thiruvAimozhi – 1.3.4 – yArumOr nilaimaiyan

srImathE satakOpAya nama:
srImathE rAmAnujAya nama:
srImath varavaramunayE nama:

Full series >> First Centum >> Third decad

Previous pAsuram

brahma-meditating-on-vishnu krishna-gopis

Introduction for this pAsuram

Highlights from thirukkurukaippirAn piLLAn‘s introduction

No specific introduction.

Highlights from nanjIyar‘s introduction

In this 4th pAsuram, when asked if these incarnations of bhagavAn are comprehensible by any one? nammAzhwAr replies that they can be easily comprehended by the devotees and very difficult to comprehend for those who are not devotees.

Highlights from vAdhi kEsari azhagiya maNavALa jIyar‘s introduction

Subsequently, nammAzhwAr says bhagavAn who has many forms and names through these incarnations, is not understandable by those who are unfavourable towards him and understandable by the favourable ones – this will continue forever.

Highlights from periyavAchchAn piLLai‘s introduction

Similar to nanjIyar‘s introduction.

Highlights from nampiLLai‘s introduction as documented by vadakkuth thiruvIdhip piLLai

Similar to nanjIyar‘s introduction.


yArum Or nilaimaiyan ena aRivaraiya emperumAn
yArum Or nilaimaiyan ena aRiveLiya emperumAn
pErum Or Ayiram piRa pala udaiya emperumAn
pErum Or uruvamum uLathillai ilathillai piNakkE

Word-by-Word meanings (based on vAdhi kEsari azhagiya maNavALa jIyar‘s 12000 padi)

pErum – names which highlight the divine forms
piRa – the many other forms that are highlighted by those names
pala Ayiram – many thousands
udaiya – being visible having such names/forms
yArum – those unfavourable ones even though they may be greatly knowledgable
Or nilaimaiyan – having a state
ena – thus
aRivariya – difficult to know/understand
emperumAn – the one who is my master accepting service from me
yArum – those devotees even though they may be very ignorant
Or nilaimaiyan – having a state
ena – thus
aRiveLiya – easy to know/understand
emperumAn – to the one who is my master accepting service from me
Or pErum – a name
Or uruvamum – a form
uLathillai – not present for such unfavourable persons
ilathillai – not absent for such favourable persons
piNakku – eternal argument/doubt

Simple transalation (based on vAdhi kEsari azhagiya maNavALa jIyar‘s 12000 padi)

emperumAn who has many names which highlight his divine forms and many other forms that are highlighted by those names. He is visible through such many thousands of those forms. Such emperumAn is having a state that is not understandable by those who are not devoted to him and is understandable by those devotees even though they may be very ignorant. For such unfavourable ones, he is never present with a form and name. For such favourable ones, he is never absent (implying always present) with a form and name.  Thus, there will be constant debate about his existence and non-existence. Here, AzhwAr blissfully says emperumAn many times in this pAsuram realising the favours bhagavAn has done to him.

vyAkyAnams (commentaries)

Highlights from thirukkurukaippirAn piLLAn‘s vyAkyAnam

No matter how great one may be, if one is unfavourable towards bhagavAn, they cannot understand “He is like this”. No matter how meek/ignorant one may be, if one is favourable towards bhagavAn, they can understand “He is like this”. Knowing “He is like this” means – bhagavAn who has unlimited auspicious qualities assumes unlimited forms to protect his devotees. For the unfavourable ones, since they dont understand this nature of him in a name and form, for them “He does not exist”. For the favourable ones, since they understand his nature properly, for them “He does exist”. Thus, there will always be this confusion about his existence.

Highlights from nanjIyar‘s vyAkyAnam

Similar to nampiLLai‘s vyAkyAnam.

Highlights from periyavAchchAn piLLai‘s vyAkyAnam

Similar to nampiLLai‘s vyAkyAnam.

Highlights from nampiLLai‘s vyAkyAnam as documented by vadakkuth thiruvIdhip piLLai

  • yArum… – The first “yArum” (whoever) indicates the unfavourable ones – no matter how intelligent (most intelligence) they are, because they will try to understand emperumAn (my master) with their self-efforts, they will fail to understand him. In arumpadham some pAsurams are shown to explain this – muthal thiruvanthAdhi 56 “nErE kadikkamalaththuL irunthum kANgilAn”  (Even being in the lotus flower from bhagavAn‘s navel, he does not see bhagavAn), thiruvAimozhi 7.7.11 “katkariya piraman sivan indhiran enRivarkkum katkariya kaNNan” (krishNa is difficult to see/understand by brahmA, rudhra, indhra who are difficult to be seen by us)
  • yArum… – The second “yArum” (whoever) indicates the favourable ones – no matter how ignorant (most ignorant) they are, because they understand his glories as revealed by him. We saw this in the lives of monkey (sugrIva), hunter-girl (sabari), cow-herd girl (yasOdhA).
  • emperumAn – Being amazed by this great quality of being understandable and not-understandable at the same time, AzhwAr declares him to be emperumAn (my master). ALavandhAr too glorifies emperumAn in sthOthra rathnam 21 “namO namO vAngmanasAthi bhUma yE namO namO vAngmanasaikabhUmayE…” (I offer my obeisances to you who is beyond the mind and words; I offer my obeisances to you who is in reach of mind and words).
  • pErum Or Ayiram – In mahAbhAratham bhIshma declares “…dhEvo nAma sahasravAn” (that radiant worshippable bhagavAn has 1000s of names). There is no limit for the words (names) that explain his guNams (auspicious qualities) and svarUpam (true nature).
  • piRa palavudaiya – having many divine forms. How can “piRa” (other) refer to forms? This is based on earlier precedence seen in sAsthram where nAma (name) is followed by rUpa (form). In vishNu purANam 1.5.6, it is said that “nAma  rUpancha bhUthAnAm…” (brahmA created names, forms and activities for entities such as dhEvas, etc…). In chAndhOgya upanishath 6.3.178, it is said that “…anEna jIvEna AthmanAnupravisya nAma rUpE vyAkaravANI…” (I (brahmam) enter through this jIvAthmA(s) as antharyAmi and give them names and forms). Not only that, he himself says subsequently in this pAsuram itself “pErum Or uruvamum” (name and form).
  • pErum oR uruvamum – auspicious name and divine form
  • uLathillai – For those who are unfavourable, it will be difficult to understand even at a gross level (since they are not seeing any of the auspicious qualities and the divine forms as they are).
  • ilathillai – For those who are favourable, since they see him with his qualities and form, he cannot be made non-existent ever.
  • piNakkE – Since the devotees see everything, they will constantly be performing mangaLAsAsanam. Since the others do not see anything, they will not even approach him. In between, these, AzhwAr is happy to see the emperumAn eternally.

In the next article we will the next pAsuram.

adiyen sarathy ramanuja dasan

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