Some clarifications ...
  • Dear Venkatesh and Satish,

    Thanks for your mails. We requested to notify our mistakes in the
    past. You did it. This helps us to correct ourselves.

    Dear VK and Shankaran,

    That is the right attitude towards finding truth. Keep it up.

    Dear All,

    Since, there were some discussions and finger pointing based on an
    article published in our, we feel it is our
    responsibility to explain. So, I take this opportunity to clarify
    certain things happening for past 1 year on behalf of varalaaru team.

    1. Regarding Buddha and Rajaraja photos

    When we made trip to thanjavur and pazhaiyaarai last year by this
    time, some of us accepted that the person in thanjavur painting was
    Rajaraja and the person in panchavan madhevi pallippadai was
    Rajendra based on the location and 'who else it could be' basis. But
    for some of us, it was not convincing proof. So, i just wanted to
    let them understand what all they have to accept if they start
    accepting without considering other negative evidences. So, I posted
    a picture of Buddha statue with chakra mark in it. As Rajaraja also
    had sangu chakra rekhai in his palms according to Thiruvalangadu
    copper plates, i told it has to be considered as Rajaraja. People
    started disproving the statement and gave valid points why it cannot
    be Rajaraja. I was happy and hoped that people would apply the same
    rules for the issues raised during the trip too. So, I ended the
    drama with explanation of my actual intention.

    Swetha oru dheerkka dharisi. Her words

    "Kamal, neenga Japan ponalum intha pavam ungalai uruthu vanthu

    has become true now. I have changed the description of the pictures.
    So, new members won't get misguided.


    2. Rajaraja and Karuvoor thevar painting

    It was told that the young man and old man in thanjavur painting
    were Rajaraja and his spiritual guru Karuvoor thevar. But from
    inscriptions of Rajarajeswaram, we knew that Rajaraja's guru
    was 'Eesana siva pandithar' and not Karuvoor thevar. Karuvoor thevar
    was not mentioned in any of Rajaraja period inscriptions. It clearly
    proves that there was no relationship between Rajaraja and
    Karuvooraar even if a person by name Karuvoor thevar lived during
    that period. Thiruvisaippaa was quoted for proof. When i went
    through that, i misunderstood Thirubhuvanam with Thiru poovanam.
    When Venkatesh notified that, I couldn't reply immediately as i
    became busy at work and some personal commitments. After that, new
    threads were started and i forgot to reply to that. Anyway, I accept
    that it was my mistake.


    3. Dr.Kalaikkovan magudaagamam-nu onnu illave illangararu.

    Satish wrote this in his reply to Venkateswaran Kasirajan last week.
    At first, SPS introduced Dr.Kudavoil Balu to team
    during mid 2004. Then, varalaaru team met Dr.Balu during December
    2004 and early January 2005 while bringing special issue for
    Rajarajeswaram. In all these three meetings, Dr.Balu mentioned that
    Periya koyil was built based on Magudagamam concept. We requested
    him to show the book. At that time, he said it is in Sanskrit. As of
    now, in tamilnadu, only his guru Dr.Nagasamy can read and understand
    that and even he himself cannot read it. When we met Dr.Kalaikkovan
    on 26th January in Trichy as part of our 5 days mega trip, we asked
    if he knows anything about Magudagamam. He said he also heard it
    from Dr.Balu only during Big temple Kudamuzhukku around 10 years
    ago. At that time itself he asked but couldn't see the book till
    date. Whenever we discussed with Dr.Kalaikkovan about magudagamam
    concept, he never told that it doesn't exist. He always told that he
    hasn't seen it yet. Satish joined us in one or two trips during the
    thiruvalanjuzhi research. At that time, we are not sure if
    Dr.Kalaikkovan told satish like this. Satish only knows. In his
    article also, he didn't mention that it does not exist. He just
    wanted to see it.


    4. Varalaaru article claims that rrc's life was very well documented

    Venkatesh raised this point in his reply to Satish's mail and he
    tried to disprove saying "then why are we groping in the dark about
    most of the details of his life and death?". I don't think anywhere
    in the article it is mentioned that all the events in his life were
    very well documented. It says only his significant achievements were
    documented. Though unusually Rajaraja documented extensively, we
    cannot expect him to mention when did he catch cold, how many times
    he sneezed and all. I request to read the articles properly before
    making such sweeping statements.


