Monthly Archives: January 2018

iraNdAm thiruvandhAdhi – 68 – vali mikka

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avathArikai

AzhwAr says that emperumAn is such that if someone comes to pray to him asking for other benefits instead of himself, he cannot keep quiet; even if he has to strain himself, he will carry out tasks for his followers. Instead of getting rid of the scent of samsAram from them with the help of such an entity, the celestial people (dhEvas) obtained nectar, which is like salt water, from him. Thus he speaks about the activities of emperumAn by which he grants what each person wants from that persons’ position and how he avoids giving what is not required. AzhwAr says that people lose him on their own [by not asking for him] and that there is no shortcoming in emperumAn.

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

vali mikka vAL eyiRRu vALavuNar mALa
vali mikka vAL varai maththAga valimikka
vANAgam suRRi maRugak kadal kadaindhAn
kONAgam kombu osiththa kO

Word by Word Meaning

vali mikka – being mightily strong
vAL eyiRu – having canine teeth resembling swords
vAL – having an army of swords
avuNar – demons
mALa – to be destroyed
vali mikka vAL varai maththAga – having manthara mountain, which is very strong and radiant, as the churning staff
vali mikka vAL nAgam – the serpent vAsuki, which is very strong and radiant
suRRi – using it as a rope around the churning staff
kadal maRuga kadaindhAn – one who churned the ocean such that it became a slimey mass

Who is that?
kOL nAgam – the exulting elephant called as kuvalayApIdam, which is very strong
kombu – its tusks
osiththa – one who broke it (playfully)
kO – the Lord

vyAkyAnam

vali mikka vAL avuNar mALa – making the demons, who are strong, who have radiant canine teeth and who have weapons, to get destroyed. In other worlds, emperumAn made the strength of demons to get destroyed and that of dhEvas (celestial entities) to grow.

vali mikka vAL varai maththAga – when the omnipotent emperumAn himself churned the ocean, he used the manthara mountain which is very strong and which would not decay under the impact, and which is radiant. He made it very strong to use it as churning staff.

vali mikka vAL nAgam suRRi – when he used manthara mountain as a churning staff, he used the serpent vAsuki  as the rope for coiling around the staff since vAsuki would not rupture during the churning process, being very strong and was as radiant as the mountain. In order to ensure that vAsuki would not tear off during the churning process, emperumAn gave it additional strength.

maRugak kadal kadaindhAn – he churned the ocean such that the bottom layers of the ocean came on top. The ocean was agitated like curd is agitated in a vessel and suffered the same pain that the curd in the small vessel suffered.

Who churned the ocean like that?

kOL nAgam kombu osiththa kO – one who is like an anchor for all of us. emperumAn is the leader who broke the tusks of the elephant kuvalayApIdam [the royal elephant of King kamsan] which came to harm him. He got rid of his enemy and made us as his servitors through the exhibition of such valour. After destroying his enemy and protecting himself, emperumAn offered himself as the leader of the world. Through this act, he made us all as his servitors. Did not such an emperumAn churn the ocean during that time, in the bargain suffering pain in his divine form!

We shall move on to the 69th pAsuram next.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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thiruvAimozhi – 6.4.2 – kEyath thInguzhal

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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 the second pAsuram, AzhwAr says “Is there anyone who is comparable to me in thirunAdu (paramapadham)?” since his desire was fulfilled as he prayed in thriuvAimozhi 5.9.10thollaruL nal vinaiyAl solak kUdungol” (Will we be able to praise him by his virtuous deeds out of his mercy?).

Highlights from vAdhi kEsari azhagiya maNavALa jIyar‘s introduction

Subsequently, AzhwAr says “My time is spent in lovingly meditating upon the heart-melting activities of krishNa who is having an amazing form; are the residents of distinguished paramapadham, where there is constant enjoyment of bhagavAn, a match to me?”.

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.

pAsuram

kEyath thInguzhal UdhiRRum nirai mEyththadhum keNdai oN kaN
vAsap pUnguzhal pinnai thOLgaL maNandhadhum maRRum pala
mAyak kOlap pirAn than seygai ninaindhu mananguzhaindhu
nEyaththOdu kazhindha pOdhu enakku evvulagam nigarE?

Listen

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

(To capture the hearts of the cowherd girls)
kEyam – using songs (which appear humble)
thIm – to be sweet
kuzhal – flute
UdhiRRum – played

(playing the flute to attract the cowherd girls and cows)
nirai – cattle
mEyththadhum – herded
keNdai – like keNdai [a dark coloured fish]
oN – youthful/tender
kuzhal – having divine lock (hair on the head)
pinnai thOLgaL – with the divine shoulders of nappinnaip pirAtti
maNandhadhum – embraced
maRRum – further
pala – many pleasant aspects
mAyam kOlam – having amazing form
pirAn than – krishNa’s
seygai – eternally enjoyable activities
ninaindhu – thinking
manam – heart
kuzhaindhu – having melted
nEyaththOdu – with love
pOdhu – time
kazhindhu – spent;
enakku – for me
e – which
ulagam – world
oppu – match?

