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VYASA POOJA & CHATURMASYAM
SRI KAMAKOTI PRADEEPAM
Pooja observed by all Sanyasis is Vyasa Pooja; Vrata observed by them is Chaturmasyam. All Acharyas of Advaita, Visishtadvaita and Dvaita affiliation observe these two rituals without any distinction.
There is none who has served the world like Bhagavan Vyasa. He got his name Vyasa by dividing Vedas into four. He wrote 18 Puranas in order to explain the thoughts in Vedas clearly in a simple and detailed manner. The rare and great Itihasa which he wrote, viz. Mahabharatam is alone without parallel. The book which he authored to explain logically the intent of portions of Upanishads teaching Atmatatva (Principle of Self) is ‘Brahmasutram’. The sutras (aphorisms) in this book are the mirror of principles of Vedanta. These Brahmasutras are also known as ‘Uttara Mimamsa sastram’. Acharyas of all the three creeds have written commentaries on these sutras. Hence people of all three creeds worship Bhagavan Vyasa.
Sanyasis engaged in pursuit of Atmagnana (Self knowledge) worship, on the day of Vyasa Pournami, Bhagavan Vyasa, who compassionately blessed with explanations of Atmatatva in Sutras. They also worship the Rishis who appeared in the lineage of their Guru parampara (tradition).
As various insects moving about on the roads may die under the feet during Padayatra in rainy season, yatis (sanyasis), whose paramount dharma is Ahimsa (non-violence), do not go on Padayatra during rainy season and stay in one place. Devotees and disciples understand this and request them: During rainy season you please stay here itself; we will do all the service required. Yatis agree to their entreaty and stay there. They spend two months observing special rules with reference to food etc. This vrata is actually to be performed for four months. But it has come into practice to observe the vrata for two months or four pakshas (fortnights), reckoning a paksha to be a month. Yatis specially teach Vedantic texts during this period. Our Paramacharya calls many Pandits in Sastras and conducts Sastra Vakyarthas (discussions on true meanings). This is but proper and in fact incomparable during Pooja to Sri Veda Vyasa, who explained in detail all sastras.
This year Vyasa Pooja is observed on 27.7.1980. Kanchi Jagadguru Sri Paramacharya is conducting Vyasa pooja at Satara in Maharashtra State and Jagadguru Sri Jayendra Saraswati Swamigal at Ahmedabad in Gujarat.
M.R.Krishnamurthi Sastri, M.A. Sanskrit College, Mylapore, Chennai
Translated by: P R Kannan, Navi Mumbai
Tamil version of this article and other similar articles in Tamil can be accessed on this website at http://www.kamakoti.org/tamil/