…….The Unconditional surrender …..

Swamy  Parasara Bhattar, the famous acharya   in Srivaishnavam  Sampradaya was the eldest son of Swami  Koorathazhvan. .   Bhattar  was  the chief priest  at Srirangam temple and  appeared  out of the grace of the Lord of Srirangam. 

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 Swami parASara bhaTTar  appeared  in this world through the divine aravanai prasadam (the prasadam that is offered to the Lord just before the nightly closing of the temple) of Namperumal, which was offered to Andal, the wife of swami Kurathazhvan.

Not only by birth did swami bhattar, as he is addressed by all, show his greatness, but also by his  sharp intelligence, kind actions and  inspiring  spiritual  practices throughout his life.

Parasara Bhattar

 A toughest  enemy would also  adore Bhattar on listening to him.  Bhattar’s  skill in answering a person’s question even before the questioner has finished asking the question was  marvelous, and offers food for our thoughts  , thus pondering the filthy mind which  always rests in the ocean of egoistic approach .

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Two divine pastimes mentioned below awakens one to work on our approach and seek Lord’s lotus feet unconditionally .

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Once Bhattar went to a  temple with his disciples to worship his beloved Lord Ranganatha . Unfortunately, the shrine was closed to the general public. In those times, the closing of the shrine to the public was usually expressed through a divine servant shouting out the words “netrapaani, netrapaani”.

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While this was happening, swami Bhattar was inside the enclosure created by the screen that separates namperumAL’s shrine and the outside.

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One of the close servants  in the temple , without knowing the divine closeness of Bhattar with  Lord Namperumal, shouted at Bhattar and uttered inappropriate words  much to the surprise of the crowd ,

Bhattar simply smiled at him.  but , the  disciples of Bhattar  couldnt accept and hence started to shout back at  the person .

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 Bhattar   looked at  his disciples and  politely asked them “Why are you taking revenge at me?”

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The disciples were  shocked and  taken aback,. They were confused on hearing these  unusual words from  their guru Bhattar. One of the disciples, with a bit of courage, asked Bhattar “Swami, we are not taking revenge at you, but only at the person who inappropriately,  misbehaved  at you”.

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 Bhattar explained to them “The person at whom you are shouting has done a great favour to me . And by shouting at him, you are showing ungratefulness and are becoming a nuisance to him by shouting at him”.

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All the disciples were stunned; Bhattar simply continued – “It is the duty of every Sri Vaishnava, while worshipping the Lord, to  speak out his own bad qualities  and the Lord’s kalyana guNas.

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Our Namperumal is very busy with so many utsavams and does not find enough time to listen to my  bad qualities  which are innumerable to be told completely.

 

Given that this is the case, this swami  serving the LORD has indirectly  helped me and has taken up my task in his shoulder and put forth  the bad qualities   of me before the Lord and the Lord is also very pleased to hear.

Why are you disturbing him from doing a favor to me?”

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  Swami Parasara bhattar,  simply smiled at that  person who committed the slip , took one valuable necklaces from his neck, and offered it to that swami and told him “Swami –

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Even though this will not equal the favor done by you for me, it is my humble offering to you”.Please keep it with you …

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 Once Swamy was proceeding to attend a festival in nearby temple away from Srirangam . He had to walk into deep bushes .   En route   he met a hunter.  The hunter was spellbound looking at Bhattars composure and tejas . He immediately offered obesiances  to Swamys lotus feet  and offered  a seat to Swamin . Srivaishnava acharyas had  the unique trait of looking at everyone with  respect and hence Bhattar also made him sit along with him . 

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A srivaishnava is  a person who  never cast anyone as low or high by how he looks or where he lives.

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The instinctive prejudice that has diseased the society was never in their midst and hence the respect and love from the common folk was visible .

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 Having taken his seat, Swamy, with his usual inquisitiveness, asked  the hunter of the daily routine in and  around the forest. The hunter  was excited to have the audience of  the distinguished seer and sharing dais with his holiness .

He mentally rehearsed what  he can  reveal and decided to tell a strange  incident that he came across . 

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He  humbly  said  ..

“Swamy, a few days back, I did not get food throughout the day.  Due to pangs of hunger ,  

I decided to find food at any cost and headed towards a rabbit habitat.  I  was overjoyed when I found a little baby rabbit . 

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Holding it by the ears, I  started walking home. Having walked a few steps, I sensed something nibbling at my feet. To my surprise, I found the mother of this rabbit  was at my feet. Its behavior was very strange.

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It kept nibbling at my toes and quickly ran around my feet and came back to the toes. This kept  on happening for some time and I couldn’t put a foot forward. 

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A strange feeling  entered  in my heart.  Feeling pity  at the behavior of the Mother rabbit 

I suppose , my heart felt for the little one and her mother……

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  My mind stubbornly directed me to make my supper with the rabbit  BUT  my heart  overruled  the mind and demanded the release of the little rabbit.

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I was  overcome with compassion and remorse that I put down the child rabbit. Both the rabbits went around me a couple of times and  merrily jumped may be  blessing me  for letting them go safely .

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And to my surprise, this feeling overpowered my hunger and I was feeling my stomach seemed full.

RabbitQ1MBJMThe Acharya listened to the entire narration with eyes wide open and exclaimed

Oh  Lord Ranga!  My Swamin ….

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How can we narrow down the concept of Surrender  to a certain set of rules?

  This small incident  where  a  man devoid of any shastric learning melts down to the surrender of a rabbit and forgoes his hunger.

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A rabbit, absolutely devoid of any sort of tatva gnyanam instinctively surrenders at the feet of the hunter and seeks the release of its child!

How can  unconditional surrender have stringent rules?

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It is a simple yet highly effective concept for  the mankind to  learn   from the rabbit to surrender  seeking Lords Lotus Feet  unconditionally .

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 Adiyen Ramanuja dasan

Pics credits : Google images uploaded by several advanced devotees

 

 

Thank you very much for your valuable time reading the divine pastime. Please let us know your opinion for any improvements .kazhiyur varadan

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