Why do we need an acharyan? Why someone in between us and the Supreme Being? How does acharyan aid us in attaining moksham ? These are the most frequently asked questions when someone enters the sampradayam.
Acharyan is like the lighthouse that stands in the shore and guides the ships caught in the sea to reach the seashore. Likewise, we are caught in the sea of samsara, the darkness of which has impaired our vision and has led to our losing the sense of direction in life. It is Acharyan who comes to our rescue by showing us the path that leads to the Supreme Emperumaan. Acharyan is that benevolent beacon that helps us bypass the ills of samsaric existence.
There might be a switch and an electric wire that connects the fan in our house. But simply turning on the switch will not make the fan work and give us good air circulation. We need electricity to run through the wire. Acharyan is that electricity in our lives. Our prayers alone won’t fetch us the Grace of SrimanNarayanan. We need Acharyan to recommend us to Him.
The Bright sun never fails to bloom the lotus that is in water, but if the same lotus separates from the water , the sun would only wither the lotus. Water is Acharyan, the Sun Emperumaan and we are Lotus. If only we have the sambandham of Acharyan will Emperumaan Cause blossom in our lives. Though we may have all the qualities of a Sharanagathan, Emperumaan will reject us without the sambandham of acharyah. Acharyan is someone who wipes out the ignorance that has enveloped our soul. He is the one who gives us Gnyanam of self and the supreme. And it is this Gnyaanam that entitles us a seat in the abode of Emperumaan. It is because of the lure of the ‘Acharya post’ that Emperumaan himself turned Geethacharyan.
When we have committed unpardonable mistakes and have ended up causing harm to someone, we seek their mercy. If we approach them , hold their hands and ask for pardon, there is a likelihood that they may not pardon us. But if we fall at their feet and hold them tightly, even if their heart is iron, it will turn molten and we would be pardoned. Seeking Emperumaan for Moksham is like the former example and seeking acharyan is like the latter. The three eyes of Shiva or the eight eyes of Brahma or even the thousand eyes of Paramapurusha cannot equal the Grace of one eye of Acharyan.
Acharya sambandham is like the Mangalasootram ( Thaali) that women wear. All the ornaments a woman wears would add her beauty and lusture provided the vital Mangalasootram bedecks her neck. If she loses the eligibility to wear the Mangalasootram, wearing any other ornament would only kill her beauty and charm. So even if a jeevatma possesses all the qualities of a Sharanagathan like Gnyaanam, Bhakthi and Vairagyam, the lack of Acharyasambandham would never lead him to the feet of Supreme Being.
Emphasizing the importance of Acharyas, Srimaan Bhattar Kuzham(SBK) has been regularly felicitating the Acharyas of our Sampradayam through a small scheme named ‘Acharya Vandanam’. The children of SBK have been tutored on developing savings habit. Every month end, the children pool their savings and keep it ready for the Acharyan who would visit them and bless them. An acharyan would be invited from any of the divya desams and would be duly honoured by the students of Srimaan Bhattar Kuzham. The children would render Vedam, Pasurams and Storas before him and that Swamy would bless the children with a short and enlightening speech.
This month was unique as the veteran Acharya purusha Sri Srinivasachariar Swamy hailing from Prathivadi Bhayankara thiruvamsam visited Srimaan Bhattar Kuzham and accepted the Acharya Vandanam honour . Swamy is the grandson of Prathivadi Bhayankaram Gadhi swamy, the Kalakshepa acharyan of Mahavidwan Prathivadi Bhayankaram Annangarachariar swamy. Swamy is also the Owner and Nirvaha kartha of Bombay Phanaswadi Srinivasa Perumal Koil. Swamy has sishyas throughout India especially the North and West.Sri swamy’s shatabhishekam was recently celebrated with thousands of sishyas from North India flocking Kancheepuram to seek his Blessings. Swamy was very happy to see the children learn Sampradayam with great fervor. He blessed the children and prayed for their use in the Kainkaryams of Emperumaan.
The photos of Swamy and the Acharya Vandanam are here in the link. Sastras say the person who has celebrated Shatabhisekam is to be worshipped with the reverence that is offered to SrimanNarayanan. Please see the photos and seek the blessing of swamy (through the Photo) and bless the children of SBK.