On, 8 April 2015, Jaya Varusha Panguni Anusham ;Sri Venatrankarai Andavan Swami Thirunakshatra Utsavam was celebrated in grand manner at Sri Poundarikapuram Srimath Andavan Ashramam , Srirangam. As part of the utsavam on 7th April 2015, In the evening around 3.00 p.m Thirumanjanam was perfomed at Sri Vennatrankarai Swami Brindavanam . Godha Goshti recited Padhuka Sahasaram and Purushas took part in Veda , Prabandha parayanam . On 8th April, Acharya thiruveedi purrapadu from East Uthira Street Swami Desikan Sannadhi to Poundarikapuram Ashramam. There grand Satrumurai followed by Theertham and Satari at Ashramam Premises. . Lot of Sishyas and Abhimanies took part in the swami Thirunakshatra Utsavam and had blessings of Acharya.
Small Writeup About Sri Vennatrankarai Andavan By Sri Madhavakkannan Swami
(Followed by Photos taken during Acharya Thirumanjanam and Thiruveedhi Purappadu)
Panguni anusham is the star of the divine Acharya – SRIMAD ANDAVAN ( SRI VENNATRANKARAI ANDAVAN ) predecessor to Prakritham Srimad Paravakkottai Andavan Swami whose TN (88th) is being celebrated on April 10th at Srirangam.
Swami Sri Vennatrankarai Andavan lived in our midst on this earth and made it holier from 19-3-1882 to 9-4-1980 (from Sri Anbil Ramaswamy Swami’s write up]
Sri Velaamur Varada Krishnamachariar Swami belonged to Kalyana Puram near Tiruvaiyaaru. He married one Alarmel Mangai. Both the families were steeped in Vedic tradition. The family enjoyed the patronage of Serfoji Raja of Thanjavur on account of their deep dedication to Vedic tradition.
They lived in a house adjacent to Singaperumal Koil at Vennatran Karai whose praise has been sung by Tirumangai Alwar. The couple was blessed with a son in the cyclic year ?Kara? in the month of Panguni when the star Anuradha was in the ascendant.19th March 1882. At his birth, he was named Seshadri. He received Pancha Samskaram from his father as well as the first lessons in Sama Veda from his father.
He was sent to Tiruvaiyaru Vembu Sastrigal and (*Nagaraja Sastrigal), noted Sanskrit Pandits to specialize in Sama Veda, Kavya, and Nataka. Later, he studied and became proficient both in Yajur Veda and Divya Prabhandam. Qualified to perform yagnas, he was an authority in Dharma Sastras and in the practical application of six Sutras in daily life. He excelled in Goshti Parayana as he was endowed with a rich mellifluous voice. At the Sama Veda examination conducted by Pudukkottai Samasthanam, he was declared to have passed in second class owing to the partiality of the examiner but when the Swami refused to accept the award contending the verdict, the Raja ordered a re-examination and found him to have passed in Ist class, by which he won the acclaim of the Raja and other Sanskrit pundits. He married Janaki, then only 7. (the daughter of Kodavasal Ramabadrachariar
and Ponnu kamalammmal) at the age of 11. Sri Velaamur Srinivasachariar was greatly devoted to Sri Desika He was chiefly instrumental in enabling Velliyanur Srimad Andavan to celebrate Sri Desika Annual festival at Neelamegha Perumal Koil. He gave to the temple a palanquin, a number of Vahanas and several jewels. These festivals were conducted by him with great devotion out of the family funds.
Even after becoming an Acharya, he continued to evince keen interest in the proper conduct of these festivals. Today, Srimad Andavan’s relations in Purvasramam still continue to celebrate Swami Desika Utsava with unabated interest and devotion. (Once, when participating in a Yaga, the Ritvik in charge of Atharvyu was indisposed and could not attend. Within one night, our Swami learned the entire Atharvyu mantras and acted in the place of the absentee Ritvik and completed the Yaga successfully. Such was his capacity to absorb and retain with razor sharp memory and perform the role with consummate skill.) Some hostile persons removed the idol of Swami Desika from the small shrine in Hara Saapa Vimochana Perumal Koil at Tiruk Kandiyur. The father of Srimad Srinivasa Maha Desikan took the lead in making a new idol and installed it in the empty shrine. Srimad Andavan in his Purvasrama used to lead the Adhyapaka Goshti during the festival days.Srimad Srinivasa Maha Desikan in his Purvasrama was quite well known for his philanthropy. He has helped pious Vaishnavas in times of dire need.
Although born in a wealthy family, Sri Srinivasachariar’s mind and heart turned to renunciation and to severing Worldly attachments. He had already sought the feet of Gnana Vairaghya Anushtana Sampanna Poundarika Puram Andavan and received from his Grantha Kalakshepam, Bhara Samarpanam, Prapatti Prayoga Upadesam, Presha Mantra Upadesam and Sannyaasa Prayogam. Considering his Poorvasrama financial resources as trash, he came to Poundarika Puram Andavan Asramam as his final retreat.
