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Works on the Life History of Azhvars: There are many details professed orally and passed on by hearsay, regarding the glories of Azhvars. Of these the Guruparamparas (Hereditary details and line of succession of Gurus) are vital. They are written in manipravala (mixure of Tamil and Sanscrit) style. Further a work in the form of poems composed by ‘Vadivazhagiya Nambi dasar’ a very devoted and scholarly author composed a work ‘Guruparamparaprabhavam’ . This is also highly enlightening and there are some more works throwing light on Azhvars.
The Name ‘Azhvars’:The term ‘Azhvar’ refers to people deeply submitting themselves to the Lord, in total devotion. In ancient literary works and Sasanas the term ‘Azhvar’ represents ‘those sagacious people standing foremost’. Thirupuli Azhvar (The tamarind tree that was special) and KoilAzhvar (the place wherein the Lord is kept in Individual homes) are a few examples.
Of the 12 Azhvars, one is woman and others belong to different castes. Nammazhvar belonged to Vellar tribe, Thirumangaiazhvar the Kallar tribe, Thiruppanazhvar belonged to the fifth caste. But all these Azhvars had ardent faith and intence love towards the Lord. Hence they are grouped one.

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