Daily Archives: July 16, 2016

Arththi Prabandham – 14

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This pAsuram is connected to pAsuram 12. The previous pAsuram (pAsuram 13) was a deviation (prAsangikam).  In pAsuram 12, SrI rAmAnuja asked maNavALa mAmunigaL, “Oh! maNavALa mAmunigaL! You are telling me that you surrendered unto my feet because your AchAryan had told you to do so. You say that your act of surrender to me upon your AchAryan’s direction is the way to liberate you. Will that surrender suffice in your case? Don’t you need to have any other qualification apart from your surrender?” This is what maNavALa mAmunigaL assumed SrI rAmAnuja had in mind. To this question, maNavALa mAmunigaL gives an answer in this pAsuram. maNavALa mAmunigaL says that “Oh! SrI rAmAnuja! If a person has all the desired qualifications, then why would he fall at your feet? You are a person who blesses all those who does not have any qualifications whatsoever. Hence, refugees including me should be protected only by you. If not for you, there is no other place for us”.


adhigAramundEl arangar irangArO
adhigAram illAdhArkkanRO – ethirAsa
nI iranga vEnduvadhu nIyum adhigArigaLukkE
irangil en seyvOm yAm


Word-by-Word Meanings

adhigAramundEl – if one is completely qualified across the dimensions of knowledge and its subsequent practice
arangar –  periya perumAL (SrI ranganAthan)
irangArO – will he not come down and help him?
ethirAsa – But hey ethirAsa, you
adhigAram illAdhArkkanRO – will step down to help out those people who does not have an iota of any of the aforementioned qualification. Is it not true?
nI iranga vEnduvadhu – We request you to come down and help such people (including me)
nIyum adhigArigaLukkE irangil –  Even you, who is the sole refuge for all the refugees, start to help out only those people who have qualifications
en seyvOm yAm – what do we do then?

Simple Translation:

In this pAsuram, maNavALa mAmunigaL tells SrI rAmAnuja that he does not have any other place to go except his (SrI rAmAnuja’s) lotus feet. SrI rAmAnuja is the only person who can save any person who does not have any refuge. SrI rAmAnuja does not look out for any qualification in a person in order to surrender unto him. It is periya perumAL who looks out for qualification such as gyAnam (knowledge) and its associated practice (anushtAnam). maNavALa mAmunigaL concludes by saying that if even SrI rAmAnuja starts to look out for qualifications, then there is absolutely no place for him and others to go.


maNavALa mAmunigaL tells SrI rAmAnuja “Oh SrI rAmAnuja! Look at periya perumAL! He blesses people like nammAzhvAr as per her request “puNNAnthuzhAme porunIrth thiruvarangA aruLAy (thiruviruththam 28). nammAzhvAr after being liberated by the blessings of periya perumAL says “aruL sUdi uyndhavan (thiruvAimozhi 7.2.11). periya perumAL blesses only those people who have qualifications.  But look at people like us. We do not have any such qualification. Oh the leader of all yathis (sanyAsIs)!!! You have to help people like us who have no such thing called qualification. You are the sole refuge for all those innumerable souls that have no place to go. But even if you start to look out for qualifications and help only those who have them, what qualification can people like us show in order to be recipient of your mercy? We would never be liberated forever.

adiyEn santhAna rAmAnuja dAsan

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thiruvAimozhi – 3.1.10 – maRaiyAya

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Previous pAsuram


Introduction for this pAsuram

Highlights from thirukkurukaippirAn piLLAn‘s introduction

No specific introduction.

Highlights from nanjIyar‘s introduction

In tenth pAsuram – AzhwAr says “For you who is known only through vEdham and the lord of all, is it surprising that brahmA et al, who are created and bestowed knowledge by you, know you as “Iswara” (lord) and praise you?”.

Highlights from vAdhi kEsari azhagiya maNavALa jIyar‘s introduction

Subsequently, AzhwAr says “Even those who consider themselves to be the lords, since it is apt for them, knowing your lordship and taking shelter of you is not at all surprising”.

Highlights from periyavAchchAn piLLai‘s introduction

See nanjIyar‘s introduction.

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

See nanjIyar‘s introduction.


maRaiyAya nAl vEdhaththuL ninRa malarch chudarE
muRaiyAl ivvulagellAm  padaiththidandhuNdumizhndhaLandhAy
piRai ERu sadaiyAnum nAnmuganum indhiranum
iRai Adhal aRindhEththa vIRRiruththal idhu viyappE?


