Monday, December 10, 2018

Kerala Iyers From Logan’s Malabar Manual(1877)

Kerala  Iyers From Logan’s  Malabar  Manual(1877)

Collected in  2001

It was 18 years back and I  was  extremely busy in collecting  information of  Kerala iyers. One day  I received  this (hand written) hote from  SERi V.R.Venkateswaran  of Trivandrum. He was  80 at that time. Seeing my appeai, he went to The Kerala  State  Government Library and copied this portion  about Kerala Iyers   from the original Logan Manual on Malabar. Mr Logan was an ICS  officer of British Government  who fell in love   with Kerala and pain Stakingly   compiled  lot of info about Kerala.
    Before  you read  you should know that  Tamil Brahmins in Kerala were known as “Paradesi Brahmins”.In fact til as late is 1960, in the Goivernment sale deeds   they were called that.You should   also know that this  is one of the earliest History of these  Brahmins

Source Courtesy: Sri V R Venkiteswaran, Trivandrum.
Extracts from William Logan (1887) Malabar Manual, Vol-I
Of the East coast or Paradesi Brahmins, it is unnecessary to say much as they differ in no respect ordinary east coast Brahmins. They are calleThey are called PATTARS, a transformation of the Sanskrit word Bhattar. They engage in trade and agriculture and in domestic and other services. In former times they were used as confidential messengers and spies. One class of them are styled as Choliya or Aryapattars and instead of wearing the top knot of hair (Kudumi) on the back of their head as other east coast Brahmins, these wear it on the top of their head like Namboothiris.
The great Pattar settlements in Malabar lie in Palakkad Taluk, a taluk that if ever was occupied by Namboothiris for a long time past has been deserted by them. The Pattars live in gramam or villages, the houses being arranged in rows and streets like those of the east coast villages.
Differences between Malabar Brahmins and Pattars
Malabar Brahmins
Wears one sacred thread
Wears 1 to s sacred threads
Womens nose should not be pierced
This is allowed
Eldest son only is entitled to marriage within caste
All are entitled
Widows should lead life of sanyasins
Should not repeat Vedas on road
Sati should be avoided
You should not serve out food with bare hands
You should not use buffalo ghee in yagna
Another distinguishing feature of Namboothiris and Pattars is Smartha Vicharam. In this trial (Smartha) a women suspected to be guilty of light conduct is under pain of excommunication from Namboothiri fold. Pattars do not have such trials. When the trial is finished a night is set apart for pronouncing sentence or as it is called ” for delivering the true figure frame or aspect of the matter.” It takes place in the presence of local chieftain. The Smartha winds up with the statement that “Kutti-Pattar or boy pattar or servant pattar will name the adulterer or adulterers.There upon the servant comes forward steps on to a low stool and proclaims the name or names.
A man of the pattar caste invariably performs this duty. It is essential that the man who does it should himself be a Brahmin as no Namboothiri or Embrandiri would do it for love or money.
A needy Pattar is found and paid handsomely for doing it. Directly after he has performed the duty he proceeds to the nearest piece of water, there to immerse his whole body and wash away the sin he has committed. (pp 128)

I have become old, Oh God

I have  become old, Oh God

Translated by

Having been born  in this magical world ,
Surrounded    by all  Karmas   done earlier.
I entered  in to the circle  of love and affection,
And  after  rotating like  a  ball there ,


Image result for I have become old man clipart

After   affection and relations have been   lifted away,
With my body    getting  dead tired , I am greatly pained,
And at  this   final period of life,
I am standing  in the middle of everything,
Completely    confused   as to which way to go,
To reach  the feet of you ,our father,
Please   come and bless   me.

முந்தை வினைகள் சூழ
விந்தை உலகில் பிறந்து
பந்தச்சூழல் புகுந்து
பந்தெனச்சுழன்று இன்று
சொந்தபந்தங்கள் நீங்கி
நொந்தென் உடலம் ஓய்ந்து
அந்திப்பொழுதில் வந்து
சந்தியில் நிற்கின்றேன்
எந்தை உன் திருவடிசேர
எந்த வழி போவதென்று
சிந்தை கலங்கி நின்றேன்
வந்தெனக்கருள வேண்டும்

Cat attends Tiger’s marriage

Cat attends  Tiger’s  marriage


Image result for Tiger and a cat

A   tiger   got  married   in the forest  .
And arranged    for  a grand   reception,
All   the animals     attended   and  ,
Wished   the couple from a   distance  and went away.

