nAnmugan thiruvandhAdhi – 71 – sEyan aNiyan

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It is not that we do not know that emperumAn protected us during the time of worldly deluge. AzhwAr feels sad not only for this but also for the fact that we do not know till date the charama SlOka (ultimate verse) that emperumAn gave us when he tried to lift us from the deluge of samsAram (materialistic realm).

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

sEyan aNiyan siRiyan migapperiyan
Ayan thuvaraikkOnAy ninRa mAyan anRu
Odhiya vAkkadhanaik kallAr
EdhilarAm mey gyAnamil

Word for Word Meanings

sEyan – being at a far away distance
migap periyan – being huge
siRiyan – incarnating in lowly forms (lower than samsAris)
aNiyan – being very easy to approach
Ayan – being born in the clan of herdsmen
thuvarai kOnAy ninRa – having the greatness of being the head of dhwArakApuri (dhwArka, in present day Gujarat State)
mAyan – emperumAn
anRu – during that time (when mahAbhAratha war was fought)
Odhiya – mercifully said (on the seat of his chariot, to arjuna)
vAkku adhanai – that divine word (of charama SlOkam)
ulagaththil – in this world
kallAr – not having learnt
mey gyAnam il – without having the inclination for true knowledge
Edhilar Am – are inimical towards emperumAn


sEyanemperumAn is at such a far away distance that brahmA, rudhra et al would not know about him. Did not brahmA say in SrI vishNu purANam 1-9-55 “yanna dhEvO na munayO na chAham na cha Sankara: I jAnanthi paramESasya thath vishNO: paramam padham II” (dhEvas (celestial entities), munis (sages), I (brahmA), rudhra do not know the superior nature of that paramESvara (supreme being) vishNu) and in mahAbhAratham mOksha parvam “na sa Sakyas thvayA dhrashtum mayAnyair vApi saththama I sarvEshAm sAkshibhUthO’sau na  grAhya kEnachith kvachith II” (Oh child, rudhra! That emperumAn is not capable of being seen by you, me or anyone else. Even though he sees everyone, he cannot be seen by anyone at any time)! emperumAn himself has said in varAha purANam “adhyApi mAm na jAnanthi rudhrEndhrAs sapithAmahA:” (rudhra and indhra, along with brahmA, do not know me even today) and in SrI bhagavath gIthA 7.25nAham prakASa: sarvasya” (I do not manifest to anyone)! This same meaning has been brought out by SrI vishNu dharmam SlOkam “na yasya rUpam na balaprabhAvau na cha svabhAva: paramasya pumsa:  I vigyAyathE SarvapithAmahAdhyais tham vAsudhEvam praNamAmyachinthyam II” (I bow down to that supreme being vAsudhEva whose divine form, greatness of strength and qualities are not known by brahmA, rudhra et al). bahvrucha Sruthi also said “na thE vishnO jAyamANO na jAthO dhEva mahimna: paramanthamApa” (Oh vishNu! No one who has been born earlier or is going to be born in future, knows the outer limit of your greatness).

What is the reason for not being known?

migapperiyan – one who has humongous form, nature, qualities, wealth etc.  He is so huge that vEdhas, which had set out to measure him, returned without completing the task as mentioned in thaiththirIya upanishath “yathO vAchO nivarthanthE aprApya manasA saha” (whichever words with mind returned without attaining supreme being…)

aNiyan – he will be close at hand for those who have just a little bit of desire to see him.

sEyan – aNiyan – he is very far away from people such as dhuryOdhana and those who attempt on their own to see him. He is close at hand for people such as yaSOdhA and those who look up to him. Hasn’t nammAzhwAr mercifully said in his thiruvAimozhi 1-3-4yArumOr nilaimaiyan ena aRivariya emperumAn yArumOr nilaimaiyan ena aRivu eLiya emperumAn” (for those who attempt on their own, emperumAn is difficult to be estimated; for those who attain him through his grace, he is simple to be estimated)!