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

maRaiyAya – that which conceals (its meanings for those who are filled with rajas (passion) and thamas (ignorance))
nAl vEdhaththu – vEdhams which are four-fold (starting with rig vEdham etc which reveals its meaning to those who are situated in sathvam (goodness))
uL ninRa – being the intrinsic essence
malar – having blossomed
sudarE! – being in the form of a radiant light
muRaiyAl – at every (creation) cycle
i – indha – this
ulagellAm – worlds
padaiththu – created
idandhu  – lifting them up (by entering into the causal ocean)
uNdu – consuming them (during total deluge)
umizhndhu – spitting them out again
aLandhAy – oh one who measured them (so that others cannot claim ownership)!
iRaiyAdhal – being the lord (being revealed by vEdham only and engaging in creation etc)
aRindhu – knowing thus (about you)
piRai ERu sadaiyAnum – rudhra who is engaged in enjoyment and austerity due to having chandrakalA (crescent moon) in his head and having matted hair respectively,
nAnmuganum – brahmA (who has all the abilities to engage in creation)
indhiranum – indhra (who is the lord of 3 worlds namely svarga lOka, bhuvar lOka and bhUlOka)
Eththa – to take shelter of you (by praising you)
vIRu – being great/distinct (since he is the one who gives shelter to all)
iruththal idhu – such stature
viyappE – is it surprising?

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

Oh one who is in the form of a blossomed radiant light, being the intrinsic essence of vEdhams which conceal (its meanings for those who are filled with rajas (passion) and thamas (ignorance)) and which are being four-fold (starting with rig vEdham etc which reveals its meaning to those who are situated in sathvam (goodness))! Oh one who time and again creates the worlds,  lifts them up (by entering into the causal ocean), consumes them (during total deluge), spits them out again, and measures them (so others cannot claim ownership)! In such case, is it surprising to see such stature of being the great shelter (since he is the one who gives shelter to all) for rudhra who is engaged in enjoyment and austerity due to having chandrakalA (crescent moon) in his head and having matted hair respectively, brahmA (who has all the abilities to engage in creation), indhra (who is the lord of 3 worlds namely svarga lOka, bhuvar lOka and bhUlOka) et al and being praised by them knowing that you are the lord.

vyAkyAnams (commentaries)

Highlights from thirukkurukaippirAn piLLAn‘s vyAkyAnam

See vAdhi kEsari azhagiya maNavALa jIyar‘s translation.

Highlights from nanjIyar‘s vyAkyAnam

See nampiLLai‘s vyAkyAnam.

Highlights from periyavAchchAn piLLai‘s vyAkyAnam

See nampiLLai‘s vyAkyAnam.

