Swami Srisailesar appeared in a illustrious village kunthinagaram near Madurai. His parents named him as “Thirumalai azhwaar”.
A very intelligent and highly talented young lad who assimilated all types of knowledge including administration with dedication was loved by one and all . He had samashrayanam (initiation ) done from his Acharyar Swamy Pillai Lokacharyar and was given a name as Satagopa dasar.
Those were the times when the illustrious Pandyan Kings were ruling Madurai. King Kulasekhara Pandyan had two sons Sundara Pandyan and Veera Pandyan.
Contrary to tradition, the king proclaimed that his younger son would succeed him. Sundara Pandyan was agitated and by a coup occupied the throne .
The local chieftains swore allegiance to younger brother Veera Pandian and thus a civil war broke out .
Sundara Pandyan was defeated and was forced out of the country. He sought help from Sultan Ala-ud-din Khilji who entrusted the task to General Malik Kafur to handle the problem .
With Sundara Pandyan’s assistance, the army entered Madurai and looted the city for their benefit . They plundered the wealth from all the temples .
The citizens were in fear and the threat of being killed by these ruthless invaders .
To their worst nightmare Sundhara Paandyan passed away . It was chaos all around the whole city of Madurai as the invaders looted the nearby areas and the people had to suffer in the enemy’s hands .
Sundhara Pandyan legal heir “Paraakrama Pandya” who was very young occupied the throne . It was a tough task managing the kingdom in such a deep crisis . As the prince was too young to take up the responsibilities , the queen requested the learned Swami Srisailesar to take care of the administration of the kingdom .
Swami Srisailesar understood it was need of the hour to protect the Kingdom. He took over the responsibilities as defacto King and as an able administrator was managing the show with long sighted acumen thus protecting the prince and the kingdom.
Years passed , Thirumalai azhwar was missing his favorite service of attending to the revered saints and Acharyas association in learning true knowledge . He developed deep interest in sampradayam and quenched his thirst by knowing several esoteric truths from scholars regularly by inviting them to the royal chambers .
Day by the day the thoughts to resign from the assignment given to him became stronger and love to the Lordships increased manifold. Over a period of time as things settled down , he decided to quit the job and seek Acharyar’s lotus feet once for all .
In the other part of the kingdom , Swamy Pillai lokacharyar instructed his chief disciple, Sri Koorakulothamadasar to enlighten Srisailesar by teaching our sampradayam who would be succeeding him in Acharya parampara.
(Similar to how Manakal nambi based on Nathamunigal’s instructions personally interacted with Yamunacharyar who was a king and taught him about our sampradaya and made him a prominent Vaishnava acharyar) .
Due to his advanced age, Sri Pillai Lokacharyar attained Acharyar’s lotus feet ( leaving his mortal coils at Jyotishkudi near Madurai .
( The divine pastime is appended in the blog post url ..
During the plundering expedition of Malik Kafur, one of the worst period in Srirangam, Sri Pillailokacharyar’s disciples took our adorable Lord Azhagiya Manavalan ( Namperumal ) to Thenaikidambai, a village near Kozhikode, Kerala from Jyotishkudi after Swamy PillaiLokacharyar’s heavenly sojourn.
In other part of the Kingdom , due to the invaders torture ,parallel y to protect saint Nammazhwar’s deity , few devotees from Azhwar Thirunagari carried the Lordships and reached this place carrying swamy Nammazhwar…
May be It was Lord’s arrangement !!!
Lord Namperumal and Swamy Nammazhwar met at this very holy place .What else can be the divine plan when both the Lord and his dearest devotee move out from their respective abodes and purify the nearby places by giving opportunities to his dearest disciples to carry them .
Nammazhwar was duly honored with Lord’s (Perumal’s parivatam) royal clothes , (kavacham made of pearls) . Both the teams discussed about the future plans in protecting the Lordships . They had to part ways for further safety .
From this holy place the disciples carried Lord Namperumal towards Melkote and later to Tirumala…..
Lord Ranganathar enjoyed the company of Lord Venkateshwara for almost 40 years .
We can have the darshan of the divine abode Of that mandapa where Lord Ranganathar stayed at Tirumala .
The devotees led by Swamy Thozhappar carried Swamy Nammazhwar diety and proceeded towards Kerala and halted at a place ” Munthirupu” .
The revered Acharyar Thozhappar was carrying out the divine service for months traveling avoiding eye contact with the ruthless invaders carefully avoiding the army who were looting the temples and the Priests .
As it was too hectic and difficult to face the invaders they carefully had Azhwar’s diety put inside a well covered box hid the same in a valley.
In the tough task being carried out by the team , Thozhapar attained Acharyar’s lotus feet .
With no other option left out , the disciples slowly proceeded towards Madurai to seek Srisailesar’s help in safeguarding the deity .
At Madhurai , Srisailesar by Azhwar’s grace, was now detached from the royal affairs Srisailer who had resigned from the ministerial post approached his Sri Koorakulothamadasa for receiving the instructions from Acharyar ….
As per Acharyar Swamy Pillailokacharyar’s orders and Koorakulothamadasar’s instructions, Srisailer approached Swamy Pillailokacharyar disciples.
As similar how Swamy Ramanujar approached five Acharyas , Srisailesar also approached .
Swamy Vilaancholai Pillai taught him the intricate meanings of Srivachana bhooshanam the magnum opus work by Swamy Pillai Lokacharyar at Thiruvananthapuram.
Swamy Thirukannangudi Pillai taught him the divine pasurams of Thiruvaimozhi .
Swamy Nalloor Pillai taught him the intricate meanings of 3000 vyakhyanam
Swamy Thiruputkuzhi Jeeyar taught him the intricate meanings Thiruvaimozhi
Nallooraachan pillai-the illustrious son of Nalloor pillai continued to teach him the meanings Eedu 36000 .
Thus another versatile Acharyar was guiding the sampradayam .
Thozhappar’s disciples reached Madurai and approached Srisailer .
The mission was divine . Srisailer was eager to have darshan of Azhwar .He along with the disciples proceeded to Munthirupu and located the valley .
With Azhwars grace , they were able to locate the deity .With all honors, the deity was safely kept at Thirukannambi.
Time passed quickly , and one fine day, Lord appeared in Srisailer’s dreams and advised ,
My dear Thirumalai aazhwar , the temple near Thirukurugoor is in a dilapidated condition which needs to be attended immediately .
He immediately started towards Thirukurugoor along with few disciples .Praying Lord for his mercy he started searching the village .
Somewhere far , he felt there could be Perumal sannidhi and Nammazhwar sannidhi.
But was not sure if he was at the right place. A barren and waste land nearby made him go closer . He was confused thoroughly because he did not even expect the place to be in such a poor condition.
He met the villagers and requested them to guide him in locating the temple of Azhwar and Perumal . The villagers were also in poor memory .They informed that due to the Moslem invasion in the Pandyan kingdom all of them were scattered and they were also cognizant of the poor state of azhwar and Perumal sannidhi.
They feared that due to invasion, the whole area became like a waste and barren land . One old villager came running and offering obesiances said ,
Revered swamin …….
From childhood I have been going to Azhwars temple for serving the Acharyas . I remember during the looting expedition by the invaders , the brahmins keeping the security of Swami Nammazhwar in mind, carried Lordships and Swamy Nammazhwar deity to a place in Kerala that was engulfed by forests.
I was told by my elders that they had kept azhwar’s vigraham in a cave in that forest. Srisailer was overjoyed . Thanking Swamy Nammazhwar for his mercy he proceeded to Thiruvananthapuram (capital city of Kerala) and approached the king there.
The King was kind to receive the saint . He ordered his minister to extend all the help to Srisailer . Using their help, he located the place where Swami Nammazhwar resided The place was called “Thirukanaambi”.
The entire group was overjoyed having darshan of Swamy Nammazhwar who was safely residing in a small box inside a valley . Glorifying the Lordships and Azhwar the group lead by Swamy Srisailer proceeded towards Thirukurugoor.
Now the task as allotted by Lord himself was taken up enthusiastically . All the villagers started to clear off the engulfed forest like area. One day ,while Srisailer was passing on pitch dark night, with a small lamp in his hand, he saw the ( Tamarind ) “Urangaapuli” tree and also the surrounding vimanam around it .
He was overjoyed . Realizing the importance of the holy place recollecting those divine pastimes of Swamy Nammazhwar and dear disciple Swamy Madhurakavi Azhwar, he called the villagers and explained the glory of the holy place . The mission was to make the divine place just like place it was during the heydays of Swamy Madhurakavi azhwar.
With the abundant grace of Ahzwar’s and Lord Polindha nindra piraan’s anugraham, the mission of renovating the temple was accomplished in grand scale .
Glad with the service of Srisailer’s services and his recitation along with nectarine explanation of Thiruvaaimozhi, Swami Nammazhwar himself christened the name of “Thiruvaaimozhi pillai”.
Now , Thiruvaaimozhi pillai started to revive all the lost and hidden traditions of the great place called “Thirukurugoor” ( “Aazhwar Thirunagari”). He took interest in educating the villagers.
With their active cooperation he got the forest area cleared and constructed a temple for Swamy Ramanujar who is worshipped as “Bhavishyad Acharyar” which is know glorified as Chaturvedi mangalam (called “Raamanuja chaturvedhi mangalam” ).
Thiruvaaimozhi Pillai used to contemplate on the divine pasurams of Thiruvaimozhi explanations always given in Eedu .
His attachment to Thiruvaimozhi was so much that he instructed his prominent disciple, Sri Manavala Mamunigal to always contemplate on Thiruvaimozhi .
Sri Azhagiya Manavala Perumal (Manavala mamunigal) belonged to Azhwar thirunagari and was direct disciple .He got his initiation from Srisailesar. Sri Azhagiya Manavala Perumal was Srisailesar’s favourite student who later on took sanyasam and came to be known as Swamy “Manavala Maamunigal” who rendered EEdu vyakhyanam in the presence of the processional deities in Srirangam (Azhagiya Manavalan/Namperuamal) for one full year .
The famous invocatory sloka rendered Supreme Lord Sriman Narayana residing as Sri Ranganathar in Srirangam which every Srivaishnava recites daily at the beginning and end of Thiruvaraadhanam starts with the words
SriSailesa Daya patram DhiBhakti Adi Gunarnavam
Yatindra pravanam Vande Ramyaja Mataram Munim
This invocatory verse was given to Swami Manavala maamunigal by Lord Ranganathar himself .
The Lord addresses Acharyar Mamunigal as “Srisailesa Dayaa paathram”-one who is the recipient of Srisailesa’s mercy.
Among-st the august gathering ,the Lord disguised as a boy came forward and gave the glorification verse (thanian.) ….through the Archaka .
He accepted Swamy Manavala Mamunigal as HIS acharyar. The Lord also gave HIS serpent bed, Adiseshan to Swamy Manavala Mamunigal as aasanam.
The kalakshepa mandapam in Manavala Mamunigal’s Thirumaligai at Srirangam is called as “Thiruvaimozhi Pillai mandapam”
Swamy Manavala Mamunigal in his wonderful work “Upadesa Ratnamala” starts the invocation verse ( thanian) as
“Yendhai Thiruvaimozhi Pillai Inn arulaal……”
He attributes everything to the lotus feet of his acharyar.
Upadesarathinamalai,’ has 74 verses.
As the name indicates it is a jewel of noble precept – gems, a treasure house of essential knowledge for Srivaishnavas. These verses are chanted by the congregation (goshti) in temples and all vaishnava homes .
Swamy Mamunigal states in the very first verse that these essential precepts were received by the grace of Thiruvoimozhi Pillai, his preceptor-Acharya.
After explaining an authoritative chronology of the appearance of revered Azhwars into this world with their appearance day details and places of birth, the hymn introduces the greatest of our acharyas, Swamy Ramanujar..
Elucidating further the commentaries by our acharyas on the hymns of the Azhwars, the importance of Nammazhwar’s Thiruvoimozhi is brought out by an enumeration of the five commentaries, of different lengths, that have appeared for these eleven hundred verses and how the ‘Eedu’ (36,000) commentary came to be written and propagated.More emphasis on the precious jewel, ‘Srivachana Bhushanam’ and the greatness of this ‘secret’ document is glorified .
The conclusion of this great treatise is that the grace of the preceptor-Acharya is the surest-gateway to salvation .
The sacred verses concludes that a reverent study of ‘Upadesarathinamalai’ is certain to beget the generous grace of Swamy Ramanuja.
The final (74) verse was an addition by Erumbiappa disciple of Swamy Mamuni that the fortunates heads who seek the holy feet (Sandals) of Sri Manavala Mamunigal are certain to be touched by Amanava at Srivaikuntam .
This contact would cleanse the emancipated soul of the last traces of karma and render it pure to enter the land of Bliss.
Adiyen Ramanuja dasan
Inspired from a discourse rendered by a revered Acharyar
Pictures : Courtesy Google images and the all the great devotees who had uploaded in various social media sites
The holy place Alwar Thirunagari is located in Tirunelveli district in Tamil Nadu…..
. Those were the days when our most respected Azhwar , Swami Nammazhwar was meditating near the southern banks of the holy Tambaraparani river .
There was a yogi who was staying near the northern bank of the same river along with his dog . The dog used to daily leave the northern bank of the river and reach southern bank .
It would eat the remnants of the food honored by the srivaishnavas near the temple . It would return daily by sun set back to wait near the tree along with the Yogi .This became a routine for the dog .
One day as usual the dog left in the morning but did not return as per the expected time . There was a change in weather and the weather was too cloudy for a heavy downpour . The yogi was feeling lonely without his company .
He went in search of his companion in the pouring rain .
He could see the dog which was swimming against the current and somehow he was not able to succeed .
In the struggle the dog had to leave his body .
The Yogi was amazed to see another event . The head burst out from the dog and a shining light emanated that was going upwards to the heavens .
This made the Yogi wonder about the holy place .
He observed that when a dog who just took the remnants of the pious sri vaishnavas could get salvation what can be told about this holy place where our Nammazhwar had graced this place with his divine darshan .
The great Sri Kamban azhwan had quoted this incident of the dog attaining moksha in his works Satagopar Anthadhee..
This incident of the dog attaining moksha is also sculpted in a stone on the banks of Tambaraparani river near Azhwar Theerthavari mandapam …
Blessed are those devotees who will be attending Swami Nammazhwars Apperance day at Thirukurugoor very soon .
Sri Kumudavalli sametha Thirumangai Azhwar Thiruvadigaley saranam
Sri Aravindavalli Nayika sametha Sri Badri Narayanaya namah :
—————————————————————— Saptha BAdri are a a group of seven temples dedicated to Lord Maha Vishnu which are located in the Garhwal Himalayas. (Some consider ARdha Badri as one of the Sapta Badri and omit Narsing Badri) . However , the entire Garhwal Himalayas are BhadriNarayana Kshetram. The area spreading from Satopanth 24 kms above Badrinath to Nand Prayag is known as Badri Kshetram as this area was once Badri vanam and as these temples of Lord Maha Vishnu are in this area, they are popularly known as Sapta Badri Kshetram.
The Seven temples are listed as below •
Badri Vishal- the main temple which is located at 3133 mtrs.-23 kms from Yogdhyan Badri
• Yogdhyan Badri – enroute from Joshirmutt to Badri Vishal at Pandukeshwar at an atltitude of 1920 mtrs.
• Narasing Badri- also known as Thirupiridhi vaishnava divya desam.
Some consider this as one of the Sapta Badri kshetrams
. • Vridha Badri- located at Animath village between JOshirmutt and Helang. About 7 kms from Joshirmutt on the way to Urgam
• Dhyan Badri-located 1 km from Urgam village.
• Bhavishya Badri- 20 kms from Joshirmutt near Tapovan by vehicle and from there 6 kms trek up the hill at an altitude of 2744 mtrs. THE FUTURE BHADRINATH temple will be at this place . •
Adi Badri is located 17 kms from Karna Prayag. The cluster of 16 temples constructed by Adi Sankaracharyar. Dhyan Badri and Narasing Badri(Joshirmutt) are not included in Pancha Badri kshetrams. Yogdhyan Badri,Vridha Badri,Dhayan Badri, Bhavishya Badri can be accessed from Joshirmutt as base.
Badrikshetram also has Theertha mahimai as the Pancha Prayags –confluence of holy rivers are located in this area. An important information is except for the main temple, Badri Vishal the other temples scattered in remote villages remain open all through the year because they are at a lesser altitude.
Badrinath is one of the eight swayam vyakta kshetrams located in Garhwal Himalyas , referred as Gandha Madhana Parvatham in our scriptures like Srimad Bhagavatam.
