You are here: Sri Vaishnava Home Page : Bhakti List : Archives : February 1996

Kuresa Vaibhavam& Sri Stavam : Part 2 of 4

From: V. Sadagopan (75041.3037_at_compuserve.com)
Date: Tue Feb 13 1996 - 19:33:58 PST

Dear Members of the Prapatti group:

I posted an article on the above subject last Sunday.. For 
some reason,the new Compuserve software was not cooperating 
to transmit it 100% .It looks that I have to cut the size of the file
into smaller units to achieve transmission.
Hence I will send this posting in few  "packets". 

Kuresa Vaibhavam (Continued): part 2

The fall of 1995 issue of the Journal of Vaishnava studies had
an excellent article by Nancy Ann Nayar on the "other  Andaal ",
the devoted wife of Kuresa. She was  a role model for Sthri Dharma 
for Sri Vaishnavite women of the 12th century. I will include a few points about

Andaal from Nancy Nayar"s article to provide a backdropfor the observations on
Kuresa. 

Nancy Nayar is a brilliant scholar , whose works we might wish to follow.
She is a keen student of Sri Vaishnava Sampradhaaya as  practised in
the Southern part of India.I am told that  her Book " Poetry asTheology,
The Sri Vaishnava Stotras in the age of Ramanuja" is a "breakthrough 
work ".  She is currently working on Periyavaachaan Pillan"s commentary on
" Stotra Ratna and Chatusloki " of Alawandaar. Nancy Nayar"s article on Kuresa"s
wife  , Andaal  is based largely from the material in Guru Paramparaa Prabhavam,
Koil Ozhugu and Prapannamrutam.

*** Kuresa and Andaal"s life at Kuram& Srirangam

The name Kuresa means the Lord of Kuram. A village or better still 
an Agrahaaram twelve miles ot the west of Kanchipuram is known as Kuram.
Kuresa was born there and was a Garbha Srimaan. He was blessed with
Lakshmi Kataksham and Special bhakthi to Sriman Narayana.

Kuresa inherited a lot of fortune and he put his wealth to good use by
supporting " the lame, blind and the destitute." He worshipped Kesava Perumal,
who was the Archaa Murthy of the temple of his Agrahaaram. This temple was
built by the devout Vaishnava King Nandivarma Pallava the Second . Professor 
Dennis Hudson of Smith College has published a masterly study of the intricacies
of
the Vaikunta Perumal temple built by the same king in another issue of the
Journal
of Vaishnavite Studies. Now back to Kuresa!

According to Prapannamrutam, Perundevi Thaayaar, the consort of Lord Varadaraja
of 
Kanchi temple expressed the  desire to Her Lord to meet the great benefactor ,
Kuresa.
The Lord sent Thirukkacchi Nambi to fetch Kuresa . Latter was thrilled to hear
about the 
Lord"s invitation and proceeded rightaway with Nambi and his wife to Kanchi. As
he 
approached Kanchi, the whole land surrounding Varadaraja"s temple looked like
a land covered with  with Saligraamams. He saw Saligraamams as far as eyes could
see.
Kuresa hesitated to touch that holy land with his feet and returned home. There
he 
gave away all his wealth and adopted Vanaprasthaasramam rightaway .
Afterwards, He set foot on a journey to Srirangam with his wife to meet
Ramanuja..
When they passd through a forest tract during their journey, Andaal expressed
her 
fear of being attacked by thieves . Kuresa said that there was  nothing for
them 
to worry, since they had no valubles of interest to thieves with them. At that
time,
Andaal confessed that  she had brought with her a gold cup for use as a drinking
vessel 
from her former home.Kuresa asked her to give that cup to him and threw that
away
 into the bush  and continued the journey. They arrived safely at Srirangam.
Ramanuja was 
ecstatic , when he heard about the arrival of Kuresa and had him brought to the 
Mutt. There  , Kuresa became the prime disciple of Ramanuja. The Invocatory
verse
(Taniyan ) for Kuresa celbrates the incident of him throwing away the Golden cup
this way: " Ponvattil Tannai Yerinda Puhazhudayon Vaazhiyeh "(May the memory of 
the one,who threw away the golden cup live forever).

Nancy Nayar"s article focusses on the model life of the wife of an Acharya
of the twelfth century and describes the incidents in  her life as  a mother of
Parasara Bhattar and the role she played in the temple affairs at critical times
, after her 
husband joined the holy feet of Sri Ranganatha. Since the focus of this article
is
on Sri Sthavam, I will move on to that main subject in the next posting.

V.Sadagopan