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Madhurakavi Azhwar

AzhwAr Madhurakavi is the one who helped us by compiling the outpourings of NammazhwAr; Not just that, he also sang 11 beautiful "andhadhi" style pAsurams starting with "kaNNinun siRutthAmbhu..." which do not have any parallel to any other pAsuram/slOka for Acharya Bhakti. He sang these pasurams only in praise of his Acharya "nammAzhwAr" and claimed, in the end, that one can attain mOkshA certainly and definitely after reciting just these 11 pAsurams. It is also told that Nathamuni, who compiled 4000 pAsurams of AzhwArs, was blessed with a darshan of nammAzhwAr and was given a set of all 12 AzhwArs' pAsurams (by NammAzhwAr himself) after he recited Madhurakavi's 11 bhakti-laden pAsurams on nammAzhwAr 12000 times. (Brothers, that is the dynamite packed power of Madhurakavi's pAsurams). Let us ber blessed by the biography of this mahan.

Madhurakavi (meaning in sanskrit the sweet poet), a vainathEya (divine bird) incarnate, was born in the year Easwara, chitrai month and in chitrai nakshatram at ThirukkOLoor. He learnt Tamizh and sanskrit and became a great scholar in both the languages. He was a great BhaktA of Sriman Narayana and had an excellent conduct. He was on visits to the North India and obtained divya Darshans of Ayodhya, gaya, Badri, Dwaraka etc., and He chose to stay at Ayodhya as he could not resist being attracted by the Holiness of Sri RAMA's birth place. From there, he was dragged by an unconrolled desire to follow the new Southern BRIGHT Star/Light appeared in the sky (as seen only by his eyes at night) and found himself at the feet of the Greatest AzhwAr "NammAzhwAr". After a brief encounter (Please read the post on NammAzhwAr for details), he prayed to NammAzhwAr requesting him to protect and accept him as his disciple. From then on, he stayed with NammAzhwAr and complied all pAsurams of NammAzhwAr. Madhurakavi was so much devoted to NammAzhwAr, his Acharya, that he held him equal to (higher than) Lord Sri Narayana (You will agree that the Lord asks for that Bhagavatha Bhakti more than Bhagavadh Bhakti).

After NammAzhwAr departed from this earthly world, he was blessed with a Golden vigraham of NammAzhwAr which he consecrated and performed ThiruvarAdhanA and uthsavams in his honour. He was impressed by nammAzhwAr's works so much that wanted to stage NammAzhwAr's works in front of other scholars. the sangam poets objected to such claims and praises NammazhwAr who had no connection with Sangam ( a big deal!). Madhurakavi, it seems was saddened by this protest and was weeping literally. NammAzhwar, appeared as an old Brahmin and consoled him saying " Do not woory about these petty issues, my child, You just place this pasuram of "Kannan kazhaliNai..." on a boat (sangap palagai) and watch the fun" and disappeared. Madhurakavi did the same and the boat, it is told capsized throwing out all the jealous, haughty poets while it retained only the leaf containing "Kannan kazhaliNai.."

It is also told that each one of those poets struggled to reach the shore and composed a verse dedicating to NammAzhwAr. And when they were about to publish their verses, they were simply AMAZED to find that each one wrote the same verse in same words; (What a marvel! what a divine AzhwAr and Divine Disciple ! - simply made for each other)

The sangam chief says " NammAzhwAr's works are superior and other poets are like flies compared to Garudan (that is NammAzhwAr); fire flies (minmini) in the presence of sun; dogs in front of the ferrocious tiger; wolf before the Lord Narasimha, ugly clumsy dwarfs dancing before the havenly beautiful Oorvasi- All their works are not equal to even one utterance of nammAzhwAr."

Madhurakavi's eyes were full of tears for his (his Acharya's) success; The eleven pAsurams are counted as part of 4000 verses simply because the whole of 4000 pasurams is claimed to be Bhagavadh vishayam while Madhurakavi's is on his Acharya which is the central gem that sheds lustre on the other jems of the garland (so says Manavala mamunigal). It is the work that holds the key to the treasure of other pAsurams.

Needless to say, Nathamuni's thaniyans (Thaniyan means dedeicated verse) on this AzhwAr depict the glory of AzhwAr and it is necessary for us to be blessed by such Great Bhaktals; Before we conclude about this mahan who performed Acharya Nishtai and attained the feet of mOksham, let us get benefitted by the rich two thaniyans of Nathamuni (in sanskrit):

Aviditha Vishaya Antharas /
Sadaarer Upanishadam Upagaana Matra Bogah /
Abhi Saguna Vasaath Tad Eka Seshee /
Madhura Kavir Hridaye Mamaavirastu /

" Here is one who knew none other than Nammalwar; the one who made it his mission in life to sing the Tamizh upanishadam of Nammalwar; The one being overwhelmed by Nammalwar held him as his very God; Let such Madhurakavi fill my heart" (our hearts, too)

VERonRum Naan aRiyEn Vedam Tamizh Seitha /
Maaran Sadakopan VaN Kurugur - YeRu EngaL /
Vaazhvaam EnRu Ethum Madhura Kaviyaar Emmai /
AaLwaar Avare SaraN /

Madhurakavi said -" I do not know anything other than Nammalwar also known as Maaran(original name of NammAzhwAr) who rendered in Tamil the essence of the Vedas and who is the head of Tirukkurugur. This Madhurakavi is our master. He is the guardian of the group of Prapannaas.

MadhurakaviAzhwAr thiruvadigaLE saraNam
Nathamuni ThiruvadigaLe saraNam