Friday, February 27, 2009

Mallappa Sindhe

The present temple in Mantralayam today is being built by Sri Mallappa Sindhe. The blessings that Gurugalu showered on him cannot be described in words. He is a Maharashtrian and a resident of Rayachur. 

Once he suffered with a very bad stomach pain. All the doctors could not find the cause and were not able to treat him. Though Sindhe was on a constant medical advice, the pain was incurable. Even some of the famous doctors in Bombay(present Mumbai) could not find the cause or cure. Sindhe was disappointed and lost all hopes on his life. 

One fine day he over heard Gurugalu's miracles and their powers. Soon he started praying to Gurugalu's picture in his house itself with great devotion. One night he saw Gurugalu in his dreams and was guided to go to Bombay and consult the doctor for cure. Mallappa Sindhe again returned to Bombay and pleaded the same doctor who treated him earlier to give a try.

This time the doctor had a dream where in he saw an old brahmin who guided him the way to perform the operation on Sindhe. The doctor explained the same to Sindhe and soon arranged for an operation. Sindhe was very happy and thanked Gurugalu for their grace. He had gained confidence that Gurugalu would definitely save his life. 

Operation started in the operation theatre. Junior doctors were assissting the Head Doctor. But where was the Head Doctor then? He was actually not in the operation theatre. When he opened the door of the operation theatre, he saw the same old brahmin in saffron clothes who guided him in his dreams, performing the operation with ease. He stood astonished. The operation completed. The Head Doctor standing out, saw the old brahmin being disappeared. He went into the theatre and asked the junior doctors whether the operation was successful or not. The junior doctors asked him in return whether it was successful or not. 

The doctor said that he din't knew anything and was not present in the theatre at all. He said he walked in now to know the condition of the patient. The junior doctors were shocked at this as they saw him operating. Then the Head doctor explained all that he saw from outside the theatre. "Yes, some saint in saffron clothes had performed the operation. I have seen with my naked eyes !"

After Sindhe regained consciousness, he thanked and complimented all the doctors for witnessing Gurugalu - the junior doctors saw Gurugalu as their Head Doctor and the Head Doctor as an old brahmin.

Especially Sindhe was very happy as Gurugalu themselves performed operation on him. His happiness knew no bounds. He thanked Gurugalu and prayed/praised their grace. He no more sufferred with the stomach pain. It was a re-birth to him. He immediately planned to visit Gurugalu's Brindavana at Mantralayam. 

Fortunately he witnessed the Brindavana in his dreams itself. Later he also saw Gurugalu who ordered Sindhe to build a temple around the Brindavana with RCC(Reinforced Cement Concrete). Sindhe accepted happily. He informed his brothers the same. When he went to Mantralayam, he saw the same Brindavana he witnessed in his dreams. He explained all these miracles to HH Sri Sri Sri Sujayeendra Theertharu. They blessed him and complimented him for his good fortune. 

The Sindhe brothers together spent around 4 lacs and built the present temple around the Brindavana. Year 1921 witnessed the 300th anniversary(Aaradhana Utsavam) of Gurugalu entering the Brindavana and the construction of the temple finished by that time. The celebrations were held very grandly.                          

Sri Raghavendraya Namaha !!!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Sir Thomas Manroe

Gurugalu blessed many of their devotess from Brindavana itself. Some blessed ones have seen Gurugalu in the Brindavana. They were quite lucky, in fact they were born lucky !!! One such lucky person was Sir Thomas Manroe who have seen Gurugalu in the Brindavana and spoke to them too !!! Gurugalu bless the pure and blemishless souls, regardless of caste, creed, country or for that sake any anything. 

Gurugalu called that foreigner to their presence in a matter related to temple properties. In 1812 AD, East India Company passed a  decree that the temple properties whose owner was not alive would be seized by the government. Then Sir Thomas Manroe were the district collector of Ballary and they observed that Mantralayam was one such temple whose owner was not alive. In 1820, they came to Adoni and asked the sub-divisional incharge of Adoni about the same. 

They both went together to Mantralayam. They approached the Mutt officials and explained them the decree. The officials were not worried. They knew that nothing could go wrong in regards to Gurugalu's property. They were so confident and had complete faith in Gurugalu. 

