Boganathar – NOTE

from www.murugan.org

Bhogar was a South Indian by birth, belonging to the caste of goldsmiths, who became a siddhapurusha under the guidance of Kalanginaathar. In Bhogar’s Saptakanda he reveals details of various medicinal preparations to his disciple Pullippani (so named as he is believed to have wandered in the forests atop a puli or tiger) and at every stage he quotes his guru as the authority. Also Pulippani must have been a young man then, as he is often referred to as a balaka.

It is said that as per the last wishes of his guru, Bhogar proceeded to China to spread the knowledge of siddha sciences and strangely enough his journey is said to have been made with the aid of an aircraft; he demonstrated to the Chinese the details of the construction of the aircraft and later built for them a sea-going craft using a steam engine. The details of these and other experi- ments demonstrated by Bhogar in China are clearly documented in the Saptakanda.

Bogar’s guru, Kālāngi Nāthar, is believed to be a Chinese who attained siddhi in South India and thus became included among the Eighteen Siddhars.

Lao Tse – the founder of Taoism (5th century B.C.) was the first Chinese to propound the theory of duality of matter — the male Yang and female Yin — which conforms to the Siddha concept of Shiva – Shakti or positive-negative forces. This very same concept was first revealed by the adi-siddhar Agasthya Rishi, whose period is as old as the Vedas, which have been conservatively dated at 3500 B.C. Also alchemy as a science was practised in China only after B.C. 135 and was practiced as an art until B.C. 175 when a royal decree was enacted banning alchemical preparation of precious metals by the Celestial Empire; these details are recounted in the two existing Chinese books of alchemy Shih Chi and Treatise of Elixir Refined in Nine Couldrons, both dated to the first century B.C.

The emergence of Lao Tse with his theory of duality of matter and the journey of Bhogar to China seem to have taken place about the same time and it is even possible that Bhogar himself went under the name of Lao Tse in China, like another Siddharishi Sriramadevar, who was known as Yacob in Arabia.

This seems likely considering that:

  1. before Lao Tse the concept of duality of matter finds no mention in any Chinese treatise;
  2. alchemy as a science emerged only after B.C. 135, i.e. four centuries after Lao Tse;
  3. there was a sudden spurt of alchemical practice aher the emergency of Lao Tse; and
  4. the duality of matter and alchemy have been mentioned in South Indian scriptures that antidate Lao Tse by centuries.

The shrine at the top of the hill, though later than the Tiru Avinankudi temple, has overshadowed the older temple in the present century due to its popular appeal. Created by Bhogar, it was maintained after him by sage Pulippani and his descendants almost as their personal and private temple.

During the time of Tirumalai Nayak, his general Ramappayyan handed over the puja rights to newly brought Brahmin priests. The descendants of Pulippani were compensated for the loss of this right by being given:

  • Certain duties of superintendence
  • Right to some annual presents
  • Right to shoot off, at the Dasara Festival, the arrow which symbolises Subramanya’s victory over asuras.
  • Right to be buried at the foot of the steps leading to the hill, if some of them so chose.