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From: muralidhar rangaswamy (rangaswamy_m_at_hotmail.com)
Date: Fri Dec 12 1997 - 10:02:50 PST

Dear Friends,

Recently, we were blessed with informative notes on Tirumangai Azhwar's 
Vaibhavam. Sri Dileepan provided a gem from the Azhwar's 
Naichyanusandanam. I join Sri Dileepan and Sri Bhuvarahachariar Swamigal 
in saluting Tirumangai Mannan on the occassion of his 
Tirunakshatram.
 
It is noteworthy to observe that Sri Tirumangai Azhwar received 
Upadesham of the Ashtakshara Mantram from the Lord himself at the 
Ashtakshara Kshetram. Lord Narayana describes the Mahima of the 
Ashtakshara Kshetram in his Upadesham to Garuda in the 
following manner:

Srirangam Venkatadrischa SrimushNam Totaparvatam
Salagramam Pushkarancha Nara NarayanAshramam
Naimithim Chetimeh Sthananyasow Mukti Pradanivai
YetusvashtAksharaikAka: VarNamurthir VasAmyaham 
TishtAmi KrishNa KshetrE PuNya Sapthakogatha:
AshtAksharasya Mantrasya SarvAksharamayah SadA

(The seven Mukti granting Kshetrams are Srirangam, Tirupati, SrimushNam, 
Vaanamamalai, Salagramam, Badri and NaimisharaNyam. I 
reside as one Aksharam of my AshtAksharam in the form of the Murthi at 
each of these places. However, I reside as the entire 
AshtAkshara Mantram in Tirukannapuram)
The Lord of this Kshetram is SowrirAja Perumal.  

A tremendous accomplishment of Tirumangai Mannan was his pilgrimage 
to the Kshetram of Salagramam. The Azhwar was able to easily traverse 
the treacherous snow covered path to this Kshetram with  
the Ashtakshara Mantram on his lips. Despite the convenience of air 
travel, present day comforts and modern amenities a pilgrimage to 
Salagramam is arduous. This is a testimony to the power of the 
Ashtakshara Mantram and a beautiful illustration of how the most 
gargantuan tasks can be easily accomplished by the Lord's grace.      
I was pleased to see Sri Rengarajan's note on the list. I welcome 
the efforts of Srimans Rengarajan and Varadhan in sharing with us 
their insights (from Acharya Upanyasams) on the thirty delightful verses 
of Goda Piratti and I look forward to enjoying their notes 
in the days to come.

Namo Narayana,

Muralidhar Rangaswamy  

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