How is he so close at hand for the favourable ones?

siRiyan – since he is born below the levels of his followers, due to his desire, he manifests himself as a very simple entity.

sEyan aNiyan siRiyan migapperiyanALavandhAr, one of the preceptors in the lineage of our AchArya gurupamparai, combined these four divine names in this SlOka from sthOthra rathnam “namO namO vAngmanasAdhi bhUmayE namO namO vAngmanasaika bhUmayE I namO namO’nantha mahAvibhUthayE namO namO’nantha dhayaika sindhavE  II”(salutations to you, who are difficult to attain for the words and minds of those who attempt to attain you on their own; salutations to you who are easy to attain for the words and minds of those who see you due to your grace; salutations to you who are having unlimited, huge wealth; salutations to you who are like an ocean of mercy). Since mercy is the reason for his incarnation as vAmana (dwarf), ALavandhAr is calling emperumAn as anantha dhayaika  sindhavE .

AzhwAr gives an example for emperumAn’s quality of easy approachability..

Ayan – herdsman who cannot distinguish between his right hand and left hand (he is such ignorant)

thuvaraikkOnAy ninRa mAyan – leaving aside his role as head of both vibhUthis (material and spiritual realms), he stood as the head of dhwArakA.

mAyan – one with amazing activities. Apart from being easily approachable by favourable entities, he earned the ill-fame of “hiding in dhwArakA from the lowly jarAsandha after losing to him” only because he wanted to help his favourable person bhIma to kill jarAsandha.

periyavAchchAn piLLai, one of the commentators for this prabandham said that Ayan thuvaraikkOnAy ninRa mAyan is the explanation for the terms aNiyan siRiyan while another commentator, appiLLai considered the term Ayan as the explanation for aNiyan siRiyan and the words thuvaraikkOnAy ninRa mAyan as the explanation for the words sEyan periyan. As an example for these two, he says that emperumAn had the simplicity of being born in the clan of herdsmen and, having the greatness of being the controller of dhwArakA, he took multitudinous forms in order to dance with ten thousand women, thus exhibiting his amazing activity.

mAyan anRu Odhiya vAkkadhanaik kallAr – those who did not learn the true words which krishNa recited at the beginning of mahAbhAratha war. Those who did not learn through their AchAryan (teacher) the charama SlOkam (ultimate hymn) as said in SrI bhagavath gIthA 18-66sarva dharmAn parithyajya mAmEkam SaraNam vraja I aham thvA sarva pApEbhyO mOkshayishyAmi mA sucha: II” (giving up all righteous activities along with their traces, attain me (who is having qualities such as easily approachable etc) as the means. I (who am having qualities of knowledge and power) will liberate you from all hurdles.  Do not grieve).

aNiyan siRiyan Odhiya vAkkuAzhwAr explains the qualities of easy to approach etc, as mentioned in the term mAm.

sEyan periyAn Odhiya vAkku – AzhwAr explains the qualities of knowledge, power etc as mentioned in the term aham.

thuvarikkOn – this explains that he is the swAmy (lord).

mAyan – without distinguishing between his qualities of saulabhyam etc and his qualities of gyAna, Sakthi etc.

kallAr ulagaththil – is it that only one or two persons in this world do not know charama SlOkam? AzhwAr says that most of the people do not know the meanings of charama SlOkam.

What is the reason for not learning this?

mey gyAnam il – the reason for not learning this is the absence of true knowledge about thathva (knowledge about sentient, insentient and ISvara entities), hitha (knowledge about the means to attain emperumAn), and purushArtha (knowledge about the goal to be enjoyed after attaining emperumAn’s divine feet). What is the reason for not having this knowledge?

EdhilarAm – being haters of emperumAnEdhilar  – enemies. As mentioned by emperumAn himself in SrI bhagavath gIthA 16.19thAnaham dhvishatha: krUrAn samsArEshu narAdhamAn I kshipAmyajasram aSubhAn AsurishvEva yOnishu II ” (I push those who hate me, who are cruel and the lowliest among men into samsAram, and there too, in the clan of demons) and in “AgyAchchEdhI mama dhvEshi” (one who crosses my order is one who hates me), emperumAn considers in his cool mind that these people are his haters. As mentioned in SrI rAmAyaNam yudhdha kANdam 106-6 “SathrO: prakyAtha vIryasya” he makes them declare that he (emperumAn) is their enemy.

We will take up the 72nd pAsuram next.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

archived in

pramEyam (goal) –
pramANam (scriptures) –
pramAthA (preceptors) –
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