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  1. #11
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    Jayendra Saraswathi: An Acharya with a difference
    By S. Gurumurthy

    Jayendra Saraswathi, the direct disciple of the Mahaswami, was particularly distinct from his predecessor in almost every respect. Being more contemporary than traditional, he often tested the limits of orthodoxy and extended the areas of the Math’s reach and influence

    Jayendra Saraswathi Swami, the 69th Shankaracharya of the famous Kanchi Kamakoti Peetham, who attained samadhi on Wednesday was an Acharya different in comparison to his peers in the pantheon of Shankaracharyas. He was particularly distinct from his predecessor and Guru, Chandrashekarendra Saraswathi, popularly known as the Kanchi Mahaswami, in almost every respect. Jayendra Saraswathi was even controversial because of the risky territories he traversed that were never unravelled to him in the training he had received in the innocent surroundings at the Math.

    Guru-Sishya contrast


    The Kanchi Math, rebuilt from scratch by the Mahaswami, attained the most revered status among all Maths in the country and the Mahaswami was revered as the walking Divinity. An epitome of modesty and simplicity, his calmness and silence attracted millions to him. The tallest intellectuals, the mightiest leaders and the most respected men and women from all walks of life queued up for his darshan and to hear his profound words. Even his detractors were silenced by the power of his calmness and quietude. The Math reached its pinnacle under his stewardship. Jayendra Saraswathi, the direct disciple of the Mahaswami, was almost a contrast.
    If the Mahaswami was silent, Jayendra was outspoken. If his Guru was inner directed, Jayendra was outgoing. If the Mahaswami walked, Jayendra motored, even flew. If the Guru avoided fame, the disciple enjoyed it. If the Mahaswami immersed in contemplation with self, Jayendra involved in conversation with the world. This contrast did create a situation in 1988, when Jayendra Saraswathi, piqued by some in the Math not accepting the culture change he was bringing about, left the Math without informing anyone suddenly. It shook the Math and its millions of followers. Though he returned after calming himself, the incident demonstrated his trans-traditional impulses.

    Unchartered territories


    The calm, quiet and inward-looking Math and its grammar changed into one of high pulse and activity under Jayendra Saraswathi’s leadership after the Mahaswami attained siddhi in 1994. Being more contemporary than traditional, Jayendra Saraswathi often tested the limits of orthodoxy and extended the areas of the Math’s reach and influence beyond its traditional adherents even as he explored areas of social thrust. He was instrumental in the Kanchi Math expanding directly into people’s service and not remaining merely a spiritual fountainhead as it was under the Mahaswami.

    Today, the Kanchi Math runs a deemed university and dozens of schools and hospitals — territories previously not in the reach of Math — besides over 50 traditional Vedic schools and temples. Jayendra broke the restraining rules of the Math and reached out to the downtrodden. He went to Harijan bastis and attracted thousands of new followers and devotees. He transformed a spiritual and ritualistic Math into a socially vibrant one. This brought him high popularity and also into interaction with a multitude of social and political leaders in the country. It had had its pluses and minuses.

    Arrest and vicious atmosphere


    Jayendra Saraswathi’s independent course provoked some elements in the Math to fault him for deviating from the celebrated traditions. This led to an uncomplimentary campaign against him and the murder of one of the dissenters. In a state where Hinduism has borne the burden of unjust assault at the hands of the Dravida Kazhagam and its offshoots, political parties and others found it opportune to attack Jayendra, finally leading his arrest.

    This sparked a nationwide uproar, but in Tamil Nadu, a vicious campaign was carried by political parties, intellectuals, activists and even the media against the Math and the Acharya. The New Indian Express alone gave the other side view and carried five counter-investigation articles [authored by me]. The first article titled As the Shankaracharya stands like Abhimanyu [NIE 23.11.2004] captured how the Dravidian political and secular media in the state were hounding the hapless Acharya, who was stung and stunned by the heinous charge against him. The third one titled The case is dead. Who’ll do the funeral, and when, exposed the frivolous prosecution. An angry government ordered my arrest and even the bail available to any accused was denied to the Acharya by the Magistrate and Sessions Court and by the Madras High Court. Finally, he had to get bail from the Supreme Court! Even the junior Acharya was arrested.

    Read more at: http://www.newindianexpress.com/opin...e-1780389.html
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    Jayendra Saraswathi interred at Kanchi Mutt; Governor, ministers attend ceremony



    The body of the seer was lowered in the sitting posture into a large bamboo basket

    Jayendra Saraswathi, the 69th pontiff of the Kanchi Mutt, was on Thursday buried in the Brindhavan annexe in the premises of the religious establishment here with Vedic honours.

