periya thirumadal – 1 – manniya palpoRi sEr

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manniya palpoRi sEr Ayira vAy vAL aravin
senni maNik kudumith theyvach chuddar naduvuL

Word by Word Meaning

manniya – may you live long!

pal poRi sEr Ayira vAy vAL aravin – thiruvananthAzhwAn (AdhiSEshan, the divine mattress for emperumAn), who has many dots (circular spots) on his body and thousands of mouths as well as radiance – his.

senni maNik kudumi – from the carbuncles which are present in the raised hoods of AdhiSEshan

dheyvam sudar naduvuL – among the rays which are extraordinary


manniya – let auspiciousness prevail. Just as King janaka said in SrI rAmAyaNam bAla kANdam 73-28 on seeing perumAL and pirAtti [SrI rAma and sIthA] “bhadhram thE” (let auspicious things happen to you). just as nammAzhwAr mercifully wished mangaLASasanam (wishing well) at the beginning of thiruviruththam 2 “vAzhiyarO” (may you live long) and just as jatAyu maharaja sang pallANdu (wishing well) to SrI rAma after seeing him in separation, as said in SrI rAmAyaNam AraNya kANdam 67-15 “yAmOshadhimivAyushman anvEshasi mahAvanE” (May you live long! Whosoever you are searching for, just like looking for a rare medicine in a huge forest, that (sIthA) dhEvi and my life have both been usurped by rAvaNa), she (parakAla nAyaki, who is thirumangai AzhwAr in feminine form) sings pallANdu as soon as she decides to engage with madal. Since she knows well the power of her speech, she says that instead of being destroyed due to the curse of her speech, it is better to fall at her feet and survive.

palpoRi – having many spots. Just as ruby is embedded in gold, this talks about the beauty [of the spots] which make one to keep staring at them without taking the eyes off.

sEr – the way the spots are mingled on the divine body of AdhiSEshan is just like milk and sugar candy are mixed together intimately, unlike ripened mango and bitter gourd which can never mix well. Since there are a thousand spots, would they appear grotesque? No, they will appear homogeneous, just like narathvam and simhathvam (the reference here is to emperumAn who incarnated with the head of a lion and the body of a human).

Ayira vAy – thousand heads. Since AdhiSEshan has the constant touch of emperuman’s soft, smiling divine form, it appears as if he takes a thousand heads as an outlet for the overpowering flood of happiness.

vAL aravin – vAL refers to radiance. Due to the touch of emperumAn, AdhiSEshan’s radiance too gets displayed resplendently. Just as dhaSaratha chakravarthy said in SrI rAmAyaNam ayOdhyA kANdam 12-104 “aham punar dhEvakumArarUpam alankrutham tham suthamAvrajantham I nandhAmi paSyannapi dharSanEva bhavAmi dhrushtvaiva punaryuvEva  II” (as soon as I see rAma, my son, who is like a celestial prince and is well decorated, with my inner eyes, I feel overjoyed. If I see him in person, I feel like a youth, once again) and just as vasudhEva felt that he had become a young man once again after seeing krishNa, his son, as said in the SlOkam “mahOthsavamivAsAdhya puthrAnanavilOkanAth I yuvEva vasudhEvO’bhUth vihAyAbhyAgathAm jarAm II ” (since he got to see his son’s face, vasudhEva felt as if he had seen a great festival, getting rid of his old age and becoming a youth again), is there any surprise that AdhiSEshan felt the way as described above, on being touched by emperumAn!

senni maNikudumith theyvachchudar naduvuLsenni: head. Here, this term refers to AdhiSEshan’s hood. maNi – the carbuncle on the head. kudumi – lustre of the gem (carbuncle). dheyvam – divine; aprAkrutham (not composed of the three qualities of sathva (good), rajas (passion) and thamas (ignorance) which are seen in samsAram, the materialistic world). sudar naduvul – in the midst of this radiance.

In the earlier line also, there was mention of radiance (vAL). Here too, there is a mention of radiance. What is the difference between these two? The earlier one referred to the naturally occurring radiance of AdhiSEshan, common to the species of snakes while this radiance is occurring due to experiencing emperumAn. Unlike the radiance of materials which are found in this world, unlike the radiance of emperumAn himself, this is the radiance obtained by constantly enjoying emperumAn. This radiance is not seen in emperumAn too.

Amidst the extraordinary radiance of lustrous carbuncle which is located on thiruvananthAzhwAn’s (AdhiSEshan’s) head, just like rising out of the watery waves of river gangA  which is flowing fiercely in white colour, the one who is reclining….

We will take up the next two lines of the thirumadal in the next article.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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