Gifts from Kailasa

From the details of Adi Sankara’s life culled from the Sankara Vijayam, it is clear that he is the greatest acharya in our tradition who achieved phenomenal success within a short span of 32 years. Believed to be the very incarnation of Siva, he has revived and established the Vedic tradition at a time when it was under threat of getting eclipsed by many opposing faiths. He travelled through the length and breadth of the country, arguing and winning against each of them with extraordinary ingenuity.

In a discourse, Sri B. Sundarkumar drew attention to his visit to Kailasa when he meets Siva and Parvati to get their direct blessings. Siva gives him the five lingams to be taken to earth to enable worship by the people. Ambal gives him the manuscript of the grantha Saundarya Lahari, a unique composition of Siva on the Goddess. When he comes out of Kailasa, Nandi snatches by force a part of the manuscript from his hands. Upset at his lack of care, he wonders why such a thing has happened. Ambal comes out and smilingly commands him to complete the rest.

Judging by the calibre of the esoteric truths in the first 41 verses in acharya’s hands, one can imagine the depth, subtlety and sanctity of the remaining section of the hymn. Perhaps the world was yet not fully qualified to grasp it and Nandi’s interception was ordained by divine will so that Adi Sankara could be motivated to compose the sequel to what Siva had begun. But for their divine grace, he would not have had the courage to accomplish this task. It is like how a king would infuse confidence in the prince who hesitates to take up the mantle, though efficient and capable. He would first send him on a challenging mission, say establish peace in a turbulent area and then entrust the place in his care.

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Printable version | May 7, 2021 7:18:43 AM |

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