Chennai: JUNE 14-19, 2012

Jagadguru Arrives in Chennai

Jagadguru Shankaracharya Sri Sri Bharati Tirtha Mahaswamiji arrived in Chennai on 14th June 2012 to a grand reception. The Jagadguru was received at the junction of Mount Road and Venkataranarayana Road in T Nagar and then led in a procession towards Sringeri Bharathi Vidyashram in T Nagar. Dignitaries including Chennai’s Mayor, Saidai S Duraisamy, Justice C Nagappan and others participated in the welcome.

Ardent disciple and Chairman of the Chennai Vijaya Yatra Committee, Sri A Krishnamoorthy offered Dhuli Pada Puja. In the Sanskrit Swagatam, Vidwan Mani Dravida Shastrigal offered his Pranams to the Jagadguru and expressed that the long expected arrival and Darshan of the Jagadguru in Chennai had brought great joy to the citizens of the city by recounting the words of the poet Maagha:

“हरत्यघं संप्रति हेतुरेष्यतः शुभस्य पूर्वाचरितैः कृतं शुभैः ।
शरीरभाजां भवदीयदर्शनं व्यनक्ति कालत्रितयेऽपि योग्यताम् ।।”

Through the verse, he was conveying that the Jagadguru’s Darshan brings to light a devotees’ threefold fortune associated with the past, present and future. It is their past good deeds that has given them the Darshan. This Darshan destroys the accumulated sins in the present, and is the forbearer of the welfare that will be brought about in the future.

The Chairman of the Chennai Vijaya Yatra Committee, Sri A Krishnamoorthy reverentially welcomed the Jagadguru in Tamil and said that the Jagadguru had condescended to the request of the citizens by gracing the city and purified it by His presence. Justice C. Nagappan spoke on the occasion saying that it was the foremost duty of everyone to following the teachings of the Jagadguru and prayed that the Jagadguru be enshrined in their hearts forever.

Hon. Chennai Mayor Sri Saidai Duraisamy then welcomed the Jagadguru on behalf of all citizens of Chennai and noted the joy and blessed feelings that the citizens were enjoying at that moment.

In the inaugural address of the Chennai Vijaya Yatra, Sri V. R. Gowrishankar, Administrator and CEO of the Peetham, sought the Blessings of the Jagadguru to bestow strength to all the devotees to offer their services during the observance of the Jagadguru’s Chaturmasya Vrata at Chennai.

Mentioning that Jagadguru Sri Abhinava Vidyatirtha Mahaswamiji had observed Chaturmasya in Chennai in 1960 and had also gone on to celebrate Navaratri at Chennai in that year, Sri Gowrishankar beseeched the Jagadguru on behalf of the citizens to consider giving them the opportunity to serve the Jagadguru during the Navaratri festival as well.

He mentioned that when the Jagadguru had started on the Vijaya Yatra, His destination was Chennai with the Sankalpa to perform the Kumbhabhisheka of Goddess Sharada temple at Kodambakkam. Starting on February 26th 2012, the Jagadguru had taken 109 days to arrive at Chennai gracing many many towns and villages en route.

He also expressed joy that a welcome was being offered to the Jagadguru at the very place (the Vidyashram) from where He had started from, after halting for 44 days in 1995. During the 17 year period, a number of developments had happened in the area with construction of the new temple in Kodambakkam, the Tattvaloka building and research centre in Teynampet, the Tamil monthly magazine Amman Darshanam, as well as education and heath care activities.

He ended the address thanking, on behalf of all devotees of the Sharada Peetham, everyone involved for the heart-warming reception accorded to the Jagadguru, mentioning in particular the Government of Tamil Nadu, the administrative officers and the police officials for making excellent arrangements throughout the Vijaya Yatra.

In His Anugraha Bhashanam, the Jagadguru said that He had arrived in Chennai after 17 years. Yet the devotion of the residents had not lessened but had only increased. The Jagadguru remembered a verse often quoted by His Guru, Sri Mahasannidhanam, from the Bhagavata Mahatmyam where Bhakti, personified as a mother, expresses that she took birth in Dravida Desha (present day Tamil Nadu):

जाताहं द्राविडे देशे वृद्धिं कर्नाटके गता ।
क्वचित् क्वचिन्महाराष्ट्रे गुर्जरे जीर्णतां गता ॥

The Jagadguru said that all the devotees have the faith that unless there is Ishwara Kripa and Guru Kripa, we will not get succeed in our life. Our intelligence and power will be effective only if the above two factors are present. The Jagadguru pointed out that such faith – that there exists Ishwara, the creator, sustainer, destroyer, and the bestower of fruits of all our actions – is most essential in life. Today even though scientists formulate a number of theories, only if we accept Ishwara can we answer the question of who or what is the cause for creation, sustenance and destruction. This is why our ancestors accepted the existence of Ishwara.

The Jagadguru also pointed out that whether you believe in Ishwara or not, Ishwara does not gain or lose anything. He is unaffected whether or not you go to a temple or perform a Puja. Our ancestors had the understanding that worship of Ishwara is for our own good. We have come in their footsteps and we must orient our lives with this understanding.

The Jagadguru said that it is true that in the present day, one has to undertake different professions for one’s livelihood. One may not be able to confine to the shatkarmas – the six karmas of adhyayana (studying), adhyapana (teaching), yajana (performing yaga for the benefit of oneself), yaajana (performing yaga for the benefit of others), daana (charity) and pratigraha (receiving charity). However, the fundamental aspects of belief in Ishwara, worship of Ishwara, faith in Guru and service to Guru must be always nurtured. We revere the Guru in the form of the Trimurtis (Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva) and as Parabrahma Swaroopa. The Jagadguru commended that such Guru Bhakti seen in the assembled devotees was praiseworthy and results in Shreyas.

