Archive for February, 2010


Dear Perumal,

The other day I was trying to peel boiled shepankazhangu (colocasia), which has been one of my favourite dishes (of course no dish is as sweet as the one offered to Narayana! πŸ™‚ ). Suddenly, it felt as if I had with me a collection of several conches of Yours! Let me illustrate with a picture of one of them.Β  Truly, as Narayana had emerged even fromΒ  a pillar in Narasimha avataram, one can see God wherever one wants to see Him!

Dear Perumale,

True devotion is not limited to lighting a lamp everyday or just taking Your name isn’t it? It is much more. True belief would imply that I have entrusted my entire life (the current birth cycle atleast!) to You. It would imply that adiyen should fear no more, hate no more, be angry no more, be worried/depressed no more. On the other hand one should be filled with endless energy, purpose and the sort of conviction with which to do the things which have to be done. Karma has to be done with a conviction that Perumal will take care of everything.

But You have showered me with supreme blessings. Adiyen has been counting. I have managed to visit atleast 7 temples in the last two months, which I had originally not intended to. Why would You take me to these temples? Let me enlist them:

1. Kooram. I had badly wanted to be at Kooram during the 1000th year celebrations of Sri Kuresar, and to get a glimpse of his divinity. But never thought I would make it. And You took me to Kooram. I experienced the twin delight of having seen Sri Ramanujar AND Sri Kuresar’s thirumanjanam side by side. What punyam have I done to have been granted that?

2. The same day, adiyen had the bhagyam of having gone to Thirumazhisai. Veetrirundha Perumal with ubhaya naachimars! That was the sight of which I had the blessings. There was a tiny Hanumar in a sannadhi which is called ‘Visa Anjaneyar’ by a few. It seems this Hanumar blesses one success in the Visa interviews! But then, a Sri Vaishnava should ask of Moksham and Bhakti more than any other worldly things ain’t it? πŸ˜‰

3. I visited the Srinivasa temple at Mylapore, for the first time in my life.Β  Usually I would only go to the Sri Adi Kesava Perumal temple! So both perumal’s had given their darshan on the same day.

4. I visited the Parthasarathy temple, a Divya Desam right at Madras, which I hadn’t bothered to visit during my earlier stay there. You made it a point to send me there right on Kurathazhvan’s 1000th birthday!

Perumal as moolavar is present along with Rukmini and brother Balarama on one side. On the other side and beside perumal are – His other sibling Sathyagi, His son Prathyumna, His grandson Anirudha. The lord in the form of Venkatakrishnan sporting a moustache does not carry the discus (sudarshana chakra) as Sri Krishna had vowed not to use it, but only the conch (panchajanya) in the right hand, which reverberated in the battlefield during the Mahabharata war. Sri Parthasarathy as utsavar has wound marks from the battle depicted on His face.

Isn’t it here that Sri Asuri Kesavacharya and Srimathi Kanthimathi had prayed for a son and Sri Parthasarathy ensured that our very own Udayavar – Sri Ramanujacharya was born?!

5. You took me to the Champaka Dharna Swamy temple on Bannerghatta Road. What an ancient temple. I was indeed blessed.

6. Yesterday, You took me to the Aprameya Swamy temple in Karnataka, a few kms outside Bangalore. I had a Darshan of Navaneetha Krishnar there as well. I had never heard of the temple before. Aprameya Swamy sannidhi was quaint and nice.

The Navaneetha Krishna sannadhi at the Aprameya Swamy temple hosts a unique moolavar deity of thavazhara (crawling) baby Krishna. It is said that praying to this form of the lord would ensure the birth of a baby in the house. Tiny cradles are tied to the ceiling of this sannadhi.

7. Yesterday You also took me to a dream world. You made me pine for Vaikuntam. You showed me your divine form of Sri Ranganathar at Sri Rangapatna.

Sri Ranganatha temple, Sri Rangapatna is situated at the origin of the river Kaveri. Also known as Adi Ranga, this temple has the Goddess Kaveri depicted at the feet of the lord. This temple forms part of a trinity of the lord in the form of Sri Ranga on the banks of this river. The other two are Madhya Ranganatha (at Sivanasamudra, in the banks of the middle part of the river Kaveri) and Antya Ranga at the Sri Rangam temple (at the banks towards the end of the Kaveri river).

Ranganatha!! I could not believe I had never seen you in this form before, and was planning to go to Sri Rangam for the first time this year. And You had to take me to Sri Rangapatna first!! Ranganathare… Narayana… what can adiyen say to express the disbelief and admiration in having had your darshan at so many places!!!

