Monday, August 24, 2009
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Enables skipping dangerous spots.
Bairagi Mutt is over 400 years old and is in Sowcarpet in Chennai. There are many sannidhis like for Sri Rama, Sri Varadaraja, Sri Ranganatha, Sri Puri Jagannatha, etc. Tiruadipooram is being celebrated enthusiastically. All the Five Acharyas have sannidhis here. Sri Andal is praised as 'perumboothur mamunikku pinnanaal vazhiye [பெரும்பூதூர் மாமுனிக்கு பின்னானாள் வாழியே]' - meaning 'long live She, Who became younger to Swami Ramanuja'. Though, Sri Andal appeared Thousands of years before Swami Ramanuja, because like an elder brother he fulfilled the wish of Sri Andal. Tarana means helps in crossing samsaram. The Lord takes us to Vaikuntam. In SVS 309 [Divine name 289 Jagatassetu:], it was told that the Lord acts as a Grand bridge for us to cross this samsara sagaram! We can not approach the Lord directly but through an Acharya or Purushakara. That is the simple and correct way! Swami Ramanuja considered Tiruppavai as his breath!
Monday, July 20, 2009
Today's [20th July 2009] lecture is from Bairagi Mutt, in Chennai near Madras Central Railway station. We had seen this temple earlier [SVS 263 to SVS 266]. Here Sri Andal's festival is being celebrated. Ashoka vanam destroyed the sorrows of Sri Sita and Sri Rama. It is said that after Hanuman's visit its name got well established. When Sri Bhudevi asked the Lord as to what is the easy way to get redeemed as He redeemed Her, when abducted by Hiranyaksha. He said that if one chants His Divine name and meditates, when one's health was proper and all faculties of the body were functioning properly, then He is rescued even when in a death bed, one is lying like a log of wood. Sri Bhudevi, to spread this message descended on this earth as Sri Andal! This way we can wipe out all our sufferings! Tiru Adippooram is celebrated on 25th July 2009.
Friday, July 17, 2009
In the last Q&A session, a question was raised regarding dress code to attend temples. Some are still raising doubts. It is difficult to satisfy all. Like other holy books of other religions, Vedas are the main reference for us, as told by Sri Krishna. In this also Vedas or Shastras have to be followed. It is said that Shastras are more considerate than Thousand mothers.
Q: What is Ekadasi and how it has to be followed?
A: Ekadasi is the Eleventh phase of the Moon, after Amavasya [New Moon] or Pournami [Full Moon]. We have to observe upavasa [fasting] on that day. In case full starvation is not possible, we have to avoid full rice that day. That is rice can be broken and cooked. Or, other tiffin items or fruits can be consumed.
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Destroys the Cities of Asuras.
Today's lecture is from Panchavati, near Nasik.
Panchavati means Five banyan trees. There is a museum depicting incidents in Ramayana. Purandara means burning down 'puri' or towns. At this place Lord Sri Rama, without any assistance, destroyed 14,000 Rakshasas. Swami Desika says it was like a great elephant effortlessly destroying lotus pond! The Lord destroyed Tripura.
skandah skanda-dharO dhuryO varadO vAyuvAhanah | vAsudevO brhadbhAnur - Adidevah purandarah || (36)
Wednesday, July 15, 2009
As the Creator of all Universe, happy over creation.
We are in Nasik today also. It is requested that sacred rivers of our country should be kept clean and pure! Here, Kapila river and Godavari join, but presents a very ugly picture, because of disuse and abuse! Here there is Sri Kala [black] Rama temple and nearby Ramakund and Sitakund. This temple is 1000 years old and the idols were recovered from Godavari.
Here Lord Sri Rama is keeping His right hand on His chest. It looks as though the Lord is telling Sri Sita, that He would rather sacrifice Sri Sita and Lakshmana, but would never let down the promise made to sages to protect them! He is Adideva, the Originator for all. He was praised by all characters in Ramayana!
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
Possesses great luminescence, always.
We are at Nasik. Sri Rama along with Sri Sita and Lakshmana lived here for long time and increased its sanctity. Godavari had a blemish of not informing Sri Rama, Ravana abducting Sri Sita, in spite of Her request and Sri Rama's prayer. This was removed when Godavari had Sri Goda's name! Nasika means nose in Sanskrit. When Soorpanaka, tried to misbehave with Sri Rama and Sri Sita, Lakshmana cut off her nose and ears and so this place is called Nasik. As usual, here also the river is not kept clean, making it unfit for bathing! Here there are Five banyan trees and so it is Panchavati!
Monday, July 13, 2009
Sustains all, playfully.
