The Alwars were Tamil poet saints with ancient Dravidian Culture of south India who lived between sixth and ninth centuries and espoused devotion to Lord Vishnu through their compositions, singing love and surrender to the Lord. They come from all walks of life and all strata of society and were born in different parts of the country. They revitalized the Indian religious milieu, sparking a renewal of devotional worship throughout the subcontinent. Traveling from place to place, from temple to temple, they composed exceedingly beautiful poetry to their Divine Beloved, Lord Vishnu, as an expression of their love for the Divine.
These four days of festivities and rituals include chanting of mantras 10,000 times, bhajans, and rituals such as a Maha Sudarshana Homam, a fire ritual aimed at world peace (on the third morning), performed toward Sri Chakkarathalwar, who is also known as Sudarshan Alwar.
For more details, see www.sssbpt.org/Pages/Prasanthi_Nilayam/alwarfestivalreport.html.