Showing posts with label Ramanuja. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ramanuja. Show all posts

Date of Devaram (Thevaram Trio)

We are looking at the Dates of Appar, Sambandhar and Sundarar known as tevaram Trio. We are comparing the historical dates of these saints versus claims by dravidian scholars. Let us first see at the terms Thirupadiyam and Devaram.

Thirupadiyam

The earliest epigraphical reference to the recitation of Thiruppadiyam, occurs in the middle of the 9th century, in the reign of the Pallava ruler Nandivarman III circa 845 A.D. found in the Siva emple of Thiruvallam. It records the gift of a village for maintaining several services in the temple by a certain Vikramaditya Mabali Vanarayan(Bana King). It includes provisions for food offerings, the Sivabhramanas performing worship, Sribali (drummers), for makers of flower garlands, and singers of Thiruppadiyam. Four hundred kadi of paddy is prescribed as annual payment for the last two categories of services.

The word Thiruppadiyam in inscriptions is generally taken by Dravidian scholars to refer to the Tevaram hymns of Saint Appar, Sambandar and Sundarar. But Thirupadiyam Thiru(Sanskrit Sri) + Padiyam (Singing or Reading or chanting) does not translate to Devaram, it translates to singing or reading or chanting holy prayers or hymns or recitals. The Thirupadiyam is not only sung in Siva and Vaishnava temples but jain shrines too. How can Devaram a saiva work be sung in Jain temples. So the term simply means holy recitals not Devaram by the Trio.

Thirupadiyams History
When Ramanuja started spreading his philosophy, he found that most of the scholars are committed to Sankara, So Ramanuja had created 74 aharyapurushas with hereditory rights of succession to spread vishistadvaita philosophy and temple worship, in contrast to sankara's teachings. Due to paucity of scholars, non- brahmins were also given seal of authority to convert. However, Vedas were restricted to Brahmins..

"While the recitation of Vedas was the monopoly of the Brahmins the recitation of Prabandhams was made the common right of all castes and both sexes." as per Raghavacharya.



Term Devaram

The term Tevaram also occurs in a jaina context, earlier, meaning a place of worship. The term Tevaram is mentioned in Saivite context in other places.

 A 27th year record of Rajaraja I in the temple of Siva at Allur in Trichy district refers to the recitation of Thiruppadiyams by a certain Ambalattadi Thirunavukkaraiyan, at the Devara in the sthana matha of Vadakudi Mahadeva temple. The relevant portion of the text reads: (Thiru Vadakudi Mahadevar sthana mathattu Devarattukku Thiruppadiyan Vinnappam Ceyyum Ambalattadi Thiruavukkaraiyan (675 of SII VIII). The inscription is explicit in its statement that Thiruppadiyam was recited at the Devaram of the sthana matha, thereby clearly stating that the term Devaram stands for a sacred place of worship and does not refer to the devaram of the Trio.

This is further confirmed by another inscription at Tanjore, recorded in the time of Rajendra I, son of Rajaraja. Dated in the 19th year of Rajendra I, it records certain gifts made by the king while he was seated at the cloistered hall of Devara, situated in the north, of the Mudikonda cholan Palace at Gangaikondacholapuram. Obviously the Devaram mentioned here is a place of worship (domestic) within the royal palace.

Another inscription dated in the reign of Rajendra (Kullotunga I) at Manambadi-Tanjore District, a certain nangur Maraikkadan alias Patanjali Pidara, served as Devara Nayaka to Rajendra Chola. Obviously he was looking after the place of worship of the ruler. This would show that even in the 12th century the word Devaram stood for a place of worsip only and did not mean the sacred hymns of the three saints.

A record of Kiranur, Tanjore Disstrict dated in the reign of Rajaraja I, 7th year 992 A.D., states that Thiruppadiyam singer stood in front and recited, Vilakam ner Thiruppadiyami. The reciters stood in front of Devaram and sung the hymns, called Devarattu Thiruppadiyam, which during the passage of time came to be called simply Devaram, jettisioning the second member and thus the hymns themselves came to be called Devarams. The term Devaram is derived probably Devagaram i.e. place of God-worship and should have been prakritized as Devaram like Bhandagaram becoming Bhandaram and Koshtagaram becoming Kottaram.

From the examples we see that the Neither Thirupadiyam not Devaram in inscriptions refers to the hymns sung by the Trio.



