author:....... InduvAsan, VAlAjApeTTai
compiler:..... T.S.KOthaNDarAma sarma
For the first time, on 18.3.1978, I had darshan of PeriyAvAL.
It was a sacred --auspicious day. The when PeriyavA admitted me into his grace--ATkoNDa dinam.
My father shrI TR SundaramUrti (teacher, VAlAjA) has told me several times about the --greatness, of PeriyavAL. With him, I too have had darshan of PeriyavAL. It was just a darshan, with no feelings of ecstasy cropping up inside me.
But then the darshan of the eighteenth of March, altogether drew me towards his side.
Like the --Shiva's group of assistants, who do service to --Lord of KailAsh, I too was admitted to the group of servants who did service to PeriyavAL.
PeriyavA was then staying in SivAsthAnam. You know what task did he assign to me?
The task of watering, drawing water from the well there, the cows and calves of shrIMaTham and the mango plants and creepers there! In addition, the sweet task of preparing --jaggery-sweetened water drink, to satisfy the thirst of the --(Tamizh) devotees, who thronged the place.
At those times, I did not know anything about the --religious routines, and the --customs, of shrIMaTham. People like METTUr RAjagopAla --uncle, (later, METTUr SvAmigaL), and BAlu trained me in those practices.
When he was doing --going round, in the SivAsthAnam BrahmapurIsvarar --temple, PeriyavA would look at every plant there, and also look at the cows and calves, compassion welling up. (In later days, I had thought and felt happy about how much --fortune, those plant-creepers and cow-calves should have earned to get PeriyavAL's --deep glance, grace them.)
Those days PeriyvAL himself would ask me, "What did you do today?" What he said on my reply would contain --many teachings. Any mistakes I committed, he would indicate and raise me up, without my knowing it--without hurting me.
Every day, early morning at three o' clock, starting from SivAsthAnam, he would do of the four --surrounding main streets, of shrI VaradarAja PerumAL temple (all of us accompanying him, chanting the repeatedly, in low voice).
*** *** ***
The day of 1978 April 16th.
Starting as usual at three in the early morning, after having darshan at shrI KAmAkShIamman temple, and then at SureshvarAchArya's --divine abode, at shrIMaTham, he started his --travel on foot, towards a --village, called KIzhambi.
KAnchIpuram-vAsis--residents of KAnchIpuram, assembling in large numbers, supplicated to him in tears, not to go on for --long distance.
PeriyavAL was observing --complete, inactive silence. Without showing any signs, he contined to walk.
From a place called Chinnappa Samudram, on the way to AnantapUr, we stayed in a village called Katri. In this village, there is a --ancient, LakShmI NarasiMha temple.
Starting from AnantapUr and arriving at Sanghamesvaram, we then proceeded and stayed in a dilapidated --pavilion, in a place called TammApuram.
The date of June 27, 1978 is one that cannot be forgotten in my life! On that auspicious day, I had the fortune of having darshan of MahA-PeriyavAL and Pudu-PeriyavAL together.
In that small in disrepair, the --thrice a day, ChandramaulIshvara puja was performed in a grand manner.
From TammApuram, through the place called DADi-badri, we arrived at a place called KUtthi. A grand reception for PeriyavAL in that town. The --staff, and the town people had made elaborate facilities for our stay. Everyone was in --joy.
Then, from that place, we reached a small village named RAjApuram, at a distance of five kilometers. It was a day (13.7.78) of : that is, lasted only up to ten in the morning on that day. So, finishing our --(Tamizh) food, before ten o' clock, we started towards a village called TimmAnjcharlA, thirty kilometers away. Without stopping anywhere en route, we were walking slowly. The time of night arrived. In addition, it started raining heavily! Hailstorm with thunder!
The path ahead was totally invisible! No sight of the ups and downs on the road was possible, and the legs slipped often. A good building was seen nearby. We had the yearning if PeriyavA would tell us, 'we can stay there'.
