SrI: SrImathE SatakOpAya nama: SrImathE rAmAnujAya nama: SrImath varavaramunayE nama:
Highlights from thirukkurukaip pirAn piLLAn‘s introduction
seyya thAmaraik kaNNan – AzhwAr considering “pidhaRRumin pEdhaimai thIrndhu” – mercifully instructs about emperumAn’s ultimate manifestation of simplicity, as said previously “you surrender unto emperumAn“, to those who were highlighted before.
Highlights from nanjIyar‘s introduction
In sixth decad – AzhwAr, after mercifully seeing “Though emperumAn can be pleased by serving him, chEthanar being averse to him and being stubborn, is due to their lack of knowledge on him”, based on his own personal experience, repeating his wealth, simplicity etc which AzhwAr spoke from the first decad up till now, explaining his ultimate simplicity which is going up to archAvathAram [deity form in temples, mutts, homes etc] which makes his simplicity explained in “paththudai adiyavar” [his incarnations, mainly krishNAvathAram where he made himself available fully at the disposal of cowherd men and women] as supreme in paramapadham, and tells “you take shelter of him”. Why is archAvathAram easier to approach in comparison to “paththudai adiyavar” [his incarnations]? That is because of archAvathAra emperumAn :
- being present at all times to be enjoyed [unlike vibhava avathArams present only in specific times]
- accepting with great desire, the divine form made of any raw material which was desired to be his devotees
- being present to be enjoyed by everyone, and having all his activities such as eating, conversing, sleeping etc at the total disposal of his devotees
- who is SrIya:pathi (SrIman nArAyaNan) having these aspects as very natural instead of driven by any specific reason.
Highlights from vAdhi kEsari azhagiya maNavALa jIyar‘s introduction
In sixth decad – AzhwAr having previously mercifully explained emotional and affectionate reaction as a desirable aspect, thinking to explain the lord’s simplicity as seen in archAvathAram, to highlight the lord’s supremacy to the samsAris [materialistic persons] who don’t have such interest, highlights the following aspects:
- being the creator of the universe, which is the root cause of such saulabhyam (simplicity)
- his incarnations which are meant to protect/sustain the created universe
- the amazing/wonderful activities of such incarnations
- his great qualities which make him the refuge for even those who consider themselves to be supreme
- his dominance of being the lord of all wealth, even during his incarnations
- his extreme affection towards his devotees
- his unsurpassed sweetness
- his partiality of not abandoning his devotees
- being all types of relatives, and being totally subservient towards his devotees, in his archAvathAram
- the great love which occurred in AzhwAr himself towards such emperumAn who is subservient towards his devotees
Mercifully explaining these aspects, AzhwAr explains servitude towards bhagavAn in great detail.
Highlights from periyavAchchAn piLLai‘s introduction
See nampiLLai‘s introduction.
Highlights from nampiLLai‘s introduction
In previous decad, while sarvESvaran can bestow kainkaryam to those who have taste towards his lotus feet, such servitude being enjoyable by him, due to that (being enjoyable by emperumAn), it is desirable for chEthana (AthmA – Soul) to engage in that; but since some people lost it, AzhwAr condemned them; he gathered those who were interested in it [in his side] and disregarded those who were not interested; but then as said in “should one person beat another person with stick, when the other person is already falling down?”, and thinks “Since time immemorial, due to ignorance, they become astray; we cannot abandon them; let us give them some good advice” and advises them.
When rAvaNa uttered inappropriate words in front of pirAtti (sIthA) without realising that she is the mother [of all], she became distressed thinking “alas! why is he having such thoughts? there is no one to give him good advice”, and advised him as in SrI rAmAyaNam sundhara kANdam 21.19 “mithramaupayikam karthum” (you be friendly with SrI rAma). As pirAtti first condemned rAvaNa as in SrI rAmAyaNam sundhara kANdam 22.16 “… thvam nIchaSaSavath …” (you are like a lowly rabbit [when compared to an elephant like SrI rAma]) and then gave him good advice in “mithramaupayikam karthum“, AzhwAr too first condemned the samsAris and then gave them good advice.
[nampiLLai goes on to explain this SrI rAmAyaNam sundhara kANdam 21.19 elaborately.]
- mithramaupayikam karthum rAma: – When told “you surrender unto perumAL (SrI rAma)”, that lowly rAvaNa would consider that as an insult. So she says “seek SrI rAma’s friendship”. They [perumAL and pirAtti] are of the nature that they consider those who surrender unto them to be their equal. Their nature is such that, perumAL said in SrI rAmAyaNam yudhdha kANdam 18.3 “mithrabhAvEna …” (even if they pretend to be friends, I will protect them) and pirAtti said in this SlOkam “mithramaupayikam karthum” (seek his friendship) [such like-mindedness between perumAL and pirAtti].
- sthAnam parIpsathA – Even if you want a place to live, you need to surrender unto him.
Did you think that it is better to be killed rather than being subservient to SrI rAma?
- vadhanchAnichchathA gOram – Will he let you die easily? He will keep you alive, kill all your children and finally will torture you to death; if you want to avert such disaster, then you take his shelter.
- thvayA – Due to your current [pathetic] state, you have to do this.
- asau – Due to constant remembrance, she is saying “this” [as if SrI rAma is in front of him]; for rAvaNa too, due to the fear in seeing [the valiant] SrI rAma chasing the deer [mArIcha in the form of a deer], he is always remembering SrI rAma [as if seeing in front of him all the time].
