Monday, February 14, 2011

GURU SAMARPARAM - Issue # 7


Dear Readers/Seekers,

Am happy to present the Guru Samarpanam – Issue # 7.

The issue contains the excerpts from the biography, teachings, miracles and upadesa of Pujyashri Sri Sri Chandrasekarendhra Sarasvati Swamigal fondly revered as “Nadamadum Theivam” [Walking God], Mahaperiyva, Peramacharya etc.

Under the biography we can see our Paramacharya’s maiden visit to Tindivanam, the town which witnessed as a young boy now returning as “Jagadguru”. It also narrates the celebration that took place at Kumbakonam to commemorate the Acharya’s pontification as the Acharya of the Kamakoti Peetam.

In the section teachings of Mahaperiyava one can read Periyavaa’s lucid explanation of “Samsare Kim Saram?” i.e. what is the essence of this wordly life? In this Acharya explains the step by step towards achieving the Jnana. I hope this will be very very useful for a sadhaka.

Under the Mircales of Mahaperiyava we are going to see the experience of an Auditor from Salem which clearly tells how our Paramacharya was concerned about the old temples.

Finally the sayins of Periyava has been captured in the form of “Ten Commandments” for us to read and ponder.

I hope you will cherish reading this!

Please give your valuable feedback.

Happy reading!

Warm Regards,

A.V. Devan 9.2.2011 /Chennai

Excerpts from the Biography

Visit to Kumbakonam

In the eighteenth century, under the rule of Maharashtra Kings in Tanjore, the official site of the Kamakoti Peetam was moved temporarily from Kancheepuram to Tanjore owing to the conflicts in the country in that period. This event happened during the 62nd Acharya’s period. He was enroute to Kumbakonam from Kancheepuram, when he was requested by the Lord of Udayarpalayam to stay in their place for some time. He complied with the Lord’s request and stayed there for sometime as well as in Tanjore. Later, he moved to the mutt building established by then King of Tanjore in the banks of Kaveri. Since that time, Kumbakonam was the temporary place of administrative head quarters of the mutt.

Our Acharya left for Kumbakonam after being pontificated. On the way, he stayed for three days at Tindivanam, the place where his parents were residing. The townsfolk started preparations to receive him even a week before. Hordes of people kept coming to have darshan of Swamiji. They came to have the darshan of Acharya performing puja to the Mutt’s residing deities Sri Chandramouliswarar, Sri Tripundra Sundari Ambal.

The visit to Tindivanam in 1907 by our Swamigal had special implications. The town people who had since seen Swaminathan as a baby, a young boy of twelve years old were now seeing him as Acharya who is a teacher for the whole world. Men, women, children, old people, youngsters all gathered with pride that Swamigal is from Tindivanam and paid their respect to him. The teachers and students from Arcot Americal Mission School eagerly wanted to see our Swamigal. He spoke to each teacher individually, gave them gifts and made them very happy. He gave darshan to all the students and gave them gifts.

Even though the ascetics, who are sitting on the Acharya Peetam are Sanyyasis, it is the culture in our country to treat them like emperors as they have taken the vow to protect the world. In those days, there were elephants, horses, camels, palanquin, gold staff, silver staff, instruments like beri and sangam were in the mutt. Devottees of the mutt residing in Kumbakonam wished to celebrate the pontification of Sri Swamigal in a grand manner in Kumbakonam. The grand celebration was held in the mutt’s auspices on the 27th day of the month of Chittirai in the year Pilavangam (9-5-1907). Innumerable people from different parts of the country participated in the celebration. The last king of Tanjore Shivaji Maharaja sent both his queens on his behalf to pay princely respects to Swamigal. Speical puja services were held around all the temples. Swamigal went to all the temples that day and had darshan. Annadanam was given to thousands of devotees who visited the mutt on that day. Artists and learned scholars were honored with gifts on that day.

During appointed auspicious time, our Swamigal had abishekam done with the waters of Ganges, after which he was seated on a throne. At that time, all devotees paid their respects and gifts to Swamigal. The picture of Swamigal being taken around in a grand procession on the mutt’s elephant that night was memorable and etched in the minds of devotees gathered there.
This is how our Swamigal took upon the title of ‘Jagadguru’ at the young age of thirteen and started his reign at that moment.


Teachings of Mahaperiyava

SAMSARE KIM SARAM? – [What is the essence of worldly life?]

Our Acharya (Adi Sankara), in his “Prasnotra Ratna Malika” raises the question, “Kim Samsare Saram?” (What is the saram in this wordly life?) He provides the reply too. ‘Dear man, you have asked the question, is it not? You go on asking this question always. ‘That is the saram of samsaram’. That is, we have to constantly think,’what is the purpose of our having been born? What for are we born?’. We have to think whether we will achieve that purpose. ‘Why are we incurring sin? Why do we get angry? Why do we get desires? Why should all these come? Can we not be always happy and blissful? – these thoughts occur. We do not understand what the reply to these are.

Everything is for our good only. In a tree the fruit comes from the flower only. When it is a flower it is appealing to the nose and when it is fruit it is tasty to the tongue. The fruit is very sweet. What was the taste before this sweetness? The flower is bitter, the tender unripe fruit is astringent, the unripe one is sour and then the sweetness. When sweetness arrives all attachments go away. In the case of a fruit when it is fully ripe with sweetness it falls down. In the same manner, if the heart is filled all over with sweetness (peace) all attachments will go away of their own. So long as it is sour, there will be attachment. If the unripe fruit is plucked, water will ooze at the stalk. Water will ooze from the unripe fruit also. That means neither the tree wants to leave the unripe fruit nor the unripe fruit wants to detach itself from the tree. But if it becomes fully sweet, the attachment will go. The ripe fruit will fall on its own. The tree leaves the fruit and then fruit also leaves the tree. Both will part with each other without water oozing, that is happily, without crying. One who has evolved step by step and whose heart is filled with sweetness (madhuram) will happily detach himself from tree of samsara. Just as before the fruit ripens, sourness and astringency are required, in the beginning stages, it appears that desires, anger and impatience are necessary!

