Friday, 5 October 2012

Ayya Vaikundar

In 1809 a child was born to the couple Ponnu Nadar and Veiyelal in south India, at Swamithoppe in the Kanyakumari District(part of Travancore then). They were very poor. They initially named the child Mudisoodum Perumal, meaning "Lord Vishnu with a crown", but due to objections from those of higher castes, the family changed his name to Muthukutty.

The religious book, Akilam, tells of a legend of a child who was born dead, and then the soul of the deva Sampooranathevan was placed in the body. According to the legend, the parents found the child still for a time immediately after birth, then the child began behave normally. Thereafter, that boy grew up called Muthukutty in human history, and Sampooranathevan in Ayyavazhi mythology.

Muthukutty, a religious boy, had special interest in the worship of Vishnu. The holy book Akilam mentions that he had set a pedestal for Lord Vishnu in his house and worshipped the deity devoutly.[9] At the age of seventeen, Muthukutty married Thirumalammal from the nearby village of Puviyur, and started a family with her. However, some believe that they were not married at all, but that, she had come to live with him only to serve him during his public activities.[10] Thirumalammal had been previously married, but left her former husband to marry Muthukutty. According to quotes found in Akilam, they had a male child, who was sired by her first husband. Muthukutty earned his living as a Palmyra palm climber and as an agricultural laborer.

The transformation

 In his twenty-fourth year, Muthukutty was struck by a severe illness and suffered for a year. His mother took her sick son to the temple at Thiruchendur, during a festival in Thiruchendur. There, Muthukutty went in to the sea and disappeared. The parents searched for his body for a whole day. According to legends, on the third day, Vishnu appeared on the sea-shore. On seeing him, Muthukutty's mother mistook him for her son and tried to embrace him. But the god told her that he was no longer her son, but the son of Narayana.[13] Then he started walking towards Detchanam. This place became a holy place for the devotees of Ayyavazhi and they erected a temple there named Avatharappathi at Thiruchendur. This event is celebrated during the festival of Ayya vaikundar avataram.

Five Citars

Ayya Vaikundar has five disciples (citars). According to Akilattirattu Ammanai the Pandavas of previous Dwapara Yukam was made to take birth in this Kali Yukam as Citars of Vaikundar. They are:

    Dharma Citar
    Bhima Citar
    Arjunan Citar
    Nakulan Citar
    Sakatevan Citar


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