"Walk chanting ", were his orders. In other words, it was understood that we were not going to stay anywhere en route.
At that time, PANAmpaTTu KaNNan and I were going in the front, dragging the cycle rickshaw. shrIKaNThan and shrI BAlu came behind, along with PeriyavA, pushing the rickshaw. METTUr RAjagopAla came behind, on the right side of the rickshaw. Leading us was shrI Chandramauli (ChInu 's son), signalling us through our passage with an electric torchlight.
It was eleven-thirty at night when we reached TimmAnjcharlA! The next morning we reached a bigger place called GuNDakkal.
The --camp, was at GuNDakkal. A day after, I had to get back to KUtthi for a task. I went looking at the road I passed through. Only then it was known that the path we walked through two days back was a pukka jungle path!
1975, August 6th.
We were reading . PeriyavA told us then.
"SvAmi--god Shiva, has the name at (the temple in) Tirumanggalak-kuDi.
"The puranic legend of the place says that Agastya muni, doing (controlling his breathing), brought water from the river, and did to using his two hands. To control breathing is , not just touching the nose and chanting the mantra. When doing , one should control breathing and do it.
" means a peacock's tail. There is a --statement,
When the clouds gather and grow thick in the sky, peacocks would spread out their tails and dance in joy. Herons would fly forming a row that resembles a garland. Parameshvara's dance was said to be one such! The --clouds, called , the --garland of bones that resembled a crowd of white herons, and his like a peacock dancing with its tail spread out! ... what beautiful --simile!"
*** *** ***
"A man named gave a wood apple to --Shiva, at .
"SvAmi in this place married --DurgA, and went around in his wedding procession in --(Tamizh) form of an old man. After giving darshan to everyone, he disappeared --as a couple. Then he gave darshan to the sage KAtyAyana, with five hundred --ascetics. The SvAmi at this place has a--(Tamizh) nickname, called --bridegroom god!
"In the street, there lived the --those who followed the KAtyAyana sUtra text, who were trained in the . Here, for five hundred men, the name was only --one who has the Eye, literally. Only for the five-hundred-and-first man, there would give SvAmi's name.
"In the month of --full moon day of VaikAsi month, the --annual festivities, would be held in the temple. Only if five hundred people are present, could this be held.
"There are five wonders in the --country of the Chozhas. 1. AvuDaiyAr-kOil --curved roof of thinning stone; 2. Tiruvalan-chuzhi --a latticed window of granite; 3. The --brick pavilion, at TiruvIzhi-mazhalai; 4. The --compound wall, at KiDArang-koNDAn; and 5. The images of the eye and the --wood apple, seen on the legs of the --procession idol, at ViShNupuram temple.
"Once when there was famine, Appar and Sambandhar sang verses (on Shiva) invoking financial help to do---feed, the --devotees. ShivaperumAn showered his grace (in reply) by keeping (two) gold coins on the --pedestal for offers to the deity, at the TiruvIzhimazhalai temple. Appar got a blemishless, full coin and Sambandhar got a defective coin at that time."
*** *** ***
When we were doing -of--reading, the , he spoke to us about Kambar and AmbikApati.
"In the at TiruvoTRiyUr, to a girl who was working as a maid, Kambar was born.
"A woman called Ambikai CheTTy was worshipping a at KIzhambi. That had the name AmbikApatIshvarar. That very name Kambar gave his son. Kambar's wife too belong to TiruvoTRiyUr.
"The --town, that was known by the name in the ancient time is now called TakkOlam.
"ToNDaimaNDalam was a --country, which was the very embodiment of --speaking truth. This --information, is seen in the stone epigraphs of Asoka's time."
In this way, PeriyavA would tell us countless pieces of news at frequent times.
*** *** ***
1978, September 21.
PeriyavA was staying in a car shed. The then prime minister shrI MorArji DesAi, and with him shrI P.RAmachandran, VAjpAi, DevarAj Urs, came and had darshan of the sage in that car shed.