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Re: tondar-adi-podi azhwAr

From: Mani Varadarajan (mani_at_be.com)
Date: Mon Aug 03 1998 - 16:38:42 PDT

[Re: arangam vs. thirumalai vs. thiru-kacci -- this article
     is also be taken in a lighthearted vein!]

This is lovely discussion initiated by Srimaan Dileepan.
All points raised about the "best" perumaaL have so far 
focussed on the number of paasurams, aazhvaars, etc. While
these are worthy points to consider, should we not think of
what our dear Ramanuja himself preferred? Unforunately for
all you Tamil Nadu natives, the kOyil of choice is 
Karnataka's "thirunaaraayaNa-puram / yadugiri / mElkottai", 
the home of lord selva piLLai.  And it is not even a divya 
desam! It was this place that showered its love on Ramanuja 
in his time of crisis.

Ramanuja counselled those who could not follow any other
commandment of his to "at least build a small hut and live
in thirunaaraayaNa-puram".  Dare we disagree with the great
acharya? 

Lest we forget, bhaagavatas from thirunaaraayaNa-puram 
were instrumental in recovering the thiruvaaymozhi.  nAthamuni
overheard a group from mElkottai recite the "aaraavamudhE" 
thiruvaaymozhi in thirukkudandhai and consequently made
it his life's quest to recover, preserve, and propagate
the prabandham!

emberumaanaar thiruvadigaLE SaraNam
thondaradippodi aazhvaar thiruvadigaLE SaraNam

SrIranga-mangaLa-maNim karuNAnivAsam
  SrIvenkaTAdri-SikharAlaya-kAlamegham |
SrIhastiSaila-Sikharojjvala-pArijAtam
  SrISam-namAmi SirasA yaduSaila-dIpam ||

Mani