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From: usdeiva (usdeiva_at_ix.netcom.com)
Date: Fri Aug 01 1997 - 16:50:39 PDT
Ref: SrImAn V. Sadagopan's message of to-day. I am glad he plans a posting on svAmi-dESikan's "dEhaLiSa-stuti" dedicated to tirukkOvalUr AyanAr. There are certain crucial places and milestones in the 'sampradAyam' about the course of events leading to our inheriting the unique 'aruLiccheyal' literature. We all know that SrInAthamuni became aware of the corpus of 'aruLiccheyal' right in his own birth-place, kATTu-mannAr-kOyil (vIra-nArAyaNa-puram). This was possible when he received from the pilgrims of mElkOTE/tiru-nArAyaNa-puram the 'key' to the sacred literature, namely, the tiru-vAi-mozhi decad 'ArAvamudE' dedicated to the divya-dESam tiruk-kutantai. It was in AzhvAr-tirunagari that he came into the complete aruLic-cheyal inheritance through the grace of nammAzhvAr. It was SrIrangam which became the cradle and greenhouse of aruLic-cheyal. To cap it all, it was in tiruk-kOvalUr that aruLic-cheyal started getting revealed. When one stands in the AyanAr (ulakaLanda perumAL) sannidhi in tiruk-kOvalUr, the experience is one of indescribable awe which suggests the strident (idam vishNur-vichakramE) macrocosmic aspect of the Lord. The 'sthala-AchArya' is the tirukkOvalUr jIyar who is NOT a san-nyAsin but a 'gr*hastha'. The (ardha-SilA) sculpture marking the 'tiruvaraSu' (tomb) of the kUtastha, the first jIyar, is something to admire for its movement and realistic representation, and which is unlike the heavily stylised and static sculptures we normally see in the temples. TirukkOvalUr is one 'dEhaLi', and I wish to speak briefly about another 'dEhaLi' (the city of [New] Delhi) where I lived for 35 years. An eminent SrIvaishNava scholar and Sanskritist, Shri Krshna-datta Bharadwaj [who has authored an excellent book on viSishTadvAitam], had explained to me that Delhi acquired this name as it was marked out as the passage-way from the Indian port-of-entry (dvArakA) to the Indo-Gangetic plains of AryAvarta. There are many vaishNava tit-bits about Delhi city which I shall eventually share with the bhAgavatOttamA-s of 'bhakti list'. Meanwhile, all strength to the shoulders of Shri V. Sadagopan. aDiyEn rAmAnujadAsan, T.S. Sundara Rajan.