    5. Who else it could be? Rajaraja and Rajasimma

    In his second mail to VK, Satish quoted that when Dr.Kalaikkovan
    said that the statue of a king in Dharmaraja radham is Rajasimma
    on 'who else it could be' basis, we accepted. In the same way, when
    he said that painting in periya koyil is RRC on the same basis, we
    didn't accept. With this, he came to a conclusion that
    Dr.Kalaikkovan accepts assumptions indirectly.

    Dear Satish,

    Do you really think both 'Who else it could be' are same? I am not
    sure if you have read the book 'Adhyandha kaamam' completely.
    Otherwise, you wouldn't have raised this point. I give the summary
    of points considered before concluding it is Rajasimma. If you are
    not convinced still, it is my inability to explain as I don't have
    the book with me right now and please go through the book.

    Labeled Royal Portraits are usually met with only on prominent parts
    of the temple such as the walls or the niches. You may refer to
    Mahavaraaha temple at Mamallapuram and several other temples in the
    cholamandalam (Thiruvaavaduthurai, Thiruvisaloor, Konerirajapuram,
    etc). Dr. Kudavoil Balu himself has mentioned a few such labeled
    portraits carved on the walls of the temple towers at Chidambaram in
    his book entitled 'Goburakkalai marabu'.

    Though labeled portrait sculptures are detected so far in the greeva
    naasikaas or koodu in the kapodha, male figures worshipping linga
    are depicted in many temples. Thiruvalanjuzhi is a good example
    where one can identify many such figures. Don't you think that one
    should take much care before identifying a figure as a particular
    royal person? Is this not his duty to provide enough evidences to
    substantiate such identity before it is questioned?

    In the case of adhyandha kaamam, the creator of the temple was
    identified after
  • Hi kamal.

    pretty long mail eh?

    but I still stick to my stand.

    and it reminded me of a very apt and cute description


    Karuvoor thevar
    > was not mentioned in any of Rajaraja period inscriptions.
    It clearly
    > proves that there was no relationship between Rajaraja and
    > Karuvooraar even if a person by name Karuvoor thevar lived during
    > that period.

    if something is not mentioned in rrc kalvettu then it never happened?

    it PROVES nothing. nothing at all

    the only song of rajarajeshwaram is by karuvooraar and that is
    accepted when the thirumurais were codified in 13- 14th centuries.

    sticking only to epigraphy is a dark alley especially in tamilnadu
    where in comparison to other dynasties of the same time history was
    not recorded properly. wherever it was it was a mostly sychophancy of
    the highest order.
    other sources of history have to be examined just like the
    thirubuvanam thirupoovanam episode.

    > Venkatesh raised this point in his reply to Satish's mail and he
    > tried to disprove saying "then why are we groping in the dark about
    > most of the details of his life and death?". I don't think anywhere
    > in the article it is mentioned that all the events in his life were
    > very well documented.

    and please read kkvns article once more. the last but one paragraph
    starts with the extreme documentation of rrc and rjc's period.

    and why should I spread insinuations against you or ram for that
    matter. I am not aspiring to be an archeologist as others do.

    Even when Ram
    > asked you directly in the beach meeting, it was not responded
    > properly and topic got diverted. You said 'not only me. All of us
    > felt like that'. When I checked with some of the members, they said
    > they didn't think that Dr. Kudavoil Balu was hassled.

    did you ask swetha

    shall I quote your exact words here in which you described kudavoil's
    lecture to the group.
    if you want to refresh your memory dear kamal ask swetha.

    also look at the mails which came soon after the tanjore trip

    one thing kamal

    some people seem to think that kkvn and kudavoil are the only two
    people involved in chola history. there are hundreds who have a
    personal involvement over decades.

    there can be other schools of thought( i use the word again) other
    than these two people. just dont think that if we are not adherents to
    one of the two we follow the other.

