Discover the story of Avudai Akkal, a woman born in the sixteenth century whose intense spiritual experience led her to become a revered saint. Learn how her devotion and surrender to a higher power transformed her life and serves as an inspiration to seekers of spiritual enlightenment.
Can women attain realization?
The legend of Avudai Akkal (ஆவுடை அக்காள்) is the answer to this.
Just as Adi Shankaracharya ic considered to be an incarnation of Lord Shiva, Avudai Akkal is considered to be an incarnation of Devi Parvathy.
Avudai Akkal was born at Sengottai in the sixteenth century.
Her parents were Shiva devotees.
Even as a child, she had a highly evolved state of mind.
She had no desire of her own.
Even basic things like taking food, somebody had to tell her.
Otherwise, she would stay without food.
But she would blindly obey whatever she was asked to do.
As per the custom of child marriage that prevailed at that time, Avudai Akkal got married at a very young age.
When she attained puberty, the first union with her husband was arranged.
She was sent inside the bridal chamber and the relatives left after closing the door.
She just stood like a stone where they left her.
As her husband kept looking at her, a garland turned into a cobra and bit him.
When the relatives opened the door in the morning, Avudai was still standing where they had left her.
She would move only if instructed.
She was declared a widow and a misfortune since her husband died soon after marriage.
The whole community avoided her.
But she didn't feel anything.
One day, she had gone to the river to take bath.
She picked up a mango leaf that was lying on the river bed to clean her teeth.
As she started rubbing hit against her teeth, she had an intense spiritual experience.
Her heart was filled with a brilliant light.
That leaf was used by Sage Ayyaval in the morning and he had thrown it into the river.
He was meditating under a Peepal tree nearby.
Avudai walked up to the Sage and prostrated before him.
Ayyaval initiated her by keeping his hand on her head.
All her ignorance disappeared and she got a clear perception of the world.
After this, Devi Saraswati started dancing on her tongue and whatever she spoke turned into divine spiritual poems.
Avudai Akkal traveled far and wide singing the glory of Lord Shiva.
When she reached Thiruvananthapuram, the king sent her golden Vilwa leaves for her worship.
After the worship, she gathered the golden leaves (nirmalya) and put them into water.
It was cleat that she found no difference between plain leaves and golden leaves.
A truly high and evolved state of mind!
In conclusion, the legend of Avudai Akkal is a powerful testament to the potential of women to attain spiritual realization. Despite facing early tragedy and societal rejection, Avudai Akkal's devotion and surrender to a higher power led to an intense spiritual experience that transformed her life. Her ability to see beyond the material world and find divinity in even the simplest of things is a true mark of an evolved mind. Her story serves as an inspiration to all those seeking a deeper connection with the divine, regardless of gender or societal expectations.
The significance of Avudai Akkal's realization for women lies in the fact that her story challenges the traditional patriarchal norms and stereotypes that women are incapable of achieving spiritual enlightenment. Her journey towards realization and her subsequent teachings and writings demonstrate that women can attain the highest spiritual levels and should be respected for their devotion and surrender to a higher power. Avudai Akkal's story serves as an inspiration for women to pursue their spiritual journeys and seek the divine within themselves, breaking free from societal expectations and limitations.
It was a Vedantic experience.
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