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Sunday, September 3, 2023

Avani Revathi 2023 - ரங்கபுர விஹார, ஜெய கோதண்டராமா

People from this place  are primarily engaged in weaving, making matches and agriculture. Traditional weavers weave cotton yarn using handlooms. Small companies operate power looms and allied trades of preparing the thread for weaving and dyeing. The other major industry is the manufacture of match boxes, which includes manufacturing small boxes that contain matchsticks, preparing match sticks and loading them on to the matchboxes. The area of land under cultivation has fallen due to failing rains and relatively poor soil fertility. The soil type is black soil, which supports crops like kezhvaragu, cumbu, cholam, cotton and sunflower. Kanni breed of goats, a drought-resistant variety reared for its meat, is most common in this region.

The place was   a zamindari estate  ruled by the Telugu Nayak dynasty whose ancestors hailed from Chandragiri in present-day Andhra Pradesh. During an invasion of Alauddin Khalji, Kumaramuttu Nayak the founder of the dynasty migrated from Chandragiri to Tirunelveli where he was granted the region comprising the later-established Ettaiyapuram estate. The town was established in 1567.  It is Ettayapuram, a panchayat town in Thoothukudi district of Tamil Nadu. It is the birthplace of   Mahakavi Bharathiyar.  A great exponent of Carnatic music  died on 21 October 1835 here. A samadhi was erected here in his memory  attracts musicians and admirers.

The doyen of Carnatic music was a Poet, Singer, Veena player and composer of classical keerthanas of which  around 500 are commonly known,  noted for their elaborate and poetic descriptions of Hindu Gods and temples and for capturing the essence of the raga forms through the vainika (veena) style that emphasises gamakas.  For sure you have heard this multiple times.

रङ्ग पुर विहार जय कोदण्ड –  रामावतार रघुवीर श्री

ரங்கபுர விஹார ஜெய கோதண்ட - ராமாவதர ரகுவீர ஸ்ரீ |

Victory to the divine Rama, the courageous hero of the Raghu dynasty,

Residing in the colored city of Rangapura.

"Rangapura Vihara"  - the title of the song means one who roams (vihara) in Srirangam (Rangapura), a  holy temple town in Tamil Nadu,  surrounded by holy Cauvery.  The keerthanai details the exploits of the Lord Rama, whose family deity is Ranganatha of Srirangam. The most famous version of this song was rendered by M.S.Subbulakshmi, live at the United Nations.

Its composer, Muthuswami Dikshitar (1776 – 1835), was a poet, singer and veena player, and a legendary composer of Indian classical music, one of the musical trinity of Carnatic music. Muthuswami Dikshitar was born in Tiruvarur near Thanjavur,   to a family that is traditionally traced back to Virinichipuram in the northern boundaries of the state.   Muthuswami moved to the town of Manali, near Madras at the behest of Venkatakrishna Mudaliar, a local zamindar. The Dikshitar brothers accompanied the zamindar to Fort St. George nearby where they were introduced to Western orchestral music and the violin. An ascetic named Chidambaranatha Yogi then took Muthuswami under his wing and away to the city of  Benares.  Deekshithar was blessed by Tiruttani Murugar who  placed a piece of sugar candy in his mouth and commanded him to sing. This marked the beginning of his career in music and also led to him adopting the mudra, Guruguha, one of the many names of Murugan. His first composition was Śrināthādi guruguho jayati jayati in the raga Maya Malavagaula.  Muthuswami Dikshitar's brothers Chinnaswami  and Balaswami Dikshitar were also noted musicians.     

Today Sunday 3.9.2o23 is  REvathi nakshathiram in the month of Avani – it rained very heavily in the  evening and there was no purappadu.  Here are some photos of Srimannathar (Sri Ranganathar)  siriya mada veethi purappadu on 12.9.2022

adiyen Srinivasa dhasan
Mamandur Veeravalli Srinivasan Sampathkumar

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