The Avanaparambu mana is situated in Kumbalangadu, 3kms west of vadakancheri in the Thalapalli thaluk, a village rich in greenary. A good portion of the village, at the time belonged to the Avanaparamb MANA
From a span of 8 to 10 generations the art of ‘visha vaidhyam’ (treatment in the field of toxicology) and ‘ana chikilsa’(treatment of elephants) have been preserved with sanctity and have stood as an epitome of compassion among the hearts of the people.
Elephants belonging to the house and many brought for treatment occupied the most of the land.
A stretch of several paddy fields with heavy yields throughout the year, huge grain storage areas termed as ‘pathayapura’, ‘padipuras’ which bring out the pride of the ancient architecture, lands filled with traditional trees such as those of mango, coconut, jackfruit etc., large ponds facilitated with traditional bathing space, exclusive ponds for elephants for the same; numerous domestic aids…such was the rich heritage owned by Avanaparambmanayil Shankaran (Kunjikuttan) Namboothiripad and Parvati Antharjanam when Maheshwaran Namboothiripad was born as the second son to them in the Malayalam calendar year of 1105 in the Malayalam month of karkadagam under the star thiruonam(1930 August).
Avanaparambu Maheshwaran Namboothiripad
His father Shankaran Namboothiripad moulded himself into an engineer with sheer enthusiasm and self-acquired knowledge as his only wealth. He was a man who, with the mere knowledge of knowing the invention of radio in another part of the world, made one himself!
He constructed a wind mill and met the electrical requirements of the household with the electricity so generated. Also being a man who repaired vehicles and all varieties of electronic devices, Shankaran Namboothiripad was popularly known as ‘Radio Thirumeni’.
From the art of treatment inherited through generations and from the exposure to electronic devices through his father’s several exploits in the field, Maheshwaran Naboothiripad grew up with them deeply embedded in himself by while he underwent ‘upanayanam’ and turned 9 years old.
The very basic knowledge dealing with ‘gajashastra’ (science of elephants) was imbibed by him from his grandfather Narayana Namboothiripad who was popularly known as ‘Abhinava Palakapyan’. He lived like a shadow to his grandfather till demise.
He acquired the preliminary lessons in the field of toxicology (‘vishavaidhyam’) from Nambiyathan Namboothiripad, a government doctor in the field, who was also one of the respected members of their family. He has also written and published a book on toxicology under the title ‘Balasubhodini’.
The guru of Nambiyathan Namboothiripad , Godan Namboothiripad (Narayanan Namboothiripad’s brother), a poet, an artist and also skilled in ‘vishavaidhyam’ (toxicology), contributed to his knowledge in the field of ‘visha-gaja vaidhyam’.
During his student life itself, Maheshwaran Namboothiripad was well versed in writing prescriptions for various treatments.
Under the tradition of ‘gurukulam’, he mastered ‘kriyadis’, ‘sanskrit’, ‘hasthyayur veda’, ‘gajaraksha tanthram’ and ‘maadangaleela’ also putting the same into practise by the age of 13.
Passed out from Vadakancheri Government high school in the year 1950, he received prizes in poetry writing for four consecutive years.
A feather in the hat for him was sweeping a first class in the City Guilds examination (London) after passing out of Thrishinapally Vincent technical institute, where he did radio engineering!
Opposed by the wishes of the family, Maheshwaran Namboothiri turned down the appointment order he received from H.L., and proceeded to set up a company and called it ‘Avanaparambu radio sound’. But, in the age of 38, caught in the claws of bad health he was forced to close down the company.
In the light of the land development projects at the time taken up by the government, the land resources under their wings reduced.
During the same time, Narayanan Namboothiripad (Grandfather) met his end.
To circumvent the distance from the knowledge and blessings inherited through time, Maheshwaran Namboothiripad, with the blessings of Nambiyathan Namboothiripad, entered wholly into the traditional field of treatment.
Side-stepping from the field of enlivening devices through electricity, he switched to the field of enlivening human beings and animals.