We are in Nasik, in Maharashtra. River Godavari flows here. Ganga is famous because it originated fro the Divine feet of the Lord. But Godavari has its glory because it has Sri Andal, Goda's, name, says Swami Vedanta Desika!
From now on next 12 Divine names, until Divine name 344, are in petal 17 of Bhagavad Guna Darpanam, by Swami Parashara Bhatta, and explain Vasudeva! Vasudeva means the Lord resides in all, always and supports them without any efforts! This Divine name refers to His Omni Presence. Vasudevan could also mean Son of Vasudeva [वसुदेव]. Those who realize He is Vasudeva, are relieved of the bonds in this world. We should do every activity dedicating to Sri Vasudeva. This is called satvika tyagam. Then both papa and punya would not stick to us! In Bhagavad Gita the Lord tells Arjuna, that it is rare for people to realize He is Sri Vasudeva!
Friday, July 10, 2009
Q: Are there dress restrictions in attending temple?
A: Just like we have dress code for attending offices, workshop or schools, we should follow prescribed dress while entering temples. We seem not to ask question when dress codes are prescribed for offices, dinner, etc. Then, are not we to follow certain ethics in going to temples?
Thursday, July 9, 2009
Administers air, the life support for the World.
Today's [9th July 2009] lecture is with description of Vasantotsavam of Sri Namperumal in Srirangam. Just like we go to hill resorts to avoid summer heat, the Lord also needs cool place to refresh! We have to regard the Lord in temples as real Persons and not as mere idols! A well designed garden is there between Chakkarattazhvar sannidhi and Sri Thayar sannidhi. The central mantapam is surrounded by water and artificial springs. With fragrance of flowers and greenery all around, the Lord and the devotees enjoy the ambiance! Vayu vahana means controller of air or breath. It is under His orders that the Nature behaves as we see. Our breath as also the life supporting air for the Universe, are at the command of the Lord. Hanuman served as messenger between Sri Rama and Sri Sita, and saved their lives! So here Hanuman is described as Pranatmaja or Vayu Putra!
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
331. OM VARADAYA NAMA: ॐ वरदाय नम:
Grants power to gods in charge of various activities in managing the World.
We will now enjoy the beauty of the Lord in Srirangam. In Srirangam, almost all through the year, festivals are celebrated. In those, we will describe Poocchatti Utsavam. Beauty of Sri Namperumal and His festivals are beyond words. This festival is unique for Sri Namperumal. He arrives at the open space in front of Sri Kotanda Rama sannidhi. He is adorned with a garment made of flowers only. Though Varada is the name of Lord of Kanchi, the Lord at every temple is Varada. Varada means granting varams [boons]. He grants many. If we pray, we might pray only for limited benefits; but if He grants on His Own, He will grant unlimited boons. One devotee says that he did not want anything, but if the Lord decided to grant, then He should grant Himself! Swami Vedanta Desika in his Yadavabhyudayam, says that when Sri Krishna was born, just as we celebrate our children's birth day, demi gods and village gods granted boons to their devotees, to celebrate the Lord's avatar!
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
Supports the great burden of Universe.
Today's [7/7/2009] lecture is also from Injimedu. This agraharam was established by Shashta Parankusa Jeer, 6th Jeer of Sri Ahobila Mutt. Everyone is requested to visit at least once their native village and temple. The 42nd Jeer was very famous for his very noble qualities like calm and patience.
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His taniyan is:
SrI RangEsa yathIndhunA karuNayAasou syAdhithi prEkshitham khyAtha: SrINarasimhakArijamunID paadhAmbhujEndhindhiram dhAnthi KshAnthi dayAdhibhi: ubha guNai: bhAntham bhudhAgrEsaram Srimadh RangasaDAri yOgi nrupathim srEyOnidhim samsrayE
nd pattam SrImath azhagiyasingars
In SVS 122, the Divine name bhabru  also indicated He supports World. Bheeshma reiterates it here again and Swami Parashara Bhatta mentions it in Sri Koorma Avatara. He is adhara koormam [आधार कूर्मं ஆதார கூர்மம்].
Monday, July 6, 2009
As told in Gita [that the Lord is Skanda among Commanders], He sustains Skanda, Devas' commander.
In Kali Yug, though the followers of Sri Vishnu would dwindle, many great Acharyas would be born on the banks of sacred rivers in South India - says Srimad Bhagavatam. We are touring agraharams in Palaru and surroundings. In Tiruvannamalai District is Injimedu [இஞ்சிமேடு], mutilated name of Yagna medu [யக்ஞமேடு]. From this place the very famous 42nd Jeer of Sri Ahobila Mutt hailed. Sri Yagna Rama here is very famous, as also Anjaneya.