Sir Thomas Manroe, the collector, left his footwear outside the temple and went in to have a look at the Brindavana. He took of his cap and stood in front of Brindavana. The stone built Brindavana became transparent and the collector was able to see Gurugalu clearly. Gurugalu were in bright saffron clothes, sat in yogasana and were shining with glow. Gurugalu asked collector the reason for his visit. Manroe explained the purpose. Wonder ! They both conversed in English ! Gurugalu are omniscient. How could language be a barrier for them? Since Monroe could direclty see the owner of the properties with their own eyes, he could not pass the orders. Monroe explained his experience to the Mutt officials after a satisfactory conversation with Gurugalu. The officials were very happy for Monroe and expressed that he was very fortunate. 

The devotess around could only view the Brindavana and Monroe talking to Brindavana. They could not witness Gurugalu with their naked eyes ! But they were surprised to see Monroe talking to Brindavana in English. Monroe explained to the devotees about Gurugalu's appearance like this - "What a glow in their eyes ! What a stature ! What a commanding yet sweet voice ! What a fluency in English ! What a grip on language ! One would definitely wish to prostrate before them." Listening to this, the devotees were moved emotionally and could not express their feelings. 

Explaining this incident, Monroe sent a report to the Governor, which declared that the Mutt belongs to Jagirdars of Mantralayam. Soon after this incident, he was promoted to Governor's post and he himself had to approve his report ! He thought his new post to be the blessings of Gurugalu and prayed to Gurugalu in his heart. 

This incident was preserved as a note in the Madras Gazetteer. It can be seen in letter format:

"Extract from Madras District Gazetteer" by W. Francis Esq ICS

Volume No 1 Bellary Reprint 1916 by the Superintendent Govt. Press, Madras.

Chapter XV - Adoni Taluk, Page no 213, Manchala(Mantralayam)

A short-term village with a population of 1212 on the bank of Tungabhadra in the extreme North of Taluk. The village is widely known as containing the tomb of the Madhwa Saint Sri Raghavendra Swamy. The Annual festival in August with which is attended by large number of pilgrims including even the Lingayats from Bombay, Nizams' dominions and even Mysore. The tomb itself is not of interest. The grant of the landed endowment attached to it is said in one of the mackengic to have been made by Venkanna Pant, the well known dewan of Siddi Masud Khan, Governor of Adoni from 1662 to 1687. A quaint story of Sir Thomas Manroe is said about the place. The endowment being threatened with resumption, came to make enquiries after removing his boots and taking off his hat, he approached the grave. The saint there upon emerged from his tomb and met him. They conversed together for sometime regarding the resumption, but since the saint was visible and audible to Monroe - who was himself, the people declare, semidivine, none of the others who were there could either see or hear what he said. The discusson ended. Monroe returned to his tent and quashed the proposal to resume the endowment. Being offered some consecreated rice, he accepted it and ordered it to be used in the preparation of his meals for that day ! 
 --- Madras review VII -- 280             

Sri Raghavendraya Namaha !!!  

Monday, February 23, 2009

Sri Vadindra Theertharu

In Poorvashramam, Sri Vadindra Theertharu were called by name Srinivasa Charyaru. Srinivasa Charyaru were the great grandson of Gurugalu. They were a great poet, a great scholar and also a great devotee of Sri Raghavendra Swamygalu. Sri Vadindra Theertharu composed the well-known "Sri Guru Guna Sthavam" a composition on Gurugalu, describing their greatness.

When Sri Vadindra Theertharu chanted this stotra in front of Gurugalu's Brindavana, the Brindavana and it's surroundings shone with illumination and was filled with an aura of vibrations. It was an indication that Gurugalu were pleased with the composition and the chanting of Sri Vadindra Theertharu. Sri Vadindra Theertharu were one of the closest students of Gurugalu and their(Sri Vadindra Theertharu's) Brindavana is still just beside Gurugalu's Brindavana in Mantralayam. After Gurugalu, Sri Vadindra Theertharu are almost equivalent to Gurugalu in all ways and there is no one equaling them.    

Sri Raghavendraya Namaha !!!    