- purusha rishabha: – Don’t doubt “would he accept me for the offense I have committed?”. He is purushOththama (best among men, supreme lord), he will not consider your mistake as a big fault.
This SlOkam should be read as “asau-purusharishaba:-rAma:-thvayA-mithram karthum aupayikam” (This best among men, SrI rAma. You (rAvaNa), seek out his friendship). As pirAtti mercifully advised rAvaNa, AzhwAr gives good advice to samsAris. AzhwAr wondered “While the eligibility is there [for all jIvAthmAs to serve bhagavAn], why are they going astray?”. He realizes that it is due to lack of knowledge about bhagavAn’s qualities and his simplicity. The samsAris think “ISwaran is great, he is like a tall stick (which cannot be easily reached), we cannot attain him” and retract. AzhwAr thinks to advice them about his saulabhyam (simplicity) and tells them “Don’t think that ‘He is big’ and retract; he is very easily approachable for his devotees; you approach him”. Starting from “paththudai adiyavar“, AzhwAr is explaining his simplicity only. What is new here? The simplicity which is explained thus far is like supremacy when compared to his ultimate simplicity which is seen in archAvathAram – AzhwAr is mercifully explaining that now.
[nampiLLai beautifully explains bhattar‘s SrIrangarAja sthavam uththara Sathakam 74th SlOkam “AsthAm thE” here].
- archya: – One who is worshippable even by samsAris.
If they are samsAris, would not be simply committing offenses while worshipping?
- sarva sahishNu: – He will remain tolerating all such offenses.
But, would he not have any second thought?
- archaka parAdhIna akilAthma sthithi: – He will align his thoughts towards theirs considering “Only if I have a thought and they have a different thought, there will be no match”. mudhal thiruvanthAdhi 44 “thamar ugandhadhevvuruvam avvuruvam thAnE” (whatever forms his devotees like, he assumes such forms). SrI bhagavath gIthA 4.11 “yE yathA mAm prapadhyanthE” – whichever individuals pray to me to assume any forms, I will present to them in such forms to be pursued by them; mama varthmAnuvarthanthE … – since I accept their desire as mine, all of them live by enjoying me. SrI vishNu purANam 5.17 “smrutham sankalpanAmayam” (vishNu who is considered based on one’s desires/will). In paramapadham, emperumAn remains with distinguished form and qualities; in vibhava incarnations (like mathsya, kUrma … SrI rAma, krishNa et al), he will bring in such divinity and qualities into the species in which he is born; unlike these, when a devotee consecrates a deity out of any raw material that is pleasing to him (the devotee), emperumAn assumes that as his divine form, and will be present in that deity as he is present in his distinguished form in paramapadham – such is emperumAn’s favour towards everyone in this archAvathAram. Further, emperumAn who controls the nature, sustenance, actions and inaction of all other entities which are distinct from him, keeps his nature, sustenance etc available at the disposal of his devotees and stays there to be divided [even among the devotees] like their houses, land etc [if a father has two sons, they will divide the properties; similarly if there are few deities at home, the two sons may also divide the deities among them – emperumAn makes himself available like that out of ultimate saulabhyam]. archAvathAram is where he makes himself available in such a manner that:
- whenever there is inclination to serve in his devotee, emperumAn makes himself available [at his home etc] so that he need not go elsewhere to serve him;
- he can perform the kainkaryams (services) that he would do after giving up the material body and reaching the spiritual abode (paramapadham) with a spiritual body, he can perform the same services with this same body (which stimulates one into worldly pleasures);
- even if the devotee is engaged in other activities, emperumAn would still wait for him to care for him [as being in deity form, he vowed not to fend for himself].
- when the devotee feels hungry, if he prepares some food and offers it to emperumAn, accepting it without hesitation;
- having all his seat, rest, ornaments etc at the disposal of his devotee;
- though he is Sriya:pathi (lord of SrI mahAlakshmi), having no unfulfilled desires, being subservient to his devotee, accepting whatever offered to him by his devotee and considering them with great attachment to be like the butter which was offered by yaSOdhA et al.
In this decad, AzhwAr explains his auspicious qualities such as parathvam (his supremacy), qualities in his incarnations and finally explains his ultimate simplicity in archAvathAram. If AzhwAr is focussed on explaining saulabhyam (simplicity), why should he start with the qualities such as supremacy? “One who has supremacy, reduced his stature” is an appreciable quality. When someone who is inferior is in a lowly stature, there is nothing unnatural about it; the sequence is explained to establish that the one who is in this very simple state is the same one who has the [ultimate] greatness. As prapaththi (surrender) [is considered as ultimate] in upAyams (means), archAvathAra saulabhyam (simplicity in deity form) [is considered as ultimate] in his simplicity. [Would some one have great respect, admiration and love towards emperumAn‘s archA form even though it was desired/consecrated by himself?] Though mother is also a woman [all women to be considered as mothers generally], since her favours are personally observed and SAsthram too instructs us, one treats [own] mother with great honour and respect; similarly, for the faithful one, AzhwAr explains the ultimate simplicity of archAvathAram and shows that it is the best refuge for the devotee [and thus one will develop great respect, admiration and love towards emperumAn’s archA form].
Each pAsuram is discussed subsequently.
- pAsuram 1
- pAsuram 2
- pAsuram 3
- pAsuram 4
- pAsuram 5
- pAsuram 6
- pAsuram 7
- pAsuram 8
- pAsuram 9
- pAsuram 10
- pAsuram 11
adiyen sarathy ramanuja dasan
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