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Eyewitness account of the celebrations of the thirunakshatram of H.H ParavAkOttai Srirangam PoundarIkapuram Srimad Andavan Sri Gopala Desh ika Maha Deshikar - Part 1

From: Balaji CG (CG.Balaji_at_blr.spcnl.co.in)
Date: Thu Apr 05 2001 - 05:23:35 PDT

Sriranganaayaki Sametha Sriranganathan Thiruvadigale Sharanam
Emperumaanaar Thiruvadigale Sharanam
Swamy Deshikan Thiruvadigale Sharanam
Ramanuja Darshana Guruparamparaayai Namaha
Abhinava vasiShTar Srirangam PoundarIkapuram Srimad Andavan ParavAkOttai Sri
Gopala Deshika Maha DeshikAya namaha

adiyEn had the bhAgyam of witnessing the recently concluded shatAbhiShEkam
celebrations of our dear acharya H.H ParavAkOttai Srirangam PoundarIkapuram
Srimad Andavan Sri Gopala Deshika Maha Deshikar. This is a small series
presenting an account of the same.
The first post gives a detailed picture of the celebrations on 29-03-01, the
day before the thirunakshatram.
adiyEn kindly requests all the readers to overlook any mistakes that are all
mine.

===============================================================
Part - 1 - Thursday 29-03-01 - A day before the Thirunakshatram
===============================================================

Thiruvarangam, the foremost of the swayam vyaktha kshetrams and vaishnava
divya desams, having got its name as Thiruvarangam due to the fact that the
Lord's omnipresence is more established here than in 'kShIrAbdhi', 'sUrya
maNdalam' or even in the hearts of great devotees,

Ref - kShIrAbdhE: maNdalAdbhAnO: yOginAm hrdayAdapi |
      ratingatO hariryatra tasmAt rangamiti smrtam ||

celebrated by Azhwars as the holiest of abodes where the Lord manifests
Himself in all the forms of His dashAvatAram,

Ref - tEvudaiya mInamAy AmaiyAy yEnamAy ariyAy kuraLAy
      mUvuruvil rAmanAy kaNNanAy, karkiyAy mudippAn kOil
      (PeriyAzhwar Thirumozhi)

also celebrated as the throne of the Lord, this kShEtram was enshrined with
a great jewel in it's crown as it stood witness to the wonderful
celebrations of the Shathabhishekam of asmadAchAryan H.H ParavAkOttai
Srirangam PoundarIkapuram Srimad Andavan Sri Gopala Deshika Maha Deshikar.
A celebration spanning over seven days and which saw a coming together of
all the Acharyas of Swamy Deshika SampradAyam. a galaxy of over 150
SriBhAshyAdhikAri-s, a sea of veda - prabandha - upanishat pArAyaNa gOshTi,
and an ocean of bhAgavathA-s, bhaktAs and abhimAni-s.

----------------------------------------------------
29-03-01
--------
ThiruvArAdhanam
---------------
At 8-00 am in the morning Srimad Poundarikapuram Andavan started PerumAL
thiruvArAdhanam with the vEda, prabandha, upanishat and Ramayana pArAyaNams
starting simultaneously. Around 10-00 am the gOshTi awaited the arrival of
other Acharyas. Then arrived H.H Srimad Rangapriya Maha Deshikan followed by
H.H Srimad Abhinava Vageesha Brahmatantra Swatantra Parakaala Maha Deshikan
and then H.H Srivan Satakopa Sri Narayana Yatindra Maha Deshikan. It was so
nice to see so many Acharyas on the stage for the
veda-prabandha-upanishat-thiruppAvai sARRumuRai that was conducted in great
style.

Book releases
-------------
The thirunakshatram souvenir was released by H.H Sri Rangapriya Maha
Deshikan.
Sri Rangapriya Maha Deshikan spoke beautifully on the greatness of
asmadAchAryan Srimad Poundarikapuram Andavan. H.H also elaborated on acharya
vaibhavam with references from Deshika's works, Ramayanam, Mahabharatam and
Gita.

Srimad Azhagiya Singar then released the second volume of 'chillarai
rahasyam'. Srimad Azhagiya Singar then spoke about the book and also about
some intricacies of prapatti shAstram and celebrated the greatness of
asmadAchAryar Srimad Poundarikapuram Andavan. Srimad Azhagiya Singar prayed
to Aranga that the 100th year shatAbhishEkam celebrations of asmadAchAryar
Srimad Poundarikapuram Andavan should also be celebrated in the same grand
style and also expressed his wish that with the anugraham of Nrusimhan, he
would like to participate in it the same way as this time.