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

kaNNan emperumAn played sweet songs with his flute; he herded the cattle; he embraced the divine shoulders of nappinnaip pirAtti who is having divine lock which resembles youthful/tender keNdai fish; thinking about the eternally enjoyable activities of krishNa who is having an amazing form and many such enjoyable aspects, having a melted heart, I spent my time with love towards him; for me [who is having such experiences], which world will be a match? Implies that even paramapadham is not a match. [Note; kaN (eyes) and vAsam (fragrance) are missing in the word-by-word translation].

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

  • kEyath thIm kuzhal UdhiRRum – kEyam (gEyam) – song; thIm – sweetness; sweet songs. He would play songs in the flute which rhyme with the names of the cowherd girls he desires to invite.
  • nirai mEyththadhum – He uses the same tool (flute music) to invite the cowherd girls and to herd the cows; as he plays his flute, the cows will feel their hunger is satisfied. Just as chakravarthith thirumagan (SrI rAma, son of dhaSaratha chakravarthi) had mastered the bow in his hand, krishNa has mastered the flute.
  • keNdai … –  sIthAp pirAtti embraced SrI rAma to heal his wounds after he defeated kara, as said in SrI rAmAyaNam AraNya kANdam 30.39 and 30.40  “bharthAram parishasvajE“ (embraced her husband); similarly here nappinnaip pirAtti glanced at him with her beautiful eyes to relieve him of the fatigue of herding cows, adding fragrance to his divine form with the fragrance from her divine lock and embraced him.
  • keNdai oN kaN – Cool glance of her very youthful/tender eyes like keNdai [fish], which feels like flow of nectar.
  • vAsap pUm kuzhal – One who has specially great lock which is even greater than what is explained in thiruvAimozhi 10.10.2 “... vAsam sey pUm kuzhalAL” (SrI mahAlakshmi who has fragrant lock and who resides in the chest of emperumAn).
  • pinnai thOLgaL maNandhadhum – The manner in which emperumAn embraced her shoulders. She is known as “thOLi“, one who has overwhelmingly beautiful shoulders.
  • maRRum pala – The manner in which he embraced his other consorts. Just as chakravarathith thirumagan (SrI rAma) has adhyayanam (education), AchArya sEvai (serving the preceptors), asthra Sasthra abhyAsa (learning weaponry and military science) , krishNa is always engaged in enjoying his consorts and cowherd girls.
  • mAyak kOlap pirAn – The amazing decoration of the benefactor who is anointed with the turmeric paste which was passed on from nappinnaip pirAtti’s divine body when he embraced her.
  • mAyak kOlap pirAn – It can also imply his beautiful posture of being anointed with the turmeric paste and sandalwood paste from the bosoms of his other consorts who are explained in nAchchiyAr thirumozhi 10.8.7 “kongai mEl kungumaththin kuzhambazhiyap pugundhu orunAL thangumEl ennAvi thangum” (I will sustain myself the day on which he comes and embraces me [so tightly] to erase the vermillion paste on my bosoms).
  • than seygai ninaindhu manam kuzhaindhu nEyaththOdu kazhindha pOdhu – As I start thinking about his activities, my heart will start melting uncontrollably. The state of AzhwArs is as said in thiruvAimozhi 9.6.2 “ninai thoRum sollum thoRum nenjidindhugum” (my thoughts, words and mind will tremble).
  • nEyaththOdu kazhindhapOdhu – When the time was spent in a sweet manner due to the sweetness of the one who was thought about.
  • enakku evvulagam nigarE – Is there anyone comparable to me even in a dhESa viSEsham (paramapadham, the divine abode)? Who is a match for me who has sweet bliss during the time of meditation itself as it happens during the actual experience? Are those residents of the spiritual sky a match for me? Since ulagam (lOkam) indicates the noble personalities of the world, here it indicates “nithyasUris”.

In the next article we will enjoy the next pAsuram.

adiyen sarathy ramanuja dasan

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iraNdAm thiruvandhAdhi – 67 – kaNdEn thirumEni

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avathArikai

Once AzhwAr told his divine mind “Please see”, emperumAn showed himself to AzhwAr causelessly. AzhwAr mercifully tells about the known entities among those that he saw.

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

kaNdEn thirumEni yAn kanavil Angu avankaik
kaNdEn kanalum sudar Azhi kaNdEn
uRunOy vinai iraNdum Ottuviththup pinnum
maRu nOy seRuvAn vali

Word by Word Meaning

yAn – adiyEn (the servitor)
kanavil – in the experience of the mind, similar to dream
thirumEni – the beautiful divine form
kaNdEn – worshipped
Angu – at that time
avan kai – in his divine hand
kanalum sudar Azhi kaNdEn – I saw the divine, radiant disc, which was spitting fire
uRunOy vinai iraNdum – the two deeds of vice and virtue, which are like a disease, fully united (with AthmA)
Ottuviththu – getting rid
pinnum – beyond that
maRu nOy seRuvAn – emperumAn who gets rid of even the scent of these deeds which spring up like off-shoots
vali – strength
kaNdEn – I was able to see

vyAkyAnam

kaNdEn thirumEni – I had the fortune to see the divine form of emperumAn. According to AzhwArs, enjoying the qualities of emperumAn is something that comes on its own. But enjoying his divine form is very important.