After   every body left, a cat came  near ,
The tiger  and shook his hands,the tiger,
Got wild   and  shouted  “How dare  you?”
The cat  smilingly said , “I too was a tiger  before marriage.”

Sunday, December 9, 2018

How does a person grows up in life?

How  does a person  grows up in life?


I read in Tamil  post   that

The middle part of the body is belly.
The middle part of our life span is forty.
AS long as live  , you will be like   you were  forty,
Do not  allow   your belly   to bulge , after  forty,
Do not allow   your pride   to increase  after  forty,
For these  determine  whether  you are  going to,
Live  a healthy life  physically  and mentally,

Looks   alright   to me   to a large  extent,
But  I  who am nearing eighty , am not,
Like   the person I was   when I was forty,
Both physically   as   well  as  mentally.

Then  I remembered  a story that I read long back

It seems  God  Brahma  created .
A man, monkey, bull, owl and python,
At the same time   and allotted   to ,
Man twenty years  and all others  forty years.

The man  who could imagine  how his   life,
Would be   begged  God     for some  more years to live,
All other   animals    which were   watching  this,
Surrendered   twenty years  of life , which God gave to  man

Man up to the  age of twenty  lives life got from monkey,
From twenty to forty  , the life   that   he got from the  bull,’
From  forty to sixty he lives  the  life    of a  man,
From Sixty to eighty he  lives   like an owl,
And from   eighty   to hundred he lives like a python

It is   for you  all to decide  which theory  is true?

Should not think of a handicapped/very old and feeble devotee

Should not think of a  handicapped/very  old and feeble  devotee


About 18 years back  I had visited California state of USA.My son in law  took me to Shiva  Vishnu temple at  Livermoore near  San  Francisco,. We   entered the temple  together and all the temples   of different Gods  I  that  temple   were on a three foot high, very huge platform. There were  steps leading up  the platform on both sides  but what   attracted me more  was a  small elevator which can carry  few people  on to the platform. The  first question that I put the  priest   was the need of a  elevator for  just climbing three  feet. He told   that when the  temple was built  a government official   asked them how can  a handicapped person or  senior citizen   visit the temples as they cannot climb  and insisted them to have a  small elevator. Within my mind  I appreciated that concept greatly
   A few  years  later   when I visited the  temple  of Lord Vaidhyanatha    at Vaitheeswaran koil, I saw   a lame   adult  being carried and brought inside the temple due to the very tall steps. Later once them reached the Garbha Graha, the officials  objected  to a person being carried inside the temple and that  person had to crawl  like a baby   but could not see God  because he was not allowed any human support. After  a few years  just inside the same temple they had  made available some wheel chairs but again  , before  God that  person was  not  allowed to sit on a  chair.
    I know an old lady nearing 90  who is a great devotee  of Guruvayurappan. AS  long as she could walk she used to stand in a queue and see God but due to Arthritis. Nowadays   she is not able to walk. The temple does provide  a wheel chair but the best she can do it  is to go near  dwaja sthambha and with flowing tears  and say  “Ende  Guruvayurappa”

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

The great Guruvayurappan temple in Houston

The  great Guruvayurappan temple  in Houston
( temple where  wearing half pants  for both sexes  over  age  10 is  banned.)

 Taken from various places(copy  and paste)

The  great Guruvayurappan  temple  in Housten opened  in may 2015. A correspondent writes  about the temple
The deity in this temple is Krishna  and avatar of Vishnu . The rock star of the Hindu pantheon and when I say it Iam not overdoing it You will also observe that representations of other Vishnu avatars will be scattered around the temple complex . Lookout for koorma(tortoise) , Garuda (the bird ) statues . If you have been to the baps temple in Houston and observed the deities you will see the stark difference in the architecture . While the baps stresses on carved figures , use of marble and colorful life like deities the kerala temple will have  an architecture predominantly based on stone stucco brass and paintings . This is also the general difference between temple architectures between north and south India .
The temple has a layered architecture with a mini chuttambalam ( outer temple ) . Here you can see a granite pathway instead of the chuttambalam to go around the sanctum . and a sreekovil ( inner sanctum ) . The sanctum is where the deity resides . The deity is treated as a living being and is woken up fed , bathed and dressed and put to sleep everyday . Each of these activities will have a specific name depending on the time of the day this activity is performed .
Also checkout the vilakku maadam or the multi tiered brass lamps in front of the temple . The top of this lamp will have a figure of Garuda the half bird half man vehicle of god Vishnu , he is placed as if looking at the deity and praying . The other multi tiered lamps are made of stone and placed on figures of tortoises which is one of the avatars of Vishnu .
The temple architecture is multi tiered . This was traditionally done to withstand monsoons and floods in kerala . Although traditionally wood is used for skeleton this temple is predominantly concrete.
There is a strict dress code in the temple . I have attached a picture . Videography and photography is prohibited in the temple unless you have special permission from authorities . Deities cannot be photographed . There is a large shoe rack outside the temple as shown in pictures .
There is an outer tent for Pooja of vehicles and devotees are offered sacred food on certain days . This is called annadanam and the details can be found outside the temple main office adjacent to the tent for vehicle poojas .
There are 2 gates to the temple and ample parking . 