Thirumurai

Thirumurai is a twelve volume compendium of hymns in the praise of Shiva by various poets in South India. Nambi Andar Nambi compiled the first seven volumes by Appar, Campantar and Cuntarar as Tevaram. During the course of time, a strong necessity was felt by scholars to compile Saiva literature to accommodate other works. Tiruvacakam and Tirukovayar by Manickavasagar is included as eighth, nine parts are compiled as ninth Tirumurai out of which most are unknown, tenth as Tirumandiram by Tirumular the famous Siddhar. Eleventh is compiled by Karaikal Ammaiyar, Cheraman Perumal and others. The contemparary Chalukya Chola king was impressed by the work of Nambi and included Nambi's work in the eleventh Tirumurai. Sekkizhar's Periya Puranam, composed a century later, contains the life depiction of all the 63 nayanmars. The response for the work was tremendous among Saiva scholars that it was included as the 12th Tirumurai. Tirumurai along with Vedas and Saiva agamas from the basis of Saiva Siddantha philosophy in Tamil Nadu. 63 Alwars and Nayanmars is a list compiled by Sekkilar in Kulothunga III court.

Periyapuranam
The Periya Puranam or Tiruttondar Puranam is a Tamil poetic account depicting the legendary lives of the sixty-three Nayanars, the poets of Tamil Shaivism. It was compiled during the 12th century by Sekkilar during the rule of Kullottonga Chola III.

Names of Saints in Inscriptions

Let us see the reciters of Thirupadiyam, whose names are recorded in inscriptions. The reciters, whose names are recorded, are seen with two names (1) the surname and (2) the diksha name (names assumed during initiation). The intiatory names show that all of them underwent Siva diksha. The diksha names include any one of the five of names of Sadasiva, as Tatpurusha Siva, Aghora Siva, Vamasiva, Isana Siva, Sadasiva, or Rudrasiva. Other names included are Netra Siva, Hrdaya Siva, Sikha, Kavaca, Jnana, Vyoma, Yoga, Dharma, Satya, Purva and Omkara all ending the honorofic Siva. Among their surnames, seven reciters bear the name Thirunavukkaraiyan, five the name Aruran. (Among the names of other 63 saints, assumed by the reciters, Sirala occurs twice and none else). The names as recorded in inscriptions are interesting. We don't come across Appar, Sundarar and sambandar in chola inscriptions.

A point of interest worthy of note is that in the temple of Tanjore, the images of 63 saints, were not consecrated. Except the images of Siruttonda with his wife and son Sirala, and the image of Miladudaiyar, other saints are not mentioned. The Period we are talking here is as early as Chalukya chola king Kulothunga.

Let us look at the Saints in Historical Context.
..

Alvars and Nayanaras
The Pantheon of Alvar came after the times of Nathamuni and Ramanuja during their time they got wide acceptance. Until then Alvar means only Nammalvar. Nammalvar Tiruvoymoli is the first prabhandhams made known to tamil world.

First Twelve Alwars

Poigai, Bhutam, Pey, Thondar-adip-podi, Tirumazhisai aka Bhaktisara, Paanan, Kulashekara, Andal, Periazhvar, Tirumangai, Nammalvar, Madhurakavi.

Natha Muni recovers these verses by yogic powers

Sriman Nathamuni happened to hear some verses of Nammalvar through some pilgrims. His desire to hear more of these songs brought him to a of the direct - disciple of Nammalvar, on whose advice Sri Nathamuni being a yogi went through yogic exercise and established direct contact with the spirit of Sri Nammalvar.

Lost works , refound
Kanda Puranam (14th century AD) says that the Devaram hyms were lost and was recovered by nambi andar nambi on the direction of Abhaya Kulasekhara from the sealed room of Chidambaram temple. However this story is exactly like the recovery of vaishnava hyms by Nathamuni(12th century AD Ancestor of Ramanuja) So it would have been most likely symbolic rather than true.

Nambi Andar Nambi.
Nambi Andar Nambi, was born in Tirunaraiyur near Chidambaram. who is said to have recovered, at the request of the Chola king, Raja Abhaya Kula-Sekhara, the Saivate canons of the three famous Devaram hymnists. It has been supposed that Nambi-Andar-Nambi was a contemporary of Rajaraja(Equating Raja Abhaya Kula sekhara). It is true his patron is said to have been a Chola king named Rajaraja Abhaya-Kulasekhara. But there is a very serious difficulty in identifying this Rajaraja with the builder of the Tanjore temple. Among the poems, which Nambi-Andar-Nambi is said to have classified, is the Tiruvisaippa, which contains a hymn on the Gangaikonda-Cholesvara temple built evidently by Rajaraja’s son Rajendra-Chola and called after his title Gangaikonda-Chola. The composer of the hymn himself must have lived after Rajaraja atleast or even Rajendra Chola; and Nambi-Andar-Nambi who classifies it along with the sacred writings of the Tamil Saivas, must certainly belong to a still later period. Since he recovers these scriptures after they are completely lost. He should at-least be a century or more later.

Manikka Vasagar Mentions Varguna
"Varagunanaam thennavan eaththum Chitrambalaththaan… " This varguna is said to be the Pandyan king who ruled in 9th century AD. But the saint does not denote any king here. Nor does he says he pandyan. But it has been equated with Varguna pandyan and his date is taken to 9th century AD. Can the king be addressed like that by his own minister?

