Nurturing sampradaya through publishing

Published in the Hindu, 29 November 2018

[This is a profile of Sri T. V. Rangarajan, a well-wisher of Srimad Andavan Ashramam, which appeared in the Hindu after LIFCO Publishers awarded the tite ‘Sri Ramanuna Sevashri’ to him.]

Growing up in Thiruvaiyaru, T.V. Rangarajan came to Madras for his collegiate education and then worked for an eveninger, where he brought out many specials relating to the Sri Vaishnava sampradaya.

For the centenary of His Holiness Sri Tirukkudandai Andavan, Rangarajan digitised a Tiruppvaai upanaysam series of the Pontiff. His Holiness Sri Srimushnam Andavan asked him to condense the content and bring it out as a book.

Sri Srimushnam Andavan suggested that Rangarajan should head a magazine devoted to Sri Vaishnavism, and thus was born Vainavan Kural.The magazine was launched with blessings from the Pontiffs of Andavan Ashramam and Ahobila Mutt.

Sri Andavan swami told Rangarajan that the magazine should eschew sectarian differences, and so the masthead of the magazine does not even have the distinguishing Sri Vaishnava mark — the tiruman.

Contributors to the magazine are from both Tenkalai and Vadakalai traditions. Vainavan Kural is now into its 10th year and they also have an English edition. Rangarajan and his brother Kalyanaraman, who is the publisher of the magazine, have brought out many rare books.

In 1921, V. K. Ramanujachariar, who studied under His Holiness Sri Terazhundur Andavan, had written a book on Bhagavath Vishayam, with many details including information on grammatical usages. The book was unavailable for many decades.

The present Sri Karyam of Ahobila Mutt, Dr. S. Padmanabhan located a copy, and Rangarajan published it in 2012. It is part of the prescribed syllabus for the Vaishnavism course in Madras University and SASTRA university.

A book explaining all references to Lord Narasimha in the Divya prabandham and Navalpakkam Vasudevachariar’s presentation of Sri Bhashya in simple Tamil are among the many valuable books published by Vainavan Kural. Rangarajan plans to have a few pages devoted to Sanskrit lessons in each issue of Vainavan Kural.