You are here: Sri Vaishnava Home Page : Bhakti List : Archives : February 2000

Re: Fwd: Re: Life of Kuresan

From: Mani Varadarajan (
Date: Wed Feb 09 2000 - 11:10:47 PST

Sampath Kumaran wrote:
>  Sir, Very good question! But adiyen hasn't got the
>  foggiest idea as to what could have been Kuresan's
>  real age. 

Frankly, if you don't have the foggiest idea what Kurattalvan's
life span was, you shouldn't unnecessarily insist that there is
evidence that he was younger than Ramanuja, without properly
doing research into the *original texts*.

This is what I meant earlier by giving the pUrvAcharyas their
due when writing on the Bhakti List.  If you wish to give a 
solo exposition of history or philosophy, carefully study and
consider the words of the monumental scholars of yore and make
sure you have understood them as much as possible before you
go about your musings.

>  Adiyen would guess that according to what
>  learned members like Sri.K.M.Narayanan and A.Bharat
>  have told us after checking with their sources in
>  the 'guru-paramapara' records etc., Kuresan was
>  probably anywhere between 120 and 135 years old!!

>  Frankly adiyen does not know what to make of all
>  this since I have also read that, according to
>  estimates of demographers and census-experts, the
>  average life-expectancy of people in India before the
>  19th century was never more than 45-55 years.

You are confusing "average" with remarkable cases such as
Kurattalvan and Ramanuja.

I am sure you are aware that the lifestyle of the average
Indian markedly differed from that of Vaidikas such as 
Ramanuja and Kurattalvan.  Even in this day and age, we see 
many nonagenarian and centenarian sannyasis and Vaidikas
of all sampradAyas. It is not new news that a carefully 
controlled diet combined with a disciplined daily routine can 
do wonders.

This being the case, it is not beyond the realm of imagination
that Kurattalvan lived for well over 100 years.

In this respect, in the absence of any other information, we should
place at least a little bit of faith in the ancient biographies,
which state at least the relative lifespans of each of these