Umapati Sivacharyar

Respect

When we treat people merely as they are, they will remain as they are. When we treat them as if they were what they should be, they will become what they should be.

Umapati was a precocious child who soon mastered all the Tamil and Sanskrit texts, including the Vedas and Agamas. Following the family tradition, he eventually became one of the Sivacharyas (the priestly class) who performed all the acts of worship in the Chidambaram shrine. In recognition of his outstanding accomplishments the Chola king of the day bestowed on him special honours such as a pearl palanquin in which he was carried around. The honours also included a drum accompaniment as he went about his business, and a torch that was lit even during daylight hours. He was clearly a major figure in his city.                                       Umapati Sivam was born into a brahmin family that belonged to the Tillai Muvayiravar, the group of three thousand brahmins who traditionally have the exclusive privilege of undertaking the priestly duties in the Chidambaram Nataraja Temple. They all come from the dikshitar community.                  Kodikkavi

It is a short poem sung while hoisting a flag at the Kodimaram or flag pole of Chidambaram temple during Thiruvathirai festival. It was a miracle performed by the author under the grace of Lord Nataraja.

In this work, Umapathi Sivam prayed for removal of Anava mala from his soul. There are four chapter in this work consisting sixteen lines. The chapters are; Purpose of the Soul (Uyirin kurikkol); Interaction of Grace with Soul (Uyirukku Arulum Muraimai); Requesting Grace (Thiruvarul Venduthal); The Five letter mantra’s explanation (Thiruvainthelutthu Vilakkam).

This scholarly philosopher has written many sidhdhanthic scriptures. he has written eight of the fourteen reverand sidhdhanthic texts.                He has also written commentary in samskritam for the paushkarAgamam. Hailing the enchanting dance for the Supreme Lord at thiruththillai he has composed two works in sanskrit namely Nataraja dvani mantra sthava and kuJnchitAghri sthavam. From the verses of the chankarpa nirakaranam, he has written it is found that his period was 14th century.

At the end of the ceremony Umapati Sivam called all the senkundars (the weavers) and told them, ‘You are the ones who gave food to my Guru and assuaged both his thirst and his hunger. By this act you also enabled me to consume the Guru’s ucchistam. Therefore, out of gratitude, I am going to honour your community by issuing a proclamation that from now on your community will have the exclusive privilege of offering the cloth that is used in the flag-hoisting ceremony.’