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Guru

The letter 'gu (गु)' in the word 'Guru (गुरु)' refers to darkness (ignorance) while the letter 'ru (रु)' refers to light (spiritual knowledge). Thus undoubtedly, the Guru is Brahman who alleviates this ignorance.

Venkata Kavi is said to have expressed his deep desire to learn music formally from a locally well known musician, Shri Krishna Yogi. But he returned dejected as Krishna Yogi refused to be his Guru. Subsequently, he was advised by his mother to seek the grace of Lord Krshna himself. It is believed that Venkata Kavi beseeched the Lord's grace at the Kalinga Narttana temple in Oottukkadu. According to legend his prayers were answered by the Lord himself. Many compositions lend credence to this fact when we study the lyrics of his compositions extolling his Guru.

 

parama yoga yaagam vedam padittilen padittadu pol nadittilen

paarvai onrile vilainda bhaagyamidu yaarkkumidu aridaanadu

parimala sad (guru padaaravinda komalam)

 

"I have neither formally studied the scriptures and yoga nor have I pretended to possess a mastery over them. I was singularly fortunate to obtain all the knowledge and insights through the benevolent glance of my guru."

 

Sholli mudiyumo (Surati) is another example of this.

 

sholli mudiyumo engal tooya gurunaathan endan sondamenna sondamenru

 

aayiram aayiram vedangal sholvadai arul kadaikann onru shollume

naan sheida aananda tavamellam vellume

poyidai yaaridamum shonnaalum puriyaadu

purindavar yaar enru shollume

anda punniya sangattil ennai tallume

 

As many as 15-20 compositions have been found so far.  Some of these also suggest that he may have had a human pedagogue too. The composer's devotion to the Guru comes across in a telling manner in these compositions.

1
dhyānamē parama pāvanamē
Rasamanjari Ādi
2
ellām gurunāthan
Suraṭi Ādi
3
enna puṇṇiyam
Reetigowḷa Mishra chāpu
4
Guru malaraḍi*
Kharaharapriya
5
guru padāravinda
Ābhōgi Roopakam

Anahita & Apoorva Ravindran

Chitravina N Ravikiran

6
Gurukula maṇiyē*
Shaṇmukhapriya
7
Gurunāthan varuvārō*
Khamāch
8
innum enna
Paras Ādi
9
kādalāhi vashamizhandēn
Reetigowḷa Ādi
10
kaṇkaṇḍa deivamē
Bēgaḍa Ādi

Bhairavi & Malavi

B Krishnamurthy

11
sholla varam taruvāi
Shāmā Ādi
12
sholli muḍiyumāmō
Suraṭi Ādi
13
shollinilē varum
Shankarābharaṇam Ādi
14
tēḍikkaṇḍēnē
Malayamārutam Ādi
15
tiruvaḍi malarō
Kharaharapriya Ādi
16
uyndadu uyndaden
Dēvamanōhari Ādi
17
āyiram āyiram pāyiram
Vasanta Ādi