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mudali-ANDAn

Tssundararajan_at_aol.com
Date: Sat Jan 08 2000 - 16:24:56 PST

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===========svAmi mudali-ANDAn (Part 2)================
~~~~~~~~~written by tirumanjanam Sundara Rajan~~~~~~~~
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The 74 'simhAsanAdhipati' personages.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Driven by an extraordinary passion for extending the 
outreach of religion to the laity, and guided by an 
immense faith (mahA-viSvAsam) in the Lord for his guide, 
uDaiyavar succeeded in identifying as many as 
seventy-four extraordinary men to tend the practical
aspects of the religion, and to make vivid and relevant 
the message of religion.

This single stage, a pioneering stage at that, of the 
noble AchArya's career is evidence that the social 
milieu itself was so fertile in traditional scholarship 
and spiritual attainments that it could yield, over a 
limited geographical area, such a high number of scholars 
and savants all at a time, to volunteer for (what had
always been considered as) the materialistically 
unrewarding service of religion.  It is important to note 
that uDaiyavar gave this band of personalities 
the honorofic of 'simhAsanAdhipati', and not any 
condescending title, even though they all prided  
themselves as his disciples only. They were all so many
polymaths, like the figures of renaissance in Europe
and the subsequent Age of Enlightenment.

Each one of the convocation of 74 'simhAsanAdhipati' 
personages identified by uDaiyavar had proved to be 
an extraordinary choice in terms of 

his intellectual contribution to the 'sampradAyam', 

mobilising for construction tasks in the 'divya-dESam', 

alertness in safeguarding the temples (as kOyil kandADai 
aNNan was eventually to stave off repeated attacks of
political and religious marauders from Srirangam) and 
the services, 

delicately cleansing off the centuries-old encrustation 
of societal insulation formed over the vibrant religious 
institutions with a view to demonstrating that 

divinity has no preferences of grace 
as between one or the other of His creatures.     

SrIrAmAnuja, his staff and the charm.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
The high affection in which uDaiyavar held ANDAn and AzhvAn
came out in the episode of uDaiyavar seeking instruction
from tiruk-kOTTiyUr-nambi.   nambi had sternly instructed 
uDaiyavar to present himself all alone to receive
instruction, but on the appointment, uDaiyavar came 
accompanied by ANDAn and AzhvAn.   nambi who was initially
upset, eventually accepted uDaiyavar's humble 
clarification that he had come alone after all, 
only that he carried with him his ascetic staff ('danDam') 
and charm ('pavitram') ~ as he referred to ANDAn and AzhvAn.

In early times in Srirangam, only the temple functionaries 
lived inside the 'sapta-prAkAra', but uDaiyavar made a 
significant departure in favour of three persons, 
by allotting them residential ground in the 
'seventh enclosure' itself. periya nambi (who was an AchArya 
of uDaiyavar, but mentally came to regard his disciple as 
his master instead) was granted occupation of 
SrI ALavandAr's maTha (monastery);  ANDAn and AzhvAn were 
granted land facing nambi 'tirumALikai' on the 
east mADa / chitra street. 

In the shrine of nammAzhvAr in Srirangam, the icons of
madhura-kavikaL and nAthamunikaL are also worshipped by his
side. Likewise, ANDAn and AzhvAn are represented in images on
both sides of entrance to the uDaiyavar 'sannidhi' as well as 
in several pUrvAchArya residences (tiru-mALikai) in Srirangam.

mudali-ANDAn's service
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
uDaiyavar is admired for his administrative acumen, 
revered for his philosophic integrity, and adored for his 
surpassing compassion;  he was like the clouds which bring 
their consoling showers, ~~ "kArEi karuNai-yirAmAnuSa" ~~ 
says amutanAr.

He streamlined the entire administration of properties
and revenues of the 'peria kOil' (Great Temple) ~~
"tiruvarankan Selva-muRRum tirutti-vaittAn".   This was
possible principally because he had entrusted ANDAn with 
the entirety of temple administration, in the capacity of 
SrI-kArya-dhurandhara, or ANDAn kuRaTTu-maNiam.

It was tirumankai-mannan who had initially organised the
temple functionaries into five groups. By the time
uDaiyavar became responsible for the periya kOyil, he
amplified the functions and organised the ten-fold
temple 'parijanam' (functionaries).  They were
(1) tiruppatiyAr, (2) tiruppaNi-seyivAr, (3) bhAgavata
nambi-s, (4) uLLUrAr and todavattimAr, (5) viNNappam
seyivAr, (6) tiruk-karakak-kAiyAr, (7) sthAnattAr,
(8) pattuk-kottu, (9) Arya-bhaTAL, and (10) dAsa-nambi-s.
This reorganisation was known as 'uDaiyavar tiTTam'. 

Since ANDAn was made the chief of the entirety of mudalikaL 
(temple functionaries), dASarathi/ANDAn came to be known as
mudali-ANDAn.