I am at a loss for words. I am in disbelief. I am not sure how truly devoted I am to You. I love You but am I doing enough to sustain my devotion? But You, in Your abundant kindness, have given me a darshanam at so many temples! I think of it as some sort of a message from You, that You will make things happen. And that I am meant to be with You. πŸ™‚ All I want to do for comfort is hold your feet in respect, and lay my head on your lap, oh perceptor, father!

Champaka Dharna Swamy!

Today adiyen had the privilege of stepping into the Champaka Dharna Swamy temple. This is an ancient temple situated in a quiet street off Bannerghatta road, a little beyond the Bannerghatta National Park. The temple was supposed to have been built around 900 A.D by the Cholas. The lord is so named because of the abundant presence of Champaka flower-bearing trees in the area during ancient times. The priests informed us that the temple Bhamotsavam festivities take place in the month of March. (There is also a hill behind the temple which houses a Lakshmi-Narasimhan temple which unfortunately I hadn’t the privilege of seeing. But definitely will, another day!)

Here I saw You, Perumale, MahaVishnu, with Your consorts – Sri Devi and Bhu Devi. Thank you for the darshan. Tomorrow as well, I would like to see more of You. Let’s see if it has been destined!

I love you Perumale.

Note: The moolavar deity pictures are always taken from paintings/other published temple sources, never directly through adiyen’s camera as it is not allowed.

Sri Rama Jayam at Jayanagar

Dear Perumale,

Today, adiyen had the bhaagyam of visiting an anjaneyar temples where there was a Ramar sannadhi as well. If not at the temple, Rama as an amsam of You was the central figure in my mind. I thanked pavan putra Hanumam for having taken care of you. What a mighty soul! Adiyen also had the opportunity to meet and talk to other believers. As well as use the words ‘Dasaanu daasan’.

Today You sent me to a temple.

Today You gave me the company of other Sri Vaishnavites.

Today you gave me bliss and happiness in the world of Sri Vaishnavism, however brief it may have been!

Adiyen truly believes You are sending me these signals and opportunities. Thank You so much. Even if nothing very obvious comes as a signal, I do realise on a daily basis that I love You. And I have been given this birth only for You. You are my central goal. You are the centre of my existence.

Sri Rama Rama Raamethi

Rame Raame Manorame,

Sahasranaama thathulyam

(Sri) Raama naama varaanane!

Srimathe Emperumaanar thiruvadigale sharanam sharanam sharanam prapadye!

Daasanudaasan – Ramanuja Dasyai

A day has not passed…

Dear Perumal,

Even if these lips have not uttered a single sloka or line in praise of You, adiyen would like You to know that a day has not passed in recent times when I have not thought about You. Adiyen is constantly aware of Sri Ranganathar’s greatness and benevolence.

Adiyen is like Arjuna (a far cry from him though), in wanting to seek answers from You, in looking up to You with bated breath, moving closer to realisation in very tiny steps, by the day.

Sri Ranganathare! Lord of the lords! Cause of all! Bearer of all! Master of all! Please show some generosity in letting adiyen serve You, attend to You at Your beck and call (though adiyen cannot imagine You making any demands of your devotess, except to expect true bhakti).

Ramanujasya charanau sharanam prapadye!!

Udaiyavare!

Udaiyavare!

Today adiyen felt a sudden sense of being separated from you. Why am I separated from you and Perumal? Adiyen would like to stay in the abode of Emperuman and Emperumaanar! I was in tears thinking of this separation. But adiyen understands that there is some purpose for which I have been given this birth. Adiyen is not sure whethere there were births before this one, or there would be births after this. But I’m mighty happy and filled with joy to be able to realize the greatness of Ethirajar and Perumal.

Ramanujare! To be united with all the Bhaagavatas, Bhagavan and you would be my ultimate wish. And my ultimate goal in life.

Indeed am I blessed to utter the name of Ramanujar and Perumal. Blessed to know the ultimate truth about their greatness. Blessed to worship them. Blessed to be even half as ‘crazy’ in bhakti towards Perumal as ‘Pey’azhwar was.

Udaiyavare! I absolutely adore and worship you. Wish adiyen had been one of your disciples when you had descended in your avataram on earth. Atleast a temple sweeper? Or an ant in the temple? πŸ™‚ I truly wish that had been one of my previous births. But then by now adiyen would have been with you then. πŸ˜€

Anyway. Having being born into this world, it has to be endured. Adiyen would keep trying, till a physical end to this body, to be a true Sri Vaishnavite. Not one who is proud, egoistic, angry and claims to be a Vaishnavite (which I had been initially). But one who is humble, kind, generous and honest.

Srimathe Narayanaya Namah l

Srimathe Ramanujaya Namah l

Mudaliandan Thiruvadigale Sharanam l

Azhagiya Manavalane,

Truly, kallilum azhagu! Only the form of Sriman Narayana can render extreme beauty to even a stone.

