Hari Sarvothama Vayu Jivothama
Sri Sri Raghavendra Gurubyo Namaha
This article is all about the famous place “Shenbakkam Navabrindhavana” which is not much known among us these days,though it was very famous Centuries back. This place was once a hub for teaching Sastras/Vedas/Patta/Pravachane which spread the uniqueness of Tatvavaadha philosophy . This is the same place where Madhva Saints, Kings, Muslim(Mughal) rulers all did their yatha shakthi seva to the living Saints here. This was the place where River Palar was flowing with full of energy. This is the place which gives us Peace, Strength & most importantly Bhakthi towards Lord Sri Harih. This place has procured such a great fame&importance. You might ask what is that speciality?! Yes Readers this place is heaven of South India, we all are now going to read this article and later you will come to know the truth behind the same.It is my pleasure/Bhagya to pen down this information with my very little knowledge.
About Vellore, Shenbakkam:
Shenbakkam is located on the banks of the river “Palar”,Vellore district. It is located around 130Kms from Chennai and 200 Kms from Bangalore.
Importance of this place:
This place is famous for more than 800 years. This place is fortunate to get the foot prints of various holy Madhva Saints. Jagadguru Sri Madhvacharya said to be here for sometime and visited the place. Sri Vyasa Tirtha did his installation of Sri Hanumantha at the same place. Kalyyuga Kalpatharu/Kamadhenu Mantralaya mahaprabhu Sri Raghavendra Swamiji stayed in this place for 14 days and did pooja of the holy saints.
Shenbakkam Veera Hanumantha Swamy- installed by great saint Sri VyasaTirtha
Sri Vyasaraja Tirtha was the favoured and respected Rajaguru of four emperors of historical Vijayanagar empire. Sri Vyasaraja consecrated 732 idols of Hanuman throughout our bharatha desha starting his very first installation at Hampi Yenthrodharakka(near Anegundi,Navabrindhavana).
Similar to Angegundi Navabrindhavana we can also find Veera Hanumantha Swamy temple installed by HIS holiness Sri Vyasaraja Tirtha at Shenbakkam(near Shenbakkam Navabrindhavan). Sri Vijayanagar rulers (Tuluva Naranayak/Krishnadevaraya) were with Sri Swamiji and did their seva as it is known that Sri Vyasatirtha has protected Vijayanagara kingdom from evil powers. Sri Vyasaraja Tirtha visited Vellore Shenbakkam and did the installation of Hanumantha on the banks of the River Palar. HIS holiness could have predicted much before that there would be 9 Madhva saints going to reside near this temple after generations as he has aproksha gyana to predict the future. And importantly for Sri Vyasatirtha it is not a big thing to have this power as he himself is an avatara of Shankukarna, had an amsha of Sri Prahaladharu and avesha of Sri Hanumantha.
Readers, please note by this information we have discovered total of ‘222’ temples across South India. Click here to see all the information.
About Navabrindhavana or Navavrundhavana:
Navabrindhavana(Nava=9 + brindhavana=holy shrine) is defined as a place where Nine Moola brindhavanas of Sri Madhva saints are found/buried under earth. There are three famous Navabrindhavana’s in South India which are shown below,
1. Anegundi Navabrindhavana,Hospet Dist,Karnataka.
2. Navajeeva brindhavana of Erode,Tamilnadu. Click here to read our earlier article to know more.
3. Shenbakkam Navabrindhavana,Vellore,Tamilnadu.
Shenbakkam Navabrindhavan Saints :
- Sri Sripathi Tirtha
- Sri Sri Kambalur Ramachandra Tirtha
- Sri Sri Vidyapathi Tirtha
- Sri Sri Sathyadhiraja Tirtha
- Brindhavans of Four Bidi Sanyasis who were shishyas of Sri Sri Sathyadhiraja Tirtha
- Mrithika brindhavan of Sri Sri Raghavendra Swamin which makes the total of holy ‘9’ brindhavanas.
We can now see the greatness of each & every saint of Shenbakkam Navavrundhavana.
