When a Sivalinga surfaced on Srimadsadi Hills near village Kaladi in Kerala, King Rajasekharan constructed a Sivalaya all over it. Adya Samkaracarya landed at Kaladi village near Cochin to visit the planet during Yudhisthirabda 2631 to 2663 according to his horoscope preserved at Dvarika Matha, also confirmed from a Tamra-Patra excavated at that site. Integrated to the eternal endeavour of “…Sambhavami Yuge Yuge” as enunciated by Vasudeva Sri Krsna in Srimadbhagvad Gita, he had incarnated when entire polity of the nation was extensively fractionated into more than 56 small kingdoms with no one capable to unite them. Society too, was divided and sub-divided into warring groups, Sanatana Dharma degraded into rituals and sects ravaged by superstitions as well as malpractices. More than 72 Vedic and non-Vediccults were in vogue acting at cross-purposes of one another rendering entire society directionless groping in dark for enlightenment and wisdom.
Though in his early teens, Adya set his life-mission in right earnest by defying the tradition of praying before ones mother first for alms before commencement of Brhmacarya after undergoing Yajnopavita Samskara and preferred to go to village sweepress begging for alms. Thus he signalled the world, he was there for a very different purpose altogether. Thereafter he undertook Diksa from his Guru Govindapada Maharajaon banks of Narmada river at Omkaresvara Tirtha and began his long journey of Adhyatmika unification and social reforms. The very young ascetic, erudite scholar all Veda-s and other scriptures traversed on foot upto Kedarnath, Badrinath in north and Cidambaram in south. Probably it was the first instance in the history of this ancient nation when a very young ascetic exceedingly proficient in scriptures, defeated learned scholars of all hues all over the nation during his sojourn and moved on. A new era of reforms and enlightenment had dawned upon the nation with enunciation of Vedanta Darsana based Prasthantraya of Upanisada-s, Brhma Sutra and Bhagvad Gita.
While on way to Ganga for bathing in Kasi accompanied by his disciples, he was stopped by a Svapaca (Candala) –
Atramayadtramayama Athava Caitanyameva Caitanyat I
Yativara Durikartu Vamcasi Kim Bruhi Gaccha Gaccheti II (Samkarajyoti Page 10)
Yativara ! tell me, whom are you asking to go away, go away ? Asking this mortal frame to move away from yet another mortal frame ? Or one Consciousness-incarnate from yet another Consciousness-incarnate ?
He lobbed yet another question at the ascetic –
Kim Gangambuni Bimbiteambaramani Candalavapipayaha I
Pureapyantaramasti KascanaghatimrtkumbhayoScambarey II
Pratyagvastuni Nistaragam Sahajanandavabodhambudhau I
Viproayam Svapacoayamityapi Mahanakoayam Vibhedabhramaha II (Vahi, Page 10)
Is the sun simmering on river streams of Ganga different from the one on a pool of water inside inhabitation of Candala-s ? Or the Akasainside earthen pitcher different from the one inside a golden one ? What is the basis of delusion of difference between Absolute bliss, ultimate tranquil wisdom in this self-realised Brhmana and this self-realised Svapaca ?
Svapaca was relentless in questioning the Sannyasi –
Santam Sariresvasariramekamupeksya Purnam Purusam Puranam I
Acintyamavyaktamanntamadyama Vismrtya Rupam Vimalam Vimohat II (Vahi, Page 10)
Why are you derogating a complete, autonomous, incomprehensible, unmanifest, infinite, ancient, attributeless and immortal Purusa dwelling in all bodies ?
It was then that the erudite ascetic and his celebrated disciples were struck with profound embarrassment and responded forthwith –
Jagritasvapnasusuptisu Sphutatara Ya Samvidujjambhate I
Ya Brhmadipipilikantatanusu Prota Jagatsaksini I
Saivaham Na Ca Drsyavastitvapi Drdhaprajnapi Yayasti Cet I
Candaloastu Sa Tu Dvijoastu Gururityesa Manisa Mam II (Vahi, Page 11)
I am the same Brhma who exists in all beings from ants to all, pure consciousness in all Jagrit, Svapna and Susupta states. One so resolutely enlightened, is certainly my Guru whether Candala or Dvija.
The legendary ascetic further added –
Brhmauvahamidam Jagaca Sakalam Cinmatravistaritam I
Sarvam Caitadavidyaya Trigunayaasesam Maya Kalpitam I
Ittham Yasya Drdha Matiha Sukhtare Nitye Pare Nirmale I
Candaloastu Sa Tu Dvijoastu Gururityesa Manisa Mam II (Vahi, Page 11)
One who is resolved in “I am Brhma, this entire universe is Brhma, its expansion is due to the trinity of ignorance” by conviction, is certainly my Guru irrespective of being a Candala or Dvija.
