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Re: your mail

From: Vijay Triplicane (
Date: Fri Jan 12 1996 - 18:41:43 PST


Sri. Sumanth Kaushik wrote at length about so many issues. A very
responsible posting, and a well thoughtover one too. I just would like to
present some of my views on few issues here.

... stuff deleted.

> 3. Support needy temples. Whereas this is a great idea in concept, I
> am not sure if we really ought to get involved in this. In India,
> there are govt. sources of funds for temples. The same cannot be said
> for our muttams and (often) poor vaidikas and their families. The
> muttmas have survived on lands given to them by ancient kings. Now,
> the govt. is takinga way a large portion of this wealth. I hear that
> the Parakala muttam is facing this problem in Mysore. Ahobila Muttam
> also derives its wealth from lands. I am not sure the status of these
> lands. If anything, the tides of affairs are turned against the
> muttams. I think the tempses are relatively better.
> Besides, I just think it is very hard, despite all our efforts, to
> administer funds 15000 miles away. Groups within India have enough
> trouble managing funds 5 km away. We have two levels of trouble to
>  deal with money going from here (the middlemen, and their
> subordinates)

	The main problem that we have is lack of information. Put together
	all of us haven't visited all the dhivya dhEsams. Not many actually
	know of the dilapidated state of our "dhivya" dhEsams. Though i am
	repeating this, the n'th time, i am sure that atleast 50 % of the
	DDs need some kind of attention, the intensity of which differs
	widely. I am talking about those where neither the Govt. nor the
	local matams could offer any help. This is very much true. If we
	take a statistics of the DDs and their basic needs and verify we
	would get a better idea, which is kinda of impossible for us 15K
	miles away. But trust me, from what i have seen, some temples in
	navathiruppathi ( ThirunelvEli), some around seergaazhi, some around
	kancheepuram, the one near madras(!) - thirukkadalmallai have
	serious problems. I heard during my recent trip to India that this
	temple, thirukkadalmallai, the avathaara sthalam of
	bhoothathaazhwaar(?) , a paadal peRRa sthalam is under bhaalaalayam
	for years. due to lack of funds, this state continues. so uthsavams
	and other things cannot be carried out unless the construction is
	complete and perumaaL is made ready(i dont find the right word.) for
	the uthsavams. This is a very sorry state. Our sampradhaayam views
	the perumaaLs as archchaavadhaarams, who have all guNaNGgaLs
	(qualities?!)all these uthsavams, alaNGgaarams, saaRRumaRais,
	thaLigais, and other nithyaanushtaanakramams are done to please HIM.
	Our aazhwaars and aachariyans have praised the beauties of these
	archaavathaarams. It will really bring tears to one's eyes if he/she
	happens to see the sorry state of these archaavathaarams and think
	of aazhwaar's paasurams on that perumaaL simultaneously. A commoner
	who visits such a temple could just shed tears. Can't we , being in
	USA, being away from our great bhoomi, earning in US$s, living in a
	relatively better life than our fellow bhakthaas in India, having
	good spiritual thoughts and bhakthi toward our sriman naaraayaNan do
	SOMETHING for the betterment of these dear perumaaLs about whom our
	aazhwaars have sung heaps of pasurams? As PD had mentioned, the
	rupee Vs dollar makes it even more inviting to help such causes. 
	u have written that there are govt. sources for temples which is not
	true for all the temples. once again we need some kinda statistics
	to support this. I am not saying that matams have money. But atleast
	the sishyaas can take care to some extent, no such sishyaas for

	coming to managing the funds ( if at all we decide to collect some
	money as a group for these noble causes!):
	- being far away it is difficult to manage
	- lotso problems with muRais between bhattars.. too complicated
	- some kinda tax hassles for such donations
	- lack of information about the status of these temples
	- no direction as such on what is needed and where and how to

	I think the organization that i talked with provides reasonable
	answers to most of these problems. 

	They are based in Madras.
	They have in their committee highly learned scholars and are blessed
	by the heads of mutts ( TT Vasu(Music academy,..?), Sureshkrishna(tvs),
	vELukkudi krishNan (does very good upanyaasam, scholar),
	KrishNaprEmi (great scholar and engages in lot of such activities,
	known to many in our group ), N.C. ragavachari (advocate (for
	MGR!!)) , Mrs. YGP (good administrator, principal PSBB school). They
	have an official organization and would have done proper homework in
	terms of collecting info about the needs of the temples (only The
	108), status in terms of vasthrams, nithya aaraadhai, thaLigai,
	infra structure etc.. Doing for 45 DDs presently , had been doing
	for more than 3 years, we can make use of them as follows:
	use them to get necessary info
	we can then decide whether we need to help them in their ventures
	if so, they can act as a channel for the funds that we have
	collected . 
	the unnecessary tax hassles, the proper management of funds for the
	battars, the supervision of the work being carried out, and all
	other associated difficulties will be taken care of by them. 
	They have some direction which they are going on for the past 3 +
	years. They as such dont have any expectation of any sorta help from
	us. I just talked to one person and also i didn't commit anything. i
	just mentioned that a group here(US) would probably plan to do
	something along these lines, let there not be duplication of efforts
	for the same cause, esp the one in which they are in a better
	position (not monetarily of course, but in terms of knowledge and
	proximity and legal advises govt. contacts ..etc)

	All these things can be done after properly assessing their
	credibility, their intentions regarding the projects, their actual
	project details etc. Only if we are satisfied with everything, we
	are going to proceed with this. In order to doo these, I had asked
	them to send info about them, some brochure or some sort, what they
	have done, what are their future plans etc.. Once i get it i will
	submit it for the group's perusal and then we shall decide. I feel
	that this makes things simple that once we have similar intentions,
	we just use them as a channel to spend our money according to our
	intentions. they do the dirty work actually!!.

> ------
> In short, I am very concerned about handling money and having our
> organization be responsible for actual disbursement of funds. We
> should merely be a conduit for organization for established
> organizations in India.
> Our role should be only one of service. We should feel happy to do the
> dirty work of distributing information, collecting money, seeing that
> it gets where it shold get. ALll this requires no funding, no
> membership fees, nothing -- except service. This is perhaps thankless.
> We may very well remain nameless and faceless, but I think we can be
> truly successful this way.
> Sumanth
> =================End of Sri Sumanth Kaushik's mail=========================
	In fact this could act as my summary too. Thanks


	Vijay Triplicane