to Lord, when the processional diety goes around the temple to supervise the food offerings to the guarding deities, musical instruments are played except in one divya desam .

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In Thiruvananthapuram, Thirukatkarai excellent stay facilities are available.  In Tirupuliyur, pilgrims amenities are provided taking into consideration the influx of pilgrims.  

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 All the temples in Kerala open by 4 A.M. and close by 11 A.M. and in the evenings, the temples are opened for a shorter duration from about 4.30 p.m. to 7.30 p.m.

 

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The timings are strictly followed without any deviation.  Also, out of the 13 temples, in 11 temples Lord gives darshan as as  Sri Vishnu murthy adorning  Sankhu, Chakram, Gada,Padmam in standing posture.  Only in Thiruvananthapuram and Thiruvaataru,  Lord gives darshan in reclining posture.  Another common feature is there is no separate sannidhi for Thayar in all these temples except Thirunaavai.  

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Kerala is located on a hilly location and hence the travel time taken is more compared to the plains.  Also, there are state run buses available which are quite cheap but the only drawback is the name boards will be in   Malayalam and we may not be able to understand !!!!

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In our first trip during 2001 we traveled from North to South and covered these divya desams in five days as we commuted through public transport.

A recap of the journey done is reproduced in the below url..

http://www.srivaishnavam.com/divyadesam108/malai_trip.htm

However, in   our recent trip ,  our merciful Lord  blessed with  a very comfortable trip.  We could cover temples starting from South towards north from

Thiruvanparisaaram-Thiruvaataru-Thiruvananthapuram-Chenganoor divya desams-Thirukodithanam-Thirukatkarai-Thirumoozhikalam-Thiruvithuvadoe-Thirunaavai-Guruvayoor…

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  By Acharyar’s blessings we decided to club  Pandya nadu and  Malai nadu  divya desams darshan hiring a vehicle  from Srirangam..  

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A distance of about 900 kms to and from Srirangam covering around  32 temples within a span of 4.5 days  could be possible  by sheer mercy of  Acharyar  and the Divyadesam Perumals ..

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 Prostrating at the lotus feet of asmath acharyar,H.G.Sri Sri  Mudaliandan Swami and JagathaAcharyar   Swamy Ramanujar, adiyen wishes to share the recent travel details of the  18 Pandya nadu divya desams, 13 Malai nadu divya desams,Guruvayur(abhimana sthalam) commemorating the Sahasrabhdhi celebrations of Swamy Ramanujar  within a span of five days(4.5 days precisely) .

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We commenced our yatra on the auspicious  Kaisika Ekadasi with blessings of our Acharyar and Elders -10 th Dec 2016 with prayers to our Thirumaligai  Perumal.  

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Seeking blessings from Asmath Acharyar HIS HOLINESS SRI SRI MUDALIAANDAN SWAMY before commencing the journey

After obtaining Asmatha acharyar’s anugraham at Mylapore, we proceeded to srirangam  by car . We reached midnight and were fortunate to have darshan of Lord Namperumal adorned with 365 silk clothes .( Kaisika Ekadashi special)  Namperumal blessed us with theertha,prasadam . 

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We carried our  yatra deities (Sri Sita ,Lakshmana, Hanumath sametha Sri Ramachandran, Swamy Ramanujar )along  with Lord Guruvayurappan-the aradhana deity of our advanced  devotee friend to all the temples and puja was performed to them along with the divyadesam Perumals.

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Our yatra commenced from Srirangam at 5 A.M on Dwadasi day immediately  . . We were joined by a  advance devotee couple Smt &  Sri Thiruvengada ramanuja dasan who resides  in Srirangam serving  Acharyar, His holiness Sri Sri Rangaramanuja Jeeyar.

 

 

THE DIVINE  JOURNEY BEGINS …..

The approximate distance from Srirangam to visit Pandya nadu and Malai nadu divya desams and drop at Srirangam is about 900 kms. …..

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We opted to visit these divya desams by   engaging a nice devotee   cab driver  sri .Ramu-(a devotee  from Kumbakonam who is very familiar with the location of the temples and the priests ).

 He can be contacted on 94866 56052.

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Our route details ……………

(1) Srirangam      -Thirumeyyam ( 85 kms via Pudukkottai)

(2)  Thirumeyyam-Thirugoshtiyur    – (40 kms)

(3)Thirugoshtiyur-Thirupullani ( 130 kms via Manamadurai, Paramakudi,Ramnad);

(4) Thirupullani-Thirumoghur ( 165 kms via Ramnad, Madurai)

(5) Thirumoghur-azhagar kovil tirumaliruncholai(15 kms)

(6)Thirumaliruncholai- Thirukoodal  (15 kms)

(7)Thirukoodal-Thiruthankaal(75 kms via Virudhunagar)

(8) Thiruthankaal-Srivilliputtur(25 kms via Sivakasi),

(9) Srivilliputtur-Varaguna-mangai (Alwar Tirunagari) (140 kms via Tirunelveli),

(10) nava tirupati divya desams in and around Azhwar Tirunagari(total 35 kms); (11)srivaikuntam(navatirupati)-Vaanamamalai(70 kms via Tirunelveli/Palayankotai);

(12) Vaanamamalai-Tirukurunkudi (18 kms)

(13) Tirukurunkudi-Thiruvanparisaaram(40 kms short route);

(14) Tiruvanparisaaram-Thiruvaataru(60 kms via Padmanabhapuram);

(15) Thiruvaataru-Thiruvananthapuram(40 kms via Maarthandam);

(16) Thiruvananthapuram-Chenganoor (150 kms via Athur/Kottarkadai)

(17) six divya desams in and around Chenganoor upto Chenganachery (60 kms);

(18) Chenganachery Thirukodithanam-Thirukaatkarai(70 kms);

(19) Thirukaatkarai-Thirumoozhikalam(25 kms)

(20)Thirumoozhikalam-Thiruvithuvacodu(150 kms via Angamaali/Thrissur) 

(21) Thiruvithuvacodu-Thirunaavai(30 kms short route)

(22)Thirunaavai-Guruvayoor(55 kms)

(23) Guruvayoor-Coimbatore domestic  airport(150 kms)

Day Morning Evening Night halt
 Darshanam at    ( number of temples )
 01 Srirangam,

Thirumeyyam

Thirugoshtiyur

Thirupullani

Thirumoghur

Thirumaliruncholai

Thirukoodal

 

Madurai         7
02 Thiruthankaal

Srivilliputtur

Varagunamangai

Thirupulingudi

Iratti Tirupati

Then Thiruperai

Alwar Tirunagari

Thirukolur

 

Srivaikuntam           9
03 Perungulam

Srivaikuntam

Nanguneri

Thirukurungudi

 

Thirukurungudi Malai nambi (afternoon)

Thiruvanparisaram

Thiruvataaru

 

Trivandrum            6
04 Thiruvananthapuram

Thiruvaranvila(aramula)

Thiruchenkundroor

Thiruvanvandoor

Thiruvalla

Thirupuliyur

Thirukodithanam

ERnakulam           7
05 Thirukatkarai

Thirumoozhikalam

Thiruvithuvacode

Thirunaavai

Guruvayur

   Yatra  ends …..

 

             5

Total 34 temples

Malai nadu      13

Pandya nadu   18

Srirangam

Guruvayur

The complete  details of  all the  13 temples  would be shared in the upcoming posts soon .

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Adiyen Ramanuja dasan

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The Srivaishnava Acharyar “Swamy Nam pillAi .. who was glorified as “LokaA chAryar”


Those were the days  when  Swami Nampillai  the distinguished  Acharyar  was  delivering religious discourses at Srirangam temple attended by many devotees  . As Swamys discourses were absolutely soul stirring due its sweetness  in delivery devotees used to throng in thousands inside the temple . Many occasions there was a confusion about the crowds pouring inside the temple  whether some festival was going on there ,  as the numbers used to match with the number of devotees in Utsavams .

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His reputation was increasing and consequently the reputation of other Acharyas was  being overlooked.

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A contempory of Swamy Nampillai was Sri Kandadai Thozappar , grandson of Swamy Mudali Andaan  the  foremost  disciple of Swamy Ramanuja  .

Swamy Thozhappar was very knowledgeable . Somehow he  became increasingly jealous about the fame and reputation of Swamy Nampillai which was going up day by day.

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One evening  while he was returning from the temple shrine ,  by divine will  he noticed  Swamy Nampillai proceeding into the shrine  with few hundreds  of disciples . Because of the unbearable envy Thozhappar instantly  abused Swamy Nampillai in strong words inside the shrine itself  amongst the disciples  .

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Swamy Nampillai was calm and polite accepting the pungent words . Inspite of the humiliating abuses  heaped on him  , Swamy Nampillai  unshaken approached LORD and offered his worship seeking forgivance wondering whether inadvertently he had committed any transgression  to the  great devotee  Thozhappar .

Upset , he reached home and was seeking pardon repeatedly mentally to the great Acharya .

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Swamy Kandadai Thozhappar  reached home relaxed ,  after insulting the great seer . Thozappars wife was an advanced devotee with  deep insight and  divine knowledge .  She was through her fathers side disciple  of Swamy Nampillai .

jjjjk She came to know about the misconduct of her husband  which pained her deeply. True to her Acharya bhakthi , she abandoned all the household work as she was convinced  that because of the  arrogant behavior of her husband both would be doomed  for the  bhagavatha apachara.

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She was grief stricken and ignored her husband. Thozhappar who was casual wondered with her sudden change in behaviour .

He was used to see  his wife welcoming him with affection and attended on him with love and praise  .  Amazed  , He was forced to question her unusual way of behavior  especially for the very first time he experienced  with her conduct .

With uncontrollable grief  she replied  ,  

Swamin ..

Do you know what type of bhagavtha apachara you have committed ?

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Swamy Nampillai  is reincarnation of Swamy Nammazhwar. 

You have dared to abuse a noble soul who is enlightening many many bhagavathas day in and out by his lucid divine commenteries on Lords vaibhavam.

And you dared to insult him in the shrine itself without any remorse.  What privilege do you think you will have when one abuses his own Acharya.  You have committed  a great sin and you are also aware of it . 

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Since I am your wife , you may have right over my body  and  can punish me but remember I am alive because of my Acharya , who is Swamy Nampillai. I cannot forgive any one  who abuses  the devotees of the LORD  .

You are also aware of the aphorisms  . The sin you have committed  is grave and you  pretend to be ignorant . Hence forth there can not be any connection between us  . And I do not wish to continue to live with you and never wish to destroy myself ( soul ) .Let me seek my path of life which takes me to Acharyans Lotus feet .

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Thozhapar was shaken with the turn of events .

He deeply introspected himself  and belonging to a  distunguised  srivaishnava family was disturbed with his behaviour.

He understood that this rude behaviour was because of his envy and jealousy. 

He appreciated his wife for revealing the truth and enlightening him .

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He found solace in her words  and seeked a solution to bridge his unruly behaviour by seeking forgivance and amend the same.  

His wife said  if anything is lost in river , we must seek the same in river and not in a pond  .  

Similarly , she said , Swamy Nampillai is a great Acharya with a kind heart . You need to just fall at his feet and plead forgivance .

If he forgives , you will be saved  and seeking  forgivance from the LORD also will not save you .

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Thozhappar politely replied , that he was too harsh on Swamy  and was afraid to face him. Insulting the revered Acharyar in the temple amongst many people makes him shiver in meeting him.

Ashamed with this conduct , my feet tremble to meet the seer .

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With humility he requests his wife to accompany him  so that Swamy will be appeased and being his disciple he may pardon  for  her  association .

As it was  too late in the night , both of them agree that the first thing they will do the next morning was to seek Acharyars forgivance .

At the other end , Swamy Nampillai was greatly upset .

He sent all his disciples away . He gave up his food  for the night and was questioning his own flaws that could disturb Thozhappar which resulted in his outbursts.

He felt strongly that he must have somehow misbehaved with the distinguished vaishnava .

