periya thirumadal – 36 – ponnagaram pinnE

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ponnagaram pinnE pulamba valam koNdu                                                47
mannum vaLanAdu kaivittu mAdhirangaL

Word by word meaning

ponnagaram – all the people who were residing in the beautiful city of ayOdhyA
pinnE pulamba – even though they came behind (SrI rAma) crying (telling him not to go to the forest)
valam koNdu – not stepping back from his from resolve
vaLam mannu nAdu kaivittu – renouncing the wealthy state of kOsala


ponnagaram – ayOdhyA matches the aprAkrutha (not belonging to material world) land of  SrIvaikuNtam which is mentioned in thiruvAimozhi 6-8-1 as “ponnulagu” (golden place). The reason for this is that just as nithyamukthas (permanent residents of SrIvaikuNtam as well as those who went from material world after attaining liberation), the people of ayOdhyA took great joy in mingling with SrI rAma. SrI rAmAyaNam ayodhyA kANdam 59-9 says “api vrukshA: parimlAnA: sapushpAnkura kOrakA:” (Even insentient entities in ayOdhyA such as trees with flower, tender shoot and bud were withering (due to separation from SrI rAma)).

ponnagaram pinnE pulamba – the people of ayOdhyA went behind SrI rAma, wailing, and calling out to him, unable to sustain being separated from him. Did not kulasEkara AzhwAr too say in perumAL thirumozhi 8-5 “suRRamellAm pinthodara” ((SrI rAma) was followed by relatives and others)!

valam koNdu – emperumAn who incarnated as SrI rAma to display qualities of easy approachability, softness etc relating to simplicity, hardened his heart to manifest a deep resolve since he was going away from those who are dear to him. valam – strength.

mannum vaLanAdu kaivittu – though he gave up his right over the throne, did he at the least stay in the country? Did he not leave the country and go to forest?

mannum vaLanAdu – the state of kOsala, which is sweeter than ayOdhyA and over which he had the  right to rule over.

kaivittu – leaving ayOdhyA, with even animals suffering from the pangs of separation, just as it is mentioned by dhaSaratha chakravarthy’s minister sumanthra “mama thvaSvA nivruthasya na prAvarthantha varthmani I ushNamaSru vimunjchanthO rAmE samprasthithE vanam II” (my horses (after leaving SrI rAma) could not go on the correct path; after SrI rAma went to the forest, they shed tears of sorrow). bhUthaththAzhwAr says in iraNdAm thiruvandhAdhi 15thirindhadhu venjamaththuth thErkadavi pirindhadhu sIthaiyai mAn pin pOy” ( was it he (SrI rAma) who entered the forests and got separated from sIthA?)  He normally sleeps on the serpent bed (AdhiSEshan). Did he sleep on the ground? Is it not an act which makes others to feel very much worried for him? Just as kulasEkara AzhwAr says in perumAL thirumozhi 9-2 “evvARu nadandhanai emmirAmAvO” (How did you manage to walk in the forest, our dear SrI rAma?) and in perumAL thirumozhi 9-3 kallaNai mEl kaNthuyilak kaRRanaiyO kAkuththA” (Oh SrI rAma! Did you learn to sleep on a bed of stones?) did he not carry out activities which made those who were dear to him have a churning feel in their stomachs?

In the next article, we will discuss the next part of this prabandham.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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