yAn kanavil – instead of seeing him through the sensory perceptions I saw him through my heart without any interruption. Instead of seeing him through my eyes which is a manifestation of the knowledge of AthmA and which is part of the exterior sensory perceptions, I saw him through my mind, as if seeing in the dream. As mentioned in manusmruthi 12-122 says “svapna dhI gamyam” (he is to be perceived through the experience of mind, like a dream), I saw him beautifully through my heart, like a dream. It is opined here that since he was able to see him [emperumAn] extensively and since he was great, AzhwAr could not extricate himself from that vision.

Angu avan kai – in the divine hands of an entity who had such a beauty

kaNdEn kanalum sudarAzhi – I saw the divine disc which comes fiercely at the enemies, without any interruption.

kaNdEn uRu nOy iraNdum Ottuviththu pinnum maRu nOy seRuvAn vali – I saw him [emperumAn] who gets rid of pApa (vice) and puNya (virtue) which are stuck to the ever-lasting AthmA and who has the ability to prevent them from coming back again. maRu nOy refers to the traces of one’s deeds which would return to the AthmA.

vali kaNdEn – being a chEthana (sentient entity) the only requirement for him is to know the nature of AthmA which is afraid, on thinking of samsAram and which loses that fear, on thinking of emperumAn.

We shall consider the 68th pAsuram next.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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iraNdAm thiruvandhAdhi – 66 – idhu kaNdAy

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avathArikai

AzhwAr says that the benefit obtained out of engaging with matters relating to emperumAn is great. But it is essential not to have desire with worldly pursuits, thinking of the ruins that one would end up with such acts. He says that the reason for attaining emperumAn and for removing of hurdles in this path is not worshipping emperumAn but the ability to see the faults in worldly pleasures.

Let us look at the pAsuram and its meanings:

idhu kaNdAy nannenjE ippiRaviyAvadhu
idhu kaNdAy ellAm nAmuRRadhu idhu kaNdAy
nAraNan pEr Odhi naragaththarugaNaiyA
kAraNamum vallaiyE kAN

Word by Word Meaning

nal nenjE – Oh good heart!
ip piRavi Avadhu idhu kaNdAy – the cruelty of samsAram (materialistic realm) is like this, do observe.
nAm uRRadhu ellAm idhu kaNdAy – the sorrows that we experienced (in this samsAram) are like these.
nAraNan – SrIman nArAyana’s
pEr – divine names
Odhi – reciting them well
naragaththu – the hell called samsAram
arugu – near
aNaiyA kAraNamum – the reason for hating that we should not be here
idhu kaNdAy – is only the fault of this samsAram, do observe.

(for me, not having to tell each and everything like this)
vallaiyEL – if you are capable of knowing
kAN – see for yourself (the lowliness of this samsAram).

vyAkyAnam

nal nenjE – Oh heart who agrees with me when I say that life in this world is terrible!

idhu kaNdAy ippiRaviyAvadhu – The nature of this samsAram (materialistic realm) is not what we had thought of, earlier. It is that which has been shown to us by emperumAn. Life on earth is the epitome of sorrow. All that we had thought of life on this earth as something great is mere delusion. Even faults in this life will appear to our eyes as faults, only with the grace of emperumAn. Otherwise, they will appear to be without faults. Just as we cannot see emperumAn unless he reveals himself to us, we cannot see the faults too in life unless he reveals them to us.

idhu ellAm nAm uRRadhu – just as there is only happiness in enjoying emperumAn, there is only sorrow in life. Hasn’t this (samsAram) given to us only sorrow, in the garb of pleasure, for a very long time! Just as there is only happiness in paramapadham (SrIvaikuNtam) with emperumAn’s grace, there is only sorrow in samsAram. Has not ALavandhAr mercifully mentioned in sthOthra rathnam 25abhUthapUrvam mama bhAvi kim vA sarvam sahE mE sahajam hi dhu:kam” (there is no sorrow that I have not experienced. I am tolerating all the sorrows. Isn’t sorrow born with me)! It appears that sorrows will be there as long as AthmA is there [in this samsAram]. Even though this AthmA belongs to emperumAn, have you [referring to his heart] not seen all the sorrows that we experienced!

idhu kaNdAy nAraNan pEr Odhi naragaththu arugu aNaiyAk kAraNamum – The reason for reciting the divine names of the apt Lord emperumAn and for not going towards naragam (hell) is only seeing (knowing) the faults in the worldly life that I had mentioned earlier [says the AzhwAr to his heart]. Just as emperumAn enables us to attain him and relieves us from worldly pursuits, seeing the faults in worldly pursuits will enable us to relieve ourselves from these and to hold on to emperumAn.

