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Bhakta-Vatsala Iord Jagemnath's pastimes
with his Devotees
Ramanujacarya in puri
Ramanujacarya visited Puri in the twelfth century. Ramanu-jacarya is the foundct-acliarya of the Sri sampradaya. He was a great Vaisnava acarya and also famous as very learned personality. He preached the doctrine of visista advaitavad and vigorously op¬posed the teachings of Sankarcharya At that time King Choda Ganga Deva ruled the state of Orissa. Ramanuja had much influence over the king. Ramanuja rec¬ognized Lord Jagannath as Maha-Vishnu. He saw that the Lord was being worshiped with the mixture of different processes. He was concerned that low-caste people, such as Daitapatis could take part in offering puja. Ramanuja argued that Lord Jagannath should be worshiped with the Vedic process only. He wanted to change the process of puja in Jagannath temple. He presented many changes to the king and made him agree to his proposals. Jagannaths sevaks objected to the new system. But the King would not listen to their appeals. Finally the date was fixed.for Ramanuja to change the puja process in Jagannath temple.
The King and all of the brahmanas arrived at the temple in the early morning. They announced that from that day, a new sys¬tem of worship would be introduced by the great acarya, Ramanuja. Everyone, including the king, waited anxiously at the tem¬ple for the arrival of Ramanujacarya. But he never showed. After waiting for a long time, the king ordered the pujari to start the worship of Lord Jagannath according to the previous sys¬tem. Then the king ordered his minister to find Ramanujacarya. It was discovered that during the previous night while Ramanu-jacharya was sleeping, Lord Jagannath appeared to him. The Lord chastised him, "Who are you to change my puja system? Let My devotees worship me as they have been worshiping Me from the beginning. They are my special devotees. I have a special relation¬ship wkh them. You do not understand this. Do not disturb them. Get out of here!" The Lord flew Ramanuja out of Orissa by the help of Garuda. The next day Ra¬manuja was found in South India in a village called Kurma Kshetra.