    > 8. PSVP members got demotivated because of questions by varalaaru
    > team
    > kamal out of the 600 members in the group or the 40 members in psvp
    how many are really interested in epigraphy.
    I for one dont give it a damn.there are enough sources of history and
    other than that and there is more to history than just cholas or

    how many are even going to read my mail or yours completely.

    we are a drop in the ocean kamal and neither can we motivate or
    demoralise anybody for long

    I think this issue is getting very personal and we should continue to
    argue if need be only in the personal channel.

    with warm regards
  • Dear Kamal,

    Quite a long mail. Took a long time for me to read. All your points
    are very much valid. I am bound to reply, because my name was openly
    quoted many a times.

    First things first, I am a very poor reader, second, I have a very
    poor retention power. So even if I had read the books you quoted, i
    dont realize the points. Third, I am not a great scholor in any
    subject and I dont have even the basic knowledge to question on many
    of the points you raise. I am just like any other common man, who
    has a passion for history but not as high as yours. YOu people are
    becoming experts and proven writers, but I am not. So many of my
    words would have been on the cream and not in depth.

    > Dear Venkatesh and Satish,
    > 1. Regarding Buddha and Rajaraja photos

    Sorry to say, this was a real mockery which took everyone aback.
    Your intentions might be good, but the way it was presented was not
    good. Lets admit that.

    > *****************************************
    > 3. Dr.Kalaikkovan magudaagamam-nu onnu illave illangararu.

    Any common man like me will decipher this only as I quoted. On the
    surface, it looks like saying it doesnt exisit. As I said, I am not
    a scholar to understand such nuances of the article and its my
    mistake. Apologies.

    > 5. Who else it could be? Rajaraja and Rajasimma

    Again the above point holds good. For a common man like me same
    logic holds good. Probably, if just a gist about the difference was
    given to me or anyone like me, even an one liner, as you
    said, 'Adyantha kamam deals with this', it would have made a
    difference, rather than brushing aside the topic with a giggle.

    > *****************************************
    > 6. School of thought and ego clash
    > 7. Varalaaru team hassled Dr.Kudavoil Balu

    I dont even remember what Venkatesh claims or swetha says, or for
    that matter I even dont know what was said on that day, one thing is
    fresh in my memory even now. Do you remember my question to you all,
    I mean ALL, on the very first day of the first trip I came with you?
    It was 29 January, Sunday, evening, in the van, after a days trip
    with Dr.Kudavoil - I was new to this arena and was just observing
    what Dr.KB told and what you people questioned. THough much of that
    didnt enter my blockhead, I asked you people, 'why do you laugh for
    everything Dr.Balu says?'. Its the first impression everyone gets.
    Only after a couple of visits with you and getting to know each one
    personally, I could digest that point.

    I am extremely sorry for bringing this up, but since I am quoted, I
    am bound to respond. I was thinking that its only me who took it in
    that sense, but later came to know that(after nearly 10 months)
    everyone feels the same. Thats the first impression every one gets.
    If I am pointed one time, it can be others mistake,if I am pointed
    more than once, its my mistake.

    > 8. PSVP members got demotivated because of questions by varalaaru
    > team

    Same as above. First impression is the best impression, it could be
    wrong, but still you are making an impression, my friend. That makes
    all the difference.

    Kamal, Ram, Lavanya, Gokul and Krupa,

    I think I am one of the very few fortunate (I think I can count the
    numbers) people who know all five of you personally and I take the
    pride of knowing you all. I share a very special friendship with you
    all. Request you to contribute more and keep up the spirit of this
    group alive for the coming years. One thing, this mail is good to
    have put out everything openly. I always feel its better to pour
    out rather than taking things personally to heart.

    What the scholars say are above the heads of the common people like
    me. Thats one of the main reason history is not appreciated by many.
    You being in the younger age group can bridge this gap and make
    things simple and interesting to all. As I commented for this months, two years you have come a long way, get into the next
    orbit and try to make things simpler and intersting to all.

    As Venkatesh pointed, if anything more, lets take in the personal
    mail chain.
  • Dear All
    Its really hurting to see people getting a bit personal.I can see the consequences as I myself have been on the recieving end
    I think we are pushing things a bit too much arguement is more than welcome
    Enb Enra kelvi puratchithalaivar laways wanted but please if you really want to reason out I think its best outside the group....