Let us now turn our attention the aim of the article that is Date to Devaram Trio...

Appar
Appar is claimed to be contemproary of Mahendra Varman pallava based on the inscription in Tiruchi. The claims are based on these assumptions.
  1. Gundabhara and Gunadhara are same
  2. Both refer to Mahendravarman
  3. So The Gunabhara in Tiruchirapalli inscription is Mahendra pallava
  4. he moved away from evil conduct is mean to say that Jainism is evil conduct and he turned to shaiva
  5. This moving away from bad conduct is due to appar.
  6. The Same place have many jain inscriptions in earlier and subsequent periods indicating it is a Jain centre, debunking any saivite conversion.
If you see the evidence, there is nothing to suggest conversion, leave alone Appar involved in one. Let us see what other evidences contradicting them.



Mattavialasa prasanna
Mattavialasa prasanna by Mahendra Varman Pallava makes fun of Saivite and Buddhist religions.
 
Gunabhara , Gnanabhra
The Rock cut cave temple have a defaced inscription , which record King Gnanabhra, who bore the birudas purushottama, satrumalla and satyasamd ,built a temple of siva on the top of the mountain and placed in it a linga and a statue of himself. Both inscriptons mention river Kaveri.

Jain Inscriptions
Jain Inscriptions by pallavas continue after the said incident. If Mahendra Varman Pallva considered Jainism as evil way and saivite way as the correct way due to conversion by Appar. Then there should be shift inscriptions from jainism to Saivism, but there is none. Since the whole claim is that Appar and mahendra varman pallava are contemproaries, is based on this inscription. There is no evidence to suggest a conversion or subsequent inscriptions for any conversion, let alone by appar. The Jain monasteries continue to get aid from pallavas as before without any break. If evil way from which mahendra varma turned away is Jainism, there should be dip in aid to Jain Monasteries. The Aid continuous not only throughout pallava times, but also chola and Pandya times. So there is no evidence of any conversion.

Sambandar
Sambandar went to court of Koon Pandyan. He said to have defeated jains there.

Koon Pandiyan
Looking into the history of Kazimar Big Mosque of Madurai, it dates back to 13th century. Hazrat Kazi Syed Tajudin, who came from Oman, received the land where the present Masjid is situated, as donation from the then Pandya King of Madurai – Koon Pandiyan.

Jain Debate
The incident as narrated in Sekkizhar's magnum opus. As per this version,the Saivite saint Tirugnanasambandhar (TGS) debated 8,000 Jainas simultaneously. The Jainas had vowed that they would impale themselves should they lose the debate. As Per Sekkizhar they did so.

Pandyan Nedumaran also known as Koon Pandiyan was converted to Saivism by Sambandar. As per Kazimar Mosque dating Koon Pandiyan is date-able to 13th century AD.

First there is no evidence to suggest there is a debate of such large scale. And if that is true, then Sambandar should be dated to 13th century AD, not 7th century AD.
 
Thirumangai Alwar and Sambandar
Once Sambandar was staying in his mutt. Thirumangai alwar came by that side, surrounded by his followers shouting loudly the title's their leader. The followers of Sambandar asked the followers of Thirumangai alwar to maintain silence till they crossed the mutt. But Alwar became angry and went straight into the mutt. Sambandar welcomed him cordially and asked him to sing a song on the Lord Vishnu. So Alwar sang and hearing this Sambandar was spell bound and tears came running out of his eyes. He at once gave the spade (vel) which was given to him by lordess Aadhiparashakti to Alwar and requested him to continue his divine service to god. And accepted that he was apt for his titles and announcing them loudly was correct.


Thirumangai Date
Thirumangai's father was Nilam, a general under the Chola king Kochengan. Thirumangai also followed suit and became General under Chola. So His date has to be post pallava that is after 10th century AD. Thirumangai Alwar arranged for worship of Nammalvar in Sri rangam Temple. That put Thirumangai Alwar at-least a century or two Later. Thirumangai also refers to Vairamegha, the Rastrakutas. So he is definitely post 10th century AD.

Now Thirumangai Alwar cannot be dated to 7th century AD. So how can Sambandhar who is a contemporary of Thirumangai Alwar dated to such date.

Kochengan and Hiranyavarman

Kochenga's parents Subhadeva and Kamalavati prayed to Nataraja of Chidambaram temple for a male successor as per Sangam Literature. The Periyapuranam(13th Century AD) calls him the son of the Chola king Subhadeva by Kamalavati. So Kochenga is post Nataraja Temple. Earliest Historical reference to Nataraja Temple is Nandivarma pallavamalla (732-796 CE) about his father Hiranyavarma building Nataraja Temple at Chidambaram. So Chidambaram Nataraja Temple was built by Nandivarma Pallavamalla around 750 AD. Kochengan parents came to pray in this temple for male heir and thus was born Kochengan. Since Kochengan is Chola. Kochengan should be dated Post pallava. And any literature referring to Kochengan is also post pallava.


