Prayers – What do you all think?

I am starting this in purely a way to get all your thoughts – not to say something is right or wrong – most importantly not to offend anyone.

Periyava in Deivathin Kural Volume 1 says that praying to God itself is little childish – it means that we think that swami doesn’t know your problem – how can it be true? If He is Iswaran – He knows it all – so why pray to him? Accept whatever He gives you. While it is true but we are not gnanis and matured like that – so, we do pray.

We all pray for something – for health, promotion, marriage or moksha – we have our own reasons for our prayers. I have been watching a FB group where people post for lots of problems and asking all others to pray too. Most of them are health-related – father getting into major surgery, COVID related, very close to death situation – very very serious ones and quite sad. Normally there are 500+ comments for those posts. Although I don’t write anything on the comment, I stop for a minute and pray Mahaperiyava to bless them. I also saw recently someone asked everyone to pray to Mahaperiyava to find his cellphone – people did. It is ok that we can pray to Him for anything.

My question / doubt is can anyone other the impacted person be the most apt person to pray for something? For instance if someone in the family is hospitalized, you go in front of Mahaperiyava, you pray to Him and to me, that is the most powerful prayer as it comes out of your heart. Asking others to pray for my problem, to me, that shows that I have no faith in my prayer. Maybe I am wrong!

Again, I am not saying something is right or wrong – I am trying to understand what everyone thinks – that’s all!

Periyava Sharanam!



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33 replies

  1. Sir all the people with Dravidian ideology will be having a field day looking at your post. At a time when we thought that there are external forces trying to belittle our Dharma. Your post highlights that we should look urgently within and cleanse before tackling external forces.

    People chant Devara pathigams hoping for a relief to their problems. Those problems might seem trivial to you but it is not trivial for them. By selectively quoting Mahaperiyava and Deivathin Kural you have done a great disservice. Every prayer is important. This movement should not be just restricted to protect Vedas and this needs to reach every section of society. Please indulge in positive debates is my sincere request to you. I pray to Mahaperiyava to guide you in the right path.

    • Thanks for your prayers for me. From the first line to the last line, nowhere I criticize anyone. I carefully walked/wrote each line. Every prayer is important for all. Even a cellphone prayer is important for that devotee – there is nothing to mock. That’s exactly what I mentioned. In this whole post, you missed the main point which is “should you really ask someone else to pray for you?”. Even in your message, you say that you will pray Mahaperiyava for me – thanks but I will do the same prayer myself, which I believe is more powerful that anything else. That is the point of this whole post.

      • I believe in Kootu Prarthanai. I pray for the welfare of everyone reading this message. Kootu Prarthanai is a great carrier in taking the message of Periyava. I will end this here.

      • All I asked for various opinions. Never said that I am right. Thanks

      • Point taken. I just read your other post, I never questioned the authenticity of your Deivathin Kural quotes just offered different perspective around prayers and specifically kootu Prarthanai.

        I have read some of your wonderful blogs in the past. May your service continue. I did not mean to offend you in anyways.

  2. Everyday at the conclusion of puja all of us pray “lokaas samasthaas sukhino bhavanthu; sarvathra san mangalaani santhu’. This embodies essence of all our prayers is universal welfare; yes, we and everyone of us are all part and parcel of this. As such there is absolutely no harm in praying for the well being of others, more so when there is a specific request. I would go a further step such of those who respond to such request should communicate with the person who made the request; this will itself help him/her to feel encouraged that he/she is not alone; others do have concern.

  3. I always believed that others prayers make no difference on me. One faces troubles/ happiness based on his/her own kukarma / sukarma. If others prayers can change my fate then what’s the whole karma theory about? If i’ve done kukarma in my previous lives I should not expect others to pray for me so that I escape the results of that kukarma. I’ve read somewhere that results of karma are like an arrow that has been released by the archer. It’s not going to change direction/ stop what it’s supposed to do because of others prayers. The only prayer that I believe will work is to ask Bhagawan to give me strength to withstand the results of my own karma. As Shankara Bhagawatpada said in “Evam gyantva mahadevi yatha yogyam tatha kuru”.