The Lord provides power for Skanda [or Kandan கந்தன் in Tamil].
Friday, July 3, 2009
Q & A :
Q: How are we to bathe in sacred waters? What benefits are obtained by bathing in sacred waters?
A: Our land is very sacred, because of presence of many sacred waters, like rivers like Ganga, Yamuna, Saraswati, Kaveri, Krishna, etc; Ponds or pushkarinis in temples and Kshetrams, like Ananta saras, Swami Pushkarini, etc. Pilgrimage means visiting Kshetrams and bathing in such sacred waters. We have to know these waters from our elders or Acharyas. One should dip fully and bathe in such sacred waters [Sri Andal says kudaindu neeradi குடைந்து நீராடி]. We have to pray first and then enter the water. We should not bathe in forbidden times [this has to be verified from elders]. Before bathing sankalpam is necessary.
Thursday, July 2, 2009
Destroys Asuras and Rakshasas.
Ilankadu is a beautiful village at about 5 Miles from Vandavasi [Wandiwash]. Sri Bhu Nila sametha Sri Vaikuntavasa Perumal graces. The Seventh Jeer of Sri Ahobila Mutt, hailed from this place. King Raja Raja Chola's statue is here. He eliminates army of Asuras! Devas mean noble ones, who pray only the Lord for their protection. When Asuras grabbed Amrut kalash, the Lord took Sri Mohini Avatar and mesmerized all Asuras with 'Her' captivating appearance. Then 'She' distributed Amrut to Devas alone. With rejuvenated strength Devas could easily defeat Asuras.
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
Without any external support, sustaining on His own eminence.
We are now in Ilankadu [இளங்காடு], another agraharam in Thondai Mandalam. Earlier we saw Mukkur, where Sri Rama was in the temple and this Sri Rama idol was installed in Ahobilam. We can recall that we worshiped Sri Rama in Lower Ahobilam. In Ilankadu, the Lord is Sri Vaikuntavasa Perumal [ஸ்ரீ வைகுண்ட வாச பெருமாள்]. The Lord once told Narada that He was not in Vaikuntam nor amidst Sun; but in the hearts of devotees, who faithfully followed shastras! The Lord is here for the past 3000 years. There are many stone inscriptions seen here. It is also told that when Tirumazhisai Alwar was a Shaiva devotee, he had come to this place to worship lord Shiva! Pratishta means well supported or established. In Sri Koorma Avatar, He supported Mnadira mountain. Then, who Supported Him? None, other than His own glory! While the Lord supports all, He supports Himself by His sankalpam and eminence.
achyuthah praTHithah prANah prANadO vAsavAnujah | apAmnidhir-adhiSHTAnam-apramaththah prathiSHTithah || (35)
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
Always enthusiastic to protect devotees.
Sri Mukkur Azhagiyasingar was born in Avani Hastham, the day when 'Ramanuja Daya patram' taniyan was born! He is the only Azhagiyasingar with the sanyasi name Vedanta Desika, in great reverence to Swami Vedanta Desika!
Due to his great bhakti in Kanchi Sri Varadaraja, he established Sri Varadaraja temple in his village Mukkur. There is a temple for Anjaneya, which is very famous and it is believed that all our prayers are answered by Hanuman here! In Sanskrit, 'pramadam [प्रमादम]' means inattentive or carelessness. This is different from Tamil pramadam [பிரமாதம்], which means excellent! The Lord is without pramadam towards His devotees! He is very attentive and interested in protecting His devotees. Sri Andal says 'ootramudayaai [ஊற்றமுடையாய்]' meaning deeply interested and highly attentive! It is this interest, which made Him to go to forests or as messenger! By chanting Srimate Srivan Satakopa Sri Vedanta Desika Yateendra Maha desikaya nama:, all our problems will vanish and we will be more interested in our duties.
Monday, June 29, 2009
Supported Mandira mountain from below, and made it stable for churning.
We are in Mukkur village, situated in between Thyyar and Kanchipuram.
SRIMATE SRIVAN SATAKOPA SRI VEDANTA DESIKA YATINDRA MAHA DESIKAYA NAMA:
ஸ்ரீ வண் சடகோப ஸ்ரீ வேதாந்ததேசிக யதீந்த்ர மஹா தேசிகாய நம:
We realize the sanctity of a place by the number of great Acharyas and Bhaktas have visited it. That way Mukkur gets its glory from the great Acharya born in it! The 44th Jeer of Sri Ahobila mutt was born here. He was a great philanthropist. He was born some 110 years back. He was the head of the Mutt for about 37 years. A satsanga has been formed by like minded persons to celebrate the golden jubilee of Sri Varadaraja Swami temple established in Mukkur by the great Acharya. Adhishtanam means supporter.
