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Re: kalai

From: Mani Varadarajan (
Date: Mon Apr 19 1999 - 01:34:07 PDT

> Is it true that all srivaishnavas wore only the tengalai thiruman before =
> the split?.Who was mainly responsible for the split?

In all probability, NO. There were many different ways of
wearing the thirumaN or Urdhva-puNDra, as attested to
by Sri Vedanta Desika himself in his Sat-caritra-raksha.
There is archaeological evidence for both forms, as
well as many other varieties (including a thirumaN
without any SrIchUrNam at all).  

The crystallization into two forms probably happened
slowly over a period of years, settling down after
the 'kalai' division solidifed in the 16th and 17th

There is also no _one_ person mainly responsible for
the split.  Such splits are natural as religious traditions
expand to more than a small group of followers.  The 
seeds of the philosophical division probably existed
even in Sri Ramanuja's time; the social and political
split started primiarly in the late 16th century and
intensified in the 17th and 18th centuries.

By the way, many of these issues have been discussed
before.  I urge members to first search the archives
and then ask a question if they still feel unsatifised:

rAmAnuja dAsan