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He decided that he will seek his forgivance as the sin accredited  in misbehaving with a vaishnava  shall be severe . 

His mind was wavering .

He decided he will not waste time till the next day .

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He immediately left to Thozhappars residence covering himself with a white blanket  . As the doors were closed , he did not wanted to disturb them .

He decided he will rest near the pial at the entrance of the house the whole night and the next day when Thozhappar opens the door he will fall at his feet to seek pardon .

The next day , in the early hours , both Thozhappar opens  the door

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 To the  surprise they find some person with a white blanket covered  standing . 

As the lighting  was poor they enquire  about him .

Swamy Nampillai  replies  ..Swami !!!  I am a great sinner . 

Thozhappar  was shocked ..  

Unexpected  of his approach He asked him , What was the need to rest on the pial before  his house  the same night  .

Have you come to quarrel with me  early in this day for the abuses hurled by me yesterday ??

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Nampillai  with all humility submitted to Thozhappar .

Swamin !!! Please forgive me !!

Adiyen had just come here to ascertain that any misconduct of mine should not disturb your peace of mind .

Having born in a distinguished family of Swamy MudaliAndaan  , adiyen requests your kindness  to please let me know the misconduct to earn abuse by a revered Acharyar like you .

Please forgive me for any misconduct either in words or deeds .

Swamin !! If not you , who will be kind enough to forgive me ..

Thozhappar was astounded at the humble appeal of Swamy Nampillai. He was at loss of words  and at the unexpected turn of events  , especially when he himself was proceeding to seek forgiveness from Nampillai  .

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With tears he pleaded  Swamin ” True to my wife’s words  what a big heart you possess . It is very difficult to see people with such humility .

I was under an illusion that you are Acharyar for a few disciples . I know realise that you are a teacher ( Acharyar )  of the whole world.

Henceforth I shall propagate devareer as Lokacharyar . Thozhappar  welcomed  Nampillai  and washed his feet and accepted him as his Acharyar .

Swamy Manavalamaamuni mentions this incident one of  his pasuram in the great work Upadesarathinaimala  saying..

Thunnu pukazh KanthAdai ThOzappar tamm uhappAl Yenna UlahAriyanO yenRu uraikka —

pinnai UlahAriyan yenum pEr NampiLLaikku      Ongi vilahAmal ninRathu yenrum mEl..                           verse .(51)

Translated in English ..

ThOzhappar of wide fame belonging to the KanthAdai vamsam with joyful respect asked o  NampiLLai  once ” Are You THE teacher of the Universe  (LOkAchAryan)? ” out of respect for his extraordinary  scholarship and humility .

From that day onwards ,  that name of LokAcchAryan stayed with NampiLLai  as a mark of his  srivaishnava guNa visEsham .Later, NampiLLai’s sishyar, Vadakku- Thiruveedhi PiLLai gave the name of LokaachAryan to his son out of his own deep reverence for his AchAryan .

This son – who became a very famous AchAryan later – came to be revered as PiLLai Lokam Jeeyar .

  Later , Thozhappar  had to leave to Kancheepuram and serve the Lordships there .He  conducted the Thirukalyana utsavam for Kanchi Devaperumal with Andal Naachiyaar.

In turn, Varadar  as a measure of showing his  love  towards Thozhappar,  arrived  in  Thozhappar’s thirumaaligai.

He revealed  in Thozhappar’s dream  that  the deity being worshipped  was the Shatberam  in Thozhappar’s thirumaaligai.

 Thozhappar, on seeing the grace of the Lord became very happy and named him ‘Aahuya Rakshaka Hari’ (Azhaithu Vaazhvitha Perumal).

This deity darshan can be had in MudaliAndaans Thirumaligai ( Ashram )

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Swamy Nam pillai became Lokacharyar because he did not loose his temper with even the ones who abused him , instead showed the qualities of  patience and mercy  of sri vaishnava  which converted others too.

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Pictures : Courtesy Google pics uploaded by devotees

The Acharyar who authored Suprabhatam to Lord Sreenivasa ( TIRUMALA ) 600 years ago….Bhayankaran for PrativAdIs (opponents). Servant of servants to Srivaishnavas


The holy verses of awakening the Supreme LORD at TIRUMALA has four aspects . Glorified as “Suprabhatam” is the actual awaking of Lordships Sree and Vishnu. This early morning song suprabhatham slokas comprising of (29 verses , stotram 11 verses , prapatti 16 verses and mangalam 14 verses) which is essentially a glorifications and the last Prapatti through Sree and the beautiful Mangalam to Lordships which serves as a comolete unconditional surrender

kazhiyur varadan's blog

 Swamy  Mudumbai Nambee Ananthacharya  was one amongst the 74 Simhadipathees  nominated by Jagathacharyar  Swamy Ramanuja .

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Swamy Ananthacharyar  belonged to the illustrious family    of  the great srivaishnava stalwarts  Swamy Pillai Lokacharyar and Vadakku Thiruvidhi pillai . .

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   During 1360 , Swamy Ananthacharyar was blessed with a son who was named as Hasthagiri Ananthar Anna being ardent devotees of Lord Varadaraja . ( Lord Varadaraja has been giving darshan to the devotees at this holy place called “Hastha giri”.  ‘Hastham’ means elephant and “giri “ means hill) .        The young  boy  was very attractive  and  devotional right from his childhood  .The boy was admitted in to the school of  Swamy Nayana varadacharyar  ,  the direct descendent of Swamy  Vedanta Desikar . He received the Vedic inputs from his Acharya and progressed in leaps and bounds by his sheer devotion .

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During this  period  , a staunch Advaitin Narasimha Mishra had come to Kancheepuram .  He…

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The oldest of the Vaishnavaite temples in South ( Older than Srirangam , the place where the famous verse ……Om Apavitrah Pavitro Vaa Sarva-Avasthaam Gato-Aa pi Vaa | Yah Smaret-Punddareekaakssham Sa Baahya-Abhyantarah Shucih” had its origin…. and the darshan of SUPREME LORD that qualifies one to get Moksham….


 

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This Divyadesam is located at about 20 km north of Trichirappalli, enroute to Thuraiyur  and situated in a  14 acre  site and resembles like an Old fort with strong compound walls  The temple  is older than Srirangam  and  built   ahead of LORD  Rama’s  avataram . Hence the name Aadhi Vellarai.   Tiruvellarai  in tamil means white rock and this  grand temple is situated on a white granite hill which is almost 90 to  100 feet high .

Lord   Pundareekaksha Perumal. ( LORD with Lotus Shaped eyes) graces the devotees with abundant mercy .   This temple is surrounded by a 36 feet high wall and resembles almost like a  fort .

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The second tower entrance  leads us inside the temple  which has  huge sculptures on the wall  painted . The Bali peetam here is a huge one  which has special significance . The third tower leads us into the inner sanctum  of the temple.

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There are two  entrances dwaras (doors) leading to this sanctum sanatorium  . One is called as Dakshinayana dwaram and the other is Uttarayana dwaram. The dakshinaya dwaram remains open from Aadi to Marghazi ( August to Jan Mid)  and the other door remains open from ( Mid January- July) Thai -Aani.

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This is in accordance with the movement of the Sun’s path.

Apart from Utharayana and Dakshinayana Gates, the sanctum sanctorum has one more entrance called ‘Naazhi Ketta Vaayil’ where it is believed that the Lord was intercepted and questioned by  goddess , Mahalakshmi  upon his returning home later, after his sojourn.

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The main deity  LORD PUNDARIKAKSHA  has Sun and Moon on either side   offering their services . Garuda and Adisesha ( The serpent God in a human form, as the main deity is in a standing posture) are also near the main deity. Markendeya Maharshi and Boodevi are seated  near  LORD’S lotus  feet and is believed to have prayed here at this place.

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As per  Scriptures , this  temple was built by the Emperor Sibi . 
This great Emperor Shibi, with his vast army  once came  to this place  to destroy the asuras  and protect the people.
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On their way to this place , a  huge white swine appeared  .
The army with all its might  chased the animal .
On chasing  the animal around the white  hill they saw the animal disappear near to an ant hill.
  The King  saw sage Markandeya performing penance there. 
The King reached his ashram and paid obeisances .
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The sage told the emperor that  Lord had  indicated   before them  through  Varaha  near the ant hill  to  bestow  darshan to all.
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The sage advised the emperor to perform abhishek to the ant-hill  nearby  with milk and submit with all devotion. . 
To the delight of all the devotees , Lord Sriman  Narayana  appeared giving  darshan to all till now since then.
 
The Pallava Kings and Hoysala kings have contributed a lot in the reconstruction of the temple.
 

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The temple maintains beautiful garden outside the prakaram  and it is famous for its Swastika shaped tank on the Northern side of the temple.The  shape  seems is to give privacy for people, while having bath. 

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There are many inscriptions in the temple and it also mentions about this unique pond which was built by one feudal Lord under Pallava kings.

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  The temple precincts are kept neat and clean.Outside  the prakaram  we can have darshan of  Thayar Senkamala Valli , and Chakra Thazhwar .


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 During the festivals, after gracing the devotees  around the town , Perumal has to account for his time to his consort by informing the time he started, the places he visited etc., at this gate in order to gain entry into the temple. 

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To seek LORDS darshan one has to climb 18 Steps at the entrance .

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At the very entrance of this temple  there  are  18 steps reminding us  of the 18 chapters of  Srimad Bhagvat Gita given to us by   LORD Pundareekakshan.

Proceeding further  we  come  across 4 steps that are  4 Vedas and later one reaches the Bali Peetam.

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It is believed that one’s wishes submitted to the Perumal at the Balipeetam with the turmeric kappu  are automatically taken care by Him. Abhishekam is done to the Bali Peetam only . 

  From here, we  enter  the Perumal sannidhi by ascending 5 steps  further  representing the PanchaBhoothams (Fire, Water, Space, Air and Earth) and  slowly crossing the Naazhi Kettaan Vasal. Now we see   2  entrances  Dakshinaayana Gate and Utharaayana Gate which are alternately opened for devotees  during the Dakshinayana/ Utharayana  six month periods. 

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As One climbs further 8 steps  we are reminded   of Ashtaakshara mantra   and  further   we move ahead  another  24 steps reminding  us  of Gayathri Mantram to arrive at the sanctum sanctorum,where  we have divya darishnam of our LORD  Senthaamarai Kannan (Pundareekaakshan)  along  with His consort Pankajacchelvi Naacchiyaar.

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 Uyakkondar was foremost disciple to  ” Swami Nathamuni ” .

Uyyakkondar  was  called as  Pundareekaakshar by his parents . Swamy Uyyakondar   appeared  in Tiru vellarai the famous Srivaishnava Divya desam  . 

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It is believed that  Swamy Pundarikakshar  parents had migrated from Madhyapradesh, and settled at Tiru vellarai, performing  devotional services  to Lord  Sri Pundareekaaksha Perumal at this divyadesam. 

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Swamy Uyakkondar had five prominent  disciples , of whom Manarkal nambi (also known as Rama mishra) was the most popular and important to our  Srivaishnava  school .  Swamy Uyyakondar taught the  disciples  Azhwars’  Naalayiram Divya Prabandam’ .This rock is called as ‘Uyyakkondaan Malai’ where Swamy taught his disciples .

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  After the  demise of  Swamy Uyakkondar’s wife,  the humble disciple swami Ramamishra took charge of the household chores at  his  Acharyars Uyakkondar’s house. He also took care of Uyakkondar’s young daughters like a dutiful mother . One day, when the children  were returing from daily bath at a nearby pond, the girls had to walk past a muddy stream and were hesitating to cross it.

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Lord  Rama mishra seeing their  confusion fell across the stream and asked the girls to use his back as a bridge. Seeing the foot marks on his disciples back, after their return, Uyakkondar  understood the humility of his disciple .

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Pleased , Swamy  Uyakkondar titled him Manarkal Nambi and renamed his birth place as Manarkal.

