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Coronation of 293rd Pontiff

In a landmark event in the history of Indian religious tradition, H. H. Paramahamsa Nithyananda has been declared as the 293rd pontiff of Madurai Aadheenam, the world’s most ancient living Hindu religious organization.

Guru Maha Sannidhanam Srila Sri Arunagirinatha Sri Jnanasambanda Desika Paramacharya Swamigal, the 292nd pontiff of Madurai Aadheenam, declared H. H. Paramahamsa Nithyananda as his successor at an auspicious ceremony held during the press meet on 27th April 2012 in Nithyananda Dhyanapeetam’s international headquarters in Bidadi near Bengaluru.

The Declaration of the current 292 Pontiff, Guru Maha Sannidhanam

At the religious ceremony, which was marked by a mood of celebration, the current pontiff read out the affidavit declaring that “We hereby declare, nominate, enthrone, coronate and appoint Paramahamsa Nithyananda… as 293rd Guru Maha Sannidhanam of Madurai Aadheenam, also called as Thirujnanasambanda Swamigal Adheenam.

We hereby coronate with the title – “His Holiness the 293rd Guru Maha Sannidhanam Srila Sri Paramahamsa Nithyananda Sri Jnanasambanda Desika Paramacharya Swamigal.”

The current 292 pontiff declared H. H. Paramahamsa Nithyananda as “my lawful successor, descendant and inheritor of Madurai Adheenam, Thiru Jnanasambanda Swamigal Adheenam, having all the powers, duties, obligations, ritual and customary rights that is being performed, enjoyed, vested in the Madurai Aadheenam.”

He also declared H. H. Paramahamsa Nithyananda as “my lawful successor to deal with all the movable and immovable properties of the Thiru Jnanasambanda Swamigal Adheenam”, which includes several temples and properties owned by the Aadheenam in India and abroad.

Senior Pontiff, 292 Guru Maha Saanidhanam Speaks on His Choice of Successor

The 292nd pontiff, Srila Sri Arunagirinatha Sri Jnanasambandar joyfully expressed why he chose Paramahamsa Nithyananda as his legal and spiritual successor:

“I was ardently praying to the Almighty since the past 8 years for a powerful, capable and enlightened leader to head the Madurai Aadheenam as its 293rd pontiff… it is the result of our penance, and our punya (spiritual merit) that Paramahamsa Nithyananda has been given to us… We are delighted to say that this is a gift we received in return for the sacred works accomplished by St. Thiru Jnanasambandar,”

Referring to the well-known healing powers of Paramahamsa Nithyananda, the 292nd pontiff recalled that the founder of Madurai Aadheenam, the child incarnation, Thiru Jnanasambandar (one of the four visionary saints of Saiva Siddhanta philosophy), was also a renowned spiritual healer who healed the leprosy of the king Koon Pandian using Thiru Neeru, the sacred ash. Paramahamsa Nithyananda has recently healed the 292nd pontiff of his chronic wheezing trouble.

At this most historical moment etched in the sacred vedic tradition, He also declared, “Paramahamsa Nithyananda is a rare orator who has delivered the timeless spiritual truths in English. Through him, the Saivite devotees worldwide will attain spiritual maturity and the ultimate enlightenment… after knowing him thoroughly, if I don’t appoint him as the Guru Maha Sannidhanam, it will be a gross error in history itself.”

The 292nd Guru Maha Sannidhanam recalled with great delight the historical precedent of Sri Swaminarayana, the head of an independent spiritual organization, who had been coronated by Sri Ramananda as the head of the Uddhava Sampradaya.

According to Shaiva Siddhanta philosophy, everything is preordained according to the judgment of Lord Shiva. Referring to H. H. Paramahamsa Nithyananda as ‘a noble gift of Lord Shiva’ and ‘the avatar of  saint Thiru Jnanasambandar, the current pontiff declared H.H. Nithyananda as the ambassador to the Almighty, appointed by the eternal Government of Lord Shiva.

There is no tenure for this position and it is a lifetime honor.

H.H Paramahamsa Nithyananda, 293 Pontiff’s Promise to Madurai Aadheenam

Accepting this divine responsibility as the 293rd pontiff of Madurai Aadheenam, H.H Paramahamsa Nithyananda pledged to bring great international fame to Madurai Aadheenam and the four temples belonging to it.

