1978 - The Avatar’s biological family

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The Family of His Divine Holiness

The devout and blessed family in which His Divine Holiness chose to be born, lived for generations in the town of Tiruvannamalai, South India. His paternal forefathers are among the most ancient families to reside in Tiruvannamalai, with records dating back more than 300 years, serving Arunachaleshwara as key administrators and rulers of the whole land1. Until the entire treasury and most sacred heritage was robbed from them by demonic invading forces, this family served Arunachaleshwara with the most sincere devotion. As the final abatement to the destruction of this great heritage and as a reward for their continuous demonstration of piousness and simplicity in serving Arunachaleshwara, Arunachala Himself decided to take birth in this family

Paternal Line

Three generations prior to the advent of The Avatar, Sri Kumaraswamy Chettiar, who would be the great grandfather of His Divine Holiness, lived a profoundly devoted lifestyle, worshipping the shiva-linga, as per the instructions of Shiva Himself. One day, he was overwhelmed by an intense vairagya, the most earnest intention - to renounce all worldly desires and attain liberation. He decided to forego all of his wealth. He took a bath in the temple water tank, shed all of his karmas2and emerged as a paramahamsa, an enlightened being3. Kumarasamy Chettiar spent the rest of his life in Varanasi in North India - the spiritual capital city of India. He committed thenceforth only with Paramashiva, until the time came when he merged with Him in the ultimate and final state.

Kumarasamy Chettiar

Kumarasamy Chettiar had five children: two sons and three daughters. Eldest is Sami Chettiar, followed by Amma Kannammal, Kannammal Ammal, Dhanakoti Ammal and Annamalai Chettiar.

Sri Sami Chettiar inherited the agricultural lands of their family’s heritage and managed the workers and sale of grain from these farms for all of his life, living as a Zamindar- wealthy landlord. As a man whose work revolved around the natural and simple laws of agriculture, this quality permeated into his life outside of work. Sami Chettiar lived an austere and celibate lifestyle of minimal possessions, having only two dhotis4, eating only one meal per day and sleeping on the ground on a thin mat called ‘pathamadai pai’ as it was woven in a village named Pathamadai . He was married to Dhanakoti Ammal (not be confused with his sister whose name is also Dhanakoti Ammal) but they never had any children. Sami Chettiar passed away in 1969, while Dhanakoti Ammal lived on until she was ~103 years old, in the very joint-family establishment of The Avatar’s household.

Sami Chettiar

Sri Annamalai Chettiar was the second son and last child of Kumarasamy Chettiar, and married Anusuya ammal. Annamalai Chettiar died in 1970 before the marriage of his second son, Sri Arunachalam and therefore before the advent of The Avatar. Anusuya ammal demonstrated how a chaste widow can live powerfully, dedicate herself to the welfare of the people who lived around her and live with utmost integrity to Paramashiva and the ecosystem she was part of. She went to the Arunachaleshwara temple everyday, and devotedly performed girivalam, walking the full 14 km circumambulation path around Arunachala up until the last day of her life.

Annamalai Chettiar and his wife Anusuya Ammal (immediate paternal grandparents of The SPH)

Kannammal is the third child of Kumarasami Chettiar. (The second daughter Amma Kannammal's photograph is rare and yet to be found by the biological family of The SPH and handed over to the Autobiography team.)

Kannammal and her husband Rajagopal Chettiar.

Dhanakoti Ammal - Kumarasamy Chettiar's fourth child, who devotedly worshipped Lord Muruga and lived a disciplined, active and healthy lifestyle until she passed away at 93 years of age.

Kannammal and her husband Rajagopal Chettiar.

Due to their supreme devotion and sacrifice for consecutive generations, this family was blessed with the birth of Paramashiva Himself, who only found more and more reason to grace the family where devotion and surrender to Him is so deeply ingrained in their blood.

maternal line

The maternal grandfather of His Divine Holiness was Sri Raju Mudaliar from the small village of Pakkam on the road from Vizhupuram to Pondicherry in Tamilnadu, South India. Before the age of eighteen, Raju Mudaliar's parents tragically passed away and he was left orphaned even before physical maturity. Without anyone to call his own, Raju Mudaliar walked to the town of Tiruvannamalai and adopted Lord Arunachaleshwara as his beloved father. For his simple integrity and devotion, Paramashiva accepted him as His family and blessed him by incarnating as his own grandson in January 1978. Raju Mudaliar began to work in the streets of Tiruvannamalai, first laboring as a delivery boy for the rice shop owners and moving the 100 kg rice bags, and then slowly becoming a learned and trusted assistant for them. Soon, Raju Mudaliar established his own rice shop and became well known and influential in the grain trade in and around Tiruvannamalai. He married Yellammal and their first child was Ma Lokanayaki, who would be the mother of The Avatar.

