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Re[2]: keeping our tradition alive
Date: Tue Sep 05 2000 - 17:18:10 PDT

     Dear Sri RR
     You have said the following and here are my doubts

"I offer these points for careful consideration by the Bhagavathas:
i)the practice of Sri Ramanuja Darsana has become very very 
complicated, costly and confined to the privileged few,"
     What do you think is costly here. Please do not think that this an 
     arrogant question. adiyEn believes that there is no cost involved at 
     all in following Sri Ramanuja Darshana. On the other hand, I believe 
     this is the low cost sampradhayam. We need not even offer anything 
     from our end to Sriman Narayanan. Why? That will be a very big answer 
     and needs to go into the details of the sampradhAyam. However to put 
     it simply, Sriman Narayanan doesn't expect anything from us. He only 
     expects the love and affection from us towards Him. You call Him and 
     He is here to help you. Remember the case of GajendrAzhwAr.
"ii)the world has changed more in the past 10 years than it has in 
the previous 100 years and people want fast solutions for 
     Agreed but what we need to do is, we should bring all the youths who 
     are going wayward by explaining the greatness of the sampradhAyam. It 
     lies only with the elders of this day to make the elders of the 
     future. We don't even bother about educating our offsprings in our 
     SampradhAyam and then if we say people want fast solutions then we are 
     to blame ourselves. In this case, as adiyen once said that let us give 
     the sampradhAyam to those who want it and like it. We cannot expect a 
     non-Srivaishnava to immediately understand our tenets and embrace our 
     sampradhAyam. And naturally learned people in our sampradhAyam knows 
     that we are not to demand anything from Him. If we are not to demand 
     anything there where is the question of getting a fast solution. If we 
     consider every happening as His thiruvuLLam then why should we bother 
     about the happenings. 
iii)in an environment where there is constant pressure on every 
aspect of a person's existence,people expect solace and 
fulfilment of the soul which they think they get in these 
institutions and not in ours,
     I agree with you in this point. However, it will be only those people 
     who does not understand the basic tenets of our sampradhAyam, who go 
     to these institutions. The reason , if they belong to a SriVaishnavite 
     family, is they have not been taught about our sampradhAyam properly 
     by their elders.
iv)the daily rituals are seen as very very elaborate and complex, 
they are unable to have an access on a one to one basis to seek 
any answers to the doubts that they have as these Acharyas are 
always busy with their duties,
     Yes on an overview it looks though it is very elaborate and complex. 
     But remember that there are very easier ways that even Swamy NampiLLai 
     followed to do thiruvArAdhanam. His thiruvArAdhanam is only the Dvaya 
     mantram , with "Sarva MangaLa vigrahAya" in between the poorva and 
     utthara vAkya. Also Sri Krishna says, "patram, pushpam, palam, 
     thOyam..", whatever you give I accept. But give it with a purity of 
     heart. So it all lies in our thoughts. I could even say that there is 
     no other sampradhAyam that is as easy as our sampradhAyam. The 
     easiness, one sees in the other institutions are purely illusional and 
     attributes once again to the lack of understanding of our 
     AdiyEn tends to disagree with the point that our AchAryAs are always 
     busy with their duties and that they do not respond to our doubts 
     immediately. Yes as an Acharya and a guide for other people to attain 
     salvation he has some prescribed duties and he needs to do them. But 
     adiyEn knows very much that they respond to all our doubts and even 
     some times take personal interest and explain to us. My personal 
     experience with Sri Velukkudi Krishnan swamy is an example to this. 
     Inspite of his very very busy schedules, he did gave me more than 30 
     mins of his precious time when adiyEn had some doubts (he had not even 
     met me earlier nor had any acquaintance with me) and so is Dr.Sri M.A. 
     Venkatakrishnan swamy of ThiruvallikkENi, who is equally busy.
     It is only we who has to approach them correctly.
v)only via some Upanyasams and Kalkshepams are they able to get 
some insight into the deeper meaning into all these but mostly 
they are unable to understand these,
     adiyEn was exactly in the same mind frame before attending upanyAsams. 
     I thought, it will all be sanskritized tamizh and I will not 
     understand anything and hence did not attend any upanyAsam. Then a 
     very good friend of mine said that, we can understand it without any 
     problem, but only thing is that we should attend it regularly, in the 
     initial stages even though we fail to understand certain words or 
     philosophical ideas. Yes, that was true. After I attended some 
     upanyAsams initially, of course with out understanding some points, 
     now adiyEn is in a position to understand most of the things that is 
     said in an upanyAsam. " Chithiramum kaip pazhakkam".
vi)thus the Guru - Sishya exchange is getting narrower and 
     Yes, it is getting narrower, but only because of the lack of knowledge 
     on the relationship of the sishyA with his guru. So if we correct 
     ourselves, I think we can really get rid of this problem.
vii)the case of the overseas Bhagavathas is even more difficult 
as very very limited numbers ( out of many thousands of 
ourpeople) actually visit these Asramams or Mutts that too out of 
parental compulsion!
     adiyEn totally tends to disagree with this point. In fact many 
     bhAgavathAs who come to India from overseas, spend most of the times 
     with only their achAryAs and divya dEsams. I do know of Sri Dileepan 
     Parthasarathy, who once went to India for a month long trip and all 
     that he did was just sit by the side of Sri Ahobila matam jeeyar 
     swami, his Acharyan and spend time in his kainkaryam. Someone may say 
     that he is an exception, but adiyEn says that he is only one of the 
It is possible to highlight many more issues here but we have to 
realise that for every Mani Varadarajan or Shyamsundar 
Sreenivasan or M.S.Hari in our fold there are hundreds of equally 
talented, brilliant and committed youngsters going elsewhere.The 
question is whether we are ready to come together and form a 
common platform to motivate and to organise a movement back to 
the basics and this is a very very difficult issue.
     Agreed, that is why it becomes more important that we should atleast 
     cultivate the understanding about the sampradhAyams to our future 
     generations. Sow the seeds earlier and reap it earlier too. But 
     regarding the ones who have gone way ward now, yes, it is a difficult 
     task but nevertheless we should try and find a way to get them also 
     into understanding the sampradhAyam.
     Once again, adiyEn feels that it is the self realisation and a proper 
     guidance which will bring an end to all the above problems and will 
     lead us to the salvation path. With out giving a proper guidance to 
     those people there is no point in saying that our sampradhAyam needs 
     to change or relax its principles.
     adiyEn rAmAnuja dAsan,
     Thirumalai Vinjamoor Venkatesh

           - SrImate rAmAnujAya namaH -
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