Saturday, April 27, 2013

Parent Teacher meeting – Platform for better understanding of the Education system

Priya arangan adiyars

Education is a critical factor that makes a person complete. Whereas education is proper only when it imparts true knowledge. It is very essential to search for such a teacher from whom we can acquire the true knowledge. In Bhaghavad Gita, Sri Krishna says ‘Tad viddhi pranipAtena pariprashnena sevayA upathekshyanti te jyAnam jyAnina: tattva darshina:’. Sri Krishna emphasizes that a perfect teacher who imparts the truth must be approached with sincerity, dedication and devotion.  The abode of such perfect teachers is none other than the Acharyah School at Srirangam. The parents of Acharyah school students have indeed made a right choice and identified the right educational institution for their children. Even the slightest doubt in the minds of the parents in regard to their decision of choosing Acharyah School was dispelled by an eminent personality amidst them.

Acharyah School Parent Teacher meeting was held recently. The session started with an introductory speech by Sriman Trust Volunteer, Sudarshana. After a brief introduction about the special invitee, the session was followed by an inspiring speech by a veteran in educational field, Ms. Vasantha Vanamamalai, Correspondent of Vidhya Bharathi School who was the special invitee for the parent teacher meeting. She had served as the Principal of Bharathiya Vidya Bhavan, Erode for 20 years and as the principal of a reputed school at Delhi for 6 years. She needs to be referred as 74 years young women instead of 74 years old for the extent of enthusiasm she had to share her experience in this field. Even at that age, she was not only enthusiastic but was able to transfer her energy on to the listeners through her speech. She enriched the minds of parents with several facts about the growth of a school and a student. Growth of anything is said to be right only when it is slow, steady and gradual. Sudden growth is not practical and even if it is possible it may not provide long-lasting benefits. As and when a seed is sown, it does not provide fruits. Several years of watering the plant, adequate use of manure, taking steps to protect it from bad climatic conditions and weeds are essential but not enough for the plant’s growth. The most vital factor is to patiently wait till the plant becomes a huge tree which gives greenery, vegetables, sweet fruits and scented flowers. Similarly, to set a new, well settled and a well established family it requires 10 years of time. The time required for a school to get well established is double the time required for a family. Instead of analyzing the size of the school, it would be better for the parents to concentrate on how the students are trained. Like a foundation of a building, roots of a tree which need to be firm and strong, the pre-primary levels of a student which is the base for his/ her entire education need to be firmly built. This is ensured by the education pattern of this school. Out of all the Schools visited by her in past 30 years, she was really impressed and deeply satisfied by the education system of Acharyah School especially the pre-primary levels. The Acharyah School provides a complete education by teaching academic knowledge, spiritual knowledge, values and good habits. The role of a parent who had sent their child to this school is only have pure faith on the education and value system of the school and to wait patiently in order to witness and enjoy the fruits. Later, the Founder Acharya of Sriman Trust, Sri. U.Ve. Parasara Badri Narayana Bhattar Swami spoke about the decision making skills of a child and comparing it to that of an adult. The reason behind clear and stable decisions by a child is that they are open-minded and they do not carry any inhibitions. Such young minds need to be properly nurtured and developed with true knowledge as they are the future pillars of this society. This is the primary motive of the entire management of Acharyah School.

At the end of the session, the parents were given sometime to get their doubts clarified with the Expert. However, there was no need for the same as her eloquent talk had already made their minds crystal clear devoid of all doubts. The session concluded with a Vote of Thanks by Sriman Trust Volunteer, Sudarshana. It was an elevating experience for the Management and the Parents to have such a knowledgeable person among them.

You can find below some of the snaps of the function below:

Sunday, April 21, 2013

The Genesis - Conclusion.

Priya arangan adiyar,



The place we fixed as Sri Venkatesa Perumal Koil, West Mambalam and it was decided that the persons honoured this year should be in and around this area. How to locate these persons was the next puzzle? At that point in time, no volunteer of the Trust was at West Mambalam. So the existing volunteers, through existing contacts organized a small get together at Sri Kodanta Ramar temple, West Mambalam. And slowly, the volunteers count picked up. Brain storming sessions were held and a plan for the programme was charted. But there was one huge concern. All of the volunteers were working and could not afford to turn up on each day of the month. Who would be there and manage the event everyday?


