Guru parampara series – Madhurakavi Azhwar



The Azhwar who showed us Nammazhwar and revealed that gurubhakthi surpasses Perumal bhakthi was Madhurakaviazhwar.  Madhura kaviazhwar took avatharam at Tirukolur in the Tamil month of Chitra under the Chitra star.  Azhwar’s avatharam took place in Dwaparayugam   .He was Kumudhamsam and  took avatharam in a purvashika Brahmin family. After mastering His shaaka-Saamavedam azhwar set out on a North India divyadesa yatra. When He was in Ayodhya He saw a bright light in the Southern skies.  He followed that light which emanated from a sixteen year old Nammazhwar who was in a trance under a tamarind tree in Tirukurugoor.  Intrigued by this divine sight Madurakavi with folded palms asked If the soul is born out of matter, what will it eat and where will it rest? Nammazhwar who had neither eaten nor spoken all these years replied “It eats that and there it rests” The meaning of this statement is that for an emancipated soul Perumal is food, water and bliss.

Elated Madhurakaviazhwar fell at Nammazhwar’s feet and begged to be accepted as His shisyan. Nammazhwar initiated Madhurakaviazhwar into bhakthi and prapatthi margam and taught all His divyasukthis.

 Madurakaviazhwar’s only composition was Kanninum Siruttambu composing 11 pasurams. These 11 gems have been the point of deep study by so many acharyas.These are in praise of His guru Nammazhwar. He showed us that gurubhakthi surpasses every other kind of bhakthi.  Madurakaviazhwar did not seek SriKrishna directly  for Prappathi but  waited for acharya sambandam.  He showed us that Prappathi is the margam and Bhaghavan has to be approached through a sadacharyan.

 Many centuries later when Nathamunigal after hearing “Aravamudhe “chanting by some wandering minstrels went in search of the author and His works. On being directed to Kurugur  there was no trace of Nammazhwar’s works. But one person knew Kanninum Siruttambu. It was after chanting Kanninum Siruttambu 12,000 times that Nathamunigal had Nammazhwar sakshatkaram and obtainednot only Nammazhwars pasurams but  the entire 4000 divya prabhandhams.  So let us offer our dandavats to Madurakavi (the poet who poured nectarine verses) and learn to recite His Kanninum Siruttambu and develop unflinching devotion to our acharya and follow the simple route to Moksham.

Write-up Courtesy: Smt Vyjayanthi Sundararajan 

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  1. In the Parampara Series, the biography of Madhurakavi Azhwar is really interesting and informative. I shall be obliged if details of other Alwars are available (I think I have missed it), it will be very nice and useful. Thanks.

    • Respected swamin, It is encouraging to receive your feedback.The first Azhwars,Tirumazhisai azhwar, Nammazhwar and Madhurakavi have been published in the children’s section. The rest will follow. Adiyen Vyjayanthi


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