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K. Ayyappan

Ayyappan came to Narayana Guru as a teenager. The Guru was very much impressed with the clarity of his logic and the unflinching courage he showed in carrying out his convictions. The disciples of Socrates were not all alike, and therefore he had a different message to each one. This was true in the case of Narayana Guru too. Ayyappan was a pronounced atheist, and he believed only in the light of reason. The Guru found in him a good reformist and an educator to eradicate from the public mind caste prejudices and religious superstitions. The task entrusted to him was a Herculean one. Ayyappan had to face the direct wrath Of the religious, social and political custodians Of vested interests. Though he did not believe in God, he believed in the Guru more than anyone else. Even though he believed in the infallibility of reason, he was willing to place the Guru's reason always above his own. Ayyappan was responsible for turning many youngsters of his time from the path of easy acceptance and cowardice to one of valiant resistance and non-conformity. His work fully complemented the work of his comrade T. K. Madhavan. His watchword, 'educate and be free' had the blessings of Narayana Guru. The new soul of Kerala has in its cerebration the thought-waves of K.Ayyappan. A number of progressive thinkers like M.C. Joseph, Kuttipuzha Krishna Pi!lai, V. T. Bhattathirippad and KesavaDev were in the camp and the campaigns of Ayyappan.

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