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Monday, April 15, 2013

Maha PeriyavaL - Darisana AnubhavangaL

Why the Name Ammangar Street?
author:..... Seema Bhattar, Kanchipuram
compiler:... T.S. Kothandarama Sarma
book:......... Maha PeriyavaL - Darisana AnubhavangaL vol. 1, pages 257-263
publisher:.. Vanathi Padhippaham (Aug 2006 Edition)

The portion where there was (carved) a shaN^khu (conch) in the Kanchipuram Vararaja PerumaaL temple's utsavar tirumeni (holy body of the processional deity) was completely worn out. But then this came to be noticed only suddenly. Immediately, Srinivasan, the executive officer of the temple and Seema Bhattar (a priest) immediately went for darshan of Sri PeriyavargaL and apprised him of the dosha in Sri Varadhar's Utsava Tirumeni. Realizing the urgency of the situation, Sri PeriyavargaL ordered for contacting Devasenapathi, the sthapati (sculptor) at Swamimalai over phone, told the matter himself to the sculptor and asked the man to come over to Kanchipuram immediately. Observing great AchAram (religious purity), the sculptor repaired Sri Varadhar's Tirumeni and restored its previous glory. Ordinarily, works of this kind cannot be completed with such ease and urgency. Realizing that this was possible only because of Sri PeriyavargaL's special efforts and anugraha balam (strength of grace), everyone was surprised and happy.

The Ashta Lakshmi temple at Besant Nagar, Chennai came to a stage of completion due to the efforts of Mukkur Lakshmi Narasimhacharya. He came for Sri PeriyavargaL's darshan and apprised the sage of the completion of the temple works. Sri PeriyavargaL asked him, "Has the pratiSTA (installation) of the PerumaaL vigraha been done?" Mukkur Swamy replied that no Perumaal vigraha was installed in the temple. Sri PeriyavargaL immediately ordered for sculpting a Perumaal idol for the temple. After the PerumaaL idol was ready, Mukkur Swamy took it and showed it to Sri PeriyavargaL. The sage had a glance of the idol. He then pointed Justice Kailasam and his wife Saundara Kailasam who had come for his darshan to Mukkur Swamy by way of introducing them and said, "This man is going to be a Supreme Court Judge next week". Sri PeriyavargaL also asked the Judge to have a keen darshan of the idol.

The Judge and his wife took what Periyavaa said suddenly as his words of grace and considered it their bhAgyam, without giving any more importance to it.

As foretold by Sri PeriyavargaL, the very next week Justice Kailasam received orders appointing him as a Supreme Court Judge! Saundara Kailasam happily talked about Sri PeriyavargaL's jnAna dRSTi (prevision) with everyone she met. The PeriumaaL idol was also installed in the Ashta Lakshmi temple.

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Once Seema Bhattar took a tulsi (basil) garland that adorned Sri Varadhar to Sri PeriyavargaL, made him wear it and rejoiced. As a honour in return, Sri PeriyavargaL gave him a crystal chain. Generally, Sri Vaishnavas don't wear a crystal chain, but Bhattar accepted and wore it. Some Vaishnavas in the temple objected to his wearing a crystal chain. Bhattar consulted Sri PeriyavargaL and wore the same chain with gold and coral beads added to it as advised by the sage. This was acceptable to the Vaishnavas in the Varadhar temple. Sri PeriyavargaL's skill of removing obstacles met with unanimous appreciation.

*** *** ***

Sri PeriyavargaL was once camping in the Anaikatti Street MaTham in Kanchipuram. At that time, the popular carnatic vocal artiste Smt. M.S. Subbulakshmi was staying in a house in the Reddy Street with the intention of having darshan of Sri PeriyavargaL. During one of those days, Smt. M.S. was singing marvelously in the Anaikatti Street MaTham in order that Sri PeriyavargaL would listen to it. Suddenly Sri PeriyavargaL came out and asked her to stop singing. Then he asked all those who were there listening to the songs to disperse. Then he asked the entire place to be washed with water mixed with cow dung. No one initially understood the reason for the sage's orders. After sometime, Sri PeriyavargaL explained that when Smt. M.S. was singing, a person who sat among her listeners was a karma bhraSTa (one who neglects his dharmic duties) who did not perform any rites for his dead mother and said, "Because that the place he occupied became unclean, I asked for having it washed with cow-dung and for the singing to be halted." When it was inquired as to who that karma bhraSTa was, it transpired that he was a cinema director. People were rapturous about Sri PeriyavargaL's jnAna dRSTi.

Sri PeriyavargaL was once camping in the Chinna Kanchipuram. A family from Chennai came to Kanchipuram for having darshan of the sage. Leaving the jewels that were bought for a marriage in their family in the car, they entered the camp for the darshan. Immediately on sighting them, Sri PeriyavargaL ordered, "You have had enough of my darshan; start immediately (to get back to your place)." Puzzled, the family returned to their car and found that the jewels they had left in the car were stolen. They came back to Sri PeriyavargaL and apprised him the matter. Sri PeriyavargaL said, "The thief who stole the jewels will be in the nearby bus stand. Catch him there and get back your jewels." Accordingly, they rushed to the bus stand and caught hold of the thief. The jewels were restored. They came back to Sri PeriyavargaL again, told  the news and took leave after paying their obeisance to him.

In a similar manner, once a devotee came from Chennai came to Chinna Kanchipuram MaTham to have darshan of Sri PeriyavargaL. As he saw him, Sri PeriyavargaL asked him to rush back to Chennai immediately. Later the news was received that the person died of a heart attack as he neared Chennai. Sri PeriyavargaL's jnAna dRSTi was everyone talk of wonder.

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When he was in Chinna Kanchipuram, Sri PeriyavargaL once asked the people who came for his darshan, "There is a street called Ammangar Street here. How did the street get this name?" The Vaishnavas assembled there had no idea. Sri PeriyavargaL explained, "That was the street where the houses of Ayyangars and their devimaars (wives) were located a few centuries back. So it came to be called Ayyangar-Ammangar Street, which became just Ammangar street in the passage of time." The Vaishnavas were happy to know this news.

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Once Sri PeriyavargaL was sitting in the VenuGopal Swami Sannidhi in the Tenambakkam village near Chinna Kanchipuram. Seema Bhattar went to have his darshan during that time. Sri PeriyavargaL recited to him the holy  words of Desikar, 

"ponnahil sErnthu alaikkum punal vEhai vadakarayil
Tennan uhanthu thozhum tEna Vedhiyar dhaivam onRE

and said, "The asal (capital) invested by your ancestors (Brahma) is in Hastagiri. You people (who are of his lineage) are only getting the vaTTi (interest) earned from that asal."

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Once over forty brahmins from the area Vanniya Teynampet in Chennai came to have darshan of Maha Periyavaa. After their obeisance to the sage, they expressed their common mental agony: that brahmins were not able to go around in the area with respect as some atheists made fun and showed animosity whenever they came across the hair-tufts, sacred threads, and Vaishnavite marks that adorned the body of a brahmin. As he heard this, Sri PeriyavargaL asked them, "You people do the Gayatri Japam every day?" There was silence. He advised them, "Continue to do the Gayatri Japam daily. Everything will be all right." 

As advised, they started doing did Gayatri Japam daily. Within two months the situation changed to their complete satisfaction. They met Periyavaa happily and conveyed the news. Periyavaa told them, "All the problems are due to your giving up Gayatri mantra. The power of Gayatri mantra is immesurable."

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