vallaiyEl kAN – Some people will lose their belongings even when they are awake. In the same way, even while we know about worldly pursuits, their faults will not dawn in our hearts. Hence, even you have to suffer, see clearly the nature of the worldly pursuits. Even as we are experiencing the sorrows, isn’t our sin the reason for not moving away from the worldly life!  In this matter, doesn’t even seeing with our eyes become useless! Just as we desire if we see something good, should we not become averse if we see something bad? The opinion here is that since attaining emperumAn is not due to our efforts and since the involvement in worldly pursuits is our desire, what is needed for the jIvAthmAs is to see the faults in the worldly pursuits. Doesn’t SrI vishNu purANam 6-7-28 say “mana Eva manushyANAm kAraNam bandha mOkshayO!” (it is the person’s mind which is responsible for both bondage and liberation). When the chEthana (sentient entity) gets involved in unnecessary pursuits, emperumAn, who helps in attaining the necessary entity and avoiding the unnecessary, prevents the chEthana from involving in the unnecessary and gives what he really needs. nammAzhwAr initially saw emperumAn as the head of nithyasUris (imaiyOr thalaivan). This AzhwAr says that he should help in releasing us from falsified knowledge, bad conduct and impure body, all of which are opposite of his being the lord of nithyasUris.

We shall take up the 67th pAsuram next.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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thiruvAimozhi – 6.4.1 – kuravai AychchiyarOdu

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[of driving emperumAn away]SrI:  SrImathE SatakOpAya nama:  SrImathE rAmAnujAya nama:  SrImath varavaramunayE nama:

Full series >> Sixth Centum >> Fourth decad

Introduction for this pAsuram

Highlights from thirukkurukaippirAn piLLAn‘s introduction

No specific introduction.

Highlights from nanjIyar‘s introduction

In the first pAsuram, AzhwAr says “Induced by love, night and day (continuously), I got to enjoy the activities of krishNa; do I have any shortcoming?”.

Highlights from vAdhi kEsari azhagiya maNavALa jIyar‘s introduction

In the first pAsuram, AzhwAr says “Being induced by love, we continuously spoke and enjoyed the activities of krishNa who has ananthaSAyithvam (the quality of resting on serpent bed) which is the root cause for all incarnations; do we have any shortcoming?”.

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.

pAsuram

kuravai AychchiyarOdu kOththadhum kunRam onREndhiyadhum
uravu nIrp poygai nAgam kAyndhadhum uLpada maRRum pala
aravil paLLip pirAn than mAya vinaigaLaiyE alaRRi
iravum nan pagalum thavirgilam enna kuRaivu enakkE

Listen

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

AychchiyarOdu – with the cowherd girls
kuravai – in thirkkuravai (rAsa krIdA in vrindhAvanam)
kOththadhum – uniting (holding hands with all girls by inserting himself in between each of them, in the shape of a garland strung with different flowers)

(to stop the rain which came to interrupt his enjoyment with the cowherd girls)
onRu – a
kunRam – hill
Endhiyadhum – lifted it up and stood there holding it up for seven days effortlessly
uravu – matured
nIr – having water
poygai – in the pond
nAgam – kALiya serpent
kAyndhadhum – the way he angrily tamed
uLpada – like those
maRRum – other
pala – many [such acts]

(as said in “nAgaparyankam uthsrujya“, to incarnate)
aravil paLLi – the serpent bed on which he was resting
pirAn than – krishNa, the benefactor who left it behind, his
mAyam – amazing
vinaigaLaiyE – activities
alaRRi – reciting out of overwhelming love
nan – having goodness to facilitate us to think about his qualities
iravum – night
pagalum – day
thavirgilam – not stopping;
namakku – for us
enna – what
kuRai – shortcoming
uNdu – present?

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

krishNa united with the cowherd girls in thirukkuravai; he lifted up a hill and stood there holding it up for seven days effortlessly; he angrily tamed the kALiya serpent in the pond having matured water; we are reciting these and many such acts of krishNa, the benefactor who left behind the serpent bed on which he was resting, without stopping through night and day which are having the goodness to facilitate us to think about his qualities; what shortcoming is present in us [who have such experience]? Implies that there is no shortcoming of limited experience and experience which is stopped.