Aren’t You the only beautiful one. How the foolish mortals (adiyen included) spend large parts of their lives thinking about their external appearance. Yes, one needs to be clean and presentable. But to develop self-confidence on the basis of how ‘smart’ one looks, is but an unreal concept. Each day has been a day of realization, that this body is not me. It has been given by You. And, that the body does not define anyone. There is a popular saying ‘beauty is only skin deep’. But our Sri Vaishnavite philosophy does not stop at that. This body belongs to You. Since You act through it, adiyen should only do things to make one worthy of belonging to Your divinity.

Adiyen has always thought about the right things one should do with the body given by You. Well, one would not abuse it in anyway. One would not crave for anything to satisfy indulgent bodily demands. One should take good care of the body in terms of cleanliness, maintenance, health-nutrition and dress appropriately for appropriate occasions. This would mean that skin show and body-building have no place here. Basically, anything done with the intention of looking good to the outside world, rather than because it is the correct thing to do, would be too self-indulgent and act as a hindrance to spiritual practice. The purpose behind what adiyen does should be either to add glory to Sriman Narayana, or in the name of karma. But then karma yoga also adds to the glories of Narayana!

Having said all that, Azhagiya Manavalane! There is none more beautiful than you! None more handsome than the Ranganatha who wed Andal.

Azhaga…azhaga! πŸ™‚

A song and a wish

Narayanathe Namo Namo, Bhava Narada sannutha Namo Namo…

Currently one of my favourite songs! I am back to learning music after a gap of many years. I re-started mainly because my voice was cracking up. But then I think I am continuing to learn to sing to better my voice – to be able to sing more songs for You!

By policy, and belief in Sri Vaishnavism, I do not want to ask anything from You personally. But I just really need to get into a productive line. I have to be able to support people, as well as contribute to kainkaryam – both of which adiyen considers part of my karma. Please get me into that path at the earliest, dear Perumal.

Had I been given a path where I needn’t have earned, the only line which would describe the ideal thing to do:

‘Emperuman pon malai mel yethenum aavene!’.

I would truly like to dedicate my life to service to You. And the life after as well!! Anyway, doing one’s karma is also a path to serving you. As by serving this body and soul in a proper manner, I would be serving that which is owned by You, the Seshi!

Sri Ranganathasya Charanam Sharanam Prapadhye l

Ramanujare! Charanau Sharanam Prapadhye l

Koorathazhwane!

Perumale,

With this blog my lord, Adiyen does not wish to go on a self-centred trip of my life’s problems on the internet space. I want to have conversations with You, and write them down at an accessible space. It does seem to me sometimes that all conversation with people does not seem to be help in a productive solution to any of the problems in this Bhuloka! Therefore, I talk to You! When can a normal day in this human world pass without talking to You!

Today I got to experience the negative emotion of anger. Controlling emotions is a tough task. It is indeed difficult but essential to realise that pain and anger has roots in ego. And humility is a solution to a lot of problems. I would be blessed to be even half as filled with the great human values that Sri Koorathazhwan possessed.

Koorathazhwane! I saw your thirumanjanam with Ramanujar by your side at Kooram last month. This was in connection with your 1000th birth anniversary. What a divine blessing that was! Aaha! πŸ™‚ I was in a trance. I considered myself extremely fortunate and infinitely blessed.

I thought that the very blessed act of being in the temple during the thirumanjanam was enough to help adiyen get a grip on this life, the karmic path adiyen has to follow in this life. Would I ever be able to have even half of the noble characteristics that you have. Even half. Koorathazhwane! How was it possible by you to have been the way you were, having taken birth in the Kaliyuga, among mortals. How?! I shall forever be your fan. I shall forever be in awe of you. I shall forever feel indebted… indebted to follow in your footsteps. If I have not tried to live life by your principles, I have not touched even the dust of the feet of a true Sri Vaishnavite.

Sri Rama Jayam l

Srimathe Ramanujaya Namah l

Dear Ranganatha,

This is officially the first post. Saying a ‘hello’ to you is more significant than saying a big hello to the world. But by saying a hello to you, is this soul not communicating with everything and everybody, that/who flows from You? πŸ™‚

Adiyen has started a new blog after a long time. Earlier attempts at maintaining one have failed, mainly because I felt whatever was written was of no value whatsoever. With this blog, adiyen, as a Sri Vaishnavite aspirant, and a perumal lover, will seek to apply Sri Vaishnavism in daily life. Religious/spiritual study is one aspect, but its practical application in life is what has been extremely challenging. That is what I am trying to meet.

Enough said on the first post. Well, I would be talking to You offline as well. Just thought I would put it in words at a place I could access from any part of the world. Or atleast the world that I know of right now! πŸ˜‰

Okay, ungal thiruvadigalai vanangi adiyen shall leave this space for now.