    • “If others prayers can change my fate then what’s the whole karma theory about?”

      Raju Garu

      Your question on Karma theory is correct. Pl. note that if your good Karma is stronger, only then somebody will pray for you to vanish a few bad Karma. However the bad Karma that are very stronger, you will have to face anyway but with mild impact. Even further, if Guru wants, he will remove all your Karmas (good as well as bad) at one stroke and give you Moksha.

      Some times Karma theory what generally we understand works differently at different places at different circumstances for different reasons, one must study deeply to understand these differences. Hope you get my point.

  4. Nilakanta Dikshita in his Ananda sagara sthava beautifully tells why one should pray to Bhagavan (Mahaperiyava has talked about the Dikshita and this work in Deivathin Kural under the topic Meenakshi).

    ஆவேத்³யதாமவிதி³தம்ʼ கிமதா²ப்யநுக்தம்ʼ
    வக்தவ்யமாந்தரருஜோபஶமாய நாலம் .
    இத்யர்த்²யஸே கிமபி தச்ச்²ரவணே நிதா⁴தும்ʼ
    மாத꞉ ப்ரஸீத³ மலயத்⁴வஜபாண்ட்³யகந்யே ..2..

    He says, (Very loose translation) “How can I tell (Ask) anything which is already not known to you? But if I dont express myself to you, I wont get mental peace. So, Amba, please hear me out.” The other person who wants others to pray on their behalf will get a mental peace. We also, get some amount of satisfaction by offering praying for others.

  5. There are also instances where Periyavaa himself has suggested this to his devotees- “go and ask her. She will not say no .She is the embodiment of mercy” .. (Kanakadhara Lakshminarayanan..) It many not be all that bad to ask her because she is the only ONE who can give.. Not sure if you will remember this.. Many years ago, Kumudam used to run a weekly column highlighting some personal issues and requesting everyone to pray at a specific time for a few minutes for their welfare. I remember that my mother used to do it.. Perhaps it is a good thing that one is taking time and effort for the welfare of others… It is said that that Kootu prarthanai is very effective.. MGR ‘s recovery is always cited as an example for the power of it! I remember that Periyava has also said that when we ask Her, it is like a child asking its parents and in this case nothing is wrong!

  6. Dear Mahesh,
    If one has to sum up, what is trivial for one is huge for another. I believe ‘kootu Praarthanai’ Periva himself has advocated as more effective for many prayers. No doubt with his grace all prayers for most devotees he does fulfill. All this hints at the need to place our issues before him and pray, rest is always his Karina.

  7. Hello mahesh

    One more aspect you have to add to this madness is this guru pooja miracles which has made sure our ppl are reduced to just asking asking and asking. I also have serious issues with the Fb group you are referring to name is known to us since we are associated with it since a decade now.

    Let me know what support u need am willing to work tirelessly to make sure our ppl pray for the vedic society welfare and not worry about their cell phone Getting lost

    Periayava sharanam

    • With due respects to you Sir, please do not make such a derogatory statement about Guru Pooja miracles, how can you call it madness. Yes I agree people ask for worldly things but for many it may be a stepping stone to reach greater heights in Bhakti Marga. It surprises me that a MahaPeriyava devotee should make such a comment.

      • I second Rukmani Sampathkumar Garu’s opinion.

        Although there are a few fake stories coming out in the name of Maha Periva, I still strongly believe that Maha Periva does miracles. It all needs a strong belief on Him, people with dilemma, cannot realize Maha Periva, this is for sure.

        Pl. for Periva sake, don’t use such hurting words in this pious forum. Hope you understand Sri Bharath Subramanian

    • Mister why do you post YouTube videos where devotees share the miracles on their personal life by the grace of Mahaperiyava. If your intention is just to promote Vegas why post videos of Mahaperiyava experiences. I find your comment extremely insensitive and belittling the Dharmic cause.