The Leyden grant calls him “a bee at the lotus feet of Sambhu (Siva).” This is shows to the fact that Sengan was considered as one of the sixty-three devotees of Siva. His name is mentioned by two of the authors of the Devaram: Sundaramurti invokes him in the Tiruttondattogai, and refers to a temple which Kochchenganan had built at Nannilam; and Tirunanasambandar mentions two other temples which the Chola king Seyyagan had built at Ambar and at Vaigal. Mr.Venkayya has found that the Nalayira-prabandham speaks of a visit of the Chola king Kochchenganan to the Vishnu temple at Tirunaraiyur.

Kalvali narpathu sung in praise of Kochengan against the battle of Kanaikal Irumporai , Chera king in the battle of Kalumalam by Poigaiyar. In the Poem poigaiyar also points out Ganesha Statue. Now According to tamil Saiva tradition Ganesh worship was introduced to tamil nadu by Siru thondar. Where do dravidian scholars date Siru thondar? , post konchengan. That is the problem, what to trust in tamil tradition as historical.

Siru Thondar -Paranjothiyar
Siru Thondar is described as Chola commander by periya purana , not pallava commander as being said by Dravidian Scholars. Paranjothi wrote Thiruvilayadal puranam. It portrays cholas, not pallavas. Paranjothi supposed to have brought the Ganesha from vatapi and introduced Ganesha worship in Tamil Nadu. But Appar and sambandar sing about Ganesha. It is in Thirupadigam. No pallava Inscription mention Parnjyothi as their general or otherwise. As per vatapi kondan or otherwise. King itself erected the victory pillar in Badami as per inscriptions. Kuram plates which give the details of pallava victory over Badami Chalukya Pulikesin II does not give the general name nor does it indicate anybody else leading the army other than king. Equating Paranjothiyar with siru Thondar and claiming him to be a pallava general is a huge scam to backdate both of them by Dravidian Scholars.

Appar and sambandar are contemproaries, Appar mentions Sambandar. Sambandar visited Siru thondar. So all three are contemporaries.

Paranjothiyar . No Inscription mention Paranjothiyar as Commandar of Pallava Army. Infact the King himself went to conquer Vatapi (Badami) against Chalukyas. There is no evidence linking Paranjyothiar and Siru thondar.

Commandar : Siru Thondar is described as Chola Commander not Pallava in Periyapuranam

Siru Thondar is later than Appar and Sambandar. If Siru Thondar brought Ganesha from Vatapi and introduced Ganesha Worship, then how come Appar and Sambandar Sing about Ganesha in Tamil nadu..

Brazen lies which contradict one another in the same paragraph.
 
Analysis

Literary Vs Archaeological and Epigraphic Evidence.

There is no match between the Literary and epigraphic and Archaeological evidence for a large scale conflict between Saiva and Jains. The inscription and archaeological sites gives a continuous Jain or saiva presence even in places where the literature talks about major conflicts. jain inscriptions continue until 8th 9th century AD and later, provides no evidence of large scale conversions including chola areas.

When we see, the monastries, which were supposed to be in conflict with Shivites. The jain Monastries have inscription dateable to pallavas and Lokaavibhaga to around 5th century. But if we see the Shivite temples, we find only inscriptions to around 10th century or later. This applies to Jain Monastry to where Appar converted to Shaivism also. We do not come across any displacement of Jains due to shivites or conflict from these structures. Many of the Monasties were destroyed after12th century AD, but no destruction is found before these times.


Names of Appar , Sundara and Sambhandar are not mentioned in the inscription. The Word Thirunavukariyar(God who calls gods name) is mentioned, which seem to be similar to Thirupadiyam. This has been equated with Appar and tales are made. Same with Sambandar and sundarar. Names in the inscription are equated with them with no apparent basis.

The Devaram Hymns are not found in inscriptions before Chalukyas took over the chola throne and formed the chalukya chola line. Devaram hymns are absolutely not found in pallava inscriptions, where they supposed to have lived.

The Periyapurana of Sekkilar and the Guruparampara are all later day Puranas, which take one or two episodes from the life of the saints and weave beautiful myths around them. While we are delighted in the divine writings, We must be careful in utilising them for reconstructing history. Episodes corroborated by epigraphical or archaeological source alone should be taken into account and the rest left out to the realm of religious faith.