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

  • maRaiyAya – SrI rangarAja sthavam 1.19 “Adhau vEdhA: pramANam smruthirupakuruthE sEthihAsai: purANair nyAyaissArdham thvadharchAvidhimupari parikshIyathE pUrvabhAga: | UrdhvO bhAgasthvadhIhAguNavibhavaparigyApanaisthvathpadhApthau vEdhyO vEdhaiScha sarvairahamithi bhagavan! svEna cha vyAchakartha: ||” (Oh bhagavAn! vEdhams are primary pramANam (authentic source of knowledge, without need for external validation). manu smruthi is helping along with ithihAsams and purANams, pUrva and uththara mImAmsA. The karma kANda (pUrva bhAgam) reveals everything about how to worship you. The glorious uththara kANda (Urdhva bhAgam) leads to your divine feet by revealing your activities such as creation etc, the qualities that are required for such activities, the realms that are under your control etc. Also, you yourself have revealed [in bhagavath gIthA etc] that you are only known through vEdham which is divided in to pUrva and uththara kANdam). Here vEdham is highlighted by two words – maRai (one that conceals) and vEdham (one that reveals) – this is because, for those who are outside vEdham without any faith in it, it hides itself and for those who are faithful, it reveals its meanings. pUrvA bhAgam (karma kANdam) explains the process of worship and uththara bhAgam (uththara kANdam) explains the nature of the object of worship (bhagavAn). The lustre acquired due to being revealed by all of vEdham as said in bhagavath gIthA 15.15 “vEdhaiScha sarvair ahamEva vEdhya:“. Oh one who is shining in the vEdhams as the lord of everyone and has unsurpassed sweetness.
  • muRaiyAl … – vEdhams explain that he is the protector of all.
  • muRaiyAl – two meanings – 1) relationship – due to him being the lord, 2) repeatedly in every cycle of creation. During deluge, when the AthmA was devoid of karaNa (body) and kaLEbara (senses) and without any means to enjoyment in this world or for liberation, emperumAn creates them [i.e., gives the body, senses, ability to act etc], assuming the form of mahAvarAham (great wild-boar/pig) and rescued the created world that was consumed by the causal ocean, protecting the world by keeping it safely in his stomach when there is a deluge again, then spitting it out again, when people like mahAbali steals (claims) bhagavAn‘s wealth like an eagle plucking its prey, emperumAn rescues the world from him by measuring it up to the boundary. Oh one who is protecting in so many ways like this! [Here a question arises, is this not the karma which leads an AthmA into a particular birth? why are these actions highlighted as favours to the AthmA?] The karma of the chEthana is the viSEsha kAraNam (special cause) that leads to the variegated bodies one may acquire. yaugapadhyam anugraha kAryam [But, the whole universe(s) is created at once out of bhagavAn‘s mercy on seeing the plight of jIvAthmAs without any body/senses] – bhagavAn is thus the sAmAnya kAraNam (common cause) for whole of creation.
  • piRai ERu sadaiyAnum … – rudhra who is having matted hair in the form of doing penance, yet, having the [cool] crescent moon on his head and being the prime enjoyer; brahmA who is the father of such rudhra; indhra who is [having greatness to be] counted along with those two; by them glorifying you and you manifesting your distinct nature due to that, is there anything great for you? Like a person making a doll, decorating it to look great, keeping his feet on its head and pridefully claiming “it worshipped me”, like it is said in thiruvAimozhi 7.5.4 “nanmaip punal paNNi nAnmuganaip paNNi” (creating the good causal ocean and creating the brahmA), if brahmA who was created by you and these other dhEvathAs who are created by brahmA praise you and if you become proud about that, is there any greatness in it? would you not be a laughing-stock by doing this?

In the next article we will enjoy the next pAsuram.

adiyen sarathy ramanuja dasan

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rAmAnusa nURRanthAdhi – 32

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Introduction (given by maNavALa mAmunigaL)

When they saw amudhanAr become joyous saying ‘irAmAnusanaip porundhinamE’ in the previous pAsuram, they said, ‘when we also try to get this one (emperumAnAr), we realize that we are not having the noble qualities like you’; amudhanAr replies that for those who reach emperumAnAr, they would acquire such qualities naturally.

Introduction (given by piLLailOkam jIyar)

When they saw amudhanAr become joyous saying ‘irAmAnusanaip porundhinamE’ in the previous pAsuram, they said, ‘when we also try to get this one (emperumAnAr), we realize that we are not having the noble qualities like you’; amudhanAr replies that for those who reach emperumAnAr, they would acquire such qualities naturally.

porundhiya thEsum poRaiyum thiRalum pugazhum nalla
thirundhiya gyAnamum selvamum sErum seRu kaliyAl
varundhiya gyAlaththai vaNmaiyinAl vandheduththaLiththa
arundhavan engaL irAmAnusanai adaibavarkkE                         32


Word by word meaning (given by maNavALa mAmunigaL)

seRu – the prevailing
kaliyAl – defects of kali yugam [4th in the yuga cycle of sath, thrEthA, dhvApara and kali]; due to that,
varundhiya – being miserable
gyAlaththai – that is this earth;
without any prayer/request from our side,
vaNmaiyinAl vandhu  – (he) came just due to his generosity, and
eduththu – lifted the downtrodden
aLiththa – and protected us (from the samsAram)
arum – since he (emperumAnAr) is the head of prapannas,
as said in ‘thasmAnnyAsa mEshAmthapasAm athirikthamAhu:’, being very rare among the types of asceticisms (thapas), that is,
thavan – SaraNAgathy, he (emperumAnAr) having that asceticism (thapas)
engaL irAmAnusanai – that is emperumAnAr, who gave himself fully to us  (so ‘our’ emperumAnAr);
adaibavarkkufor those who reach him, (will be reached by)
porundhiya thEsum – splendor that is according to the true nature of beings (that is, being a devotee),  (which is made possible by)
poRaiyum – patience and calmness in the face of troubles and happiness, (which is made possible by)
thiRalum – control of senses which helps in winning others (for sampradhAyam)
pugazhum – by state of good virtues, fame,
nalla – having the knowledge of truth, ways, and goal, and due to understanding its true nature, it is being distinct,
thirundhiya gyAnamum – that is, the knowledge; knowledge which is gained by way of learning from and as per the words of the preceptors;
selvamum – wealth that is devotion, which is the result of such knowledge; like the SlOka ‘rathir mathi’, etc., where for those who get the glance of pirAtti that wealth would come by itself,  to them (who reached emperumAnAr) without asking for anything,
sErum – the aforementioned would come to them.