    I have great respect for Kamla Venkat and Satish(though we are ever so often at loggerheads) but lets not get this into the great domain

    secondly PS group has let to a lot A Varalaru team aBig temple team earlier a PS for Project maduari team and so one and there will be many more...lets not divide us into various groups...please....

    Can we please avoid varalaru demoralises pspv type messages...

    PSPV is a organisational face of the PS group to channelise what we want to do in a organised fashoin or that was the motive ...correct me if I am wrong please SB sir am I right

    Theres no point in getting personal when all that energy could be spent on something fruitful

    Thank you

  • Friends,

    First of all Congrrats Varalaaru team.

    An article in last issue reached many and its bought up many valuable discussions here, so our varalaaru .com is a gr8 sucess, keep up the good work.


    Its as simple as , our varalaaru team having Dr.Kalikovan as their master, nothing wrong it, thier views with Dr.Kudavayil diff many times , we have seen. Its all based thier approach towards history.Let me put it like this Dr.Kudavayil balu has a style of taking history to common man, so his style and his finding may differ from others, thats dosen't mean that any of us under grading him.


    Really its a big mail.anyhow my name is also mentioned in ur mail , i feel i have to explain my views in that :

    Regarding Buddha and Rajaraja photos

    Pls take it lightly a sort of fun, in the middle of hard subject.We every one knows that

    2. Rajaraja and Karuvoor thevar painting

    As i have told earlier Karuvoor thevar is not a single person, may be that even been a title given as like Viyasar, but sure RR 's guru is not Karuvoor thevar, Guru is "Eesana siva pandithar" .

    3.Dr.Kalaikkovan magudaagamam-nu onnu illave illangararu

    Dr.Kalaikovan in his article saying that he wants a read that magudaagamam, and now we r in the process of finding that book, sure we can come back with better result in coming days. Let us wait for sometime in this pls, really its a good input and we can have some interesting inputs.

    4. Varalaaru article claims that rrc's life was very well documented

    Yes RR achivements well documented, accept still there are so many questions left, let us take it like this " May be RR is keen on documenting his achivements and not his personal life" may be thats y we have left out with questions like " what he did in between 969 to 985 , and how and where he died and all.

    But Kamal you could have posted this better way - sorry kamal

    a. Person worshipping Nataraja

    Its a long pending question, even i too remember i have asked the same to Dr.Kalaikovan in Rajarajeswaram and his reply" could be" even Gokul perosnally accepted that it should be only RR, the point we need to take up here is , that painting are fresco, and panel need to be completed in set few hrs. We can think like this " as a great person RR buliding that temple , we can feel that it should be only RR"

    But friends we have no evidence, we can feel and belive that all.

    8. PSVP members got demotivated because of questions by varalaaru

    NO , i am not accepting that, PSVP is the second line team of PS group , which is require lot of support and inputs for First line Varalaaru team.

    Let the questions come, by that way only we can understand the history, views may diff, discussion will go , i feel thats all require, we all r matured persons, been together on subject interest, we need questions , may be the questions from few like me on basic things , but our first line team responded postively , and the qestions from them giving us new lights, so let us welcome and PSVP NEVER GOT DEMOTIVATED and its welcomes the questions and open discussion as a subject matter.
  • vanakkam,

    Would request you all to give yourselves some time and let things ease
    before thinking anything on this...

    I have a 101 things to tell you.... lack of time is hampering me from
    even reading Kamal's mail fully.

    Will go through the whole mail and reply....

    I only want to say life goes on and later what seems to be huge now
    may seem to be a lot more trivial...

  • > for new comers - including such of those who flew from as far place
    > from Mumbai and enrolled membersship in PS to join the tour - such
    > differences may appear as if there is division.

    Dear SPS, Venkatesh, Satish, Kamal, Shankaran, Swetha,

    Ponniyin selvan - the book and the character both are intoxicating.

    We did get puzzled as to the differing opinions on various issues. We
    understood it as the "regular" thing when many intellectuals try to
    work together!

    The Thanjavur trip did open up the floodgates of friendship, love and
    respect amongst all of us. Each one in the team was so enthusiastic,
    passionate and wanting to know more. Each one is in touch with all
    others through the group and also through personal mails. The love for
    history, especially our South Indian history is kindled in all the
    group members. Should we not consider that a success? Most of us are
    going beyond the literature and trying to learn history.

