A big salute to "Ezham Arivu" team for making such a wonderful movie. I can't say how much the movie has moved me for the simple fact that it is about a spiritual person , Bodhidharma, who was from "Kanchipuram [காஞ்சிபுரம்] " in Tamil Nadu [தமிழ்நாடு], travelled far and wide and reached China during the 5th century. He was the third son of the Pallava King who had their headquarters in Kanchipuram.
Bodhidharma was the disciple of Prajnatara who was the 27th patriarch of Buddha which makes him the 28th patriarch of Buddha. Very well trained in Siddha [சித்த வைத்தியம் ], Herbal medicine [மூலிகை சாஸ்திரம்], Varma kalai [வர்மக்கலை], kalari [களரி] and traditional martial arts [fighting with sticks - சிலம்பாட்டம், hand fight - மல்யுத்தம்], he travelled from Kanchipuram to China which was a three year journey crossing countries and borders, finally crossing Yangtze river and landing in Nan-yueh which is modern day Chinese province of Guangdong, Guangxi and northern Vietnam.
According to the "Anthology of Patriarchal Hall", Bodhidharma moved to Mount Song which is the central mountain of the "Five Sacred Mountains of Taoism" and is located in the Henan province of China. This is were the famous "Shaolin Temple" is located which is considered to be the birthplace of Zen Bhuddism and Shaolin Kung Fu.
Can you understand were I am coming to???
Yes, Bodhidharma was and is known to be the founder and teacher Shaolin Kung Fu and Zen Bhuddism which has spread its wings to Japan.
Bodhidharma is lovingly called as "Damo" in China and even today his statue is present in the Shaolin temple.
I cringed in shame at not knowing some thing of such value. On further thought, when we are in school or college we read and learn what we are thought from textbooks and to some extent from the web but related to subject matters. I am sure I would have remembered something like this if it was mentioned in our history books. My UG or PG does not involve history, so I am not aware whether this fact or any such facts are mentioned.
If so please let me know!!
The movie in itself leads to so many questions.... Why are we not aware of this great person? Where did Bhuddism which originated in India disappear and why? Please read this link : How Bodhidharma and his buddhism disappeared from Tamilnadu
To read more about Bodhidharma, please visit the following links :Bodhidharma , Dharmu - Father of Zen Bhuddism , Shaolin Temple , Kanchipuram , Bodhidharma's travel.
The movie ofcourse is made for commercial purposes with all the entertainment bits but it does convey the message. India is a land of rich cultural heritage, philosophies, art forms, astronomy, medicine and traditions. I am just wondering how much more of history is hidden behind a curtain.
The movie itself begins with normal people, both in Chennai and China being questioned about who "Bodhidharma" is. As predicted none of the Tamil speaking fellow Indians seemed to know while most of the citizens from our neighbouring country knew who he was and addressed him by the name "Damo".
A very big salute to A.R.Murugadoss for making such a movie and bring forgotten and hidden history to light. No better way to show gratitude than by making this sweet treat.
If time permits do watch this movie....
Arisi paruppu payasam is Kongunad special and is my personal favourite..:) This is my gran's recipe and it has quite a lengthy cooking process.
For the recipe:
Pacharisi: 1/2 cup.
Moong dal: 2 tbsp.
Fresh coconut pieces: a handful.
Whole milk: 6 cups.
Cardamom pods: 4.
Powdered jaggery: 1 and 1/2 cups.
Warm water: 1 and 1/2 cups.
Ghee: 3 tbsp.
Saffron: 1 pinch.
Whole cashews: 6-7.
Pachai karpooram [edible camphor]: a pinch.
1.Mix the jaggery and the warm water and gently simmer for 7-8 minutes until all the jaggery is dissolved. Once the syrup is slightly thick, remove from flame. Cool and strain. Reserve for later use.
2. In a heavy bottomed vessel simmer the milk for about half an hour. The amount of milk should be reduced to 4 cups.
3.Meanwhile, take the rice and moong dal together in a pan. Add 1 tbsp of ghee and saute in low flame until fragrant. This will take around 5 minutes. Cool and pulse in the mixie, once or twice until coarsely broken.
4.Empty the contents into a pressure pan. In the same mixie jar, grind the coconut with 1/2 cup of water to a smooth paste.
5.Add this to the rice dal mix in the pressure pan. Add the reduced milk, saffron, cardamom and cloves.
6.Close the lid and cook for 2 whistles in medium flame.
7.Remove from flame and transfer the contents to a heavy bottomed vessel and simmer in low flame for 5- 6 minutes.
8. Add the jaggery syrup and mix well.
9. Simmer for 8- 10 minutes, stirring frequently until the payasam has thickened.
10.Remove from flame and add the pachai karpooram [edible camphor]. Mix well.
11. In a small pan heat the rest of the ghee. Fry the cashews and raisins until golden. Add to the payasam.
Serve warm or cold. You can also add one sliced ripe banana preferably [poovan pazham] after removing the payasam from the flame. The heat from the payasam will caramelise the banana giving a wonderful flavour to the dessert.
Notes: When roasting the rice and dal, be very careful not to brown the grains. The amount of the reduced milk should around 4 cups. If you are really short of time, then you can completely skip this step and just add 4 cups of milk directly to the ground rice and dal mix and proceed with the rest of the recipe steps.
After step 7, if payasam is too thick then add 1/2 cup of milk.
The colour of the jaggery makes all the difference in the appearance of the payasam. The lighter the jaggery the pale brown the payasam.
Scribbled by Reva.