Updated: Nov 21
Swaami Koorathaazhwaan and Lord Sri Ranganaathaa :-
Swaami Koorathaazhwaan had the regular practice of rendering devotional services towards Lord Sri Ranganaathaa @ Srirangam.
Once, it so happened that Aazhwaan couldn’t render service to the lord and due to this reason Swaami Koorathaazhwaan went on fasting the entire day. Swaami Koorathaazhwaan continued his fasting by reading texts like 4000 Divya Prabandham.
That night, Swaami Koorathaazhwaan’s wife Aandal heard the bells ringing within the temple premises, which indicated that Lord Ranganaathaa was offered food. Aandal at once, thought of Lord Ranganaathaa and said – “Your devotee here is fasting because he couldn’t serve you today and You are enjoying a feast there, is it?”.
Lord Ranganaathaa heard this (for he is the inner consciousness, also known as Antharyaami, for all living and non-living entities, present in the 14 Lokaas) and immediately called out for his temple secretary Utthama Nambi.
Sri Ranganaathaa, ordered Utthama Nambi to take the prasaadam (Akkaara Adisal, a sweet made using raw rice, moong daal, ghee, milk, cashew nuts, grated jaggery,etc) to Koorathaazhwaan’s Thirumaaligai (house of Koorathaazhwaan, written with respect using SriVaishnava terminology).
Utthama Nambi immediately took it to Sri Koorathaazhwaan as per Lord Ranganaathaa’s order. Swaami Koorathaazhwaan heard someone knocking his door, late night. Thinking, whom might come this late night to his home, Swaami Koorathaazhwaan opened the door and saw that it was Utthama Nambi, temple secretary, who had bought the prasaadam (food offered to the Lord).
Koorathaazhwaan, the next minute found out that it was Aandaal who had asked Lord about it, and that, lord had sent this Prasaad to him. Koorathaazhwaan took it from Utthama Nambi’s hands, thanked him and sent Utthama Nambi back to the temple. Swaami Koorathaazhwaan just consumed a little from it and gave the rest to his wife Aandal.
Birth of Sri Paraasarar Bhattar
Aandaal after consuming it, gave birth to two children. Swaami Raamaanujar, named these two kids as Paraasarar Bhattar and Veda Vyaasa Bhattar (fulfilling the one of the three wishes of Swaami Aalavandar, a great Aacharya, for the Sri Sampradaaya, who lived at Srirangam).
Both the kids were born as children of Lord Ranganaathaa and Sri Ranga Naachiyaar.
Sri Paraasarar Bhattar
It is believed that Sri Ranganaayaki Thaayaar used to pat sri Parasarar bhattar’s back and his brother Veda Vyaasa Bhattar’s back, to put him to sleep, when he was a kid.
The Thirumana Pillars (also known as Thirumana Thoongal ),present in front of Sri Ranganaathaa’s sanctum were the pillars in which the cradle was tied to, to put Sri Paraasarar Bhattar and his brother Veda Vyaasa Bhattar to sleep.
Incidents from Sri Paraasarar Bhattar’s life
Swaami Koorathaazhwaan and Sri Paraasarar Bhattar
When Paraasarar Bhattar was young, his father Koorathaazhwaan used to send Paraasarar Bhattar to 4000 Divya Prabandham classes from another scholar of his times, so that his knowledge would grow. Once, Koorathaazhwaan saw Paraasarar Bhattar playing outside without attending the classes (Santhai; a formal method of learning Vedaas & Prabandhams).
When Koorathaazhwaan had enquired about this act to Paraasarar replied saying- “What kind of santhai is this, you keep repeating whatever was thought the previous day, the next day also. How long will Adiyen keep learning the same thing, shouldn’t Adiyen progress on everyday basis?” Koorathaazhwaan replied saying- “That’s how the formal way of learning Prabandhams & Vedaas happen, only if you learn the same thing at-least 10 to 15 times, you will be able to remember it. Ok, Paraasara answer my question now. Since, you have asked me this question, can you tell me what was taught yesterday in the class?”. Immediately, without thinking or hesitation, Paraasarar just told everything whatever was taught the previous day to Koorathaazhwaan. Koorathaazhwaan was surprised to hear this as neither did Paraasarar think before saying nor did he make any error while reciting it.
From, then on Sri Paraasarar Bhattar came to be known as EkaGraahi, meaning one who grasps & understands the subject immediately in his mind and doesn’t require teaching more than once.
Sri Paraasarar Bhattar and Sri Sarvagnya Bhattar :-
Once when Paraasarar Bhattar was playing in the streets with his friends, a person called ‘SARVAGNYA BHATTAR‘ (meaning one who knows everything) had come in a palanquin to Srirangam.
Sri Paraasarar Bhattar saw this and asked this Sarvagnya Bhattar to get down from the palanquin. The next minute, Sarvagnya Bhattar answered Paraasarar Bhattar (thinking that Paraasarar Bhattar was just a kid and what is he going to ask)-Yes, tell me what do you want. Paraasarar Bhattar replied saying- “If you have to enter the Srirangam premises, better answer my question, else you won’t be able to enter Srirangam”. The Sarvagnya Bhattar said- “Ok, ask me any question I can answer it”.
Paraasarar Bhattar picked up a handful of sand and on seeing Sarvagnya Bhattar asked him to tell how many sand particles are there in his hand. Sarvagnya Bhattar starred on seeing Paraasarar Bhattar’s hand, but couldn’t answer his query. Paraasarar Bhattar said – “Keeping the name Sarvagnya Bhattar, you are not able to answer even this question, at-least you could have answered saying that Adiyen is having a handful of sand in my hand; you didn’t even say that”.
On hearing this, Sarvagnya Bhattar realized his mistake, took Paraasarar Bhattar along with him and handed him over to his mother Aandaal, also told her to take a good care of this child (born genius) by not leaving this child on the streets regularly.
Thaniyan (Prayer) for Paraasarar Bhattar :-
SRI PARAASARA BHATTAARYE SRIRANGESA PUROHITHAHA |
SRIVATSAANGA SUTHAHA SHRIMAAN SRIRANGESHAYAM AASHRAYE||
Meaning- May, Sri Paraasara Bhattar, son of Srivatsaanka (Koorathaazhwaan), who was dedicated to lord Ranganaathaa at Srirangam, who was a purohita (one who reads Panchaangam everyday morning before the lord), may he grant us the knowledge which gives us the