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The Life of Kuresan

From: sampath kumar (sampathkumar_2000_at_yahoo.com)
Date: Sun Jan 23 2000 - 03:59:47 PST

Dear friends,

The 26th of January happens to be the
"tirunakshatram", the birthday of Sri.Kuresan or
KurathAzhwAr, the foremost disciple of "yatirAjar",
Sri.RamanujAchArya.

The story of Kuresan's life has been told many times
over the centuries. Nonetheless it is a life-story of
such nobility and inspiration that it will bear
repetition this year on his "tirunakshatram" and in
all years to come.

So here is a sketch of the life-story of Kuresan:

Kuresan hailed from the hamlet of "Kura" (or "kooram")
near Kanchipuram. He belonged to the clan of the
Haritas and to a well-to-do, land-owning and
propertied
family that lived in peace with its neighbours and
friends. Kuresan had a gem of a person in his young
and comely wife, AndAlammA. They lived a happy and
contented life in Kura. They were both known in Kanchi
for their unstinting philanthrophy and kindness. They
were both ardent devotees of Kanchi Varadan, the
presiding deity of the holy city.

Early in his life, Kuresan came under the spell of
RamanujAchArya who at that time was living in Kanchi.
It was the time when Ramanuja was slowly emerging as
the propagator of a new school of thought. He was
spreading a whole new philosophy quite different from
the sterile monism of Advaita which people at that
time were growing weary of. Bands of disciples and
followers were already growing around Ramanuja.

Kuresan quickly became a disciple of RamanujAchArya.
The two took to each other easily and warmly. Under
Sri.Ramanuja's guidance, Kuresa was soon initiated
into the rigorous study of the ancient Vedic scripture
and more especially the "meemAmsa-sutrA-s". 

A strange bond of kinship developed between master and
student over the years they spent together in Kanchi.

In his mid-life, due to a variety of personal and
social reasons, Ramanuja took to "sannyAsA" and was
called away by the community of SriVaishnavas in
SriRangam to rally them all into a cohesive force
there against the onslaught of religious bigotry waged
by the Saivite State at that time. 

Thus, in deference to the commandments of his elders
in SriRangam like Mahapurna, and Kanchipurna in
Kanchi, Ramanuja decided to migrate to SriRangam. He
left Kanchi for good never to return in future except
for brief visits. 

Kuresan's close relationship with Ramanuja thus drew
to a close. Seeing off his guru Ramanuja to SriRangam,
Kuresan returned to his hamlet of Kura and commenced
his living his life as before.

But Lord Varadarajan and his Consort Perundevi thAyyAr
had other plans for Kuresan.

(contd)

dAsan,
Sampathkumaran  

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