Dhvaya mantra, the gem – The Hindu


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November 19, 2022 03:46 am | Updated 03:46 am IST
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Kooratazhvan’s eyesight was lost due to the fanaticism of a king. The person responsible for provoking the king to commit this heinous act was a man named Naalooraan. Ramanujacharya, who was the preceptor of Kooratazhvan, wanted him to sing in praise of Lord Varadaraja of Kanchi. Ramanuja’s hope was that Kooratazhvan would ask for his sight to be restored. Kooratazhvan sang Varadaraja Stava in praise of Lord Varadaraja, said Kazhiyur B. Devarajan, in a discourse. But instead of asking for restoration of his eyesight, Kooratazhvan prayed that his eyes should see nothing but the Lord and his Acharya — Ramanuja. He also prayed that Naalooran be granted moksha.
Three mantras are important for Sri Vaishnavas — ashtakshara, dhvaya and charama sloka. Of these three, dhvaya mantra is considered the gem, and Vedanta Desika says that nothing can give more welfare to a person than the recitation of dhvaya mantra. So significant is the dhvaya mantra that even the asktakshara mantra and charama sloka are explained in terms of dhvaya mantra. Thiruvaimozhi is said to be an elaboration of dhvaya. Dhvaya mantra has 10 segments. Thiruvaimozhi has 10 divisions, each of which is an explanation of a segment of dhvaya. Stotra Ratna of Alavandar and Saranagati Gadya of Ramanuja are also elaborations of dhvaya mantra. Dhvaya mantra is the crux of Visishtadvaita philosophy. Kooratazhvan, following in the footsteps of his predecessors, composed Varadaraja Stava to convey the meaning of dhvaya.
In the very first verse of Varadaraja Stava, Kooratazhvan celebrates both the Lord and His Consort. A good poetic work will have in the first verse a salutation to God and the benefits that will come to those who read the work. Varadaraja Stava has both these elements in the first verse.
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