Everything does pass, and we can endure and we can survive!! – Rahul Dravid
Legend has it that Siva and Parvathi had the fruit of wisdom in the form of a mango with them – the gnana pazham. Since they couldn’t divide the fruit amongst their two sons, they held a competition. The one who came round the earth first would get it. Naturally, Murugan left for the voyage on his mayil vaaganam and Pillayaar, intelligent that he was, considered his mother and father as the world and came round them thrice to get the fruit of wisdom. Angered at this when he returned, Murugan left his father’s abode – Mount Kailash, gave up his family and landed on the hills of Pazhani. He is said to be wearing only a loin cloth and taken the garb of a sanyasin, holding a staff in hand instead of the Vel that he usually has. Hence he is also known as Dhandayudhapaani.
Pazhani is the first of the Aru Padai Veedu (6 houses) of Murugan. Pazhani malai was home to many sidhars for a long time. A Sidhar is one who is accomplished in the Sidhaas (sciences) – masters of science. Each padai veedu of Murugan has a prominent Sidhar, the prime spot taken by Bogar – the sidhar at Pazhani.
The earliest available Siddha works are dated 300 – 500 BC. According to H.P.Blavatsky’s The Secret Doctrine, Siddhas belong to the fourth root race. Siddhas and their powers are mentioned in Shwetashvatara Upanishad (Ch. 1, Verses 3, 5, 7). Vayu Purana (Ch 41 Verses 66- 73) mentions Siddhas and their prowess. The 300 – 500 BC dates synchronize with Pathanjali – whose works on Yoga are one of India’s top selling brands. Agasthya, the great Rishi of yore, is depicted as having a Chinese face in South East Asian temples. Lot of research and books by eminent scholars are available to confirm these things. A good place to start would be http://www.hinduwebsite.com/hinduism/essays/siddhas.asp#fn03.
I came across some astounding facts on Bogar, his works and the philosophy behind Murugan having a dhandam in his hand instead of the Vel and thought it wise to share them.
Bogar is said to have fashioned the original deity of Murugan at Pazhani. He made it out of 4448 rare herbs. He mixed these herbs together to make 9 great poisons (nava bhaashanam). He obtained mercury from China for this purpose. When gelled together, these 9 poisons make a Master Medicine that cures many ailments!! This medicinal herb concoction was made in the form of Murugan. Remember that herbs are plants; yet Bogar has recommended that to maintain the medicinal value of the vigraham intact, keep on doing abhishekam to it!! – within the prescribed format of ablutions done for all Gods. The medicinal value of the pazhani panchamritham (mixture of fruits poured on the diety) is well known. Written evidence of such a Master medicine can be found Thirumoolar’s book Thirumandhiram.
The DMK wasted no time in engaging the priests at Pazhani to scrape off the deity’s backside and sell the rarest of rare medicinal herb. The vigraha was then rescued by Kanchi Periyavaa who fashioned a new nava bhaashanam vigraha and pushed the original Bogar’s vigraha to safety!!
Bogar wanted to spread the knowledge of the sciences that he possessed and leaving his seedan (disciple) Pulipaani at Pazhani went to China. There are written records stating that he flew to China. While the fact that he flew to China is disputed, his prsence in China is not. It is said that he was known in China as Bo Yang Lao Tzu. In China, he established Taoism (Than “Om”) and gave them the concept of Yin-Yang (chinese concept of positive/ negative). Later on, he fell victim to the opium practices in China. He lost all his knowledge and was under the effects of opium.
He managed to come back to Pazhani where his disciple took upon the task of rehabilitating his master. Since disciples arent allowed to teach masters, a staff was placed in front of Pulipaani and all knowledge was imparted to it. Bogar was sitting near the staff and grasped all Pulipaani’s knowledge regaining his original mastery of the sciences. The staff had become as powerful as Bogar and had absorbed all knowledge as well. Hence, the ordinary staff from the Murugan vigraham was removed and replaced with the all-powerful one!! Hence, the dhandam at Pazhani is to be worshipped as much as Murugan Himself!!
Bogar 7000 and Bogar 700 are his famous works. From the Bogar Sannidhi at Pazhani temple, there is a suranga paadhai (secret underground route) to the moolavar (main deity). Bogar was last seen going in here and never returned. It is said that he attained Nirvikalpa Samaadhi there.
Astounding facts these – when I came across them!! Bogar is considered as one of the 18 great sidhars. Each of them has contributed to many sciences and have left behind treasure troves in the form of books. We have unfortunately embraced a more easily understandable western science and ignored our own. Let alone ignore, we have criticised and laughed at these great works.
Snubbing a glorious past and indulging in the pleasures of the present are not going to help have a bright future. It would be best to delve into these great works, learn and benefit from them. For the time being, it would do to simply believe in them, atleast not ridicule them!!