Saturday, November 26, 2011

SriRama beckons you !

The SriRamayana competition conducted by Srimaan Trust at various places in South India was conducted with great zeal in two phases. The competition saw excellent response from various cities and from various sects of people. From the little toddler mumbling words in Mazhalai to the 12th grader equipped to face the outside world, the contest has seen a variety of participants. Every year the participation of Muslim and Christian community is also on the rise.It is with great pleasure we state that the Sri Ramayana Contest has been a very excellent medium in effectively imparting sampradaya knowledge among school going children.

This year, the competition turned out to be a great attraction for the students despite there existing distractions at every possible direction. The eager participation provided great promise that our culture will sustain the onslaught of materialism and philistinism.

The final prize distribution function for the competition held at Chennai will be held on 27-11-2011. The invitation is attached. Please grace the occasion, listen to the thought provoking speeches of the great stalwarts who’ll preside over the function and bless the winners of the context. Spending a couple of hours by you for the children shall boost the motivation levels of the children as well as the volunteers of Srimaan Trust.

The invitation is here in this link :

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1zUZw07iu-fCNuc9O3DBUqAsAeGgGg_0DBC2xSa1cRiU/edit?hl=en_US&pli=1--

Savouring the divine fruit!

What is the panacea of all our diseases, both physical and mental? What can give us imperishable peace? What can bestow us with immeasurable bliss/aanandam?

When Shri Veda Vysya pondered these questions several thousand years ago, He discovered the one pill remedy called Srimad Bhagavatham. Shri Vyasadeva, the compiler of all the Vedic literature, foresaw the age we now live in deteriorating more and more through quarrel and hypocrisy. To help man not defeat the actual purpose of his human life, he compiled the Srimad-Bhagavatam. The Srimad-Bhagavatam gives clear directions on how we can live a contented and happy life. It plunges us into the mystic ocean of “KRISHNA” and leaves us marooned in it for the rest of our life.

A mango fruit’s taste usually sticks to the tongue, leaving us wanting more. And the wonderful taste is enhanced if it is already tasted by a Bird or squirrel. Srimad Bhagavatham is described as the fruit that has been bitten by the Divine Sukar (Bird).

With a view to impart the knowledge of Srimad Bhagavadam amongst school children, Srimaan Trust has started taking classes at school with the aid of several Bhagavathas. One such initiative has materialized in a session at South Ranga School of Srirangam. This was followed by a session at Acharyah also. This time, the classes were taken by Shri Divya Krishna Dasan.

It is a Baghyam for these children to listen to the charitram of “ Vennai unda vaayan” at day and visit Him at His abode in the midst of Saptha Prakaram.

The photo link is here:

https://picasaweb.google.com/srimaantrust/ChildrenSDaySpecialAcharyah?authuser=0&authkey=Gv1sRgCJKZzvmb7N64cA&feat=directlink

https://picasaweb.google.com/srimaantrust/ChildrenSDaySpecialSouthRenga?authuser=0&authkey=Gv1sRgCK6EmOvlzZKaqwE&feat=directlink

Learning the eternal language...

Is it possible to describe vividly in words the incomparable grandeur of the Sun? Well, Sanskrit is as resplendent as the Sun. Its intrinsic worth and value cannot be brought out in full measure in words. It is no hyperbole to say that even if all the trees in the world are treated as pens, all the water in the oceans and seas the ink and the entire earth the writing sheet, we cannot adequately bring out in words the extraordinary richness and opulence of that priceless and peerless language.

How old is Sanskrit? Well, it is as old as Emperumaan Himself which means, it has no origin, neither human nor divine. The exact antiquity of Sanskrit cannot be established with any degree of certainty. There were standard books in Sanskrit on almost all the disciplines in ancient India including science, technology, mathematics, astrology, astronomy, medicine etc. So, it is not as if Sanskrit is literature alone, including devotional literature, and nothing else.

But the decline of Sanskrit began with the establishment of the Muslim rule in India. Mohamad Ghazni was a raider who invaded India seventeen times only to loot India of its wealth. He had no intention of establishing Muslim rule in India. But, Mohamed Ghori, not only invaded India, but established Muslim rule in India in the twelfth century. He replaced Sanskrit with Persian, as the language of administration. Since then, Sanskrit was on the wane, though it did not become extinct, thanks to Emperuman’s bountiful grace and the efforts of our Poorvacharyas and several other Mahans of other Darshanams. Other than the vyakyanams and a few other works, most of the divine writings of our Poorvacharyas have been in Sanskrit.

When India became independent from the British rule, Sanskrit should have been adopted as the official language of India. But it wasn’t so adopted. And today, this blunder has resulted in our relegating Sanskrit to a position that was meant for foreign languages like French and German. Sanskrit is now a language that we can choose as second language provided our misbegotten foreign language fad lays in hibernation. But the irony is that the foreigners are smitten by Sanskrit.