Monday, February 16, 2009

Sri Jagannatha Dasaru

Diwan Venkanna, along with the Brindavana for Rayaru, had also built around 60 houses in Manchala for brahmins. The Ashrama in Manchala turned into a Mutt. Manchala became a sacred pilgrim centre. Devotees thronged to Manchala for Rayaru's darshana.

Sri Jagannatha Dasaru was a very great devotee of Gurugalu and was one among who visited Manchala. They were very close to Gurugalu. It is said that Gurugalu spoke to Dasaru from Brindavana. 

Sri Jagannatha Dasaru was from Rayachur and were born to Narasappa and Lakshmakka with the blessings of Sri Purandara Dasaru. It is said that Sri Jagannatha dasaru were the incarnation of Madhvipathi, youngest son of Sri Purandara Dasaru and who later was Sahlada, the younger brother of Prahlada. 

In Poorvashrama, Sri Jagannatha Dasaru were Sri Srinivasa Charya, a great scholar. They were the student of Sri Varadendra Theertharu who was the Guru of Sri Raghavendra Swamy. Sri Gopala Dasaru, the student of Sri Vijaya Dasaru, named Srinivasa Charya as Sri Jagannatha Dasaru.

After being named as Jagannatha Dasa, they visited Manchala and offered their prayers to Gurugalu. They have composed a literary work by name "Hari Kathamrutha Saaram". Sri Jagannatha Dasaru, apart from composing literary works on Lord, they also composed a song on Sri Raghavendra Swamygalu. In this song they mentioned all the miracles of Gurugalu and the way Gurugalu saved several people. 

Here are some of the miracles(not mentioned in the Charithra) that Sri Jagannatha Dasaru mentioned in their song:

Once a devotee of Gurugalu happened to hit their head to a door accidentally and got hurt very badly that took their life. Gurugalu knowing this, gave life to that devotee. 

Once a Lingayat Jamindar, to test the powers of Gurugalu, challenged Gurugalu that if they could make a stick to sprout. Gurugalu took the challenge and daily sprinkled the theertha on the stick. One of the greatest wonders...that stick started to sprout !

When a brahmin collapsed due to thirst in a desert, Gurugalu created a spring in the desert and gave life to that brahmin. 

In this way Sri Jagannatha Dasaru praised Gurugalu in their composition: "Raghavendra Gunasandra...!"

It is said that Gurugalu spoke to Sri Jagannatha Dasaru from the Brindavana. One day, other devotees tried listening to Gurugalu's conversation with Sri Jagannatha Dasaru. That day Gurugalu did not talk to Jagannatha Dasaru and Dasaru were upset. Dasaru sang a song on Gurugalu emotionally. And at night Gurugalu appeared in Dasaru's dreams and said that they would be talking to them daily in dreams alone. From then on, Gurugalu spoke to Dasaru in their dreams. That was the relationship between Sri Jagannatha Dasaru and Gurugalu. 

That was the fortune of Sri Jagannatha Dasaru ! They lived for 72 years(1649-1721BC) in this world and composed several devotional songs and literary works.

Sri Raghavendraya Namaha !!!

Saturday, February 14, 2009


Gurugalu bless the poor and the needy from the Brindavana. Every devotee is attended to by Gurugalu. From lay man to a King, from pauper to rich, from a sinner to an impeccable, everyone who beckons Gurugalu are attended immediately. A sinner who confesses his sin and apologises, will be shown a right path in life by Gurugalu. His sins are washed off. Gurugalu soothes people in problems, shows them a way to solve the problems. 

Dumb may speak, blind may see, deaf may hear, physically handicapped may get well, mentally retarted may become normal by Gurugalu's grace. The childless may be blessed, an illiterate may turn out to be a literate, health disorders may fade over a period of time. Gurugalu cannot hear the cry of their devotee. They instantly come to rescue. There is nothing in this world that is impossible to Gurugalu.  

To the one who chant their name, Gurugalu is like a sacred cow or Kamadhenu, and to the one who pay obeisance to them, Gurugalu is a Kalpavriksham or the sacred tree which grants any boon.
One who bathes in the Tungabhadra, worships Gurugalu's Brindavana, chants the mantra - "Om Sri Raghavendraya Namaha !", reads the Guru Charithra with pure heart and devotion will get rid of all their sins. They are granted any true wish, their dreams come true, life becomes easier to live and lead, problems get solved and sometimes the problems which we think may arise, never turn up. That's the grace of Gurugalu !   

