Friday, April 27, 2012

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 165 (Vol # 5) Dated 27 Apr 2012

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 165 (Vol # 5) Dated 27 Apr 2012

(These e-mails are translations of talks given by PeriyavaaL of Kanchi Kaamakoti Peetam, over a period of some 60 years while he was the pontiff in the earlier part of the last century. These have been published by Vanadi Padippagam, Chennai, in seven volumes of a thousand pages each as Deivathin Kural. Today we are going ahead from the page No 1026 of Vol 5 of the Tamil original. The readers may note that herein ‘man/he’ includes ‘woman/she’ too mostly. These e-mails are all available at updated constantly)

1110. It was but natural for SarasavaaNi to feel bad that her husband was about to leave Gruhastam and take up Sannyaasa! As the wife is an inalienable part of the twosome that makes the couple of husband and wife, she interposed a new condition that AachaaryaaL has to defeat her also and then only can be declared the winner. This is as we understand at the human level. At another level, AachaaryaaL had to prove his Omniscience by defeating the Saraswathi Devi herself, the Goddess of Learning! Like Viswamitra had a desire to be called a Brhma Rishi by Vasishta, the Avatara of Saraswathi as SarasavaaNi came to being for the very purpose of declaring our AachaaryaaL as the Sarvagna, the Omniscient! She had a great reputation as a storehouse of all knowledge and was defeated by our AachaaryaaL! There is another version of the story in which she is said to have revealed her being as the Saraswathi Devi and declared our AachaaryaaL’s Omniscience at the time of his ascending the ‘Sarvagna Peetam’, that is the Seat of Omniscience!

1111. How can a wife ever say that her husband has lost in a competition? Here, how the Goddess of Learning managed the situation is rather touching. Instead of directly saying that AachaaryaaL has won or that she has lost; she said indirectly, “OK. The debate is over. Both of you kindly come forward for ‘Biksha’. ‘Biksha’ is the formal word for the food being served for a Sanyasi! For others it is a lunch or supper or dinner. For a beggar it is ‘alms’ and for a Sanyasi, it is the ‘Biksha’! That means indirectly, Mandana Mishra also has to take Sannyaasa from our AachaaryaaL, and then have Biksha, isn’t it? That is how she revealed the end of the debate in a subtle manner!

1112. Any lady who loves her husband is likely to feel bad when the husband is about to give up married life and take up Sannyaasa! That too, her husband was a great match for her intelligence and knowledge. He used to be ever involved in conducting great Yaagas in which she used to participate as the Yagna Patni, playing her part to perfection! It was difficult for her to sacrifice his company. But the interest of truth had to be served and self-interest had to be sacrificed! Though it was the garland of flowers that decided the issue, it was her mind and heart super imposed on those garlands. Otherwise can you find any garland of flowers that lasts for 21 days without wilting anywhere? (Rest assured that there were no plastics yet in use those days!) She also participated in the debate and lost to our AachaaryaaL, so that his worth and value may be known to all. That was the main aim. Though many of the Devas had come down on earth as Avataras at that time, she was well known far and wide as ‘Ubhaya Bharathi’. When a certificate of merit is issued to somebody, the authority issuing the certificate should have a standing and reputation in people’s minds, isn’t it? Her words had that distinction and authority!

1113. Normally, if somebody comes forward to give Sanyaasa to one’s husband the wife will chase him away, isn’t it? Here SarasavaaNi did Namaskar with due respect and offered food for them as ‘Biksha’. SarasavaaNi there by gains a very important place for herself amongst the respectable women of India. Mandana Mishra took Sanyaasa Deeksha from our AachaaryaaL and became one of his disciples. From then onwards he came to be known as ‘Sureshwara’. “What work have I got here when my husband is not with me”, said Saraswathi Devi, so far known as SarasavaaNi and was getting ready to return to Brhma Loka! But, our AachaaryaaL differed with her saying, “Your presence is always required on this earth. So forever you should continue to give people good sense”. So he tied her up with the Vana Durga Mantra! Of course Gods are forever interested and involved in the upliftment of people’s minds and can never ignore the world to its own doom! But, these scenes are like so many acts in the drama on the stage to make the power of mantras known to the world. So also every twist and turn in the drama of an Avatara’s life is to be seen with that background information.

1114. Saraswathi said, “OK. It is all right! But do not install me just here in this place itself. You people keep visiting various places all over India and I shall keep following your footsteps, on one condition that you are not to look back! If and wherever you happen to look back, I shall get established there itself forever. There you may build a temple for my permanent stay on earth as the ‘Sarada Peetam’”. That was another scene in the ongoing drama! AachaaryaaL started out with Sureshwara. Saraswathi Devi followed them, the ‘Jill Jill’ sound of her anklets announcing the fact of her following them. AachaaryaaL continued without looking back.