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Swamy Nathamuni, while  collecting  the Nalayiram  Divya Prabhantham from  our Nammalvar after the recitation of Kanninum siruthambu pasuram , was also presented with  a deity  of  Swamy Ramanujar                    ( Bhavishya Acharyar ) instructing him to handover the deity  to  the arriving Acharya who will be appearing shortly.

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When Nathamuni was about to depart ,  he passed on the deity  to Uyakkondar  for worship and  then  Uyyakondar handed over the deity to  Swamy Manarkal nambi which finally was handed over to  Sri Yamanucharya and worshipped .

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Once as per the directions of his Acharyar Swamy  Natha Muni,  Pundarikakshar  escorted  his  mother (Acharyars wife ) to her parent’s home.

  The womenfolk known as Vangipurathu Aachis made him sit in an corridor  and  fed him  with  stale remnants of food left over.

Pundarikakshar partook the same with relish as it was food offered to him by the Parijanas ( those dear to) of his Acharya.  On his return, on  he felt greatly elated and  narrated the incident to his Acharya.

The Acharya was overwhelmed and exclaimed ” Nammai Uyyak Kondeero?”

-Oh  You came to redeem me?”. From then on, he came to be known as Uyyak Kondaar.

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It is  believed that  all  of us must visit this temple at least once in  our lifetime in order to be eligible  for  Moksham .

Hence, there is  a  tradition at the temple to call ‘Thiruvellarai Kandeero- Thiruvellarai Kanden Aiyya’ (the devotees informing the Lord that they have seen Thiruvellarai Perumal  and that they are now ready/eligible for Moksham), a voice that is said to echo to the Lord up there. 

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Swamy Ramanujar spent a few months  in this divyadesam   after the unfortunate incident   at Srirangam , where some person wanted to poison him..

Another  most respected Acharyar  was Swamy   Vishnuchithar’s   who appeared in this divya desam  He  served Swamy Ramanuja at this place . A tank called Udayavar kulam  was dug for the use of  Jagathacharyar Swamy  Ramanuja during his stay . 

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Vishnuchithar’s was about  80 years younger than  Swami Ramanuja.  Swami Ramanuja  embarked upon the task of writing Sribhashya, a commentary on the Brahmasutras of Sage VedaVyasa. He engaged  Swami Kooratthazhwan to write down the commentary as he dictated. Unfortunately for him, Swami Koortthazhwan  services could not be extended by the divine will  Swamy was looking for a scholar who could help him finish the text.

He decided Swami Vishnuchithar’s would be the apt person to write down sribashya .

He was very pleased with Vishnuchithar’s  deep knowledge and  compared  him with Swami Kooratthazhwan and embraced him calling him ‘Engal Azhwano!’ (Your knowledge equals that of our Azhwan (Kooratthazhwan)..

 Vishnuchithar  was henceforth  called  as Engalazhwan.

Swami Ramanuja made Swami Engalazhwan a disciple of Thirukkurukaippiran Pillan. Swami Engalazhwan was also called Ammal  Acharyar since he was the  Acharya of Nadathur Ammal .

Adiyen had the bhagyam of having darisanam of  the present His Holiness Engalazhwan at Thiruvellarai 

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Adiyen Ramanuja dasan.

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Video credits : Thiruvellarai Swamy , Sri Soundhararajan Padmanabhan

Pictures : Google images

Swamy Koorathazhwan, foremost disciple of Swamy Ramanuja who was the embodiment of true compassion and humility….


Shrivathsa chinha mishrebhyo nama uktheem adheemahe!

Yadhukthasyas thrayee kante yaanthi manggala soothrathaam!!

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Salutations to  the great mahaan Srivathsa Chinha Misra (Swamy Koorathazhwan) whose Sri Sookthis became the thirumangaalyam  ( mangalasoothram ) of Veda Maatha.

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Swamy  Koorathazhwan appeared during the year 1010 AD at the  Kooram village about 16 kms from Kanchipuram, the temple town of Tamilnadu (Sowmya varusham  on Thai –Hastham star during  Jan-Feb as per English calendar ) to Sri Ananthan and Perundevi . Swamy is considered to be the amsam of “Srivatsam” which adorns  Lord’s chest.  As this mark is very close to where Thayar resides, he invariably inculcated Thayar’s  abundant compassion.

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Swamy  Koorathazhwan is  glorified as the “pavithram” of Swamy Ramanujar  thus proving his closeness to Swamy Ramanujar.

  Swamy Ramanujar felt incomplete without Mudaliandan Swamy and Koorath azwan. MudaliAndaan  is considered as “Yathiraja Padhuka and Dhandam( tridandam which a sanyasi hold in his hand) .

Swamy  Kooratathazhwan  is considered as Pavithram worn by Swamy Ramanujar. This has been revealed by Acharyar when he meets Swamy Thirughostiyur Nambi at Thirughostiyur .

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Swamy was also glorified as “Haaritha kula thilakar “(the best among born in Haritha kulam ) and belonged to an affluent wealthy family.  He was the chieftain of the entire village  of Kooram.

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He was an extremely intelligent who could grasp knowledge by  hearing once only .  He was a human  personification of compassion, generosity  and humility.

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Compassion, humanity, tolerance, shedding ego, detachment from material things, being faithful, being truthful,  feeding the needy, not harming anyone either by word,deed, thought , pardoning people who inflict harm on us, respecting elders , unflinching devotion at the lotus feet of  Acharyar Swamy Ramanujar with the firm faith contemplating only on Lord  Sriman Narayanan and not resorting to worship  of any demi god  were  the qualities of Swamy Koorathazhwan

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Koorathazhwan had a close association with Swamy Ramanujar at Kanchipuram even before  Swamy Ramanujar embraced Sanyasam and became the pontiff of Srivaishnavism. He lived with his family in Kooram  and continued with  dhadhiaaradhana kainkaryam.

 Later after Swamy Ramanujar took up sanyasam and went to Srirangam, as per Lord’s sankalpam an incident took place which changed the life of Kooratazhwan from a wealthy person to “Ramanuja dasan”

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It so happened that one night after dhadhiaaradhana kainkaryam was over, the doors of Kooratazhwan’s thirumaligai were closed with a big bang and the sound emanated from the bells of the door could be heard by Perundevi Thayar at Kanchipuram .

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Thayar enquired from Perumal about it for which Perumal replied that it was from the wealthy Kooratazhwan’s thirumaligai and extolled his kainkaryam to Thayar.  It was divine will to bless him with more kainkaryam and the divya dampathigal ordered Thirukachi nambigal who was fanning them to bring Azhwan to their presence.

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Thirukachi nambigal reached Kooram and informed Azhwan about the discussion Perumal and Thayar had regarding his wealth. Had any person been in his place, he would have jumped with joy to hear about Perumal’s description.  Kooratazhwan repented for his mistake that the noise emanated from the door disturbed the divya dampathigal and without a second thought distributed the entire wealth to the needy and set out to Srirangam to take asrayanam at Swami Ramanujar’s holy feet.

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While traversing through the forest, he observed that his wife was worried about something and on enquiry learnt that she was carrying a golden bowl for him to have food.  Kooratazhwan threw away the golden bowl saying that they were going to surrender to Ramanujar which was  very precious compared to this gold. Such was his vairaagyam.

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Koorathazhwan excelled in study of Vedas and scriptures and put them into practice.  He considered the entire Universe to be Perumal’s children and  ensured that everyone was properly taken care of by giving food which is required for sustenance. 

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He used to relentlessly  do “dhadhiyaaradhanai”(anna dhaana kainkaryam) every day from morning to night  as he believed that the wealth bestowed on him by the kind grace of the Lord should be utilised in a proper way.

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In the Divya Prabhandam ,  Ramanuja Nootrandhadhi, the great disciple of Swamy Ramanuja , Swamy  Thiruvarangathu amudanaar  praises Koorathazhwan in the 7th pasuram as

“Mozhiyai kadakkum Perum Pugazhaan* Vanjha Mukkurumbaam

Kuzhiyaik kadakkum* nam Koorathaazhwaan charan koodiya pin**

Pazhiyaik kadaththum Iraamanusan*pugazh paadi allaa

Vazhiyaik kadaththal*enakkiniyaadhum varththamanrey

In the above pasuram, Thiruvarangathu Amudanaar praises his Acharyan  Swamy Koorathazhwan with whose grace he got Ramanuja sambandham. 

Before becoming disciple of Swamy Ramanujar,  he was known as “Peria kovil nambi” and was in charge of temple administration, reading puranams, doing prohitam etc .in both Perumal and Thayar sannidhi.

 

  However, initially he was not comfortable with Swamy Ramanujar  directions whom Namperumal made incharge for ubhaya vibhutis(in charge of material and spiritual world) .He didn’t part with the rights of temple administration and hence Swamy Ramanujar could not proceed with  much reforms.

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Kooratazhwan as per Ramanujar’s advise undertook the task of slowly molding  Peria kovil nambi and was  thus successful.  Swamy Ramanujar could make  the necessary reforms in Srirangam temple which is being followed till date.

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Later, Peria kovil nambi realised Ramanujar’s greatness and approached him to be accepted as his disciple.  As Swamy felt that Kooratathazhwan was responsible for his transformation, he directed him to accept Koorathazhwan as his acharyar. Azhwan named him Thiruvarangathu amudanaar.  Amudanar cites this as “Koorathazhwan charan koodiya pin…”in Ramanuja Nootrandhadhi.

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Another interesting fact is that this is the only pasuram which praises Ramanujar’s thiruvadi sambandham and thus establishes koorathazhwan’s greatness.

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Koorathazhwan though  very intelligent, handsome, was very wealthy , had all the good qualities. Despite  all these  , he didn’t have slightest iota of ego.  Amudanar refers to these qualities as “Vanjha mukkurumbaam…”.

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Normally, a person even if he has anyone of the above quality would be puffed up by ego  .Koorathazhwan was an embodiment of all virtues and was very humble and poised.

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He had compassion  not only to humans but also to animals and plants. 

As mentioned earlier, he felt that all are God’s children and ensured that no one remains hungry. Hence he used to always feed the needy.

Many incidents in his life speak about Azhwan’s compassion to the world he lived .

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Once ,   when a frog was caught by a snake and was wailing, Koorathazhwan who was tender hearted fainted hearing the frog’s plight. 

In another instance, when he went into the banana plantation for cutting leaves to be used for serving food, he fainted when he saw milk oozing out of the banana stem .

  Such was his compassion and humanity.

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His ego never propped up when Udayavar asked him to go for 11th day ceremony at Periakovil nambi’s place.

When Periakovil nambi’s mother passed away, he approached Ramanujar to help him by sending someone for being part of the 11th day ceremony when the person himself is treated as the departed soul and offerings are made.  Only when the person is satisfied, the ritual is deemed  to be complete.

The person who goes in that form would be abstained from participating in any religious ceremonies for a period of one year.

  So it was difficult to find a person who would budge into his request.

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Kovil peria nambi requested Ramanujar to send one of his disciples for the purpose. Ramanujar felt that Kooratathazhwan alone could complete his task and advised him. 

Kooratathazhwan who could read Swamy Ramanujar’s desire participated in the 11th day ceremony and  when he was asked as to whether he was satisfied he replied in negative.  When Periakovil nambi offered him to give anything for appeasement, Koorathazhwan asked him to hand over his temple responsibilities.

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 Periakovil nambi had to budge in.  Koorathazhwan submitted the same to Ramanujar’s lotus feet.

  Swamy Ramanujar took incharge of the temple activities and assigned the job of purana patanam(reading puranam) and prohitam(main priest) to Koorathazhwan. 

These activities are till date being followed by Koorathazhwan’s descendants.

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Once while returning from Kaveri after having holy bath, he helped a pregnant woman by helping her to lift the water pitcher   unmindful of to which caste she belonged to.  In those days, orthodox people would be hesitant to do such activities but for our Azhwan , humanity was equal to Godliness.

