Natha Muni’s grandson, Yamunai Thuraivar was born on the full moon day when Uttarashada asterism was prevailing in Adi month of Dhatu year, which is the 4017th year of Kali-Yuga (916 A.D), at Kuppanguli near Kattumannar Koil. Yamunai Thuraivar was a child prodigy and used to memorize the Vedic passages by just hearing them once. Being a blessed child, Yamunai Thuraivar mastered the Vedas at a very early age and started pursuing his philosophical education under the tutelage of Bashyacharya at the age of twelve years. Being impressed with Yamunai Thuraivar’s brilliance, Bashyacharya treated him with respect and made him the leader of the students at the school.
Once, when Bashyacharya had gone out, a scholarly looking person entered the school and arrogantly asked, “Where is your preceptor, has he lost his senses? He has not paid his tax from the past two years. Is he willing to challenge my Guru?” Yamunai Thuraivar was shaken by the attitude of the intruder and asked, “Swami could you please tell me why my master has to pay taxes and who you are?”
The intruder replied, “I am the fortunate disciple of the great Vidvatjana Kolahala (one who wreaks havoc in the minds of the scholars with his knowledge and intellect), who is the crest jewel of the entire country. He adorns the Pandya king’s court as its crown and even the king acts as his humble servant. According to the established rule, every scholar in the kingdom has to pay a yearly tax to my master or challenge him in a debate to establish one’s superiority over him. Your preceptor has not paid taxes from the past two years. Has he become foolish enough to challenge my master’s learning?”
Yamunai Thuraivar could not digest the humiliation that his preceptor was being subjected to and decided to teach a lesson to the intruder and his master Vidvatjana Kolahala. Yamunai Thuraivar said, “Go and tell your master that Bashyacharya’s disciple Yamunai Thuraivar is willing to challenge him in a debate. Let him face me before even thinking of humiliating my noble preceptor again.”
Being infuriated at Yamunai Thuraivar’s reply, the intruder left the school to inform his master and the king about Yamunai Thuraivar’s challenge. Bashyacharya got to know about Yamunai Thuraivar’s challenge as soon as he returned to the school and became nervous. Bashyacharya, who had already lost to Vidvatjana Kolahala in a debate, unsuccessfully tried to persuade Yamunai Thuraivar to withdraw his challenge and apologize for the mistake that he had committed. However, Yamunai Thuraivar was unyielding and was determined to face Vidvatjana Kolahala.
Vidvatjana Kolahala and the king started laughing as soon as they came to know about the age of the boy who had dared face Vidvatjana Kolahala in a debate. Everyone present in the court started to think that a young boy has challenged Vidvatjana Kolahala, an eminent scholar whose fame had spread far and wide, out of his ignorance. With a desire to have some fun, the king sent a messenger to summon Yamunai Thuraivar to the court to face Vidvatjana Kolahala in a debate. The messenger approached Yamunai Thuraivar and said, “The king has asked you to come to the court to challenge Vidvatjana Kolahala in a debate as proposed by you.”
Yamunai Thuraivar, who was waiting for a reply from Vidvatjana Kolahala, said, “I have challenged Vidvatjana Kolahala, who is regarded as the ornament of the king’s court, therefore, it is appropriate for the king to take me to his court with all the honor that a scholar deserves. If not, please request the king to send Vidvatjana Kolahala here and let the debate happen here.”
The messenger conveyed Yamunai Thuraivar’s message to the king and the king was even more amused. He sent a palanquin and a few attendants to bring Yamunai Thuraivar to the court.
We will reveal about the debate between Yamunai Thuraivar and Vidvatjana Kolahala in the next post.