When the purpose is pious and the will plentitude, the Paramatma would play his part. A young adult, seeing the gathering of volunteers at the temple, came there. The conversation between the strangers is here:

Kainkaryasree (Volunteers) : “Srimate ramanujaya nama: .Welcome”

Young adult :  “Thanks …what are you discussing?”

Kainkaryasree : “We want to honour selfless souls but don’t find a person to be there on all days”

Young adult: “Well…..I’ll do that. Will be there on all days”

Kainkaryasree : ............ (Pleasantly shocked, look at each other with mouths agape)

This Lord Kodanta Rama sent newcomer, kept to his words. On the last few days, his nephew was very ill with Typhoid and the child was hospitalized. But still, the volunteer kept to his words and made all arrangements for the function. He carried with him the quality of Lord Rama “ Ramo dwirnabi bhashatae”, Rama has no two tongues. All the volunteers, despite their loukeeka commitments, tirelessly worked to promote the kainkaryam.

And so, from a point of absolute inactivity, the THONDIN AARADHANAI gained quick momentum and turned into an avalanche from the beyond. Lot of kind hearts contributed their might for the purpose. Sri Krishna Sweets Managing Director, Shri Murali was bowled by the idea of honouring a variety of persons on each day of the event. He wanted to gift them all a memento and did so. With the sincere and devoted efforts of all, the event ended on a very high and energetic note. 

The honour included the following:

Garland worn by the Lord.

His theertham and SriSatari.

Good quality veshti (dhoti)/ pudavai (saree) as the case was.


Diary and CD of the Trust.

Sambhavanai (Token monetary honour).
The group photos of the volunteers with Sri Elayavilli Sriram swamy and his son Sri Satajith and the photos of a few volunteers being appreciated are here in the link.

The names of the volunteers are listed here. It is requested you simply wish them “let this Thondin Aaradhanai kainkaryam continue forever”.

C Venkatesh
G Balakrishnan
R Venkatakrishnan
T S Sadagopan
Rajappa Tadepalli
R LakshmiNarayanan
N Madhavan
R Sudharsanan
Ranganathan Ramaswamy
L Raghuraman
R Sridharan
Srinivasa Varadan
Sundaram Krishnaswamy
Sampath Kumar
Kunnavakam Muralidharan
Suresh - took all the photos

You too can volunteer for this cause . Your effort can make an unsung hero living in your vicinity known to the world. Click here to become Thondin aaradhanai volunteer.

Here is a quick recap of the 30 days and the great souls honoured then..

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

From where we come and where we go?

Priya arangan adiyar

The journey of a million miles begins with a single step.  It stands true for education.  Learning is a gradual and progressive process of assimilation, reasoning and reflection. 

There is an adage in Sanskrit that one must always try to learn however little, and treasure the learning with great care.

There is a lot of activity​ today in defining the process of learning though it may be argued that  little good has come to effect.  However, the question on the process will remain to trouble us as long as the question on the purpose is not settled.

Where does this journey of a million miles end?

Education will continue to be a source of worry until the focus shifts to the student.  The purpose of creating a center of learning must be to enable people to learn.  It should alarm us that such centers are the exception than the norm.  How by running an expensive and complicated learning system plagued by unnecessary distractions (in the guise of competition) do we hope to create a student community that matures into a country of purposeful individuals? It can only created a deluded society - exactly the one we are now living in.

Education must be liberated from the narrowness of purpose – both in the infrastructure and in the content.  The learning process must be pivoted on the singular goal of creating better informed and capable individuals who can provide guidance and participate in the creation of better societies.
The only way to achieve this is to work backwards from the goal and escape the madness of flocking at the same place without knowing why we are there.

The answer to the question of purpose cannot come from strictly materialistic thinking.  Whatever purpose is derived out of sheer materialism will lose sheen in the course of time and result in confusion once again.  The answer must be sought in the beyond.  It is not necessary to define a rigid answer.  It is enough if the students are not inhibited from exploring the true purpose for themselves.