It is also one of the 108 vaishnava divya desams glorified by Thirumangai Azhwar in his 20 pasurams .
In one of the pasuram , Azhwar advises us to seek and have a darshan of Lord Bhadri Vishaal in our youth itself , as
later the KALA (TIME) swallows our age invisibly
thus it will be too late for an old person to visit the holy bhadri
associated knee pain , joint pains and the body does not cooperate making a mockery of ones self for wasting ones precious life .
Here Lord incarnated as Narayanan and graced the sacred ashtakshara mantram upadesam to Naran. Naran and Narayanan are believed to be meditating at this place for the welfare of the world.
The temple is situated on Urvashi peetam between Nara and Narayanan mountains on the banks of River Alakananda.
The temple is open during April-October (starting from Akshaya thrithiyai and closed during Deepavali) and is closed during peak winter. Ganesh Gufa, Vyas Gufa, Mata murthi temple, Vasudhaara Falls, Satopanth,Bhim pool, origin of River Saraswathi are near Badrinath.
There are jeeps and cars plying from Badrinath temple to visit the above places which are situated in Mana village-the last village on Indo-China Border. It takes 3 hours to and fro to visit Mana village. There is a Mata Murthi temple is on the way to Mana village.
As per legend, Dharma and Murthi were the parents of Naran and Narayanan (who were the incarnations of Lord Vishnu).
They transformed themselves into mountains to avoid distraction. To fulfill the desire of HIS mother Mata Murthi, once in a year, the Lord visits this temple. Uddhavar who is considered as the utsava murthi in the temple is brought to this place with paraphernalia.
The famous Vyas Gufa is the place where Sage Vyasar compiled the four Vedas, recited Mahabharatam while Yaanai Mugathaan(Lord Ganesha) penned the same while the former dictated. Ganesh Gufa is beside Vyas Gufa. Nearby, we can find the origin of River Saraswathi who flows as Antharvahini till she reaches Triveni Sangamam. River Saraswathi darshanam can be had here only .
There is a small temple dedicated to the River Goddess. The flow with which she appears on this earth in inexplicable.
Near to Badrinath temple , Bheem Phool and Satopanth are places associated with Pandavas . Pandukeshwar,also known as Yogdhyan Badri is on the way to Badrinath is the birth place of Pandavas. Vyas Gufa and Ganesh Gufa are related to Mahabharatam. Pandavas along with Draupadi on their way to Swargam (satopanth) reached this place and when Draupadi could not cross River Saraswathi, Bheem is belived to have thrown a boulder across the river to enable her to cross over.
This is Bheem pool. This is located on the way to Satopanth- Draupadi,Sahadeva,Nakula, Arjuna, Bheema left their bodies on the way whereas Dharmaraja Yudhistira was able to go to Swargam from Satopanth. VAsudhaara Falls is about 3-4 kms from Mana village on a higher altitude. Villagers believe that if a drop of water falls on us, we get redeemed from all our sins. It will take about 4-5 hours to go to Vasudhaara Falls and return to Mana village due to the altitude and climatic conditions.
To visit Vasudhaara Falls, we must allocate one full day.WE planned to visit Vasudhaara Falls from Badri but due to time constraint,we couldn’t visit. But the ever merciful compassionate Perumal blessed us by giving HIS darshan in the evening and to watch (Abhisheka seva) Thirumanjana seva.
Our pilgrimage lasted for about five days
First day :- Entire day driving from Haridwar to Joshirmutt-Night stay at Joshirmutt
Second day :- Entire day at BAdrinath
Third day – Visited Badri Vishal, Yogadhyan Badri, Vridha Badri,Dhyan Badri, Narasing Badri, Vishnu Prayag-Temples
Fourth day :- Visited Bhavishya Badri, Karna Prayag Temples-night stay at Karna Prayag
Fifth day – Visited Adi Badri, Nand Prayag, Dev Prayag temples and reached Haridwar –
We had darshan of Sri Bhadri Narayana Perumal during 2003 but were not conversant with the other temples . The travel details was done in pdf format for piligrims convenience and is available in the below link
We boarded the evening flight to New Delhi and reached Delhi at 10 P.M. The flight was delayed by half an hour. From airport, we took a Metro to New Delhi railway station to board Dehradun AC train at 2355 hours. Reached Haridwar at 4 .M. Our cab driver , Narendra was waiting to pick us up at Haridwar station.
We had already booked a cab and fixed the tour plan. We drove to ISKCON, Haridwar where we had actually planned to check in and then go to Hari Ki Pauri for purification . Being a small ashram and as there was no response from ISKCON, we straightaway drove to Hari KI Pauri which was already crowded.. After purification and cow_puja, we drove to Rishikesh as we wanted to have darshan of Lord Venkateswara Swamy before proceeding further.
Wayback in 2003, only after praying to Lord Srinivasar, we could get bus tickets to go to Badrinath and on our return, we stayed at Andhra Bhavan for 2 days and participated in all the sevas. So, this time also we wanted to take the Lord’s darshan. Reached the temple at about 9 A.M., performed archanai and paid for the next day’s abhishekam to the Lord. On the way, we stopped at Lakshman Jhoola to take printouts of our accommodation and for recharging Airtel mobile as BSNL network connectivity was poor.
Hari Naam sankirtan was continuously played in the car all through our journey. Chanting the holy names of the Lord and contemplating on the Lord while admiring the nature’s beauty-the tall peaks covered with thick trees trying to touch the sky and the gentle flowing Alakananda on the other side as if guiding us to her place of origin…. I wish I were a poet to describe the scenic beauty.
WE were happy to note the developments in this lORD’s holy land –construction of Hydel Power projects, dams etc….We learnt from our driver that only experienced and specially qualified persons to drive in the ghat region would be permitted to drive and they are strictly supposed to wear uniform and carry their permit with them always.
After driving for about 2 hours , we reached Dev Prayag about 70 kms away from Rishikesh located at an altitude of 618 m at mid-noon. As the temple would be closed, we proceeded to Rudra Prayag which is about 2 hours drive from Dev Prayag, stopping for a while at Srinagar to fuel our car. GHMVNL has guest houses at all important places.
We had to turn on the AC becoz we couldn’t withstand the sweltering heat . We thought the drive would be pleasant as we were in Himalayas but it turned out to be otherwise. Added to this, construction work was going on all through the way and so there was pollution. Enroute we halted for a while at Rudra Prayag to have lunch and then proceeded with our journey. Reached Joshirmutt and checked in at GMVNL Guest House located in Main Bazaar at about 6.30 p.m..From Rishikesh upto Rudra Prayag , the route to chardham is the same .
The route to Badrinath diverges at Rudra Prayag. Joshirmutt always has floating population of pilgrims and mostly pilgrims halt at this place. So, we can find innumerable lodges in this congested area . As we had prior booking, we checked into this guest house where we were allotted a compact deluxe room which had no ventilation and fan.
WE wanted to have a bigger and better room but as the rooms were not available, we had no option and retired for the night. Joshirmutt is basically a cold place and the rooms are constructed in such a way out of wood with limited or no ventilation so that the room is kept warm. There is no provision for ceiling fans as there is no requirement. The room rates are high during the peak season depending upon the demand. The minimum rent is about Rs.1000/-per day. We can find the room tariffs displayed in the reception mentioning the room rents during various seasons. We practically experienced the impact of global warming. We didn’t have any choice other than having dinner in the restaurant itself. On 15th June, we started our journey to Badrinath at 7 A.M . Had to wait for sometime for the gates to open . Reached Badrinath via Pandukeshwar , Deva Darshani. The snow clad mountains were shining when the sun rays touched them which is a feast to the eyes. We went to Chinna Jeeyar Swami Mutt which is near Ambani’s guest house where we were allotted 2 rooms for Rs.450/- each.
We met Sridhar Swami who was referred by our friend and expressed our desire to go to Vasudhaara Falls after having darshan of Lord Badrinath. Sridhar Swami informed that it would take minimum 2 hours to have darshan in the temple due to heavy crowd and it would not be possible for us to go to Vasudhaara Falls which is 4 kms beyond Mana Village as the weather there was unpredictable and it would get dark by 5 P.M.
He said that it would take one full day to go to Vasudhaara Falls and return. So, we dropped the idea of going to Vasudhaara Falls with a heavy heart thinking that he was trying to demotivate us.
With a set of clothes for changeover, we left the Mutt at about 11 A.M. and went to Tapta KUnd in our vehicle to have bath. It is customary to purify ourselves in the hot springs of Tapta Kund before getting inside the temple for darshan. There are separate bathing places for ladies and gents and separate rooms but the entire place was over crowded. Seeing the crowd, we felt as if we were in Tirumala during Brahmotsavam!. We were shocked to see serpentine queue for darshan. While adiyen went to buy some seva ticket, my daughters joined the queue. WE learnt from the authorities that during day time, there is no special ticket and darshan is common for everyone and that the temple would close by 12.30 and everyone would get a chance to take darshan of the Lord. We joined the queue and finally had darshan of Lord Badrinarayanan for few minutes who was beautifully decorated with flowers. One of the pujaris looking at the tilak on adiyen’s daughter’s forehead, allowed her inside for darshan. How fortunate!!!
While we were reciting Sahasranamam, a saintly person whose dressing resembled that of Jada Bharathan(he had jadai and was wearing soiled clothes but his face was glowing ) approached us and advised us to have the Maha Prashadam which would be distributed shortly. WE purchased 2 paper plates for Rs.2/-each and joined the queue . We realized the Lord’s ever compassionate quality when we ,the most fallen souls, were given the mahaprasadam comprising of rice, dal , curry.
With tear filled eyes, all five of us partook the prasadam. Adiyen approached the nearby counter where tickets were being issued for special sevas. Tickets for Gita Paat and Nirmalaya darshan were already sold out but only one ticket for Abhishekam for next day morning was available. We booked abhishekam ticket for next day morning seva in which 2 persons are allowed and Sahasranama Archanai Seva for children in the evening. Went back to Chinna Jeeyar Mutt at 2 p.m. and had prasadam. The reporting time for Sahasranama archanai seva was 5 p.m. and hence we didn’t visit Mana Village Instead , we Went to the temple at 5 P.M. for darshan.
There were long queues for various sevas to be conducted in the evening. While our children joined the queue, aidyongal sat in front of the utsavar sannidhi and took a sankalpam to recite Vishnu Sahasranamam atleast 11 times. The utsava murthi who is a replica of the moolavar is made of silver with chatur bhujam. The temple management has recently constructed a separate sannidhi for the utsava murthi within the temple precincts . The new clothes given by devotees to the diety as part of their offering are hung in the sannidhi. Hardly we completed 6 rounds, a group of ISKCON devotees from Delhi entered the temple singing Hare Krishna Maha Mantra. The electrifying kirtan went on for about one hour while everyone present was dancing and chanting in ecstasy the holy names of the Lord . We profusely thanked Perumal for this association to chant the holy names at the holiest place on the holiest day,Ekadasi. After making few purchases, we retired for the night.
On 16th June, at 2 A.M. adiyongal went to Tapta Kund and entered the temple for participating in Thirumanjana seva . The reporting time for the seva is 4 a.m. and we joined the organized queue.
As per the ticket number printed, the incharge allowed us to enter into the temple. The darsana mantapam was jam packed with devotees and we didn’t even get place to sit. After the devotees settled down, adiyen somehow managed to squeeze through and got place to sit right in the centre while my wife was comfortable standing and having darshan of the Lordships. WE felt blessed to be in one of the eight swayam vyakta kshetrams (where the Lord’s image is not sculpted by anyone but Lord out of HIS free WILL manifested in this place) Perumal appeared in this place in Padmasanam posture with chatur bhujam- the two lower hands resting on HIS lap and the remaining 2 hands holding sankhu and chakram. And as he was in meditation, the ever inseparable Thayar (Agalagillene Irayium Endru…) appeared as a badri vruksham to protect Perumal from the harsh weather. Hence, Perumal is known as Badri Narayanan.
Lord descended from Sri Vaikuntam to the bhooloka to give mantropadesam to naran(human) at this place. Shiva who was meditating at this place moved to Kedarnath. Lord bestowed a boon upon him that a devotee visiting this place must first have darshan of Siva and then take HIS darshan. Hence , we find a small Siva lingam in front of the temple. This idol of Badri Narayanan was recovered by Adi Sankaracharyar in 8th century from Tapta Kund and was duly installed by him. Also, there is a sannidhi for Adi Sankaracharyar as he retrieved the vigraham.
Before entering the temple, we visited these shrines . Vaikuntanathan resolved to preach the sacred Ashtakshari Thirumantiram to the mortals (Naran) and appeared as Naran and Narayanan- the sons of Dharma Devathai(Yaman) and his wife (Murthi). As they didn’t want to get disturbed and distracted by anyone , they assumed the form of 2 mountains and meditated on the banks of River Alakananda. Indra tried to disturb the penance and sent apsaras from Devalokam little realizing that Perumal is beyond all such illusion. Out of Perumal’s will, a beautiful lady emerged from HIS thigh who surpassed everyone’s beauty and presented her to Indra. As the damsel appeared from Perumal’s thigh, she was known as Urvashi and the place where Perumal meditated is known as “Urvashi Peetam” on which the present day temple is existing .
AS Lord Krishna mentioned in Bhagavad Gita, Lord Narayanan imparted the sacred Tirumantram to Naran at this place. Hence this place is renowned as Ashtakshari kshetram and chanting of the mantram give thousand fold benefit. Contemplating on the Lord and reciting Tirumantram, we waited in the queue until we were ushered in by the authorities. There are about 15 deities inside the garbagriham. All through the day, the beauty of the Lord is hidden as HE is fully bedecked with jewellery and flowers . Only during Nirmalya darsanam and during Thirumanjanam , the Lord’s pristine beauty can be enjoyed. During Nirmalaya darsanam which is the last seva in the night, jewellery is removed and Lord is adorned with fresh chandan and flowers. During thirumanjanam, even those are removed and the dhivya mangala swaroopam of Perumal can be enjoyed. Devotees throng to have these darshans.
At the Centre we can have darshan of Lord Badri Narayanan in meditative posture. As HE is a tapasvi, Thayar is not physically present but is present as Badri Vruksham which cannot be perceived by mortal eyes On HIS right, we have darshan of Garudar- Kuberan on HIS right – the demigod incharge of wealth. Kubera’s capital is Alakapuri which is beyond Badrinath. The materialists usually place few coins in front of Kubera and bring them back for worship. He is predominant amongst others as he is decorated in silver.ON the left side in the front, we can have darisanam of Uddhavar who is treated as Utsava murthi in this temple.
He is taken in palanquin to Maata Murthi temple once in a year as Perumal’s representative. In Srimad Bhagavatam, it is mentioned that Lord Krishna instructs Uddhavar to go to Gandhana madhana parvatam (the present Badri Kshetram) and do penance.On the left side, behind Uddhavar , we have Deva rishi Naradar ‘sidol who appeared in the nearby Narada Kund. It is believed that Sage Naradar eternally lives in this place always contemplating on the Lord.Nara- Narayanan –becoz of whom this place became sacred. Lord Narayanan gives darshan with naachiyars- Sridevi, Bhudevi,Niladevi, The deva loka damsel Urvashi who appeared from Lord Narayanan’s thigh is beside Niladevi.
Rewal, the celibate Keralite Namboodri head priest is the only person who is allowed inside the garbagriham. (He is like Ekaangi in Tirumala , the bachelor who alone is allowed to touch the divine Thirumeni of Perumal). The Rewal draped in a dhoti and black long thick Kurta and with his mouth covered with a cloth is the only eligible person to touch the divine idol of the Lord.
He removed carefully the flowers from the Lord’s thirumeni and carefully removed the chandana kaapu from the Lord’s thirumeni and gave it to his assistant. We were fortunate to get some chandan from him. Thirumanjanam to the swayambhu Perumal and HIS associates started amidst chanting of Pancha Suktham by the pundits who were sitting on either sides near the entrance on an elevated seat .
The Rewal , ( priest) who was now playing the role of an affectionate mother Yasodha, gently anointed Til oil to the divya Thirumeni of Perumal and others. Later holy water was poured through sankhu followed by milk ,curd, honey . The dhivya mangala swaroopam of Perumal can be clearly seen doing milk thirumanjanam. Adiyongal recited softly Neeratam pasurams after the priests completed Pancha Suktam recitation .The REwal gently pressed a silk cloth to wipe the Lordships. During alankaram, the priests recited Vishnu Sahasranamam while the Rewal applied sandal oil to the Tirumeni of the Lord and dressed them in new silk clothes. Within no time, the Lord was beautifully bedecked with fine jewellery. The Lord was smeared with chandana kaapu and decorated with flowers. All this is done in the devotees presence .