To fulfill Yamunacharyar’s desire of writing a commentary for Brahma sutras,  Swamy Ramanujar along with Koorathazhwan undertook the arduous task of going to Kashmir for referring to   Bodhyana vritti .  Having procured the literature, while  returning, they were suddenly waylaid by the people sent by  Kashmiri pundits to return the manuscript Ramanujar had to reluctantly part with the grantham and was depressed as he could not fulfil his acharyar’s desire.

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At that time, Koorathazhwan humbly submitted that he could reproduce the entire grantham which he happened to read after Ramanujar retired for the day.  As he had a highly grasping ability , he reproduced the entire commentary at the  lotus feet of  Swamy Ramanujar and played a vital role in composing SriBhashyam-the authentic commentary on Brahma Sutras.  Saraswathi-goddess of learning herself declared to Ramanujar that this was the most authentic commentary and gave  Swamy Ramanujar the title “Bhasyakaarar”.

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Once when Srirangam was about to be waylaid, by the invaders , Acharyar  Peria Nambigal – acharyar of Swamy Ramanujar took some soil  and uttered some mantras to evade intruders.  Having done so, he gave the  same  to Swamy Ramanujar ordering him to give to a person who was blemish-less without any ego  so as to sprinkle it on all four sides of Srirangam border.  Immediately Swamy Ramanujar assigned the task  to Koorathazhwan who accomplished it successfully.

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Once  it so happened , Koorathazhwan happened to see through a key hole of a door , how  Swamy Ramanujar graced a deaf and dumb person by placing his holy feet on that person’s head.  Koorathazhwan lamented and regretted that he was not so fortunate as that person and was feeling ashamed of his intellect as Ramanujar had assigned him various tasks which acted as an obstruction for  obtaining similar grace as that person.

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To save  Swamy Ramanujar from the atrocities of Krimikanta Cholan the tyrant king , Koorathazhwan pleaded  Sway Ramanujar to accept his white robes and leave Srirangam along with Mudaliandan  to a safer place along the banks of Kaveri river. Swamy  Ramanujar and Mudaliandan left incognito to Melnadu and was thus protected from  the terror Krimikanta cholan.

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 Swamy Koorathazhwan donned the orange robes of Swamy Ramnujar and appeared before the king along with aged Peria Nambigal.  Peria Nambigal succumbed to the king’s punishment loosing  his eyes.  Koorathazhwan  who regretted for having seen this sad episode , voluntarily plucked his eyes and left the place.  The perplexed king’s attention was thus diverted.  The blind Koorathazhwan  managed to serve  Peria Nambigal who due to advanced age could not tolerate the pain and attained acharyar’s feet. This incident is remembered at Kooram on the 5th day of Azhwan thirunatchitira utsavam.  Koorathazhwan  is  adorned with orange robes and Swamy Ramanujar in white robes to remember the divine pastime .

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Swamy Koorathalvan was staying at Thirumalirumcholai  during his exile from Swamy Ramanuja  under divine intervention  . Swamy  was  carrying out pushpa kainkaryam ( Flower service )  for  Lordships  every day. He glorified  the lordships “Azhagar” with Sundarabaahu stavam which forms part of Pancha Sthavams .  The remaining  are Sriranga sthavam, Sri Varadaraja sthavam, Sristhavam, Athimaanusha sthavam.

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Once ,  during  the month of  December  ( Margazhi maasam)  Koorathazhwan walked the hills and reached the temple . He recited  the  verses of Andals glorification of LORD  from  her  Thiruppavai  . Later with all the due respects   he offered a  garland to the LORD .The priest in turn honored Koorthazhwan   with  sathari ( Srisatakopam)  .

 

On returning from the temple en route the hills , Koorathazhwan was feeling   sad  for some reason .  He looked around the  majestic hills . He passed  the rivulets and reached  his house . He  sat outside his house and was in a trance .

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Suddenly a young well built man emerged  from no where and  politely stood before Azhwan . He asked ..Swamin  What is making you dull today ?

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Swamin !!! I assure you whatsover the  problem,  I would  solve the same  . 

Azhwan was silent ..

Despite repeated such assurances, Koorathazhwan, insisted that there was no way his problem could be solved.

At his casual  reply , the  charming man got surprised.

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He  went near Azhwan and said …Swamin Do you know who I am ?

Swamy  Koorathazhwan replied with all humility,

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Swamin ! ”Adiyen  can recognize  you  very well.

You are the Lord himself”. 

Amazed at how  azhwan could recognize him,  Lord was keen to know ..

Azhwan replied  that he could smell the Lord fragrance  from  the garland that he had offered for the day.

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Coming back to the question of what was troubling azhwan, azhwan still insisted that though he was the Lord himself, his trouble could not be resolved even by him.

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 Lord insisted for Azhwans  explanation …

“What is the problem – you have to tell me?”

Azhwan replied,

“ The  Thiruppavai  pasuram mentions your anubhavam with the yadava kulam.

Adiyen am sad that   I was not fortunate to  be born in the yadava kulam.

Now that I have  Swamy Ramanuja  association ,

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Adiyen is eligible for  moksham.  

However adiyen cannot be associated with the yadu kulam where devareer ( LORD) was there with each one of them to their joy …

Can adiyen experience that big  joy of being part of your kulam?”now ……………………….

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The Lord truly had no answer to his query !

Azhwan was always in the mood of serving LORD ..

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On returning to Srirangam from Melnadu after a long period of 12 years, Swamy Ramanujar met his dear disciple and embraced  Koorathazhwan tightly who had just returned from Thirumaliruncholai after knowing about his Acharyars arrival.

 

Swamy Ramanuja advised him to go to Kanchipuram and pray to  Lord Varadarajar for restoring his eyes. Koorathazhwan with the help of few disciplies reached Kanchipuram and composed Varadaraja sthavam as per his acharyar’s instructions. 

  Lord  pleased with his devotion, appeared before him to bestow boon, Koorathazhwan requested the Lord to give  him eyesight which he could see HIM and Acharyar Swamy Ramanuja .

He also pleaded to  bestow moksham to Naaluran (the person who was responsible for instigating cruel thoughts to Krimikanta cholan) and all those associated with him.

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Lord Varadarajan bestowed both the boons. 

When Swamy Ramanujar who was in Srirangam came to know of this, he felt so joyful that he was confident of getting moksha as he had” Koorathazhwan sambhandham”.

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Azhwan always used to glorify Mudaliandan  who was Swamy  Ramanujar’s nephew that he was very fortunate to have deha sambandham too whereas  he had only atma sambandham.

Koorathazhwan and his wife Andal were blessed by  Peria Perumal HIMSELF with children.  Once due to heavy rains, the wealthiest person Koorathazhwan who was now living on Uncha vrutti   in Srirangam could not go out and starved the whole day.  His wife Andal who could not see his plight prayed to Lord Ranganatha who was being offered the night prasadam known as “Aravanai prasadam”.

With a heavy heart, she thought that while Lord Ranganatha was  being offered with  varieties of  dishes , her husband was allowed to starve. Lord Ranganatha immediately answered her prayers by appearing in a  priest’s dream ordering him to take temple prasadam with full temple paraphernalia to Koorathazhwan’s house.  Koorathazhwan was surprised to see a visitor at that odd time with prasadam.

  He guessed that it must be his wife’s act which made the priests arrive at that time.  As he felt that the temple prasadam had to be sold to get income for the temple, he simply honoured by taking two servings of the prasadam .  The Lord appeared in his dream and said that he would be blessed with two sons who would be considered and brought up as the Lord’s own children.  Swamy Ramanujar fulfilled his acharyar,Yamunacharyar’s desire to name two befitting persons after Parasara rishi and Veda Vyasar.   Swamy Ramanujar named them Parasara bhattar and Vedavyasa bhattar(Srirama pillai)..

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Koorathazhwan who was always in the mood of serving his Acharyar, approached Peria Perumal with a prayer to leave this material body before his acharyar so that he could receive him with poorna kumbham when Swamy Ramanujar would decorate Thirunaadu.

  When  Swamy Ramanujar questioned him about this  strange act, Azhwan  quoted   the beautiful verse

“Soozh visumpanimugil…. from Thiruvaimozhi …that means

“ when the muktatma enters Vaikuntam, he is received by the inmates with due honours…..

he submissively replied that  he wished to be in continuous service to his Acharyar and wanted to welcome him in  Srivaikuntam .

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Contemplating on Swamy Ramanujar, Koorathazhwan left his body by  uttering a sloka on his acharyar(thanian on Ramanujar)  which every Srivaishnava recites daily

yO nityam achyuta pAdAmbuja yugma rukma   

   vyAmOhatastaditarANi tRuNAya mEnE |
asmad gurOr bhagavatO asya dayaikasindhOh 

   rAmAnujasya charaNou SaraNam prapadyE |

May Koorathazhwan   who pardoned  his enemy and prayed for him , teach us how to love.

Azhwans appearance day (THAI HASTHAM)   January 26th 2019 is celebrated all over the world in Vaishnava temples and all vaishnavas praise the glories of Azhwans bhakthi towards Acharyar

Few pastimes are shared in the below posts

https://kmkvaradhan.wordpress.com/2015/02/06/lords-very-dear-devotee-kooresa/

https://kmkvaradhan.wordpress.com/2016/01/29/swami-kurathazhwan-atmagunas/

Watch the following clips in which the vaibhavam of Kooram and Azhwan is explained by the temple Bhattar

Swamy Koorath azhwan thiruvadigaley sharanam

Adiyen Ramanuja dasan

Photographs : Courtesy Google images

When the great saint “Thirugyyana Sambandhar” honored the Sri Vaishnava “Thirumangai Azhwar ” ( A divine pastime )


The Sri vaishnava Divya desam  of “Thirivikarama Perumal Temple”  is located near  Seerkazhi in Tanjore district ( Tamil Nadu). It’s about half mile away from the Seerkazhi Railway station. Lord Srirama Vinnakara Thadalan  graces the devotees  as  Lord Thiruvikrama as he did in Thiruvekka and Thiru uragam divya desams  of Kanchipuram.

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 Lord in Thirukovilur  adorns  shankhu and chakaram as abharanam ,  and in Thiru uragam of kanchipuram  he is without them and raises his left and right lies up in order to scale the whole world by his foot,  a majestic darisanam to be cherished by every devotee  .

But here in Seerkazhi, Lord SrimanNarayana graces  as Thirivikrama with all his five weapons with his left hand extending upto the left foot, which is folded upwards.

The temple priest was kind in  explaining about the divine pastimes of the Lordships here , which makes one rush to this temple .

The Moolavar of this Divyadesam is Thirivikaraman also glorified  as Thadalan and Ulagalanthan. One can have Lords Ulagalantha sevai. (ie) in the Nindra Thirukolam .

Goddess ( Thayaar)  in this  holy place  is glorified as Loga Nayaki. The Utsavar Thaayar is Mattavizh Kuzhali.  An interesting incident  happened at this  place few hundred years back  .

Once the great Parama shivan devotee ,Thirugyana Sambandar( one of the four Shaivakuravar was staying  near to this temple in a mutt) . He was one of the most prominent of the sixty-three Nayanars.  Our  Thirumangai azhwar along with devotees were passing by the mutt .

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Glories of the Azhwar was being sung by his Azhwars followers .

The disciples  of Thiru Gyana Sambandhar who  asked the followers of Thirumangai azhwar to maintain silence till they crossed their mutt and wished their guru is not disturbed  .  

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Azhwar   was over hearing  the discussion  amongst the disciples about Thirugyana Sambandar and wishes to have an audience with the saint .He takes the opportunity and thus   walks  straight into their  mutt.  

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The  saint  Thirugyana Sambandar   is spell bound looking at Azhwar’s majestic  appeal .He welcomes  him and cordially invites him for a  devotional debate . Azhwar with abundant glow  begins with  a song on the Lord  Sriman Narayana  the cause of all causes ….and the param porul whom one must seek for ever ….

