No seer of the Ashta Maths of Udupi has ascended the peetha more than four times
History will be made in Udupi when Vishwesha Tirtha Swami of Pejawar Math ascends the Paryaya Peetha for the fifth time on January 18, 2016. No seer of the Ashta Maths of Udupi has ascended the Paryaya Peetha, also known as Sarvajna Peetha, more than four times since the biennial Paryaya system began in 1522.
The Paryaya denotes the change of authority to manage the Sri Krishna Math/Temple and exclusive rights to worship Lord Krishna in the over 800-year-old Sri Krishna Math/Temple from one math to another among the eight maths.
The 84-year-old Vishwesha Tirtha Swami ascended the peetha in 1952, 1968, 1984 and 2000. He had earlier said that he would not ascend the peetha for the fifth time and instead allow his disciple Vishwaprasanna Tirtha (51), the junior seer of Pejawar Math, to ascend.
Both the senior and junior seers are now observing ‘Chaturmasya vrata’ in Mumbai. Vishwesha Tirtha Swami told The Hindu over the phone that Vishwaprasanna Tirtha had refused to ascend the peetha and had instead pressured him to ascend it for the fifth time.
“I did not want to ascend the Paryaya Peetha for the fifth time. But Vishwaprasanna Tirtha insisted that I do it. Hence I agreed. But it’s all in the hands of god. If I suffer from ill-health, I will allow Vishwaprasanna Tirtha to ascend it,” he said.
On the projects he would like to take up during his fifth Paryaya (2016–17), Vishwesha Tirtha said the Sri Krishna Parisara Trust had about 4 acres of land behind the Rajangana in Udupi. He would give priority to constructing guesthouses and toilets on that land to provide better facilities to the devotees coming to Udupi. Important religious texts would be published in all languages, he said.
On the possibility of strain due to conducting many pujas at the Sri Krishna Math every day, Vishwesha Tirtha Swami said he would conduct the ‘mahapuje’ and “chamara seve” and leave the rest of the rituals to Vishwaprasanna Tirtha.
On whether he would invite Prime Minister Narendra Modi to visit Udupi during his fifth Paryaya? Vishwesha Tirtha Swami said he invited the Prime Minister when he met him a few weeks ago in New Delhi.