[Advaita-l] Fwd: My father

V Subrahmanian v.subrahmanian at gmail.com
Tue Mar 29 00:12:50 CDT 2016

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: V. Krishnamurthy <profvk at yahoo.com>
Date: Tue, Mar 29, 2016 at 8:20 AM
Subject: RE: My father
To: V Subrahmanian <v.subrahmanian at gmail.com>


This contains an account of my father’s last moments.  See Flashes of My
Life – 7.

And here is a small account of his profile:

Shri R. Visvanatha Sastri (1882–1956), worked in the judicial department of
South Arcot District in the erstwhile Madras Province of British India and
retired as Sub-Court Sheristadar  in 1939. Even when he was in his twenties
he had been, during summer vacations, studying under the feet of Shri Shri
Vasudeva Brahmendra of Ganapati Agraharam, Tanjore District. He had his
training in the Bhashyas of Adi Sankaracharya in the conventional manner of
*Guru-kula-vAsam* under the lotus feet of that Guru of his. He had also
been sitting as a public witness-listener to the Bhashya teachings given to
Shri Chandrasekharendra Saraswati (now called Kanchi Maha Swamigal, then
the new and young head of the Mutt) in the early decades of the 20th
century at the Kanchi mutt, Kumbakonam. By age 32 or so he had already
started his own Vedantic expositions. During his lifetime he gave numerous
lectures and expositions of the scriptures including several *SaptAhas*
(seven-day expositions) of the Shrimad BhagavataM and *navAhas* (nine-day
expositions) of the Valmiki Ramayana at various places in the present
Tamilnadu and Kerala and also in some north Indian locations. One such
event is recalled by him with pride in his autobiographical notes. In the
early thirties (October 1934) he gave a fifteen-day exposition of the
Bhagavatam at the *Mani-karnika* ghat in Varanasi in the beatific presence
of the Kanchi Maha Swamigal who was then on his first all-India tour.

Shri Visvanatha Sastri has left 27 original manuscripts  in *Sanskrit*
expounding the *advaita* school of thinking and its symbiosis with Bhakti.
The longest of them all is *Gita-amrita-mahodadhi*. It is a marathon
treatise on *advaita* through the medium of the Gita and the Upanishads. It
consists of 2400 *Anushtup* slokas divided into five chapters. He wrote the
whole manuscript as was his custom always, in the Grantha script of the
Sanskrit language. The resulting manuscript (running up to 879 pages of
notebook size writing) now contains both the original *shloka*s of the
author and his own Sanskrit commentary (*vyakhyana*) in prose. The copy of
the original manuscript of 2400 slokas alone is with the Kanchi Mutt
Library. In order that the work may have a wider reading, the whole work
has now been manually transcribed into Devanagari script by the son. A copy
of this has been deposited (Nov.1998) with the Kuppusami Sastri Research
Institute, Tiru Vi Ka Salai, Mylapore, Chennai, 600004, India, so that
posterity may not miss it. A scanned copy as written originally in Grantha
script is available in the files section of the advaitin yahoo-group.

With regards,


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