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From: Sadagopan (sgopan_at_computer.net)
Date: Sat Oct 23 1999 - 09:35:32 PDT
THE EARLY YEARS OF SRI MANAVAALA MAAMUNIGAL ******************************************** Thizhak-kidanthAn ThirunaavIRduaya pirAn ThAthar aNNan and Sriranga NaacchiyAr were blessed with a beautiful son in the year 1370 AD. This was an year after Swami Desikan ascended to Srivaikuntam . Seven years later , Sri AdhivaNN SatakOpan was going to be born at Melkote , who will initiate this child into utthamAsramam few years later at Srirangam . The delighted parents gave the name of Azhagiya- MaNavALan , the name of Lord RanganAthA to their child . ThaatharaNNan was a great Sri VaishNavite Scholar himself and initiated his son in to VedAs , VedAngAs and Dhivya prabhandhams . The gifted son took on grahasthAsramam at a young age and moved on to AzhwAr Thirunagari to be a disciple under a great dhivya prabhandham Scholar revered as ThiruvAimozhippiLLai(1307-1410 AD); latter was a disciple of Koora kulOtthama DaasA( 1265-1365 AD), who in turn was a dirct disciple of the renowned Sri PiLLai LOkAcchAr ( 1205-1311 AD), a contemproary of Swamy Desikan . ThiruvAimozhi PiLLai (TVP) was also known as Sri SailEsar or Thirumalai AaLvAn because of his connection to Thirumalai. TVP had settled down at AzhwAr Thirunagari and that is where Azhagiya MaNavALan studied under him ThiruvAimozhi and rahasyArthams .TVP was moved by the Bhakthi of MM for AchArya RaamAnujA and appointed MM as the AarAdhakar / administrator for a special temple he had constructed for Bhagavath RaamAnujA . TVP also asked MM to compose a sthuthi on AchAryA RaamAnujA . Thus arose YathirAja Vimsathi , a moving tribute by MM to Bhagavath RaamAnujA . Soon a son was born to MM and he named the child RaamAnujappiLLai. MM continued his studies under TVP , performed AarAdhanam to AchArya RaamAnujA , worshipped AdhippirAN and Swamy NammAzhwAr at AzhwAr Thirunagari until his own Acharyan attained the Lord's feet in the year 1410 AD. MM was Fourty years old at that time. Soon he left with his family for Srirangam along with his fellow sishyA , RaamAnuja Jeeyar , who later became his own key sishyan under the name of VaanamAmalai Jeeyar . At Srirangam , MM did extensive research on the granthams of PoorvAchAryaas and conducted kaalakshEpam classes. Seven more sishyAs sought his feet as their Achaaryan. Together , they are known as Ashta Dhig Gajams or the mighty elephants guarding the eight directions of earth . These 8 sishyAs of MM are: (1) VaanamAmalai Jeeyar (2) BhattarpirAn Jeeyar (3) ThiruvEnkata RaamAnuja Jeeyar (4)Koil aNNan (5)PrathivAdhi Bhayankaram aNNan (6) YeRumpiappA (7) aAppiLLai (8) AppiLLAr . MM adopted SanyAsramam out of virakthi and the desire to perform kaimkaryam to Sri RanganAthA without any theettu interrupting such kaimkaryams .The prEksha manthram was given to MM by Sri Adhi VaNN satakOpa MahA Desikan . MM exceleld in his pravachanams and was given the honorific titles of Visatha Vaak SikhAmaNI and SarvaJ~na Saarvabhoumar by the scholars of his time for his felicity in intrepreting the Sri Sookthis of AzhwArs and AchAryAs . We referred earlier to Sri RanganAthA's honoring MM with a famous Taniyan used by the sampradhAyins of ThennaacchArya paramparai to this day . During his blessed life , MM wrote commentaries for the three of the 18 rahasyams of Sri PiLLai LokAcchAr ( Srivachana BhUshaNam , Tattva thrayam and Mumukshuppadi), since they are the most prominent . He gave us a vyAkhyAnam for Azhagiya maNavALa PerumAL NaayanAr's "AchArya Hrudhayam ". by then , PeriyavAcchAn PiLLai's commentary for PeriyAzhwAr's Thirumozhi had been eaten up by white ants .MM recreated this commentary for the benefit of future generations. He blessed us with commentaries on AruLALap PerumAL EmperumAn's Sri Sookthis known as Jn~Ana saaram and PramEya Saaram .He wrote a commentary on RaamAnuja NooRRanthAdhi of Thiruvarangatthu amudhanAr . Taathparya DhIpam arose from MM as a commentary on Bhagavath GitA . PramANatthirattukaL, ThiruvArAdhana PrayOgam ,IyalcchARRu, YathirAja Vimsathi , DevarAja MangaLam ,UpadEsa Rathna Maalai , ThiruvAimozhi NooRRanthAdhi were also created by MM. After these kaimkaryaqms , towards the end of his life , MM had such an intense longing (Aarthi) to join the lotus feet of AchArya RaamAnujA out of his deep virakthi from the life on this earth ., He composed at this time , his famous Aarthi prabhandham one paasuram a day and begged RaamAnujA to call him(MM) to his (RaamAnujA's ) sacred feet at Sri Vaikuntam .These are great and moving expressions of MM's NaicchAnusandhANams , which became our " NithyAnusandhAnam " for developing VairAgyam and ruchi for Bhagavath-Bhaagavatha Kaimkaryams . AchArya RaamAnujA responded to the intense prayer of MM and called MM to his feet in the year 1443 AD. Summary of his own Life by Sri MaNavALa Maamunigal *************************************************** In one of the paasurams of Aarthi Prabhandham , MM expressed his own satisfaction with the blessings that came his way due to the blessings of AzhwArs, AchAryALs and the Lord in a moving way and gave thanks in a mind frame similar to Swamy NammAzhwAr in his " uNNUm sOr paruhu neer" and "ThuvaLil MaamaNI Maadam Pathikams : Tennarangar seer arulukkilahaahap peRROm Thiruvarangam ThiruppathiyE iruppaaha peRROm manniya seer MaRan kalai uNavaahap peRROm Madhura kavi soRRppadiyE nilayiaahap PeRROm munaavarAm nanguravar mozhikaL uLLappeRROm pinnai onRu tanil nenju pErAmal peRROm piRar minukkam poRAmaillA perumayaum peRROmE Here MM reflects with happiness over the amazing grace of the Lord of Srirangam ,his days spent joyously at His KshEthram , his blessings to have the Sri Sookthis of NammAzhwAr as his nourishment , his obedient pursuit of the path shown by Madhurakavi AzhwAr with respect to the revenerence for his AchAryan, his treasuring of the upadEsams of poorvAcchAryALs , his reflecting on their deep meanings as the way to spend his time and discarding all other distracting thoughts and living out his life with out generating the asooyai of others . What a splendid and self-effacing summary of his life by this great AchAryan ! SeerArum YethirAsar ThiruvadigaL Vaazhi Maaran Malar Paadham Thaan Vaazhi Yenthai Thiruvarangan poRRppAdham Thaan Vaazhi NaarAyaNa , NaarAyaNa , NaarAyaNa Daasan Oppilaippan Koil VaradAchAri Sadagopan Pramaathi Iyppasi Sukla Paksha ThrayOdasi October 23, 1999 .