Thursday, January 27, 2011

Chapter 1 - Part 1: SrIman NAdamunigal

(I have had to do so much research just to get the first 4 pages translated!)

JyEshtE anUrAdhAsambhUtam vIranArAyanEpurE
gajavaktrAmsam AchAryam Adhyam NadamunimbajE

In the divyadEsam called VIranArAyanapuram, there was a pious sadamarshana kulathilakar by the name of Ishvara Battar. He was blessed with a son in Kaliyuga year 3985 (883 A.D if Kaliyugam started in the year 3012 BC) of sObakruth in the month of Ani in Anusha star. He was named NAdar. He was brought up in a very 'sath' way, following all anushtAnams and sampradAyams.

When NAdar grew up, he was married to AravindappAvai, daughter of VangIpuraththAchchi.  SrI NAdamuni continued to performs kaingaryams to Lord MannAr in VIranArAyanapuram and grew into a nishttayogi. In due time, nAdamuni was blessed with a son named Ishvara muni. The child grew up with all necessary upadEsams received by his father.

One day, NAdamunigal decided to take the entire family on a pilgrimage of kshEtrams in North India. After receiving the blessing of SrImannAr, they visited Vada Madurai, SaligrAmam and AyOdhyA while immersing themselves in the holy waters of GangA, YamunA and SarayU. They finally decided to settle down at GOvardhan on the banks of the river YamunA.

One day SriMannAr appeared in NAdamuni's dream, and asked that he come back to VIranArAyanapuram and visit him once again. After getting the blessings of Yamunai Thuraivar, Nadamunigal made a trip back home via Kasi, PurushOthamam (where he received JagannAthan's blessings), SimmAdhri, AhObilam, TiruvEngadam, KadigAchalam, KAnchIpuram, TiruvahIndrapuram, TirukkOyilUr and Tiruvarangam. On his return, SrI MannAr welcomed him back as a mothey jouously embracing a son who had returned from an overseas stay. NAdamunigal had the full katAksham of Lord MannAr and the people of VIranArayanapuram came to realize the greatness of NAdamuni and paid homages to him in an attempt to get salvation.

It so happened that a few Tirunagari SrI Vaishnavas came into town once and narrated the beautiful Thiru VAi Mozhi "ArA amudhE adiyEn udalAm". The last lines were "KurukUrch ChatagOpan kuzhalil maliyach chonna OrAyiraththil ippaththum mazhalai thIra vallAr kAmar maney NOkkiyarkE" Through thos wonderful tiruvAi mozhi, NAdamunigal came to know that these were only 11 songs among 1000 supposedly sung in favor of Kannan by KuruKuch ChatagOpan". Excitedly, SrI NAdamunigal asked the devotees if they knew all the 1000, but they sadly did not.  They said that even though they were from Tirunagari, they had been touring all the divya dEsams and when they went to Tirukkudandhai and prayed to ArAvamudhan, they were graced with the 11 songs. They got the thIrtha prasAdam from NAdamunigal and departed from there.

There began the quest for the remaining pAsurams. NAdamunigal went to Tirukkudandhai and asked around, but no one knew anything beyond the 11 pAsurams. The next stop was AzhvAr tirunagari where he met a divine man by the name of ParAngusa DAsar. From him, he learnt 11 more paasurams starting with "Kanninun siruththAmbu" composed by Madurakavi Azhvar in praise of KurukUrch Chatagopan who is none other than NammAzhvar. ParAngusa DAsar suggested that NAdamunigal sincerely recite this paasuram 12,000 times with utmost devotion to the Lord to get his Graces. NAdamunigal was very sincere in his attempt and followed the instructions most fruitfully: At the bequest of PerumAl and PirAtti, NammAzhvar appeared before NAdamunigal and asked him what he wanted. An elated NAdamuni revealed that he wanted to know all the TiruvAi mozhis. Much to his surprise, he came to know that there were not just a 1000, but 4000 of them. The 1000 were just the Tiruvai mozhis of NammAzhvar, but the remaining were the works of the other 11 AzhvArs.

The other BhAgavatAs who witnessed this wondrous sight, shared an interesting story at that point of time.

(To be concluded in Part 2: feeling sleepy now!)

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