11620 Ormandy St
Houston, TX 77035
Fondren Southwest
 Get Directions
 Phone number(713) 729-8994
The temple  works from 6 Am to 9 Am and evening  from 6 to 8.30 PM on normal days and 6 Am to 12 Noon  and 530 Pm  to 8 Pm  in the week ends

Sri Maha Vallabha Ganapati Devasthanam the First Hindu temple in USA

Sri Maha Vallabha Ganapati Devasthanam  the First  Hindu temple  in USA

Compiled  from Wikipedia  and the web site  of the temple


The temple  ( Tamil : ஸ்ரீ மஹா வல்லப கணபதி தேவஸ்தானம். Telugu:శ్రీ మహావల్లభ గణపతి దేవస్థానం Sanskrit: श्री महावल्लभ गणपति देवस्थानम्) is   at 45–57 Bowne Street, Flushing, Queens, in New York City, claims to be the very first of the traditional Hindu temples in the USA and  is managed  by Hindu temple  Society of North  America, It is popularly referred to as the Ganesh Temple, Flushing since the main deity is Lord Ganesh.


The Hindu Temple Society of North America was incorporated on January 26, 1970, and initially met in the living room of one Sri Alagappan . It acquired from the Russian Orthodox Church a site on which the present Temple of Lord  Ganesa (The first Hindu Temple in USA)   is situated. The present structure, designed in accordance with the Agama Sastras (scriptures relating to temple building), was completed in 1977, and the First Kumbabishekam   of the temple   was performed on July 4 of the same year. Sri La Sri Padrimalai Swamigal, from Madras, had prepared twenty-six yantras for the temple and done pujas for them for five years before installing them.

The temple
The temple  is dedicated to Lord Ganesha, while other shrines house idols of Lord Balaji, Goddess Mahalakshmi, Lord Hanuman and Sri Nagendra Swamy. Temple includes a dhvajastambha (Flag post) and a rajagopuram . In September 1995, the Hindu milk miracle was observed at the temple. It was reported that "People held the spoon filled with milk under the trunk, by the mouth, and the milk would be taken up

The temple includes a Pathsala (school) where children learn languages such as Hindi, Tamil, English and Sanskrit as well as Math, Science and Religion. Yoga and Meditation classes also offered. Construction of the Vedanta Library, Senior Citizen Center, and Staff Quarters has also been undertaken. The Hindu Temple Society of North America today has over twenty thousand devotees on its mailing list. In addition to these, there are thousands of other devotees not necessarily on the mailing list who benefit from religious and cultural activities of the Temple, and to which generous contributions are made. It is the intent of the Society to offer formal instructions in religion, philosophy, culture and the arts to its devotees and their families.The temple has  a very great  vegetarian canteen and has  a community hall  which is rented out to religious functions. The canteen feeds 4,000 people a week, with as many as 10,000 during the Deepavali (Diwali)holiday. The canteen feeds 4,000 people a week, with as many as 10,000 during the Deepavali (Diwali)holiday.

The  temple managed by a11-member honorary board.

Neighborhood, Address and contact  Particulars
The Hindu Temple is situated right in the heart of Flushing, which is a part of Queens County. Although Queens is, politically speaking, one of the five boroughs of New York City, it is, in geographical terms, a part of Long Island and is, therefore, largely a residential area. The Temple is easily accessible both by private and public transportation. Within walking distance of the Temple are two branches of the New York Public Library, the Queens Botanical Garden, Kissena Park, and Flushing Meadow Park, and the Main Post Office. The Flushing Council on Culture and the Arts is a stone’s throw away from the Temple, while the Queens Museum is a short ride away by automobile or subway.
The temple  has 11  well  trained  Priests.
Temple Address : 45-57 Bowne Street, Flushing, NY 11355. Phone: (718) 460-8484 Ext 112 Fax: (718) 461-8055
Temple Hours : Weekdays 8:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m. Weekends 7:30 a.m. - 9:00 p.m.