1. Sri Sripathi Tirtha[1594-1612]:
This great Saint was in peeta and did Samasthana pooja from 1594-1612. HIS holiness considered to be the 4th saint after great Sri Vyasaraja Tirtha. HIS gurugalu is none other than Sri Lakshmikantha Tirtha of Penukonda(A.P).[As you might know Sri Lakshmikantha Tirtha was also a great saint who stayed most of his time at Penukonda and took special care of nearly 300 idols of Hanuman temples which was installed by Sri Vyasatirtha]. Sripathi Tirtha decided to stay at Shenbakkam in banks of the River Palar and was doing samasthana pooja/Patta pravachane. The nearby lands at Shenbakkam was all donated from Government to Mutt during his period.
- Sri Sripathi Tirtha at Tirumala:
Once Sri Sripathi Tirtha went to Tirumala and was offering mangalaarthi to Thimmappa. His holiness prayed Lord to show a perfect disciple for him who could take over SRI mutt after his period. At that time HIS holiness noticed that Sri Vijayindra Tirtha’s disciple Sri Ramachandra who was standing in a long queue. Sri Ramachandra did all his sastra patta/Veda adhyana/Mimamsa directly under the control of Sri Ajaya Vijayindra Tirtha(Kumbakonam). Sri Ramachandra looked like bright Sun with all Gyana and thus Sri Sripathi Tirtha decided that no one other than Sri Ramachandra could take over the Mutt in a better way, and seeked the permission of Sri Vijayindra Tirtha to proceed. Those who dont know about Sri Vijayindra Tirtha should please click here to read about this great Mahan.
2. Sri Kambalur Ramachandra Tirtha: [1575-1635]
“Padavakyapramanajnan sausheelyadyupashobhithan Vijayeendrakhyayatheen seve vidyaagurun mama” #Introductory stanzas to his holiness commentary on Sriman Nyaya Sudha of Sri Jayatirtha.
The above sloka clearly shows his holiness Sri Sri Kambalu Ramachandra Tirtha was direct shishya of Ajaya Sri Vijayindra Tirtha mahaprabhu.
All knowing Ajaya Vijayindra Tirtha[who was mastered in 64 arts, who was himself a shishya of great lion in Dvaita-Sri Vyasa Tirtha. Sri Vijayindra Tirtha was paramagurugalu of Mantralaya Saint Sri Raghavendra Swamiji] gave Sanyashrama to Sri Ramachandra and sent him to the place of Sri Sripathi Tirtha. Sri Sripathi Tirtha thanked Lord Sri Hari for giving a valuable shishya to SRI Mutt and named him as “Kambalur Sri Ramachandra Tirtha” . Kambalur is said to be a place in A.P since Sri Swamiji was staying there for sometime.
- Greatness of Sri Kambalur Ramachandra Tirtha :
HIS holiness was fifth from succession after great saint Sri Vyasarajaru. Sri Ramachandra Tirtha was a great debater in vaadha and did stapanae of Tatvavaadha philosophy. His holiness is said to be from Kavillipalayam,Sathyamangalam,Erode district. His holiness defeated many other philsophies and proved that Tatvavaadha is the ultimate true philosophy which will take all of us to Moksha, nothing else.
Readers, please click here to quickly go through our previous article on great Swamiji.
Sri Swamiji did 20 years of his samasthan pooja and attained brindhavana near his Gurugalu “Sri Sripathi Tirtha”.
- Works of Sri Ramachandra Tirtha:
1. Ekadashi Nirnaya
2. Sri Rg bhashya Tippani.
3. Srimadh Mahabharatha Tatparya Nirnaya Tippani.
4.Srimadh Bhagavatha Vyaakarna
5.Sriman Nyayasudha Vivruthi
6.Tatva Prakashi Teeka
- Saints who lived during the period of Sri Kambalur Ramachandra Tirtha:
Sri Vidhyadheesha Tirtha, Sri Vedhanidhi Tirtha, Sri Sudeendra Tirtha & Sri Raghavendra Tirtha were the most famous Madhva Saints lived during the time of our Swamiji. It should be also noted that Sri Swamiji has taught important Vyakaranas to our Mantralaya Saint Sri Raghavendra Swamiji.