Lakshmi Hayagrivan MangaLAshAsanam
----------------------------------
All the achAryas then arrived at the Ashramam sannidhi where Lakshmi
Hayagrivan of ParakAla matam, worshipped by Bhagavad Ramanujar and Swamy
Deshikan, presided in the golden dolai. The sARRumuRai here was very
enjoyable.
Andal gOshTi then started the recital of SriRanganatha Paduka Sahasram.

Vidwat Sadas
------------
At around 3-30 pm in the afternoon, the acharyas assembled at the sabha
mantapam. A grand vidwat sadas was conducted for almost 3 hours.

Dolai Kannan MangaLAshAsanam
----------------------------
At 7-00 pm in the evening dolotsavam for Kannan presiding at Ahobila Matam
and worshipped by Ramanujar was arranged at the Ashramam.

PoundarIkapuram Swamy's upanyAsam on Kannan
-------------------------------------------
Srimad Poundarikapuram Andavan then spoke most beautifully on KaNNan. He
drew rare parallels from the Bhagavatam, Mahabharatam, Gita, Shruti and our
poorvAchArya srisookti-s.

Selected excerpts from this upanyAsam
-------------------------------------
Srimad Poundarikapuram Andavan initially spoke about the manifestation of
the Lord in His vyUhAvatAram as Sri Lakshmi Hayagrivar. H.H celebrated the
greatness of Sri Lakshmi Hayagrivar as the one who gave us the Vedams and
the one from whom our jnAna paramparai starts.

H.H then proceeded to mention the most important among the dashAvatArams -
NrisimhAvatAram, RamavatAram and KrishnAvatAram.
H.H continued to compare the usage of the word 'adbhutam' by our
poorvAchAryas with respect to these avatArams.

H.H started with NrusimhAvatAram and said that the word 'atyadbhutam' is
used to describe the magnificence of Nrusimhan, whose avatAram lasted only
for a few seconds.

Then came the turn of RamAvatAram, when H.H said that in this avatAram the
word 'adbhutam' is used starting from the time of VishwAmitra prakaraNam,
from where the actual avatAra kAryam begins. H.H also celebrated the
avatAram of Sri Rama as one in which the Lord teaches everyone the way to
lead a life practically within the confines of Dharma and Nyaya.

H.H now elaborated upon Sri Krishna avatAram, as the avatAram where the word
'adbhutam' is used right at the time of the Lord's incarnation. H.H referred
to the slokam - "tamadbhutam ...... vasudEva aikShata"
and provided some of the facts in support of the usage of the word
'adbhutam'.

The following are some of them -
1. The Lord upon incarnation had eyes as beautiful as a lotus
2. The Lord incarnated as a baby with 
a) Four hands
b) Conch, disc, mace etc (Shankha, chakra, gadai etc)
3. The Lord had Srivatsam
4. The Lord adored 'koustubha maNi', 'pItAmbaram'
5. His thirumEni (body) resembled the colour of a water bearing cloud
6. He had a crown with precious gems
7. He had the most beautiful ear-rings
8. Well groomed hair
9. He was also bedecked with other ornaments like the arm-ring etc
10. He spoke to His parents at the time of His incarnation as a baby
11. Started His deeds of incarnation (avatAra kAryam) like the destruction
of ShakatAsura etc right from the time of His birth.

Book Release
------------
Srimad azhagiya Singar then released the book 'RAmapiRAnai kaRpOm' authored
by asmadAchAryar Srimad Poundarikapuram Andavan. Srimad Azhagiya Singar
later spoke about the glories of Laksmi Nrusimhan, greatness of Kannan and
Sri Ramar. H.H also celebrated the great work of asmadAchAryar and shared
some of the most beautiful insights that H.H found during the review of the
book.
Srimad Azhagiya Singar during his speech celebrated Srimad Poundarikapuram
Andavan's work and expressed that he enjoyed going through certain chapters
in the book and found it to have many rasa-anubhavams from Valmiki Ramayanam
also including Kamba Ramayanam.

Srimad Rangapriya Maha Deshikan then spoke about the KaNNan with special
references from the BhAgavatam and also enjoyed the glories of asmadAchAryar
Srimad Poundarikapuram Andavan.
Acharya sambhAvana and Poundarikapuram Swamy and Rangapriya Swamy performing
mangaLAshAsanam to KaNNan followed this.

Elaborate arrangements were made by Srimad Azhagiya Singar for bhAgavatha
tadIyArAdhanai.

Next - The Thirunakshatram Day

Swmamy Deshikan Thiruvadigale Sharanam !!!
vAzhi vyAkhyAmuddirak kai !!!

--------------------------------------------------------------
           - SrImate rAmAnujAya namaH -
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