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Keeping the Tradition alive !!
Date: Sun Sep 17 2000 - 01:00:32 PDT

Dear Bhagavathas,
In continuation may i offer some more points and also elaborate on the earlier ones ?

I)Institutions to relax certain Traditions and Devotees to respond:

i)Dress code --- this is a very controversial issue but one which has to be faced head on.Excepting the inner circle of Vaideegas, Bhattars, Kainkaryaparas etc., it is advisable to relax this and let the sishyas and admirers assemble at these institutions in a manner in which they will do so in temples and leave it to their conscience to adopt a suitable and dignified dress code.Adiyen can imagine the howl of protests here but in my considered opinion this is one of the most important reasons why an overwhelming number is moving away.Let us not impose and let them do it voluntarily and let us not claim that the Sannithyam of our Mutts and Asramams is lost if we relax the Dress code.This is absolutely hypocritcal.Let us NOT forget that our community as a whole has lost much of its Sannithyam when we moved away from our chosen tasks and are conducting the functions of all other Dharmas.If any Bhagavatha wants i am prepared to engage in a separate dialogue and not clutter up the !

ii)On the other hand the sishyas and other admirers who throng these Asramams and Mutts must know that they are expected to conduct themselves with Dignity and Decorum like for example the manner in which they will do so even when they attend the Sree Sathyasai or other gatherings.The same groups conduct themselves with diligence there but create all commotion and controversy here and that has to stop. 

iii)e.g.,on Thirunakshatram and other important days there are such huge crowds thronging the place without any discipline and utter pandemonium prevails, adiyen knows having tried( and trying ) to regulate these rather unsuccessfully over the past 25 years and more.
These are highly enlightened people who come in last and want Theertham and other Prasadamas first, this is repeated ad nauseum year after year in contrast to the total discipline and silence prevailing in these other Institutions ( by more or less the same community persons ).How will any youngster have any respect for an Institution which tolerates or suffers such a conduct from their sishyas or admirers?

iv)Let us resolve that we educate everyone of our family members to follow a strict code of conduct and maintain dignity and decorum when we are inside these premises as many our youngsters ( trained as they are to respect authority , systems , discipline etc., in their daily lives ) are totally alienated and (either) stop coming OR ( more likely ) move to these Sri SathyaSai type Asramams.Adiyen has become notorius amongst the Sri Vaishnavaite Asramams precisely  because his rather unsuccessful efforts to regulate the gatherings have alienated many of these persons who want special entry and special treatment !!

II)Sampradaya Pravachanams:

i) This is the most critical aspect and needs extraordinary planning and care.Granted that the bond between the Acharya is an emotional and personal one, we still have to find a way in which such Upanyasams are conducted in a simple and concise manner.Without meaning any disrespect to anyone, let me submit that my Acharyan has tried to do this and has done so over the past 12 years, keeping it simple (KIS), gauge the level of the audience and deliver an Anugraha Bashanam never lasting more than 5 or 6 minutes and yet conveying the Essence to the sishyas and admirers.I still remember a scintillating but six minute Bashanam,delivered in the year 1995, on Bhagwan Sri Ramanuja in the house of a sishya (who invited our H.H. to perform Dolotsavam ) wherein a huge wall to ceiling portrait of Sri Sathya Sai adorned the pooja room towering over even the Salagramams.

ii)His long duration Upanyasams are reserved for Special occasions like the Margazhi ( & the U.S telecasts) on Thiruppavai, Kalakshepams on Sri Bashyam /Srimad Bhagavath Vishayam / Geetha Bashyam / Srimad Rahasya TreyaSaram , a gathering of Great Scholars etc.,We have seen many thousands of these persons being utterly captivated by these but the saddest part of this ( not that H.H. cares about it )is that some Senior Vidwans( ? )and their cheerleaders criticise such short Anugraha Bashanams and give dark hints about the level of  H.H.'s vidwath !! For them the longer the Upanyasam ( no matter how boring or irrelevant or how many persons are disillusioned )the better and this is the true state of affairs.( Sri MGV to note please ! )

iii)Preferably there should be total coordination between the various Mutts and Asramams and the Vidwans so that a comprehensive program can be drawn up and all geographical areas can be covered and simple Upanyasams can be delivered to reach all sishyas of both lineages and this effort should be Blessed by the Acharyas as a common effort because content is most important - you may attract the gathering of the young and old to assemble but to hold them and to retain them in our fold permanently something more subtantive is required and that is a continuing and everlasting program of Sampradaya Pravachanam and nothing short of it.The core corpus of the Asramams and Mutts must be utilised to support this project which requires the most complete and unwavering attention of all concerned. Fortunately this seems to be the season when hundreds of thousands of youngsters, disturbed by their material success, are turning inwards to seek the answers to some basic questions (OUTLOOK wee!
kly ran a 12 page article recently on this phenomenon ! ) and we have not yet totally missed the bus!

More on some essential tasks related to the protection of many debilated Divya Desams and the Bhattacharyas thereof !



           - SrImate rAmAnujAya namaH -
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