The holy water was later distributed to the assembled devotees and a small prasadam pack comprising of few sweets, tulasi , chandan etc were given to the participants. The entire process takes about 60-90 minutes. While doing pradakshinam, we purchased a small bottle of holy water for Rs.20/- which is being sold inside the temple . We Came back to Chinna Jeeyar Mutt and after honouring prashadam, left the holy abode with an intense desire to revisit the dhaam in the near future. Sridhar Swamy was very kind to pack lunch for us. Left Badri Vishal at about 8A.M. and drove to Pandukeshwar which is 20 kms away from Badrinath on the way to Joshirmutt. Yogadhyan Badri –one of the Sapta Badri Kshetrams is located in Pandukeshwar at an altitude of 1829 mtrs. .
To reach the temple, we need to get down off the main road , and climb down the steps to reach the temple. This is the place where King Pandu along with his wives,Kunti and Madri did penance and is the birthplace of Pandavas. Pandu who was cursed attained salvation here and after Mahabharata war, the Pandavas after handing over their kingdom to Parishit ,did penance at this place to atone for their sins. This temple was constructed by Pandavas. In the sanctum sanctorum, Lord Lakshmi Narayanan is in the centre with Sridevi towards HIS right and Bhudevi on the left. To the left of Bhudevi is Madri’s idol. We were told that there is a Shiva linga worshipped by Pandu beneath inside the garbagriham.
From there, we visited Vishnu Prayag- the confluence of Alakananda and Dhauli Ganga.
This is on Badrinath-Joshirmutt route in Chamoli district at an altitude of 1372 mtrs. As per legend, Sage Narada did penance and Lord appeared at this place. After having darshan of Lord Vishnu, Goddess Mahalakshmi and Kubera who is on the left side of Perumal , we went down few steep steps to the actual place of confluence to collect the holy water but in vain as the force was more.
Driving past Joshirmutt, on the Joshirmutt –Rishikesh Road, between Joshirmutt and Helang near Pipalkote , we reached Animath village which is about 7 kms from Joshirmutt to visit Vridha Badri at an altitude of 1380 mtrs.. This is on the way to Urgam, our next destination. We had to trek down few steep steps and occasionally climb and get down to reach Vridha Badri.
It takes about 15-20 minutes to walk down from the main road. This temple is neatly maintained surrounded by beautiful garden tended with great care by the priest family. We could see a wide range of beautiful flowers which are used for worshipping the Lord. Lord Vishnu appeared to Sage Narada as an old man and hence this place is known as Vridha Badri. We offered dry fruits to the Lord and the pujari honoured us with tulasi leaves . The serenity induces everyone to meditate on the Lord calmly without any distraction. Here Lord Badrinarayanan is alone in standing posture holding Sankhu, Chakra,Gada Padmam .
We proceeded to Helang and from there drove to Urgam village at an altitude of 2135 mtrs. The roads on the regular route from Rishikesh to Badrinath via Dev Prayag, Srinagar,Chamoli, Joshirmutt are broad, well maintained and secure but the roads on the other parts are not yet developed to that extent. This can be seen while going to Dhyan Badri. One needs to take a diversion from Joshirmutt-Rishikesh road to visit Dhyan Badri.
Here the muddy ghat roads pose threat and driving is challenging due to unleveled roads and obstructions caused due to landslides like boulders on the sides. There are no “taar roads” and a strong wind is enough to engulf the glass with dust and thus obstruct our view fully. The roads get blocked due to the debris caused by landslides which are not immediately attended to by BSFs as there is not much traffic. Occasionally, jeeps and local buses ply from this village to Joshirmutt and nearby villages .Like in Nepal, these buses are over packed with people literally sitting on the bus.
The bus tilts towards one side unable to bear the weight. From Urgam , we can visit Dhyan Badri , ARdha Badri which is about 2 kms from Dhyan Badri and beyond 5 kms is Kalpeshwar-one of the Pancha Kedar temples. The drive was really challenging . Our hearts nearly skipped a beat when our driver had to put a sudden break while turning. A chill ran through my spine when the driver pointed to a six seater white car which had a fatal end just recently claiming lives of 5 people. The Lord’s holy names were constantly on our lips which eased out our tension .
We reached Urgam at about 1 P.M. We relaxed in a nearby tea stall . The inmates made some hot rotis for us to have along with puihora prasadam given by Sridhar Swamy, At about 2 P.M., started walking down amidst green fields for about 15 to 20 minutes to reach Dhyan Badri temple which is about 1-1.5 kms from Urgam. The stony path is well laid though it is narrow.
Watching the green fields surrounded by peaked mountains, we reached the temple which was closed. There is a very small pond inside the temple compound which reminded us of the holy Saligramam pond near Melkote which was sanctified by our Acharyar.
A teenage boy who happens to be the pujari’s son opened the temple doors to enable us to have darshanam.
The garbagriham houses the main diety of Lord Narayanan in sitting posture in the centre. There are also vigrahams of Lakshmi Narayanan, Kubera and Siva lingam. Beneath we can find small idols of Lord Ranganatha with Sridevi and Bhudevi. Perumal appeared to Shiva who was meditating at this place. Perumal also did penance (dhyan) at this place before manifesting HIMSELF at Badri Vishal. Hence, this place is known as Dhyan Badri.
On enquiry, we learnt that Ardha Badri is a small temple which would be closed for darshan now and hence we returned to Urgam. As we were tired, we didn’t visit Kalpeshwar. WE came back to Urgam and drove back to Joshirmutt and reached the temple at 5 P.M. Joshirmutt is considered as one of the 108 divya desams , known as” Thirupiridhi”. Some count this as one of the sapta badri Kshetrams instead of Ardha Badri where there is only half figure ). Whatever it is , we wanted to have Lord Narasimhar’s darsanam .
Fortunately, the temple was open and the priest offered our dry fruits to Perumal. Here, Lord Narasimhar is in sitting posture and it is believed that when HIS left wrist wanes , the Badri temple would be permanently closed for darshan and Lord would manifest HIMSELF at Bhavishya Badri near Joshirmutt in near future. There are various idols in the sanctum.
From right, we can find Chamundi,Kubera,Udhavar, Badri Narayanana, Narasimhar in the centre, on the left is Garudar, Lakshmana, Rama , Sita . Lakshmana and Goddess Sita are in white whereas the thirumeni of Lord Rama is in black(shyamaa sundaran). The utsava murthi is Narasimhar Hanumar. During winter, when the main shrine at Badri Vishal remains closed for 6 months, the utsava murthi is brought down to this temple. This temple remains open all through the year. We then visited Vasudevar sannidhi who is believed to be the divya desa Perumal. Lord Vasudevar is in Nindra Thirukolam (Standing posture) holding Lotus and Gadam in HIS upper right and left hands and sankhu and chakram in HIS lower hands. There are also sannidhis for Sankarshana, Shiva, asthabhuja Ganesh, Kali and Bharivan around the temple. We were happy to note that one of the pasurams from naalayira divya prabhandham about this divya desam is written in Tamil and hung at the temple entrance. While we were coming out, we happened to have darshan of one of the Shankaracharyars appointed by Adi Sankaracharyar to take care of these temples. WE checked into GMVNL guest house at Main Bazar and fortunately this time we were provided a better accommodation. Thanking Perumal for allowing us to have HIS darshan at 5 places in Badri kshetram, we retired for the night. ON 17th we checked out by 7 .A.M. and drove to Saldhar which is about 19 kms from Joshirmutt. The weather was pleasant and chilly and we were reminded of Tirumala ghat road.. We saw an arc mentioned as Tapovan. This is a serene place for meditation. Driving ahead, we reached the starting point of our trekking. Bhavishya Badri is located in Subhain village and one has to trek the hill for 6 kms in a lonely path . We just found a small arch mentioning Bhavishya Badri.
We five of us were in a lonely place. Initially there were few steep steps laid as a pathway for about a kilometer. Singing Annamacharyar keerthanas and chanting the Tirumantram, we prayed God for HIS darshan in this lonely place and started trekking. There are no sign boards, no indication about the route . The Lord seated as Antharyaami was guiding us..
We didn’t even know whether the route taken by us was right or not. We were enthralled to see a villager from whom we enquired about the route. Felt happy to note that we were on the correct path and as per his directions, we continued our way. Beyond the first settlement, there is no pathway at all. There was greenery everywhere and the different varieties of wild flowers which had blossomed were so colourful and pleasing to our eyes impelling the children to burst into some song. WE could see chameleons, colourful butterflies, squirrels , forest ants and humming sound of bees from far. However, we realized that the forest shrubs and plants which were growing on either sides of this so called tiny footpath was hostile. The leaves were sharp and accidentally if our hands touched the leaves, that part in our hand which came in contact with the leaf would get swollen immediately. WE had to be cautious while trodding the path so as to avoid stamping on some forest snail/snake/ant etc. The path is slippery and my daughter who made a wrong choice of wearing heels had to remove her slippers and walk bare footed all through the way. Of course all these didn’t matter because we were focused on our destination. Once in a while, when we came across some passerby , we used to take directions from him and proceed on our adventurous trip. As we are not used to altitudes, we treaded slowly taking occasional rests . Somehow we were all energetic singing the glories of the Lord and enjoying nature’s beauty. In lighter moments, cracking jokes on each other once in a while to ease out the stress, we kept on ascending the hill. While trekking so, we suddenly got confused as the so called footpath was leading to two ways and we didn’t know which one to take. My niece found a Lays wrapper and suggested that the path would be inhabited. Children were enjoying the adventure guessing the route,pulling each other….It was a real holiday for them. We were imagining as to how Thirumangai Azhwar would have reached Badri Vishal which would have been unexplored like this at that time. There was no one to enquire and we were getting nervous as to whether the path taken by us was right or not. After walking for about half an hour, we met a lady who said that the route taken by us was wrong and she volunterred to take us to the correct path. We felt that it was God in disguise who appeared to help us out. We were once again left to ourselves and continued with our journey. After trekking for about 2 hours, we were exhausted and were searching for a place to relax. Luckily, we found a shop on the way . As we wished to remain light while trekking, we didn’t have breakfast and now the children badly needed something to re-energise themselves. The shop provided all sorts of snacks, cool drinks , medicines, water etc.
After replenishing ourselves, we continued onwards our 2 kms trek journey. This particular settlement was much better compared to other isolated places. We continued trekking and once again left with no one around. WE could not locate any path way and didn’t know which side to take-left or right!! WE took the wrong path and after some time, we saw a person down the hill and screamed for help. He informed that he is the temple priest and he was also going to Bhavishya Badri. Our joy knew no bounds. He accompanied us for some time, and as we couldn’t cope up with his lightning speed, he gave us directions and left. He said that the temple was only one km away . WE were now on a bigger plain surface. Surrounded by snow clad high mountain peaks on all sides, sun rays falling through the tall eucalyptus trees and gentle breeze full of medicinal properties accompanied by Dhauli Ganga flowing as a small stream , green vegetation in the surrounding places and the sound of cuckoos as if welcoming us , we were in ecstasy looking at the marvelous creation of the Lord. We have seen this in movies but now we are here experiencing them with our own eyes but for deers and peacocks.
Even after trekking for hours, we were still energetic and bubbling with joy as we were near to our destination. Two local women farmers were passing by us suggested us to taste the crystal clear cold water from the Dhauli Ganga stream. Pure unadultered tasty water was like nectar. They accompanied us to the temple. We reached the temple past noon.
AS the pujari met us on the way, he was waiting for us.
All of us had very good darshan of the Lord. The pujari explained to us that 10 years ago, there was only a sketch mark on the rock but now we can see the Lord’s figure emerging out of the cave.
The Lord is in the form of Narasimha bhagavan. The pujari pointed us to the various features in the half emerged idol attributing its form to that of Lord Narasimha. How fortunate and blessed we are to have Lord Narasimhar as Bhavishya Badri Narayanan. In the present Badri Vishal, the Lord is in the form of Narayanan whereas here HE is going to assume the form of Bhakthavatsalan, Lord Narasimhar whose avataram is for the sake of devotee. JAI NARASING DEV!! WE offered our dry fruits to the deities and did kirtan for about half an hour.
ADIYEN& FAMILY PERFORMING KIRTAN AT BHAVISHYA BHADRI TEMPLE
A mahamantra sticker is at the entrance which was pasted by ISKCON PAADAYATRA troup who visited this temple some time ago. WE were imagining that when Thirumangai Azhwar visited Badri Vishal few thousands of years ago, that place would have been similar to this one now.
After spending about an hour, we started our return journey which as per the locals would take half the time, but for us it took almost 3 hours to return. WE came down at about 5 P.M. and proceeded to Karna Prayag which is about 3 hours from Saldhar at an elevation of 1450 mtrs.. Checked into GMVNL guest house located near the confluence itself and retired for the night. Excellent room . This was the best guest house where we stayed in our trip. On 18th morning, after witnessing the confluence of River Alakananda with Pindar river , proceeded to Adi Badri which is about 19 kms from Karna Prayag and takes about one hour drive. Adi Badri is not on Rishikesh-Badri route , one needs to visit Adi Badri via Karna Prayag. Adi Badri is the oldest temple comprising of 16 temples . While Adi Sankaracharyar was residing in Himalayas ,somewhere near Karna Prayag, the Lord appeared in his dream and told him about HIS whereabouts and ordered him to construct a temple for him. The place where the Lord appeared to Adi Sankaracharyar is presently known as Adi Badri and is considered as one of the Sapta Badri Kshetrams.
Adi Sankaracharyar spread Hinduism from this place and built a temple. Out of the cluster of 16 temples, many were built under the guidance of Sankaracharyar and about 5 temple were built later during Gupta era. In the olden days, when approach to Badri Vishal was tough, people worshipped Lord Vishnu here. It is believed that in future when Badri Vishal becomes inaccessible and Lord manifests in Bhavishya Badri, Bhavishya Badri would be known as Badri, Badri Vishal would be known as Adi Badri and the present Adi Badri would be known as Yog Badri. The temple is on the main road itself and it is easily approachable. All the temples look similar.
From there, we drove to Dev Prayag and reached the place at about 5 P.M.
We visited Raghunathji temple at Dev Prayag which is one of the 108 divya desams. While ascending the 100+ steps, we recollected our earlier visit to this kshetram along with my father and shared the Lord’s pastimes. Had darshanam of the mantapam where the utsava murthis are placed for public darshan, the banyan tree which is considered to be the one not affected by Pralayam and after thanking Perumal for enabling us to visit Saptha Badri kshetrams , especially Bhavishya Badri , we left the place. The confluence of Alakananda with Bhagirathi at Dev Prayag is eye captivating.
Reached Haridwar at 10 P.M., and after settling the accounts with the car driver, we had our dinner in a nearby Jain hotel and were waiting for our train recollecting our trip to the holy abodes. It was like a dream come true. Boarded Dehradun-New Delhi AC train in the wee hours 0040 hours which was supposed to reach New Delhi at 5 A.M. and take the onward flight to Srinagar at 9 A.M. and return back to Delhi by 3P.M. flight and take the connecting flight to Hyderabad at 7 p.m. Due to technical snag in the train, it was delayed by almost 3.5 hours. WE landed in New Delhi railway station at 08.30 a.m. and rushed to the nearby Metro station to take the train to airport. Reached airport at 9 a.m. and by the time the formalities were completed, we missed the flight . As we availed LTC, it was mandatory to produce Delhi-Srinagar-Delhi boarding passes and hence we had to be in Srinagar at any cost. WE were left with no other option than cancelling this ticket and book in the next flight. The scheduled departure of AI flight was at 11 hours and it takes about 2 hours to reach Srinagar. As we had a breather of an extra hour, we booked the tickets. To add to our dismay, this flight got delayed by 2 hours and now we were really perplexed because if we miss the Delhi bound Srinagar flight at 1500 hours which was the last one, we would miss our connecting flight to Hyderabad!!. Tickets were not available for the next 4-5 days as it was end of LTC season..!!The authorities were surprised to note that we wished to return on the same day without visiting Srinagar. Had to inform that we had visited Kashmir earlier and as there was an emergency, we were constrained to leave on the same day. They informed that it would not be possible for us to take the 3p.m. flight as the formalities would not get completed. I literally pleaded with the top most authority to help me out . He was kind enough to issue a Delhi Boarding pass (which would be issued at Srinagar) from Delhi itself which is against rules using his power. Thanked him for his gesture. Reached Srinagar at 3 p.m. . The scheduled departure of the 3’o clock flight was delayed by half and hour because the same flight returns.