- Shishyas of Sri Swamiji:
1. Sri Narasimha Udayaru
2. Sri Rathna gardbha Udayaru
Vandharu Kalpatharavae Vadheekairava Bhanavae | Sri Ramachandra Guruvae Namaha karunya sindhuvae ||
3. Sri Vidhyapathi Tirtha:
Sri Swamiji belongs to Sri Uttaradhi Mutt parampare. Sri Swamiji was a great saint who dedicated his life by spreading the Dvaita philosophy. Sri Swamiji decided to do Pooja and stayed at Shenbakkam Navabrindhavana and spent his last days & attained brindhavana.
4. Sri Sathyadhiraja Tirtha:
Sri Swamiji was one of the shishyas of Sri Sathyavara Tirtha. Sri Swamiji knowing the greatness of Sri Vidhyapathi Tirtha decided to stay at Shenbakkam and did pooja for many years. His holiness said to be a master in Sastra and considered to be a aproksha Gyanin. People who stayed around knew that His holiness had a thapa shakthi which would cure any disease and he even proved the same in an incident.
- Miracles performed by Sri Swamiji:
Arcot Nawab was ruling the City of Vellore during the period of HIS holiness Sri Sathyadhiraja Tirtha. At that time his Son was in death bed and Nawab was very much worried that his son was about to die in few hours. At that time, Nawab decided to have dharshan of Sri Sathyadhiraja Tirtha. Nawab went to the place and begged our Srigalu to recover his Son from serious ill. HIS holiness who was famous for his Vairagya,thapashakthi went to the place directly and mediated upon Lord Sri Hari Vayu for few minutes and sprinkled holy Tirtha from his Kamandala. The boy who was about to die got up immediately and the King fell at the feet of Sri Swamiji for saving his Child. The crowd who were watching the incident all felt happy spread the greatness of Sri Swamiji.
- Nawab’s donation to SRI Mutt:
After the above miracle Nawab decided to donate an amount of Rs.1/-per day daily, which was the expense of SRI Mutt for one day during the period of Sri Swamiji. The King continued to worship Sri Swamiji for many years. Readers, please note till date an amount of Rs.365/- year has been given by the Government in order to respect the rich tradition and in order to respect Nawab’s order. Knowing the powers of Sri Swamiji all the Religions esp Muslims, who were coming to Navabrindhavan and did namaskara to Swamijis in order of respect, but that practice is not seen now days due to various factors.
- Secret behind Vellore fort:
If you dont know about Vellore Fort go directly here before proceeding this paragraph. Vellore Fort was constructed during the period of Kings Bommireddy & Timmireddy Nayaks. Do you know that this fort still stands strong because of the blessings of Sri Sathyadhiraja Tirtha Swamiji? Yes, it is because of HIS holiness powers. When the Kings initially constructed the Fort the stones/ bricks did not stand properly due to the erosion in the soil. The Kings called up those days Architects and proceeded the Construction but all their pain ended in vain unfortunately. Finally they decided to have dharshan of Sri Swamiji who was staying at Shenbakkam. Sri Swamiji mediated Lord and asked the Kings to construct the Fort with little Brindhavanas in between the fort(see the pictur). They did as per the advice of Sri Swamiji and the Fort which you see today stands beautiful/strong till the date because of Sri Swamiji blessings. Such is the greatness of Sri Swamiji & his powers.
5. Bidi Sanyasis of Uttaradhi Mutt:
There are four moola brindhavanas(see below for names) of shishyas of Sri Sathyadhiraja Tirtha who all did seva to great Swamiji Sri Sathyadhiraja Tirtha and decided to attain brindhavana below the holy feet of HIS holiness.
1. Sri Kesava Udyaru
2. Sri Govindha Madhva Udayaru
3. Sri Bhoovaraha Udayaru.
4. Sri Raghunatha Udayaru
6. Mrithika brindhavana of Sri Raghavendra Swamiji:
It is said whenever we do smarane of Sri Raghavendra Swamiji there will not be any problem in our life. Sri Raghavendra Swamy at Shenbekkam is very famous and has been doing many miracles daily to his sincere devotees. Those who did seva to Sri Rayaru have got the blessings of Sri Swamiji. People strongly believe that presence of Sri Swamiji is felt as his holiness himself had visited this place before and stayed for sometime. Getting his holiness blessings is very well possible if we have bhakthi on him. That is true and fact and no one can deny that!!