Srimaan Trust through its Gurukulam aims at providing holistic development of students – both material and spiritual.  A batch of students is set for their board exams this year. In this context, a Lakshmi Hayagriva Homam was performed under the tutelage of Therazhundhur Sri Raman Bhattacharyar Svami.  A great number of students and Veda Patasala pupils participated in this ritual.  It was aimed at seeking the guidance of the divine in not only theoretical success of learning but also the success of its practical purpose.

We request you to join us in wishing the children well, and in creating a more useful system of learning.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Blow up the bastion called W...Y!

​​Srimate ramanujaya nama:
Priya arangan adiyars,

Click for Srimaan Info Calenders.
The New Year has dawned. On the beginning of Chitra month, Namperumal goes takes a casual stroll around inside the temple and land in the santhanu mantapam opposite the Dwaara paalakas. There an elaborate thirumanjanam happens with lots of kainkaryaparas pouring their love on Him. The beauty here at Srirangam is the way things happen to Namperumal. When a purappadu(procession) is supposed to being at 9:30am, the onlooker would not have a little scent of it at 9:15am. He would wonder if at all there is purappadu. In a blink of an eye, the concerned persons would pour in from all directions. The carriers of the palanquin, the holders of the fire lights, the persons for carrying the holy vessels, persons carrying the golden canopy and the Sri Shatari would all swarm around Namperumal. As you look on in disbelief, He would have started on the purappadu. Let any problem happen within the human resources involved in the kainkaryam, Namperumal’s work would never stop. He would somehow manoeuvre through the maze of obstacles and complete His planned routine. That is Namperumal. On the first of Chitrai, after a beautiful thirumanjanam with the gattiyam (Specialized Sanskrit-tamil psalm) and Veda vinnappam, Namperumal wore a light green vasthram with shiny maroon borders. It felt as though greenness occupied a humble position 
in the thirumeni of Namperumal. So pleasant was the sight. Holding the Prayoga chakram and other ayudhams ever ready to save His Bhakthas, Namperumal looked every bit like saakshat Raama, willing to go any extent to save and nourish His subjects.

Inline image 2

On the beginning of the Vijaya varsham, we pray Him to give you Vijayam in every endeavour of yours. Let any obstacles come your way, let any roadblock impede your path, keep the mind on the goal and proceed. Lord Hanuman was assigned the grave and most important job of finding the whereabouts of Sri Seetha piratti. If He did not find her, His Swamy would wither in air. Crossing the sea, he landed in the land of Raavana and entered the fortified walls. He knew none there nor had he seen Sri Seetha piratti. Yet, he had the confidence to find her. He made his way in and made a relentless search for her. He opened every door, scrutinized every room and left no stones unturned. But, he could not find her.

Sri Hanuman sat down exhausted. He knew not what to do. His head became dizzy. The past and future colonized his mind and twined roads of multiple thoughts erupted in his otherwise calm mind. He started worrying. The distant prospect of a failure in the mission slowly, but clearly glared at him with ferocity. What would he tell his Swamy? Would he tell Sri Seetha was lost forever? Would he tell Sugreeva he had failed Him? Would he tell the cheering groups of vaanaras that their favorite hero was  a mere zero?

And then all of a sudden he shook himself up. He laughed at himself. He thought “ How can I do this! What can sitting down here and worrying fetch me? Will the worry disguise itself as a tangible person and search for her? Will worry draw a light studded path and show me unto her? What can this worry do to me? Instead of spending these minutes worrying about something that may happen in future, what if I put another foot forward and searched in the rooms ahead? The first thing to be killed is worry. Nothing can stall progress better than worry.” So thinking, he sprang forward with a new felt enormous vigor. And as we know, the rest is history. 

What can worry do to you? There are certain excellent things worry can do. It can make you a figure of the past and the future. While alive, you become history. Which means you control nothing whatsoever. Your worry has spun its rope around you and tied you down to inertia. In addition, worry can tactfully drain all your savings by causing all kinds of health problems. What can farthermost happen in life? What is that last thing we may have to face? The loss of this mortal coil. It is going to happen anyway. Hence, give that full throttle to what you have now in your hand. The jeevatma will ever remain wiping away any stain that may stick to it. What could SriRamanuja have done when he was prosecuted by the Chola king? He could have sat at a secure corner of a village and brooded over the way the Sriranga kingdom built by him by shedding his sweat was being thrashed by the ruler. What did he do? He found another kingdom in Karnataka called Thirunarayanapuram. If at a stage of life or death, our Acharya could build a new kingdom with fresh bricks, can’t we simply go on to complete the hut we have already half-built?

