iraNdAm thiruvandhAdhi – 3 – parisu naRumalarAl

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In the previous pAsuram, AzhwAr said “vAnaththaNiyamarar Akkuvikkum” (samsAris would be made equivalent to nithyasUris). In this pAsuram, he is amazed that samsAris of this world, using the flowers available in this world and worshipping his divine feet here, would reach the SrIvaikuNtam of emperumAn, who is the Lord of the indefatigable nithyasUris. We can construe this as either AzhwAr is speaking with involvement about the activity that emperumAn is going to undertake for his followers or as AzhwAr is speaking about emperumAn’s followers reaching paramapadham even as emperumAn is waiting for his followers here.

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

parisu naRumalarAl pARkadalAn pAdham
purivAr pugappeRuvar pOlAm purivArgaL
thollamar kELvith thulangoLisEr thORRaththu
nallamarar kOmAn nagar

Word by Word Meanings

pARkadalAn pAdham – the divine feet of emperumAn who is reclining in the milky ocean
naRu malaral – with fragrant flowers
parisu purivAr – those who worship him willingly through the means of devotion
purivArgaL thol amarar – the ancient dhEvas (such as brahmA et al) who are sAdhanAnushtAna parar (those who are trying to reach emperumAn through their own efforts)
kELvi – that which can only be heard of (and not be seen)
thulangu oLi sEr thORRaththu – with resplendent radiance
nal amarar kOman nagar – paramapadham which is the huge city of the head of nithyasUris
pugap peRuvar pOlAm – they will attain, it seems!


naRu malarAl – with beautiful, fragrant flowers.

pARkadalAn pAdham – Isn’t it to enable people like us who can go and worship his divine feet that emperumAn is reclining in a simple manner at thiruppARkadal (milky ocean) which is the origin for all the incarnations of emperumAn! Among the four forms of emperumAn viz.  vAsudhEvan, sankarshaNan, pradhyumnan and anirudhdhan, he is reclining in thiruppARkadal as the junior-most, anirudhdhan. The divine feet of such emperumAn who is reclining in thiruppARkadal, who is constantly engaged in reaching samsAris to the other shore, paramapadham.

parisu purivAr – those who are trying to attain emperumAn as per the way showed by SAsthras (sacred texts) – viz. those who are trying to attain emperumAn through the path of bhakthi (devotion)

pugappeRuvar pOlAm – it appears that such people will attain him! There is no fault in the means to attain him. Only those who do not attain him will be the losers.

pugappeRuvar pOlAmAzhwAr is mentioning, in such a way as to show his displeasure that he is yet to attain paramapadham, of those who would attain paramapadham.

Why is emperumAn taking those who attain him, to paramapadham? Is it that he doesn’t have anyone who is attaining him? No, there are many dhEvas (celestial entities) who are trying to attain him. Who are these dhEvas?

purivArgaL thol amarar – those who are trying to attain emperumAn through their own efforts. The old dhEvas such as brahmA et al, who are reciting his divine names, carrying out penance and growing matted hair.

thol amarar – very old dhEvas. Those who are older than us by a few days.

kELvi – even such dhEvas would have only heard of emperumAn’s dwelling place of SrIvaikuNtam and would not have seen it. SrIvishNu purANam 1-9-55 says “yam na dhEvA munaya: nachAham na cha Sankara: jAnanthi paramESasya thadh vishNO: paramam padham” (brahmA says that “that is the supreme dwelling place of paramESvara vishNu (supreme Lord) which dhEvas, rishis (sages), Sankara and I have not been able to know a little bit about”).

thuLangu oLi sEr thORRaththu – mahAbhAratham AraNya parvam 136-18 says “athyarkkAnala dhIptham thath sthAnam” (that paramapadham is brighter than sun and fire). That paramapadham appears as such an immeasurable bright place. SvEthAsvathara upanishath 3-8 says “Adhithya varNam thamasa: parasthAth” (having the brightness of sun, located beyond the world of thamas (total darkness or ignorance)). nAchchiyAr thirumozhi 10-2 says “mElthOnRum sOdhi vEdha mudhalvar” (the supreme being who is referred to by vEdhas (sacred texts) who dwells in that place which is beyond all the other places). This is how paramapadham has been referred to [in a few examples].

nal amarar kOmAn nagar – the dwelling place of the Lord of nithyasUris such as periya thiruvadi (garudan), thiruvananthAzhwAn (AdhiSEshan) who are the naturally residing, permanent dwellers there unlike mukthars who have stayed in samsAram for some time and then due to the grace of emperumAn sever their connection with samsAram and reach there in their own order.

nal amarar kOmAn – the charateristic of emperumAn is that he is the Lord of those nithyasUris who enjoy their goal and who cannot sustain themselves if they are separated from emperumAn, unlike dhEvas who observe certain means on their own for some time. parapapadham is the dwelling place for nithyasUris who give emperumAn his characteristic quality. Instead of saying that brahmam (supreme being) does not have any significant quality, it says that there is a divine abode for him and both he and the divine entities [nithyasUris] reside there! It appears that those who carry out bhakthi at the divine feet of emperumAn with fragrant flowers would enter such paramapadham! AzhwAr says that such people will initially worship archAvathAra emperumAn (dwelling in idol form in various divine abodes in samsAram), then worship him in vibhavam (various incarnations), then vyUham (at thiruppARkadal) and finally in paramapadham (SrIvaikuNtam). It appears that saying like this is not typical of AzhwArs and they are saying this as per their engagement. It is said that if one worships the junior most form, anirudhdha in thiruppARkadal, he would certainly attain paramapadham! Hence, it is certain that if one were to worship at the divine feet of emperumAn in any one place, he is bound to get the goal [of reaching paramapadham].

Let us move on to the 4th pAsuram next.

adiyEn krishNa ramanuja dhAsan

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