It is said that only through a proper Guru, it is possible for a lay man to reach the abode of Lord Sri Hari. Guru is a channel through which one can attain salvation. A Guru is one who guides us in proper direction. And Gurugalu, Sri Raghavendra Swamy, is one such Guru who lead us all to the abode of Lord. They guide us and show a path to attain salvation. Not just salvation at the end of this life, one attains peace, leads a peaceful and happy life in this world by Gurugalu's grace. If Gurugalu is beside us, then we are the richest and the happiest, lack nothing in this world. 

We all are blessed and have done some good deed in our previous births, to have atleast born during this period(i.e. within the 700 years span) and having witnessed atleast the Brindavana of Gurugalu. Just unimaginable of the situation void Gurugalu in this present world ! 

Thankful to Lord Sri Hari for sending down the Kalpavriksha and the Kamadhenu in the form of Gurugalu, to save us all in the time of distress, need and problems in this Kaliyuga. Let's all pray together to the Kamadhenu, our Kaplavriksha, who saved/saves us in difficult times and thank HIM for standing beside us forever - 



Thursday, February 5, 2009

Entry into Brindavana !!!

Not all students knew about Gurugalu's Brindavana entry. The one who knew this event went to their homes hoping to come back on the day of entry. All the arrangements were going on well. Tomorrow is Vidiya. People from different places thronged Manchala. Tungabhadra was crowded. Except Sri Appana Charyaru, all other students who went to their homes returned back to Manchala.  

Sacred hymns were chanted. A pedestal was built using the stone on which Lord Sri Rama sat for 7 minutes. Sri Moola Rama Swamy puja was performed by Gurugalu for the last time. The idols were decorated with flower garlands and lamps were lit all around. Maha Mangala Haarathi(A grand offering of lighted camphor) was offered to Sri Moola Rama Swamy amidst bells and gongs. Thousands of people along with Sri Yogindra Theertharu observed the puja with utmost devotion.   With the support of one of the students Gurugalu sat on the pedestal and started meditation. They visualised all the deities - Lord Sri Rama, Lord Sri Krishna, Sri Narasimha Swamy, Sri Hayagreeva Devaru, Five faced Lord Hanuman, Sri Madhva Charyaru, Sri Veda Vyasaru, Sri Bheema Senaru... 

Gurugalu praised the Lord by singing the song - "Indu Enege Govinda". After this Gurugalu were lost in deep meditation. While on the other side, some devotees were singing songs, some others were dancing, some were performing sacrifices and mass prayers. The place echoed with sacred hymns and prayers. Gurugalu reached the highest point in meditation. Their countenance glowed with a sheen that surpassed the Sun. At one stage the Japamaala in Gurugalu's hand became still. Venkanna and other disciples who understood this sign started arranging slabs.  

Amidst sacred chanting of the hymns, the first layer of slab was laid around the pedestal. Sacred conches containing Ganges waters and 700 Lakshmi Narayana Saaligraamas were placed inside. Second layer of slab was laid which covered the pedestal on which Gurugalu sat. Soon all the slabs were laid. As tears rolled down the cheeks of Sri Yadavendra Theertharu, they recited the last sloka - 

"Durwadi dhwaantaravaye Vaishnavendi varendave
Sri Raghavendra Guruve Namo atyanta dayaaluve !!!"

and prostrated before the Lord.


Venkanna remembered how Gurugalu's grace changed his life from a shepherd to a Diwan. His heart wept. He paid his obeisance by prostrating before the Brindavana. All the other students became emotional and could not control their tears. 