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Azhwar  continues to glorify  the LORD of the same holy place  by quoting the divine verses

“Oru Kuralai Iru Nila Moovadi Mann….” regarding the majestic  posture of the Lord at this Divya desam and the opulence LORD carries on bestowing abundant mercy …

Hearing the thundering voice and the terrific  command of Azhwar in the glorification of the LORD the revered saint   Thirugyana Sambandar  had torrent of tears  flowing  . The sweet music along with the  intricate meaning made him swoon in LORDs own world imagining the divine pastime .
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A true devotee he was ,   he at once prostrated  Azhwar and presented  him  the spade (vel) which was  honored to him by Goddess Aadhiparashakti .   Pleased with Azhwar’s entry and the honour  , he immediately commanded his disciples to glorify the Azhwar.

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Both of them embraced  each other and bore good bye in a sad mood and paved way to the unity of Saivism and Sri Vaishnavam.

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Adiyen Ramanuja dasan 

Video credits : Thanks to Araiyar Sevai STD Pathasala

……ELEVEN GARUDA SEVA UTSAVAM Jan 24th – 26th, 2020


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Offering  countless obeisances to Asmath Acharyar, Sri Sri  Mudaliandan Swamy and all spiritual masters ,  Adiyen wishes to share our  travel and darisanam experiences  at Thirunangoor done few years back . We had  attended this  great festival twice  few years back and  wish to share the divine experiences to all the devotees .

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It will be a great fortune and mercy for the ones who will be attending this year festival  on Thai Amavasai  which is being celebrated from 24-01-2020 to 26-02-2020 at Thirunangoor and get the blessings of our Thirumanga Azhwar .Watch the clip and get in that mood of devotion ….

 

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The remote  village of Thirunangoor near Sirkazhi reverberates with satsangh   every year Thai Amavasya and the succeeding 2  days are celebrated in a  very grand manner. And the  great devotee who started  was this Sri Srinivasachaar

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On Thai Amavasya, Thirumangai Azhwar  the great saint of  Vaishnava sampradaya is given Manjal Kuliyal  (holy bath with turmeric water) which is being celebrated in this remote village past  12 centuries .

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The next day, 11 Garuda Seva of LORD  is celebrated which is being done since past  100 years .The third day marks the return of Azhwar to Tiruvali-Thirunagari temple. Srivaishnavas make it a point to participate in these festivities.

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MANJAL NEERATAM AND ELEVEN GARUDA SEVAS   HELD AT THIRUNANGOOR EVERY YEAR ON THAI AMAVASAI  AND PRADHAMAI DAY respectively.

??????????????????????????????? May the Supreme Lord bestow me the knowledge to describe about the Garuda Seva. Adiyen seeks the blessings of all the   devotees  , Acharyas and  Azhwars   for  describing the great event .

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Thirumangai Azhwar  affectionately  called as Kaliyan, was the valiant army chief of the then Chola King that the king gifted him with a small territory to rule over.

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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 this earth to transform this valiant king to a  devotee , laid the condition that he should  serve  1000 Srivaishnavas 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 srivaishnavas.

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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 the egoistic  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 Srivaishnavas 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. He  waylays 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 ties it .

Not being satisfied with the loot, he  advances towards them and tries to remove the Thirumetti of Thayar with all his might but  is unsuccessful.

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By coming in contact with Thayar’s thiruvadi, realisation dawns on him.  He is amazed .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 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.

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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.

He repents for all his earlier deeds and outbursts his  divine pourings starting with  the wonderful pasuram

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“Vaadinene Vaadi….” and decides to glorify Perumal by visiting holy places in India..

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He is transformed as Thirumangai Azhwar and riding on his Aadalma horse glorified Perumal in about 86 divya desams.

Check the appended post appended below for more details of Azhwar’s appearance vaibhavam…

https://kazhiyurvaradanblog.in/2017/12/02/today-is-the-appearance-day-of-thirumangai-azhwar-our-parakaalan-kaalan-for-people-who-refuted-paran/

https://kmkvaradhan.wordpress.com/2017/12/02/today-is-the-appearance-day-of-thirumangai-azhwar-our-parakaalan-kaalan-for-people-who-refuted-paran/

                                         OUR PILIGRIMAGE EXPERIENCES

With the directions given by senior devotees we reached Thirunangoor in the evening and  discussing about the divine pastimes of Azhwars with elders .

Though we did not have a proper resting place all of us relaxed lying down at the temple entrance awaiting Azhwars arrival  as it was  almost midnight when we reached Thirunangoor.

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The  village of Thirunangoor  is fully crowded with many devotees . We all relaxed in front of a house near Thirunagari temple. Suddenly around 1.30 A.M. in the  early morning, we were awakened by sounds of  crackers and trumpets .

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The drums and Nadaswaram  were being played to welcome our Azhwar  .

On enquiry, we were told that Azhwar’s purapaadu ( procession )  was about to start and Azhwar was being dressed as the chief .

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https://www.youtube.com/watchv=NtXbiYGBi08&index=31&list=PL28444E81CFBBC177

Adiyen was keen to join the procession amongst many many senior devotees and the excitement in following Azhwar . Un mindful adiyen took a shower near a bore well and quickly changed my clothes and applying  Urdhvapundram ran behind the crowd to be as close  to Azhwar and the devoted priests .  

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It was totally dark with  few  street lights  which were going ON and Off  and sad that  there were no proper roads. Unmindful of the thorns and stones, all the bhagavathas were  literally running behind the Azhwar as some one is waiting for us .

True !……

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The all compassionate LORD is so keen to meet the Azhwar for his upliftment . Adiyen  had the same feeling .

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As it was too difficult to carry children in the crowd  my family followed us by hiring a  motor car amongst other devotees .

This unique devotion  of the villagers and the devotees coming from far off places has to be seen in person to taste the bliss .  

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The  holy intention of the procession ( purapaadu)  is Azhwar personally goes to each  of the 11 temples, glorifies the respective Perumals while going for Manjal Neeratam and personally invites  the LORDSHIPS  to  grace them to come to Thirumanimaada kovil for the Garuda utsava darshanam  which will be held the next day. 

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The tradition of glorifying the LORD at the respective divyadesams  by the pasurams sung by Azhwar is done with all humility

. ??????????????????????????????? Let me attempt to narrate the happenings in the chilly night of Amavasai . Our Azhwar (Thirumangai Azhwar) was seated majestically  in a well-decorated palanquin and the procession  started from the temple  Azhwar proceeds  to Thirukuraiyalur, his birth place.

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The crowd braves the chilly weather to somehow occupy the temple corridor to  have the closest darshan of Azhwar and Perumal . It was 2.30 AM when we reached this temple .  We could see hundreds  of devotees following the procession .

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The Azhwar literally runs and the bhagavathas also run behind the azhwar. Adiyen participated in the procession and literally was in bliss being with advanced devotees . It was a memorable trek for spiritual quest .

The zeal cannot be explained.

We are in THIRUKURAIYALUR, the appearance place of Thirumangai Alwar.

??????????????????????????????? The Temple Priest along with the senior devotees receive  Azhwar  with due temple honours and mangalasaasanams. The first pasuram  starting with “VAADINEN VAADI” was  recited .

It was as if Azhwar was almost there guiding us .

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The pasuram literally brought chilled tears in my eyes .  Adiyen was able to feel the soul literally craving for HIS grace and the nectar was directly being fed .

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Was able to meet  bhagavathaas who were carrying out  “PUSHPA KAINKARYAM FOR THE AZHWAR ON THESE TWO DAYS”.  

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Ahead of this recitation we were offered hot prasadam ( Kesaree) .This prasadam became a benchmark for me to offer it LORD later .

After honouring the prasadam adiyen moved near to the temple premises where the devotees were thinning away .

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Offered humble obesiances to LORD NARASINGA PERUMAL and prayed LORD to bestow his abundant mercy in having satsangh always .

The special feature in this big festival is that without any discretion, all the residents of  the 11 villages participate in this function and the hospitality  extended by the local residents cannot be described in words.

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All the bhagavathas who attend this function are sumptuously fed . We can see the village residents  voluntarily offering us buttermilk,  hot milk and food etc en route

They all consider it as their own family function. Now our  Azhwar proceeds  to THIRUMANGAIMAADAM , the birth place of Kumudavalli Thayar., who was solely responsible for transforming  our Azhwar into a Srivaishnavite.

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It’s a  very old temple and  the darshan of Azhwar specifically at this place reveals his liking to this place and his consort .

After recitation of the respective pasurams and mangalashashanams , we were offered  Chakrapongal prasadam  which was honoured . The sweet prasad , the sweet pasurams , the sweet crowd  and our SWEET AZHWAR was indeed most memorable night .

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On looking at the watch , Adiyen was amazed ,It was  already  3.30 AM  and was looking as fresh .

Never was Adiyen awake except for the Suprabatha seva at Tirumala Hills .

We must have  around  4 Kms .

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From here we proceeded along with Azhwar to

THIRUKAVALAMPADI    THIRUMANIKOODAM  and  THIRUPAARTHANPALLI 

  scattered around  for about 10 kms and as done in the temples our Azhwar requests Perumal to grace the garuda Utsavam the nest day after reciting the prescribed pasurams of the Divya desams .

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Few temples the time taken is more as per the number of Pasurams .Adiyen was fortunate to be around the learned bhagavathas and advanced devotees who were literally up to date with the history of temple and Azhwars pastimes .

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All these temples are scattered in a radius of 10 to 12 kms .Unmindful of the darkness , poor roads and route followed each of us were moving in a brisk pace to match the speed of the Procession .

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We must congratualate the palaquin bearers of Azhwar who are so energetic and infuse the spirit to just keep moving seeking his mercy . 

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The whole place is  charged with religious fervour and was eye- captivating. One must not miss to see bhagavatha’s bhakti for the Azhwar. Due to Azhwar’s sheer grace, Adiyen  was able to participate in the procession.

The procession was more or less like a running race.

It shows the Azhwar’s anxiety to have darshan of Perumal at different divya desams .

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In each of the temples, we could see  the utsavar anxiety  to receive the Azhwar by  waiting outside the garbagriham to welcome our Azhwar. 

Adiyen was overwhelmed with joy and at the same time  was stunned to see an ocean of Srivaishnavas running behind the Azhwar. True ! If a bhaktha makes a small attempt to seek him

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…LORD moves few miles to reach him  .All through the way, Perumal’s naamasmaranam was done and Azhwar’s vaibhavam was recapitulated.

Even the thorns and stones on the road  become flowers to the devotees now .Enjoying the company of a senior devotee adiyen suddenly noticed Azhwars procession moving inside a field lushy and so green . 

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For a moment,  was totally confused . Adiyen didn’t know what was happening.

The senior devotee explained  that it was Azhwar’s practice to go across fields, muddy lands and canals  during his times and as a mark of respect the procession goes in the similar fashion and that practice is followed even today.

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It was a very thrilling experience. Around 8-10  bhagavathas  were shouldering the palanquin and by seeing the speed in which the procession was taken, Adiyen thought they may  drop the palanquin.

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But  was corrected about my misconception by other bhagavathas that such incidents do not happen and Azhwar enjoys the procession to be taken in this way.  Adiyen decided to accompany the procession in the damp fields along with the  bhagavathas   though was bit apprehensive about slipping in the  green fields .

Adiyen never ever felt that we were in the fields  .

We along with  Azhwar cross the agricultural fields, (keni kattu), canals etc.  One young devotee was sharing his experience that the local people request the procession to be taken across their fields because they strongly believe that  Azhwars mercy on them will  have a good yield if the procession goes from their fields.

??????????????????????????????? It takes about half a day for our  Azhwar to cover these 5 temples. After  inviting the Perumals in these five divyadesams  it is almost the next day afternoon .

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Now our  Azhwar proceeds  to the banks of Manikarnikarai  

  ( tributary of the river cauvery )

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On the banks of the canal, Azhwar does mangalasaasanam to his  Acharyar , Sri Naraiyur Nambi Perumal (Naachiyar kovil, Kumbakonam) who personally  initiated him into Vaishnavism and mangalasaasanam to his favourite Perumal, Sri Ranganathar .  The Divyaprabhanda pasurams takes you literally to the divyadesam along with Azhwar .