Within this 30 minutes, we had to compulsorily go through all the formalities (especially in Srinagar, there is strict security norms which cannot be skipped)-we had to come out and again get into the airport. We were stopped at the entrance because the time was up and were informed that the time for taking boarding pass was over. When we produced the Boarding Pass, the authorities were surprised and doubted us. Meanwhile,we could hear our names being announced to board the flight as it was about to depart… We were quickly frisked by the authorities and our luggages were put in a hand driven trolley . An official took me aside to enquire as to who issued the boarding pass which was against the rules and I had to request him that due to an emergency , I had to rush back while my perplexed wife was eagerly waiting to join me. The flight didn’t take off for 20 minutes until we boarded it. We safely reached Delhi by 5.30 p.m. and boarded the Hyderabad bound flight at 7 p.m. without any hurdles. Reached our home Thiruvengadam at midnight and the first thing what we did was to open the altar and fall at Divya Dampadhigal and Acharyars’feet for making this possible.
JAI JAI SHRI BADRI VISHAL
Please check all the clips for a clear darshanam of the holy dhaam
Today 06.05.2020 is the most auspicious day as is the
Appearance day of Madhurakavi Azhwar …………………..
Swamy Ananthazhwan …………………
and Acharyar Nadadoor Ammal
Let us recollect their devotion to Acharyar and the great Lordships on this wonderful day .
Acharyar Varadaguru the great Acharya had the deepest bhakti to Lord Varadaraja of Kanchipuram One night when he was serving ” LORD” in an ecstatic mood, the priest brought very hot milk to the Lord as offering .
Acharyar Varadaguru was deeply distressed that such hot milk would burn the tender tongue of the Lord! He stopped the priest from offering the hot milk and began cooling it down until it was warms enough to be offered.
The Lord himself was moved by the Vatsalya bhava of Varadaguru and called him ‘Amma’ – my mother!
From then onwards Varadaguru became Nadadoor Ammal.
After this episode, in a dream one night, Lord Varadaraja commanded Ammal to erect a Mantapam for His Vasantotsavam.
Accordingly Ammal fulfilled the Lord’s desire, just as a mother would fulfill the wishes of her son in spite of difficulties.
Another glorious pastime remains to be cherished .
Once Ammal and his disciples undertook a pilgrimage to Tirumalai hills.
The graceful personality and humility of Acharyar attracted the people there..
A Chieftain Kandavaran was the leader of that Lada race .
He was annoyed and irritated to see the crowd falling the the feet of Acharyar.
He decided to disturb them.
With his mantric power he made the disciples unconscious.
Ammal meditated and chanted the Sudarsana maha mantra and his own composition ‘Hetipungavastotram’ and broke the spell.
The angry Kandavaran called Ammal for a debate and when defeated surrendered to the Acharya himself.
The benevolent guru not only excused him but also made him a Srivaishnava by offering him Panchasamskaras.
With the money offered by Kandavaran, Ammal established a beautiful village and named it ‘Ladagraharam’ and continued his journey.
On the way, the Lord himself came as a young brahmachari and appeased the hunger of the pilgrims with curd and rice.
At the same time, there was a big commotion in the temple as the silver vessel with the naivedyam had suddenly disappeared.
Lord Venkateswara Himself announced to the temple authorities that He Himself fed his dear Ammal and his disciples and that they should receive Ammal with all temple honours who will be arriving shortly .
Swami Engalazhwan was Acharya of Nadathur Ammal , who was the direct disciple of Thirukkurukaippiran Pillan . All glories to our Acharyar
Acharya Nadadoor Thiruvadigale sharanam
Let us cherish the great devotee and most revered disciple of Swamy Ramanuja ………………….
Ananthazhwan vaibhavam now
The sacred TIRUMALA Hills consisting of seven peaks is considered to be seven-hooded. Blessed are the devotees who are fortunate to have his darshan .
There are countless devotees who have served the LORD since ages .
One such great devotee was Swamy Ananthazhwan an ardent disciple of Swamy Ramanuja .
As per Swamy Ramanuja’s directives he served the LORD few hundred years ago .There are several pastimes of Swamy Anathazhwan with Lord Srinivasa .
One divine pastime is memorable as Lord himself accepts to become Swamy Anathazhwans disciple .
Knowing about the initiatives taken by Swamy Anathazhwan in organising the temple rituals with religious fervor few devotees decided to trek the hills and have darshanam of Lord and seek the blessings of his dear devotee too .
The Srivaishnavites were walking from Srirangam and it was a very long journey .While ascending the Hills, coming from they were feeling tired and had to take some rest .
Completely exhausted they were perplexed how could they complete their pilgrimage. All of a sudden a young lad appeared before them .
The boy was appearing with divine tejas .
With srivaishna Urdhva pundram he was almost looking like vamana avatara brahmachari .
He offered his humble obeisances and said .
Oh swamins !
Adiyen has brought some temple prasada for all of you .Kindly honor the same and please feel comfortable .
The srivaishnavites being orthodox were initially impressed with the divine boy However one Elder person among the group wanted him to introduce his lineage and his Acharyar whom he was initiated .
The divine lad he was , smiled at the simple question .
He proudly replied that his name was Madhurakavidasa and his Acharyar was Swamy Anathazhwan who is serving Lord in all ways .
It was his Acharyars instructions , he had walked down the sacred hills to handover the prasada coming to know about their visit .
He further expressed that the Prasada was coming directly from the temple which was handed over to him by Swamy Anathazhwan to be given to them .
A bit surprised , the elders said ..
Oh swamin ……
Its nice to know about your association to Swamy Anathazhwan .
But we wish to hear from you about his glories .
Can we hear your swamys Thanian ? as this a custom for the srivaishnavas to recite their Acharyars glories in the form of Thanians .
The divine boy majestically recited the thanian about Swamy Anathazhwan in the seven hills which vibrated
Asritanam susaranam vande Anantharyadesikam”
(I bow to Acharya Ananthazhvan, who is the repository of knowledge, mercy and wisdom, the one Acharyar who removes ignorance and is eminently eligible for surrender by disciples)
They liked the divine lads confident answer .
However the Srivaishnavas then questioned the youngster how his taniyan made no reference to Ananthazhvan’s relation to Swamy Ramanuja.
The divine boy smiled and replied Swamins !
Actually there are two Thaniyans in praise of adiyens Acharyar Swamy Ananthazhvan, one referring to the glory of his divine personality and another referring to his connection with Swamy Ramanuja.
And please listen to the second verse of the Thanian
‘Srimath Ramanujacharya Sripadamboruhadvayam
Sathutha manga sandaryam Anantharyamaham Bhaje..
( I prostrate before adiyens Acharyar Swamy Ananthalvan who is the lotus feet of Swamy Ramanuja and who is worshipped by Srivaishnavas all over the earth )
The Srivaishnavas were convinced that the divine boy was a true disciple of Swamy Ananthalvan . They honoured the prasada with relish .
They thanked the boy for his affection and love and blessed him .
The divine boy took leave of them and ascended the Hills welcoming them to join him . Slowly, the Srivaishnavas ascended the Hills and walked into Swamy Anathazhwans ashram .
Swamy Anathazhwan was overjoyed to receive the guests from Srirangam .
They offered their obeisances and thanked him for the kind courtesy in sending the maha prasada down to the Hills They appreciated the young boy for his kindness and hospitality .
They praised the boys intellect and kindness and expressed their gratefulness to Swamy Ananthazhvan for having sent prasada through one of his bright young disciples.
Swamy Ananthalvan was bewildered. Amazed to note the divine leela , he was in total dark .
He realised that it was his LORD who took the pains to walk down with the mahaprasada to his devotees .
With tears , he wished to know about the divine lad .The Srivaishnavas explained about the divine glow the boy exhibited .
His majestic recitation of the Thanians was memorable ..
The boy was so down to earth serving the prasada They informed that the boy introduced himself as Madhurakavidasa and had recited two slokas in his praise and as they were just trekking behind him up to the hills safely .
They said that the boy went inside the temple citing some pending works.Swamy Anathazhwan pleaded them to recite the verses the boy had sung ..
They recited the two verses before Swamy Ananthazhvan.
The entire assembly was wonder struck. Swamy Anathazhwan was in tears .
They realised that the Lord had declared himself as Ananthalvan’s disciple and had chosen the name Madhurakavidasa
.Even though there were so many other Acharyas the second verse showed that it was Ananthazhvan who could be fittingly considered equal to the Lotus feet of Swamy Ramanuja.
Since then the paduka (sathari) at the shrine of Swamy Ramanuja sanctorium up the Hills came to be known as Ananthazhvan since then the two verses became famous as the Thaniyans in praise of Swamy Ananthazhvan….
Swamy Ananthazhvan thiruadigale sharanam
Our next great Acharyar is Madhurakavi (meaning in sanskrit the sweet poet ) who appeared at a holy place in Thirukolur, Tamilnadu
Once Madhurakavi Azhwar undertook an pilgrimage to Ayodhya.
He was very moved by the beauty of deities of Lord Rama, Sita Devi, Lakshmana & Anjaneya and decided to stay in Ayodhya for sometime.
During his stay, one night he saw a bright light in the sky emitting from the southern direction .
He couldn’t comprehend if it was a bright star, a forest fire or anything else.
Amazed with the strange happening , he decided to follow the light and see it for himself. Unmindful walking long distances , he followed the light .
After days of voyage, he finally reached Azhwarthirunagari a remote village and the light suddenly disappeared .
He was surprised at the phenomenon.
He enquired from the villagers about anything strange happening in their village assuming the dazzling light could have some prophecy too .
The villagers replied in negative, but expressed that a boy has been meditating under a Tamarind tree for past 16 years without even opening his eyes.
He had crawled to the tree as a baby 16 years back and remained in the tree thereafter.
Madhurakavi Azhwar was amazed with the villagers expression .He decided to see the child for himself.
Azhwar goes close as near to the tree and finds the divine child with tejas .
Eyes closed and meditating the boy was glowing with radiance which was what he saw at Ayodhya .
The place was filled with divine aura and true the boy was looking too divine as much as Lordships themselves .. Azhwar attempts to question the divine boy about what is True knowledge and gets convinced with his instant replies .
He immediately accepts the divine boy who is none other than our great Swamy Nammazhwar as his ACHARYAN Sri Madurakavi AzhwAr becomes an ardent disciple of NammAzhwAr and serves him with utmost devotion .
With all humility he submits the 11 verses of the grand KaNNinunchiRuthAmbhu glorifying his Acharyan Swamy NammAzhwAr / Sri SaTakOpar with all humility equating to Lordships . A devotee can dwell and enjoy these verses for ages on the divine works of Madhura kavi AzhwAr’s grand …..
Azhwar declared in this Prabhandham
( I do not know of any God other than my AchAryan, Swamy NammAzhwAr).
After NammAzhwAr departed from this earthly world to srivaikuntam , MadhurakaviAzhwAr was worshipping deity of Swamy NammAzhwAr with deep devotion which he consecrated and performed ThiruvarAdhanA and uthsavams in his honour.
Impressed by Swamy NammAzhwAr’s works he wanted to stage NammAzhwAr’s works in front of other scholars .
Azhwar used to contemplate on the divine knowledge shared by Acharyar .
Vaikaasi visaakam the appearance day of Swamy NammAzhwar was celebrated in a grand manner .
One particular year, when Swami Madhurakavi azhwar was taking azhwar’s deity in a procession during the celebrations, few poets from Madurai Thamizh Sangam objected to Swami Madhurakavi azhwar and said .
You are worshiping Nammazhwar who is a just a ordinary devotee not Perumal and reciting verses glorifying him
..Are those verses “sangam” certified? and authenticated by the great Madurai Tamil Sangam as “ the original and of the highest quality”? …
and is he really qualified enough to translate the Vedas into tamil ”?
Azhwar was completely disappointed hearing these critics .
He politely went to Azhwar’s sannidhi and pleaded “Azhweer!!
These people are objecting to adiyen’s only kainkaryam which is my only purpose of life ..Please do something that will not come in the way of my service to you .
Nammazhwar pleased with his devotion appeared before Swami Madhurakavi azhwar in a disguised form.
Dressed like an old man he asked Swami Madhurakavi azhwar about his reason for his grief.
Swami repeated the story to the old man.
The old man replied please do not worry about these trivial issues.
Submit this pAsuram of “kaNNan kazhaliNai…” and see the miracle “saying this he disappeared.
“Kannan Kazhalinai” will support you always”.
Madhurakavi obeyed as instructed and proceeded to Madurai to meet the so called great sangam poets .
All of them were debating in a boat discussing the authenticity of the literature . Madhurakavi offered the holy verse to the poets .
(Madhurakavi azhwar had offered the divine verses in a small leaf which was used during olden times and the divine verse “Kannam Kazhalinai…” from Thiruvaaimozhi was ever glowing )
The poets read those verses and laughed at Swami Madhurakavi azhwar for his childishness and threw it aside .
Suddenly the whole boat top sided all the poets much to their surprise .
They swam hard and with great difficulty reached the shore. To their astonishment, they found that the boat retained only that palm leaf .
The poets read it patiently and were of opinion that Swamy Nammazhwar was not any ordinary saint and apologized for their foolishness .
Thus their ego was shattered Azhwar further says that For a true devotee of Lord Krishna …. all is Lord Krishna the Food – eaten to satisfy the appetite,water drunk to quench the thirst, the betel leaves consumed after the food, are all Lord Krishna .
Chanting HIS holy name,
speaking of HIS qualities,
and thinking of HIM ,
HIS devotee will feel the hunger and the thirst
and all other needs satisfied.
They will not eat any other food since
KRISHNA CONSCIOUSNESS is enough food for them and always remain in that bliss forever …..
It is also Appearance day of our Paramacharyar “Sri. Sreesailachariar ” of Mudaliandan Thirumaligai – the paramacharyar of the present acharyar, Sri Kandhadai Kumara Venkatacharyar(Ramanujar) . Swamy is the 22nd descendant in Mudaliyandan’s (Swamy Ramanujar’s nephew) lineage.
Mudaliandan also known as Dasarathi-who is considered as reincarnation of Lord Rama was ordained to remain in Gruhastashrama (family life) by Swamy Ramanuja . He was the premier disciple of the 74 simhadipatis who were nominated by Ramanuja to continue Srivaishnava sampradaya, of them, few were sanyasis, others were gruhastas.
Srisailacharyar’s father ,Sri Mudaliandan (the 21st descendant in the lineage) gave his son his father’s name to the child who was born on the auspicious day of Chitra Pournami in Chithra star.
Glories to the acharyar who surrendered at the feet of Manavalamamunigal,Sri Dasarathi, the acharyar who stayed at Singaperumal kovil, Kanchipuram, Yadhugiri(Melkote), the one who attained Madhurakavigal’s position due to his acharyar bhakti.
It was a practice of Swamy Ramanuja as a Yati to visit seven houses daily and collect biksha for the day’s offering and consume it as prasada . This act is enjoined on the divine principle that the ascetic has nothing to call or ought to own any worldly goods as belongings to him as such owning begets a series of attachments necessarily and weds him again to worldly interests .
Swamy Ramanuja’s main en devour was to establish the UNITY OF GODHEAD in the world .
It is said once when Swamy Ramanujar was so engaged in the throughfares of srirangam a few boys form mere frolic waylaid him and pointing to a figure which by their toes they drew on the dust. They said innocently !
Swamy Look Here is our Perumal . Swamy Ramanuja was delighted to hear the little boys sermon to him .He immediately prostrated himself before the figure and blessing the boys proceeded on his way.
Swamy Ramanuja’s stewardship in the temple necessarily gave rise to bickering on the part of the local priests . They were jealous of his large number of disciples and the growing power . The administration of the Srirangam temple was done by sthanikar a local group .
They decided …
Why not eliminate him !!
to continue our own dictum’s .
To one of the seven houses where Swamy Ramanuja used to frequently approach for biksha , they reached and traced a greedy person . They gave him some money and command him to offer poisoned bikshai when Ramanuja comes .
The person’s wife being a religious lady out rightly refuses to carry out the atrocious deed . The husband somehow forces her to obey his order for their own survival .
The pious lady is confused . She devises a plan to overcome their arrangements . Sincerely praying Lord , slightly altering her general practice of offering directly into the bowl she keeps the biksha near a corner at the entrance .