Appana Charyaru, the beloved disciple of Gurugalu, could not make it for the event as they had been to inform about Gurugalu's Brindavana entry to other disciples living far. By the time they started to return back to Manchala, it was already late. They ran towards Manchala, composing the famous Sri Raghavendra Stotra - "Sri Poorna Bodha Guru Tirtha payobdhi paara...." When they reached the Tungabhadra, the river was in full spate. But Appana Charyaru was desperate to reach Manchala and rushed headlong. The power of their devotion was immense that the river parted for them and they could reach Manchala quickly. But still Appana Charyaru could not make it. By the time they reached the Brindavana, the last slab was laid and they could not see their beloved Guru for the last time. Tears started to gush from their eyes and voice choked. And the stotra too reached the last stanza - 

"Kintvistaartha samruddhi reva kamalaa naatha prasaadodayat
Kirtir digvidita vibhutiratula..." 

and could not continue further. Suddenly everyone heard a voice from the Brindavana - 

"Saakshi Haya Syotra Hi " (which means - Lord Hayagriva is the witness to this Stotra by Sri Appana Charyaru and that Gurugalu would make them all come true). 

Every single devotee prostrated before Gurugalu's Brindavana. Manchala attained sanctity by the presence of Gurugalu's Brindavana. 

Poojyaya Raghavendraya Satya Dharma Ratayacha |
Bhajataam KalpaVrikshaya Namataam Kamadhenave || 

Sri Raghavendraya Namaha | Sri Raghavendraya Namaha | Sri Raghavendraya Namaha |


At the shores of Tungabhadra !

Manchala was favourable for Gurugalu's meditation and prayers. Some times people from Kumbhakonam and Tanjore visited Manchala, for Gurugalu's blessings. These days Gurugalu were not delivering any spiritual discourses. They were spending most of the time in meditation, singing songs, playing veena, teaching students and performing Sri Moola Rama puja. Devotees visiting the place found an extraordinary aura of peace and bliss. 

Gurugalu descibed about Goddess Manchalamma to who ever vistited the place. The daily prayers went on very well. Venkanna Charya, the son of Gururaja Charya who was Gurugalu's brother in the Poorvashramam, was a student of Gurugalu. Also, the great poet and Gurugalu's nephew, Sri Narayana was also a student of Gurugalu. Among these students was yet another great scholar, Sri Raghava Charya. It was difficult to decide who was best among the students of Gurugalu. Each one were excellent in their own way. Gurugalu taught them great scriptures and compiled few books for their future reference. 

Poeple of all races, sects, status etc visted Gurugalu for their blessings. Sometimes King Vijaya Raghava Raya himself came to Manchala for the darshanam of Gurugalu. The Nawab of Adoni too visited quite often. From a pauper to a King, every one visited Gurugalu at Manchala, for their blessings. And all were equally blessed by Gurugalu. 

Once, from Kerala, three great astrologers too came to Gurugalu, to take their blessings. Gurugalu, with a smile, asked them to analyse their horoscope. Those astrologers analysed the horoscope of Gurugalu separately and concluded about Gurugalu's age. Each one concluded that Gurugalu's life span would be 76 years, 300 years and 700 years respectively. Students present there did not understand and rejected their analysis. But Gurugalu praised the three astrologers and blessed them. Gurugalu explained to their students that all the three were correct predictions. Gurugalu said that they would live in this world for 76 years, their works and teachings would have prominence for 300 years and they would save the needy and bless their devotees for 700 years. 

Days rolled on. Dewan Venkanna visited almost every alternate day. Once when Venkanna visited, Gurugalu told him that they would enter Brindavana in Manchala itself. And asked Venkanna to get a stone from Madhavaram, where Lord Sri Rama during their exile in forest had sat on that stone for 7 minutes. Gurugalu then explained Venkanna about the features of the stone and wished that their Brindavana be built using that stone. Venkanna followed Gurugalu's orders.

One day Gurugalu were teaching their students. Suddenly their concentration deviated and they looked into the sky. They paid obeisance by saluting to someone. Some lucky students who looked into the sky saw an elderly man speaking to Gurugalu silently with a smile. That elderly man was waving their hands and showing 2 fingers at Gurugalu. The students who observed this were stunned. After sometime, Gurugalu back in this world, explained their students about this incident. That elderly man was Sri Veda Vyasa. Gurugalu asked them their life span in this world, for which Sri Veda Vyasa replied back saying "2 years, 2 months and 2 weeks" more. After that, Gurugalu revealed to their students that they would enter the Brindavana alive. 