Seeking the blessings of Goddess Meenakshi and Lord Sundareshwara, the presiding incarnations of Madurai and Aadheenam, Paramahamsa Nithyananda vowed to expand the spiritual and social services of the Aadheenam which are already well renowned in Southern India into internationally acclaimed services.

He declared:

  • “The kumbabhishekam (consecration ceremony) of the four temples in Thanjavur Dt. belonging to the Madurai Aadheenam would be performed by the end of this year.
  • Annadaan (free food) distribution to all visitors at the Meenakshi Temple and Madurai Aadheenam will commence immediately.
  • There will be upcoming projects of educational services such as schools and colleges in 100 places in rural areas.”
On accepting this sacred honor, H. H. Paramahamsa Nithyananda stated, “With all humbleness for divine grace I hereby declare that I accept the responsibility given to me… as the 293rd Guru Maha Sannidhanam of Madurai Aadheenam… I vow…we will fulfill all the responsibilities of Madurai Aadheenam, making the Saiva tradition revived and celebrated all over the world… I also commit to Madurai Aadheenam Guru Maha Sannidhanam… that we will make Madurai Aadheenam as an international religious organization.”

Coronation Ceremory at Madurai Aadheenam

Madurai, 29 April 2012: H. H. Paramahamsa Nithyananda and Guru Maha Sannidhanam Srila Sri Arunagirinatha Sri Jnanasambanda Desika Paramacharya Swamigal, the 292nd pontiff of Madurai Aadheenam, addressed a joint press meet at Madurai Aadheenam in Madurai today. The occasion was the coronation of H.H. Paramahamsa Nithyananda as the 293rd pontiff of Madurai Aadheenam. Following the coronation ceremony earlier held on 27th April at Nithyananda Dhyanapeetam, this ceremony at the sacred energy field of ageless Aadheenam marks the grand coronation celebrations at the seat of Thiru Jnana Sambandar’s Aadheenam.

Accepting the responsibility as the 293rd pontiff of Madurai Aadheenam, Paramahamsa Nithyananda  observed that the experience, clarity and administrative capacity of the 292nd pontiff would be a great guidance to Nithyananda Dhyanapeetam and himself. “Motivated by his inspiration, I decided that when we set out to do any good or spiritual deeds, it is common to have disturbances, but one should not hesitate on account of that,” he said.

In line with Hindu tradition, H. H. Paramahamsa Nithyananda made an offering of Rs. 5 crore towards Madurai Aadheenam’s spiritual activities. On the occasion of Chitra Pournami on 5th May 2012 this year, Paramahamsa Nithyananda will offer a golden throne, sandals and ruling staff to the 292nd pontiff at a ceremony in Tiruvannamalai. On 5th June, as part of the Thiru Jnanadambandar Guru Pooja festival in Madurai, a ‘kanakabhishekam’ (shower of gold coins) will also be offered to him.

Responding to questions from the media, the 292nd pontiff remarked that the rumors circulating about Paramahamsa Nithyananda were a result of jealousy, ignorance and lack of understanding about him. “Nithyananda is a sage and a saint!”, he declared.

About Madurai Aadheenam

The legendary and sacred Madurai Aadheenam has existed since time immemorial. However, it was revived 1500 years ago by the young enlightened incarnation Thiru Jnanasambandar, one of the four visionary saints of South Indian Saiva Siddhanta. The Aadheenam is established in Madurai, one of the oldest cities of India with a recorded history dating all the way back to Tamil Sangam period in 3rd century, the the original history dating back to the pre-historic period, founded by the cosmic father, and mother – Lord Shiva and Devi.

The pontiff of the Madurai Aadheenam is known by the title ‘Guru Maha Sannidhanam’ and inherits great responsibility in carrying forward the traditions of Thiru Jnanasambandar’s sacred work. The pontiffs are revered and considered as the direct embodiment of Lord Shiva and Devi, in the spiritual lineage of Madurai Aadheenam’s legacy. The spiritual services offered by Madurai Aadheenam are well-known throughout India.

Read more about the sacred legacy and founders of Madurai Aadheenam here..