When Swamy Ramanuja arrives , she with somewhat trembling hands and tears , prostrates at his lotus feet and moves away . Her mannerisms was peculiar . Swamy Ramanuja understands the reason for her tears . He moves way politely without seeking the bikshai and fasts the whole day .
Soon the news reaches his Acharyar Nambi at Thirukoshtiyur .
Upset ,the Acharyar rushes to Srirangam .
It was mid afternoon and a hot day .
The banks of cauvery was too hot to walk .
Swamy Ramanuja knowing about Acharyar’s coming rushes to welcome him at the banks of cauvery with his disciples at the dry river bed .
Due to the scorching heat the sand was very hot .
Swamy Ramanuja looking at his Acharyar just falls at his lotus feet like an uprooted tree unmindful even in the burning sand .
The Acharyar does not respond asking him to raise up The scene is watched by all his disciples
Suddenly , a disciple takes courage and comes before Acharyar Nambi .
Finding the suspense in supportable and provoked by impatience he raises his voice and submits !
Acharya Is this the way to treat a disciple ?
Won’t your holiness ask him to get up ?
Are these exactions of civilians between teachers and disciples ?
Is this a code of submission without any humanity I will not care for this absurd regulations ,
He swiftly raises his guru Swamy Ramanuja and hugs him to his body to take away the heat from the body which was lying in the burning sand .
The disciple was none other than Kidaambee Acchaan (Pranatharthiharan)
Kidambi Achan who appeared in the village “Kidambi” located between Kooram and Thiruputkuzhi near Kanchipuram in the year 1057 A.D.in the tamil month of Chithirai on Hasta Nakshatara day which happens to be today 05-05-2020 …
As Hastam is considered to be the star of Varadaraja Perumal, his parents named him “PRANATHARTHIHARAM”- as glorified by Thirukachi nambigal in the first sloka of Devaraja Ashtakam.
He was the nephew of Tirumala Nambi’s wife (Swamy Ramanujar’s maternal uncle’s wife) and was thus related to Swamy Ramanujar like Mudaliyandan Swamy who had both atma sambhandham and deha sambandham with Swamy Ramanujar.
He was one of the prominent disciples of Swamy Ramanujar who felt that acharyar kainkaryam was of utmost importance.
Like Kooratazhwan and Mudaliandan, Achan also was a simple, devoted, highly knowledgeable person and was well versed with Thiruvaimozhi and Visishtadvaita granthas and was conferred the title “Vedantha Udhayana Acharyar” by Swamy rAmanujar. Like Vaduga Nambi, he considered serving his acharyar as the most important privilege
Coming back to the divine pastime ….
Looking at the Tejas and the Acharyar bhakthi , Acharyar T Nambi feels glad that the sheer moment of the most painful anxiety and suspense to look for a confidant had arrived .
He looks at the deep devotion of the disciple to Swamy Ramanuja and replies ,
My child !!
I was searching for such a person who would look after Ramanuja with this dedication .
Looking now at KidaambiAcchaan !
With eyes beaming with approbation , Nambi declares …
My son !!
Now I appoint you as Swamy Ramanuja’s body gaurd and no one but yourself shall cook for Swamy Ramanuja and serve him all times .
.Nambi blesses Ramanuja and advises him not to go for bikshai from that day.
Kidaambhi Acchaan, thenceforth was called Madappalli Acchaan and learnt all the esoteric truths along with the thaligai preparations for Swamy Ramanuja and his disciples.
Kidaambhi Acchaan used to get many of his queries answered due to his close association . Swamy Ramanuja blesses KidaambiAcchaan with the rahasya meanings and initiates him with Hayagreeva upasana.
Later , knowing the series of events , the shocked sthanikar rushes to Swamy Ramanuja’s ashram .
He understands the greatness of Acharyar and feels ashamed for his cruel act.
He falls at his feet and asked for pardon. Swamy Ramanuja , magnanimous in his heart forgives him .
Adiyen Ramanuja dasan
Pics Credits : Google images
Videos : Uploaded in social media Thanks to the great devotees
Pilgrimage to Pandharpur near Sholapur in Maharashtra and having darshan of Lord Vittal is incomplete without mentioning the great devotee Pundalikan.
Pundalaikan who hailed from southern part of India undertook a pilgrimage to kasi along with his parents and family . As his old parents couldn’t withstand the long journey they camped on the banks of Bhima river in the present Pandharpur.
As there was no improvement in their fitness and due to their old age , they decided to stay there forever serving LORD and his devotees .
Pundalikan was a caring and obedient son .
Always in the service of his parents chanting the holy name he continued to start a fresh life being at this new place.
The Divine Name of ‘ Jai Jai Ramakrishna Hari Jai Jai Vasudeva Hari’ ever reverberating in this holy town made him swoon into…
Lord Sriman Narayana incarnated as Lord SRI RAMAR to personally demonstrate the world the teachings of Vedas and adhere to the path of DHARMA in all circumstances. Azhwars, acharyars, and innumerable saints and advanced devotees like Tyagarajar, Bhakta Ramadas, Kabirdas, Tulsidas, Kambar and countless worshipped Lord Rama who personally blessed them all…
. Our elders suggest us to read Srimad Ramayanam, especially the first sargam in Sundara kaandam for self realisation .
The great saint Swamy Nammazhwar in his emotional out pourings “Thiruvaimozhi 7-5 reveals “kaRpaar Ramapiraanai allaal maRRum kaRparO?…” meaning …
Why should anyone wish to learn anything but Sri Rama?
Sri Rama ruled the entire world from Ayodhya for 11,000 years and when he was reminded by Brahma through Dharmaraja to return to Sri Vaikuntam,
Lord Rama shed all the royal robes and walking barefoot from the royal palace, clad in pure white holding dharbha reached the banks of Sarayu to ascend to Sri Vaikuntam.
The Lord took everything (the Grass, the creeping ant, the living and non-living, everyone and everything, – both animate and inanimate- all that was born or created by Brahma- all that existed in His Ayodhya to the supreme position (moksham).
That was Lord SriRama so merciful and compassionate that He took ALL (irrespective of their jnanam, bhakti, knowledge, scholarship, or even an inclination to think of moksham) out of His own unlimited compassion .
Kulasekhara Azhwar confirms this in Peria Thirumozhi “ Andru Saraasarangalai Vaikunthathuku Yetri….”. Lord took the entire living and non-living thing to Sri Vaikuntam. Once again Mother Andal glorifies Lord Rama as “Manathukku Iniyaan”-the one who is dear to heart.
One is reminded with the divine incident when Sage Valmiki requests Narada to name a person who is known for having all the sixteen opulent qualities. Narada unhesitatingly replies that Lord Sri Rama, the Emperor of Ayodhya is the embodiment of all the sixteen qualities.
Among the sixteen great qualities
and .we humans get attracted to the quality of Daya(compassion) as it is only due to Lords mercy , our pile of sins are forgiven and thus redeemed from the cycle of birth and death.
Lord Rama exhibited this quality of dhaaya to many of the humans .
Ayodhya vaasis, Kakasuran, the rakshasa who attacked him in Panchavati , Kaikeyi and most of the characters in the Ramayana ….
It is said Once , Parvati devi questions ParamaShiva as to on whom he contemplates while meditating. ParamaShiva replied that he always keep chanting the most sacred naama of the Supreme Personality of Godhead.- the sweetest name RAAMA .
ParamaShiva emphasizes the importance of the innumerable names of the Lord composed by Bheesmacharyar known as Vishnu Sahasranama stotram.
Parvati devi out of motherly compassion questions Parama Shiva as to what is the alternative if a person is not able to chant the entire thousand names of the Lord.
ParamaShiva answers that uttering the holy name of SRI RAMA will bestow the benefit of reciting the entire thousand names of Lord Sri Hari.
Such is the power of RAAMA NAAMAM.
Sri Rama Rama Rameti, Ramey Ramey Manoramey; Sahasrenama tattulyam, Rama Nama Varanane
In Varanasi, ParamaShiva personally utters the Tharaka mantram in the ears of the person leaving this mortal body and ensures that the jiva atma attains moksham. When Bharata along with raja maatas and entire retinue met Sri rama in Chitrakoot, Bharata abuses his mother for her sinful action and seeks pardon from Lord .
Lord Rama chastises Bharata for accusing Mother Kaikeyi and remained untainted with her behaviour.
He showed the same respect to her. Indra’s son Jayantan was captivated by Mother Sita’s looks .
He took the form of a crow and while Lord Rama and Sitadevi were resting in Chitrakoot, he inflicted injury on Sita maata by perching her .
Lord Rama who was lying on Sitadevi’s lap was fast asleep, Mother Sita endured the pain without disturbing the Lord . But the evil Kakasuran took it as an advantage and continued with his evil act until Lord Rama got up.
Lord Rama was furious with Kakasuran and as he did not have Kodhandam with HIM at that time, HE took a grass, uttered Brahmastram and aimed at Kakasuran which chased him until he fell down on the same rock where Sita and Rama were resting.
Mother Sita out of compassion slowly turned him towards Lord Rama’s holy feet and made him seek refuge.
The most compassionate Lord, who is spared his life by defacing his eye.
Lord Rama’s daya gunam was exhibited. Spatik shila in Chitrakoot is the place where this incident took place. While in Panchavati, when 14000 rakshasas headed by Kara and Dhooshana attacked , Lord Rama killed everyone but spared one rakshasa as he donned a saree and escaped.
Lord Rama’s dhayaa gunam was so much that even though he knew him to be an enemy, he spared him because he was in woman’s attire! Lord Rama performed the final rites to Jataayu, the eagle king who fought valiantly with Ravana and tried to rescue Sita .
Lord Rama affectionately took the ailing Jatayu in HIS arms and conferred moksha .The holy place where Lord Rama completed his incarnation is glorified as Gupthar Ghat located in Faizabad about 15 kms from Ayodhya. Driving past the military areas in Faizabad roads really grand , we reached Gupthar Ghat in half an hour’s time from Ayodhya few years ago as a part of our Sri Rama Anu Yatra .
River Saruyu also known as River Gargha considered as Sage Vasishta’s daughter was very calm.
The bathing ghats at River Saruyu are meaningfully constructed and are well maintained. Few years back , as a part of our Sri Rama Anu Yatra , after purifying ourselves in the sacred waters and offering morning oblations, Adiyen was engaged in routine morning rituals when a group of devotees headed by Sri Gomadam Swami of Sri Rangam reached the banks of Sarayu .
Looking at us near the ghat, they chose to have bath in the same place. When we approached Swami to pay our respects, the revered swamin was delighted to know about our trip and blessed us.
He said that it was due to the divine will of the Lord that we drove all the way from Ayodhya to have holy bath in Saruyu at this place because usually devotees have bath in Ayodhya itself .
Swami mentioned about the greatness of Gupthar Ghat….
More details of this holy place at this appended link :
The month of ( March – April ) in tamil (Panguni ) is sacred as it is the appearance month of – Lord Ranganatha on Panguni Revathi and Goddess Sri Ranganayaki Thayar on Panguni Uthiram both occur during this month.
This is the only day on which the Divya Dampatis of Srirangam are seen together in Utsavam.
The Utsavam takes place at the royal court located at the western entrance of the great Temple of Lord Ranganatha.
Interestingly, this is the only entrance which does not have a Rajagopuram.
Incredibly Swamy Ramanuja chose this blessed day for reciting the wonderful hymns the Gadya Trayam- Saranagathi gadyam, Sriranga gadyam and Vaikunta gadyam, unambiguously outlining the doctrine of Surrender .
(SharaNagati-which is atma Vivaham) wedding of the jivAtma to the paramAtma.
On this day Panguni Uttaram , Swamy Ramanuja gathered all his disciples and approached the great Temple of Lord Ranganatha.
Our Paramacharya was greatly moved by the majestic sight of the Divya Dampatis beautifully decorated in Utsavam at the Royal Court .
As a result of this Anubhavam, Swamy Ramanuja poured out his heart in an extremely soulful, highly intimate, and deeply intense SharaNagati ( TOTAL SURRENDER ) in the Sharanagati Gadyam and the Sri Ranganatha Gadyam.
The most important and the oldest Brahmotsavam called as “Adi Brahmotsavam” is performed during this month for 10 days and culminates on the next day of Panguni Uthiram.
During this brahmotsavam, Lord Ranganatha marries Kamalavalli Nachiyar of Uraiyur divyadesam.
Many devotees make it a point to have darshanam of Lordships on this day specially to have kataksham by Divine Parents .
Few days before Panguni Uthram(when Asilesha star is in ascendant), Lord Namperumal visits Goddess Kamalavalli Nachiyar at Uraiyur and marries the princess..
And , only on this day, Perumal gives darshan with Kamalavalli Thayar at Uraiyur for one full day.
Incidentally this is the place where our great Thiruppan Azhwar appeared .
On the 9th day of Brahmotsavam, the serthi (divine union) takes place at Srirangam.
On this day alone, Namperumal gives darshan along with Ranganayaki Thayar.
An interesting event cherished as ” Pranaya Kalagam Uthsavam ” takes place on Panguni Uthiram day morning and in the night , Gadyathrayam (threee gadyams) are recited in presence of the Supreme Lordships which is followed by Thirumanjanam (Holy abhishekam) to Namperumal and Ranganayaki Thayar .
Thirumanjanam is performed for 18 times reminding us of Swamy Ramanujar’s visits to Thirugoshtiyur. which are sequel to this sweet visit.
Our Mother Sr Ranganayaki comes to know of LORDs visit to Uraiyur nachiyar and gets upset. ( a vatsalya bhava )
The dramatic events on the Panguni Uthiram day unfold as Sri Ranganachiyar vents her Pranaya Kobam on Lord Namperumal and how Lord pacifies her and how in the end the divya dampathis join together to bless the devotees makes this festival a feast to the soul .
In the morning hours , Lord aware of Goddess mood goes around the four mada streets without any musical instrument being played ( Nadaswaram ) to collect kanikai ( gifts ) from devotees and thus gives darsanam to everyone .
The devotees are given an opportunity to serve Rajadhirajan (Lord of the Universe) with offerings . He stops at every house asking His devotees to support Him when He faces the queen Goddess Sri Ranga Nachiyar.
With the temple elephant (Andal) leading the way followed by the vedic pundits reciting dhivya prabhandha goshti LORD enters the temple and walks towards the sanctorium (sannidhi) of Goddess (Thayar) after literally moving around for three hours around the prakarams.
When Sri Ranga Nachiyar understands that Lord Ranganatha coming towards Her, the temple doors are shut.
For the next couple of hours, Pranaya Kalagam Uthsavam (household quarrel between the Lord and His consort) takes place that is wonderfully enacted by Arayar swamy..
The conversations between Namperumal and Ranganayaki Thayar are communicated through Arayar swami (for Namperumal) and through Pandari swami (for Ranganayaki Thayar) and they never face each other during this kalagam Utsavam .
The Lord pleads innocence and tries to appease the goddess in many ways but all his submission is out rightly rejected .
Few questions asked by Goddess make this utsavam very interesting …
Goddess questions Lord about his scratch marks on His Thirukkazuthu (neck) and reason for His Thirukkangal (eyes) becoming so red.
She also asks why His Thiruman kappu ( Tilak ) and His Thirukkuzal (hair) are all messed up.
She also goes on to ask Him why His Thiruvadharam (lips) are white and ……
why He has kungumappoo (Saffron powder) all over his Thirumeni (body),
His ThiruvadigaL (lotus feet) are red.
Hence, She was very unhappy because of HIS indifference to her .
The Lord out of divine love responds back to each question.
My dear …. Listen …
Being the protector of the universe (Jagadhrakshakan), riding the horse in the night and fighting against all evil forces to protect my devotees I had to be awake and thus the eyes have become red.
These Hair locks are messed up because of the fierce winds which faced me while I was galloping on the horse.
And listen dear ….
This Thiruman kappu had dissolved because of the harsh sun rays during my horse ride
And my lips are white because i was fighting against the asuras (demons) with single pointed concentration
My neck was scratched by those thorns while I was riding through thick forests to fight the same Asuras.
Lord further continues .. my .dear Listen , these legs were red because I had to ride the horse with the feet tightly hooked in the stirrup and finally this kungumappoo is all over my body because the Devathas were happy and praised us after the victorious campaign by showering me with flowers.
Thus, Lord submits to Goddess that He was late because of all the battles he had to wage with the Asuras and due to this calamity he had lost the ring in the river Kollidam while returning.
And had to get a new ring and some flowers before he meets Her.
This caused Him to be late.
Goddess is still not convinced and refuses all His gifts and flowers and commands him to never come inside and return back to Uraiyur where HE had been a couple of days ago.