The Jagadguru then remembered the Guru Bhakti of late Guruseva Dhurandhara Daani Dr. A. Sivasailam, who had strove to bring the Vidyashram at T Nagar to its present shape. The Jagadguru also remembered the final Darshan at Sringeri that Dr. Sivasailam had had in January 2011 and how he had expressed then that he would be engaged in making preparations whenever the Jagadguru decided to grace Chennai. However it is Ishwara Sankalpa that he was not present in the current occasion. The Jagadguru then expressed happiness that his younger brother, Sri A Krishnamoorthy had worked to make the wish of his elder brother come true.

The Jagadguru also expressed happiness that many people filled with ardent devotion had assembled on the occasion. While He had come to perform Kumbhabhishekams at Chennai, He had decided to stay at Chennai to observe Chaturmasya. The Jagadguru attributed to Ishwara Sankalpa that the Sringeri Jagadguru would observe Chaturmasya in Chennai after a gap of 52 years. The Jagadguru also mentioned that the location of Navaratri Celebrations will be as per the will of Ishwara and ended the Anugraha Bhashanam blessing the gathering.

Serpentine queues formed at the Sringeri Bharathi Vidyashram as devotees having longed for the Jagadguru’s Darshan thronged T Nagar to fulfill their longing. The Jagadguru stayed for five days at the T Nagar and started for Kodambakkam on 19th June 2012.




At Abhinava Bharati Satsangh, Adyar

En route to Kodambakkam on June 19th, the Jagadguru graced Abhinava Bharati Satsangh, a spiritual wing of Abhinavas Eye Clinic at Adyar. Dr A G Ramesh of Abhinavas Eye Clinic and founder of the Satsangh expressed in his welcome address that the members of the Satsangh were elated that the Jagadguru had graced the Satsangh within 5 days of His arrival in Chennai. The Satsangh had been formed in 2005 with the Jagadguru’s blessings and recently a large hall had been constructed for the benefit of organizing programmes. The opthalmologist stated that the doctors involved felt that treatments in the Eye Clinic are successful solely due to the Guru’s Grace. Dr. Ramesh remembered that in 2009 the Jagadguru had compassionately given the members of the Satsangh a special Anugraha Bhashanam from 10 pm to 10:30 pm at Guru Nivas after finishing the Chandramoulishwara Puja.

The Jagadguru then released a book “Divine Vision 2012” published by the Satsangh and containing articles pertaining to philosophy, psychology, art and devotion written by many eminent persons. The Jagadguru also released the first volume of a new newsletter “Bharati SandeshaH” being published from the month of June 2012 by the Satsangh detailing its activities; Sri V R Gowrishankar received the first copy.

In His Anugraha Bhashanam, the Jagadguru said that Sri Adi Shankaracharya has given many Upadeshas for the welfare of all. He lucidly expounded the Advaita Siddhanta of the Upanishads in His commentary on the Prasthana Traya. He also penned many Prakarana Granthas, smaller independent texts to convey succinctly the teaching of Vedanta. In His prakarana Granthas, the Acharya has mentioned the importance of Satsangha in a number of places:

लोके सज्जनसङ्गतिरेका भवति भवार्णवतरणे नौका ।
The company of Satpurushas is alone the boat to cross this ocean of Samsara

सङ्गः सत्सु विधीयतां भगवतो भक्तिर्दृढाधीयताम् ।
Be in the company of Satpurushas and strengthen your Bhakti

सत्सङ्गत्वे निःसङ्गत्वं निःसङ्गत्वे निर्मोहत्वम् ।
In the company of Satpurushas, arises detachment and detachment results in the removal of delusion

The Shastras describe Satpurushas as having three essential qualities. He is a Satpurusha who is always thinking of the welfare of the others, who is ever helping others and who looks only at the good in others. Many have the question “How can I find a Satpurusha?”. Look for these qualities in a person and know him to be a Satpurusha who has these qualities.

A Satpurusha will not not look at the character of the person he helps in distress. The Shastras say he alone sees who sees everyone as himself – “आत्मवत् सर्वभूतेषु यः पश्यति स पश्यति. The Satpurusha knows that there is nothing in the world that can be termed entirely faultless or entirely free of good characteristics. So he would filter the faults and look for the good in everyone:

दृष्टं किमपि लोकेऽस्मिन् न निर्दोषं न निर्गुणम् ।
आवृणुध्वमतो दोषान् विवृणुध्वं गुणान् बुधा: ॥

An evil person would only look at the bad traits in everyone. A Satpurusha would however look at even a small good quality in others and make a mountain of it. We too must be like such Satpurushas. This can be achieved by being in the company of a Satpurusha. Such is the message given by Sri Bhagavatpada.

The Jagadguru said that Dr. A G Ramesh has unshakeable faith in the Guru and the Peetham, and remembered his yeoman service to the needy at Sringeri, and expressed His special blessings for him and his team of doctors. The Jagadguru said that it was the wish of such a Satpurusha as Dr. Ramesh that He had first come to the Satsangh during His visits in Chennai. At the request of the Satsangh members, the Jagadguru named the hall as “Advaita Bhavanam” and blessed that everyone understand the core tenets of Advaita Siddhanta and follow the path shown by Sri Bhagavatpada. The members of the Satsangh were overjoyed when the Jagadguru ended His Anugraha Bhashanam saying that He would grace the Satsangh every time He comes to Chennai.