Equipped with the deha-atma viveka gnyanam (cognizance of body-soul differentiation) , the knowledge of our great history, the knowledge of the lives of Azhwars andAacharyas, we can definitely live a life that is free of worry and full of merry. Blow up the unnecessary metal bastion called WORRY!
(Free accommodation,free food, free explanation…for you)
click below for the details and booking.Offer till 15-04-2013

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Namperumal amidst gardens

Priya arangan adiyars,

“ArAmam sUzhndha arangam” is the word of Thirumangai Azhvar. We find many such passages in the hymns of Azhvars where the divine stations of the Supreme Lord are described as richly decorated by serene and beautiful fields, orchards and gardens.
The tending of gardens and the nurturing of good children are quite similar.  The plants have to carefully grown - adding manure, removing weeds, placing them at the right places and providing an adequate but not excessive supply of water.

Children too have to be brought up with the right education and moral values.  They must be taught to avoid bad company and habits.  They must receive adequate care.  Parenting must be found neither lacking nor over-indulging.  It is an interesting and important duty.

Just like how it is useless to grow several poisonous plants and weeds in the fields, and thorny bushes on the sides of the roads, it is as much futile – even detrimental – to nurture children without a spiritual and moral fabric.

Srimaan Trust recognizes the importance of good children and lends a helping hand to create a more spiritually inclined society.  Srimaan Bhattar Kuzham has been a pioneering venture in inculcating the values of our rich and ancient culture and tradition.

A good flower, however small, fills the vast ambience by its rich fragrancec.  It inspires the noble mind to plant more of such flowers, and spread the sweetness and freshness of the sensation.

One such noble soul is the Executive Officer of Srirangam, Mrs. S. Kalyani who was in awe and appreciation of the efforts of Srimaan Bhattar Kuzham.  To spread the fragrance, she encouraged Srimaan Bhattar Kuzham to conduct such spiritual classes for the benefit of all interested children from Srirangam and near at the temple on Saturday evenings.

The children attending these programs are caressed and nurtured by the loving parental grace of Namperumal and Nacchiyar.  As if that were not enough, the Executive Officer also sought to encourage participation and create greater interest among the masses by providing token appreciation and reward for the children who attended these classes on a regular basis.

Namperumal stands in the midst of a new garden where the flowers are good children and their number is ever growing.

Please see some of the snaps taken during the appreciation function at

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Tasting nectar.....

Srimate Ramanujaya nama:

(Free accommodation,free food, free explanation…for you)
click below for the details and booking.Offer till 15-04-2013
Priya arangan adiyars,

The two children brimmed with joy as their teacher taught them the divine narrative of God. As a baby is fed with milk for physical nourishment, the children were spiritually nourished by the word of Sri Ramayana - taught by none other than Sage Valmiki himself!

The two children would go on to sing the same epic in front of the Lord Himself. Their sweet voices would sing a song of nectar that would sound from their red lips. Nectar to the audience of which He Himself was a part!

In Perumal Thirumozhi, Sri Kulasekhara Perumal says that Lord Rama blissfully listened to His divine narrative from the lips of His children Lava and Kusa.

"mithilai-ch-chelvi thiruvayiru vaayththa makkal sempavala-th-thiral vay-th-than sarithai kettaan".Sri Kulasekhara Perumal adds, "emberumAn than sarithai seviyaal kaNNaal innamudham paruguvom". We shall relish the nectar of His divine glories by listening to them and by witnessing His divine form.

To the devotee, the Lord becomes the subject of the senses. The eyes long for His vision. The mouth wants to speak His glories and the ears want to listen to His divine narrative. The body wants to serve Him in all ways.

For the students of Srimaan Bhattar Gurukulam, their lives literally revolve around the Lord. He is their curriculum and their muse.

By all sacrifices, the Lord is worshipped. Recently. the students performed Ashtakshara Homam and Sudarsana Homam at both Kottur and Therazhundhur.