He showed all his compassion and provided a touch of empathy to the elephants that came to him for treatment.
Without an eye for wealth or name, embracing the inherited knowledge and counting the blessings showered upon him by his great predecessors, he treats all who come to him without expecting any return and continues to do so without any obstacles.
Several instances which glorify him include incidents wherein patients in critical stage who are rejected from medical colleges have been returned to life through his unrelenting efforts. Such instances solidified his reputation and people’s trust in him which now brings patients directly to the Avanaparambu mana.
The common rituals such as the involvement of poison stone (‘visha kall’) and treatment through incantations are not included in his treatment methods.
‘Jyotsnika’, ‘prayogasammuchayam’, ‘saarasamgyahyam’, ‘lakshanamritam’, ‘vishachandrika’, ‘vishanarayaneeyam’, are some of the divine works (granthas) which form the foundation for ‘visha chikilsa’.
Even practitioners of Allopathic treatment, renowned in the field of toxicology learn the finer arts of the treatment which help avoid the side-effects, from Maheshwaran Namboothiripad.
Avanaparambu Maheshawaran Namboothiripad also treats the elephants under the Guruvayoor, Thiruampadi and Parmekavu devaswoms.
Apart from the accolades given in the form of love by many people, he has also received several awards and honours from various sectors.
Some of them are:
1.Vadakancheri town presented him the ‘Bhishagratna’ award in the year 2002.
2.In memory of Poomulli Neelakandan Namboothiripad, Shornur Keraliya Aryuveda Samajam presented him with the award -‘Shastramahodadi’ on 27-7-2002.
3.He was entrusted the P.V. Ramavariyar Memorial Excellence Award from the Coimbatore Ayurveda
4.Avaidya pharmacy on 9th of March 2008.
5. He was honoured during the celebration of 150th anniversary of first independence struggle in Kaustubham auditorium, Thrissur.
6.During the 10th state gathering of Kerala Elephant Owners Association, he was entitled to the ‘Shastramahodadi’ award.
7.He was also honoured by the ‘Kadavallur Anyonam parishad’.
8.He was awarded the ‘Vagbhadasarani’ by the ‘Ashtangahridaya satram’, Chalakudi.
9.On 14-2-2009, ‘Parmekavu Devaswam’ presented him the ‘Kizhakku Veetil Balakrishna Menon memorial award’.
10.Kuthatukulam Sreedhariyam eye hospital honoured him with the ‘Ayurveda Paramgada Bahumadi Pathram’.
11.On behalf of the ‘All Kerala Elephant Association’, respected minister- K.P.Rajendran honoured him with the ‘Hasthayurveda Acharya’ award.
12.‘Charitra Padhana Samithi Pratibha Sangamam prashasti pathram’ was honoured upon him by the ‘Souhridam centre’, Thalapalli Thaluk on 29-7-2009.
13. In 2008, he was entrusted with the ‘Kirtimudra’ award by the ‘Charitra Padhana Samithi’.
14.In 2005, he received a token of appreciation from the ‘Utralikkavu Pooram’ Committee.
15.On 24-5-2010, during the ‘Navadi pranamam’ of Raghavan Tirumilpadu, he was honoured with ‘Acharya Vandanam’.
Apart from the above mentioned achievements which flood the mass media, this prodigious life and his lineage have been passed on to the next generation through his son Dr.Shankaran Namboodiripad.
After completing his learning from ‘Kottaikal Ayurvedashala’, he was positioned as doctor in the Government Ayurveda Department (Indian Systems of Medicine). He also has a daughter, Girija and wife, Sreedevi Antharjanam.
Accumulating a lifetime’s wealth of knowledge, he became a man of science. He also translated the ‘100 dashakam’ of Sree Narayaneeyam in which he recreated the ‘vishwaroopa darshanam’ in a practical and feasible form, which brought out the multifaceted personality in him.
Avanaparambu Maheshwaran Namboodiripadu stands as a bright, shining sun among us spreading rays of knowledge and experience far and wide.