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Editor's Note - 47 (April 1, 2012)

Time To Reflect As Another Milestone Is Crossed

Dear Fellow-Bhagavathas,

The divine journey of www.svdd.com has left behind another milestone, so to say, as we have completed five years since the start of our first interactive programme ‘Trail Our Glorious Sampradaya’, the open monthly online quiz. The 61st episode of the quiz has gone online today.

Indeed, it is a great feeling of satisfaction to be of whatever little service to the cause of the hoary tradition of Srivaishnavam in general and to our Temple in particular. But it would not have been possible without your commitment and support. We record our sincere thanks to you for this.

Thought a little review of some of the features of the site will be in order at this juncture.

We strongly believe that the success of any public activity is directly proportional to the extent of interaction with the complementary side, which in this case, is the viewers. That is the reason why the open quiz, which involves participation from viewers of all ages, was started in the first place. It still is a much-awaited programme in the circles of our Sampradaya — come the 1st of every month — even after five years. This only reinforces the fact that people are not averse to these matters. In fact, they look forward to suitable opportunities to learn and express themselves. This is precisely what svdd.com is doing — providing exposure.

No doubt, some of the questions in each episode are difficult, but, it is our conscious decision to make the participants do some solid referencing, which in turn, will enrich their familiarity and knowledge in the subject. These questions stimulate the brain, make one delve deep into the subject and hone one’s analytical acumen in pursuit of the correct answer. Furthermore, concerted efforts to crack the proverbial nut through discussions among participants become common. A little challenge is an integral part of any worthwhile learning process and a welcome thing too. There will be pride and fulfillment with hard-earned knowledge. We are sure the 200-odd regular participants will corroborate this.

That is why a certain standard is being maintained in the preparation of questions and at the same time even participants with some involvement and rudimentary knowledge can answer a few questions, so that they are also not discouraged. As we have maintained all through, the prizes are just a representation of our appreciation and we regard equally highly all those who perform creditably.

The ‘Junior Quiz’ was introduced in October 2008 with a view to inculcating in the young minds the important tenets of our tradition. It can be said that this is a kind of graduation to prepare children for the Senior Quiz, though the latter is technically open to all. For more than a year now, to make it more interesting for young participants, thematic quizzes are presented. This has also made the orbit of referencing less expansive and that much easier for about 50 enthusiastic, young participants.

Annual prizes for ‘Sustained Commitment’ are being awarded to those who participate in these quizzes in all the months, irrespective of their scores.

Now on to the immensely-popular ‘Weekly Paasuram Quest’ which has reached its 100th rollicking week with a participant base of about 180. That scores of people eagerly await the stroke of 12 in the midnight as Saturday draws to a close every week is a true index of the impact the programme has made. A chance to experience the great outpourings of Azhwars is the real reward and the quarterly prizes for ‘Sustained Excellence’ are just a bonus.

Education leads to evolution. Now that the majority of the participants have attained a certain level of proficiency in the programme, it is time to make this a little more interesting and challenging. Starting with this month, the name of the Divyadesam, if it occurs in the Paasuram, may be masked suitably. We are sure, the participants will measure up to this and continue to do well.

The ‘Archives’ sections of all the three programs have grown into a veritable storehouse of knowledge.

The ‘Gallery’ section where photos/videos of Uthsavams and events are posted, is another most-hit link of the site. The discerning would have noticed the enhanced clarity and quality of the photos for a few months now.

The Uthsavams that are to be held at the Temple during the days ahead can be checked in ‘Upcoming Events’ which is being updated periodically.

The ‘Quiz Master In You’ is a programme that was launched three years ago to enable the participants to contribute one question per quiz. There is keen participation but the questions more often than not fail to make the grade either for want of quality or being repetitive. It is requested that more meticulousness is employed in coining a question and the same is checked for repetitiveness. The ‘Archives’ under the ‘Quiz / Results’ menu may be made use of for cross-checking.

The ‘Articles’ section, which contains a few well-written series, and a powerpoint program on Swami Desika's life, is one area which has been static for a while now. We will try to set it right suitably in due course of time.

The ‘Valued Views’ section displays feedbacks from participants/visitors is regularly updated and has now been made as a main menu.

Finally, there has been a tremendous response for the ‘Live Webcast of AnnaKoota Uthsavam’ held at the Temple on March 11. Thousands of devotees from all over the globe have watched the proceedings and some of them have sent in feedback expressing their thanks for the initiative. For those who missed the event, recording of the same is still available under ‘What’s New’.

For the record, this is the second Live Webcast by svdd.com. The previous one dates back to February 22, 2009, when the 45th Srimath Azhagiyasingar offered Swarna Kavacham to the Uthsavar idol of Lord Srinivasa here, which coincided with Pushpothsavam.

Meet you in the next Note.

எங்கள் தூப்புல் பிள்ளை பாதம் என் சென்னியதே!

Natteri P. Srihari (a) Lakshmi Narasimhacharyar

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