Significance of Rudraksha in THE SPH’s life

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Around 1991, THE SPH also visited one of the great gurus of Tiruvannamalai- Kripananda Variyar Swamigal.

I can say he is my Tamil guru. I learned Tamil by listening to his speeches. Kripananda Variyar Swamigal’s devotion was such that even underarms, he wore a rudraksha by piercing! He was wearing a rudraksha.

There is a story where Subramanya directly comes down and corrects a great lady saint, Avvai, her understanding. He teaches her and liberates her, giving her enlightenment by giving her a critical understanding. She has become a little egoistic about her knowledge, and Subramanya directly comes down and removes her ego makes her understand, and gives her enlightenment.

So, he (Kripananda Variyar) exclaimed, ‘Just like you did for Avvai, did you come again to give the truth to me?’ addressing SPH, who to him was Muruga himself.

SPH was just a twelve-year-old boy. , he smiled and walked out of the room. Till THE SPH left the hall, Kripananda Variyar Swamigal was sitting like that only with folded hands, looking after the retreating figure of THE SPH with so much devotion. Only after SPH left the room he continued giving vibhuti.

This wooden box was the young Avatar’s father’s cash box. He took it and used it. The Rudraksha bead string inside it was given to Him by Kripananda Variyar, a great spiritual teacher from Tamilnadu, South India.

My gurus put glittering jewels along with the rudraksha and I straight away picked the rudraksha! I will tell you this one incident; only then will you understand the concept of God as a deity.

My guru Kuppammal (Mata Vibhudananda Puri) had the whole guru parampara deity, which was given from Arunagiri Yogishwara’s time.

When Isakki Swami was about to leave the body, he could not do puja every day, so he handed it over to Kuppammal, and she was doing puja for it every day. One day, she asked me to clean the deity. I cleaned all the rudraksha and kept everything separate. She asked where everything was – the Rudraksha and other jewels on the deity.

I said, “I cleaned everything and kept it aside.”

She said, “Our ancestors gave this to us. So we don’t know whether the deity is god decorated with rudraksha or the rudraksha is god put on a stand called deity, so we should never do this game of separation! as they gave it, put it together, tie it and keep it and do puja!”

God! The kind of sincerity she has inculcated in me!

After His first enlightenment experience, THE SPH began going on pada yantras, sometimes just by Himself and other times with bands of people who would come along. From 1991 until 1993, THE SPH went on several trips to Sabarimala – the temple dedicated to Lord Ayyappa.

Many people, including THE SPH’s brothers, uncles, and paternal grandmother, have shared sweet memories of traveling with THE SPH to Sabarimala. They remember how THE SPH was so alive and overjoyed, taking every opportunity to educate the people with him, even leading blissful songs, or bhajans, while they were walking or on the bus. This is much like how THE SPH led hundreds of people on Yatras to the Himalayas and Kailash.

Sabarimala is a prominent Hindu temple on a hilltop in Kerala’s Pathanamthitta district. It is surrounded by 18 hills in the Periyar Tiger Reserve. The temple is dedicated to Ayyappa, the God of growth. The temple attracts pilgrims from Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, and various parts of the country and the world. It mainly was unreachable for about three centuries after its installation.

Maheshwara Puja is specially Designed to:

In the 12th century, a prince of the Pandalam Dynasty, Manikandan, rediscovered the original path to Sabarimala. He had many followers with him, including the descendants of the Vavar (a Muslim warrior whom Manikandan defeated) family. This Prince is considered an Avatar of Ayyappa. It is believed that he meditated at Sabarimala temple and became one with the divine.

The pilgrims of Sabarimala have to reach the temple through challenging treks in the forest as the vehicles cannot reach there. Devotees have to observe celibacy for 48 days before going to Sabarimala. They are also required to strictly follow a vegetarian diet, refrain from alcohol, not use profanity, and allow their hair and nails to grow without cutting. They are expected to bathe twice daily and visit the local temples regularly. They wear black or blue clothes, do not shave until the completion of the pilgrimage, and smear vibhuti or sandal paste on their forehead.

Sabarimala beads

This is one of the strings of beads that the young Avatar wore during His pilgrimage trips to Sabarimala, a hill-top temple in Kerala visited by lakhs of devotees by foot after a 48-day austere lifestyle before the pilgrimage. He went twice with His elder brother and father’s elder brother Kumarasamy Periappa as a larger group of people in 1989 and 1990. The third time was when He went with His paternal grandmother Anusuya Ammal in 1991, and they visited several other essential temples as well. The dollar in this string is Lord Ayyappan, the presiding deity of Sabarimala. It was customary to wear two strings every year.

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