Conclusion
So Thevaram Trio Appar, Sambandhar and Sundarar are much later date atleast by 1200AD or more and not 7th century AD as claimed by Dravdian Scholars

Sources
  1. Thirukkazhiseerama Vinnagaram
  2. Study uncovers interesting details of cave temple
  3. Mahendra's Inscription At Tiruchirapalli
  4. Pallava Cave Temples of Trichy
  5. Date of Appar
  6. Pandya Arikesari and Pandikkovai
  7. Dates of Nayanmars and Alvars
  8. Some Contributions Of South India To Indian Culture by Rajasevasakta Dewan Bahadur
  9. Inscriptions of Parakesarivarman Uttama-Chola
  10. Epigraphical References
  11. JOURNAL OF THE EPIGRAPHICAL SOCIETY OF INDIA VOL 5 (1978)
  12. Thiru-jnana-sambandar by Swami Sivananda
  13. The Nayanmars
  14. The kings mentioned by Periaazhwar!
  15. PANDYA INSCRIPTIONS
  16. Ramanuja. Continued
  17. Some Contributions of South India to Indian Culture by Sakkottai Krishnaswami Aiyangar
  18. South Indian shrines: illustrated By P. V. Jagadisa Ayyar
  19. Hymns for the Drowning: Poems for Vishnu by Nammalvar and A.K. Ramanujan, (tr.)
  20. Thrikodithanam Mahavishnu Kshetram
  21. Evidence of Alvars
  22. Kalayarkoil temple
  23. Siruthondar by Swami Sivananda
  24. The Holy Lives of the Azhwars or the Dravida Saints by Alkondavalli Govindacharya Ananthacharya Indological Research Institute Publication1982
  25. Philosophy and Theistic Mysticism of the Alwars by S.M.S.Chari Motilal Banarsidass Publishers Limited, Delhi 1997
  26. Srimad Bhagavatha MahaPurana GitaPress. Gorakhpur 1971.
  27. Ancient Heritage of Tamils by V.G.Ramachandran
  28. In Mythology to History through Astronomy edited by N.MahalingamN.I.A Publications, Pollachi, TamilNadu 1980.
  29. Vedic "Aryans" and the Origins of Civilization byNavaratna S.Rajaram and David Frawley
  30. A literary and Scientific perspectiveW.H.Press. Quebec 1995.
  31. South Indian Shrines: Illustrated By P. V. Jagadisa Ayya
  32. The Recovery of the Devaram Hymns BY S. R. BALASUBRAHMANYAN, M.A L.T., Chidambaram
  33. TANJAVUR Brihadhiswara TEMPLE Inscriptions from South Indian Inscriptions
  34. Temple Imagery from Early Mediaeval Peninsular India By Archana Verma
  35. Period of Azhwars

Images
  1. Wikipedia
  2. Rediff
  3. badamionline
  4. The Hindu 
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Is Tirupati Balaji Temple a Buddist Temple

So many scholars, from all sides of the spectrum have many theories on why there may be previous structure at the present Tirupati temple. Let us see ourselves the evidences.
We are not going to any religious discussion or philosophical discussion, we will stick to the main point, was there a Buddhist shrine at the site of Venkateshwara temple at Tirupati.     


Buddhist Temple
Indology scholar Romila Thapar told -Dig underneath every Hindu temple, there will be a buddhist temple. If we take example of Adil shah of Bhamani Dynasty, his court poet farishta tells the king demolished more than 300 major temples in karnataka and built mosques there, even in this case we cannot apply Romila Tapar and say dig underneath every moque that adil shah built, you will find a temple, because many mosque are there which were not built demolishing a temple. The Romilla Tapar comment is pure Indologist leftist leaning. Here she is not providing any proof's, but plain rhetoric.

karthikeya( Murugan) temple.
One more claim put forth by Dravidian scholars of tamil nadu. Originally it was a Karthikeya temple and was converted to a vishnu temple. Bala means young unmarried same as Kumar(sanskrit) and Kumaran(Tamil) , which denotes to karthikeya ,but in tamil version eventhough he is called kumaran, murugan is married to Devyani(deva army) and valli ( tribal girl). So this argument is defeated there , that the murugan can be called balaji. More than that In South he is called Venkateshwara (Lord of Venkata) and only in north India he is called Balaji and in recent times.

First they have to prove that there was a Murugan worship was prevalent in the first millienia in tamil nadu and temples are built for murugan, For this we dont have a answer.

second Pallava were ruling in Kanchi upto 9th century AD and tamil kings areas were below the pallava region.

Third Tirupathi came under Banas and Nolambas for most part in the first milliena. Both being Kannada Dynasties. So we dont see any murugan temple being built. Since the Kannada/ Tulu version of Karthikeya is Shanmuga. If it was a karthikeya temple, then the kannada kings might have called it shanmuga temple.

Fourth and most important Tamil literature right from Sangam works have always claimed that Tirupathi (Thiruvengadam)  lies north of Tamil Nadu boundary.