After becoming the Acharya, he devoted his full attention to the administration of the Asramam and to the celebration, in a grand manner the Tirunakshatra of the past Srimad Andavans. (He helped Chaturveda Satakratu Navalpakkam Narasimha Tatachariar, Kozhiyalam Sri Ranga Ramanuja Maha Desikan and several others and earned their gratitude and blessings) . The daily Aradhanas were performed with great piety and devotion. The SaaRRumuRai congregation was indeed an inspiring sight to the devout. On such occasions, Srimad Andavan himself led the Goshti giving it both grace and solemnity. He would recite all by himself the nighamana Adhikara of Sri Rahasya Traya Sara of Sri Vedanta Desika. His discourses on such occasions were listened to with rapt attention.
It is relevant to mention that Sri Vinnatrangarai Swami was accepted as same teacher by Sri Thenbarai Andavan (of Peria asramam), since the latter had a feeling of regret that he had not mastered his own Sakha, same veda! Very interestingly, in the Sannyasa life too, Sri Vinnatrangarai Andavan exhibited great concern for the health (that was rapidly declining) of Sri Thenbarai Andavan (1960’s). Everyday he would walk to and fro. What it means is that he should take bath every time on return! Once indeed, a moving event occurred, Sri Vinnatrangarai Andavan walks to Peria Asramam, meets Sri Kannan Swami on the way, learnt that the latter was going to Madras on some urgent work since the Thenbarai Andavan’s health would sustain life for some three days, but Sri Vinnatrangarai Andavan warns the latter that it was not so, takes him back to the Asramam and almost influences him to take to the saffron order. Yes, it was urgently necessary. Readers would realize the risk, the confusion, etc. That often results on the successor not taking over immediately without a gap in time.
Indeed on later occasions, Sri Vinnatrangarai Andavan used to congratulate Sri Thirukkudanthai Andavan on the growth, expansion, increasing affluence, etc. of his Asramam, with a legitimate satisfaction that He himself had worked for it by forcing Sri Kannan Swami to accept Sannyasa at the right moment.
Srimad Andavan seemed to have a premonition of his impending death. He called to his side the then Srikaryam, Paravakkottai Sri Rajagopalachariar Swami( who had come to the Asramam to assist him in the conduct of Tirunakshatra celebrations) and told him in confidence that since his earthly life would not go beyond the next Sravanam day which fell on 5th April 1980, he should be interred by the side of his Acharya in the Brindavanam on the bank of Vada Kaveri. Strangely enough, Srimad Andavan entered his Jyoti at 2 pm on 9th April 1980,(* which was Siddharti Panguni 27th, a Krishna Paksha Navami Tithi day) so close to the last day which Srimad Andavan had himself fixed.
(IT WAS THIS SWAMI WHO INITIATED INTO SANNYASA ASRAMAM THE MAHAN CELEBRATED AS,INJIMETTU AZHAGIYASINGHAR)
The Iyal Goshti of Venntran Karai Andavan was a magnificent sight, the like of which was never seen or heard of before. The grand procession led by the Ahobila Mutt elephant, with the idol of Sri Bhashyakaara at the head, passed through the streets of Srirangam and impressed all by their colourful variety- the Poorvaasrama son of Acharya carrying the worn garlands of several Divya Desas, seven or eight divisions of Veda Parayana Goshtis, their Vedic chant piercing the sky above all the surging sea of Srivaishnavas, devotees and disciples.
The procession stood at the Dasavataaran Sannidhi and after Mangalaasaasana there reached the Asramam. Ubhaya Vedaanta Vidwan Madhurantakam Sri Veera Ragahavachariar Swami paid glowing tributes to Srimad Andavan’s many sided virtues in verse and prose. Another glorious chapter in the history of Sri Poundarika Puram Asramam came to a close.
His Tanian reads as follows:
Naryanaakhya Yathiraja Paadaabja Bringa
Sri Vaasa Yogi Gurunaa Arpitha Bharam Eese/
Bhakthyaaddhi Poorna Varadaarya Kripaatha Sinham
Sri Srinivasa Munivaram Aham Prapadhye //
I take refuge at the holy feet of Srinivasa Maha Desikan who was like a honey bee at the lotus feet of the yathi- srEshtar , Sri NaarAyaNa MahA Desikan and performed his prapatthi at the sacred feet of Poundarikapuram SrinivAsa MahA Desikan after receiving his pancha samskAram rites from Sri VaradAchArya Swami known for his Bhakthi-Jn~Ana-VairAghyam .
The following are some of the photos taken during the occasion…