History of Sri Vyasatatvajna Teertharu – Part 1/n

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History of Sri Vyasatatvajna Teertharu – Part 1/n

Introduction

There is a reason why Devatas(Gods) incarnate in Bhooloka. For it is the karmabhoomi from where the saadhana yields maximum fruition. It is said that alpa aadhyatmika sadhana (minimal spiritual achievements) in kaliyuga bears ananta phala (infinite fruit) which act as a catalyst towards mukti (liberation).

Notably, many celestial deities have taken birth as a maanusha(human being) particularly in the lineage of Jagadguru Shri Madhwacharya’s parampara. As Shri Madhwacharya is the incarnation of Vayu, it is only apt for the celestial beings beneath Vayu to incarnate in the same Parampara(lineage) to disseminate the tattvavaada. They have the capacity of Aparoksha Jnaana either by birth or by Spiritual atonement. Shree Vyaasatattwajna Teertharu of Venisompuram is one among many celestial deities to have incarnated in the Madhwa lineage. He is the incarnate of Drishtadyumna(Agni devataamsha) who was the commander-in-chief of the Pandavas’ army. Born in 1704 as Shri Ieji Venkataramacharya to the great scholar Vidwan Ieji Venkatanarasimhacharya, Venkataramacharya in his initial years was a pretend playful toddler. Shri Gopaladasaru recognized the boy’s innate capabilities and blessed him to be a great scholar. True to those words, the playful characteristics of Venkataramacharya diminished once his brahmopadesha (thread ceremony) was performed. He carried out nitya agnikaarya whilst learning all the 4 shastras that was taught to him by his father with due diligence. As extolled in Upanishads: “svaadhyaayaanma pramadaha …….. taddhi tapastaddhi tapaha”, Ieji Venkataramacharya had infinite patience in gaining the advanced knowledge of Nyaaya, Vyakarana, Poorva Meemamsa and Uttara Meemamsa(Vedanta) through continuous practice and svaadhyaya thereby earning the title of “Chattushshaastrapandita” at a very young age. At a suitable age, he got married and settled down in Ieji.

Patronage under Gadwal Kingdom

Ieji Shri Venkataramacharya used to practice nitya agnihotra(process of giving aahuti to agni) austerities along with the daily pooja-aahneeka rituals. As the sanatana dharma requires the guru shishya parampara to be continued, Ieji Shri Venkataramacharya(Ieji Acharya) used to teach the 4 pillars of schools of thoughts which are the 4 shastras as mentioned previously to more than 300 students and disciples. Gadwal, also called ‘Vidvadgadwala’, was ruled by Pedda Soma Bhoopaludu (Somanadri) during that period. The king held high regards towards the family of scholars from Ieji since he had seen first hand how the scholars from other schools such as Adwaita and Vishishtadwaita suffered defeat at the hands of Ieji Acharya and his disciples and emerged victorious during the scholarly debates that the king used to organize in his court. One such debate is the debate between the disciple of Ieji Acharya – Shri Kalluru Bhimacharya and an Adwaitin scholar. The debate was supposedly unending when Kalluru Bhimacharya quoted the words of Ieji Acharya from his famed grantha – “Drakshapaaka”. Apparently, the Adwaitin scholar gave up and pronounced Kalluru Bhimacharya, the disciple of Ieji Acharya victorious.  The king had reserved the famous attardaan and paandaan ceremonies to be received first by the Ieji acharya and his family which was last carried out as recent as 1943.

Beechupalli Mukhyaprana’s blessings:

Shri Mukhyaprana ordained Ieji Acharya to perform sevas at the divine Beechupalli Kshetra(15 kms from Gadwal) on the banks of Krishna river. Shri Ieji Acharya decided to follow the orders of Shri Mukhyaprana and thereby moved to stay and perform 12 years of rigorous penance along with nitya paatha pravachana at the holy kshetra of Beechupalli. The Lord bestowed Ieji Acharya with Haridaasaankita – “Vaasudeva vitthala” as a fruit of the good deeds. Shri Ieji Acharya composed many Suladis, Ugabhogas & Haridasa Sankeertanas using the said Ankita.

to be continued…

Pushkar Parthakudi
Pushkar Parthakudi
Divangata (Late) Shri Ieji Shreenivasacharya is a Shiromani scholar from Shri Venkateshwara Oriental Research Institute, Tirupati. He is anuvamshika in Ieji Acharya's lineage.He served as an Adhyapaka at Shri Gurusarvabhouma Vidyapeetha. The translation is carried out by the author's maternal grandson Shri Pushkara Parthakudi, Bengaluru

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