So Tamil Scholars dont see much credit in Dravidian scholars argument that Tirupati is a Karthikeya or Murugan temple. Indology and Dravidian scholars who have worked tirelessly to undermine authentic Indian history seems have shot themselves in their foot here.

Temple Structure
First temples in south India were built in 4th century AD in Karnataka and Andhra. Even in 6th century AD, most of the temples built were Rock cut temples, not standalone temples that we have today. All the early temples like Mamallapuram of Pallavas are also rock cut temples. So a hill temple Hindu or Buddhist standalone in Thirupathi is unthinkable.

When was Tirupati temple built.


Puranas
The Purana Accounts are legendary and is not helpful in finding the probable date of the temple. Puranas concentrate how Vishnu came voluntarily to take his place there. Varaha temple at the foothills of Tirupati predates venkateshwara temple at the top. The only account relavant here is Tondaman (pallava) started the worship of vishnu here. This Thondaman assisted his brother(Akasa Raja) in administration. Thondaiman had a foster daughter in Tirupati and she was married to venkatesa. After the death of Akasa Raja (left a young prince), he and his nephew fought and tondiaman felt very weak ,so got the weapons from venkateswara . The war ended Indecisively and the country was divided into two. The one closer to Vengadam (Tirupati) was given to thondaman and the other farther away given to his nephew. Tondaiman built the temple and started the festivals. This Tondaman lived in Kaliyuga. There is a separate Thondaiman dynasty post 12th century AD. But Dravidian scholars want to identify Thondaiman as Pallava.


 
Sangam Literature
We dont comes across any mention of temple in the vengadam (Tirupati) hills. Tirupati was on northside of the boundary of Tamil speaking region. Beyond this region vadukar lived with Thirayan as the chief and people spoke a language not understandable to tamils. So no help in determining when the temple was built.

Alwar (Bakti tradition)

One Alwar called poigai Alwar gives around 12 referrences to temple at Tirupati and Vishnu as presiding deity. Poigai Alwar wrote Naalayira Divyap Prabhandham on the vishnava places. In some places he refers to Ilam kumara koman (May Indicate Subramanya, but the reference here is young fellow). Alwar Bhutan refers to Tirupati and Presiding diety in around 8 references in his works. Pey Alwar also refers to Tirupati. These three alwars considered worshipping vishnu with Vedic rituals as the supreme form of worshp. Some refer to the diety as ardhanari, which refers to shiva. We have to come to the conclusion here, eventhough the diety is referred as ardhanari, it may not be peculiar to shiva alone at those times. And the same goes for Ilam kumaran , may not be peculiar to subhramanya. Even though we come across stray references , we are given solid references to prove the diety is vishnu, so we should not vacillate in our judgement that the diety is not vishnu. Ardhanari shows that the temple is equally important for Lakshmi. So all the early Alwars refer to Tirupati and Vishnu diety. Tirumalisai (Bhakti sara - Sanskrit) contemproary of these three alwars wrote that he has seen all faiths and only found vishnu as great. Now we have to date the Alwars ,which is again  controversial. That requires a whole article. But let us try. There is a reference to vairamegha in the early alwars work, that seemed to be identified as Rastrakuta Dantidurga, contemproary of Nandivarma pallava. But the identification needs to be proved. Commentator of Alangara kranta named Yapparungulam belonging to 11th to 12th century AD claims he is desciple of Poigaiyar (poigai alwar)and quotes two stanzas from the authors work. Tirumalisai is dated to 11th century AD. But one thing we can say is all the Alwars were born after the temple were built which was already famous.

Silapatikaram
Silapadigaram a buddhist work tells that Tirupati is Vishnu temple. In this story a Brahman of Mangadu in Malainadu goes to Tirupati and Srirangam and sings in praise of Vishnu.The Tirupati is said to be so famous that people from west coast also went to the temple. So this buddhist epic tells very clearly that presiding diety of Tirupati is Vishnu. Dating of cilapathikaram is controversial, we have already seen in a separate article.

So let us find who this thondaman is?
We find from Sangam literature sources that Vengadam changed hands from kalvar chieftain pulli to Tondaman before the time of pandyan king who won a great victory in Talaiyalanganam. The King who won in Talaiyalanganam is mentioned in Sinnamanur plates dated to 11th century AD and kings mentioned just before this date. The same source says Tondaman ruling from pavattirai (Nellore Dist, AP). We have one more Thondaman Ilam Thirayan ruling in Kanchi. Now the Foster Daugher born to the Tondaman is not legitimate and he is said to have found her on the hills and later finds out that she is his daughter. This has been equated with Naga princess story of karikala. But Karikala meets Naga princess in outskirts of Kaveripattanam, not in Tirupati hills. So we cannot identify Tondaman with karikalan. But there is a pallava story of Pallava marrying naga princess in an inscription in kanchi as well. Perumban Arupadai which gives specific details about Kanchi Vishnu temple of Thondaman Ilam Thiraiyan is silent on Tirupati or association of thiraiyan with Tirupati, so we cannot link these two stories. Thiraiyan had a brother and nephew. He fought with the Nephew and uncle for the throne. Alwars talking about war between southern king (pandya) and Northern ruler (pallava).

