An Ode to our Guru

On Friday, May 29, 2015, we will be celebrating our Guru Sri Vimarshananda Nathendra Saraswathi Swamigal's 113th Vardhanthi in the morning and chanting Devi Mahatmyam that evening. To mark this auspicious occasion, we would like to share the following ode to our Guru written by Sri Ramakrishna Dikshithar, poorvashrama son of our Guru Sri Vimarshananda Nathendra Saraswathi Swamigal.

Early years

Sri Vimarshananda Nathendra Saraswati Mahaswamigal, who was known as S. Rengasamy Dikshithar before he took Sanyasa, was born in May 1902 in Krishnapuram, a village in Tamil Nadu, India. He started studying the Vedas from the age of 8 in a traditional Pathashala under the direct guidance of Sri Ramanatha Ghanapadigal, a knowledgeable and reputed Vedic scholar of that period. After completion of his Vedic studies in the Pathashala, he was trained in all the Vedic rituals, including grand Yagnas like the Soma Yaga, which is ordained in the Karma Kanda of the Vedas.    

At the age of 30, he was initiated into Sri Vidya Upasana Marga by his father Shri Prakashanandanatha, who thus became his Diksha Guru.

Sri Vidya Upasana

Belonging to the reputed and illustrious Suthamalli Guru Parampara of towering masters, it is no wonder that our Guru Sri Vimarshananda Natha is a great master of masters in Sri Vidya Upasana. He also excelled in the Vedic discipline - a benchmark that separates other Sri Vidya traditions from ours. Tantric texts and doctrines are essentially based on Vedas and as such they derive their authority from Vedas. Unless you are conversant with Vedic lore, you cannot fully appreciate the Tantric practices or the values and truths stated therein. Having been proficient in both Vedic & Tantric Systems, our Guru was able to teach correct practices for various religious rites and functions covering a wide spectrum of activities like Pooja, Yagna, Japa and Parayana of various Deities.

He initiated numerous people on Sri Vidya Mantra and it is to his credit that he adopted a flexible and practical attitude to prescribe procedures to practice Sri Vidya Upasana depending upon the temperament , competency, capability, attitude and aptitude of the followers. In fact, rigidity and inflexibility in earlier times made it almost impossible to have access to Sri Vidya Upasana. 

He was a perfectionist who always insisted on 100% dedication and commitment. He insisted on correct intonation and pronunciation while reciting Vedas or chanting religious texts. He taught orally the essential Vedic texts, Upanishads, Sri Lalitha Sahasranama, Lalitha Trisati and other related Devi Stotras, Chandi Saptashati Parayana and other essential mantras to his disciples in a most authentic manner. 

He performed Sri Vidya Upasana in all its gross, subtle and transcendental forms for a continuous uninterrupted period of 65 years from the age of 30. He performed Chakra Sadhana as prescribed in Nityashodashikarnava Tantra. The Chakra Sadhana involves nine months of uninterrupted Sri Chakra Pooja and Sri Vidya Mantra Japa in its most detailed format. He strictly followed rigorous injunctions and prohibitions per instructions from his Guru. This is a rare feat for any Sri Vidya Upasaka of repute. This made him a Siddha Purusha and conferred him all psychic, occult and supernatural powers.

Establishing Bhaskara Prakasha Ashram

He established Bhaskara Prakasha Ashram as a mark of respect, recognition, remembrance and reverence to the Great Tantrikacharya Sri Bhaskararaya who is considered  the incarnation of Supreme Mother Goddess Herself, and his Guru Sri Prakashananda Natha.

He performed and conducted countless Sri Vidya Homams and Chandi Yagnas in many parts of India and initiated numerous people into the path of Sri Vidya Upasana Marga. He conducted the Sahasra Chandi Maha Yagna four times in his Ashram. He performed “Trishati Brahmana Bhojanam,” which involved honouring, propitiating, feeding and worshiping 300 Brahmins by invoking in them the 300 names of Supreme Mother Goddess mentioned in “Lalitha Trishati Stotra” just prior to his taking Sanyasa in February 1982.

He published many books on daily rituals & worship of Sri Chakra. He is instrumental in publishing an authentic Tamil translation of the commentaries on Shakta Upanishads by Sri Bhaskararaya; namely, Tripuropanishad, Bhavanopanishad and Kaulopanishad. As we consider Sri Bhaskararaya an authority on all matters concerning Sri Vidya Upasana, our Guru adopted and propagated many of his practical application manuals to his disciples. He practiced and taught Bhavanopanishad Prayoga Vidhi written by Bhaskararaya as a daily ritual of Sri Vidya Upasana. The importance of the “Bhavanopanishad Prayoga Vidhi” cannot be overstated because this is the ultimate transcendental (Bhavana) aspect of Sri Vidya Upasana.

Our Guru always stressed the importance of doing Japa, Nyasa, Parayana, reciting Lalitha Sahasranama Stotra,Trishati stotra, chanting Upanishads ,Vedic texts like Sri Rudra, Chamaka, Purusha Sukta, Sri Sukta, Sri Chandi Parayana and Bhavanopanishad Prayoga Vidhi as a daily routine for Sri Vidya Upasana. The following audio music albums released by Bhaskara Prakasha Ashram have been dedicated to the lotus feet of Sri Sri Vimarshananda Nathendra Saraswathi Swamigal:

  • Lalitha Sahasranama Parayanakrama consisting of Lalitha Sahasranamam, Lalitha Trisati, Devi Vaibhava Ashcharya Astottaram, Devi Stuti set to beautiful ragas in Carnatic Music by Sri Vimarshananda Nathendra Saraswathi Swamigal and his Poorvashrama brother Sri K.S.Kameswaran. The album also includes Sri Vidya Mantra Keertana composed by Sri Muthuswami Dikshithar.
  • Upanishad consisting of Taitreeya Upanishad, Ganapathi Upanishad, Devi Upanishad, Bhavanopanishad, Tripuropanishad, Kaulopanishad and Mandukya Upanishad.
  • Guru Puja consisting of Bhavanopanishad Prayoga Vidhi, Sundari Garbhita Purusha Suktam and Sri Suktam.

As part of his 113th Jayanti celebrations, we offer our prayers at the feet of our Guru by conducting Sahasra Chandi Maha Yagna in Canada.  

॥श्रीसद्गुरुचरणारविन्दाभ्यां नमः॥

॥श्रीमच्चरणवैभवायै नमः॥ 

Written by Sri Ramakrishna Dikshithar, poorvashrama son of our Guru Sri Vimarshananda Nathendra Saraswathi