In addition, at Therazhandhur, the students of Srimaan Bhattar Gurukulam participated in a sadas on Pancharatra agama that the Lord Himself had revealed as a system for His worship.

They also got an opportunity to participate in Thiruvoimozhi and Thirumozhi goshti, singing the hymns drenched with devotional love.

The gurukulam children also conducted a Mahalakshmi Homam and Srisooktha homam @ Perabmur
What is the seat of the Devas to one who is engaged in devotional service!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Travelling to the 'era'...

Srimathe Ramanujaya Namaha
     We have all heard of child prodigies. Prodigies are children who not only possess innate talent but also know how to communicate them well to the world outside. That ability makes them unique. Do you know the prodigy we worship every day? She is the first spiritual girl child prodigy, our own Andal! Her two compositions have been completely squeezed by the Acharyas to bring out their inner most meanings.
Once when the demon Hiranyaksha hid the earth under the primordial waters, then Sri Varaha rescued earth from there after destroying Hiranyaksha. It is during that time when Bhoomi Pirattiyar asks Varaha Emperuman a solution for earthlings to reach Him easily. He said that one can reach Emperuman by serving Him through their senses. These words were later retold to us by Bhoomi Pirattiyar when she incarnated as Andal. Andal grew up as an ardent devotee in the household of Bhattarpiran (Periyazhwar). Even as a young child, Andal was very much devoted to Emperuman and couldn’t bear His separation for which she sent clouds as messengers and eventually married Him. But we were not present when all these happened. So all we can do is to just visualize the events in our mind.
Enacting the prodigy’s life: Recently,in a huge congregation of people at the 5th Hindu spiritual and services fair held at Chennai, the children of Srimaan Bhattar Kuzham got a chance to perform a dance drama on the life of Andal. The evening of 23rd February 2013 was indeed very special for every spectator. The events of Andal’s life were set to Bharathanatyam steps and the drama started with the background behind Andal’s birth (Bhoomi Pirattiyar’s avatharam) and covered the entire life of Andal up to Andal’s marriage to the prince of Srirangam (Namperumal).
As the curtains drew to a close with Andal ,Rangamannar and Periazhwar standing together, there very few claps from the public. The stunned volunteers and children looked up to the crowd and understood why there were few claps. Most of the spectators were standing with tears flowing down their cheeks. The event had transported them to the era of Andal and Periazhwar. They ‘witnessed’ the marriage in reality. Hence, such a bhakthi filled reaction from one and all.
Among the hundreds of stalls representing various aspects of Hinduism in the Hindu Spiritual Fair,  Srivaishnavism was represented by a very few institutions and our Trust was one among the few.
Slogging after school hours : Any form of performing arts will come out nicely only if sufficient ground work had been done before the event and this one is no exception. The children of SBK were dedicated to come and practice every day after school hours. The practice sessions went so long that it not only spanned the entire evenings but even stretched up to 10pm at night! The age of the participants ranged from five to 20 which is once again too diverse to co-ordinate.
The girl who transformed…  The girl who reprised the role on Andal did an extremely commendable job. It is wrong to tell she imitated Andal. The girl used to come to practice everday at evening. For the first two weeks, she was taught no dance. She used to read the commentary of Thiruppavai and Nachiar thirumozhi without missing a single pasuram. With every word that entered her mind, the feelings of Andal too made way into her being. The subtle aspects of Andal’s deep love for Emperuman and the way the feelings took shape into events in her life were imbibed by this girl. In two weeks, she became Andal.
Co-ordinated effort : The children, guided by Ammangar held responsibilities in an organized manner and not to forget the volunteers who helped during practice. Even the lyrics for the play as well as narration were prepared by a Trust volunteer at Chennai. There was also a role of a soothsaying lady done by a child with minimal practice (she learnt the step on the morning of the programme) which was guided by this volunteer.
Special sounds : when Andal laments the separation from Emperuman, she hears the parrots sing the name of Govinda. In the dance-drama, when this segment was enacted, the sound of a parrot singing Govinda’s name were beautifully played. Like this, many voice clips were used to enhance the effect of the dance-drama.
     At least from now on, no one can regret that they didn’t attend Andal’s wedding. The photos of the event are here in a link. Interested persons can join hands and organize the event at their place. This is one of the best means to promote the life of our own Andal.