An endearing orator

Srivatsa Jayarama Sarma   | Photo Credit: B_Velankanni Raj

Upanyasaka Srivatsa Jayarama Sarma, who passed away recently, was remembered at a recent event, organised by his nephew and film director T.S.B.K. Mouli and his brother S.B. Khantan. Justice Ramasubramaniam who had been his disciple since his school days recalled his experiences. Particularly moving was the fact that Jayarama Sarma refused to call him by name once he was elevated as the Justice of The High Court. Religious orators Sukhi Sivam and Damal Ramakrishnan were eloquent about his generous nature and the way they were encouraged by him as youngsters. His disciple R.B.S. Manian mentioned that he was blessed to have him as his guru, for he was always a willing teacher. A video recording of his lecture on ‘Bhaja Govindam’ was played as part of the function.

Srivatsa Jayarama Sarma’s discourses on Narayaneeyam, Ramayanam and other religious subjects were well attended. He propounded Adi Sankara’s ‘Bhaja Govindam’ with practical examples, which made it easy to understand. This endeared him to listeners.

As a school boy, I have attended his lectures at Ayodhya Mandapam. The patience with which he would answer listeners’ questions after his discourse was something to marvel at. He would also pepper his discourse with jokes which made listening enjoyable.

Srivatsa Jayarama Sarma passed away on November 24, 2015, and it went unnoticed due to the heavy rains that battered the city during that period and even afterwards.

Jayarama Sarma had a Masters in History and Economics from the Annamalai University. His father Srivatsa Somadeva Sarma taught children Sanskrit, slokas and Upanishads through his ‘gurukulam’ at West Mambalam of which Jayarama Sarma was also a part. He was encouraged to read a lot, particularly the works of Kalidasa.

Inspired by the Narayaneeyam discourse of doyen Anantharama Dikshitar, he started studying it in depth. An impromptu lecture at the kumbabishekam of a local temple at Kadavasal, Sirkazhi, was the beginning.

Anantharama Dikshitar, encouraged Jayarama Sarmato give discourses, without it interfering with his work at the postal department, where he was employed. When he was promoted and transferred to Bhopal, he continued his lectures in English, which earned him fame in North India too.

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Printable version | Jan 24, 2022 9:44:35 AM |

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