Manarppakkathu Nambi was an ardent devotee of Lord Devaraja Perumal of Kancheepuram. Nambi was residing near the temple and was performing several divine services daily .
For his unstinted devotion and service , Lord of Kanchi Devaraja Perumal out of abundant mercy taught him few esoteric truths in his dream and commanded Nambi, My child !! “Now that you have absorbed esoteric subjects from me, please go to the holy land between two rivers and await for the rest ……
(iraNdAtthukku naDuvilE centru kEtkkalAm)”
you shall get the rest from there .
Manarpakkam Nambi was overjoyed with Lord’s abundant grace . He faithfully moved to Srirangam and with the locals support built a small temple for Lord Varadarajar . As done earlier he quietly lived there worshiping the LORD reflecting on the esoteric meanings revealed by Lord .
One day , Swamy Pillai Lokacharya the most respected Acharyar along with disciples visited the small temple for having darshan of LORD . Acharyar was very pleased to see the ambiance around . Offering his obeisance’s to LORD VARADARAJA he felt like spending some more time inside the temple . Observing the quiet nature of the place he began teaching his disciples few meanings of esoteric truths . Nambi who was serving the Lordships inside the sanctum was listening to the discourse . He noticed Acharyas command in the subject and related the meanings quoted were almost the same as revealed by Lord Varadar in his dream .
Overjoyed , he rushed to the dais amongst the advanced devotees and bowing at Swamy Pillai Lokacharya’s lotus feet, offered obeisance’s and asked him…
avarO nIr?! avarO nIr?!
(are you him? Are you the one?)……………………
To that Swamy Pillai Lokacharyar replied smilingly
AAm. seyvathu En?
“Yes, my child !! and why do you ask?”. Manarpakkam Nambi submitted his dream to him. .
Pillai Lokacharya was glad to note about his unstinted devotion to Lord . He showered his blessings at the young devotee and took him as his disciple. Swamy advised him to join the assembled group of devotees and taught him the meanings in detail .
The entire summary of these esoteric truths turned out to become ” Sri Vachana Bhushanam ” the most important book for all the srivaishnavas .
“however lower in caste one is born doesn’t matter for me, if he is a bhAgavathOththaman, he is my swAmi”. Having these meanings in mind the divine outpourings are summed up …..
Pillai Lokacharya’s primary disciples were Koorakuloththama Dasa, Manarpakkam Nambi, Kollikavala Dasa , Kotturilanar and Vilanjsolai Pillai. Pillai Lokacharya authored several works including the eighteen rahasya granthas known together as Ashtadasa Rahasya and Gadyatraya Vyakhyanam.
Pillai Lokacharya expresses in his works , that LORD sees this sorry state of affairs of jivatmas and thinks of simple ways and means of correcting them who have strayed in the wrong path. Lord’s abundant mercy blesses them to seek salvation by making them understand the real purpose of life . They seek a good teacher in understanding the esoteric truths and start serving LORD .The dangers of this life with its temporary pleasures but permanent derailment in taking repeated births makes them worried . They realize that life in this world is comparable to the life of a helpless frog caught in the mouth of a snake . A doe caught in a forest fire running hither and thither not knowing where safety lies. Realising their fate is none better than that of a helpless ant caught between the two ends of a burning stick and torn by the five senses seek refuge ..Swamy Pillai Lokacharya wrote 18 rahasyas books expounding the fundamental vaishnavite philosophy and shastras. The Archiradhi is one such rahasya .Swamy Pillai Lokacharya’s magnum opus “Sri Vachana Bhushanam” is an ornament of divine outpourings from our revered Poorvavacharyas. This great work consists of almost 465 aphorisms which all sri vaishnavas must strive to follow by Acharyars krupai and revelation .The master piece of the work discusses in detail about Lord , Goddess, bhakthi and Prappathi , service to Acharya and Acharyar as a means to obtain the goal , the greatness of the ones who follow the above path , the great ones who are scholars in the scriptures and their joy in attaining the desired goal.
Lokacharyar Sri Pillai Lokachariar was instrumental in saving our rich legacy of darisanam by taking the most privileged service of bringing Namperumal safely out of Srirangam during the tyrant Malik Kafur invasion during the year 1323.
Lokacharyar along with many disciples went through the rough terrains, forests, and so on, carrying our LORD safely .
When they reached Jyothiskudi, near to Madurai , Swamy Pillai Lokachariar realized that he cannot carry on any more, so he decided to stay in Jyothishkudi itself serving the LORD incognito . He advised his disciples to remain devoted to LORD always . Lokaacharyan was rightly glorified as ulagAriyan – ( teacher of the universe).
While Swamy was about to leave this world and reach Acharyan’s Lotus feet, he started touching the ants and other such insects near to him with compassion … ( as all such living beings will get to reach Sri Vaikunta if they have got that service done by a Sri Vaishnava).
Such was Sri Pillai Lokacharya’s Karunya towards the living beings.
Lokaachaarya gurave krSHNapaadhasya soonave |
samsaarabhogi sandhaSHta jeeva jeevathave namaha ||
Adiyen Ramanuja dasan
Pics : Courtesy Google images