By the moment he completed his erudite response, splendid wisdom of Advaita dawned upon the renowned ascetic realising the so-called Candala was Siva Himself incarnating with the objective of imparting the legendary Darsana. He expounded it further in his Bhaja Govindam–
Sarvasmitrapi Pasyatmanam Sarvatrotsrija Bhedajnanam I
Behold yourself in all beings and eschew ignorance that engenders differentiation and discrimination.
In Aparoksanubhuti, he expounded same Brhma in all beings –
Brhamanaha Sarvabhutani Jayante Paramatmanaha I
Tasmadetani Brahamaiva Bhavantityavadharayet II
All Bhuta-s emanate from Param Brhmatma alone. Hence, they all are Brhma alone.
Beholding entire universe as a Saksi i.e. dispassionate observer, is the apex of entire endeavour of Yoga. Ruminating over ephemerality and mortality of the world is highest order of asceticism. His philosophy transcends not only Buddhism but also all other streams of Saivism, description, argumentation, five faculties of cognition, all forms of relationships as He is Nirakara and Nirvikalpa, so expounded in his Nirvanastakam. He strived to unite all modes of worship under one umbrella of Param Brhmatma by propagating Pancayatan i.e. worshipping Siva, Visnu, Ganapati, Surya and Sakti. Sakta, Vaisnava, Saiva, Ganapatya and Adityopasana constitute worshipping the same divinity in those modes. Adya trudged all over the nation to propagate Adityopasana, raised twelve Ganapati shrines and eighteen Jyotirlinga-s at various locations in his mission. Somewhere he expounded Valmiki Ramayana as the legendary poem while at other, Srimad Bhagavat as a narration to enchant the nation. He merged tenets of Buddhism with Sanatana principles while declaring Buddha as ninth incarnation of Visnu. As he emphasised equal right of Sudra-s and women to seek ultimate enlightenment, he declined to acknowledge Varna and Asrama as hurdles on the path for anyone. He declared, doors to enlightenment are ever open to all.
Adya commenced his missionary sojourn preaching Self-enlightenment to begin with, then Advaita Darsana to ephemerability of Mayaculminating into Bhakti. He broached Bhakti to erudite scholars by declaring, that alone begets solace in concluding moments of ones life in Carpata Panjarika –
Bhaja Govindam Bhaja Govindam Bhaja Govindam Mudhamate I
Samprapte Satrihite Kale Na Hi Na Hi Raksati Dukrnjakarane II
O deluded ones ! worship Govinda, adore Govinda as indulgences shall not protect you when close to death.
When the nation was fractured on lines of Mantrayana, Hinayana, Tantrayana, Kapalika, Pancamakkar etc., when Karmakanda had turned too arduous, he authored treatises compatible to those times while dwelling in Vyasa-Guha at Badarikasrama for four years. From Badarikasrama, Adya came to Prayagaraj to meet legendary Vedic scholar Kumarila Bhatt who advised him to meet Mandana Misra at Mahismati in Bihar. Mandana Misra and his wife Bharati were anointed by him as his disciples after a prolonged spell of scholarly debate. Mandana Misra now Suresvaracarya, proceeded to Sringeri via Srisailam. At Sringeri, the Sannyasi established Sarada Pitha, his first one. After completing his writing at Sarda Pitha, he embarked on peregrinations across the nation after handing over the Pitha to his disciple Suresvaracarya. His journey across the nation linked Tirupati, Cidambaram, Sivaganga, Setubandha, Ramesvaram, Kanyakumari, Tiruvanantapuram, Tirucirapalli, Srirangam then Kasi. At Kasi he authored Gangastaka and Manikarnikastaka. In his subsequent rounds of peregrinations, he covered Pandharpur, Nasik, Tryambakesvara, Somnatha, Ujjain, Mathura, Vrindavana, Haridvara, Kasmira, Nepal and Kailasa. He raised Sarada Mathaat Dvarika in Gujarat and third Jyotiramatha at Visnu Prayaga. From Kasi to Vaidyanatha Dham then he arrived at Jagannatha Puri where he raised fourth Matha and consecrated it as Govardhanamatha. He completed his strive finally at Sringeri. His Adhyatmika sojourns awakened the nation into newer horizons of Advaita, Veda-s, Gita and Upanaisad-s. He also raised a fighting force in the name of Dasanami to defend Hindu-s when under siege. Adya Samkaracarya was the first titanic personality who united the fractured nation into one Adhyatmika entity bereft of malpractices, foundation of Bharatiya nationhood, profoundly qualified to be honoured as ‘Father Of The Nation’.
There is only one unfortunate regret associated with this great personality. He disembodied quite young, merely 32 he was when he attained ultimate Bliss tremendum otherwise there would have been several more tales and sagas of his superlative achievements.
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