Today, August 4th, 2013; Vijaya Varusha Aadi Thiruvadirai, HH 46th Srimath Azhagiyasingar Srivan Sathakopa Sri Ranganatha Yathindra Maha Desikan is on the 14th day of Chaturmasya vratham at Srirangam Dasavatharan Sannidhi.
Thiruvadirai is a very significant constellation for all Srivaishnavas. It was on a Chitra Thiruvadirai day that Ananthan took avatharam as Swami Ramanuja in the sacred town of SriPerumpudur. In Srirangam Sri Ranganatha temple, one can have darshan of His Swayam Thirumeni along with His Utsava murthi, His Aaradhya Perumal, Varadaraja and His Manasika guru Sri Alavandhar. Thirumanjanam is done to the utsava murthi in the morning on Thiruvadirai and there is kannadiarai sevai in the evening.
At Dasavathara Sannidhi, Swami Ramanuja vigraham is in Sri Kaliyan’s Sannidhi. Inside the swarna mandapam, which houses Malolan Dolai Kannan and several other deities also has Bhashyakarar, Vedantha Desikan, Adhivan Sathakopa MahaDesikan and the archa thirumenis of several Srimath Azhagiyasingars. Today, being Thiruvadirai, the prasadam for Abhigamanam was Ven Pongal and Kesari. Several shishyas had samashryanam and Bharanyasam today.
Since our Sampradhya is about Prapathi, it would be appropriate to give a brief about this Margam. We take millions and trillions of births and deaths. Good deeds or punyas get us swargam and bad deeds Narakam. But both put us back to earth once our papa or punya is over. Punyas are like a handcuff of gold and papas are like a handcuff of iron. Inorder to put an end to this cycle of births and deaths, one has to do Bhakthi or Saranagathi and attain Vaikuntaloka. Bhakthi margam is not easy. Bhakthi has to be continuous and antima smrithi is necessary and inspite of all this we may not reach our destination at the end of this birth. But there is no need to despair – the Saranagathi margam is open to all irrespective of caste, creed, sex and incapabilities. All one needs to do is seek their Acharyas and request for Prapatthi. A nagging doubt is “Are we qualified?” The qualification for prapatthi is the realisation that we have no qualification and are totally helpless but yet want an end to this chain.
There are three main kinds of Prapatthi – Ukthi Nishtai, Acharya Nishtai and Bhaghavatha Nishtai. In the Ahobila Mutt Sampradhayam, Ukthi Nishtai is followed. Acharya Nishtai is followed when the seeker is too young to repeat the mantras or too sick to even reach the Acharyan. Usually, those seeking Bharanyasam are taken infront of Sri Malolan and Srimath Azhagasingar initiates the process. The curtain is drawn and Acharyan introduces us to Piratti and Perumal. He explains to us that all along we have deluded ourselves that our atma is ours. It is actually His and we have to surrender it. Acharyan asks us to repeat the mantras after Him. Sri is addressed and the divine mother recommends us to Him. Perumal refuses to even to look at us because we have so many wrongs but Piratti pleads our case with Him, reminds Him about the promises He made in Ramavathara and Krishnavathara and makes His Kataksham fall on us. Perumal’s grace falls on us and moksham is assured. Acharyas ask us to seek moksham at the end of our life.
The life after Prappathi is one of fearlessness. One needs to do Anukulyasya Sankalpam – try to do what the sastras say to the best of one’s capacity; Pratikulyasya Varjanam – not to do what Perumal dislikes; have Mahavishvasam that is complete faith that we will reach SriVaikuntam; Goptritva Varnam – resort to Him alone as the saviour and Karpanyam – acceptance of our helplessness. We have to live like pathivrathas of Sriman Narayana and approach only Him in times of need. Anya devatha worship and Bhaghavatha apacharam should be carefully avoided.
HH 45th Srimath Azhagiyasingar once talked about two dwarfs – one talked about by Kalidasa and the other by Swami Desikan. They were both in the midst of a mango orchard full of luscious mangoes. Kalidasa’s dwarf tried to jump and reach the fruits and failed but Swami Desikan’s dwarf asked a tall person to pluck the mangoes and enjoyed them. So an Acharya with His endless qualifications helps us reach the end.
The following are some of the photographs taken at Dasavathara Sannadhi earlier today…
Courtesy: Vyjayanthi and Sundararajan