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Re: Proceedings of the 9th Bay Area NAMA Sri Vaishnava Satsangham

From: Mani Varadarajan (mani_at_alum.calberkeley.org)
Date: Tue Jul 18 2000 - 10:58:07 PDT

Dear Bhagavatas,

I would like to add a few words about our experience with
Sri Sri Tridandi Jeeyar Swami during Swami's visit to the 
Bay Area.  Sri Swami commands a very unique and very appealing
presence, and all of us that day felt it.  There is something
mysteriously charming about him, in a way that completely
removes all of one's reservations and makes him very 
approachable.  Several people remarked to me that they felt
unusually comfortable speaking to him and listening to him, 
much unlike the feeling they get when they visit religious 
institutions in India. 

By far the highlight for us was Swami's leadership of our
goshti in recitation of nityAnusandhAnam and kOyil tiruvAymozhi
on the occasion of periyAzhvAr's tirunakshatram. Swami would
recite the first half of each pAsuram, and we
would recite the second half.  Most of you probably 
haven't heard Swami's voice, so I would like to describe
it briefly. It is very sweet and musical-sounding, so much so
that each word he recites seems to float out of his mouth.
Such a voice is ideally suited for solo recitation of 
slokas and pAsurams. Furthermore, his intonation is extremely 
clear and succinct, and as we saw him, it was clear that he was 
saying each line with each line with great understanding and 
anubhavam. 

Needless to say, it was a treat to the ears and eyes. His
recitation of 'muniyE, nAnmukane' (last padikam of tiruvAymozhi)
as well as the sARRu pAsurams (iruppiDam, etc.) of irAmAnusa
nURRandAdi were particularly memorable.  Due to Swami's kaTAksham,
our goshti recited the pAsurams remarkably well that day, with
Sri Gunaseelan, Sri Sudarsan, Sri T.K. Rengarajan and others
leading our goshti. Our only wish was that Swami could have 
led our goshti in more such prabandha anusandhAnam.

At the conclusion, after vaazhi tirunAmam for Sri MaamunigaL,
Sri Swami glanced at the goshti and asked us to recite
Sri Desika's vaazhi tirunAmam as well, to the pleasant
surprise of our goshti. But perhaps we should not have been
surprised, as Sri Swami is well-known for his large-heartedness
and catholicity of outlook, which far transcend small
differences in traditions.

Sri Raghu Mudumbai personally introduced aDiyEn (me) to Swami 
and mentioned our Bhakti List. Swami said that he had heard of our 
group from several people and encouraged all of us to continue our 
discussions.

All in all, we were blessed to have Swami's mangaLASasanams and 
we are eagerly anticipating his next visit to our area.

aDiyEn rAmAnuja dAsan
Mani

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