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An interesting happening takes place .The Priests along with bhgavathas  stood in knee deep water reciting  pasurams on LORD Thirunaraiyur Nambi and Sri Ranganathar. Our  Azhwar takes  a quick dip in the canal . Along with the Azhwar,  all the devotees also had a holy dip.

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One devotee informed that  Azhwar, when he  was the chief ,he  used to have bath in these waters for refreshing himself after he returned from his looting expedition. Hence, the  old practice of having holy dip in the Manikarnikai waters is still followed even today. 

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Azhwar is now honoured with garlands and peethambarams which were adorned by the two Perumals of the divya desams previously. These gifts are  specially brought from Kumbakonam and Srirangam with due temple honours. Now our Azhwar proceeds to  a nearby old mandapam well decorated  for Manjal Neeratam..

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..Thirumanjanam ( Abhiskekam)  was performed to  SINDANAIKU INIYAN ( one who is sweet for contemplating ) who accompanies Azhwar during the entire procession ( deities worshipped by Thirumangai Azhwar himself),

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Thirumangai Azhwar and Kumudavalli Thayar. It is very interesting to note that Azwar is never separated from Thayar except on one occasion i.e. during THIRUVEDUPURI UTSAVAM celebrated  during  Panguni Uthiram day every year in April. Only during this occasion, Azhwar leaves Kumudavalli Thayar alone for a span of 3-4 hours as he goes to rob  Perumal’s properties and eventually transforms to become HIS only property .

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We are now in the Mandapam premises . A sahsradhaara plate where the Azhwar deities are honoured with a holy bath .

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The beauty is during Abhishekam ( Thiurmanjanam)   to Lord Sindanaiku Iniyan the remnants holy water / milk/ honey /curd  flows through the Sahasradhaaram on Thirumangai Azhwar and Kumudavalli’s  who are underneath LORDS LOTUS FEET

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Its a great bhagyam to have darisanam of Azhwar when the holy water of his deities is allowed to bathe the divine couple who have showed us the path of surrender to our only LORD SRIMAN NARAYANA.

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Adiyen was fully charged amongst the bhagavathas .

Few  senior bhagavathas sang Azhwars Pasurams with some dancing to the tunes .

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Overall the festive atmosphere infused more and more bhakthi and adiyen found there was some special attraction in our Azhwars bewitching smile .

MVI_0096 Reflecting on Azhwars pastimes adiyen reclined at the mandapam premises sometimes with tearful eyes thanking Azhwar and Asmath Acharyar for blessing me to be among this wonderful devotees who are in  the trance of HARINAAM all the while  .

???????????????????????????????At about 6 P.M., Azhwar reaches Thirumanimada kovil popularly known as Narayana Perumal kovil. It is here that 11 Garuda sevai is performed. The garuda vahanams of all Perumals are kept here in designated mandapams.

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Azhwar is greeted as usual and pasurams comprising of Thirupallandu, Kanninunsiruthambhu, respective pasuram from Peria Thirumozhi are recited followed by neivedyam, saatrumarai and vaazhi thirunaamam. Azhwar then visits Thiruvanpurushothaman kovil where professional musicians entertain Azhwar by exhibiting their talent in playing nadaswaram and mrudangam . 9o After mangalasaasanam, Azhwar visits Manavaala maamunigal sannidhi in the temple precincts. Azhwar was one of the favourites for Manavala mamunigal mamunigal organizes the 11 garuda seva on the following day. We were offered prasadam  , panchaamrutham, chakarai pongal etc  sumptously .

The Manjal Neeratam is still fresh in our minds. May Azhwar bless us by giving us  many many more oppurtunities to be amongst his devotees  It was almost  3 P.M now . As per the plan , the procession  re started. Azhwar now marches to THIRUMANIMADAKOVIL , THIRUNAGARI  and glorifies the Perumals to grace the function the next day .

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Prasadam is offered at every Divyadesam to the devotees .

Now our  Azhwar proceeds to 

THIRUVANPURUSHOTHAM KOVIL ,

THIRUVAIKUNTAVINNAGRAM

 THIRUSEM PON SEI KOVIL

THIRUTHETRIAMBALAM

THIRUARIMEYAVINNAGARAM

and finally awaits for all Perumals to grace him at THIRUMANIMADA KOVIL

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  and following the same custom of reciting the divyaprabhanda pasurams  glorified by  Azhwar at the respective divya desams.

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We were overjoyed to be among  a sea of devotees and managed to take rest in open area and  moved to the premises of  Srinivasa Perumal kovil more popularly known as “Annan Kovil “ and  passed the night at temple along with devotees .

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The next day morning, all of us assembled at Thirumanimada kovil for participating in  the most awaited  11 GARUDA SEVA.

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Adiyen took this small oppurtunity to have darisanam of  Anann kovil,, Thirupaarthanpalli, Thiruvaali-Thirunagari before proceeding to attend the Eleven Garuda sevai  . Offering repeated obesiances to our Azhwar in  Thirunagari temple. The temple itself is very big. The  deity of Thirumangai Azhwar along with Kumudavalli Thayar is eye captivating.

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It makes one recollect   Acharyar Manavala mamuni’s thaniyan . 

Azhwar’s lips are slightly opened as if they are uttering THIRUMANTRAM.

Azhwar is seen holding THIRUMADAL in one hand and has  a spear with him.

Azhwar is seen wearing anklet.

This anklet and Vel were given as gifts to the Azhwar when he won in a contest about Vaishnavism with a advanced saiva devotee Thirugyanasambandhar .

THE PREPARATION FOR ELEVEN GARUDA SEVAI BEGINS

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From 10 A.M. onwards we can have darhanam of  divya desa Perumals from each temple who accept the Invitation of Azhwar  We are able to observe  a  big pandal  erected for the Perumals.

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The Perumals  arrive  in their respective palanquins with mangalashanams . Now we race towards  Thirumanimadakovil at 14 hours.  We take darshanam of  almost  Seven Perumals who  had arrived

. AnnanPerumal Vanpurushothaman Kudamadumkoothar MadhavaPerumal Narayanan Pallikondaperumal

Almost by  4 P.M. all Perumals from 11 divya desams arrive and take the  gaurd of honour from our Azhwar  as our  Azhwar arrives to recieve our most reverred guest of the wonderful seva  from Thirumanimada kovil for receiving the Perumals.

Our  Azhwar  awaits  near the entrance of the temple.  Acharyar Manavala maamuni  awaits facing  our Azhwar.

, 7655 Swamy Manavalamaamuni was very fond of Thirumangai Azhwar and he , as a disciple supervises this grand Garuda  Utsavam . The place was over crowded but fortunately we could have a clear view of the proceedings and were able to have good darisanam . To enable the crowd to know about the proceedings, a big board was hung depicting the particular Perumal’s Thirunaamam, and Divya desam.

9900 Mangalasaasanam on the particular Perumal rendered by Thirumangai Alwar was recited and our  Azhwar does pradakshinam to Perumal.  Azhwar is  honoured  with parivattam and garlands previously worn by the Perumal as a blessing .

Our  Azhwar humbly bows down to  accept the  gifts given by respective Perumals from the divyadesams . Azhwar wears the garland given by Perumal and  adorns the parivattam .  Fruits etc are offered as neivedyam to  Perumal and then to Azhwar and later to  Swamy Manavala Mamumuni followed by  karpoora aarthi

. 12345 Now the honoured Perumal  gets inside the Thirumani mada kovil. An interesting feature noted was there was a separate troop of musicians who played naadaswaram, mela and thalam for each Divyadesam  Perumal.

9876 Finally Karpoora  mangala  haarthi with Poorna  khumbham is given. The sequence in which the mangalasaasanam  done to the Perumal  is as follows

9000 1) THIRUNARAYANA PERUMAL OF THIRU MANIMADA KOVIL-   adorned  in white colour dress .

2) KUDAMAADU KOOTHAR PERUMAL OF THIRU ARIMEYA VINNAGARAM-  adorned in blue colour dress

3) SRI LAKSHMI RANGANATHAR OF SEM PON SEI KOVIL

4) SRI SRINIVASA PERUMAL OF ANNAN KOVIL (palanquin covered with blue and meron velvette cloth)

5) SRI PURUSHOTHAMAN OF THIRUVANPURUSHOTHAM (dressed in white and grey)- palanquin covered with green cloth (Note: All the palanquins were covered with cloth with sankhu, chakram and Thiruman embedded on it)

6) SRI VARADARAJA PERUMAL OF THIRUMANIKOODAM (silver crown, holding mace, dressed in blue and red –palanquin covered with white cloth)

7) SRI VAIKUNTANATHAR OF THIRUVAIKUNTAM ( Adiseshan seen as umbrella for Perumal, blue and red colour cloth covered over the palanquin) (The alankaranam for all the Perumals are  fantastic)

8) SRI MADHAVA PERUMAL OF THIRUDEVANARTHOGAI (meron colour kreetam-dressed in yellow and red )

9) SRI PARTHASARATHY PERUMAL OF THIRUPAARTHANPALLI (dressed in printed silk cloth-silver umbrella –Maragadham visible on Perumal’s Thirumaarbhu-red colour palanquin

10) SRI RAJAGOPALAN of THIRUKAVALAMPAADI (dressed in pink and blue coloured silk cloth-red coloured palanquin)

765 During circumbulation  to  LORD Sri Rajagopalan  Azhwar  majestically circumbalates   amidsts  the  enchanting Nadaswaram  ( Nagin music) . After all the Perumals take leave ,  Swami Manavala mamuni does pradakshinam to Azhwar amidst the background nadaswaram playing  style and the Azhwar along with  swami Manavala mamuni enter the temple. The reception  function takes place for about 2 hours. Around 5PM  inside the temple,  we can have darshanam of each Perumal  who have a separate  chamber  and  ( Abhishekam ) Thirumanjanam to all the Perumals and Azhwar is performed in Ekantam ( private) . After the Maha Abhisheskam ,  all the Perumals are adorned with wonderful ornaments and flowers .The Garuda vahanam is also adorned with flowers and other paranphalia . We had darishnam of all the Perumals and seeked their grace in  having satsangh always

. 345 Around  11 P.M. , the Garuda seva starts.  We quickly come out of the temple and eagerly await to have the Garuda seva darshanam of all the Perumals . We observe the moment the main door opens our  Acharyar Swamy  Manavala mamuni  followed by Thirumangai Azhwar and Kumudavalli Thayar seated on hamsa vahanam  arrive much to the joy of the devotees .    Swamy Manavaala mamunigal in his parangi naarkali vahanam  comes out first and receives Azhwar seated on Hamsa vahanam. One by one all the  Divya desam Perumals arrive in Garuda vaahanams. Mangalasaasanam sung by Azhwar is recited and after due honours, the Perumal goes round the 4 mada streets..

14 Its a divine feeling to be amongst  a sea of srivaishnavas assembeled reciting the  Divya Prabhandam pasurams . Few devotees were distributing the pasurams books for others to follow and recite .  Now the Perumals on Garuda vahanam grace  Azhwar and the devotees who are eagerly waiting for his  darshan . and All the divya desa Perumals follow them. The procession winds its way through the four mada streets of Thirumanikoodam. It takes about 3 hours for all the Perumals to complete the oorvalam. All the Perumals assemble in front of Thiurumanimaada kovil. Azhwar thanks all the Perumals for having blessed all the sinners like us with their Divine Grace.  Swamy Manavala mamuni’s saatrumarai takes place later and  all the Perumals enter into the temple.  On the way to Thirunagari, Azhwar  proceeds to Sri  Annan Kovil, Madhava Perumal kovil (Thirudevanarthogai), Thiruvaali and Thirunagari divya desams

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On the third day, after all the divyadesa Perumals leave to their respective divyadesams, Azhwar also leaves Manimada kovil.. On the way he visits Annan Kovil where he is received grandly as he is considered as their “Maapillai”(son-in-law”). Finally Azhwar reaches Thirunagari where Vayalaali Manavalan-the presiding diety of Thiruvali-Thirunagari temple waits near the entrance on Garuda Vaahanam to welcome Azhwar . Perumal and Azhwar then enter into the temple together. This marks the end of the three day festivities at Thirunangoor which is celebrated for more than 140 years. Adiyen with tears submit to the  divine will of  Azhwar and Almighty who graced us tohave the darishna bhagyam amongst several devotees .