    Why dont we all patch it up with a trip to Ponniyinselvan places
    sometime soon? Starting from Veeranarayana Eeri, Kadambur and going
    through the places our dear Vandiya Thevan travelled and end the trip
    at Thanjavur?? We can top it with a visit to Thanjavur and Chennai

    I just bought a copy of "The Argumentative Indian: Writings on Indian
    History, Culture and Identity" by Amartya Sen. - Yes, we are
    argumentative and that is the best part of our tradition?? Isn't it?
    Even Upanishads have Kenopanishad where a student keeps questioning
    his teacher. Let us argue, question ( may be accept sometimes) and
    enjoy the whole process.

    How is this book by Amartya Sen? Anyone finished reading it?
  • Dear Uma,

    I completely agree with wud be great to have a trip like that starting from veeranam..i wud like to go along with the stalwarts in this group..I dont think it is possible now, considering the pressures, our members will be facing , in the working environment..but atleast, we can give it a start, so that it may become conclusive , in the months to come..
  • Hi all,

    It would be great if such trip happens soon. i would be very much part of it, if the trip gets triggered.
  • Dear All,

    I am planing to visit India during Deepavali. Will be landing on 13th Oct,
    2006 night and leaving on 29th Oct, 2006. Please plan the trip in between
    this. So that i can join you all.
  • Yes , its a good idea, We can plan a trip, Kamal and Gokul , how about ur availabilty?
  • > I am planing to visit India during Deepavali. Will be landing on
    13th Oct,
    > 2006 night and leaving on 29th Oct, 2006. Please plan the trip in
    > this. So that i can join you all.

    15th to 20th Oct.2006 is alright for me!

  • Dear SPS
  • Hello All,

    I have been really tied up at office and that is why I was unable to
    reply to this mail or the thread in the group.

    I feel this discussion itself is uncalled for. Why such a thread all
    of a sudden?

    Let me tell what I felt in the temple. It was BAD. A senior person is
    passionately talking abt one of his lifetime works and ppl pass some
    uncharitable comments... Is this correct?

    The comments that were aired included 'MGR cinema is going on'. And
    when he was describing the RWH system near the Chandikeswarar shrine
    a comment 'All this is peela, such structures exist in all temples'
    was made.

    I accept that there will always exist differences of opinion. What I
    accept, you needn't accept. But that does not give any of us the
    right to ridicule people who have a different opinion.

  • -thank you swetha for clearing this

    some people may know about history but they know the least about
    respecting age and experience and knowledge.

    the comments that were made by people who have perhaps entered this
    big temple only in the last five years or so and comments were made on
    a man whose lifetime work this was.

    I basically think this stems out of a feeling of insecurity rather
    than knowledge.
  • Hi All,

    Thank you Swetha for the clarification.

    So far, we were groping in dark since we didnt have any clue on what
    made trip members to think like that. Now, we understood the reason
    and feel relieved that we didnt do anything to insult the scholar. I
    feel sorry as my words made some of the trip members to feel upset.

    Dear SB Sir,

    > For us, you and me included, really
    > interested in knowing the Truth,
    > whatever we discuss will look alright
    > including expressions of because we
    > meet and express things quite often.
    > But for new comers - such differences
    > may appear as if there is division.

    Yes. I agree with you that the new comers won't understand because
    of lack of exposure to us and our interactions with scholars like
    Dr.Balu and Dr.Kalaikkovan. But why should this cause discomfort? If
    it is not me, you and ram, it will be some other tom, dick and
    harry, who will ask them such questions tomorrow, if not today. I
    leave it here. You know better.


    Thanks for the appreciation. But if you wait for me, it may not
    happen immediately. Even if i visit india in near future, it would
    be just 1 week or 10 days. Moreover, dont want to carry titles
    like 'people of insecured feeling' by someone again. There are
    members like satish, chandra and madan who already did some travel
    and place arrangements. And members like Tholliyal thurai Sriraman
    and Thirumurai thiruthalangkalil karai kanda Venkatesh are there to
    guide. What else can we do more than this?

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