In the year 1993 – June 9th Wednesay Rayaru mritika brindhavan was constiructed with the blessings all the Swamijis and Prathishtapana was done by Sri Vignananidhi Tirtharu of Sripadaraja Mutt.
As you have seen Kings Bommireddy, Timmireddy & Muslim rulers all donated acres of land to Sri Mutt and its still protected. We could also see a place in the above picture that a huge bhojana shala for all Vidyarthis found inside the compound near the banks of river.
Sri Raghavendra Swamigala Aradhane celebrations:
Sri Raghavendra Swamigala aradhane is celebrated throughout our bharatha on 21,22 & 23rd of August-2013. Shenbakkam Trustees are requesting all of us to participate in this year brindhavana in order to invoke Navabrindhavan Swamijis blessings. Click below picture to blow up the Aradhane invitation from them.
How to Reach Shenbakkam:
Raya Vellore, Shenbakkam is located nearly 135 kms from Chennai and around 200Kms from Bangalore. Shenbakkam is a small town in Vellore situated on the Bangalore <> Chennai highway. When you come from Chennai you have to cross three intersection(flyovers) and take right turn on the service lane. There will be sign boards which will guide us to reach the Navabrindhavana. You can also check with the people there who will surely help you to reach the Brindhavana.
Sri Gururaghavendra Brindhavana Seva Trust,Dhakshina Navabrindhavan,
Sri Madhvavijaya Nagara, Shenbakkam, Vellore -632008
Contact numbers: Managing Trustee-Sri Suresh Babu(9443104959), Chairman Trustee-Sri Basker(9486621440).
I have uploaded pictures taken during our Yatra. Readers can click here to go directly to Google Picassa. Few pictures are courtesy of SRI Mutt.
Video of Navabrindhavan:
The trustees of Shenbakkam have published video DVD with the name “Vellore Dhakshina Mantralaya” and the same costs around 55 Rs. This video runs around 27 minutes and gives the information about the history of Sri Mutt. I would suggest you to buy one. Please call any of the contact numbers and request them to ship the same to your address(check if that is possible).
Places to visit nearby:
- Sri Swayambu Vinayaka Temple,Shenbakkam. Click here to see the wikimap. Please note Shenbakkam Navabrindhavana is very close to this temple. Distance#2 kms from Navabrindhavan.
- Sri Veera Hanuman Temple installed by Sri VyasaTirtha & Moola brindhavana of Sri Sathyavijaya Tirtha Mahan, Sathyavijayanagaram,Arni Dist.Click here to know more.Distance#41Kms from Navabrindhavan.
- Sri Veera Hanuman Temple installed by Sri VyasaTirtha & Moola brindhavana of Sri Sankarshana Wodeyaru,Karapoondi,Polur,Thiruvannamalai Dist.Click here to know more.Distance#Around 50kms from Navabrindhavan.
- Sri Arunachaleswarar temple,Thiuvannamalai.Distance#Around 90Kms from Navabrindhavan.
- Moola Brindavana of Sri Ragoothama Swamigalu,Tirukoilur.Click here to know about HIS holiness.Distance#Around 120Kms from Navabrindhavan.
- Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy & Sri Veera Hanuman Temple installed by Sri VyasaTirtha,Tirukoilur. Distance#Around 2kms from Sri Raghootamara brindhavana. Distance#Around 125Kms from Navabrindhavan.
- Moola Brindavana of Sri Sathyanatha Tirtharu,Veeracholapuram.Distance#Around 130Kms from Navabrindhavan.
- Kanchi Varadharaja Swamy Temple,Kanchipuram. Distance#Around 70 Kms from Navabrindhavan.
Let us sincerely pray all the Holy saints and invoke the blessings of Sri Vyasatirtha anthargatha Sri Madhvacharya anthargatha Sri Lakshmi Narasimha swami.
Please write your comments/suggestions in order to improve my blogging skills.
—In the service of Sri Hari Vayu Gurugalu,
Venkatesh Rajendra Rao.
-May the great teacher,Sri VyasaTirtha,be our guide&protector,to grant all our desires.