I recently happened to hear life history some of the great personalities. The discourses were in the form of Hari-Katha format rendered by Smt. Thanjavur Kamala Murthy. This CD was given to me by one VKV Sir who conducts the Madurai Mani Iyer Remembrance Day in Chennai and is based out of USA. I happened to meet him incidentally at Mylapore Ragha Sudha Hall in the Madurai Mani Iyer memorial concert organized by him along with Cleveland Sundaram Mama somewhere in 2007. The Hari-Katha art form once a glorious art form got dwindled and we have only very few people who practices now. I think it is high time Music Academy should promote and support this seriously otherwise we will not have this art form for the next generation. The harikatha contained life histories of Vadalur Vallalar, Sadashiva Brahmendral, Pattinathar, Samartha Ramadas, Sirghazhi Arunachala Kavirayar. All these personalities lived their life entirely dedicated to the Lord. They practiced what they advised and became immortal. They have also composed divine poems on the lord which is an outpouring from their heart.
Saint Tyagaraja in his famous Pancharatna Sri Raga kriti tells us in the pallavi “Endaro Mahanubavulu Andariki Vandanamu” meaning there are lots of great personalities for them I pay my obeisance. He further says in the Anupallavi “Chanduru varnuni yanta chandamunu hradaya aravinda muna juci brahmanandam anubavimsuva” i.e. these devotees of the lord always mediate in their heart on the Lords divine form which is like the moon and enjoy the supreme bliss”. The quality of the devotee is described clearly by Sri Tyagaraja that they always thinks about the Lord and always in bliss. When we were discussing our last article “Who am I” by Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi he says we are not this material body but eternal atma. Ramana was in trance always thinking about Arunachala. Lookout the similarities of what Tyagaraja said and What Ramana practiced. I think if your corroborate all the great personalities realization they constantly think on their prime divinity either in the archa form or nirguna form like Ramana Maharshi since the truth is one and the same.
The life histories of all these divine personalities will help us to know in addition to their personal history, the eternal truth in some form or the other and also how they practiced that in their life. With that background I am planning give some articles about these great personalities which will be aptly titled as “Endaro Mahanubavulu”. The first in this series is about “Vadalur Vallalar” Saint Ramalinga Adigal.
Happy reading! Regards, A.V. Devan