Pi¬¬ai Lokåcårya | Karma | Indian Religions

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  Pillai Lokacharya's ,one of the Acharyas in the SriVaishnava sampradaya . his greatest work is Sri VachanaBushanam. THis is a english translataion, Summary. (Source : From the web at Srimatham.com)
  1  Introduction s Pi¬¬ai-lokåcårya [1264-1369 AD] fter the death of Srî Råmånuja, Paråçara Bha††a (Born 1074 AD) continued thework of propagating Viçi߆ådvaita philosophy, and he was succeeded in turn byNañjiyar. Nañjiyar’s foremost disciple was Nam-pi¬¬ai (Kali-vairi-dåsa) whowas gifted with such deep erudition and expository skills, that he was given the title of 'Lokåcårya'. Nam-pi¬¬ai who was resident in Srîraºgam had a very studious disciple bythe name of Srî K®ß±a-påda who did not wish to get married, but his mother foiled hisplans to remain a bachelor by arranging his marriage at a very early age to a girlnamed Sri-raºga-nåcchiyår. He was studying under Nam-pi¬¬ai and was engaged indocumenting all the teachings.After a year of marriage, Srî K®ß±a-påda’s mother complained to his Guru Nam-pi¬¬aithat her son was not consumating the marriage and thus there was no progeny. Nam-pi¬¬ai admonished his student to follow the dictates of his mother. After muchprocrastinating he finally did the deed and thus Pi¬¬ai Lokåcårya was born in the Krodhana year, Aippasi month under the constellation of Sråva±a-nakßatracorresponding to 1264 AD. He is known to have lived for 105 years. He named hisson after his own Guru —  Lokåcårya. After another three years, K®ß±a-påda hadanother son and named him after the Lord of Srîraºgam — Ramya-jåmåt® Deva(A¬agiya Ma±avå¬a Perumå¬ Nåyanår). Both the boys also studied under Nam-pi¬¬ai.One day a friend of Sri K®ß±a-påda happened to remark that had he not been forced tomarry, he would never have had the great fortune of presenting to the world twogenius sons for the propagation of the Srîvaiß±ava Dharma. Srî K®ß±a-påda grudginglyagreed but affirmed that Hanumån and Bhîßma — the eternal bachelors were still hisideal role-models and had he been given a choice, he would have chosen a celibatelife. The two boys overheard this conversation, and they there and then resolvednever to marry but to dedicate their lives to propagating the teachings of the Dharma tothe common-folk with unswerving devotion, dedication and determination.After the passing away of Nam-pi¬¬ai and Sri K®ß±a-påda, the Vaiß±avas gatheredaround Pi¬¬ai-lokåcårya for instruction and guidance. Pi¬¬ai-lokåcårya who preferred asolitary and tranquil residence moved to a temple of Lord Narasiµha in the outskirts of Srîraºgam and it was here that he delivered discourses on Dharma to all who would A  2 listen. He taught in a very simple and skilful manner which is reflected in hiswritings.Pi¬¬ai-lokåcårya opposed all differences based upon, caste, gender, nationality etc. Heexemplified the doctrine that the universe was the body of the Lord and all beings arenecessarily a part of Him. For the true Srîvaiß±ava, the cosmos is one without anydistinction whatsoever; Lord Nåråya±a is the Father, Lakßmî the Mother — They arethe Divine Parents and all sentient beings are their children. A Vaiß±ava ought not toassess the faults of others, he should regard all with equal vision and seek the good of all beings (loka-saºgraha) and be beneficent to all.All this revolutionary Dharma activity did not go unresisted and there were many thatcomplained to Lord Raºga-nåtha through the Arcakas (priests) that Pi¬¬ai-lokåcårya wasdoing immense harm to tradition by preaching the concepts of equality and fraternityand by writing down the Secret Doctrines. When called upon to explain their conduct,A¬agiya Manavå¬a Perumå¬ Nåyanår appearing on behalf of his brother, stated that whatthey were doing was merely clarifying the Sacred Doctrines for the benefit of the lesslearned but competent disciples. Sri Raºganåtha is stated to have endorsed thisexplanation and confirmed the title 'Lokåcårya' (World Teacher) for the åcårya. Healso directed Nåyanår to compile all the statements now made into a text called 'AcåryaH®dayam' and that this text too should receive equal veneration to the works of hiselder brother.Pi¬¬ai-lokåcårya wrote 18 treatises on the Secret Doctrines of Srîvaiß±avism, all of which are available; they are:—1.    yåd®cchikap-pa¥i  2.   mumukßa-pa¥i  3.    paranda-pa¥i  4.   çriya¿-pati-pa¥i — these texts deal generally with the meaning of the three secretmantras.5.   tani-dvayam — deals in greater detail with the Dvaya-mantra.6.   tani-caramam — explicates the Carama-çloka.7.   tani-pra±avam — dilates upon the meaning of the sacred syllable AUM.8.   såra-saºgraham — another work on the Dvaya-mantra, relating it to 10 sections of the Tiru-våi-mo¬i of Nammå¬vår.9.   