Lord Namperumal with a very innocent look replies saying that He doesn’t know the place called Uraiyur and has never been there. Ranganayaki Thayaar asks the Lord to prove His statements.
To prove his innocence Lord offers to put His hands in a vessel full of snakes ,
cross any ocean of Goddess choice ,
and offered to promise on His devotees that He has never seen Uraiyur.
Sri Ranga Nachiyar rebukes HIS explanations. She replies /.
He, the one who sleeps on a bed of Adhi Sesha ( Serpent bed ) would never be harmed by any snakes. He, the one who lies in the great milk ocean (ThiruppArkadal) and for whom the river Yamuna parted to let Him through as baby Krishna will have no problem crossing any ocean.
Also, HE, whose lotus feet are sought after by all His devotees would never be betrayed by them. Unmindful , she exhibits her annoyance of Pranayakalpa by throwing milk, curd, butter and flowers on Him .
Lord Ranganatha now pleads innocently then says that He has come to meet Her after going through such difficulties and She is not letting Him in. He says He feels very depressed and embarrassed as She shut the door in His face. The Lord says – “andha avamanam umakku andri yamakku illai” meaning “this embarrassment is not for me but for you.”
Seeing the Lord is feeling very sad, our great Nammazwaar, acts as the mediator and approaches mother Sri Ranganayaki and says that if the supreme Lord and Goddess are upset against each other, then that would be the end of all known universe (Pralayam).
He requests Mother and prays that the Lord is for all and She has to understand that He is sought after by all and so She should be able to let Her Azhagiya MaNavalan go to His devotees too as well for granting their prayers and uplift them finally So, He humbly requests that Sriranganachiyar forgive the Lord and allow Him to enter Her premises.
Goddess Ranganayaki understands Nammazwars reasoning and commands Her assistants to let Her Lord enter inside. Lord Ranganatha and Ranganayaki come together and exchange garlands, Kasturi Thilakam, turmeric and necklaces making a benchmark of a divine couple .
As soon as the door is opened, Lord Azhagiya Manavalan is delighted and rushes in to be with His consort. A beautiful scene transpires here.
The Lord does not go immediately to our Sri Ranganayaki sannidhi . But rather goes to the mudhal mandapam and stands there, as if to ascertain whether our Thayar has really accepted and forgiven him.
Lord sends his vastram across to Thayar, which is accepted by the Thayar. After this the Lord then directly heads towards and Thayar Sannidhi and then he seats directly across Sri Ranganayaki Thayar.
Now our Aranganathan looks at our Lokamatha Thayar’s eyes directly as if to ask “why did you make me go through this struggle” and Thayar in turn asks him “Why did you go away without telling me”.
At this point of time other than the Sri Ranganayaki’s Archakas and our Sriranganathan’s Archakas, no one is allowed to be present.
Thus sweet conversation takes place between our Lord Aranganthan and Ranganyaki Thayar as it would take place between any husband and wife.
After they have talked for a long time, our Azagiya manavalan asks Thayars permission to go and complete the Panguni uthram thirunal as several devotees are waiting.
Thayar replies that how can she let him without having performed any upacharam. She then gets delicious and sumptuous “Akkara adasil” ( Sweet pudding ) prepared for him, with copious amount of milk, rice, dhal ( lentils ) , jaggery and lots pure ghee.
Both our Lordships now grace together and have the delicious “Akara adisil” ! The happiness of the Lord and Thayar can be seen in the eyes of lord who cannot take his eyes away from the Thayar! After this beautiful sight, the lord then decides to head towards the beautifully renovated Panguni Uthram mandapam. As soon as our Azagiya manavalan reaches the mandapam in the afternoon, our Thayar immediately, but silently and surreptitiously enters the mandapam as if she doesnt want anybody to talk about or ask her about what had happened .
After this the Lord and Ranganayaki Thayar give darsanam to several devotees who have thronged to see them. It has to be mentioned that here only the Thayar is adorned with a garland and not then Lord himself!
Also, Namperumal doesn’t face the audience but looks uninterruptedly at Thayar.
The recitation of the Gadhya Thrayam begins at about 11 P.M. . Those heavenly chants fill the air with beatitude and immense happiness. At this time the whole srirangam is very festive and people make sweets and savories as if there is a marriage in their own house.After all, it is a happy and beautiful unification between the Royal couple! The Gadhya Thrayam starts with the chant of “Vaikunta Gadhyam” and then proceeds with the “Sri RangaGadhyam” and at last ends with the beautiful chant of the “Sarangadhi gadhyam”!
Lord Namperumal (Sri Ranganathar) and Peria pirattlar (Sriranga nachiar) are seated together. Lord (naMperumAL) is standing majestically as usual and more beautiful and graceful today due to the compassionate looking pirAtti and is enjoying the beauty of Her Lord without taking Her eyes off Him even for a second This was the right opportunity for LokaAcharyar Swami Ramanuja to ask for favors from our DIVINE PARENTS.
He submits to the LOTUS FEET through his divine outpourings Gadyatrayam. Swamy Ramanuja worshipping them, submits his deep fear of samsara (association with the body in a cycle of births) and begs the Lord to save him. Swamy Ramanuja surrendered his all to the Lord and begged Him to be his sole savior. In the Three Gadyaas, Swamy Ramanuja’s prayed swamies innermost feelings of deep devotion to the Lord break all restrictions and flow freely towards the Lord and His consort.
These are prima facie a spontaneous outburst of devotional experience and not coldly labored compositions. The inner voice of the devotee addresses Sri and the Lord and they do reply clearly through the same inner voice.
In the Saranagati gadya, Swamy Ramanuja first addresses Sri as the mother of the Universe, as his own mother, and as the loving consort of his Lord, and seeks her intercession on his behalf. This is itself a saranagati addressed to the mother.
Happy at being addressed this, Sri replies ‘So be it’; “let your prapathi bear the proper fruit of being accepted as a devoted servant” The commentators have it that this assurance is not only for the Acharya but for all his spiritual progeny. The boon that Lord granted to Swamy Ramanuja applies to his spiritual heirs. It is worth noting that once he gets the assurance from Sri of her sure mediation, he addresses himself directly to the Lord seeking Him as the sole savior.
The LokAcharya then addresses the Lord speaking of His incomparable glory, “His immense wealth, His power, His retinue, His divine weapons, His beautiful ornaments, His loving consorts, of His infinite compassion and other admirable qualities words which are a rhapsody of devout fervor which can come only from the very depth of a realized soul. Swamy Ramanuja holds out prapathi as the highest message he had for his followers.
The Sriranga gadyam is a shorter piece and is essentially the same as the Saranagati gadyam.
It is addressed directly to Sriranganatha.
are the words of the acharya.
To the seeker of salvation who has taken to the path of Prapathi, it is essential that he should spend his time in devoted service of the lord; in serving his devotees; by meditating on Him and singing His praise; by repeatedly uttering the Dvaya mantra (this is an enjoyable and sweet pastime).
The acharya gives expression to all these, briefly, in confidence to the lord at Srirangam. His intention is that this short text may be repeated easily in the presence of the Lord by devotees intent on the fruit prayed for.
Immensely pleased , Lord assures Swamy Ramanuja that He and all his disciples will be surely uplifted for attaining the paramaporul Moksha for sure .
Later, Thirumanjanam to Namperumal and Thayar are performed for 18 times. This signifies Sri Ramanujar’s visit to Thirugoshtiyur to learn the dwayam mantra artham. All the upacharams are performed for 18 times.
Later, saatrumarai goshti is done at Udayavar (Ramanujar’s )sannidhi in the early hours. At about 7 A.M. the next day, Perumal reluctantly leaves thayar and goes back on Goratham.
After all this, the Lord then requests Thayar’s permission to go and complete the remaining procession.
At this request, our Ranganayaki thayar’s face drops and looks downcast, which indicates her reluctance to part with the Lord at this point of time.
But , thayar then mentions that First she will leave and return back to her Moolasthanam after which the Lord can start.
This shows the patience, forbearance and the humility of our beloved Thayar.
The Lord then starts to leave towards the “Goratham (Chariot), before which he peeps into Sri Ranganyaki Thayrs sannidhi, as if to take a glimpse of his beloved wife and say “Bye” before proceeding . After this the Lord starts for the procession.
Anywhere in the world a woman has to undergo lot of troubles and hardships and still put up a smile to make everyone in her family happy.
On Panguni Uthiram day, only Thayar sannidhi is kept open and it is not possible to have Sri Ranganathar(moolavar) darsanam on that day.
All adiyars know that the Lord and Thayar are above all such domestic quarrels taking place in our lives all the time.
We also know that He is the fountainhead of all things in the universe and there is nothing like He should be going after several women etc. when He himself is paramporul ( The ultimate ) .
Secondly the big question will Thayar ever quarrel with the Lord? So what is the significance ??
Elders clarify that the significance of all this drama is that Namperumal and Thayar are doing a play act to demonstrate to ordinary mortals like us how to run the household with harmony in the face of upsets. They also show the deep love , mercy and compassion true ladies have and why we have to give the ladies great respect and exalted position in our society.
Azhwar describes Srirangam as the abode of the supreme Lord who had sixteen thousand devi’s (as he married all of them in His Krishnavataram by their deep devotion and request ).
When he has already taken sixteen thousand consorts which Sri Rukmini Devi whole heartedly accepted, where is the question of getting upset about one Kamalavalli nachiyar of Uraiyur .
Our Perumal is Paramatma and the jivatmas represented by Thayar are all wedded to Paramatma with Thayar doing the purushakaaram(bridge between Perumal and the fallen souls)
Andal nachiyar explains:- “Peyyu ma mukil pol vanna, un pechum seikaium engalai Maiyal erri mayakka un mukam maya mandiram than kolo”
Hey, dark skinned Lord, your words, acts and your innocent looking face are all designed to cast a spell over us. The Lord will always cast his spell over His devotees to protect them. And Maya Jagan Mohini Thayar always assists Him in his spell!
When the Lord knows that Nachityar is upset with him, He is planning to pacify her indicating thereby that all of us should try earnestly to take care of the ladies’ concerns.
In this entire drama, what stands out is the “Paraspara Anyonyam” of the Divya Dampathis.
When Thayar is angry Lord understands and adopts a seemingly submissive posture. And Thayar relents when overlooking the factthat it is the only day in a year she is with Him and He has been to another nachiyar.
She sets an example of kindness and forgiveness for all the womenfolk.
When Thayar allows Lord to enter Her Sannadhi, He at first stops at first mantapam and sends His Vastram to her. He does not rush in all the way. Thayar also understands His intention and accepts the vastram.
She knows He will be hungry and gets a sumptuous Akkara Adisil ( sweet pudding) prepared for Him. In these days of hurried life when both the partners sometime go to work, can you imagine such understandings .
She silently follows Him so that the devotees do not smell any difference between them! It is truly amazing that Divya Dhampathis had set examples which are relevant even today………
Let Lord Ranganatha protect us
Let Shri Ranganachiyar bless us always …
Sri Ranga MangaLa nidhim karuna nivAsam Sri Venkatadhri SikharAlaya KaaLamegham Sri Hastigiri Siksrojvala Paarijatham Sreesam namAmi Sirasa yadhusaila dheepam Seeking the Lotus feet of Narayana
Nathamuni already in that bliss imagined that Lord Rama with his brother Lakshmana and Mother Sita is have come to grace him .He fainted at a place in a divine bliss and reached Lord’s abode on an Ekadasi day.
Few hundred years ago Gangaikonda Chozhapuram a place in Tamil Nadu , was ruled by the Cholas who were active patrons of the arts , poetry, drama, music and dance . The Chola kingdom grew into an extensive and well-knit empire, efficiently organized and administered by the King .
One fine day two courtesans from other kingdom came to meet the King for his generosity in encouraging their talents . One of them could sing according to a pattern called deva‐gana (celestial mode) and the other could sing in the normal method manushya gana (human mode). Each thought their music was the best and excelled the other. Their objective of having an audience with the King was to settle the dispute between them as the King was well versed in those forms of art .
The king summoned his royal artists and ordered the council to meet, for them to perform . …
When one thinks of the holy place Pandharpur , mind races to have darshan of Lord Vittala and when the quest to know about his devotees begin , the biography of the great saint Santh Tukaram brings tears .
Santh Tukaram appeared during the year 1608 A.D in a small village Dehu in Poone district which is about 41 kms from Ahobila Mutt, Pune . and seven miles from another important place Alandi—the place honored by the Samadhi of another great saint Jnaneshwar.
Tukaram from his childhood worshiped Lord Vittala of Pandharpur.
His Elders constructed a small temple of their own and dedicated it to Lord Vittala and family members, since many generations, had participated in the ‘Wari’ of Pandharpur, i.e., the annual pilgrimages to Pandharpur on the eleventh day of the month of Ashadh (June-July) and again on the eleventh day of the month of Kartik (October-November).
When Tukaram was about seventeen years, he lost his parents and about that time, his elder brother left the village and went to Varanasi seeking spiritual salvation.The next few years, were almost cyclonic in their effect for Tukaram.
Taking advantage of his state of mind, the debtors would not repay whatever was due to him and the creditors began to trouble him for the money due to them.
Tukaram tried his hand in several ventures of trade and came back either with empty hands or with a loss as he was a man of simplicity and humane to the core .
He was robbed of everything by confidence-tricksters who gave him gilt brass ornaments in exchange for all the money he had with him.
He was a simple person who could not see others unhappiness people .One occasion, returning home, he came across a poor man along with his family starving. He could not see their plight . He just gave away the profit as well as the principal which his wife had borrowed for some petty business.
Seeing his behaviour , Tukaram was not entrusted with anything valuable when he went far from home.
Tukaram’s wife Jijabai helped him again and again to set up a small shop in his own village, but she was always convinced by Tukaram that serving all the beings , no matter it was fellow human beings , animals , insects etc was his only goal .
Tukaram used to sit in the shop doing kirtan and being very kind and honest to his customers. As usual due to his compassion to his fellow humans , he became bankrupt very soon as he never thought of himself and family .
Sant Tukaram saw Lord Panduranga in all creatures. Once he was asked to guard a corn field. He liked this job as it did not hinder with his habit of Namakirtan on Lord Panduranga. The birds would see human presence and fly away without touching the corns.
But as Tukaram got immersed in his abhangs, the birds started to feed on the corns. Seeing Panduranga in all the birds, he, instead of scaring the birds away, fed the birds with more corns from the field that he was supposed to guard, thus gaining the wrath of the owner.
During the years 1629 and 1630, the country was facing severe famine. It was most difficult period The promissory notes dues for the family became dead letters of credit as nothing could be realised during the famine.
Tukaram lost his people and cattle .Very upset he went into the Bhamnath forest nearby. For fifteen days he stayed there meditating on the Supreme Lord without any basic needs .
He realised the true knowledge with his penance . The revelation made Tukaram more aware of the purpose of his life .He slowly withdrew his love for his household, wife and relations.
He gathered all the promissory notes and threw them into the Indrayani river, in spite of the protests of his relatives.
He reconstructed the temple which had fallen into disrepair and began to spend his entire time in Naama Kirtan. His mind was now steady fast with total surrender .
As a result of his whole-hearted devotion , Tukaram was rewarded with Guru Upadesh.
As elders say , SathGuru visited Tukaram in a dream. Tukaram describes this, as the greatest event of his life, thus
“The Sadguru came to me in a dream and was really very kind to me, though I had done nothing to deserve it. He met me when I was going to the river for a bath and placed his hand on my head and blessed me and advised me to do Japa …….of Jai jai Ramakrishna Hari. Tukaram’s joy knew no bounds.
Tukaram began to spend his life more and more in devotional practices, study of the works of great saints Jnanadev, Namdev and Ekanath thus getting inspired to pen Abhangs
Whenever Tukaram began to perform Kirtan, people began to flock in large numbers considering him as a realised saint and give him all the respect.
This was resented by a small number of people who sent a report against Tukaram to Rameshwar Shastri regarded as a learned Scholar during those times . Due to his standing in society , he forced Tukaram to stop all those activities which will pull crowds due to his kirtans .He instructed him to stop penning abhangs and, that he had already made, should be drowned in the nearby Indrayani river.
Tukaram held all elders in great reverence,. He was sad . He immediately brought out of his home all the works , bound them together, tied a big stone round the bundle, and threw it into the river in presence of the village elders .
Tukaram’s traducers, who were jealous of him, were greatly pleased. Tukaram did not mind their taunts. He thought , was it a big fault for merely, singing the praise of Lord in his abhangs as advised by Lord himself .