Friday, June 26, 2009
We are in Vazhtthur. King Ambarisha was wronged by Durvasa, and the Lord protected Ambarisha with His Sudarsana chakra. When Sudarsana chased Durvasa, he had to fall at the Divine feet of the Lord. At that time the Lord said that though Durvasa did no wrong to the Lord, he tried to tease His Bhakta Ambareesha. The Lord said further that as far as His devotees were concerned, He was never independent and so Durvasa had to fall at Ambareesha's feet and seek pardon. He supported the mountain and saved it from sinking, while churning. Not only that, while it is talked that Devas and Asuras churned, they had no stamina and the Lord pulled from both sides, and churned the ocean! Their minds were in the cheap Amrut, and so they never enjoyed the beauty of the Lord churning!
Q: Can anyone put off a burning lamp?
A: While lamps can be lit by anyone, male or female, young or old, lamps can be put off only by ladies. Also, while, before lighting, we can handle the wick with our fingers, once the wick starts burning, we should never deploy our fingers to control the flame; we should use a small stick or other such implements. We should never do anything under a lamp's shade. To put off lamps, one should not blow or fan. Ladies can put off by cutting off the burning portion or by adding milk or curd.
Thursday, June 25, 2009
When ocean was churned, supported it.
Today's [25th June 2009] lecture is also from Vazhutthur. When ocean was churned by rotating Mandira mountain, the Lord supported it from below by taking Sri Koorma Avatar. But when the mountain was rotated, it started tilting; and so, the Lord held it vertically.
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
To bless Indra with Amrut, born after Indra.
Today's [24th June 2009] lecture is from Vazhutthur near Neduntheru. It appears once when the area was flooded, Sri Ambarisha Varada of Aduthurai temple [one of the 108 Divya desams] was brought here to save from flood. That is why the Lord in Vazhutthur is also Sri Ambarisha Varada! Just as Ambarisha is connected with sage Durvasa, Sri Koorma Avatar is also connected with Durvasa. In Munitraya sampradhayam, the very famous Swami Vazhutthur Andavan, hailed from this place. Vasava means Indra and anuja is younger brother. But in this way Swami Parasara Bhatta has not interpreted the meaning; the Lord took avatar for the sake of Indra, after Indra prayed for His help, like lifting the great Mandira mountain, or supporting the mountain from submerging, etc. Swami Vedanta Desika in his Dasavatara stotram says that when the mountain, on top of the shell of the Tortoise, was rotated to churn the ocean, it provided a soothing massage for Sri Koorma and the Lord slept in great comfort!
Monday, June 22, 2009
In Koorma Avatara, Devas were blessed with power to churn the ocean.
From this Divine name 322, until Divine name 332, Sri Koorma Avatara is explained and is the 16th Petal according to Swami Parasara Bhatta. Till the last Divine name Prana: we saw the Lord's Sri Parasu Rama Avatara. Due to the curse of sage Durvasa, Sri Maha Lakshmi disappeared from all the Three worlds and put Devas and Asuras into problems. They were advised to churn the ocean using Mandira mountain. The Lord took Sri Koorma Avatara to support the huge mountain. From that story of Durvasa, we learn how to be courteous to great persona and how to respect Prasadams. Today's [23rd June 2009] lecture is also from Neduntheru. Prasadam means anugraham or blessings. While we should certainly be eager to receive prasadam, we should be disciplined.
He is the soul for all living beings.
Today's [22nd June 2009] lecture is from Neduntheru [நெடுந்தெரு], about 20 KMs from Kumbakonam and is on the banks of Kudamurutti river. The Lord is Sri RajaGopala Swami. Though He is the soul of all, the Lord says Gyanis are His Atma! They always think of Him and can not tolerate separation even for a second!
Adored by Gyanis like Markandeya.
In the Divine name shishteshta, there are two words fused - shishta and ishta. Shishta means great ones or Gyanis, who are famous for anushtanam or faithfully carrying out all duties as per Vedas and as per elders' customs. We have to follow such shishtacharyas path. Thus the Lord is liked by shishtacharyas. Sri Andal says in Tiruppavai, in pasuram 6, 'ullatthukkondu munivargalum yogigalum [உள்ளத்துக் கொண்டு முனிவர்களும் யோகிகளும்]'.
Q: Is there an age requirement for lighting lamps in Perumal sannidhi?
