"Please accept my heartfelt salutations for bringing out such a wonderful book on Sri Ramanuja persecution and exile.
The extent of commitment, discipline, research, the eye for minute details, methodologies followed by an impeccable analysis has been par excellent… simply awesome… to put it mildly!
Solving a humongous jigsaw puzzle forensically, has always been a big challenge. And, after nearly 1000 years… no mean achievement. The book took me back in time to the early 80’s when I first discovered Ms Marple’s meticulousness, and later Perry Mason’s approach of nailing cases incontrovertibly through circumstantial evidences.
Chapters 7 to 9 are simply riveting, it is impossible to stop reading once you get into these sections.
My late dad always believed that the roots to Sri Ramanuja’s persecution lay in his success in establishing the identity of the Lord Venkateshwara around 1066 AD.
From your findings, it looks like Adirajendhra appears to have taken this loss very personally… blinding non combatant ‘opponents’; permitting kulottunga I to take over temple administration 1083, who then supports various pro vaisnava activities in the interim (but not permitting Sri Ramanuja to return till 1111 AD), immediate and personal handover of temple affairs after his death; and Sri Ramanuja’s abhisara (again very uncharacteristic for a person at such an advanced level of siddhi) are too much of coincidences.
On the flip side, I felt giving credence to the work of Dr. Nagaswamy tad disappointing. Despite a peerless scholarship and life long stellar achievements, I found him being intellectually dishonest with his 2008 work. No, I didn’t expect a hagiography from him, but preconceptions and sloppiness are pretty evident. I dropped even that little academic interest when I found him scornful of his peers… but my concern here is that one’s analysis and findings tend to get relative and subjective while refuting another’s views. As long as that defocus didn’t happen, everything is fine…
Locals in Tondanur talk about tonnur lake and the destruction of the Jain basadi in the same tone. The Tondanur basadi (if it did exist) would have been no smaller or grander than the panchakutta basadi in the nearby kambadahalli (established around the same time)… applying anupalabdhi technique could have been more effective in retaining the high quality of analysis and findings ? my soliloquy …. Who knows ? a study for the future ?
All in all… the study and findings make a very compelling case for revising the events of the last years of the Chola empire, apart from uncovering and establishing the authenticity of the events of Sri Ramanuja, and the existential challenges our sampradhayam faced in its nascent years.
Respects and best wishes.
AdiyEn Ramanuja Dasan🙏
Harish Iyengar Sadagopan🙏"