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Date: Fri Oct 25 1996 - 14:05:31 PDT
It should be pointed out that even maTha swamis must be from svayam acharya purusha families. By tradition, only these people are authorized to have samASrayaNam done for people. Mani I am not sure about the word "must" here which implies belonging to such families as a requirement to become a mathAdipati. The 44th Jeer of Sri Ahobila Muth for example had His samashrayam from the 40th and Bharanyasam from 41st Jeers respectively. The present Jeer had His samAshrayam from the 42nd Jeer and Bharanyasam from the 43rd Jeer respectively. If they did belong to SwayamAcharya families then they abandoned the practice. Besides a Jeer can authorise anyone he considers worthy to do samAshrayam. There is one Dr. Venkat Kanumalla who originally hails from a smArtha family, i.e. followers of Shankaracharya, and pioneered efforts to set up the Ranganatha temple of New York for 10 years. He has been authorised to do samAshrayam for people unable to visit India, though such a practice is non existent in his family. Jaganath.