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Tirumanghai alwar - part 2 - by Prof. Bhuvarahachariar

From: Krishna Kalale (kkalale_at_qualcomm.com)
Date: Mon Dec 08 1997 - 10:45:45 PST

>Date: Mon, 8 Dec 1997 13:57:43 +0500 (GMT+0500)
>From: Bharat A <kbharat@giasbg01.vsnl.net.in>
>To: kkalale
>Cc: sbelur@capaccess.org
>Subject: from BHARAT
>
>Dear Sri Kalale
>
>In continuation I'm enclosing the final
>part of Sri Bhuvarahachariar's article
>on TIRUMANGAI AZHWAR.
>With best wishes
>BHARAT
> 
> 
>     TIRUMANGAI AZHWAR (contd)
> 
>     (B)The Festival called TIRU ADHYAYANAM
> 
>     Tirumangai Azhwar is unique in his own way.He had the
>     distinction of constructing some of the huge ramparts
>     around SRI RANGAM TEMPLE.He had known Sri NAMMAZHWAR
>     and his eloquent eulogies to the Lord i.e., his four
>     poetic compositions TIRU VIRUTTAM,TIRU VASIRIAM,
>     PERIYA TIRU VANDADI and TIRU VAYMOZHI;and considering
>     them to be not mere tamil poems but the very incarnation
>     of the Sanskrit Vedas,he sought Divine Sanction for
>     considering them so from Lord Ranganatha.The latter gave
>     His approval and therefore the entire Srivaishnavite
>     world consider these four poems as the very embodiment
>     of the four vedas.As the four vedas have six accessories
>     Siksha Vyakaranam etc to facilitate the correct comprehe-
>     nsion of the vedas,Tirumangai Azhwar's six Divine Poems
>     were written by him as ANGAs (accessories) to the ANGI
>     (4 poems of Nammazhwar).
> 
>     Thus he rendered yeoman service to Nammazhwar.He also
>     brought Nammazhwar's idol from AZHWAR TIRU NAGARI to
>     SRI RANGAM in a palanquin with all due honours and 
>     paraphernalia and conducted the TIRUVAYMOZHI Festival 
>     called RA-PPATTU starting from Vaikuntha Ekadasi day
>     (roughly during the month of January every year) for
>     ten days with due pomp and splendour.
> 
>     Every day AZHAGIYA MANAVALAN (utsava idol) starting from
>     His inner holy chamber,used to reach the huge hall where
>     the erected thousand pillars stand and support the massive
>     structure giving it the appearance of the Sri Vaikuntha
>     Loka august assembly.He would listen to the melodious
>     recital of one hundred divine songs of Tiuvaymozhi
>     each day and return to His sanctum.On the last day Sri 
>     Nammazhwar's attainment of Salvation (Vaikuntha Prapti) was 
>     enacted by carrying his idol and making it prostrate before
>     the lotus feet of the Lord,and covering it with Tulasi
>     petals to the accompaniment of the mellifluos recital
>     of the last 20 songs of the Tenth Centum of Tiruvaymozhi
>     where Sri Nammazhwar speaks of his attaining salvation in a very
>     picturesque manner. The idol would then be taken back
>     to Azhwar Tirunagari.
> 
>     Later on Sri NATHA MUNIGAL the first acharya,through his 
>     prayer sought and obtained similar Divine Sanction for
>     the other 3000 verses of the Azhwars and extended the
>     festival for ten days before Vaikuntha Ekadasi also
>     where these verses were recited during daytime,this
>     portion being called PAGAL PATTU.During the period
>     of Sri RAMANUJACHARYA ,he ordered this festival to
>     be conducted in all Sri Vaishnavite temples,naming
>     it TIRU ADHYAYANA UTSAVAM.This is in vogue even to
>     this day.
> 
>     Come and worship Kaliyan and the temples honoured by
>     him at least once during this festival.
> 
> 
>     (C)TIRU NEDUN DANDAKAM
> 
>     This is the last of the six poetic compositions of
>     TIRUMANGAI AZHWAR and is universally considered his
>     magnum opus by any standard.DANDAKAM is a type of 
>     poetic work in Tamil with certain grammatical presc-
>     riptions;there are two types KURUN (minor) DANDAKAM
>     and NEDUN(major) DANDAKAM.This work of Kaliyan excels
>     all other works in the use of rhetorical devices and
>     richness of meaning.
> 
>     Sri PARASARA BHATTAR, who vanquished the learned Advaitin
>     MADHAVACHARIAR (subsequently called NANJEEYAR) of Karnataka 
>     in debate, was the greatest exponent of this poem.He used to give
>     eloquent discourses on this poem;on hearing which AZHWAR
>     TIRU-VARANGA-PPERUMAL ARAYAR the learned Acharya of Sri
>     RAMANUJA exclaimed,struck with wonder," Oh! I had no
>     chance to hear such an excellent and explanatory lecture
>     on this poem from any other Acharya till now.He excels all
>     others.Oh! my good fortune!." This comment bears ample 
>     testemony to the excellence of both the poem and the
>     discourse.
> 
>     The poem consists of 30 tamil stanzas divided by the
>     commentator into the First,Second and Third Decades.
>     In the First,the author speaks in his own words,in the
>     Second through the mouth of Nayika's Mother and in the
>     Third,assuming the role of the Lord,s Beloved (NAYIKA
>     BHAVA).In this part the Nayika plunged in misery due
>     to separation from the Lord,spends her time chatting
>     with her companion,describing to her the events of her
>     union with the Lord.Sri PARASARA BHATTAR classifies these
>     three Decades as referring to the stages of "macchittah"
>     "mad-gata-pranah" and "bodhayantah parasparam" mentioned
>     in GITA 10.9.
> 
>     Sri BHATTAR,after vanquishing Madhavachariar in debate
>     in Karnataka traveled back on foot in great hurry to be
>     in time for the Tiru Adhyayana festival.It was the day
>     previous to the start of the Festival and was an Amavasya.
>     He,entering the temple,prostrated before the Lord and
>     submitted before Him that his herculean efforts to subdue
>     the mighty Advaitin had borne fruit through His Grace.
>     The Lord,who knows all,pretended ignorance and desired 
>     to know the secret of his success.Bhattar replied,"with
>     the help of Tiru Nedun Dandakam". The Lord too desired
>     to hear the erudite exposition and ordered him to give
>     a discourse in His August Assembly.Sri Bhattar complied;
>     hence we find to this day the recitation of the commentary
>     also along with the Nritya(dance) of the poems by the
>     ARAYAR SWAMIGAL.This is is repeated on the 10th day of
>     the PAGAL PATTU.
> 
>     These stanzas apart from being rich in meaning are also
>     full of sweet sound and hence very melodious to hear.
>     Daily recital of this work is sure to instil deep devotion
>     and longing for union with the Lord,which will get us His
>     everlasting Grace.He will see the Azhwar himself in the
>     reciter and shower His choicest blessings on him,as He
>     did in the case of the Azhwar.If we dive  deep into this
>     poem we will find therein all the pearls, the chaste 
>     principles of Sri Vaishnavism, which would surely secure
>     for us all good things here and hereafter.
> 
>     May the Azhwars Grace dawn on all of us.
> 
> 
> 
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