What else does a soul needs except HIS cool benovalent grace always to be among Haribhaktaas………..

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Nadu nagaramum NAMO NARAYANA enru ..

Thats the final prayer LORD ..

Adiyen seeks his mercy to be HIS always …

Please forgive adiyen for any slips in glorifying and describing the great festival .

Adiyen Ramanuja dasan

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The Highest transcendental truth… “Just become an instrument…… “nimitta mattram bhava savyassaachin mayaivaite nihataah poorvameva…..


 This  whole world is moving according to the plan of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.  There is a specific plan being carried out in this material world. What is this plan? The cosmic manifestation is a chance for the elevated souls to go back to Godhead. . 



As they overcome the  material nature, they  slowly get  conditioned. One who  can understand the plan of the Supreme Lord and cultivate Krsna consciousness   gradually becomes intelligent.


 He slowly realises the creation and destruction of the cosmic manifestation are under the superior guidance of Lord .

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 The Battle of Kuruksetra was fought according to the plan of LORD . Arjuna was refusing to fight, but he was told that he should fight and at the same time  desire the Supreme Lord 


Lord Sri Krishna in the Bhagavad Gita, the Song Celestial, tells his dearest friend and disciple, Arjuna, “Nimitta matram Bhava Savyasachi”.


You just become an instrument.


So the man of God feels in the inmost recesses of his heart that he is a mere instrument. He works for God, he lives for God.

He feels that God Realisation is not enough.

He feels that God Manifestation here on earth is of paramount importance.

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One divine pastime  chronicled as  Azhwar’s musings is being shared for a vivid description of a jiva seeking Lord’s lotus feet ….

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The youngest Azhwar among the illustrious revered twelve Srivaishnava  Azhwars was Thirumangai Azhwar He was also glorified with the names  Kalivarimuni ,

Parakalamuni and had a title “Kaviloka divaakarah” .. ( the sun of the world of poets ) as glorified below …

kalayaami kalidhvamsam

kaviloka divakaram

yasyagobhih prakaasaabhih

aavidyam nihatam tamah …

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The magnum opus “Periya Thirumozhi” consisting of 1080 pasurams in the Naalayira Divya Prabhandam speaks about Azhwar’s deep love to Lord .

The below post describes about Azhwars past and his attraction to LORD in his later life ..Please click the link below and relish your souls thirst with Azhwar’s divine experiences ..

https://kmkvaradhan.wordpress.com/2015/03/23/the-divine-loot-by-azhwar-at-seerkazhee-in-tamilnadu/

https://kmkvaradhan.wordpress.com/2014/04/16/the-grand-day-when-azhwar-got-thirumantra-upadesam/

https://kmkvaradhan.wordpress.com/2014/04/13/vedipuri-utsavam-thirumanthra-upadesam-to-azhwar/

The supremely devoted Azhwar after having darshan of the  Sri vaishnava divyadesams  by glorifying the Lordships in every divya desam  was pondering about his position ..

Though his mission was accomplished in uplifting the fallen souls in seeking Lord’s lotus feet unconditionally thus surrendering  to the only HIM the Supreme Lord Sriman Narayana ,

Azhwar had some musings for not able to obtain immediate results.

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Azhwar became anxious and perplexed as how much longer he would have to bear his karma and when would he attain the bliss of emancipation.

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He had a unexplained  fear whether LORD would continue to keep him in the material world all together .In this perplexed mood he entered into a casual discussion with Lord of the Lords Sriman Narayana ..

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Looking at the Lord !! he laments ,

KALIYAN

Oh My Master !!      you had pushed me away ..far far away ..by throwing me long long long ago in a  bottomless pit  full of material and mire in this world …


 Oh Lord !!! Am I not yours like the Nitya muktas .

Am I stranger to your highness ?

Devareer could have kept me amongst the Nitya surees for serving your highness …

govindaa

Azhwar submits …

It is  described in Srimad Bhagavatham

Na me dveshyosti na priyah

You declared no one in particular is beloved to you and neither you hate any one .


It is  also declared Samoham Sarva bhuteshu and look upon everyone equally ….and announced the supremely pure Jiva is like a kausthubha jewel that is effulgent with knowledge bliss …

 

Oh ! Lord does this give you any happiness seeing your children suffering in this infected material world ?

You have thrown me in this muddy samsara …a bottomless pit …

govindaa

Lord  with compassion replies !! with a bewitching smile …

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Oh Parakala muni ……………….

Am I cause for your difficulties ? which……

you invited due to various sins committed by you in different lives you have taken since immemorial..


My child …   Yes!

I appeared several times and taken various incarnations to punish the evil doers  and reward the one who did virtuous deeds .

I took all the pain in seeing that people like you are uplifted ..

But am sad ..you never ever sought me and preferred to be Independent .

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Never you showed inclination towards me ..

You evaded and avoided me and slowly moved  away from me  as if you had taken a vow that you would not see , hear , speak and seek me at all.

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You were always seeking material pleasures and thus enjoyed the ephemeral worldly pleasures and indulged in sinful  deeds.  entertaining  hatred every moment towards my devotees ,

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My Child ….

You are therefore ..

cause for the succession of sorrows which have chased  you for the gross misdeeds.

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Kaliyan … Now don’t  impute me for your misdeeds .

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Azhwar humbly responded …..

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Oh Lord !!

The Mind is the cause for a person to entertain a desire or wish in favor of a particular object and this crazy mind is under YOUR control ..

as you declared in SBG……

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Sarvasya chaaham hridi samnishtah.”

As HRISHIKESHA you are the cause of the good and bad thoughts …

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Azhwars have proclaimed

Ennaitheemanam Keduthathaai

and YOU alone have ensured that my mind is diverted from the evil thoughts which forces me to commit these sins

..Maruvithozhum maname thandhaai…

Oh ! Lord !!

This mind you gave me which with love seeks your refugee ……………………….

and you gave this sinful mind ..

and then threw me in this ocean of samsara


..Lord !! Please show compassion and uplift me ..

Lord once again smiles and replies…………..

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Oh Parakaala muni …My child …

From time immemorial ….

You never sought me .

To attain specific fruits and get rid of difficulties you had performed certain yagas and yagynas and seeked fruits .


You overlooked me.

With that faith you had overlooked me and thus you had several succession of lives doing good and bad deeds thus falling in the unending cycle of karmas in this samsara .

Now tell me ..

How can I be a part of your sins ?

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Azhwar shakes up and with moist eyes .

He continues to plead ..

Oh Lord !!

Please don’t say that I  forgot you ..

I entertained the faith and trust that some actions would give specific results and that therefore I had distanced from you my LORD out of ignorance …

What authority do I have to do good or bad karma .

.My Lord …


Lord !!

Being LORD of LORD’s ,

please do not put me in the karmic code of life .

For my own upliftment  please bear me ..

Lord !!

As per knowledgeable people what pleases you is a virtuous deed and that angers you is a sinful deed ……………

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annaadah vasudaanah…

Lord !!

This verse proclaims you decide the fruits of our  karma..

. In that case Lord !!

Can your grace not flow on us to do good karmas only ?

You are everything ..

Please exhibit that divine power by uplifting this fallen soul ..

Lord  with abundant mercy smiled….

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and said ..

Oh ! Azhwar ……

Are you an insentient being like a  stone or that rock …

You have knowledge,  a body and the senses .. With all these , You acted independently ..

You are the enjoyer

.. You seek .. 

You attain …

and

then you enjoy your might…………………………

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As a jiva you are supposed to use your Jnana to discriminate between good and bad .

In Spite of having  Jnana and the freedom to act independently you have yourself become the cause of your evil consequences


.Child ! I am of no fault at all ..

Azhwar  disappointed , once again pleads and begs LORD …

Lord ! You are Omnipotent and my Indweller ..

Yasya prithivee sariram

Yasyaatmaa sareeram

Sarvam vai karestanuh

Jagatsarvam sareerantey…

Lord !! Your entire body is this entire world …

Lord you enter matter in a very subtle manner and then you take control of this matter in the same way which Jiva controls or conduct the decaying body ..

For this entire matter……

Lord!!

you are the primary cause ….

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Just as a charioteer directs the horses which draw the chariot ………

I act only as per the directions given by you and…..

If you oppose I cannot perform and become powerless

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Oh Lord !!

Is it not your gesture to look after your own child and this body  is of that Atma (Jiva) which belongs to you alone ..

and the protection of all the jivas like me  is Lord !

Your responsibility  as you are the nature of Eternal Atma

 

Lord !! In the Ashtakshara mantra it is proclaimed that there are nine types of connection which are with us and cannot be overlooked ..

Oh Lord !! Am shivering with fear as how much longer You who are Independent will push me into this abyss of samsara .Lord

………………..

fb_img_1472948421315.jpgPlease don’t make me a victim of your divine leela ,….

instead make me an instrument in your service

The discussion echoes an ordinary Jiva’s struggle and plight in emancipation .


Azhwar further  continues

Maattramula aagilum solluvan makkal

Thottrakkuzhi thottruvippaaikal Endru innam

Aaattrankarai vvzhmarampol anjugindren

Naattrachchuvai ooru oliyaagiya nambhi

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Oh Lord …

The taste , touch , vision etc which are seen in the earthly and the five elements are being indicated as the qualities which are in you ..

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You are the essence in water , sound in the sky , scent in the earth and in short sap and essence in everything..

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..Lord !! Nothing can exist without you ..

Oh Lord …

With all these  qualities that are substances which induce desire and hence creating problems that commits sins  thus forgetting you ,………………

Lord due to ignorance and mad illusion thus falling in this bottomless pit repeatedly ..

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We are just small puppets .

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Though you have given us the knowledge , the senses in this body are uncontrollable horses which have caused my befall Knowing fully well that the physical pleasures are ephemeral , temporary and very minute which leads to great difficulties that resulted in deep sorrow ..

yet like a drunken mad monkey this mind runs swiftly and this body is like a fruit full of worms which have already begun to eat me inside ..


Lord ………………

You pushed me into this deep pit with a noose called karma and punish me by giving this body which has full of worms ..

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As a tree which is on a bank of a rapidly flowing river fiercely cutting into the banks is all the time not knowing as and when the tree is washed out even my life is like that

...Lord !! Am trembling with fear now

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Lord out of abundant compassion and like a father who painfully tweaks the cheeks of a child and enjoys the cries thought …chuckles and thinks …

Umn !!

That’s true..

I allowed you to fall and that was for your own good ..

I have got rid of your atheistic beliefs and cruel conduct once for all


I taught you the Ashtaakshara mantraa

which made you sing Naan kandu kondain Naarayana ennum Naamam and made you aware of the True Knowledge ..

Its just a matter of few more years ..

I will accept and uplift him permanently .

.as  you have  to just accept  your Prarabhdha karmaa .

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Lord now replies pretending to be unhappy …

Oh Parakala Muni …

What is this unusual behaviour from you

..Its your Prarabhdha karma which is causing pain .

Have you forgotten your unbearable misdeeds and hatred towards my devotees ?


Why is this anxiety bothering you ..

If you can find any other person who can uplift you ………..Please carry on …

Azhwar immediately submits sobbing uncontrollably ..

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Oh Lord !!  

Am a insignificant being .

.Please forgive me ..

You are an ocean of compassion and abundant mercy ..

How could I ever imagine to get your benevolent grace ….

.

Please forgive me………………………

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Ashtaakshari is my only bread  butter and life force .

Lord !

I am suffering with unlimited anxiety for the fear that I may  be again pushed into this samsaara ..

