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Agnihotram Ramanuja Thathachariar

From: lakshminarayan krishnaswamy (
Date: Wed Jul 19 2000 - 10:26:44 PDT

Pranamams to all Bhakthas,

I was browsing through the archives of the bhakthi list of 9,10,11th of Nov, 
1998 yesterday, when I happened to bump into a few postings on 
U.Ve.Agnihotram Ramanuja Thathachariar (ART) . I was quite pleasantly 
surprised to know that ART was familiar to the Bhakthi group members also.. 
ART has been acharyan to our family for four generations. In fact it was 
only in June 2000 that he performed Samasrayanam for my son. Before I give 
some details on ART’s qualities, I wish to place some additional 
informations on ART for the information of the members:

1. In addition to belonging to the “Kotikannikadanam” family of Kanchipuram, 
ART’s forefathers belong to the lineage of “Tirumalai Nambi”of Tirumalai. 
ART’s family name is mentioned as:“Thirumalai Nambi,Thirumal Irumsolai, 
2. ART is also the 23rd  Acharya in the Parambarai of “Nathamunigal”.
3. ART was awarded the birudu of “Maha Maho Upadyaya” by the Govt: of India 
– Ministry of H.R.D (Minister Dr. Murli Manohar Joshi) in May 2000 at 
4. The first of the Thathachariar’s (I am unable to readily recall his name) 
divya vigraham has been installed at the Desikan Sannidhi in Lord 
Varadaraja’s  Temple at Kanchipuram.
5. ART in his own words has done Veda Adhyayanam in three Vedas for 75-80 
years. He has done numerous yagnas throught out the length and breadth of 
India. Infact he prefers to call  his religion “Veda Matham”.
6. Besides Ubhaya Vedanta, ART has read extensively – as widely as Das 
Capital, Bertrand Russel's writing, Pope’s writings, Writings on Islam etc. 
His memory is prodigious and he can reel off quotations from any one of 
these texts at the drop of the hat.
7. ART’s wife passed away 11/2 years back. Today you can find him in his 
apartment in Mambalam lost in one book or the other.
8. Despite his advanced age (94) and despite his personal handicap, ART 
comes across as a person having tremendous will power. He has taken upon 
himself at this age to launch a movement (head quartered at Mysore)  based 
on “Vedic Living”.

As regards ART’s personal qualities:
1. He is a very unassuming and an extremely simple person to talk to. He 
always comes across as a person bubbling with energy and hope for the 
morrow. He is a Karma Yogi in the true sense of the word.
2. ART would probably be closely known to some of the top industrialists in 
North and South India.  I have never known him approach any one for any 
personal help. Money is something he has never gone after.
3. I have never heard him bad mouth any one. On the contrary he would have 
some good word about every one he refers to.
4. However ART and controvery have a close relationship. ART is a man of 
tremendous personal conviction and would prefer to tread his lonely path.
5. He is quite eager to share the mine of knowledge that he has with any one 
for the mere asking. Infact he says “I am willing to teach what I know to 
any one who asks for it”.
6. I cannot imagine how a person of ART’s age and handicap can travel so 
extensively and that too by the Indian Railways to as distant places as 
Ajmer, Baroda, Jaipur, and to other interior places in Gujarat and 
Rajasthan. I have never seen him tire out when it comes to the cause. Any 
one who has travelled by the railways to these places can imagine how 
difficult it would be to travel for 2-3 days at a stretch.
7. ART mingles freely with all sections of the populations. Infact they 
adore him for this quality.

I had celebrated the upanayanam of my son in June this year.  In May I had 
gone to ART’s residence to invite him. While I would have loved to have him 
for the funciton, considering his advanced age and his personal handicap, I 
did not have the heart to ask him to come to Bangalore. As usual the 
conversation started with the topic “ Import of Purusha Sooktam”. It went on 
for almost 1/12 hours. My uncle who had accompanied me, finally informed him 
that I had come to his place to invite him for the function. Pat came the 
reply “ Remind me 10 days prior to the function. I shall come to your place 
and conduct the funciton”. I was stunned for a moment, since I had never 
expected this. I quite willingly agreed. When we came out of ART’s house, my 
uncle told me, This is called Acharyan’s “Soulabhyam”. Infact under his 
blessings the  function went of very well in June. All those veda vittus who 
had come for the “Udaga Shanti” said “this is the best “Udaga Shanti” we 
have ever participated.



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