nåva-vidha-sambandham — in this work the åcårya attempts to relate the syllablesof the Tiru-mantra to the ninefold relationship between the Supreme Being and theWorld of sentient and insentient entities.10. tattva-trayam — a detailed explanation of the three eternal realities of the Lord,the World and the jîvas.11. artha-pañcakam — A treatise on the five fundamental doctrines:— the essentialnature of God, the nature of the jiva, means of liberation, nature of the actual goalof spiritual endeavour and the impediments in the path of its attainment.12. tattva-çekharam — a point by point refutation of other schools of thought.13. prameya-çekharam — a treatise on Divine Grace  3 14. arcirådi . — the journey of the jîva in its astral body into the world of light andbeyond.15. saµsåra-såµråjyam — deals with the turning point from the world of saµsåra tothe feet of the Lord.16. navaratna-målå  — Deals with the nine things that an aspirant must understand:himself as a total entity, his body, his relatives, other beings, gods other than LordViß±u, Srîvaiß±avas, Preceptors, Lakßmi and the Lord Himself.17.  prapanna-paritrå±am — a treatise on the qualifications and way of unconditionalsurrender to the Lord.18. çrîvacana-bhûßa±am — the crowning masterpiece dealing with all the fundamentalsof Srîvaiß±avism.Pi¬¬ai-lokåcårya wrote in 'Ma±i-pravå¬a' which is a blend of Sanskrit and Tamil andadopted the literary device of short, cryptic and pithy sentences, popularly known as'sûtras'. Thus we see that Pi¬¬ai-lokåcårya not merely describes and annotates thedoctrines of the Srîvaiß±ava tradition, but greatly dilates and elaborates on them thusearning him the title of Lokåcårya (World-Teacher) — who dedicated his life to thespiritual regeneration of humankind. ( adhyåtma -punar-ujjîvana ) .An ordinary individual caught up in worldly existence cannot protect and liberatehimself. For this he needs the aid and assistance of an åcårya. A compassionate åcårya( dayålu ) teaches the precepts and enlightens the disciples once a proper relationshiphas been established between the two ( åcårya-sambandha ). But a 'most compassionate'åcårya ( Parama-dayålu ) writes down the precepts and teachings for the benefit of allthose who cannot obtain personal contact with him because of the constraints of timeand space; and for the use of future generations as well. Pi¬¬ai-lokåcårya belongs tothis class of 'Parama-dayålu' åcåryas.When Muslims invaded the Temple at Srîraºgam, Vedånta Deçikan undertook toprotect the magnum opus of Sudarçan-suri — the çruta-prakåçika . Pi¬¬ai-lokåcårya tookupon himself the duty of protecting the sacred Icons. In spite of his advanced age andfailing health he accompanied the temple priests who taking the icons under the coverof darkness headed for the safety of Tirupati. Overcome by the hardship of the journey he resolved to rest at a cross-road and to gain time for the refugees by mis-directing the Muslim soldiers that were pursuing them. After they had realised they hadbeen misled the soldiers returned and skinned the venerable åcårya alive and left him todie in agony! He left his body on the twelfth day (Dvådaçi) of the dark fortnight(K®ß±a-pakßa.) in the month of Jye߆ha — corresponding to the year 1369 AD. VedåntaDeçikan managed to escape with the text and the two sons of Sudarçan Suri, whohimself was murdered in the temple along with all the disciples to whom he waslecturing at the time.    4 Subject Matter The work is broadly divided into four Cantos ( Prakara±as ) covering 6 categories of knowledge:—1.    purußåkåra vaibhavam (sûtras 5 — 22) elucidating the glory of the Mediatrix —the Divine Mother Mahå-lakßmî, the intercessor between the Lord and the jîvas andthe conduit of Grace.2.   sådhanasya-gauravam (sûtras 23— 70) the glorification of spiritual practice; thetaking of refuge.3.   tad-adhikåri-k®tyam (sûtras 80 — 307) the code of conduct for one who takesrefuge.4.   asya-sat-gur-upasevanam (sûtras 308 — 365) the relationship between the preceptorand the disciple.5.   hari-dayåµ-ahetukîµ (sûtras 366 — 406) the spontaneous redemptive Grace of theSupreme Lord.6.   guror-upåyatåm (sûtras 407 — 463) the role of the preceptor in helping the aspirantto cross samsåra.Another method of classifying the subject matter is to group it under 9 headings:—1.   The magnitude of Mahålakßmî’s intercession (sûtras 5 — 22)2.   The path of surrender (sûtras 23 — 114)3.   The relativity of the other means of liberation (sûtras 115 — 141)4.   The absolute reliance upon the Lord (sûtras 141 — 242)5.   The code of conduct to be followed by the Prapanna, with an understanding of Vedic teachings. (sûtras 243 — 307)6.   The qualifications of the preceptor (sûtras 308 — 320)7.   Interacting with the preceptor (sûtras 321 — 365)8.   Spontaneous Grace (sûtras 366 — 406)9.   Liberation (sûtras 407 — 463)A more detailed description of the Subject Matter is as follows:—1 — 6 Scriptural Authority.   6 — 22. Glory of the Mediatrix and the necessity for mediation.23 — 36 Taking refuge37 — 39. The theological manifestations.40 — 50. Persons are eligible to take refuge in the Icon.51 — 70. Prapatti   71 — 72. Dependence on the Lord (paratantrya) . 73 — 77. Attributes of the jîva78 — 79. Self-identity80 — 82. Upåya and self-effort.
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