We cannot get released completely from these things at the early stage when we are victims of these. Even then, we should at least constantly think why these are coming. ‘We now had this feeling, this desire, anger, fame, falsehood! Is there any use by all these? Does this feeling come as something necessary or something ‘not necessary?’ ‘We should think on these lines. If we do not think like this, they will deceive us. We will get cheated.

When it is time for sourness, it must be sour. When it is time for astringency, it must be astringent. Yet just as the tender fruit does not stop with the early stages but keeps on going towards ripeness, we should go on thinking of the love and peace which is sweet. If we go on doing this way, we need not go in search of Moksha. If we are how we should be at different stages, the sweet state of Moksha will come on its own. Instead of that if we attempt at the wrong time, it will be like the tender fruit ripening without reaching the next stage. It will be spoiled. It will not be sweet. Just as Ramalingam sang, ‘will it get spoiled and fall off’ there is no use our making premature attempts to get Moksha and falling off on the way.

It is wrong to remain satisfied with the condition in which we are. But, at the same time when we still carry a heavy load of the past ‘karmas’ it is wrong to be in haste to gain the supreme jnana immediately. We need not desire for the supreme jnana here and now and go in search of it. We will go on performing our duties with the thought that, if it does not materialize in this birth (janma) let it come after several births. We shall follow the Dharma as enjoined by our vedhas. If we do so supreme jnana has to come on its own. Now we are able to see only external activities and appearances. Therefore, let us start with religious rituals which are external activities and the religious symbols that we wear which are also external. We will ripen through stages, from the tender to the unripe and then the ripened fruit and reach the truth that is internal.

Mahaperiyava Miracles

Experience of a devotee - Auditor

Once an Auditor from Salem visited Kanchipuram. He was an affluent person. He was a staunch devotee of Kanchi Mahaperiyava. He does many good things after getting the blessings from the Acharya. He makes a visit to Tirupathi, the abode of seven hills every year to get the blessings of Lord Venkateshwara. He also makes huge savings and deposit the same in the Tirupathi Hundi.

Once he was on his way to Tirupathi. He thought of visiting Mahaperiyava in Kancheepuram get his blessings and then decided to proceed to Tirupathi. He then along with his family reached Kancheepuram and proceeded to Kamakoti Peetam, the Sankara Mutt to have the darshan of our Walking God Kanchi Maha Periyava. The first question our Acharya asked him upon seeing him was “have you started to Tirupathi?”.

He was rather surprised to hear the same from Acharya as he did not even told him that he is on his way to Tirupathi. When he told Paramacharya that he is in fact on his way to Tirupathi. “Are you going to put all the money in the Hundi”? another query from acharya with some hidden agenda. The auditor replied in affirmative.

After a brief pause Paramacharya told him, “That Tirupathi person is already a wealthy person. Hence it will not affect HIM even if you don’t give it to him. In fact there are so many people are there to give him. Please do one thing there is village called “Vaiyur” near Vedanthangal there is a Perumal temple is there currently the temple does not even have enough money even to lit a lamp and perform the daily pujas to the deity, hence the money which you have decided to put in the Tirupathi Hundi donate it to this temple which is in dire need of the funds.

The auditor then started towards Vedanthangal and reached the temple. The temple was in mere shambles and he was literally crying to see the pitiable condition of the temple. He then donated the amount to the temple. Later slowly the temple was resurrected to its original glory and the temple is now known as “Thiru Vaiyavur Prasanna Venkatesa Perumal Temple”.

The auditor visit to Kanchi Mutt before going to Tirupathi was not a planned one. Similarly the Periyava’s instruction to divert the donation to this small temple instead of Tirupathi was a surprise. It is by the divine will all these have happened.

Ten Commandments of Mahaperiyava


1. All the natural elements like Sun, Moon, Sky, etc., all are the divine manifestation of the God.
2. The object which is visible and the object which sees the visible both are nothing but the
Supreme Soul.
3. The Supreme Soul merges with the divine manifestation and shines.
4. One who knows the bliss which pervades everywhere experiences the bliss.
5. Instead of taking Coffee in the morning one can have Wheat porridge or butter milk.
6. The Vaidya Shastra says “Butter milk” is equivalent to ambrosia/nectar.
7. Parents of the bride groom should avoid taking “Vara Dakshina”.
8. One who takes bath and perform “Sandhya Vandhanam” before Sunrise will not meet with

untimely death.
9. The person who knows only the Shastras he is only a Vidwan. One who experiences the

Shastras is a Jnani. One who preaches the Shastras is only a “Pracharak”.
10. One who knows the Shastras well, guides the people to follow them and also practices himself

is known as “Acharya”.

Acknowledgement

Sri Ramesh Subramanian, Coimbatore – For reminding me to write about Sri Mahaperiyava.

Bibliography/Reference

Pujyasri Mahaswamy Divya Charitram – Sri Sambamoorthi Sastrigal, Sri Kuppuswamy Iyer, Sollin Selvan “P.N. Parasuraman”
Kanchimahanin Karunai Nizhalil – Ananda Vikadan Publications
Voice of God – Volume – 1 – Kanchi Mahaswami Peetarohana Shatabdi Trust
Mahaperiyava Manimozhigal – By Sri Swami – Alliance Publications

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