Worshipping God through forest cultivation: Sode Swamiji’s way

 Worshipping God through forest cultivation: Sode Swamiji’s way
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Udupi, July 17, 2021: In recent years, development has become synonymous with damage to nature. Chopping trees for developmental works has become common. But Swamiji of Sode Vadiraja Matha has taken up an effort to reverse it.

While 100-plus acres of land would make people think of constructing structures and buildings for commercial purposes, Sri Sode Vadiraja Matadhipathi Sri Vishwavallabha Tirtha Sripadaru has taken up a campaign to convert 116-acre land belonging to Sode Matha near Hoovinakere Matha into a ‘mini forest,’ comprising various types of fruit-bearing trees, sandalwood, and teak.

Five feet deep trench would be dug around the land. Water recharge pits will be dug apart from the massive pond in the middle.

Hoovinakere, situated near Kumbasi of Kundapur Taluk, is the birthplace of Sri Vadiraja Sripadaru, a great revolutionary saint of Sode Matha who lived for 120 years from 1480 AD to 1600 AD.

Hoovinakere literally means a pond with flowers. Centuries ago this place must have had a massive pond with flowers. Interestingly now in the new project, Sri Vishwavallabha Tirtha Sripadaru plans to have a massive pond amidst the lush green mini forest.

Akshaya Shetty and Sushma Rao, who have started ‘Hasirunadu,’ in line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Aatma Nirbhar Bharat, will supervise the project.

Sri Vishwavallabha Tirtha Swamiji inaugurated the project by planting a sapling. Kundapur MLA Haladi Srinivas Shetty, Assistant Commissioner K Raju, Sode Matha Diwan Padigaru Srinivas Tantri, Ratnakumar, and forest department officials were present.

Sode Matha and Nature:
Worshipping nature has great importance in Sode Matha. The presiding deity of the Matha is Shri Bhu Varaha. The idol was given by Sri Madhvacharya to Sri Vishnu Tirtharu (the first in the linage of Sode Matha.)
Shri Varaha is the third incarnation of Lord Vishnu where he kills Hiranyaksha and protects Bhu Devi (Mother earth). The story goes that Varaha had reinstalled earth in its orbit. Thus protecting earth and nature is one of the important ‘seva’ to Lord Bhu Varaha.

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