seRu kaliyAl varundhiya gyAlaththai (Here, a lot are quoted about how things would deteriorate in kali yugam; and how there would be suffering due to not gaining the true knowledge etc.) – in such ways the kali yugam that is prevailing; due to which it is miserable; that is, about the sentient who live in this world, the world that gives ill knowledge;

vaNmaiyinAl (vandhu) As said in ‘dhurlabhO mAnushO dhEhOdhEhinAm kshaNabhangura: | thathrApi dhurlabhammannyE vaikuNtapriya dharSanam ||’ (it is very rare to be born as a human being, even rarer to be born without blemishes in the body, and rarest is to be a prapannan wishing to reach SrIvaikuNtam), due to lack of true knowledge while we do not have any consideration/asking for it, he (emperumAnAr) came here by his magnanimity due to his intolerance when seeing the suffering of others; came from paramapadham as a krupAmAthra prasannAchArya; this is as said in ‘puNyAmbOjavikAsAya pApadhvAnthakshayAyacha | SrImAn AvirabhUthbhUmau rAmAnuja dhivAkara:’ (for the knowledge of jeevAthmAs to flourish, for the effects of our evil deeds to be destroyed, the one having the wealth of SrIvaishNavam, appeared in this world, that is the sun rAmAnujar). Like it is said in ‘veRidhE aruL seyvar [thiruvAimozhi – 8.7.8]’ (without any means from us, He would grace us happily), emperumAnAr divined his appearing here without any request/prayer from us.

emperumAnAr_avathAramDivine incarnation of emperumAnAr

eduththu aLiththaAs said in ‘sAkshAn nArAyaNO dhEva: kruthvAmarthyamayeem thanUm | magnAn udhdharathE lOkAn kAruNyAch chAsthra pANinA’ (~ like nArAyaNan himself, he himself took up a human body, to uplift those who are immersed born in this world, using the SAsthram in his hands, by his kindness), emperumAnAr incarnated without anyone asking, to uplift everyone from the immersion of worldly affairs, and gave knowledge, SrIvaikuNtam, etc., and so protected everyone;

aLiththa – thirukkOshtiyUr nambi after putting emperumAnAr through many conditions, gave the meanings of charama SlOkam, which emperumAnAr gave to everyone interested; and in the presence of SrIranga nAchchiyAr, he performed prapaththi to azhagiya maNavALan emperumAn (for us), and in such ways emperumAnAr protected everyone, is well known.

arum thavan(emperumAnAr having strength of thapas which is..)  as said in ‘thasmAn nyAsamEshAm thapasAm athirikthamAhu:’ (~ the best of thapas is nyAsam (SaraNAgathy)); and as said in ‘sath karma nirathASSudhdhAssAmkya  yOgavithasthadhA | nArhanthi charaNasthasya kalAmkOtithameemapi | yadhyEna kAma kAmEna nasAdhyam sAdhanAntharai: | mumukshUNayayath sAkyairnayOgEna cha bhakthidha: || thEnathEnabhyathE thath thath nyAsEnaiva mAhAmunE’ (~ Those who do their karmas with faith, having clean thought, speech, and actions,  those who are in the path of knowledge about AthmA – even such people are not able to easily reach the divine feet of emperumAn; they think that what we wish for is not going to be reached; they do SaraNAgathi to be able to reach emperumAn), SaraNAgathi is the best among thapas, and it is hard to do for those who are used to doing something with their own efforts as the means, and ‘prapathEranyan namE kalpakOti sahasrENApi sAdhanamstheethimanvAna: [gadhya thrayam]’ (even if several thousands of years go, I would only resort to prapaththi) by which he  (emperumAnAr) ascertained about it; he having such thapas in the form of SaraNAgathi;

engaLour svAmi; he who gave himself fully to us; protecting of the world was just a front, his intention to come here is to take and give himself to us!