    • To understand about Guru one must first be a disciple accepted by a guru.I can’t call any one my guru and more important talk less of any guru
      We are in a Mahaperiyava blog which means at least here we should not talk things like pujas miracles of Guru as madness.
      God is in every human being that’s why when we meet we say Namaste 🙏 and raise both our hands and it’s important we do not disrespect individuals if we disagree from his point of view
      In management first lesson attack the issue never attack the person.
      Mahesh Did not write anything wrong many here missed his main point
      His question was who should pray for a persons problem ? is it the person himself or can others pray for him.It’s a beautiful open ended question
      He expressed his views humbly also said he may be wrong though in my view his point was very right
      Loka Samastha praying for universe or group prayers called Sathsang are all right .
      Sanatana dharma is complex and we may end up with all the answers given are right
      Who is a Guru in a simpler term?
      Guru puja miracles are true miracles happen
      It happened to me because I believed in them
      Touch our mother feet watch miracles happen
      It’s also a guru puja
      Adi Shankara faced similar problems we are facing here like arguments .He decided to travel across india then Hindusthan and debate various
      Scholars and win.Debates used to have rules and judges are people who decide who won

      Please remember if we sleep tonight
      There is no guarantee we get up tomorrow morning .If we get up it’s a miracle and gift from our God Guru and karma
      🙏🕉🙏

  8. Mahesh Garu

    I have gone through your feelings in the writeup and also the comments down there. I have only one thing to say that, it is immaterial whether you pray alone or with a group, but what matters is for whom you are praying. A prayer made for others has more vital than that is made for self.

    Believe me, I seldom pray God for self-want but not much were answered. However when I prayed for others, most of them were answered. Now a days, I only pray for others, believing others may pray for me when I am in trouble. Further to that, I made-up myself that all good and bad things happening to me are ‘Bhavat Prasadam’. Whom I to accept or reject HIS Prasadams?

  9. Dear Shri Mahesh,

    Deivathin Kural is a collection of HH Periyavaa discourses at different times in different contexts. Adiyaen has also read about Periyavaa recommending collective prayers / chants of kOLaRU pathigam at an instance where 8 planets met in straight line in the 60s and calling for group parayanams of Hanuman Chalisa during war times.

    So in one context, when addressing specific groups he may chide them saying Prayer is childish and in another context when with a group that is perhaps looking for solace HE would have advised group prayers. Both are true as they came verily from HIM – Periyavaa.

    Personally, if I may offer an analogy – though mom or dad know what to give to a child at any given point in time – that does not stop the child from asking what it wants – be it toys or some delicacy – sometimes it gets it and sometimes it does not – feeling a tad disappointed for some time and then hopping on to the next item.

    Sometimes we have seen that when parents are too strict in denying a wish to a child – pat comes an uncle – especially that loving maternal uncle and bestows the kids wishes as a bonanza which the parents do not refuse. Prayers by others are of this kind. I will also write a personal incident to your email id which you will find interesting,

  10. I don’t know in what context Periyava has said this. Must read it up.

    I too have been thinking about this even as I pray. Here are my thoughts on Prayer.
    Prayer seems to have many uses:

    – For some (most perhaps) it is an earnest appeal to a higher power for help. We tacitly acknowledge that whatever our effort, we may be powerless against unknown variables and actively seek the all knowing (omniscient) Being for help.

    – Prayer also helps to ‘unload’ pressure building up in our selves due to anxiety, expectation etc. onto an all powerful (omnipotent) Being, and exhort Him/Her to bear the pressure along with us.

    – Prayer also acts as a kind of self suggestion exercise- that when one keeps repeating to oneself, in front of a Super Counselor, an all understanding and all benevolent Being, one develops a good, positive attitude and strength to carry on with continued/renewed effort and hope.

    – As one progresses in regular prayer, slowly, it is a good state for introspection, The mind doesn’t stop thinking even as the lips pray. Initially it may be about the banalities or mundane things in life. Slowly, the mind turns inward and the introspection turns to philosophical questions and seeks answers within. The prayer roots and fixes one in a such a place that one can explore the higher dimensions of the mind with freedom.

    – Progressing even further, prayer doubles up as a meditation process and leads one into the meditative state and then onto the spiritual dimension.