A: Any one irrespective of sex and age can light, provided they have Bhakti.
Q: Can we light a lamp with Two wicks or Two lamps with one wick each?
A: In this question, lamps with single wick only, are not the subject; it is about standing lamps [kutthu vilakku குத்து விளக்கு] with provision for Five wicks. It is certainly better to light these lamps, with Two, or still better, all the Five wicks; but due to conserving oil, if single wick is lighted, it is not objectionable.
Q: At which time is appropriate to chant SVS?
A: SVS can be chanted anytime; but, those wearing poonool, should chant after performing sandhyavandanam, preferably, in the pooja room, after lighting lamp. Ladies should follow the guidelines of their Acharyas.
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
During pralayam, He, like a mother, impartially, takes care of all in His stomach.
In Sri Ahobila Mutt, KUmbakonam, we worship Sri Lakshmi Narasimha. Kaliyan is given special honours here. Here, during Purattasi - Kettai, birthday of Sri Adivan Satakopa Jeer, festivals are celebrated for Twenty days. In the last SVS sloka  there were Eight Divine names. All about the Lord during pralayam. This is continued. According to Swami Parashara Bhatta, ishtovisishta is single Divine name, while Swami Sankara counts as Two Divine names. The Lord does not differentiate between various atman inside Him. All are treated equally.
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
None could ever understand His eminence.
Anantajit means He has unlimited fame. This recording was done on Vaikasi Tiruvadirai, birthday of the present Srimad Ranga Ramanuja Maha Desikan [popularly known as Sri Mushnam Andavan].
The Lord has Yoga Nidra, which is not regular sleep, but in Yoga. At that time for Thousands of yugs [millions of years], all Universe is stored in His body! Sage Markandeya, went inside His body and was aghast at the site of many, many worlds and could not recall what all he saw inside His body!
yugAdikrth yugAvarthO naikmAyO mahAshanah | adrshyO vyaktha-roopascha sahasra-jith anantha-jith || (33)
By His Yoga nidra, thousands of yugs of Pralaya, is successfully passed over.
Kumbakonam is a city of temples of Sri Vishnu and Shiva. Near Sri Araamudan [Sri Sarngapani] temple and near Potramarai pond, is Kaliyan [Tirumangai Alwar] sannidhi, which is presently Sri Ahobhila mutt. The Lord, when in procession along Potramarai pond, presents special honours to Kaliyan. During Pagal patthu and Irappatthu times in the temple, Kaliyan is brought from Sri Mutt. Similarly, on his birthday, Sri Adi Van Satakopa Swamy [1st Jeer of Ahobhila mutt] arrives at the temple. On another occasion, Sri Amudhan, Sri Chakrapani and Sri Rama, arrive at Mutt and grace devotees.
Sahasrajit means the Lord is beyond time! As mentioned in Bhhotabhavya bhavat prabhu [SVS 11], He is beyond past, present and future. Divine names 301 to 3i3, describe the Lord during pralayam [great deluge] time. During this time none else is existing. All are stored by the Lord in Him. We are subject to births, deaths, growths, etc. But the Lord is ever present. He can not be measured by time.
Monday, June 15, 2009
Possesses Divine auspicious images which reflect His mercy.
[We are resuming from Divine name number 306, after breaking the serial to visit Kanchi Brahmotsavam. After studying Divine name 310, we will jump over to 321.]
We are back at Thoppu Theru Sri Rajagopalan temple, in Kumbakonam. Sri Moolavar is Sri Rama with Sri Sita, while Sri Utsavar is Sri Krishna. Also Sri Rama and Sri Sita are sculpted in the same stone! Also Sri Rama is Jatadhari, with moon crescent on His head. Sri Rajagopala is like in Mannargudi. Sage Markandeya was unable to imagine the Lord's form, as mentioned in Divine name adrusya [SVS 325]! At the same time the Lord is so simple to be available even for us in various temples! As told by Nammalwar, He is available easily for devotees, while He is unavailable for others. Mandodari could realize Him, while Ravana could not.
Friday, June 12, 2009
Famous through out the World.
We are in the conclusion day of Brahmotsavam. Last Ten days we have been experiencing Kanchi Brahmotsavam. There is no procession in the morning. But in the afternoon special poojas are performed. He is taken in procession in Vettiver [வெட்டிவேர்], fibrous material, mantapam, so that He gets cool breeze! He returns, after placing honours on Swami Desika. Also, whatever be the time, whenever He retutns, there would be exchange of garlands with Sri Andal! This way His fame is felt all over, which is prathita! We will resume from where we truncated for a while, from the next lecture.