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Tiruppavai and Thailand

From: Mani Varadarajan (mani_at_alum.calberkeley.org)
Date: Thu Sep 28 2000 - 14:57:02 PDT

Dear Members,

I had read a few years back of a connection between
Tiruppavai and Thailand. Evidently, the Tiruppavai was
recited as part of the Thai coronation ceremony. Today,
I was searching the Net for information corroborating 
this when I stumbled across this astonishing bit of
news:

        From "Dr.N.Kannan" <nkannan@ifm.uni-kiel.de>

                                If it might interest you, several
        centuries ago, Sri Vaishnava Brahmins from Srivillippuththur
        area of Ramanathapuram District, migrated to Thailand.

                                Their descendants are still in Bangkok.
        They are known as the Thai Brahmin community.

                                They are the Royal Praeceptors (RajaGuru)
        of the Thai kings. It is to be noted that the Thai kings although
        claim descent from the Solar Royalty and Sri Rama, are now Buddhists.
        But the Royal Guru happens to be the Sri Vishnava Thai Brahmins.

                                There is a very strong tradition of 
        Thiruppaavai hymns in Thailand. The hymn, "VaaraNam Aayiram 
        suuzha valam vanthu" is still sung in Tamil. But of course without
        understanding the meaning. There are about 2000 Brahmins in
        Bangkok. 

If anyone has more info about this, I would love to hear it.

Mani

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