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

  • kuravai AychchiyarOdu kOththadhum – Why is AzhwAr directly enjoying this activity of emperumAn, instead of starting with his birth in “piRandhavARum“? Since emperumAn’s act of eliminating AzhwAr’s romantic anger in “minnidai madavAr” and uniting with him subsequently resembles emperumAn’s act of giving joy to the cowherd girls by performing rAsa krIdA with them, AzhwAr is starting with this particular act of emperumAn here. Only when AzhwAr enjoys them with his own effort, he can go in sequence! When emperumAn himself makes AzhwAr experience according to his will, AzhwAr’s experience would only be random [as in here]; emperumAn manifested his union with the cowherd girls in rAsa krIdA first. The joy emperumAn acquired by uniting with the cowherd girls from 5 lakh families in vrindhAvanam, is acquired just by his uniting with this one AzhwAr. Due to his great desire to be with each of the cowherd girls, he made himself secondary in the array of cowherd girls and held their hands. He is enjoying now as he previously desired in thiruvAimozhi 5.10.2kuravai piNaindha kuzhagum“. He mingled with them as one amongst them while staying in between the cowherd girls. Usually, girls will hold with each other while playing. Just as the girls could not sustain without krishNa in rAsa krIdA, in “minnidai madavAr”, he could not sustain without AzhwAr. kOkkai – stringing together. kuravaik kUththu (rAsa krIdA) is a dance which is done, holding hands together [forming a circular array].
  • kunRam onRu Endhiyadhum – There is an abode named svargam (heaven) which is focussed on enjoyment; and there exists a person named indhra who is reaping the fruits of his puNya (virtuous deeds) by enjoying with apsaras girls (celestial dancers) ; seeing that krishNa is having the same enjoyment with the cowherd girls without any constraints in earth, he becomes jealous and citing “krishNa stopped my feast” as a reason, sent hailstorm; at that time, emperumAn lifted a hill which was within his hands’ reach and stood with it. indhra is of the nature that if he sees someone in earth holding their nose (doing anushtAnams, yOga), he will fear for the safety of his throne and will try to disturb him as much as possible by sending these dancer girls. He does not realise that the one who enjoys in this manner is sarvESavaran (supreme lord) himself; that is because emperumAn presented himself as a cowherd boy, one amongst the cowherd clan. emperumAn eliminating the danger for the cows and cowherds during that hailstorm is much smaller compared to eliminating the danger for AzhwAr in “minnidai madavAr” [i.e., AzhwAr shunning emperumAn].
  • Endhiyadhum – Since this was done to help others, the hill appears like an ornament for his hand and does not trouble him at all. It appears as if emperumAn is holding a flower in his hand. How amazing that a seven year old boy held up the hill for seven consecutive days!
  • kunRam onRu Endhiyadhum – He remained as a sagOthri [close family member with paternal link] so that one need not worry “How are we going to pay him back for holding the hill up for seven days when he is only seven years old?”.
  • uravu nIr – The water having pride due to the depth of the river for which the bottom cannot be easily seen; or, due to the poison from kALiya, the water is so strong and unapproachable by anyone; or, since it is an ancient river, the water is strong due to its age.  uravu also means poison.
  • nAgam kAyndhadhum – Driving the kALiya serpent away. It is after this deed of overcoming kALiya that he engaged in water-sports with the cowherd girls.
  • uLpada maRRum pala – There is no count for such activities of emperumAn. In “piRandhavARum“, he [AzhwAr] could not speak about all activities due to his weakened state; here he is unable to speak due to overwhelming bliss. There were many such hurdles to unite with the cowherd girls, which were eliminated by emperumAn.
  • aravil paLLip pirAn – The sleep of worldly people is for selfish purpose and due to their thamO guNam (lethargy, ignorance etc); emperumAn’s sleep [yOga nidhrA] is for the protection of others. He is known as in thiruvAimozhi 5.4.11uRanguvAn pOl yOgu seydha perumAn” (emperumAn who pretends to be sleeping but really meditating). When he sleeps, it is for the protection of others; when he is awake too, it is for the same purpose. How amazing is his benefactorship!
  • aravil paLLip pirAn – Previously his mismatch with a serpent was explained; here his union with a serpent is explained. There, his discarding of the bhOga (serpent/enjoyment) is explained; here his attachment towards bhOga is explained. He drove away kALiya who was inimical; he has as his bed, AdhiSEsha who is friendly. AdhiSEsha performs services in many different ways and emperumAn too accepts his services in many ways. AdhiSEsha is known as in periyAzhwAr thirumozhi 4.3.10 “Ayiram paindhalaiya ananthan” (the thousand hooded anantha).
  • aravil paLLip pirAn – Since thiruppARkadal (kshIrAbdhi – milk ocean) is the root for all incarnations, AzhwAr is explaining it here; alternatively – AzhwAr is re-emphasising what he said previously in thiruvAimozhi 5.10.11nAgaNai misai nampirAn saraNE saraN” (the lotus feet of our lord who is resting on AdhiSEsha, is our refuge).
  • than mAya vinaigaLaiyE alaRRi – Praising his amazing activities in the form of sthOthrams.
  • iravu nan pagalum thavirgilam – When [day and night are] not favourable for bhagavath anubhavam, they are felt as said in thiruvAimozhi 2.1.4sudar koL irAp pagal” (night and day which are identified by the radiance (heat) of moon and sun); since these nights and days are favourable for bhagavath anubhavam, AzhwAr is prefixing them with “nal” (good). In separation, they feel like molten fire being poured on.
  • enna kuRaivu enakkE – Am I having the shortcoming of having to prepare food [to consume during the journey] to go seek for paramapadham where day and night have no effect as said in SrIvishNu purANam “na kAlas thathravai prabhu:“? In paramapadham, only singular experience [enjoying his supremacy] is present; but here, as said SrI rAmAyaNam bAla kANdam 77.26 “ … vijahAra bahUn ruthUn” (SrI rAma enjoyed with sIthAp pirAtti in different seasons without any restraint), I enjoyed emperumAn matching every season; in such case, do I have any shortcoming? There in paramapadham, only parathva anubhavam (experience of his supremacy) exists; his Seela guNa anubhavam (simplicity and other qualities) is only available here.

