Faith

Acharya parampara

Every generation derives its spiritual strength from the tradition it has inherited and is also responsible to preserve it without distortion and hand it down to posterity. For a majority of us, the Vedas are the basis of our faith and belief. The Vedas are apaurusheya and are believed to be the very breath of the Supreme Brahman. They are the authority for knowing about Brahman, the world and our own selves and how each of these has a bearing on each other, pointed out Asuri Sri Madhavachariar in a discourse.

There are both believers and non-believers in the Vedas since ancient times and this has given rise to many schools of thought. So, some are based on the Vedas, and also many are opposed to the tenets of the Vedas. Even among those that accept the Vedas, there exist different streams such as Dvaita, Advaita, Visishtadvaita, and so on. Adi Sankara has evolved the Advaita system and Madhvacharya the Dvaita system of thought. The Visishtadvaita philosophy has been propagated by Ramanuja and it is based on the Vaishnava sampradaya which reveres Lord Narayana and Goddess Sri together as the primordial acharya. To establish this philosophy, Ramanuja had to overcome many hurdles, for, at that time, several opposing faiths prevailed.

Ramanuja derived the inspiration and grace of Alavandar, who had received the tradition from his grandfather Nathamuni and his sishyas. Ramanuja built this philosophy from the foundation laid by Alavandar. It is held that Nathamuni was a great yogi, and he propitiated Nammazhwar, believed to be an amsa of Vishvaksena. Pleased by Nathamuni’s resolute penance, Nammazhwar imparted to him the Nalayira Divya Prabandha tradition that is hailed as the Tamizh Veda. Ramanuja’s disciples lived up to its high standards and their disciples down the line have displayed tremendous commitment to preserve and protect the tradition and to inspire faith in people to seek the feet of the Lord.


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Printable version | Jul 18, 2022 6:34:19 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/society/faith/acharya-parampara/article65654272.ece