Saturday, September 7, 2013

A STRANGER ...... - 4


Srimate ramanujaya nama:

Priya arangan adiyar,


Completing the thayar sann
idhi and other sannidhis I came back to Perumal sannidhi and by this time, the walk in the long corridors of the temple had kindled hunger in me. As I was walking towards the temple entrance with a view to reach my friend’s house and munch the breakfast, I saw the Gurukulam children enter it. They were a shade brighter than what I could see in the pre-dawn darkness. All of them bore the tiruman and srichoornam marks on their foreheads and were chatting and walking.

My shy recipient at the Gurukulam gate too was in their midst. He held a lot of fruits in his hands and was moving about unable to balance them. I quickly went to him, not with a view to help him but to ask if I could have a fruit or two. My hunger was such. He recognized me as the pre-morning miscreant who had delayed his routine by throwing random questions at him. But he smiled this time shedding away the shyness from the corner of his lips. I liked this boy. To my request for the fruits, he ran away with them leaving me agape in a stare.

I resumed my journey to the friend’s house and had reached the temple’s exit gopuram, which was the entrance too. I heard a “Swamy!, Swamy!” sound in the background and a little surprised at being addressed so reverentially ,given my attire, turned back to face the little fellow who ran away with the fruits. He said in a low tone “Adhu Perumal ku amsi pannadadhu. Na ippo Azhwan ku amsi pannitu vandhuten. Ippo Sapdungo” (Those were not offered to Perumal. Now I have offered it to Azhwan. Eat now). His Bhakthi touched me. I too had the habit of offering to Perumal but was never so diligent; especially when hungry. Three bananas entered my mouth and made their way to the stomach in quick succession. He looked at me in delight with streaks of amusement in it. I reasoned he felt me a figure straight out of the Somalian famine. My hunger pangs settled amicably, I gave up the wish to go to my friend’s house and joined the Gurukulam children in their chatter and walk.



The need to protect the deity of Divya Desam is important. Still more is the duty to protect and spread the works on the deity by the Azhwars and Acharyas. It is their texts and life that have made Srirangam the spine of Srivaishnavam, Tirumalai the deity of the North and South, Kanchi the land that sacrifices and Tirunarayanapuram the land that imparts. How else would temples turn to divya-desams and Perumal into Namperumal? And one who knows the greatness of the deity and the works on the deity would willingly serve the deity.

But is there not a necessity to enlighten the layman on the greatness of a divya-desam, Azhwars and Acharyas? Who does this pivotal work of opening the gates of knowledge and wisdom to others? It is the scholar (vidwan). A scholar is the one who dispels the darkness dwelling in us and opens up a fresh world of Bhakthi and anubhavam to us. Without the scholar, the Lord can do nothing. Everything will turn sluggish and uninteresting if a scholar fails to raise his voice and address people. He anchors the souls to the harbor called Hari and saves them from the rough waters of samsara. Each one of us who has gained spiritual insights need to pay obeisance to vidwans and support them by all means.

Sri Tirumalachariar swamy, well known as Baala Pandithamani, is a scholar par excellence. He is the younger brother of the Vaikuntavasi Sri Nrisimhachariar swamy. Born in 1936, he learnt Vedas, divya prabandham, SriRamayanam ,SriBhagavatham, Bhagavat Geetha, Mahabharatham and all other scriptures from his own father. From a very young age he has been delivering discourses on various topics. The titles earned by him are enormous. He is known for the witty and light way of handling dry topics. Today, the friction of age has slowed down the Swamy. He finds it hard to discourse. His financial condition isn’t good. His health has taken a beating.

Like every year, a DVD discourse of a vidwan accompanied our Spiritual Diary. This year it was SriTirumalachariar swamy’s. The sale proceeds of the DVD and a separate sambhavanai was humbly submitted by the Founder Acharya and the volunteers of the Trust to Swamy. He was very happy and wished great success to the works of the Trust. He was happier that his knowledge was dispersed in the form of the DVD.

Click here for the photos


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