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Sunday, October 10, 2021

the glorious bakthi culture of Thiruvallikkeni - బ్రోవ భారమా రఘురామ !

Thiruvallikkeni the abode of Lord Sri Parthasarathi is a divine place, a place where culture thrives, is replete with places of bakthi moment.  Divinity  is spread through bhajans and keerthanas ! 

Triplicane is famous for its lanes and by-lanes too .. .. for those who have lived in Triplicane for decades – kuthirai vahana mantap at the intersection of Car Street / Singarachari street is too wellknown .. .. of the many roads (lanes) that lead to Barathi salai [should it not be Mahakavi Barathiyar salai aka Pycrofts road] – there is ‘Easwaradoss Lalah Street’ !  (sounds a bit peculiar !!) The great saint Thiyagaraja wrote many keerthanas – and many of them on Sree Ramachandra murthi.    .. .. can you spot or have you observed a religious place here ?!?

எங்கள் எம்மிறை எம்பிரானே !  ஸ்ரீவாசுதேவா!  -  புவனங்கள் யாவும் நீயாகவிருக்க, என்னொருவனைக் காத்தல்  உனக்கு ஒரு  பளுவா?  நீயே பெருந்தெய்வம்.  நீயே கோடிக்கணக்கான அண்டங்களை உனது திருவயிற்றிலே கொண்டவனவல்லவா !!  .. .. பாற்கடலில், தயையுடன் அமரருக்காகவும், மேலும் கோபியருக்காகவும், மலைகளைச் சுமந்தவன் நீ அன்றோ !!  -  புவனங்கள் யாவும் நீயாக  இருக்க - இந்த பக்தனை காப்பது ஒரு வேலையா!!   பளுவா? ஸ்ரீராமபிரான் மீது மனமுருகி  தியாகய்யர் பாடிய இந்த கீர்த்தனையை கேட்டு இருக்கிறீர்களா ?

Though this is dedicated to Sree Rama, here is one most beautiful Krishna !!

Rai Raja Ishwar Das Lala Dayavant Bahadur as he liked to be referred to lived off Pycrofts Road (now Bharati Salai) where a street is named after him. A parallel street is Raja Hanumantha Lala Lane, taking its name from a kinsman. It was in this street that Ishwar Das built a temple for Kamakala Kameswarar, installing a white Shiva Linga in it. Following his death in the late 1890s, his son Lakshmi Chand took over the management.  (thanks to historian V Sriram)

The Greatest of Ithihasa purana   ‘Sri Ramayanam’  is the undiluted history of the Greatest Person who descended on this Universe, on the banks of river Sarayu, in a prosperous country called ‘Koshala’.    Lord Rama descended on earth for the purpose of upholding righteousness and rewarding virtue.  Lord Rama is the epitome of all virtues and the perfect human being who abandoned the throne and served exile in the forest for the sake of honour of his beloved father.  Lord Rama  came in the dynasty of Iskshvahu.

ஸ்ரீராமச்சந்திர மூர்த்திக்கு குலசேகராழ்வார் பாடிய பிள்ளை தமிழ் தாலாட்டு பாசுரம் இங்கே:  

மன்னுபுகழ் கெளசலை தன் மணிவயிறு வாய்த்தவனே!

தென்னிலங்கை கோன்முடிகள் சிந்துவித்தாய் செம்பொன்சேர்*

கன்னி  நன்மாமதிள்புடைசூழ் கணபுரத்தென் கருமணியே !

என்னுடைய இன்னமுதே இராகவனே தாலேலோ


நிலை நின்ற புகழையுடைய கௌசலை தன் அழகிய வயிற்றிலே திருவவதரித்தவனே!;  தென்னிலங்கையை அரசாண்ட  ராவணனுடைய பத்துத் தலைகளையும் சிதறப் பண்ணினவனே!; செம்மையான தங்கத்தினால்   செய்யப்பட்டதாய், அழிவில்லாததாய்,  நல் விலக்ஷணமாய் பெரிதான  திருமதிள்களாலே நாற்புறமும் சூழப்பட்ட திருக்கண்ணபுரத்தில் எழுந்தருளியிருக்கிறஅழகிய நீல ரத்னம்  போன்ற எம்பெருமானே! எனக்கு போக்யமான அம்ருதமாயிருப்பவனே!-  இராகவனே!  ஸ்ரீராமனே!  உமக்கு தாலாட்டு என படுகிறார் குலசேகர ஆழ்வார்.  