Or, emperumAn saying ‘vinASAyachadhuskruthAm’ in plural and decimated many enemies, but in every incarnation it is the hiraNyan, kamsan, etc., who were the main ones to be killed; likewise, even though emperumAnAr incarnated to uplift everyone in the world, amudhanAr’s thinking is that he incarnated for uplifting him only;

adaibavarkkEto those who surrendered to

irAmAnusanai –  such emperumAnAr, (through pancha samskAram); it is as said in ‘kshEmassa Eva hi yatheendhra bhavachchrithAnAm [yathirAja vimSathi – 18] (prosperity is the reaching of emperumAnAr’s divine feet),

(after surrendering to emperumAnAr, following will come to them)

porundhiya thEsum – smartness as per the true nature, by which to win over others;

emperumAnAr won over by way of debates etc., the mAyAvAdhis at sarasvathee bhaNdAram, the bhauththas at thirunArAyaNapuram,  yAdhava prakAsan, yagya mUrththy and similar others; our smartness would be similar to that.

porundhiyawould reach us; that would be as in line with our true nature;

poRaiyumhow much ever sorrows or happiness come our way, we won’t sulk or rejoice;  as said in ‘vipadhi dhairyam athAbhudhayE kshamA’ (boldness during times of danger, is the character of bearing/patience), such character;

thiRalum – in the matters related to emperumAn, devotees, and AchAryas, as said in ‘aham sarvam karishyAmi’ (I shall do all kinds of services), having the mental strength to do and complete all sorts of services to them;

pugazhum – qualities of controlling inner and outer senses; (due to such qualities), reputation/fame in all directions;

nalla thirundhiya gyAnamum

gyAnam’ is present in all sentient, which is the knowledge of what is good and bad in this and the other world, and what would give those things;  on the other hand,  

‘nalla gyAnam’ is surrendering to AchAryan, by staying in guru’s place, doing all kinds of services to him to make the AchAryan happy, and getting the inner knowledge about truth, ways, and goals (that is, doing service to devotees is the goal);

‘thirundhiya’ gyAnam – as said in ‘thadh vidhdhi praNipAthEna pari praSNEna sEvayA, upadhEkshanthi thE gyAnam gyAninas thathva dharSina: [SrI bhagavath gIthA]’  (~submissively approach an AchArya, and render service to him with humility and ask him questions submissively; the AchArya will teach that knowledge as he has understood the real truth (that is bhagavAn)), and ‘maithrEya: paripaprachha praNipadhyAbhivAdhyacha’ (~ maithrEyar keeps being around the guru and repeatedly asks for clarifications and gains knowledge), and ‘Etha gyAnamithi prOktham’, and ‘seyal nanRAgath thiruththip paNi koLvAn [kaNNinuN chiruththAmbu – 10]’ (by his (nammAzhvAr‘s) deeds he reformed through strong instructions and engaged them in service),

by the blessing of AchAryan by whose instructions and corrections we get the true and clarified knowledge (in alignment with the teachings of the preceptors);

selvamum – as said in ‘sAhi Sreer amruthAsathAm’, that is the wealth of brahma gyAnam (knowing of emperumAn), and the wealth of kainkaryam as said in ‘lakshmaNO lakshmi sampanna:’ (iLaiyAzhvAr who got the wealth (of kainkaryam); and as said in ‘nalla padhaththAl mania vAzhvar koNda peNdir makkaL [thiruvAimozhi – 8.10.11](~ with the family as a family would get to live with the greatness including subservience to Him), the wealth here that is suitable for doing services here;

Thus, all the above will come competing with each other and reach (those who surrender their every thing to emperumAnAr).

From AzhwAr thirunagari SrI U.Ve. vidhwAn thirumalai nallAn chakravarththi rAmakrishNa iyengAr’s ‘amudha virundhu’:

thiral -> poRai -> porundhia thEsuHaving the smartness to control the senses gives rise to mind that is neutral to sorrows and happiness, which leads to suitable smartness;

selvamum sErum –  Devotion that is the result of true knowledge, is said as the wealth. poigai AzhvAr too said, ‘dhanamAya thAnE kai kUdum [mudhal thiruvanthAdhi -43]’ (~ such wealth would be in reach automatically).

One does not have to search for the qualities; for those who have surrendered to emperumAnAr those things would be in reach automatically.

gyAlaththai vandhu eduththu aLiththaOther incarnations (emperumAn’s) had to be prayed and begged for by the dhEvas, but emperumAnAr’s incarnation here happened due to his kindness and he did not expect any act on our part; other AchAryas uplift us by giving their hand that is true knowledge.

– – – – –

Translation: raghurAm SrInivAsa dasan

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