    – Prayer can, also finally, help one immerse him/herself in Eshwara and become one with HIM. Where perhaps even prayer will cease to matter.

    (The last two, I’m speculating as natural progression. I don’t know)

    Jaya Jaya Sankara Hara Hara Sankara!

  11. A thought provoking Mahesh indeed! I read in in one the videos of Dr.Veezhinathan that SRI MAHA PERIYAVA told that everybody prays to HIM for something or other; but nobody asks for the welfare of his Neighbours. Again to quote BHAGAVAN SRI RAMANA to one of HIS American devotee that “God doesn’t require anyone’s recommendation to bless /cure such and such person.But of course that it is from the standpoint of complete total surrender to GOD/GURU.HE also told nothing wrong to pray or ask God as most of us are “ partially surrendered “type devotees and total Surrender one would get only by the GRACE OF GURU/GOD. Above just for information and not to wound anyone. Let us pray to MAHA PERIYAVA FOR undivided Bhakti/ Devotion to HIS LOTUS FEET…” Avan Arulale Avan thal Varangi” to quote Saint MANICKAVACHAGAR.

  12. If the whole Cosmos is connected, then what I feel deeply in my heart will have sympathetic reactions in every particle of the Cosmos, however faint that reaction may be. So when I feel deeply for a suffering person and invoke as “prayer” all my hope and good-will for that person’s solace, that too will have its effect.

    Also, our the purpose of “prayers” is not to remind Eswaran about our existence, but to remind ourselves of Eswaran’s presence.

    This is my humble thought on this. May Periyaval forgive my ignorance if I am wrong.

  13. Hi Mahesh,
    Vanakkam. Here is my two cents of thought on your question as far as my intellect can conceive. Praying on our own is good with deep Bhakthi towards your Guru, Maha Periyava or Istha Devatha however…when the same prayer is offered to the Divine by sincere prayers by a group of people…I think the results could and would work faster provided that it is in that person’s karma to have a quicker answer. There is never, in my humble opinion, an answer of “No” from God…whatever your wishes maybe whether it is good or bad. Sometimes you get an immediate – YES! Most of the time, the answer is WAIT!. But we as human with all our flaws, don’t have the patience to wait as we want everything NOW. In the meantime, because of our impatience, we ask anyone..whether you know them or not…whether they pray for you or not…hoping to get our prayer gets answered quickly as possible. Whether the person who prays gets his answer quickly or not…whether one person prays or a bunch of people prays…in the end…it’s the Will of God and that person’s karma and Bhakthi whether his prayer will be answered or not. But it’s no harm in praying as a group for a good cause. Just my two cents.

  14. I remember reading somewhere about Paramachaya’s observation after MGR’s recovery and return from USA. “இத்தனை லட்சம் பேரோட பிரார்த்தனை வீணா போயிடுமா என்ன?”. Someone can find out authenticity of this statement. Many may remember in AIR there used to be regular announcements of archana and abhisheka being carried out in many temples of Tamilnadu in MGR’s name.

    However any prayer that arises having purity of purpose will certainly have beneficial effects. Though karmic effect may decide the fate of the victim, the benefit of spending time in a selfless act purifies the mind of the one who prays. This is important. The idea is “live for others”

  15. Hello Sir,

    When life is not harsh one tends to aTtribute ones success to ones efforts including efficacy of ones faith and efficacy of ones prayer and even efficacy of ones Bhakti towards Periyava. I have been though this and still do

    But when one is going through tough times where you are literally afraid of next second and afraid of even slightest sound others prayers maybe gives you the boost. I have been through this too . Analogy is would you giving 1 rupees to some one who hasn’t had anything to eat in 24 hours because of lack of money.

    It’s faith alone. If other person feels your prayer is going to help them that’s all it matters

    I am sure things are more complicated than my last sentence

  16. Periyavaa also goes on in DK to say that we pray despite Eeswara knowing our issues to get ourselves some peace of mind. When sorrows are shared we feel lighter. Our sanathana dharma prays like Loka Samastha Sukino Bhavantu and so my personal feel is while we pray for others whether the actual person benefits or not we will definitely benefit and attain chitta sudhi or cleansing of our own mind. This I believe Periyavaa has also indicated in DK as well. We should also pray for our own personal upliftment without any reservations..

