I thank Major General M.N. Sree Ram and other members of
Late Sri M.R. Narasimhan’s family for the great honour they have
bestowed upon me by inviting me to write a Foreword to the new reprint
of the 2nd Edition of SRIMAN NARAYANEEYAM text in Sanskrit
published in 1964, with word for word Tamil Translation in prose order
by Late Brahmashri N. Somasundara Dikshitar, Senior Sanskrit Pundit,
MNK Memorial High School, Chitalamcheri in Palghat District, Kerala.
The First Edition of this book was brought out by that incomparable
pioneering banker and philanthropist Late Sri M.N. Ramaswamy Iyer
in 1954. Sri M.N. Ramaswamy Iyer was the father of Late Sri M.R
Narasimhan and grandfather of Major General M.N. Sree Ram.
The Second Edition of SRIMAN NARAYANEEYAM came
out in January 1964. Honrable Justice Sri S. Ramachandra Iyer, the then
Chief Justice of Madras High Court wrote a Foreword to the Second
Edition and paid a rich tribute to the services rendered by the
Late Sri M.N. Ramaswamy Iyer to the sacred cause of promotion of
Hindu religion by bringing out authentic editions of Srimad Valrniki
Ramayana and Srimad Bhagavatham Dasamam with word for word
translation into Tamil.
In this context it would be appropriate to quote the words of
Chief Justice S. Ramachandra Iyer: ?The Late Sri M.N Ramaswami Iyer
had done a great service to the religious literature of the world and to
the Hindu religion in particular, when he brought out correct editions
of Srimad Valmiki Ramayana and Srimad Bhagavatham Dasamam with
word for word translation into Tamil. No less significant has been
his later publication of Sri Narayana Bhattathiri’s Narayaneeyam: a
great work condensing Srimad Bhagavatham in the form of beautiful
SRIMAN NARAYANEEYAM is a medieval Sanskrit text,
comprising a summary study in poetic form of the Bhagavata Purana.
It was composed by Melpathur Narayana Bhattathiri, a devotee-poet
who lived in the Indian state of Kerala, in the 16th century AD. The
Bhagavata Purana is a major Hindu scripture consisting of about 18,000
verses, authored by the great Sage Veda Vyasa and mainly devoted to the
worship of Lord Krishna.
SRIMAN NARAYANEEYAM condenses the Bhagavata Purana into
1034 verses, divided into one hundred dasakas, or cantos, each dasakam
consisting of about 10 slokas. The refrain in the last sloka of every dasaka
is a prayer to Him to remove the ailments and sufferings. Narayaneeyam
is in praise of Lord Narayana (Vishnu). Narayaneeyam is a summary of
the Bhagavatha and its parayana (reading) confers great benefits; it is an
effective faith therapy. It makes one God’s conscious, its concerns are mainly
about our present life - Aarogyam (health and freedom from diseases) and
To Guruvayur Temple, SRIMAN NARAYANEEYAM is of
utmost importance. No work of this magnitude has ever been dedicated
and addressed to the deity of any other temple in India. It offers to the
devout devotee an opportunity to visualise and worship Maha Vishnu by
reading it or listening to its rendition. The day on which Narayaneeyam
was completed, 28th Vrichikam, according to the Malayalam calendar,
is celebrated by the Guruvayur Devaswom with great enthusiasm and
splendour as NARAYANEEYAM DAY every year.
SRIMAN NARAYANEEYAM occupies a very high place in Sanskrit
literature, both because of the intense devotional fervor of the verses, and
because of their extraordinary literary merit. SRIMAN NARAYANEEYAM
is one of the most popular religious texts in Kerala, and devout Hindus often
recite it together in festivals and in religious gatherings. Melpathur Narayana
Bhattathiri composed it in adoration of the presiding Deity of the shrine of
Guruvayoor,by Sri Guruvayoorappan?. It is said that the work of SRIMAN
NARAYANEEYAM has the blessings of Lord Sri Guruvayoorappan.
Melputhur Narayana Bhattathiri was born in 1560 in a village
near the temple of Tirunavaya in Kerala. He composed the SRIMAN
NARAYANEEYAM at the age of 27. Other monumentalworks by Bhattathiri
include a treatise on Sanskrit Grammar, entitled Prakriyasarvasva, a work
similar to the Siddhanta Kaumudi, but written earlier. Bhattatiri composed
many other devotional hymns, as well as a work on Purva-Mimamsa entitled
Manameyodaya, and panegyrics in praise of his royal patrons.
**Contents and Sample Pages**
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