EXCLUSIVE: The Monk who rode a Lion to Delhi
-> T.S. VENKATESAN
Much before QueenAhalyabai Holkar the Madurai Adheenam representative Kumara Guruparar built the KedarGhat in Kashi and renovated the abode of Kedhareshvarar which was earlier ruined due to the religious intolerants.
Recently Prime Minister Modi dedicated to the nation the Kashi Viswanath Dham Corridar at Varanashi. In 500-508 CE , a temple was built during the reign of Vainya Gupta. It was partly demolished by Mohammad Ghori Qutb al din Aibak and was reconstructed by Iltutmish . The temple was demolished and rebuilt in many times. Abhilyabai Holkar renovated and constructed the temple in 1776-78. Work for construction of Kashi Viswanath Dham corridor began in March 2019.
Kumaraguru Paraswamigal a disciple of Śrī-la-Śrī Masilamani desigar of the fourth head of the renowned mutt of the Saiva Siddhantha tradition called Thirukkayilaya Paramparai Dharumapura Adhinam. He was the founder of Thiruppananthal Adheenam which is also known as Kashi Mutt.. According to Shaivam.org , “his parents from Srivaikundam in Tirunelveli district, Shanmukha Sikhamani Kavirayar and Sivakami Ammaiyar were blessed with a male child in 1625 A.D. after a long penance to Muruga of Tiruchendur. The boyuntil his fifth year could not speak. After a long wait seeing signs of approaching speech, his e parents decided to end their lives in the sea along with the child if he would not speak by a particular day.
All the three went deeper and deeperwere about to sink with the waves over their heads, a human form appeared with a flower in his hand and asked the child what it was; all in a surprise the child broke out in praise of the Lord with the words; “Poomevu senggamalap…” the opening lines of Kandar Kalivenba ( a hymn on Lord Murugan. With guru’s blessings and to fulfil his advice, young Kuaragurubarar undertook pilgrimage to Kashi in 1685 AD”.
The site says “ at that time, Dara Shuko was the ruler of the Varanasi province of the Moghul empire. Aurangazeb the most intolerant of the Moghul lineage was ruling at Delhi. Dara was an exceptional one in the Moghuls. He was tolerant enough to seek what the other religions have to say and encouraged discussions among the religions.
He is said to have translated some of the Upanisads into Persian language. This was a long time before the successive Muslim invaders ruined the holy city of Kasi and demolished the abode of Lord Vishvanathar. At this point of time there was a critical urge to keep alive the spirituality of the suppressed Hindus” .
The blessed Saint Kumaragurupara, who had the valiance of the spirituality, rode over a lion and went majestically into the court of Dara Shuko, who realized his spiritual power. The King and others impressed by the dare devilry of the Tamil saint and his vast knowledge. The king showed his respect to the saint and asked him what he needed from him. He asked the king to provide land in Kashi where he could build a mutt and serve Saivism. The saint wanted to renovate the Kedareshvara Swami Temple at the Kedhar Ghat.The king gave the option of the place to the saint himself. Saint said there would be a kite (Flagon) that would fly above the spot, whatever be the area that it circuits in the sky, that should be given to him to build a mutt. The kite (the carrier of Lord Vishnu) appeared in the sky and marked the area that included the Kedhareshvarar Temple and the land for building a mutt. He spoke to Dara shuko in Persian language and convinced him the importance of Varanasi for the Hindus.
The Muslim King happily gave that land.Kumaraguruparar renovated the abode of Kedhareshvarar which was earlier ruined due to the religious intolerants. In the Kumaraswamy Mutt that he built, he guided the people in the glory of Saivite philosophy. His inspiring teachings paved way for the restoration of the highly adored Lord Viswanatha temple. The devotees offered tons of valuables to the saint. He took them to his guru at Dharmapuram.
But Desikar refused to take them and asked him to spend those for the spiritual development of the people of Kashi. Kumaraguruparar spent the materials in spreading the message of Saivism.He stayed in Kashi for 30 years from 1658 to 1688 spreading the glory of Shaivism giving the vital support to the Hinduism that needed support during those troubled periods. He attained Samadhi at Kashi on the third day after full moon day in May 1688.
His vital services for the sustenance of Hinduism will be remembered along with his beautiful compositions by the generations of devotees.Amongst Kumarakuruparar’s other literary works, Meenakshi Pillai-Tamil, Meenakshi-kurram, Neethineri-Vilakkami Madhuraikkalampakam and others are ever popular and widely read.
Saint Kumaraguruparar also popularized Kamba Ramayana in Kashi and Tulsidas, inspired by this ,wrote Ramayana in Hindi , in common man’s language as Ramcharitra Manas.
It would be a fitting to the Tamil saint, a marble statue to be erected in Kashi remembering his yeomen service in spreading the Hinduism during Aurangazep regime valiantly.