The Tirumangai Alwar says that the Thiraiyan kanchi was occupied by one vairamegan. The vairamegan is suposed to be Rastrakutas. Two Rastrakutas occupied the capital one is Dandidurga and other Govinda II. This story of fight between brother and Nephew looks similar to Kampavarman pallava(relative of Western Gangas) and his kid brother Nrptunga Pallava(relative of Pandyas and also Rastrakutas). This story can reveal the struggle between the last war of succession in Pallava Dynasty before Aditya Karikalan unsurped the throne.

Inscriptions
Uttaramallur by Nandivarman pallava II is the first inscription to refer to vengadam, there is no temple here still. The hill is just mentioned as Vengada ,not Thiruvengada(Sri Vengada).
In 8th and 9th centuries AD, Many Visnu temples near Tirupati received Grants from many kings, but none was given to Tirupati temple. But the same can be said about Buddhist or Murugan or Jain Temple , Kings at that time were secular, so there should be a grants even if it is any of the other holy places.
In TTD gives eleven inscription of pallavas. Earliest belong to Dandivikramadeva , which may correspond to period 833-34AD.

Even through many scholars claim many dates for Tirupathi temple construction, First Inscription in Tirupati temple is by Dandivarman pallava(830AD). So the Temple has to be built during that time.

Tirupati Debate
Point is the debate about Tirupati is not just today ,but it is there right from 11th century AD. Ramanuja made arguements to kings to establish the primacy of Vishnu in Tirupati. For this we have to establish the date of Ramanuja.

 Date of Ramanuja
There was a Vaishnavite Devotee called as Nadamuni. He belongs to Mannarkovil in south Arcot district. He spent most of the time in the village and sometimes in Kurukaikkavalappan Kovil, a nearby village, which was just mile after the chola capital Gangaikonda Cholapuram (Named so,After Western Ganga Territories were absorbed into chola empire in 1022AD). when he was in Kurukaikkavalappan Kovil village, he heard vaishnavite devotees singing a song in praise of Vishnu, which was Tiruvoimoli of Nammalvar. He asked the pilgrim to repeat the verses. But the pilgrim knew only ten lines of the 1000 lines poem. So he went in search of the work. He reached Kumbakonam, he got nothing. So he went to Tirunagari in Tirunelveli the native place of Nammalvar. His attempts were futile there also. So he sat under the tree of temple ,where Nammalvar is supposed to have practiced Yoga. He chanced on someone who was direct disciple of Nammalvar and got the full work. He brought the work to srirangam and revived the festival started by Thirmangai Alvar. Having done this, he went on pilgrimage to all the vaishnava shrines in the country. He went to Abhobilam and Tirupati. He went back to Tirupati as he welt the pooja arrangements were not proper. His grandson Alavandar Yamunait- turaivar or Yamunacharya. For the arrangements to become proper, he asked one of his disciples to volunteer to stay in the hill and conduct the worship in proper way. One of his grandsons Thirumalai Nambi volunteered to do the service. Thirumali Nambi settled down there and planted a garden and took upon himself to deliver water for the diety daily from a waterfall little distant from the temple. One of the young sisters that Thirumalai nambi took with him was married to one Kesava Somayaji of Sriperumbudur. The offspring of this marriage was Ramanuja. Ramanuja's date of birth, according to the traditional account of his life,is Kali 4118, A. D. 1017. The other date given of course is Saka 937 bya chronogram. Going by the story we have here ,the date has to be at the fag end of 11th century AD. The same sources give date of Nadamuni to 3684, which would mean A. D. 582-83. So these date cannot be trusted. Ramanuja visted the tirupati temple once in his chilhood. The temple after Thirumalai Nambi was managed well except during one time of Gopinath. The local ruler Yadavaraja found some dispute between Shaivas and Vaishnavas regarding the temple and called in court the warring parties to settle the matter. Ramanuja explained clearly that the temple is vaishnavite and the matter was settled that the temple was Vaishnavite. And the Vaishnavites were given more unoccupied land in the base of the hill for settlement. So through the discussion we have seen that the Ramanuja is in 11th and possibly extended to 12 century. So the earliest dispute seems to be between Shaivites and vaishnavites, which has been decided in favour of Thirupati being Vishnu temple.

