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No No !! Number One Divya dEsam - Srirangam
Date: Fri Aug 21 1998 - 12:27:07 PDT

                            Srimathe Narayanaya Namaha

     Dear Bhagavathas,

     Sri Anbil swamy in his article has brought vividly the SarNAgathi to
     SrinivAsan and did try to make us change our mind to vote for
     Thirumalai as the best divya dEsam.

     It may be true that NammAzhwAr did SaraNAgathi at the lotus feet of
     SrinivAsan. But this action is specific to the AzhwAr, i.e.,

     Now read the beautiful pAsuram of AmalanAthipirAn where
     ThiruppANAzhwAr, may start off with ThiruvEngadamudaiyAn, but ends
     saying "...andarkOn aNi arangan, en amudhinaik kaNda kaNgaL
     maRRonRnaik kANAvE".

     Here ThiruppANAzhwAr does not say "en amudhinaik kaNda EN kaNgaL". If
     he had said so it would have been specific to this AzhwAr. But he
     refers to as just kaNgaL. This means the eyes, of anybody, which sees
     Arangan will not see anyone else. By this he brings out the beauty of

     Also we can interpret this pAsuram in this way (This may sound too
     much, but it is only my thought about the pAsuram). The AzhwAr says
     ".. kaNda kaNgaL maRRonRinaik kANAvE". Which means, though the input
     terminal, the "eyes",  are connected with the CPU, the "brain" and
     should act as per the instructions from brain , here they will
     dissociate themselves from the CPU as they - have seen (or) are
     receiving- the most beautiful and vivid input, which is the beauty of
     Arangan, if the brain instructs them to look at someone else.

     Let us get back to our dear Thondar-adi-podi-AzhwAr and ofcourse to
     his ThirumAlai. In the 18th pAsuram the AzhwAr says

     "inithirai thivalai mOdha eRiyum thaN paRavai meedhE
      thanikidanthu arasu seyyum thAmaraik kaNNan emmAn
      kaniyirundhanaya sevvAi, kaNNanaik kaNda kaNgaL
      paniyarumbu uthirumAlo, en seigEn pAviyEnE"

     Here the AzhwAr says that, his eyes, when seeing RangaNathan, fills
     with tears of joy. Well everybody will like this. But the AzhwAr
     curses himself as a sinner because the tears of joy, blocks his eyes
     and prevents him from seeing Arangan.

     Well this action may be specific to the AzhwAr, but note that he
     curses himself as a Sinner just because he cannot see Arangan anymore.
     He is not cursing himself for not doing SarNAgathi, but just for not
     being able to see.

     Also Swami Desikan may have done SaraNAgathi to SrinivAsan with his
     DayA sathakam, but note that when he composed dayA sathakam he had
     only Srinivasan in mind and hence the SlOkam was on SrinivAsan. But
     ThiruppANAzhwAr started off with SrinivAsan and ended up with saying
     what I have quoted above.

     Taking Swami Desikan's case itself, if he was so entralled by
     SrinivAsan why did he not prefer to stay at Thirumalai but stayed at
     Srirangam. Even during the period of the Muslims attack on Srirangam,
     Swami Desikan prefered to stay in Thirunarayanapuram instead of
     Thirumalai. Actually Thirumalai was more safer to reside, at that time
     than compared to Thirunarayanapuram. Account for this can be found in
     the beautiful story "Thiruvarangan Ula" by SriVenugopalan.

     Forget not that our AchArya peetam starting from NAthamunigaL to
     RAmAnujar and down to Desikar and ManavALa mAmunigaL was always at
     Srirangam and not Thirupathi.

     So now I believe you will all agree that Thiruvarangam is the best
     Divya dEsam as none of the AzhwArs have brought the beauty or the
     Soundharyam and the KalyAna gunas of any other PerumAL so vividly as
     was done for Arangan.

     Sri RanganAyaki thAyAr samEtha Sri RanganAtha swAminE namaha

     adiyEn RAmAnuja dAsan

     Thirumalai Vinjamoor Venkatesh