Author Topic: A Jesuit Father and Tiruvachakam  (Read 2548 times)

Subramanian.R

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A Jesuit Father and Tiruvachakam
« on: February 26, 2009, 09:26:44 AM »
Several members of Christian missionary came to the then Madras
Presidency during British rule and they started schools, established
churches, opened hospitals etc., Many of them, started learning Tamil, primarily to communciate to the local people.  In fact, Bible
was translated into Tamil during this time.  The Biblical Tamil is very delightful to read with a lot of Sanskritized Tamil words.  Some of the Jesuit fathers showed interest in Tamil devotional literature.  One such person took up Tiruvachakam.  He was living in  Tirunelveli, where Saiva Siddhantam first flourished in South.  Soon he lost himself in Tiruvachakam and he was reading the book as regularly as he would read Bible.  One Dr.G.U. Pope even translated Tiruvachakam in English blank verses, and this came in 1990!  This Jesuit father found Saivism which speaks primarily of love for fellow beings, even animals, birds and plants, quite true and attractive as these are also said in Christian theology. 

He became quite sick in his old days.  He was death bed.  One morning, he asked his servant to bring Tiruvachakam and read the famous, Adaikala Pathu, verse 8, (The Decad of Surrender)
which reads as: Maavadu vahiranna kaNNi panga, nin malar adike kooviduvay kumbikke iduvai....

O the Consort of the woman, with eyes like cut-baby mango like eyes, You call me,
To your lotus feet or place me in hell, I do not know Your Will,
My heart is tossing like a shuttle in weaver's machine and is crying,
O I will be lost, O Lord, this slave is in your surrender!

Arunachala Siva.

After listening to this verse, tears gushed from his eyes and he passed away!       

DRPVSSNRAJU

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Re: A Jesuit Father and Tiruvachakam
« Reply #1 on: February 26, 2009, 10:27:27 AM »
What is there in labels like one is Christian or Hindu,what counts is devotion to the ultimate reality which is "one".The Jesuit father Pope is a blessed one.
pvssnraju

Ganesh_b01

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Re: A Jesuit Father and Tiruvachakam
« Reply #2 on: February 26, 2009, 09:29:55 PM »
Very touching story...

Subramanian.R

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Re: A Jesuit Father and Tiruvachakam
« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2009, 10:10:19 AM »
Dear Ganesh_b01,

Dr. G.U. Pope's English translation of Tiruvachakam, came in 1890.
Even today, it is considered to be the best English translation in versified form on Tiruvachakam.  Dr. Vanmika Nathan has also done
a English verse translation and a Tamil prose translation.

Arunachala Siva.