As time passed by, Venkanna Charya(nephew of Gurugalu) assumed Sanyasa from Gurugalu. And they were named as Sri Yogindra Theertha. Gurugalu declared that Sri Yogindra Theertharu would be ascending the throne of Sarvagna Peetam next. 

Shalivahana Shakam, 1593, Virodhikruth Nama Samvatsaram, Sravana Masam, Krishna Paksham, Vidiya - another day to go ! As per Gurugalu's decree, Diwan Venkanna was arranging to build the Brindavana. 700 best Lakshmi Narayana Saaligraamas were brought to place in the Brindavana. The stone from Madhavaram was also brought and was used in the built. 

It was dawn and Gurugalu along with one of their students walked to the shores of Tungabhadra to bathe. The river, the trees, every single sand particle knew that it was the last day they would be viewing their Lord. The atmosphere was serene. Sri Raghavendra Gurugalu, after bathing, have performed their Sandhyavandane and other prayers on the shores...

Sri Raghavendraya Namaha !!! 

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

A Forest - A Holy Place - Manchala

Manchala was once a dense forest. The path Gurugalu and the crew were travelling was not clear. Moreover it was pitch dark. Tungabhadra river was flowing pleasantly. Some of the crew did not understand why Gurugalu have claimed this place from the Nawab. But some others, who had spiritual powers, felt the pleasantness and a spiritual aura that surrounded that place. 

Gurugalu were more happier than usual. With a smile, Gurugalu said - "King Prahlada performed several sacrifices on this holy land. This place had then seen great sages, sacred sacrificial fires, sacred hymns from the Vedas etc. King Prahlada performed these sacrifices for the welfare of his country." (If you remember, Gurugalu themselves were King Prahlada in their previous birth !)

Though it was now a dense forest, Godess Renukamba, the principle deity of King Prahlada should still be existing on this sacred land. Gurugalu started meditating the Divine Mother silently. Later, Gurugalu along with their students cleaned the forest area. It turned to an even surface.

River Tungabhadra was flowing downwards amidst hills. Early in the morning, when Gurugalu walked towards the river Tungabhadra for bathing, the river reduced its speed and roar with reverence. Every sand particle was blessed to have been touched by the Lord. The trees that stood tall on the other side of the bank, swayed down as an obeisance to Gurugalu.

Sri Raghavendraya Namaha !!! 


Sunday, February 1, 2009

Nawab's Arrogance !

Learning about Venkanna's past life, the courtiers and the public in the court were mesmerized. But Nawab had no faith in Gurugalu's powers. He did not trust Gurugalu. He himself wanted to test Gurugalu's power. He beckoned few of his soldiers and ordered them to get a plate containing various non-vegetarian foods. Nawab  covered the plate with a nice cloth and took it to the presence of Gurugalu. He said - "Swamy, this is our present to the Lord, please accept it !" 

Gurugalu smiled, sprinkled water on the plate and asked to remove the cloth. Nawab was shocked. He could not believe his eyes. The plate was filled with various fruits and flowers. His pride shattered. He stood with his head bent in front of Gurugalu and offered salutations by folding his hands. He walked into his chamber and regretted for his mistake. He was afraid of the punishment he would be facing from Gurugalu for this mean act. He immediately called Venkanna and explained his mistake. Venkanna smiled and admonished Nawab. Nawab then sent Venkanna to Gurugalu to ask what he should be paying for his deed. 

Venkanna first explained the act of Nawab and Gurugalu's miracle to the courtiers. He then approched Gurugalu and pleaded them to forgive Nawab for his misdeed. Gurugalu smiled and soothed Venkanna. Venkanna then said that Nawab wished to offer presents to the Peetam and they could claim anything. Gurugalu asked for Manchala village on the banks of river Tungabhadra. Nawab accepted. Though it was already offered to someone else, Manchala was revoked from him and he was offered another peaceful place. Nawab stood satisfied. 

Venkanna asked if Gurugalu wanted anything more from Nawab. Gurugalu gently declined the offer. Then Gurugalu bathed and set for performing Sri Moola Rama Swamy puja. To view this puja, hundreds of people from Adoni gathered in the court. 

Sri Raghavendraya Namaha !!!