Seetramula aagilum seppuvan makkall

Thottrakkuzhi thottruvippaikolendranchi

kaatrathidaippatta kalavar manam pol

Aattrathulangaanirppan Aazhivalvaa

Oh ! Lord adorning the  mighty Sudarshana chakram ,

Tell me…………

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Do you need the divine chakra ?

 ..In this entire creation there is NO ONE who can oppose your supremacy and cause difficulties

.Having the chakra is to protect people like me ..

All your weapons are for protecting your children……………………

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The totality of the evil deeds of any devotee will be obliterated by the Sudarshana chakra if only such devotee were to have the insignia of the chakra on his shoulders ,

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Oh Lord !! I am travelling in a boat which is caught in the middle of the ocean surrounded by  agitated waves due to the winds of passion ..Oh Lord !! Please pardon me …

Azhwar submits with unconditional surrender ..

Knowing LORD is eternal , he submits

 Lord  when  a  child who is full of mischief falls into a well , the entire world blames the mother  .though Mother is no way responsible  for the event …

A story used to be shared by our great revered Acharyar Swami Peria Vachan Pillai …

The great war of Mahabharatha concluded ..

The revered saint Udanka was upset .

He approached Lord Krishna and enquired 

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Lord …

You revealed Srimad Bhagavad Gita and said ..

..na me dveshyosthi na priyah …..

For you all were same .. 

You could have very well changed the minds of Kauravas thus preventing this catastrophe ….

oom

Lord was silent ..

These were the words

nimitta mattram bhava savyassaachin

mayaivaite nihataah poorvameva

LORD was speechless when Azhwar addressed him with this revelation..

Azhwar was special to LORD ..

he  earned his love for the devotion and  unconditional surrender…..

….. …………………………..

Many elevated souls  have realized this highest  transcendental truth…

.They do not care much for earthly good or evil. They care only for Lord’s inner dictates.

Constantly they listen to the dictates of their Inner Pilot

( The Lord as Antharyamee)  and then on the strength of their oneness,  the inseparable oneness with their Inner Pilot, they offer their selfless, dedicated service to humanity

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 They try to offer  divine knowledge to aspiring humanity.

Again, they tell humanity that Lord Realization is not their sole monopoly.

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 Everyone needs to  fulfill his  dharma on earth, fulfill the  duties, the reason why we are  here and then  hand our existence over to existence and let life itself play its tune on  us , the hollow bamboo flute. just let destiny fulfill itself through us , emptying our self of all the  selfish ego desires and illusions and  then realize the divine which is acting in us  through  in order to bring blessings and final up liftment

lord-krishna

 Adiyen Ramanuja dasan

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Inspired by a discourse shared by an advanced Spiritual guru…

Pics : Courtesy Google images

videos : Thanks to  Sri Balaji .M

Pillai Urangavilli Dasar the disciple of Swamy Ramanuja .. ..whose wisdom was blinded with deep love for the Supreme Lord.. a divine pastime


Pillai Uranga Villidasan  was  a favorite disciple to Swamy Ramanuja .He became very close to his Master so rare that was his piety  though belonged to a lower caste he had privileges conferred upon him .

The abundant compassion Jagath Acharyar Swamy Ramanuja had on Villidasan is presented in the  movie clip below .Click and relish the pastime before reading the appended pastime …

 

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Very often Swamy Ramanuja was seen returning from Kaveri leaning on the shoulders of Swamy MudaliAndaan and Villidasan  .

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A brahmana is unclean before bath and clean after a bath and the disciples watching were curious with their Masters way why they had not changed places while accompanying Swamy Ramanuja .

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They took courage to question their Master for an explanation.

Swamy condescended to them saying  , my children  !

Have you not heard that learning , riches and high birth swell a fool with pride , but adorn the wise man ?

 This  man our villidasan  is utterly destitute of this three fold vice but we are not .

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Hence he is fit enough to be touched by me  .

On hearing the golden words the disciples bent their head in shame and dared make any further  protest , but all the same malice kindled their minds against the favorite disciple Villidasan who was  a sudra and  more close to their master  than a Brahmin disciple could be  .

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They could not digest a sudra should stand so high to their masters estimation , as their own prestige as Brahmins was being jeopardized.

Srirangam Sri Ranganathaswamy Kovil
Srirangam Sri Ranganathaswamy Kovil

Swamy  Ramanuja was aware of the disciples  grudge towards the advanced devotee who was a gem among  all of them . 

As a true Master  he wanted to  convince the error  which is making them spiritually fatal .

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He devised a plan  and hence called a close disciple in private  and ordered him to secrete  all the clothes of the  disciples  in the night  when they were fast asleep. ( these were the clothes which are washed  and hanged high to be dried up ) .

The task was accomplished .

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The next day all the disciples were aghast with the missing of their daily wear . Each one was accusing the other and the entire scene turned into chaos.  

They were calling names  against each other .

Swamy Ramanuja walked into the chambers hearing the unusual noise . All the disciples vented their anguish about the missing clothes .

Swamy Ramanuja  calmed them and advised them to accept the same as Lords providence . Alternate arrangements were made .

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Days passed , Villidasan who was living near to the Ashram  was serving Acharyar with utmost devotion .

One day it got delayed  as Villidasar  was entrusted some jobs for some festival .

Swamy Ramanuja walked into the disciples chamber and told them that they all must go to Villidasars house located few  metres away and make an attempt to rob the precious jewellery and other ornaments from Ponnachee his wife  when she is asleep.  

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All of them knew Villidasar was a rich person and had gifted many golden jewellary to his wife Ponnachee  in the past on several occasions and she was always bedecked with the ornaments .

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 It was decided that they need to rob the jewels when Villidasar was serving Swamy Ramanuja  in the ashram .

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The disciples were very happy . All of them marched hurriedly to Villidasars house .They could see Ponnachee fast asleep .

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Ponnachi was sleeping on the floor of the hut using her hand as a pillow.  She was bedecked with wonderful gold jewelry The moment one of the disciples bent down to unhook her ear-ring, she woke up.  

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Without any inhibitions they waited  , collected all the jewellery from the chest  and attempted to  remove the jewellery worn by her during her sleep  once again .

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 But , Ponnachee  recognised the disciples and did not want to startle him.  She thought ,when  Swamy Ramanuja’s disciple committed such an act of theft it must have a divine sanction .

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She then laid still and allowed them remove the ear-rings, bangles and the nose-ring she was wearing on the left side of her body.   

She felt they were taking away their own property  for whatever effects she owned in this world were not really hers but entrusted to her for their sake .

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This is how Property is to be spiritually viewed . She gently rolled over for them to strip the other side of the jewellery she was wearing . 

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She was anxious that the vaishnavas should complete their work and not go away with half work done . But her  movement however created a fright  and put the disciples  on their toes to leave the place .

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The vaishnavas returned to the ashrama  .Pillai dasar after completing all the works assigned  to him submits his humble  prayers to Acharya and takes leave .   Meanwhile , the disciples  entered the ashram  and explain the happenings at Villidasars house in detail to Acharyar.

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Swamy Ramanujar  orders  them to follow Villidasar immediately  up to his house and watch all that might take place in the house . The disciples quickly left the jewellery  in Ashram and followed him in the dark .

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In the house Ponnachee was eagerly waiting for her husband  as done daily.When she heard the footsteps  of Villidasar , she hurriedly went to the entrance and  welcomed him  .She washed his feet with all affection  .

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Villidasar  looked at her very strangely as she had decked jewellery one sided only.  

He said , What is this lady ??  taken aback with her strange dress sense .

 Nothing My Lord she replied  soothingly  .

I shall explain you in detail ……..

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Please honor the prasada quickly as it is already too late  .

She continued   about the incident  that happened few minutes back .

 She pleasingly said that the  vaishnavas who are our gurus had come to our house just now   my dear …..while I was lying asleep.

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  May be they were in need of their jewels .I could hear them whisper that I was asleep and It was the right time to  take the jewellery .

Lying down hearing their whisper , I pretended to be fast asleep so that they could complete their task .  

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They  laid hands on me and took all the jewels from my right side as the left  side was visible .

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Our effects are theirs  as you know  , so to let them have all , I quietly turned around my right  side  with all my care doing so  to make them believe that I was really fast asleep, but my bad luck it some how gave them a alarm and to my utter regret  they left without completing the job they had come for .  

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On hearing this Pillai urangi got upset and was angry with her . He said ..Hey Foolish woman !!!    you have spoiled the great opportunity to serve the vaishnavas .

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You must have laid motionless till their work is completed …. …..

.If the jewels were theirs Its their wish to take them as they like . I am really very upset with your behaviour…… 

He said half the jewels  have been best invested , the remaining are vanity  .

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 The vaishnavas were observing the conversation behind the doors .

They hurriedly left back to Ashrama  and gave a full report of the conversation .

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Swamy Ramanuja the Acharyar  now spoke to his disciples and  asked them to remain awake. He then instructed them to wake up all the other disciples.

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All of them should clean themselves and assemble before the Acharya for an important lesson. Eager to hear new lessons from the Acharya, they all gathered around him in no time.

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Suddenly from no where  Villidasan ran into the mutt with his wife . He fell down at the Acharya’s feet like an uprooted tree. He and his wife  Ponnachee were with tears  .  The other disciples were stunned at the unusual sight. They had never seen Villidasan crying so much.

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“We have committed a grace sin  Acharya.

We have together  sinned.

We are no longer fit to be your disciples.

Condemn us to the worst of hells; even then the retribution will not be
adequate.” cried Villidasan..

“What happened, my child? Why are you crying?

Why is your wife crying?”

Swamy Ramanuja  asked the devotee disciple ..

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Acharya   “Some of your learned disciples had come into our hut today to take my wife’s jewels.

She was sleeping.

Your disciples took the trouble of removing the jewels from her person themselves. Ponnachi did not want to startle them by waking up all of a sudden.

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When she turned the other side so that they can remove those jewels also, they just ran away.  

“Acharya,

I am not even fit to be a dust in the feet of those learned disciples.

Aren’t you called the Udaiyavar?

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Doesn’t that mean that all of us,all our belongings, properties and everything belong to you?

When you sent your men to take your things,   Ponnachi should have welcomed them and should have given them whatever she had.

She has sinned, My Lord. “And I have sinned too. Please  curse us  a punishment .

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My wife has decided not to wear jewels on the one side of her body for the rest of her life.” for the grave sin committed ….

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You  showed LORD  to me.

And I could not even give some worthless piece of yellow metal to you, when you needed it!

What a sinner I am!

There is no hope for me, there is no salvation for me!”he was uncontrollable ….

Swamy Ramanuja turned to his other disciples.

Please tell me whose wisdom is  better , great yours or his ?

Please know that caste is of no importance..

It is the virtue that is most important and prized .

This is why I say ….

 Even River Cauvery cannot clean me completely.

But this man’s touch can purify me.

That’s why I lean on him when I return from the river.

Villi,  my child ….. please teach these people how to love.”

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The disciple who first complained to Ramanuja about Villidasan  prostrated  to him  and Ponnachi’s feet begging their pardon.

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Swamy Ramanuja then returned the jewels to Ponnachi and commanded her to wear them then and there.

And also ordered that she should never be without those jewels.

The silence that reigned  in the Ashram was pregnant with many lessons, many teachings
and many leanings….

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It is told that Villidasan was called as Mahamati  (  a human wiser than wisdom ) the wisdom blinded by love for Lord .

He was love blind as to fear any danger for one who is above all dangers .

Mahamati  used to walk   with his sword drawn in front of the Lord so that he may stop anyone who dared to do any act in the least offensive to the Lord of Lords………………..

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More details about this great disciple can be read in this post linked below :

https://kmkvaradhan.wordpress.com/2015/01/12/the-wrestler-who-surrendered-to-the-most-beautiful-eyes/

True !!!   Bhaagavatha apachAram is worse than BhagavathapachAram

Sri.Pillai Uranga Villidasar thiru adigale sharanam.

 

hey kr

 

Pics  Courtesy : Google images , anudinam

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