  17. Mahesh
    You have asked a beautiful yet complex question
    Here are my thoughts
    When Sri Maha Periyava says praying is childish
    We must understand that what he says will have different meaning to different people of different ages
    In different situations
    Next Tamil is the oldest known language many words
    Cannot be translated into English just like Sanskrit
    There is a difference between prayers and praying for our wishes.Prayers are using mantras to address a particular God with sole purpose of connecting with the God with No wishes expressed
    Sri Periyava when he says it’s childish to pray means
    Pray to God and god will understand your wishes
    Needs without expressing or let’s grow up to just pray
    Without expecting anything from God because our focus is God not our wishes
    Now praying for our wishes is praying to God to fulfill
    Our wish.We are humans nothing wrong in praying for our wishes to come true as we are in Kaliyuga
    And era of worst problems for humans

    Next should effected person pray or can others pray
    A mother always prays for her children to pass exams
    Return home safe or recover from illness even though
    Her children are one month baby or 40 yrs daughter

    Effected person must have faith in god to pray
    To get his wishes fullfilled.Yes if he prays better
    But Sanatana dharma has options .His wife can pray
    To fulfill his wishes.
    People praying for lost cell phone to be found may look silly but today’s cell phone costs Lakhs it’s a hand held computer,which has our banking details
    To our life in it .Nothing wrong in praying to be found

    Sri Periyava is a god in human form and human in God form meaning if you are devoted to him you can and you will feel his presence arround you in times of crisis and he will show a sign signal for you to feel him and give you sudden idea to solve your problem
    To get this state one must be a good person
    Good citizen pay his taxes never lie always pray
    With no expectations ( Gita ) be humble feed the
    Poor ,save the cow , respect the priest Brahmin
    And live with no fear of death welcoming death any moment since he she is detached to life and wealth

    Hope this helped
    Om Shanthi
    Loka samastha sukhino Bhavathu
    🙏🕉🙏

  18. When we treat the entire world as our kudumbam, all the persons are bound to be your family and hence your praying for others means you are praying for your family members. Even in Homes navagraha homam is done for all members for the family. Hence in my view, praying for others is also good. In olden days King used to pray god for the welfare of his citizens.

  19. Periyava sharanam,
    I think collective prayers is more like sending a positive thought/ well wishes to the person or situation in need . It’s like sending a message to universe and hoping it would echo back.

    As per the Law of Attraction- Thoughts are magnetic and thoughts have attraction. As you think thoughts,they are sent out into the universe,and they magnetically attract all things of same frequency.
    Everything sent out returns to the source-you.

    That’s why in growing up days, I remember our parents/ grandparents saying don’t say/wish anything bad as they are Gods who say”Tadasthu “( as you wish)

  20. Pujya ShrI MahAperiyavA also says that instead of randomly going and crying about your problem to everyone, you can go and tell your problems to BhagavAn. He asks whether that is not better.

    Even in Bhagavad Gita, ShrI Krishna says that there are 4 types of people who pray to Him. The distressed (Arthi), those who seek wealth (arthArti), those who are true seekers (mumukshu), and those who are wise or we can say even liberated (gYAni).

    When Pujya ShrI MahAperiyavA says that praying is childish, it is for us to think what we are exactly doing. We are bringing down the level of bhagavAn thinking that He does not know our problems and we need to tell Him. If we understand and practice the inner purport, we become gYAnis.

    I think that when people are distressed, they are not able to handle their problems. All of us have become weaker In handling these issues, which shows that our attachment level is very high. That is why from health, people have come to missing cell phones. In a way they fall into one of those 4 categories in BG, and that is ok to ask for things to periyavA.

    I think we should pray that people should become stronger spiritually and they connect with Him truly that He would guide them to follow the path of dharmA and live a peaceful and happy life. 🙏

  21. While the impacted person should be the right person to pray, it is something like lifting a big rock, he wants it to be away. Hence the others need!

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