Raju Mudaliar and Yellammal

Ma Lokanayaki was born in 1955 in the Thirumanjana Gopuram Street of Tiruvannamalai, South India. For 45 years she lived within four streets (called Maada veethi) surrounding the Arunachaleshwara Temple. For the Jagatguru, who is the Guru who guides the whole Universe, Ma Lokanayaki was the blessed mother who guided His first baby steps, by holding His little fingers, as He was in the form of a doe-eyed infant adored by the whole of Tiruvannamalai.

In the beginning years of her life, Ma Lokanayaki attended the same school where the young Avatar, His Divine Holiness Himself, would enact many leelas, years later; the Kanniga Parameshwari School. In around her 7th or 8th grade, the great enlightened being, Isakki Swamigal, who was His Guru who guided Him in the study of Vedanta and Tantra, instructed Ma Lokanayaki to do girivalam,the circumambulation of Arunachala5 . She was to follow this intense spiritual practice every day for a year, in order to prepare her body for being the channel for Paramashiva to incarnate in human form. That year diligently every day after her morning ablutions, she offered her whole self to Paramashiva in the austere practice of performing the circumambulation of Arunachala just as she would years later when she became the vessel for Him to enter the physical plane. After many births of intense penance and sincere devotion, Ma Lokanayaki’s mind and inner space was already made perfect for birthing Paramashiva Himself, yet her physical body needed to undergo purification. During these early mornings, as her muscles were still maturing at the age of 12, she exercised her body with intense devotion to Paramashiva and made it ready for its divine purpose. Just as she would walk with Paramashiva in her womb years later, Ma Lokanayaki walked, carrying Him in her heart at age 12, unknowingly following the instructions of Paramashiva who has said in the Arunachala Mahatmyam6 : āsannaprasavā nārī yathā gacchedanākulam, tathā pradakṣiṇaṃ kuryādaśṛnvaṃśca padadhvaniṃ, Arunachala Mahatmyam (Just as a pregnant woman nearing delivery walks gently and calmly, similarly one should circumambulate (the sacred Arunachala hill) even such that one does not hear one's own footsteps)

In 1974, with the blessings and guidance of Mataji Vibhutananda Puri, the direct disciple of Isakki Swamigal and next inheritor of Arunachala Sampradaya, Anusuya ammal, mother of Sri Arunachalam, and Raju Mudaliar, arranged the marriage of their two children. The date of their auspicious nuptials was set for June 26 1974. On the occasion, the whole town of Tiruvannamalai and the Cosmos itself celebrated their union in matrimony as the divine leela , the enactment, of Paramashiva Himself on Planet Earth was about to unfold7.

Biological parents of The Avatar, Lokanayaki and Arunachalam, on their wedding day, 26 June 1974


  1. There are records which are currently being collected of taxes being paid by the family of His Divine Holiness for the last 300 years.
  2. impact of unfulfilled actions and words from the past
  3. His Divine Holiness reveals how Kumarasamy Chettiar renounced all his wealth in the talk “ Siddha Tradition Day 4 Mystical or Psychic - Nithyananda Morning Satsang (16 Nov, 2010) Message”, from 16 Nov 2010 YouTube Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F4a0tQsDwTA
  4. Name for traditional Hindu robes
  5. Ma Lokanayaki recalls this one instruction given by Isakki Swamigal to her when she was in 7th grade even years later, as it was one of the first initiations she received from these great enlightened beings who would facilitate the happening superconsciousness through her body.
  6. Arunachala Mahatmyam chapter 9 verse 37
  7. Marriage Album of Ma Lokanayaki and Sri Arunachalam: 26 June 1974 , 25 June 1974

Click here to proceed to read about the Descent of His Divine Holiness