Today – Wednesday, 28th November – “Karthikaiyil – Karthigai” also marks the 100th Thirunakshatram of mahavidwan Sri Villur Nadadoor Sribhashya-simhasanam Asukavi Sarvabhauma Srinidhi Swami.
Sri Srinivasaraghava Mahadesika Swami, popularly known by his pen-name Srinidhi Swami was born on 11-12-1913 (Pramathicha year, Karthigai month, Karthigai star). He had his initial Adhdhyayana under his father and from the Veda Pathasala at Vaduvoor. Sri Swami was a born- poet and even at the early age of seven he used to compose Sanskrit poems. He got married at the age of thirteen to Srimathy Vanjulavalli, daughter of Sri Paruthipet Sri Venkatacharya Swami, whose eldest son later became the 43rd pontiff of the Ahobila Mutt. After his marriage Sri Srinidhi Swami learnt portions of Tarka Sastra from his brother- in- law. Thirukkudandai Andavan Swami of Srirangam Periyashramam also had his training in Tarka Sastra from the same teacher.
When Sri Srinidhi Swami was twenty one, his father expired. Being a very obedient son he felt it was his duty to pay off the debts incurred during the last days of his father. He had to sell his house at Vaduvoor and some of the wedding gifts of his wife. Amidst all calamities Sri Swami passed his Sahitya Siromani and never ceased writing poems. Many appreciated his instant-poetry writing R.V. Krishnamacharya Swami, a very learned Pandit popularly known as Abhinava Bhattabanar. Being an Asukavi, Sri Swami used to compose poems at an instant on any occasion. Jocularly did the poems pour out during lunch sessions, when purchasing Rumani mangoes at the sub-registrar’s office, during second world war when everyone was under the threat of the Japanese bombing etc. There are thousands of such poems.
Sri Swami had totally dedicated himself to the Lord’s service and the Lord never had never forsaken him in his dire need. Once when there was nothing in the house to prepare food, surprisingly Sri Swami received Rs.5/- from his cousin through the temple priest named Krishna. At that moment Sri Swami was doing his daily Parayana of the Bhagavad Gita, he was reading the sloka “ananyaha citayantaha”. He fully believed that Lord Krishna would keep up his premise and his belief proved true. On a later date when Sri Swami avowed to celebrate the Upanayanam of his eldest son in a grand manner, he made a poetic surrender to Sri Komalavalli Thayar. He then went to Madurai to see Sri T.C.Srinivasa Iyengar, a renowned lawyer, a Tamil scholar and also his distant cousin. Thayar’s Grace was bestowed on him when his cousin gave him Rs.200/- to perform his son’s Upanayanam.
During the Dasara festival at Mysore in the year 1947, the Maharaja at Mysore had announced a competition in Sanskrit poetry writing. The competition was to present the Ramayana within 250 slokas as a Laghu Kavya. Sri Swami composed his Manju-Ramayanam in 242 slokas and won the prize. By his sheer poetic talent he could easily win anybody that included great mutt-heads also. Sri Injimet Jeer of Sri Ahobila Mutt and Sri Channdrasekarendra Saraswati Swami of Kanchi Kamakoti Mutt had special attachment to Sri Swami.
It was a great desire of Sri Swami’s father to install a vigraha of Sri Nadadoor Ammal, and establish a Vidwat Sadas. Sri Swami thought it was his duty to fulfill his father’s wish. At a later date when Devanarvilagam Azhagiyasingar made a visit to Villoor, he desired to install the icon of Sri Adivan Satakopa Swami at the Sri Krishna temple. There was only the utsava vigraha with him. Sri Jeer requested to give away the Mula vigraha of Nadadoor Ammal that was with the Swami (this Mulavar had come into existence years ago but on second thought had not been installed in the temple) to install as Sri Adivan Satakopa Swami with a tridanda. Sri Swami in turn requested Sri Jeer to help him financially to start a Vidwat Sadas in the name of Ammal. The request fructified only when (the 44th Jeer of Ahobila Mutt)) blessed the Sadas with Rs.1000/- in the year 1961.However Swami started the first Vidwat Sadas in 1955 at Kumbhakonam. In 1956, befittingly Sri Swami received his title, “Asukavi Sarvabhaumar”.
Between 1957 and 1965 Sri Swami lived at Madras when his first two sons got married. He lived at Madurai between 1965 and 1969. In the meanwhile Sri Swami had composed Stotras like Balaji Vimsati, Mangala Stavam, Kavacha Satakam etc. In the year 1973, Sri Swami’s Shashtiyabdha poorthi was performed in a befitting manner at Hyderabad. In order to conduct the Sadas in an excellent manner, Sri Swami had established Sri Varada Desika (Nadadoor Ammal) Trust with himself, Sri Ranganathan and Sri Sampath as trustees. Another trust was founded by him with himself, Srivilliputtur Villur Nadadoor Dr. Srinivasamurthi Smt.Padma, grand daughter of late Thirupullani Nadadoor Srinivasa Iyengar as trustees. In 1982, Sri Swami bought the same house at Vaduvoor where his preceptor stayed and propagated Sri Bhashyam and made it as Nadadoor Ammal Tirumaligai. An Ammal vigraha has been installed here in June 1983.
In recognition of his lifelong service for Sanskrit literature, he was honoured by the President of India Giani Zial Singh in 1987.
Swami’s disciples celebrated his Shatabhishekam (81st Birthday)with all grandeur at Vaduvoor in 1994. Sri Swami attained his heavenly abode in 2001. He is survived by three daughters and four sons. His eldest son Sri S. Seshadri is now handling the day to day affairs of the Tirumaligai and he is now the managing trustee of Nadadoor Ammal Trust founded by Swami. Swami’s second son Balakavi S. Sundararajan IAS(rtd.) has inherited Swami’s calibare in Sanskrit literature, and he went to receive the President’s honour for Sanskrit literature in 2005.
Swami’s service to the cause of Sri Vaishanavism and Sri Bhashya is being carried forward, by his third son Shastrasahiti Vallabha V.S. Karunakaran Swami.
Text Source: nadadoor.org
Thanks: Sri CS Raghavan