Dejected , Tukaram sat on the bank of the river Indrayani praying to Lord Panduranga to forgive him and show some way out as Naama sanKirtan was his breath . For thirteen long days he thus sat unmoved without water, food or sleep seeking Lords guidance .
On the fourteenth day, one of Tukaram’s followers, in a dream, saw Lord Panduranga advising him to fetch the Abhangs composed by Sant Tukaram floating on the surface which was intact.” .
Tukaram was moved by the mercy of Lord and thus in ecstasy he delivered Abhangs blaming himself for doubting the word of Lord and putting Him to so much trouble of having to preserve the poems in water for thirteen days.
By this divine incident, Tukaram’s name and fame spread far and wide. Materially he remained poorer but spiritually richer . He was always in Naama sanKirtan and he earned nothing.Whatever LORD arranged was his meal and wherever he moved he comforted himself under trees , ashrams , temples no matter where he was . It was Naama sankirtan always .
The great Maharashtra King Shivaji was a great admirer always supporting his devotional services .
Tukaram always advocated Saguna Bhakti in the form of repeating His Name and in the form of singing LORD’s praises. He said Bhakti was the higher form of devotion and service was even higher than Mukti.
Many wonderful events have occurred in Sant Tukaram’s life. His fame spread throughout the land, but he himself remained unaffected by all that. He knew the exact time when he would depart from this world. He grew weary of living and thought his time was being wasted in attending to the wants of the body when it should have been better utilised in Kirtan, Bhajan and praise of Vithoba.
He prayed to the Lord that he might be taken away soon to His lotus feet where he could remain worshiping Him continuously for ever and anon.
Once Tukaram’s told his friends that he would be going away to meet Vittala in a few days. No one believed his words .Finally that day arrived . He called all the villagers for a Akhanda sankirtan . The night was splendid . Many came to hear his kirtans and the last kirtan before was memorable in many respects as the subject was Harikatha.
Tuakaram continued .
.my brothers and sisters …
“Harikatha is like the union of three holy rivers—
Lord, the devotee and His holy Name.
By participating in this kirtan one’s sins are burnt and one is purified.
And my children ….
Even the pebbles lying around here become holy and fit to be worshiped.
“Though you all bear the responsibilities of family life, never ever forget our Lord Panduranga.
Never forget to worship Him and sing his praises.
Pandharpur is very near you.
It is the Vaikuntha on this earth.
Please Go and worship the Lord there. It is my experience that the Name of the Lord alone will save you at the time of death.
All of you have protected and maintained me in your midst for such a long time. I can never repay you and I am very grateful to you.
I shall ever pray to Vithoba to bless you all and take you all to heaven after this life. This is my goodbye to you all and this is my advice to you.
I prostrate before you and beseech you with tears never to forget the Name of the Lord. Always do Kirtan and Bhajan of Lord Narayana.
Do not be anxious about your material welfare.
The Lord will look to it.
This is all ephemeral. The Lord’s Name is eternal.
Depend on it only, live and sing the praises of the Lord.
Do Japa of Ramakrishna Hari and He will always save you.
This is my last request and advice to you.”
The Lord’s Name is eternal rest all is ephemeral
Thus passed away one of the great saints of Maharashtra with Lord’s Name of his lips, singing praises of Him.
Tukaram left this world during the year 1649the second day after the Holi festival . Every year the day of his disappearance day ( March 11th 2020 this year ) popularly known as Bheej is remembered at the banks of the river dehu .
Thousands of devotees assemble near to this holy place
This place is located inside Military area. We were fortunate to be here unexpectedly during our Pandharpur yatra few years back .
The vehicles had to be parked before one enters the military area . From the parking area, the temple is about 3-4 kilometres.
Most of the devotees join singing bhajans holding Tulasi pots on their hand, some playing tambura , kartaal etc.
It is usual practice of the devotees to fast on that day and have prasadam only after taking Sant Tukaram’s blessings.
Along with us, other devotees joined and within no time, the bus was jam packed. The bus was however parked at a distance of about one kilometer. The entire place was charged up in devotional fervor.
A devotee was singing Abhangs and was so glad to share the meanings and the essence of the various teachings of Santh Tukaram which am reproducing ….
Tukaram Maharaj prays to LORD to grant him a boon of being small as a small ant ……………gets a grain of sugar to eat.
A giant elephant is made to bear pricking of the weapon by its controller.
Tukaram Maharaj says, he who has a great ego undergoes great troubles.
He asks us to understand the benefit of not having an ego.
There is no happiness greater than the peace of mind.
Everything else causes sorrow.
Therefore make your mind peaceful to see the inner light.
One with a mind agitated by anger and lust has to suffer ensuing restlessness.
A peaceful mind is free from such sufferings.
One, who is able to control his sense-organs, is capable of forgiving others.
Such a person gains recognition and establishes his relation with Lord Vittala.
Even if a huge agricultural field has been inherited then that won’t give harvest unless it is cultivated.
Tukaram Maharaj says, one should understand this fact without burning one’s heart.
Pandavas were sent to exile in the woods but they held Lord Vittala in their hearts. Pralhada was tortured by his father but still he meditated on Narayana in his mind. Sudama, a brahmin, was afflicted by poverty but he did not forget Narayana. Tukaram Maharaj says,
O Lord Vittala we should not forget you even at the time of being under the mountain of miseries…
A donkey that is made to have bath in a sacred river does not become a horse. He, who does not have a pure mind, does not listen to any good advice.
Even if a sweet juice is fed to a snake, there won’t be any reduction in its poison.
There are many who proclaim themselves as saints. How can we accept unless we see their behaviour.
There appears a stream of water only for a while after it rains.
Later not a drop of water is seen.
A particle of snow appears like a diamond as long as it does not meet a hammer.
Dogs barking at an elephant develop pain in their mouths. The elephant is least affected by this.
Monkeys mocking at tiger invite disaster for their lives.
Tukaram Maharaj says, he who mocks at saints will lose his face.
A monkey puts its hand in a vessel containing peanuts. After taking peanuts in its hand it cannot take out its hand as the mouth of the vessel is not big enough.
The monkey for the sake of handful of peanuts does not go away and is caught.
A parrot sits on a string laid by the hunter. The string inverts its position and so is the parrot. Due to high voltage fear the parrot firmly grasps the string and forgets that it has two feathers to fly away.
The parrot is caught ultimately. Tukaram Maharaj says that it is not surprising if creatures without brains behave like this. It is surprising to see human beings forgoing their greatest interest for a pittance.
Earn money through an honest business.
Spend money for noble cause by maintaining equanimity of mind. Work for others’ welfare. Dont say harsh words for others. Consider others’ ladies like your mother and sisters.
Show kindness to all beings.
Rear cows and other cattle.
Make possible arrangements for drinking water at remote places for quenching the thirst of people.
Dont harm others.
He, who abides by the above teaching, spreads good name of his parents all around.
The virtue of renunciation that is required for realising Panduranga is also acquired through such actions..
A creeper of nectar will bear fruits of nectar.
This will also result in continuous rise in the seeds of nectar.
Like this association with good people results in all round increase of happiness.
From a seed originates a tree.
From a tree countless seeds originate.
Who would like to be crucified on a cross of sandalwood? Similarly none would like to remain tied in the chain of gold.
Similarly whatever knowledge one gains is a burden if that raises one’s ego.
A dead tiger filled with stuff appears like a tiger.
Actually it is not a tiger. A coin with gold plating is not a coin of gold.
This fact is clear if it is observed closely. A monkey dances as per the training of its master, it does not have any talents of its own.
Tukaram Maharaj says, he who keeps stock of absurd virtues has to suffer embarrassment.
The best worship of Lord Vittala can be performed by the mind. There is no need of instruments and implements for performing a puja.
The purpose of worship is to understand the mind, to understand the truth.
The final benefit or loss will be caused by the mind.
Mind is the seed that gives birth to the tree of action.
He, who has merged his identity with the Lord Vittala,
cannot see others suffering. Tukaram Maharaj says, making the mind calm is the true worship.
Tukaram Maharaj says, let us be equanimous in happiness and misery.
There is no discrimination for devotees in the eyes of the Almighty. He is waiting for those who have devotion in their minds.
He eats coarse grain offered by Vidura.
He protects Prahalada in the house of demons.
He helps Rohidas to dye clothes.
He helps Kabir to weave cloth.
He helps Sajan Butcher selling meat.
He helps Sawata Mali in petty agricultural operations.
He helps Narhari in performing chores of a goldsmith.
He helps Chokhamela for grazing cattle.
He drives the chariot of Arjuna.
He eats with great love dry food offered by Sudama.
In the homes of milkmen he does the task of maintaining cows
He acts as a doorkeeper for King Bali. He repays loan of Yekoba.
He takes birth as a human being for the sake of Rishi Amba.
He drinks a glass of poison for Meerabai.
He becomes a low breed person to pay off loan of Damaji.
He carries earth for Gora Kumbhar.
He repays loan of Narsi Mehta.
He is still standing on a brick for Pundalik.
Parents of Pundalik are great to have such a great son.
Thanking Supreme Lord for the wonderful company , we joined the ocean of ecstasy relished by great devotees of Lord Vittala …
Tukaram’s abhangs was being played everywhere through the sound systems.
There is another arc with the beautiful words “ JNAN,BHAKTI,VAIRAGYA TUKARAM”. The crowd reminded us of Brahmotsava celebrations in Tirumala.
Amidst the sea of devotees more than a lakh of devotees ready to witness that miracle which happens every year at noon.
A big cut-out of Lord Pandurangan from a distance attracted everyone’s attention.
On the way, we could have sparsham of Tukaram’s padhukas which were placed in a palanquin. Unmindful of the scorching heat and clasping each other’s hands we proceeded to Tukaram’s Samadhi mandir. On the left side, we have darshan of Indrani river which was witness to the various incidents in Tukaram’s life flowing peacefully.
Many pilgrims were purifying themselves in the water. This river which flows past Alandi, brings Jnanadev’s blessings too along with her to this place. Pilgrims who have a holy dip are benefited with Jnanadev and Tukaram Maharaj’s grace.
Sant Tukaram like Nammazhwar was the only person who left to SriVaikuntam with this mortal body. Elders reveal Lord arranged Garuda vahanam and singing the praises of the Lord , while everyone was watching, Sant Tukaram embarked on the Garuda vahanam and ascended to Srivaikuntam.
He promised his followers that on every disappearance day which falls on the second day after Holi ,popularly known as Bheej, he would come from Vaikuntam exactly at noon in the form of a gentle breeze to this place and bless the devotees. Because of the gentle breeze, the leaves of the tree which was a witness to the incident gently move and the leaves fall.
To enable the assembled devotees who stand far away from the tree, the temple authorities have tied a red flag as an indication.
When the breeze gently blows, the red flag moves which can be witnessed by everyone.
The assembled devotees continuously sing the abhangs and as noon approaches, the fervor and intensity of the bhajans increases. Words cannot describe the sight.
One has to personally witness this incident.
We were there … to receive Our Bhaktha Tukaram’s blessings …
What a journey it was ..
Sadhu Satsangh ki Jai ..
Bhaktha Tukaram ki Jai
Adiyen Ramanuja dasan
Pics/ Videos :
Credits to all Lord Vittala devotees who uploaded in social media /Google pics
Swamy Parasara Bhattars Thirunakshatram ( Appearance day ) is celebrated on ( Vaikasi Anusham ) in a grand way all over the world. Parasara bhattar and Vedavysa appeared as divine twins in the month of Vaikasi in the star of Anusham to Swamy Kurathazhwan and Andal as a blessing token of Aravani Prasadam of Namperumal.
The Divya Dampathis themselves acted as parents for Swamy parasara bhattar, as he was born after his mother, Sri Andal, partook “Prasadam” from the Sri Rangam temple .
Swamy parasara bhattar was the disciple of the genius Acharyar Swamy Embar and was graced by JagathAcharyar swamy Ramanujar from his childhood.
The whole srivaishnava community glorifies Swamy Parasara Bhattar for his unstinting devotion to Namperumal. ( Lord Sri Ranganathar of Srirangam ) .
Bhattar could never move away from Namperumal’s radiance , and Lord Namperumal could also not bear…
Pilgrimage to Pandharpur near Sholapur in Maharashtra and having darshan of Lord Vittal is incomplete without mentioning the great devotee Pundalikan.
Pundalaikan who hailed from southern part of India undertook a pilgrimage to kasi along with his parents and family . As his old parents couldn’t withstand the long journey they camped on the banks of Bhima river in the present Pandharpur.
As there was no improvement in their fitness and due to their old age , they decided to stay there forever serving LORD and his devotees .
Pundalikan was a caring and obedient son .
Always in the service of his parents chanting the holy name he continued to start a fresh life being at this new place.
The Divine Name of ‘ Jai Jai Ramakrishna Hari Jai Jai Vasudeva Hari’ ever reverberating in this holy town made him swoon into transcendental bliss .
Pundalikan was so concerned that he changed the course of the river so that it would pass by his hut to enable his parents for taking their daily bath .
Even today we can see the shape of this river looks like a crescent of moon and hence the river came to be known as “Chandrabhaga” river.
All compassionate Lord Krishna in Dwaraka, wanted the world to know about this great devotee Pundalikan who was serving his parents with utmost sincerity .
The cheerful obedience mixed with devotion attracted Lord personally to visit his hut to bless him. It was a direct meeting of the great Lord with his favorite devotee .
Lord arrived near his hut silently and was immersed in listening to his devotees Nama sankirtana.
Lord walked inside his hut like a normal man and looking at his devotee called him.
Pundalikan was engrossed in the Holy name and was serving his old parents by comforting their legs .
The voice was melodious …… unheard ….
My son !!
Lord once again called
Pundalik was in trance and that bliss he was already enjoying the holy name in his transcendental mood and hence he did not want to come out of that mood ..
and he did not want to disturb his old parents sleep as they too were engrossed in the Holy name ..
He attempted to whisper slowly his helplessness ,that he couldn’t come and receive the honorable guest due to his position .
He requested him to please wait .
He presumed that once his parents were fast asleep he could take leave from them and attend the respected guest .
He innocently requested the revered guest to rest .
Lord replied , I find only bricks around . Any way as desired by his devotee he just stood on a small brick which was lying nearby.
The demigod Indra to atone for his brahmahathi dosham immediately took the form of brick awaiting Lord’s arrival so that the Lord would place HIS lotus feet. The divine incident was happening at the great devotees hut.
Once he observed that his parents were fast asleep , he comforted them and looked around .
Pundalikan had a glance of the wonderful darshan .
Lord Krishna as Vitthala, standing on a brick, hands on hips, with a smile on his lips.
He scanned the lovely form further . His eyes were starving for that darshan .Torrent of tears flowed ..Speechless . His soul now rejoiced in pure love ..
His breath that was synchronized with the holy name could swim deep in that ocean of sheer bliss ..
My Lord !! Vittala…
Nothing more ..Let this remain with me .
..Oh ! Lord …
Ocean of Compassion … You came to see this worm …
LORD ! Please forgive me for asking you to stand on the brick ..
Pundalikan was inconsolable ….
Lord Panduranga, Lord Vittala the enchanter of the Universe, wearing ‘Makara Kundala’ (fish shaped ear stud) in his ears, …….
Peethambara (clad in yellow silk), wearing exquisite royal ornaments, a bewitching smile playing on His lips and having the insignia of Goddess Lakshmi on His chest, two palms on His hips was looking at Pundalikan ..
Pundalik was overwhelmed and touched .
He submitted to LORD for HIM to stay there forever.
Lord with a enchanting smile replied ..
My dear son !
Now and forever will I remain on this brick standing to see all my children seeking me…
Rukmini ,SAtyabhama arrived later , assumed the same posture of Lord and blessed Pundalikan.
AT the behest of Pundalikan, Lord resides here and gives darshan to millions of devotees . As Lord stands on Vittu(brick) , HE is glorified as as Vittalan.
The place where the Lord stands is the present temple.
The Saints like Namdeo, Dnyaneshwar to Tukaram wove their life around Vitthala and saw in Vitthala their brother, father, friend and a compassionate Lord who could bless them with ultimate salvation.
“Vittala ” is our Compassionate Lord who mingled with all the devotees by taking various roles like a cobbler, barber, servant, potter, gardener thus assisting his devotees in household chores and helping them in their own spiritual up liftment and seek salvation
Pundalikan and his parents attained Lord’s feet after the divine darshan . The Pundalika Temple is about half a km from the Vitthal Temple.