Among the thousands of temple dedicated to Him – some that readily come to mind could be :  Thiru Ayodhya, Chitrakoot, Badrachalam, Rameswaramn, Thriparayar, Thillaivilagam, Vaduvur, Maduranthakam, Thiru pullampoothangudi, Thiruvelliyangudi,   .. … … and more.   This is not a post on any divyadesam but on a beautiful ancient Bhajan Mutt  associated with Lord Sree Rama. 

I have walked in Easwaradas Lala Street hundreds of time, may be in hurry to catch bus, hurry to reach home .. .. have seen this holy place – could never go in – recently was fortunate to go in and have a glimpse of Sree Rama in an evening and this morning provided another great opportunity to go and converse with Sri Vijayaraghava bagavathar.  This gentle man is well know to Triplicanites, especially to all those who come to Sri Parthasarathi swami thirukovil regularly.  He is deeply immersed in Azhwar pasurams and has been hearing vyagyanams / kalakshepams from many renowned Srivaishnava scholars.  

Sri Kothanda Ramaswami Baktha Jana Sabha for sure was steeped in glory in its heydays with regular bhajans and occasional purappadus too.  This beautiful mutt houses centuries-old Thanjavur art painting of Sree Seetha Rama Lakshmana murthis- one big beautiful painting as Moolavar and another as Uthsavar.  There are invaluable paintings of NamPerumal and Sree Kothaipiratti too – should not be calling them paintings – they are manifestation of our Perumal, so aesthetically drawn that even eye-brows of Andal look so real and the pirabhai of Namperumal is exquisitely drawn with intricate details.  It has some inscriptions that are centuries old too .. ..

Vijayaraghava bagavathar’s family has been maintaining this bajanai mutt for centuries – the rich tradition now being carried by the present torch-bearer.  Thre is a painting  of Thiyagarajar too – as Vijayaraghavan proudly claims their music heritage .. ..have heard from elders that Thigayya visited Sri Parthasarathi Swami temple and performed in front of Him during Ekantha Seva. 

It was such a nice day – having darshan at this well maintained Bhajanai sabha and conversing with its keeper.  Also visited his house and had darshan of Thiruvaadhana idols, especially the very exquisite Krishna (VEnnaikku aadum pillai)

Kakarla Tyagabrahmam  famously known as Tyāgarājar and Tyagayya, was one of the greatest composers of Carnatic music.  He    was born in 1767 in Tiruvarur. தன்னுடைய வாழ்நாளில் இரண்டு கோடி முறை ராம நாமத்தை உச்சரித்து, ராமனின் தரிசனம் காணும் பேறு பெற்ற தியாகராஜர் 1847-ம் ஆண்டு   இராமன் திருவடிகளை அடைந்து, முக்தி பெற்றார்.

For sure, you have heard many famous singers singing this Thiyagaraja keerthana ‘ Brova bharama’  - In this beautiful keerthana , Sri Thyagaraja swamy pleads with Lord Rama to  protect him too among the millions of human beings living in this Universe.  

బ్రోవ భారమా రఘురామ  !  భువనమెల్ల నీవై నన్నొకని

brōva bhāramā, raghu rāma  !  bhuvanamella nēvai, nannokani

ப்3ரோவ பா4ரமா ரகு4 ராம பு4வனமெல்ல நீவை நன்னொகனி (ப்3ரோவ)

Before concluding, some of film buffs would remember Sivaji Ganesan starrer- Kavari Maan (musk deer) released in 1979  directed by S. P. Muthuraman and produced by B. H. Rajanna. Maestro Illayaraja scored the music and here is a mellifluous rendering of the keerthana sung by K Jesudoss. :

adiyen Srinivasadhasan
Mamandur Veeravalli Srinivasan Sampathkumar
10th Oct 2021.   


  1. All pictures very very nice🙏🙏🙏. I too have crossed many times. But never new all this.

  2. Nice to see the coverage of these important local mutts and bhajhanai temples which have nourished bhakthi at grassroot level