1115. Speciality of Sringeri! For long they kept traversing till one day they came down South to Sringeri on the banks of the Tungabhadra River. There they came across the spectacle of a snake acting as an umbrella giving shade from the hot sun, for a frog just about to deliver her off springs! Normally for a snake, a frog is like a cherished dish! But may be the special quality of that place, caused their natural enmity and attraction of the food chain; to be forgotten! Our AachaaryaaL thought that, it would be a suitable place for the establishment of Sarada Peetam and construction of a temple for Saraswathi Devi. The ‘Jill Jill’ sound stopped suddenly and AachaaryaaL turned back to see as to why the sound had stopped! What had happened was that, she had also slowed down and her feet were getting imbedded in the sandy terrain of the river bank that, the sound of the anklets had subsided!

1114. Since he looked back, she had stood her ground, literally! Since he looked back, she stood then and there rooted to the ground! Our AachaaryaaL felt happy that his thought and her condition for a temple coincided so precisely! That was the spot where the Sarada Peetam was established and a temple for Saraswathi Devi came into being. As that place was very calm and salubrious, for long our AachaaryaaL stayed there doing Pooja to the Goddess. Having written all his books in first block of 16 years of his life, in the second block of 16 years he went around the whole country from the ‘Setu to Himalayas’, three times! Within that short period, the maximum that he stayed in one place was in Sringeri, as revealed by the Sankara Vijayam books.

1115. Other Matams are established as intended by our AachaaryaaL in strategically important places, religion wise. There are four ends or corners of the sub-continent of India known as ‘Chaar Dhaam’. As the aim was to re-establish the Sanaatana Dharma all over India, these four places had to be such extremities as to cover the country equally geographically. So these places were Badrinaath (including Jyotirmath now known as Joshimath) in the North, Dwaarakanaath in the West, Jagannaath (Puri) in the East and Ramnaath or Rameswaram in the South. He did establish the Matams in all these places except Rameswaram as, the Vidya Devata herself caused the Sarada Peetam to be established in Sringeri. Then Kanchipuram as the middle point of the whole world, as the Naval is for the whole body, was the last place where a Matam was established. Sringeri anyhow is as per the wish of Sarada AmbaaL herself!

1116. Uniqueness and Greatness of Sureshwara. As Mandana Mishra had been a major force in the Meemaamsai religion, the fact of his becoming a disciple of our AachaaryaaL gave a lot of fillip to revival of the Vedic Religion of Sanaatana Dharma. But human nature being what it is, it is reported that our AachaaryaaL’s other disciples themselves looked at him with some suspicion, as reported in the Sankara Vijayam books. He is said to have started writing the Vaartikam (explanatory notes) for the Bhashyam for Brhma Sutram that our AachaaryaaL had written. (Actually Brhma Sutram has a name as ‘Saareeraka Meemaamsa’ and so the Bhashyam written for it by our AachaaryaaL was known also as, ‘Saareeraka Bhashyam’.) At that time the other disciples of AachaaryaaL had some reservations. “Though he has joined our AachaaryaaL as a disciple because he has lost in debate, will he have real and sincere belief in the Adwaita Philosophy? We have taken up Sannyaasa directly bypassing the Gruhasta Aashrama. But he is one who has been in Gruhastam for long. So can we expect him to have absorbed the principles and ideas of Adwaita Vedaanta?” So, the question in their minds was, if the purpose of AachaaryaaL’s concepts will be served by Sureshwara’s writing the Vaartikam? They seem to have expressed their reservations to AachaaryaaL. He is said to have kept his views to himself. The matter also reached Sureshwara’s ears and he refrained from writing that Vaartikam.

1117. One day he came to our AachaaryaaL and said, “For long I have been deliberating on giving you some Guru DakshiNa. You do not even touch money and I have also renounced all possessions. So I was wondering as to what could be a suitable Guru DakshiNa!” Then with hesitation and reluctance he submitted a palm leaf manuscript in his Guru’s feet and did Namaskar. The name of that manuscript was ‘Naishkarmya Siddhi’, in which it had been brought out that, the highest Siddhi is to become ‘Kruta Krutya:’ whose duties have all been done and over. That is Moksham and the end of Vedaanta. This was what our AachaaryaaL would have wanted him to do; for the other disciples to have correctly understood Sureshwara’s level of understanding and comprehension!

(To be continued.)




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