    Amid chants, the body of the 82-year-old was lowered in the sitting posture into a large bamboo basket that had been placed inside the 7 ft x 7 ft burial pit in the annexe.

    The pit was filled with herbs like 'Vasambu,' salt, sandalwood and sand.

    Marking the conclusion of the ceremony which lasted for about three and a half hours beginning 7.45 am, a grand aarti was performed, with Tamil Nadu Governor Banwarilal Purohit also in attendance.


    To read more click here
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    Swamigal will be remembered for taking the Math on a new trajectory which was viewed non traditional but was the need of the hour!
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    Auditor Gurmurthy's article ( posted above ) gives an excellent balanced view of the life of Kanchi Seer Sri Jayendra Saraswathi .
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  8. #15
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    hi

    jaya jaya shakara...hara hara shankara....sankara netralaya.....need of the hour..
    asato maa sadh gamayaa, tamaso maa jyotir
    gamayaa, mrityor maa amritham gamayaaa..
    om shanti, om shanti, om shanti...upanishad
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    He will be heading the Mutt hereafter and shall be spreading the spiritual messages of Adi Sankara

    Sri Vijayendra Saraswathi brilliance made him the pontiff of Kanchi Mutt


    KANCHIPURAM: Decades ago, when a 13-year old boy stood up boldly at a Vedic meet held at the Kanchi Sankara Mutt here to correct the mistake of a scholar, the gathering was stunned.

    Quite naturally, the 69th pontiff Sri Jayendra Saraswathi was deeply impressed by the brilliance and knowledge of the boy over Vedic scriptures.

    On that occasion, none would have thought that the boy would one day become the head of the institution with a long tradition of disseminating spiritualism and the philosophy of Sri Adi Shankaracharya.

    The boy, from a Telugu speaking brahmin family, was later christened "Sri Sankara Vijayendra Saraswathi Swamigal," when he became the 70th acharya of the Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam on May 29, 1983.

    Since 1983 and till 1993 there were three acharyas of the Mutt at the same time.

    Till 1983 there have not been three gurus simultaneously, said T G Ganesan, a spiritual activist and devotee of the Kanchi Mutt.
    Sri Vijayendra Saraswathi was born as the eight child of a vedic scholar, M Krishnamoorthy and Ambalakshmi couple in 1969.

    Named Sankara Narayanan, he was a native of village Thandalam in Tiruvallur District and was born in Arni in Tiruvannamalai District.
    After attending school till class five, he joined a Veda Patashala and soon after he displayed a deep understanding and knowledge of the scriptures.

    "When Sri Vijayendra pointed out that mistake boldly as a young boy, Sri Jayendra Saraswathi was deeply impressed.


    Read more at: http://www.newindianexpress.com/stat...t-1780716.html
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  12. #17
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    With different world view......
    Jayendra Saraswathi redefined Kanchi Mutt’s role – but did not earn the stature of his predecessor


    To his credit, though, he was a self-made man, who built his own identity and a set of devoted believers.

    From the very moment Jayendra Saraswathi was anointed as the 69th pontiff of the Kanchi Kamakoti Mutt, succeeding Chandrasekharendra Saraswathi, he was put on the back foot. His predecessor was no ordinary religious leader. He was revered as an “avatara purusha, a seer, a realised Vedantin, someone who had transcended the temporal realm. Stories of his insight and clairvoyance were part of Brahmin smarta folklore. His disciples and followers came from across the world and consisted of the who’s who of India’s cultural and political nobility. It would not be wrong to say that everyone saw in him a realised soul. He might not have been a mystic of the order of Ramana Maharishi, but he was considered by most as a modern day saint. It was under his leadership that the Kanchi Kamakoti Mutt achieved spiritual significance.

    Jayendra Saraswathi thus had to contend with comparisons from the word go. He seemed to have a very different worldview from his guru. Jayendra Saraswathi saw in himself a socio-religious leader. To him, being a pontiff was not just about performing his everyday ritual duties and spreading the word of Shankara to the already dedicated and established Brahmin audience. He saw a larger role for himself, as a propagator of Hinduism, beyond the upper caste belt. There is no doubt that Chandrasekharendra Saraswathi worked within the boundaries that his organisation and identity had set. If others came in, they did so of their own accord; it was not his work to take Advaita to everyone. By just being who he was and performing his duty as the acharya, he believed people would come into the Mutt.


    To read more click here
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