Samskritha Bharathi has been taking several initiatives in promoting Sanskrit throughout India. They have toiled hard in taking Sanskrit to the masses and school going children. And Srimaan Trust has been pouncing at every chance to promote and spread Sanskrit. So when the people of Samskrita Bharathi approached the Trust for pooling in children for taking spoken Sanskrit classes, a meeting was arranged inviting the parents of SBK children and several others. About 50 students were enrolled in the classes. In a short duration, the children learned Sanskrit and began conversing in it.

Go through the videos and please control any envy that may naturally overpower you ( )

LISTEN TO A FREE FLOWING SANSKRIT CONVERSATION:

https://picasaweb.google.com/srimaantrust/SpokenSanskritVideo?authuser=0&authkey=Gv1sRgCJbaqby9k-mlAw&feat=directlink

PHOTO LINK :

https://picasaweb.google.com/srimaantrust/SpokenSanskritFinalDayFunction?authuser=0&authkey=Gv1sRgCJi0neL7p9-00QE&feat=directlink

https://picasaweb.google.com/srimaantrust/SpokenSanskritClass?authuser=0&authkey=Gv1sRgCPyvoobBhYSZwQE&feat=directlink

Built.....​.to last!

16th November 2011 marked a significant day in the career of Srimaan Trust. While all of us have loved to possess a new house of our own, a house built brick by brick from the pennies we have carefully deposited in the bank, this new block of Srimaan Trust rose from the savings of many dedicated souls to stay for eternity and serve the Srivaishnava world. While we invited the close relatives and bosom friends for our Grihapravesam, an assortment of innumerable souls were the invitees for the inauguration of “Eramanusan Ponnadi”. They included every donor of the Trust from its very inception, Kainkaryaparas from each divya desam, Acharyapurusha families, adhyapakas, Vidwans and past and present beneficiaries of the Trust. 1200 invitations were sent across India.

Work began a couple of days before the Grihapravesham. The volunteers, along with the past students of Srimaan Bhattar Kuzham (SBK) were engrossed in preparing the new premises for the Grihapravesam. The dedication shown by the past students of SBK cannot be described by words. Most of them didn’t leave the Trust for two days. Neither did they go to their houses nor to their workplaces (or college). Every action of theirs created joy and motivation in the minds of the volunteers. The motivation that they ought to create more such “ Kainkarya jewels” for sampradayam.

The muhoortham was between 6- 7:30 am on 16th. The new banner resplendent in shades of golden and red with “Eramanusan Ponnadi” printed on it, was slowly raised and put on the new building with the joyous shrieks of the volunteers. The whole building glittered in the light of the bright lamps and the glow was enhanced by the full smile of the Srivaishnavas present there.

At 6:30 am, with all the Bhagavathas assembled at ‘Eramanusan Ponnadi’, the auspicious cow along with its calf was brought outside the premises and go-pooja was performed. New vasthrams were put across the body of the cow and the calf. Sandhanam was ceremoniously sprinkled on them. Fresh Kunkuman was smeared across their forehead. An instant later, the Pravesham was done with Sri Parasara Azhagiyasinga Bhattar swamy and Ammangar, SriAasuri Madhavachariar swamy, all the Gurukulam students, donors and the volunteers entering through the front door. The environment was electric.

Immediately, the Holy cow and its calf made their way into premises followed by the Founder Acharya and His Dharmapathni. The Homa kuntham was placed in the second room at the ground floor. The Homan was awaiting the arrival of Pramahamsa Srirenganaraya Jeeyar swamy. And as expected, Swami arrived at the promised hour. Under His auspices, the Homan was conducted in which all the Gurukulam students participated. The whole building reverberated with the chant of SriSudarshana Azhwar’s Thirunaamam and Mantram.

Simultaneously as the Homam was progressing, the first floor was ready to feed the Srivaishnavas with Balabhogam. Majority of the volunteers, students of SBK and the students of the Gurukulam engaged in serving Balabhogam with each room getting filled simultaneously.

This was followed by the Gurukulam children bringing their Thiruvaradhana perumal , doing a splendid alankaram to Him and readying Him for the Divya Prabandha gosht. The gosthi was headed by one of the adhyapakars of Thiruvarangam Periya Koil. Important pasurams from all the Divya Prabandhams were recited. The Gurukulam children participated with utmost enthusiasm. Finally, the satrumurai was conducted and theertha prasadams distributed to all.

By noon many sthala –acharya purushas visited the premises and heaped their blessings. Sri Sirupuliyoor Annan swamy, despite his age, placed his Holy foot on the new building and blessed the Children.The alankaara thadeeyaradhanai was conducted at Sri Koorathazhwan’s sannidhi.

