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Friday, July 5, 2013

A Tirupati in GauhAti------shrI PeriyavAL's

By shrI PeriyavAL's anugraha visheSham, a BAlAji Mandir and a superior eye hospital have been established in GauhAti.

Efforts to secure the land for this work were taken up in 1991. When the late shrI Hiteswar Saikia who was the Chief Minister of Assam (1991-96), had darshan of shrI PeriyavAL at KAnchipuram in the year 1992, he received with humility from the sage's sacred hands, a rudrAkSha mAlA (that became his rakSha to save him from the ULFA terrorism that prevailed in Assam then), and a crown of flowers. In addition, giving him in pratyekam--specifically for each, a plateful of kalkaNDu--suger lumps, the sage asked him to distribute it with his own hand among his Black Cat security guards who travelled with him. After shri Saikia got back to Assam, he arranged for a good piece of land that was of 50 bighA (18 acre) vistIrNa--area, and was flat and even (in GauhAti, hilly and uneven lands are more), to be donated to shrI PeriyavAL through the Government. In additional, he extended a financial assistance of Rs.10 lakhs from the state exchequer for constructing the temple. This dharma served as the basis for the establishment of the PUrva Tirupati BAlAji Mandir, built according to the South Indian shilpa shAstra--temple architecture. This Mandir now helps the people of this pradeshaM--region, to have darshan of BAlAji in GauhAti itself, thus changing the earlier position of their having to travel a long way to Tirupati in Andhra Pradesh to have the darshan.

shrImant ShankaradevA NetrAlaya Hospital

An Charitable Trust called 'Shri Kanchi Shankara Health and Educational Foundation', was established in Calcutta on the 3rd of January 1994 (that is, 5 days before shrI PeriyavA attained siddhi), with the sahAyam--assistance, of Dr S.S.Badrinath, founder and Chairman (Emeritus) of Shankar Netralaya, Chennai, and by financial donations received from the Tea Estate Companies functioning in the North-Eastern and North India, and from some individual dhanikas--wealthy people.

The very day this Trust was started, a total donation of Rs.30 lakhs got collected. Later in the same shatAbdi anniversary (11.11.1994), when a three-storeyed building at GauhAti, in a place called Beltola (the term 'bilvasthala' became Beltola in their language) was sought to be taken on lease, and when the lease document was about to be written, the building owner gave his building as a free gift to the hospital. I consider this as one among the adbhuta--wonders, shrI PeriyavAL performed, and performing even now. It wouldn't be an overstatement that the hospital very soon grew in a big way, was due to shrI PeriyavAL's anugraha visheSham.

That the kAraNabhUta--cause/reason, for an eye hospital established by a ShankarAchArya SvAmigaL in the lineage of Adi Shankara, instead of functioning under the name 'Shankara Medical Centre', carrying the name of shrImant ShankaradevA, a shrI KRShNa bhakta who lived in Assam in the 15th century, was shrI PeriyavAL himself, and this fact in fairness may not be known to many people.

Admitting even this ELiyEn--simple man, to his grace

On the western bank of the SarvatIrtham located adjacent to the KAshi VishvanAthar Kovil in KAnchi, once shrI PeriyavargaL was performing a puja. A puja in great vistIrNam--elaboration, keeping the Shiva PanchAyatana in the form of sandalpaste balls on a lotus leaf. Some firty, sixty of us around, witnessing it. This puja was held in a thaTTi panDal--thatched shed.

My wife and I, sitting among the bhakta crowd, were chanting the 'LalitA SahasranAmam', in a tone that was madhyama--medium. After the puja was over, waiting with limitless compassion that no hindrance should come to our pArAyaNam until it was finished, shrI PeriyavargaL, did the dhUpa-dIpa-naivedyam, and then waved the Arati.

This incident took place in a way that gave us great santoSham--happiness. Sometime later this event happened, we received the ShrIVidyA Upadesha in order.

RAmanAma mahimA

When shrI PeriyavargaL was in Tenambakkam, my wife and I had gone there. At that time, I was engaged in the kaingariyam--service, of collecting the 'RAmanAma list' written by devotees and sent through an organization called 'ICF KAmakOTi SevA Samiti', and sending them to an Anbar--devotee, who was to build a maNDapam--pavilion, in JamshedpUr, that was to be named "RAmakoTi".

shrI PeriyavargaL asked me, "How many names did you send?" I told him. Forthwith, shrI PeriyavargaL went inside a room and came out carrying a large carton (containing the notebooks of hand-written RAmanAmas, would weigh around 10-12 kilogram). Calling us, he said, "Have this for you". When shrIKaNTan tried to get that burden from him and pass it to us, PeriyavArgaL himself gave it to us directly. We both received it together.

I consider this as shrI PeriyavargaL giving upadesham of RAmanAma to us. Keeping that carton in our puja room, I am preserving it. After some months of his happening, when I did prastAvana--broach, of this sambhavam--event, to shrI PudupPeriyavargaL, forthwith giving a portrait of 'SItA-LakShmaNa-Hanumat sameta shrI RAmachandra MUrti' (this portrait was drawn with RAmanAmas), he gave us his anugraham with the words, "Keep this too."

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