In the next article we will enjoy the next pAsuram.

adiyen sarathy ramanuja dasan

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iraNdAm thiruvandhAdhi – 65 – paNindhEn thirumEni

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avathArikai

emperumAn asks AzhwAr “Is there anything new that I have to do for you? Haven’t you attained everything already?”. AzhwAr thinking of the benefit that he has attained, responds “the benefit that I had obtained is the affection that I have for you”.

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

paNindhEn thirumEni paingamalam kaiyAl
aNindhEn un sEvadi mEl anbAy thuNindhEn
purindhEththi unnaip pugalidam pArththu AngE
irundhEththi vAzhum idhu

Word by Word Meaning

thirumEni – (Oh thirumAl!) your divine form
paNindhEn – worshipped
un sEvadi mEl – on your reddish divine feet
paim kamalam – beautiful lotus flowers
anbu Ay – with affection
kaiyAl aNindhEn – offered with hands
unnai – you
purindhu Eththi – praising desirously
pugal idam pArththu – looking at your dwelling in paramapadham (SrIvaikuNtam)
AngE irundhu Eththi idhu thuNindhEn – I ascertained to myself that staying there and praising you is the life that I should live

vyAkyAnam

paNindhEn thirumEniAzhwArs prefer his divine form to the divine qualities which describe his svarUpam (basic nature). Hence, AzhwAr says here that he worshipped at the divine feet of emperumAn.

paNindhEn – AzhwAr says that he, who was similar to the nature of rAvaNa when he had said as in SrI rAmAyaNam yudhdha kANdam 36-11 “dhvidhA bhajyEyamapyEvam na namEyam” (even if I am split into two, I will not fall at the feet (of SrI rAma)), after thinking about the beauty (of emperumAn’s divine form) fell at his divine feet.  Being a servitor, he changed the words in mUnRAm thiruvandhAdhi 1 “ponmEni kaNdEn” (saw the divine golden form) to “paNindhEn thirumEni ” (worshipped the divine form).

paingamalam kaiyAl aNindhEn un sEvadi mEl anbAy – with affection, I offered lotus flowers at your reddish divine feet and held on to them.

kaiyAl – since I submitted the flowers like this, I fulfilled the objective of having been given hands.

aNindhEn – Is it not proper for the losers to serve the victorious!

anbAy paNindhEn – worshipping you like this is not because I obtained knowledge. It is because of my involvement with you.

purindhu Eththi – when you set out to go, I worshipped you from the front; later, after you left, I worshipped you from behind too and praised you.

pugalidam pArththu – when you went back inside, I saw the beauty of your backside.

AngE irundhu Eththi – without having the mind to leave you from there, seeing the beauty of your backside, I did not want to forget the thought of praising you at that place, and ascertained that my praising you should continue like this. I became firm in that belief. A person by name SrI paranguSa dhAsar moved closely with SrI thirumalai nambi (one of the five AchAryars of swAmy rAmAnujar). He would quote SrI thirumalai nambi as follows: “In this pAsuram, the word pugalidam refers to SrIvaikuNtam to which emperumAn returns after completing his incarnation on earth. AzhwAr says that as mentioned in thiruppaLLANdu 12sUzhndhu irundhu Eththuvar pallANdE’ , he would praise emperumAn amidst nithyamukthas (eternal dwellers of SrIvaikuNtam and those who reached SrIvikuNtam after getting liberated from samsAram) and live there”. As mentioned in paramasamhithai “chAyA vA sathvamanugachchEth” (like shadow following any sentient being) it can be construed that AzhwAr is saying that he would look at the servitorship being carried to emperumAn at SrIvaikuNtam and remain ecstatic there.

We shall move on to the 66th pAsuram.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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thiruvAimozhi – 6.4 – kuravai

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Audio

Highlights from thirukkurukaippirAn piLLAn‘s introduction

See nampiLLai’s introduction.

Highlights from nanjIyar‘s introduction

See nampiLLai’s introduction.

Highlights from vAdhi kEsari azhagiya maNavALa jIyar‘s introduction

In the fourth decad – emperumAn manifested his agatithagatanASakthi (ability to unite contrary aspects) and instilled faith in AzhwAr that emperumAn can bestow the desired results; to reveal the pleasantly intoxicating nature of such supreme lord, AzhwAr highlights the following aspects:

  1. his ananthaSAyithvam (resting on the serpent bed)
  2. his amazing form
  3. his great splendour
  4. his form being purely spiritual
  5. his bestowing of results for those who desire/pray for such results
  6. his ability to remove our attachment towards others
  7. his greatly enjoyable form
  8. his assuming the form of a person who begs to others and fulfilling his own desire
  9. his having distinguished symbols
  10. his supremely radiant nature

Meditating upon these aspects, AzhwAr becomes blissful thinking “who is comparable to me who constantly enjoys right from here in this world, the heart-capturing qualities and activities of such krishNa?” and explains his easily approachable nature.

