Friday, January 31, 2014

Telling Guru Paramparai Slokams

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We have now started applying Dwadasa Urdhva Pundram and have started using our Dasya Namam.

Guru Paramparai Slokams and Taniyans
During Pancha Samskaram, we are taught some Guru Paramparai slokas, Taniyans (meaning invocatory verses) and Mantras. We are also later provided with a booklet that contains these slokas and mantras. The Guru Paramparai slokas and Taniyans are invovatory verses that tell about the greatness about each Acharyan in the Guru Paramparai. Its starts with Sriman Narayanan and continues till our present Acharyan. 

The Guru Paramparai Slokams till those of Swamy Ramanuja are common to all. After that, they differ depending on our Acharyan since there are 74 Simhasanadhipathis.  We can take the help of fellow Sri Vaishnavas to learn these slokas and mantras. It is a must to recite these slokams and Taniyans before Thiruvaradhanam. 

Please refer to Sarathy Thothadri Swamy's article on Guru Paramparai Thanians.

Acharyan Taniyan
Every slokam/taniyan for an Acharyan is composed by his Sishyan in the Guru Paramparai. Our Acharyan also has a Taniyan and Vazhi Thirunamam (meaning benedictory verses praising and wishing good for Acharyan). These are also included in the booklet provided by our Acharyan.

Acharyan Taniyan needs to be recited everyday before Thiruvaradhanam and when consuming Acharyan's Sri Pada Teertham (meaning holy water obtained by washing Acharyan's holy feet). Acharyan Vazhi Thirunamam should be recited in front of Acharyan and after Thiruvaradhanam.

The only way to know if a person is a Sri Vaishnavan is by asking him to quote his Acharyan Taniyan. There is an interesting incident relating to this. 

Once when Swamy Ramanuja was climbing on his way to Thirumalai along with his tired and hungry Sishyas, Srinivasan - the ruling Perumal of Thirumalai came in the form of a small boy offering them prasAdam (meaning food offered to Perumal). But Swamy Ramanuja did not accept it immediately. He asked the boy who his Acharyan was. The boy replied that AnanthazwAn, a sishyan of Swamy Ramanuja, was his Acharyan. 

Immediately, Swamy Ramanuja asked the boy to tell his Acharyan Taniyan as proof. Perumal composed a 2-line Taniyan for AnanthazwAn. Swamy Ramanuja and his Sishyas inspected the Taniyan and found that though it spoke well of AnanthazwAn, it did not mention anything about Swamy Ramanuja! They grew suspicious.

Every Taniyan talks about the Acharyan as well as this Acharyan's Acharyan. Perumal now had a tough time for He was totally unprepared for this. He quickly composed the next 2-lines of the Taniyan mentioning Swamy Ramanuja. The Taniyan was now convincing. Swamy Ramanuja and his Sishyas accepted the prasadam from the boy and ate it. How much role does the Acharyan Taniyan play!!