Conclusion
The Conclusion is that the Tirupati is a Vishnu temple all along. Since the temple has been built in 9th century AD. It is after 9th century AD that the hill is said to be holy place. So any account which says that the hill is holy(sri or Thiru venkata) is after 9th century AD. This applies any work or devote singing on Tirupati. The dispute seems to be primarily between Shivite and Vaishnavite, because of the Shiva Temple at the base of Tirupati which predate the Tirupati temple. Indologist seems to have introduced some confusion here. There are no inscriptions about Tripati temple, before 9th century AD, because the temple did not exist then, not because it was a Buddhist Shrine.

References
Tirupati Balaji was a Buddhist Shrine
by K. Jamanadas
History of Holy Shrine of Sri venkatesa in Tirupati by Krishnaswamy Aiyangar

Photos
Tirupati Tirumala
Cauvery Crafts
Ramanuja
Divyadesam
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Date of Kambar and Kambaramayanam

Kambar’s period has been an issue of controversy for long among Tamil historians. Simon Casie Chitty, in his 1859 anthology [‘The Tamil Plutarch’] on the lives of poets and poetesses of Southern India and Ceylon, noted : In one of the commendatory stanzas which is prefixed to the workthe year of Saka 808 (AD 886) is specified as the date of its publication by Kamber; but the Rev.Mr. Caldwell, the author of the Comparative Grammar of the Dravidian Languages, rejects this date as spurious from the evidence of certain inscriptions found at Cape Comorin and in the Chalukya country, according to which the Chola kings who patronized Kambar lived only in the eleventh century of the Christian era.”

But, Prof.T.P. Meenakshisundaram says Kambar a contemporary of Ottakkuttar. Other scholars conclude that he belonged to the period of Kulottunga III. Purattirattu, an anthology, quotes verses from Ramayanam after its  quotations from earlier works like Cintamani, while it does not quote from Ottakkuttar or other later poets.

On the basis of one of the verses which give the date of its composition, one may conclude that he lived
in the tenth century.”

Ramachandra Dikshithar of Madras University has concurred that Kambar was a contemporary of King Kulotunga Cholan III,  whose reign spanned between 1178 and 1218 (Vidwan M. Rasamanickam, 1947).

As per Ragava Aiyangar, Kambar may have been born around 1120 and died in 1197.

Analysis and Conclusion
Overall, there are two schools of thought on Kambar’s period. One school proposed that Kambar lived in the 9th century, with which the available circumstantial evidence does not tally properly. Even as recent as 1981, Justice S. Maharajan, who authored a small monograph on Kambar, stated that the 9th century “appears to be the more plausible” period for Kambar. I rather doubt this advanced dating for the simple reason that, in the 9th century, the Chola empire was only in its early stage of ascent, and only the first two kings of the Chola empire have  been identified as living in the 9th century, namely Vijayalaya Chola of Suryavamsa (reigning period 848-881)  and Aditya karikala Chola (871-907). The first most prominent Chola king was Parantaka Chola I (reigning period 907-940), the son of Aditya Chola and the grandson of Vijayalaya Chola.

Acharya Ramanuja
Chalukya chola kings from Kulothunga Chola was a great patrons of Vaishanavism. Vikrama chola built the renewed and built  fortifications for Sri Ranganathar temple. Kulothunga II (1133–50AD) has prosecuted vaishnavites. Kulothunga II is also mentioned in Sekilar periyapuranam. Ramanuja ran away to Hoysala Empire to escape prosecution. Kambar Mentions by name Ramanuja  in Sadagopar Antadi. So he must be of the period or later than Ramanuja. Mostly later than Ramanuja.
Kulothunga III
Kambar mentions  Chalukya Chola  king Kulothunga III(1178–1218AD) in his work ,so Kambar should be of his or later period. Ramanuja was also lived during this period. Kulothunga III 13th century AD was the Contemprory and patron of Famous poets like Ottakuttar , pukalendhi,n Nammazhvar  and Avavaiyar. Cheraman Perumal is also of the same period.Avvaiyar Her two other works, Mooturai and Nalvali, were written for slightly older children.
Raja Raja Chola
Kambar also talks with Raja Raja Chola as contemproary, There are two Raja Raja Cholas. There is Raja Raja chola I(985–1014AD) and Rajaraja chola III(1216–1256AD). So he must of his Rajaraja Chola III period or later. 

Rajendra Chola
Rajendra chola III(1246–1279AD) has honoured Kambar, so he should either be that period or later.

Kakatiya Kingdom
Kambar also went to Kakatiya kingdom then ruled by Purataparudora II(1289 to 1323AD). From 1303AD Khilji forces were battling the Kakatiyas, so it has to be earlier between 1289 to 1303AD.

So by these evidences we can say Kambar lived in later half of 13th century AD and First half of 14th century AD.

Ref:
On Epic Poet Kambar And the Kamba Rasam polemic of polymath Anna
by Sachi Sri Kantha

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