Translation and Commentary of Manavala Mamuni; Critical Evaluation of the Theo-Philosophy of the Post-Ramanuja Srivaishnavism: J. Rangaswami; Sharada Publishing House, 2094/165, Ganeshpura, Tri Nagar, Delhi-110035. Rs.1950.
Srivaishnava philosophy of the post-Ramanuja period had an interesting growth. What was adumbrated by Ramanuja in his Gadyas received a detailed and categorical exposition at the hands of great teachers like Pillai Lokacharya and Vedanta Desika. The compositions of the mystic saints Azhvars received greatest attention during this period. Works highlighting the essential doctrines under the name Rahasya were composed in Manipravala (Sanskritised Tamil). This may be described as the golden period of the Manipravala style. Since many Sanskrit words do not have a correct parallel in Tamil, ancient writers resorted to this method of blending Sanskrit and Tamil. This gave the Tamil language, a rare charm and dignity. Pillai Lokacharya wrote 18 Rahasyas. Of these, the Srivachanabhushana, Tattvatraya and the Mumukshuppadi are important, and among them the first work is the magnum opus of the great writer. The credit of commenting on this important Rahasya text goes to Manavala Mamuni (1370-1444).
Srivacanabhusanam, the magnum opus with its authentic commentary exhaustively elucidates the intrinsic means and teachings of the three Rahasya Mantras of Tirumantra, Dvaya Mantra and Caramasloka. The book explicitly condenses the metaphysical and theological doctrines of Alvars; dialectical views of Vedantic order; devotional attitudes of Itihasa-puranas; socio-cultural and linguistic textures of indigenous literature. This polemic work factually elaborate religious themes with panoramic outlook: 1. Theo-philosophy behind Goddess Sri Laksmi and the aesthetic qualities of Lord Sriman Narayana. 2. Prapatti, the complete surrender to the Lord. 3. Routines of the prapanna and the necessities to perform the kainkarya ‘service’. 4. Characteristic features & the pleasing conduct between the good teacher and the subject matters. 5. Innate nature of the Lord’s nirhetukakripa. 6. Need of acaryabhimana. Apart form these, the esoteric text with its scientific treatments towards varnasrama-dharma, regulates mankind towards Universal Brotherhood with cosmopolitan societal perspectives.