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First Day of the Brand New Year , 1999 !( Some Musings )

From: Sadagopan (sgopan_at_computer.net)
Date: Sat Jan 02 1999 - 15:15:33 PST

BahudhAnya Samvathsaram , Dhanur Maasam
Sukla Paksha Chathurdhasi , PourNami Thithi
Mrugaseersha nakshathram ,AmbaramE TaNNeerE
Thiruppaavai Dinam , Siddha Yogam ( Jan 1 ,1999) 

Dear BhakthAs : 
 
There are two PourNamis this month( Jan 99 ) , 
which is a rare phenomenon . The second PourNami
of this month is known as the Blue Moon in 
the Western parlance . Once in a Blue Moon is
the adage that goes with this rare occurence .
Until now , upanyAsams of our AchAryAs were
like this blue Moon for us.That is why , I am
thinking about the blue Moon in this context . 

In ThiruppAvai , reference is made to the Full 
Moon thrice ( the first , twenty second and 
the last paasurams )because of the symbolic richness , 
saantham and sowmyam and auspiciousnes 
of the full Moon referred to in the Vedams .
Atharva Veda manthram ( XXII.1) refers to Moon 
as the gladdener of the Universe.Moon is indeed 
the holder of the SomA juice vital for the great 
Soma Yaagams that are seven in number  :
AgnishtOmam, AthyagnishtOmam , Ukthyam , 
ShOdasI , VaajabhEyam , AthirAthram and 
AbhdhOryAmam . 

Similar to the case of the three times reference to
the ThingaL ( Moon ) in the ThiruppAvai , we are 
indeed blessed to have three upanyAsams 
of our two revered AchAryAs during this
sacred month of Marghazhi ( Jan 2,9 and 16 ).
Let us digress briefly on the significance
of the Moon in our Vedic tradition .  

The Moon's connection to the Supreme Lord and
its role in the cosmic order and purpose can
be understood this way :

The Svayambhu is the self-born Lord with 
no beginning , middle or end ; the Parameshtin
( the supreme ruler ) is this Svayambhu; He yokes
the Sun ( the firey principle ) and the Moon 
( the abode of SomA , the  sacrificial elixir ) .
Together , they become part of the Cosmic Sacrifice
( YaJ~nam ). In this Cosmic sacrifice , the Moon , 
which is the essence of life (Somaa) is identified with 
life-giving water (rayi ), while Sun is recognized as
the breath of Life ( PrANA ). Both the Sun and Moon are also
considered as two of the three eyes of Sri Lakshmi
Nrusimhan according to Nrusimha Taapaneeya Upanishad .
Our AchAryAs are the most important ones to present 
us to the Lord with Moon and Sun as His eyes 
through the acts of Pancha samskAram and
SaraNAgathi .  

Our AchAryA's voices were rare like the Blue Moon until now.
With the SaraNya Dampathi's kAruNyam , we are now blessed 
to hear their sanctifying voices and receive their 
Svasthi Vachanams and anugraha bhAshaNams right 
in to our living rooms .Srimans Dileepan ,MuraLi 
Rangaswamy , Anbil Ramaswamy Sri V.n.Venaktanathan 
and others have been instruments in the Divya Dampathi's 
hands to bring us closer to our SadAchAryAs . 
Let us offer our sincre thanks to them and look 
forward to hearing our AchAryAs more frequently 
from here on .

The role of Modern technology 
******************************

Modern technology has erased the physical distance that 
separates us and thus our homes have been blessed with the 
anugrahams of our forever caring AchAryAs .

In this year 1999, let us seek the blessings of AchAryAs 
and through them our Divya Dampathis for success in 
the utilization of the power of the Computer and 
Communication technologies to capture , prserve and disseminate 
our Kula Dhanams and bring them within the reach of all 
Sri vaishNava Families , wherever they are . The extraordinary 
array of Computer/Communication talents amidst this 
assemblage of BhakthAs amidst us is awe inspiring and 
surely , we can channel this energy and enthusiasm
to address the concerns of our AchAryAs regarding
preservation and growth of our ancient sampradhAyam .  

In his upanyAsam today , H.H. the ANDavan of Poundarikapuram
Aasramam referred to the need for protecting many 
source granthams that are at the risk of becoming extinct
( Luptham ). Our AcharyAs are a vital link to these granthams 
and are prepared to help transform them from palm leaves 
manuscripts to electronic content or to printed format .
Their scholarship , guidance and blessings are
vital to these projects .

The Importance of BahudhAnya year in the cycle of 60 years 
***********************************************************

H.H. Sri Azhagiya Singhar pointed out to us 
in his inimitable way the sacredness and singularity 
of this year (BahudhAnyam ). He split the word BhaudhAnya
as BahudhA + anya(m)( different in many ways to other years .
Some of the reasons for this uniqueness  are :

1. Celebration of the 600th anniversary 
of the establishment of Ahobila Matam 
and the initation of its First AchArya ,
ThirunArAtaNapuram  SatakOpa Jeeyar by the Lord 
Himself at His divya desam of AhObilam 

2. The recovery of the ArchA mUrthy of 
NammAzhwAr from a deep sunai by the fist Jeeyar
and the conferral of the prefixes in his title 
as Adhi VaNN by Adhi Naathan of Thirukkurunkudi 
and NammAzhwAr respectively .