This shareeram of ours was given by Emperumaan to serve Him and His adiyars. But due to the Prakruthi sambandham, half our life is eaten away by sleep, a quarter in fulfilling the fads of the Indriyas. If at all our life is left, we spend try to spend it in Bhagavad and bhagavatha kainkaryam. But even then, how many Bhagavathas can we serve with our shakthi and time? Very few. But a building can serve innumerable bhakthas from its very inception. And it can go on and on for many years. “Eramanusan Ponnadi” is here to stand and serve Srivaishnava Sampradayam for posterity.

Like the Keerthi of Eramanusar, we pray the Lord of Thiruvarangam to keep the Kainkarya selvam of “Eramanusan Ponnadi” to last forever! We request each of you to visit Eramanusan Ponnadi and commence its kainkarya journey.

Kindly click the below link for photos:

https://picasaweb.google.com/srimaantrust/RamanusanPonnadi16thNovember2011?authkey=Gv1sRgCM3BrvmViJyXRg

Monday, November 7, 2011

Nectar to the ears!

Sriramayanam competition conducted for school chidren every year by our Trust has two stages. The first stage is the written competition based on Valmiki Ramayanam while the second is recitation competition. A child who has scored 60% in the written phase becomes eligible for the second phase. The second phase consists of recitation of jewel like shlokas from Sriramayanam, Samkshepa Ramayanam and Pasurapadi Ramayanam.


This year, despite the weather being so cloudy, no cloud was seen in the faces of the children and they participated with absolute excitement and enthusiasm. Each child excelled in his own way of expression and tone of recitation. Shlokas were explained with their meaning. The children almost performed Harikatha with actions for each shloka. The judges resorted to a tough questioning pattern where they asked questions like 'tell the Shloka that describes the most enviable quality of Raama? Tell the shloka that describes the craving of sri raama for seetha? And the children were exceptionally well in answering these questions. A 10 year old child from Nanganallur took the gathering by storm with her exemplary rendition of each shloka in a different Raagam. The nectar of Rama blended with the wonderful voice of the child and plunged the gathering into spiritual bliss.


Four judges were invited and the competition went on very nicely. Evey time the children explained the greatness of Rama as explained in the various works they have written in their hearts, every volunteer wished to rejoin school and participate in this competition !


For Nectar to eyes and ears, follow the link:


https://picasaweb.google.com/srimaantrust/SriRamayanamRecitationCompetition2011?authkey=Gv1sRgCN-hpeyRsMiVtQE

Following THE footsteps!

In our Sampradayam, the most important acharya is Sri Ramanujacharya. His importance is so evident that the Lord of Thiruvarangam, Namperumal, rechristened the name of this sampradayam with his name as Emperumanar darshanam or Ramanuja darshanam despite the likes of Brahmanandi, Bharuchi and other Great rishis of the Vedas contributing immensely to it and all the azhwars and acharyas dedicating their lives for the sampradayam far before the avatharam of Ramanujacharya.


Till date temples resonate with the sound of ‘ Ramanujarya divyagnya’ be the temple at Nepal or the temples at the Southern tip of India. No doubt this Acharya was the gift of Namperumal to this darshanam. His greatness is such that in most temples , it is His perumai that is sung as Gosthi (Ramanuja Nootrandadhi) for the thirunakshtram of any azhwar or acharya. Even for their own Thirunakshtrams, they wish to hear His praise ! That He was considered with great reverence by His predecessors and successors is no surprising a fact considering the magnitude of His personality.


But we shouldn’t think He was sought only to seek religious initiation or to solve philosophical problems. His acharya, Sri Periyanambigal sought His aid for every domestic problem of his. When His daughter came to a marriageable age, he called upon Ramanujacharya to seek a groom for her. When after marriage, the in-laws of the daughter demanded a servant, he sought Ramanujacharya for a solution and Swamy gave the best answer in the form of Mudhaliaandan. Swamy’s Muth was the single point where a variety of problems and difficulties queued up seeking solution and were resolved in the best possible manner.


Just by impersonating Him we won’t become Him. But following his footsteps will surely make us to His liking. And that is what each one of us is endeavouring for. Srimaan Trust is also in this endeavour. An old girl student of Srimaan Bhattar Kuzham (SBK), after completing her academics was decided to be given in marriage to a bright boy good boy.But she wasn’t from an affluent family. How to conduct the marriage was the boiling question? And the parents were at the Trust’s premises for solution.


The first word of the Founder acharya and the volunteers was that this girl is Lord Ranganatha’s treasure which meant she was ours too. And conducting her marriage was our duty too. With these words they assured the parents of help in all forms. As a first step all the utensils needed for marriage were purchased and given to the parents. This was followed by monetary aid and will be followed by human resource aid.


And we pray the Lord who made Ramanujacharya the ubhaya vibhoothi naathar to give us more opportunities to follow the footsteps of Ethirajar!


The photo link of the utensils given for the marriage is here :


https://picasaweb.google.com/srimaantrust/HelpForNeedy?authkey=Gv1sRgCLjGpvaayrWtvwE