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From: Mani Varadarajan (mani_at_srirangam.esd.sgi.com)
Date: Fri Jun 30 1995 - 11:48:23 PDT
I just posted this article on network news (alt.religion.vaisnava) in response to a question on the Visistadvaita line of acharyas. --- In-reply-to: Eswar Josyula's message of 29 Jun 1995 16:27:35 GMT Newsgroups: alt.religion.vaisnava Subject: Re: Guru-Parampara of Vishistadvaita Reply-to: email@example.com References: <firstname.lastname@example.org> Distribution: In article <email@example.com> Eswar Josyula <76142.1306@CompuServe.COM> writes: > The guru-parampara of the Vishishta-Advaita Vaisnava School is given here. There is a Sloka composed by Srivatsaanka Misra (Kooratthaazhvaan) which pays homage to all the teachers of the tradition, beginning with the Lord down to Sri Srivatsaanka's acharya, Ramanuja. It is recited these days at the beginning of formal worship or study. laksmInaatha samaarambhaam naatha-yaamuna madhyamaam asmadaachaaryaparyantaam vande guruparamparaam The guruparampara is as follows. The first three names in the list, of course, are anhistorical, since they are considered divine personalities in the tradition. The fourth and fifth names are separated by at least two centuries. Nammalvar is said to have handed the Thiruvaaymozhi and other works of the Alvars to Nathamuni by appearing in a vision to the latter. Whether or not this was the case, Sri Nathamuni rescued the Divya Prabandham (as the Alvars' hymns are known) from virtual oblivion and was imbued with the spirit of devotion to the memory of Nammalvar. I have given the common name of each acharya as well as a popular alternative in parentheses. Usually one is in Tamil, the other in Sanskrit. Parabrahman, Sriman Narayana (emberumaan) Lakshmi (periya piraatti) Visvaksena (senai mudaliyaar) Nammalvar (kaari maaran sadagopan) (6th-8th centuries A.D.) ------ strictly historical parampara begins here Naathamuni (c. 900 A.D.) UyyakkoNDaar (pundarIkaaksha) Rama Misra Yaamunaacaarya (Alavandaar) (c. 900-1000 AD) Periya Nambi (MahaapUrNa) Ramanuja (emberumaanaar, udaiyavar, bhaashyaakaara) (1017 - 1137 A.D.) The guruparampara splits off here into various traditions. Ramanuja had 74 principal disciples, each of whom were major teachers in their own right. However, there are some acharyas who deserve special mention. They are listed in two columns, in chronological order. Thirukurugai Piraan Pillaan (Kurukesa) Embar (Govinda) Author of the first commentary on the Cousin of Ramanuja Thiruvaaymozhi, "The 6000". Direct and a great teacher. disciple of Ramanuja. Kuratthaazhvaan Engal Azhvaan (Vishnucitta) (Srivatsanka Misra) Author of a commentary on A master poet and the Vishnu Purana, the most authentic Vedantin who and philosophical of the Puranas. martyred. Vaatsya Varadacharya (Nadadur Ammaal) Parasara Bhattar A great master of Vedanta whose The first acharya lectures in Kanchipuram inspired in this line who lived Sudarsana Suri's exposition of past Ramanuja's death. Ramanuja's commentary on the Author of a commentary Brahma-sutras. \ on the Vishnu Sahasranama / \ as well as several / Sudarsana Suri philosophical works. Atreya Ramanuja (Appullaar) Author of the most lucid | | commentary on the Sri Bhashya, | Vedanta Desika (1268-1369 A.D.) the Srutaprakaasika. | Undisputed master of Vedanta, /------ logic, the Prabandham, poetics, / and aesthetics. The dynamic Nanjeeyar range of his works display his Author of the "9000", brilliance as a poet as well as the second major commentary a scholar. He is one of the on the Thiruvaaymozhi. He brightest stars in the history was formerly an Advaitin, of medieval Vedanta. but became a Visistadvaitin after being defeated in debate by Parasara Bhattar. Nampillai A master expositor of Ubhaya Vedanta, particularly ---------- of the Thiruvaaymozhi. He / is very fondly remembered in ---------------/ the tradition. | | Periya Vaaccaan Pillai (c. 12th century) Vadakku Thiruvidi Pillai Known as Vyaakhyaana Chakravarti, Author of the best-loved "Emperor of Commentators", since he commentary on the wrote lucid commentaries on all the 4000 Thiruvaaymozhi, the hymns of the Alvars, as well as on "36000", also known as Ramanuja's three prose poems, "EeDu Vyaakyaanam". the Gadyatrayam. / / / Pillai Lokacharya (13th century A.D.) Gifted with great foresight, this acharya was one of the most catholic and open-minded of men, especially given the times. He wrote many works, most of which set on solid ground the philosophy of self-surrender, the highest teaching of the Sri Vaishnava religion. Thiruvaaymozhi Pillai (Sri Sailesa) Manavaala Maamunigal (15th century) (Ramyajaamaatr Muni) Perhaps the acharya who had the largest following in the post- Ramanuja period. He spread the philosophy of the movement far and wide, reestablished temple worship in places which were languishing, and wrote lucid commentaries on the works of Pillai Lokacharya.