Highlights from periyavAchchAn piLLai‘s introduction

See nampiLLai‘s introduction.

Highlights from nampiLLai‘s introduction

In this decad, AzhwAr is comparable to SrI vAlmIki bhagavAn. vAlmIki could not spend even a moment without thinking about rAmAvathAram; his prabandham (SrI rAmAyaNam) was in line with that; AzhwAr too, does not know anything but krishNAvathAram; this decad will not talk about anything other than the activities of krishNa. Just as thiruvadi (hanuman) said SrI rAmAyaNam uththara kANdam 40.16 “bhAvO nAnyathra gachchathi” (my thoughts do not go towards anyone else) even rejecting emperumAn‘s para form (supreme form in SrIvaikuNta), AzhwAr too does not know anything other than krishNAvathAram.

emperumAn incarnated in this world to satisfy AzhwAr who was perplexed thinking that he could not approach emperumAn and enjoy him as said in thiruvAimozhi 5.3.9sENuyar vAnaththirukkum dhEvapirAn” (the supreme lord of celestial beings, who resides in the very lofty paramapadham); he desired as mentioned in thiruvAimozhi 5.3.10thol aruL nal vinaiyAl solak kUdum kol” (Will we be able to praise him by his virtuous deeds out of his mercy?); that is -reciting his divine names is by his divine mercy. Whatever AzhwAr could not enjoy in thiruvAimozhi 5.10piRandhavARum“, emperumAn manifests all his activities in SrI vrindhAvanam, now, AzhwAr experiences them as happening in present instead of seeing them as having happened in the past. AzhwAr, meditating upon emperumAn’s act of uniting with him to sustain him [in previous decad] while he was going to be finished moving away from him in thiruvAimozhi 6.2minnidai madavAr“, concludes here [joyfully] that there is none capable like emperumAn. He experienced similar emotions in thiruvAimozhi 3.10sanmam palapala” too; what is the difference between that and this? There – the joy was simply due to AzhwAr acquiring wisdom which differentiated him from other worldly people; but here, as emperumAn approaches AzhwAr closely manifesting his qualities and lets AzhwAr enjoy them, AzhwAr becomes totally out of control, and speaks out joyfully.

Each pAsuram is discussed subsequently.

adiyen sarathy ramanuja dasan

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iraNdAm thiruvandhAdhi – 64 – kadhaiyin perum poruLum

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avathArikai

AzhwAr prays to emperumAn “you are the one who carries out beneficial activities even for those who are proud that they are ISvaras. You should help me, who cannot do anything without you and who am considering you as everything, to enjoy reciting your divine names.”

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

kadhaiyin perum poruLum kaNNA nin pErE
idhayam iruandhavaiyE Eththil kadhaiyin
thirumozhiyAy ninRa thirumAlE unnaip
parumozhiyAl kANap paNi

Word by Word Meaning

kaNNA – Oh krishNa!
kadhaiyin – in ithihAsams (epics) and purANams (ancient biographies)
perum poruLum – eminent meanings
idhayam – their inner connotations
irundhavaiyE – as they are
Eththil – if known and praised
nin pErE – (they are all) your divine names only
kadhaiyin thirumozhiyAy ninRa thirumAlE – Oh thirumAL (SrIman nArAyaNa)! You are the epitome of all that is mentioned in the great vEdhas
unnai – you
paru mozhiyAlE – to enjoy after identifying you with the great words of vEdhas
paNi – please show mercy

vyAkyAnam

kadhaiyin perum poruLum kaNNA nin peyarE – if one were to delve deep into ithihAsa (epics) and purANas (ancient literature dealing with biographies), what they reveal are your divine names which deal with your auspicious qualities and your divine activities.

idhayam irundhu avaiyE Eththil – even if the meaning is not taken in its entirety and only the inner meaning is considered and emperumAn is praised (it will be the same). If one were to consider the heart of ithihAsas and purANas [in other words, the central theme of these sacred texts], it is your divine names which have been mentioned in them with finality. AzhwAr has used the verses kadhaiyin perum poruL in the same context as he had used earlier in the verses Oththin poruL mudivum iththanaiyE uththaman pEr Eththum in the 39th pAsuram.

kadhaiyin thirumozhiyAy ninRa thirumAlE – the knowledge mentioned in upanishaths also mentions words which identify you. Any word with meaning would reveal emperumAn and pirAtti. pirAtti is word and emperumAn is the meaning. Hasn’t vishNu purANam 1-8-18 said “arthO vishNu: iyam vANI (vishNu is the meaning and she (pirAtti) is the word)!

unnai – you, thirumAL, who have been established in ithihAsas and purANas

unnaip parumozhiyAl kANap paNi – instead of seeing you with the help of these words, you should shower mercy on me so that I could say as mentioned in thaiththirIya upanishath “ahamannam ahamannam ahamannam” (“I am food” repeated several times) in a loud voice and see you. You should grace me such that I would feel elated seeing you, praising you with words which do not have any fault, and enjoying you. Only when I am able to see you, could I praise you with words which are without faults. AzhwAr says that emperumAn should grace him such that he is given divine eyes with which he would be able to see emperumAn clearly. In the words kadhaiyin thirumozhiyAy ninRa, the term kadhai  could be construed to mean incidents taken from ithihAsas and purANas instead of incidents taken from upanishath.

