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Miscellaneous - Religion

Illustrious line of Saivite God-men

CHENNAI JUNE 5 . Devotees who sincerely yearn to realise God have before them three main paths — they can, if gifted by God, even in early years, approach Him directly; the second, to join the band of God-men who spread His glory and the third, to obtain the guidance of spiritual mentors who are qualified to lead and advise them as to how to adhere to directives and be ever in the midst of holy persons. Having gained true knowledge about the relationship between a human being and God, the preceptors of the third category will remove the ignorance of those who wish to follow them and see that their minds are kept cleansed of impurities and make them get rid of the ego and thereby experience peace and Bliss within. These guides are compared to the captains of ships who can steer their vessels carefully weathering all storms and enable the passengers (their disciples) to reach the destination (salvation) safely. Even men who had been chosen by God Himself to turn others virtuous have resorted to such illustrious religious mediators (popularly called Gurus). Arunagirinathar, who has left Thiruppugazh, a collection of numerous verses for posterity's benefit, had sung that God should appear as his master. Another saint of recent years, Kumaraguruparar, who was dumb, got illumined suddenly at a young age, but he too sought spiritual knowledge later at the feet of the Dharmapuram Adheenam saint. Among the 63 Nayanmars, Appoodhi Adigal was totally dedicated to Thirunavukkarasar. In this illustrious line of holy men came Pamban Swamigal, who has contributed 6666 verses to reveal who God is, His qualities and how to get His mercy. In one verse the Swamigal echoes the sentiments of Manickavasagar (in his Siva Puranam) that we should adore "Him who never departs from our hearts." This knowledge will be transmitted by an enlightened Guru to his disciples.

Sri Swamigal entered "Samadhi" in Chennai and when alive, he had sung in praise of Lord subramania(of Kandakottam) even as Ramalinga Swamigal was also attached to Him, said Sri C.V. Sadanandam in a lecture on the former's contribution on his 73rd Guru Pooja day. "Even if you discard me, do not reject my devotees", sang Pamban Swamigal, who occupies a distinguished place in the line of preceptors of Saiva Siddhanta. He had pointed out that "Suddha Advaita" which he preached, did not conflict with any other religion but embraced everything in this world.

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