This temple marks the spot where Pundalika, the Lord’s devotee, spent the last years of his life and also is the place of his Samadhi. It is on the riverbank of Chandrabhaga.
Great Bhagavathas have composed wonderful Naama sankirtana which swoon even a rock to breath the holy name and reach HIS holy abode ..One such kirtan is presented below sung by Sri Kadyanallur Rajagopal feeds the soul with a grand feast of holy names .The lyrics is shared below for the feel …
Shanka Chakra Dhara Vaijayanthi Dara Pithambaradara Govardhanodhara Tulasimala Shobhita Gala Garuda Gamana Hari Pankaja Nabha Vittala Yere Pandhari Raya Mastaka Linga Swaroopa Linga
Roopa Banga Sajjana Sangha Yadukula Thilaka Manmatha Janaka Pathitha Pavana Dena Dayalo Vittala Yere Pandhari Raya
Sholingur is a small town in Vellore district in Chennai city in South India. Lord Narasimha temple and Hanuman temple are located on top of two separate hills in this town and are the most popular Sri Vaishnaivite temples in India.
Located about 90kms west of Madras (and about 25kms from Arakkonam and 40kms from Tiruttani), atop a hill on a single rock is the Lord Narasimha Divya Desam in Sholingur, also called Chozha-Simha-Puram and Thiru Kadigai.
The Yoga Narasimha Swamy temple is situated on this hillock is at a height of 750 ft, and there are 1305 steps. This is also referred to as UtheeCheerangam(North Srirangam).There are two temples of significance here- the Yoga Narasimha temple at Periya Malai (the big hill) and the Yoga Chathurbhuja Anjaneyar temple at Chinna Malai (the small hill). Bhaktha Anjaneya also was doing thapas (penance) here.
The Lord pleased with him gave His Shanku and chakram to him .This is the only place where Lord Anjaneya is giving darshan in sitting position as yoga Anjaneya adorned with sangu chakram in upper hands and with ,japa malai and counting with fingers on lower hands. Anjaneyars temple is just opposite to Lord Narasimha’s temple on a smaller hill.
After killing the demon named Hiranya, it is believed that Lord Narasimha reached Sholingur and settled down here. As he gave darshan to Sapta rishis(seven saints) for a kadigai time duration (24 minutes), the site is called as Kadigachalam.
This place was also called as Chola Simha Puram, which later became Sholinga Puram and ultimately to ‘Sholingur’.
The Lord Shri Yoga Narasimhar atop the Sholinghur hill is glorified as “AKKARAKANI” meaning sweetest fruit by Thirumangai azhwar.
At this holy place Sholingur , ( Ghatikachalam) there were two Sri Vaishnava brothers Swamy Periyappan and Siriyappan the descendants of Swami Mudaliyandan who were the nephews and disciple of Acharya Ramanuja.
They were well versed in sasthras . They were doing kainkaryam to the devotees of Lord Narasimhar . The great devotee Swamy Dhoddachar was born on auspicious star uthradasha to Siriyappan which falls on 20-02-2020 ( Today)
He learned Vedas and divya prabandam from Periyappan who was his acharya and mentor. Slowly with his steadfast devotion , He became an upasaka of Sri Sudarsanazwar.
He continued his upasana for twelve years Lord Sudarsana was pleased with his devotion and appeared before his devotee .
Lord said,” I am very much pleased with your devotion.
What do you want?”my child ….
Swamy Dhoddachar said,” I want to have darshan of Lord Nrusimhar .”
Sri Sudarsanazwar told him to follow him. He took him to a cave and showed him Lord Nrusimha’s deity with His upaya Nachimar Sridevi and Bhoodevi .
Swamy Dhoddachar was very happy to have darshan of Lord Nrusimha in yoga nishta pose in a calm and serene pose and christened Him as Akkarakani as described by our Azhwar ( Thirumangai Azhwar )
He decided to build a temple for the Lord and conduct all uthsavas and daily rituals.
King Achutha Devaraya who was related to Krishna Devaraya was ruling over Kanchipuram. He came to know about Sri Dhoddachar intention to build a temple to Lord Akkarakkani, (The Yoga Nrusimha.)
He came to Ghatikachalam and paid his obeisances to the great devotee Dhoddachar.
He rode on his favourite high breed horse and to honour Dhoddacharya he arranged to carry him on a pearl palanquin.
When they reached a village called Erumbi Achutha Devaraya’s horse suddenly fell on the ground and died.
Achutha Devaraya felt very sad to see this.
Swamy Dhoddachar saw this . He took out water from his Thirtha pathram and sprinkled it over the horse.
Presto ! The horse got up as if it woke up from sleep.
Achutha Devaraya was wonder struck to see this and he prostrated before acharya and thanked him immensely for giving new life to his horse.
He also gave Erumbi village and some other places nearby to him.
Dhoddachar built a temple for Lord Nrusimha with the help of his disciples and also built a tank which is called Thakkan Kulam.
He was now happy that his wish to build a temple was fulfilled.
He also made Thiruvabaranams (jewelery) to the Lord and started celebrating all the uthsavas with the help of his shisyas and Srivaishnavas.
He visited Kanchipuram “PeraruLaLa PerumaL” who was his favourite Deity regularly .
Every year he used to go to Kanchipuram on the third day of Brahmmothsavam when LORD VARADARAJAR PeraruLaLa perumal would give darshan on Garuda vahanam.
But one year he was indisposed and so was unable to go to Kanchipuram.
He prayed Lord for his darshan
On the day of garuda vahanam early morning he took a dip at thakkan kulam ( pond ) .
He felt very sad and prayed to Lord Devaraja at the bank of the tank chanting his Holy names .
Lord Devaraja was very much pleased with his deep devotion and he flew to Ghatikachalam on Garuda and gave darshan to his dear devotee .
Dhoddachar was overwhelmed with emotion and his eyes were filled with tears of joy and gratitude.
He prostrated before the Lord repeatedly and praised the Lord with five slokas which is known as Devaraja Panchakam.
Even now on Garuda vahana sevai day early morning when Lord Devaraja comes out of the entrance of the temple, he stops for a few minutes and He is covered by an umbrella to symbolize this incident marking the incident of LORD giving darshanam to his dear devotee .
There is a temple for Lord Devaraja on the bank of Thakkan kulam where the moolavar is giving Darshan on Garuda Vahanam which is a very rare sight.
On Vaikasi visakam day in this place Ghatikachalam Garudothsavam for utsava murthi is conducted with due respects to the devotee Dhoddachar .
Sundare sundaram mantram…….Sundare kim na sundaram…….
The fifth kaandam in Sriramayanam known as “SUNDARA KAANDAM” is the most popular kaanda. Unlike names of other kandams which are self explanatory, this kandam is known as “Sundaram-beautiful” as everything ..
-Hanumanji’s Rama bhakti, Sitadevi’s chastity, Srirama’s plight to rescue HER, their concern for each other, torments in samsaara are so beautifully described by maharishi. The characters of the trio makes even a stone melt. That’s the reason even after so many lakhs of years, we read Sundarkandam with reverence. Also, reciting Sundarakandam is considered equivalent to reading the entire Ramayana as Hanuman and Trijata narrate all the incidents-past,present and future in the august presence of Sitadevi.
After coronation of Sugreeva as the King of Vaanaras, Lord Srirama and…
Thirumazhisai is a holy place located equidistant to Kancheepuram , Mahabalipuram and Mylapur in the present chengelpet district ( Tamilnadu) . This place is very famous for Lord Jagganatha Perumal temple .
The holy place has cool streams fruit and flower grooves yielding abundant fruits. The blossoming flowers all through makes it a perfect place for a nature lover .
Several seers , sages , nomadaic saints , bhikshukas relax and perform penance at this place for eternal peace .
In such an wonderful place , Thirumazhisai Azhwar appeared much earlier than the advent of Kaliyuga .
Azhwar lived for almost 300 years glorifying the Lordships .
Thirumazhisai Azhwar was a junior contemporary of the foremost Azhwars Pogai , Pey and Bhudath Azhwar who laid a solid foundation for vishistadvaita long long ago .
Azhwar was brought up by his foster parents at Thirumazhisai . It is believed Azhwar left them at a very young age and practiced Ashtanga Yoga .
With the main aim of seeking absolute truth he performed severe austerities and penances . He studied and practiced all religious ideas existed during those days Jainism , Buddhism , Carvaka etc one by one until he got disillusioned with each of them . Slowly he came into the fold of saivism through a siddar and started practicing their faith . He was given a name Sivavakyar .
However his search to the absolute truth was not finished . It so happened by divine will he happened to see the effulgence of Pey Azhwar at Kanchipuram.
Peyazhwar was maintaining a garden and Siva Vakyar used to pass that way. Keen to know the secrets of the divine knowledge , both used to discuss about the faith they followed and wanted to conclude about the ultimate truth . Peyazhwar decided to practically demonstrate the absolute truth to his friend .
One day Peyazhwar took a weak rope with knots and a pot with holes .He drew water from the well through this pot and poured it to the plants that he planted upside down.
Siva Vakyar saw this strange act and was surprised to see PeyAzhwar’s behaviour . Peyazhwar asked him why was he disturbed . Thirumazhisai replied Holy Sire ! I am surprised with your strange act! being so learned , How will the purpose of watering the plants serve in this method , as the plant is planted upside down and the pot that contained holes will water the plants?
Peyazhwar was glad that he had started pondering over the truth .Peyazwar told him that the rope was the example for his Athma which is searching through different faiths to find the Absolute truth , but has not succeeded in its search for the truth and still going on searching wasting precious time .
Peyazhwar further explained ,
My dear young man ,
Our ancestors had explained in the following verse“ Thirumaal is like the root of the plant and is the only Paramporul…
From the root only , the leaves, branches, flowers and fruits appear . Similarly all the demigods took forms only from the root and so they might wither away at some time or other. Hence it is poor understanding to think that the other parts of the plant are superior to the root, meaning without the root the plant cannot survive.
“Persons engaged in the worship of demigods are not clear , although such worship is indirectly offered to Me.” For example, when water is poured on the leaves and branches of a tree instead on the root, he does so without sufficient knowledge or without observing regulative principles. The process of watering a tree is to pour water on the root.
Similarly, the process of rendering service to different parts of the body is to supply food to the stomach. The demigods are, so to speak, different directors in the government of the Supreme Lord. One has to follow the laws made by the government only , not by the others . Similarly, everyone is to offer his worship to the Supreme Lord only. That will automatically satisfy the different denigods who are working under the the Lord.
Peyazwar’s explanation put Siva Vakyar in deep thought. He realized that he was still searching for the true knowledge , but couldn’t find it.
He requested Peyazhwar to accept him as his disciple. Peyazhwar named him Bhaktisaara . He started following vaishnavism and serving Peyazhwar for more lessons .
Later he took leave of Peyazhwar and went on divya desa yathra. After visiting few divya desams he went back to Thiruvekka ( Kancheepuram) and stayed there. Kanikannan a devotee , requested Bhaktisarar to accept him as his disciple. Azhwar accepted him as his disciple.
It so happened at Thiruvekka in his ashram an old lady used to come and clean his place, and perform small service to him. One day she prayed him that being old she felt that she may not be able to serve him longer and regretted for joining this pious service after becoming old.
Azhwar was touched with her devotion and sincerity and blessed her regain her youth .
One day the king who ruled over Kanchi happened to see this lady who was so beautiful after Azhwars blessings , and instantly fell in love with her. He married her and took her to his palace. As years rolled by the king was becoming old, but his wife was as young as she was when he got her married.
He asked her what was the secret and she revealed about Azhwar’s blessings..
.She suggested the King to ask KaNaikaNNan to request Azhwar to the palace and pray for the same.
The king sent for KaNIkaNNan and told him to summon Azhwar and compose a verse in his praise and to restore his youth. KaNikaNNan told him that Azhwar would not compose verse praising mortals, but only in praise of Lordships..
He orders them to leave the kingdom immediately. KaNikaNNan informs Azhwar all that had happened. Azhwar decided to leave the kingdom with his disciple and prays Lord to join along with them folding His couch ( AravaNai)
கணிகண்ணன் போகின்றான் காமரு பூங்கச்சி மணிவண்ணா நீ கிடக்க வேண்டா -துணிவுடைய செந்நாப் புலவனும் போகின்றேன் நீயுன் உன்றன் பைந்நாகப் பாய் சுருட்டிக்கொள்.
Lo presto! What a surprise! The Lord obeyed his true devotee’s order,
He got up and followed his devotees out of the city, folding His snake-bed and sticking it under arm.
The next moment the whole city plunged into darkness and ill omens occurred. The king got frightened and called his ministers for quick remedy.
They told him that he had committed a big blunder by expelling a true devotee of the Lord and so no other alternative, but to go and ask for his pardon and beseech him to come back.
The king along with his courtiers reached the place where Azhwar and KaNikaNNan were staying for the night. He fell at their feet and begged them to return to the city.
Azhwar again requested the Lord to return to his abode with His snake-bed and the Lord also was happy to return.
From then onwards the Lord got the name Sonna VaNNAm Seytha Perumal and in Sanskrit Yathokthakari.
This divine incident had been glorified by Arunagirinatar and Kumaragurupanar both devotees of Paramasivan and Skandar in their works .
The place they stayed for the night got the name Oriravu Irukkai and at present is known as Orikkai where a Mani Mandapam is erected.
A special feature of Thirumazhisai Azhwar at the Jagannatha Perumal temple in Kancheepuram is that he gives darshan with a third eye.
Thirumazhisai Azhwar later moved to Thiru Kudanthai ( Kumbakonam ) and glorified the Lord there .
Thirumazhisai Azhwar’s contribution to the Nalayira Divya Prabhandham includes over 200 verses
(Naanmugan Thiruvanthaathi and Thiruchandha Viruththam) of praise.
It is construed , Azhwar expresses after thoroughly convincing himself about the futility of all the other faiths of his first hand experience and affirms
LORD SRIMAN NARAYANA is the supreme and absolute reality .
The second composition “Thiruchandha Viruththam” has 120 pasurams which is included in the first thousand of the DivyaPrabhandam .
The composition is so charming that the chanter is tempted to swoon himself to the lilting chants coming out naturally in the divine composition .
The rhythm goes like tana tana tana tana tana tana Tanana…
almost reminding the gallop of an horse .
This prabhandam is recited in Srirangam during the Ashwa vahanam festival when Nammperumal rides the Horse .
Azhwar expresses in his Prabhandam , Creation or Life emanated through creatures and vegetation around , on all four sides everywhere . This creation is rampant quickly spreading continuous and is powerful . The divine fragrant LORD the Universal Lord created Brahma . Brahma in turn created Rudra .
I the humble devotee of the Universal Lord submit these in my prabhanda Naanmugam Thiruvandhaadhi . In his Prabhanda , Azhwar builds up by stages the total helplessness of the jivatmas and affirms that only LORD should shower his mercy and grace the helpless soul every stage for his upliftment and reach Godhead .
Swamy Nampillai was the fourteenth Acharya in the prestigious Guruparampara lineage of Srivaishnava sampradaya .
One day Swamy Nampillai asked his Acharya Nan Jeeyar the most relevant question of present day. He submitted to his Acharyar humbly and asked Swamin !!
How can one confirm that he has the qualities of a srivaishnava ?
Nanjeeyar was a chosen disciple of Swamy Parasra Bhattar and naturally possessed all the divine knowledge from his Acharyar .
Nanjeeyar replied !
My child If a person undoubtedly believes that Lord Sriman Narayana in his Archa form gracing us in the temples and house does possess all supreme powers as in Srivaikunta Loka, He can count to be one among a Srivaishnava .
Our Azhwars were possessing that divine quality which made them glorify the Lordships in all the vaishnava divyadesams and Abhimana sthalas .
Jagathacharyar Swami Ramanuja was explaining to his disciples about the glory of Tirumala . All of a sudden he remembered his dear disciple Ananthazhwan and felt like seeing him who was at Tirumala and have darshinam of Lord Venkatateshwara.
Ananthazvan obediently followed Acharyars instructions and was successful in laying a garden with all kinds of beautiful and pleasant fragrant flowers which he offered as soon as it started blooming to ensure the fragrance remains with LORD daily .
He also dug a small pond for gardening the plants .Swami Ramanuja was very glad to know about his disciple Ananthazvan dedication in serving the LORDSHIPS .
Swamy Ramanuja proceeded his journey towards Tirumala with few of his disciples from Srirangam . In those days Tirumalai was very hard to reach and there was dense forest on the way. The climate was also not suitable as it was too cold on…
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
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 .
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”.