We shall take up the 65th pAsuram next.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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iraNdAm thiruvandhAdhi – 63 – EREzhum venRadarththa

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avathArikai

AzhwAr says that only emperumAn is apt to be attained since he removed the curse of the egotistic rudhra. He says that when there is any danger, without making any distinction, he would remove such danger, whether it is for his consorts or for the egotistic rudhra. This implies that it is only emperumAn who is greater than everyone else and that other ISvaras (lords) cannot be refuge for others as well as to themselves (in other words they are not capable of protecting others  or themselves).

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

EREzhum venRadarththa endhai eri uruvaththu
EREri patta vidu sAbam pARERi
uNdathalai vAy niRaiyak kOttangai oNkurudhi
kaNda poruL sollil kadhai

Word by Word Meaning

ERu Ezhum – the seven bulls
venRu – being victorious over them
adarththa – destroyed
endhai – kaNNapirAn (krishNa), my swAmy (lord)
eri uruvaththu ERu ERi patta – suffered by rudhra who has a fiery form and who has bull as his vehicle
vidu sAbam – curse given by brahmA

(to get rid of)
pARu ERi uNda thalai vAy niRaiya – to fill up the mouth of the skull which eagles eat as food
kOdu – hand which is like a bud
am kai – with beautiful hands (given after tearing)
oN kurudhi – with beautiful blood
kaNda poruL – that incident seen (when the skull fell out of [rudhra’s] hands)
kadhai – will end up like mahAbhAratha story

vyAkyAnam

ERu Ezhum venRu adarththa endhai – the lord who was victorious over the seven bulls (for the sake of nappinnaip pirAtti)

eri uruvaththu ERu ERi – Siva who has the complexion of fire and who has bull as his vehicle

ERu ERi – Siva who has a bull (much like a mendicant having bull for his survival)

patta idu sAbam – brahmA, who allowed until Siva plucked out his head, cursed him saying “since you have carried out the heinous crime of severing my head, let this skull never leave your hand”.

idu sAbam – mAthsya purANam 182 says “kapAlee thvam bhavishyasi” (you will become one having skull), the curse given by brahmA. brahmA, who could not tolerate the fame of Siva, asked him to sever the head and then put the blame on Siva for severing it.

pARu ERi uNdapARu refers to birds such as eagles, vultures etc. Siva went from place to place, carrying the skull, which is normally eaten by eagles and vultures, with the birds feeling happy looking at the sight.

thalai vAy niRaiya – to enable the (mouth of the ) skull to fill up

kOttangai – beautiful hand like a bud

oN kurudhi kaNda poruL sollilemperumAn sprayed the sweat from his divine chest on the skull and made it to break out of Siva’s hand.

oN kurudhi – beautiful blood. It was similar to the saffron on the chest of emperumAn.

am kai – with the beautiful hand which was capable of removing the heinous crime.

oN kurudhi –  mAthya purANam 182 says “thasya rakthasya nisruthA” (the flow of blood). Some people say that emperumAn sprayed blood. Is it correct to say that blood was similar to vermillion? There is not much of a difference between the two. It is not incorrect to say this since it compares with the incomparable emperumAn.

kaNda poruL sollil kadhai – If truth were to be told..

kadhai – this is like mahAbhAratham. Siva need not be an ISvaran like this; neither does he need to be one who had committed a heinous crime. nampiLLai would narrate an incident involving nanjIyar: One day, nanjIyar gave a mango to nampiLLai and asked him to give it to a person by name nambi thiruvazhudhivaLanAdu dhAsar. When nampiLLai went to him, dhAsar was explaining the meaning for this pAsuram (63rd pAsuram) “We have not heard that kaNNapirAn (krishNa) who had killed seven bulls committed a crime or that he had to go to someone’s door to carry out any atonement. But Siva did not kill brahmA (brahmA was very much alive after the head was severed). By plucking the head of one who was alive even after losing his head, Siva committed a crime and started going to various places to get rid of its effect. emperumAn removed that crime due to his connection. Isn’t this the difference between emperumAn and others! ” (it is implied here that the one who killed the bulls did not commit any crime but the one who has bull as his vehicle, committed a crime by severing a head, though the person whose head he had severed, did not die!). Who is ISvaran among these three – Siva, who committed the crime by severing a head? Or brahmA, who lost his head and suffered? Or emperumAn who removed the curse of Siva? You be the judge!

We shall move on to the 64th pAsuram next.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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