3. AchArya RaamAnujA arrived at ThirunArAyaNapuram 
in another BahudhAnya year ( 1099 A.D ). 
He consecrated the divine archA murthy of
ThirunArAyanan on a BahudhAnya Thai Punarvasu day .
On January 30, 1999 ( BahudhAnya Thai month ),
Punarvasu constellation sacred to Sri Raamachandran
is in ascendance .The 900th anniversary of AchArya 
RaamAnujA's consecration of Selvap PiLLai is
being celebrated on the grandest scale at
ThirunArAyanapuram .Both Sriman Alwar of our group 
and his scholarly father , Sri Lakshmi TatachAr 
invites every one of us to particpate in this 
extraordinary function .

We have started the AchArya RaamAnujA CD ROM 
in this context to celebrate his life and Sri Sookthis .
With AchArya RaamAnujA's blessings , we hope to 
complete this work by mid Febraury , 1999.

4.One Hundred and twenty years ago ,two 
great AchAryAs were born in another BahudhAnya
year . They were the revered 42nd Jeeyar 
( InjimEdu Azhagiya Singhar ) and Thiruk KOttiyUr
( Goshtipuram ) Swamigal.

5. Here in USA , the SaraNAgathi Journal started 
in the Isvara year celebrated its first anniversary
in this BahudhAnya  Year. MalOlan Net was created 
in this sacred BahudhAnya year .The Moola BhErams of 
Sri RanganathA temple at Pomona , NY will be arriving 
to take residence in their temple BY NEXT WEEK in
this BahudhAnya year . The jala Vaasam, dhAnya 
( bahudhAnya ) vaasam of these archAs prior to 
prathishtai has to take place soon .Those who are 
knowledgable on these ceremonies or know Bhattars , 
who have performed such ceremonies at Buffalo ,Bridge water 
and other temples are kindly requested to contact me or 
Dr.Venkat Kanumala at your earliest convenience .

6. In India , ThiruveLLUr SamprOkshanam took place this 
Bhaudhaanya year with the support and participation by many 
Bhakthi group members . Major support was given by the Ahobila Mutt
of North America sishyAs for the 600th Funding anniversary projects
of the Sri Matam . MaaNIccka Kondai and Mutthangi abhAraNams 
were presented to Sri Bhumi Devi Sametha Sri Oppiliappan 
in this BahudhAnya year; Special AbharaNams were presented to 
ANDAL of Sri VillipputthUr at the same time . A special 
web page was created for ANDAL of SrivillipputthUr .

7. Back in USA , Thondar Kulam and RaamAnujA
missions were founded this year through the initiatives 
of Sri Varadhan of Denver and Sri NadhAdhUr Maadhavan
of Virginia respectively .NaamA organization grew and spread its
wings further to serve the Sri Vaishnavite youngsters even further .
Professor VenakatachArya , Sri KrishNa kalale ,
Professor M.G.Prasad and adiyEn have been asked to serve 
in  a new committee known as the publication committee 
to create special archives for youngsters eager to 
learn more about our sampradhAyam .Any specific suggestions
from you all will be helpful to shape the directions
of work of this new committee.  

8.Around the world , Singapore  and Bahrain resident
Sri VaishNava families excelled in their support of 
many fund raising endeavours .The intensity of their
devotion to Sri Vaishnavite  kula dhanams is extraordinary .

Future kaimkaryams to be initated in BahudhAnya year 
*****************************************************

The many and BahudhA anya talents of the various Sri VaishNavite groups
could be most valuable to pursue some of the following projects .
Please let me know, which one would be of interest to you
in particular : 

1. Scanning of the old issues of Nrusimha PriyA ,
Sri RanganAtha PaadhukhA  to protect them from 
being lost to future generations .Many great AchAryAs
have contributed extremely important articles on
our siddhAntham .The acid paper used to print them
is causing  a lot of damage .Scanning and storing them 
iin an electronic format will be one of the greates service
to our kula Dhanams .A queryable data base to browse
these treaures would also be most helpful for
Researchers .

2. Support of the release of granthams that are 
becoming extinct , before they disappear .This is 
what H.H . Poundarikapuram Andavan was referring to .
Release of new versions of out of print granthams 
also falls under this category . 

3. Completion of the work on 108 Divya desam CD ROM
initated in December 1995.

4. Creation of a Multimedia CD ROM On Swami Desikan's
life and Sri Sookthis .Much of the material ,
particularly , the audio content is already 
available , thanks to the special efforts of 
Sriman nadadhUr Maadhavan and Sriman Dileepan . 

That should keep us busy for  a while .
It will be a pleasure to receive inputs from 
the members on other kaimkaryams related to 
the AruLiccheyalkal of our AzhwArs and 
AchAryAs .

With the very best wishes for another fruitful year of 
Kaimkaryam to our AchAryAs and the SaraNya Dampathis ,
DaasAnu Daasan , V.Sadagopan