sthOthra rathnam – SlOkams 11 to 20 – Simple Explanation

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SlOkam 11 – In this pAsuram the parathva lakshaNam (identity of supremacy) is explained.

SvAbhAvikAnavadhikAthiSayESithruthvam
nArAyaNa thvayi na mrushyathi vaidhika: ka: |
brahmA SivaS Sathamakha: parama: svarAtithi
EthE’pi yasya mahimArNavaviprushasthE ||

Oh nArAyaNa! brahmA, Siva, indhra and mukthAthmA ,who is not bound by karma and greater than all of those dhEvathAs – all of these said persons are like a drop in the ocean of your greatness; which vaidhika (one who practices vEdham) will not tolerate your aiSwarya (ability to control) which is natural and having boundless greatness?

SlOkam 12 – In this pAsuram, instead of the (common and specific) names which cause doubts about the identity of the person, ALavandhAr is mercifully explaining the names which are individually complete and are able to clearly identify the supremacy of emperumAn.

kaSSrI: Sriya: paramsathvasamASraya: ka:
ka: puNdarIkanayana: purushOththama: ka: |
kasyAyuthAyuthaSathaikakalAmSakAmSE viSvam vichithrachidhachithpravibhAgavruththam ||

Who is the wealth of SrI: (SrI mahAlakshmi)? Who has pure goodness in him? Who is lotus-eyed? Who is known as purushOththama? Whose one small fraction of (thousandth of thousandth of many crores sized) vow/will sustains all of this world which is having diversified categories of chEthana (sentient entities) and achEthana (insentient entities)?

SlOkam 13 – ALavandhAr explains kshEthragyathva (being jIvAthmA) of brahmA rudhra et al and parathva (supremacy) of bhagavAn through incidents from ithihAsam and purANam.

vEdhApahAragurupAthaka dhaithyapIdAdhi
Apath vimOchanamahishtapalapradhAnai: |
kOnya: prajApaSupathI paripAthi kasya
pAdhOdhakEna sa Sivas svaSirOdhruthEna ||

Who else (other than you) protected brahmA who is known as prajApathi and Siva who is known as paSupathi, by removing the dangers such as stealing of vEdham [brahmA losing vEdham], sin acquired due to plucking own father’s head [rudhra plucking the head of brahmA] and grief inflicted by asuras [for indhra et al dhEvathAs] etc? By holding whose SrIpAdha thIrtham (holy water which washed the feet) on his head did Siva become pure?

SlOkam 14 ALavandhAr concludes (the series of these five pAsurams) explaining the supremacy of bhagavAn through logic and reasoning which are favourable to pramANam (SAsthram, authentic scriptures).

kasyOdharE haravirinchimukha: prapancha:
kO rakshadhImamajanishta cha kasya nAbhE: |
krAnthvA nigIrya punarudhgirathi thvadhanya:
ka: kEna vaisha paravAnidhi SakyaSanka: ||

In whose stomach Siva, brahmA et al and the world were subdued? Who is protecting this world? From whose navel (this world) was created? Who else other than you measured, swallowed and spat out this world again? Can there even be a doubt on the lordship of this world?

SlOkam 15 – In this SlOkam, while this is clearly established through authentic texts, as said in SrI bhagavath gIthA 16.20 “AsurIm yOnimApannA:” (being born as asura), thinking “Alas! These demoniac people are missing out on him!”, ALavandhAr feels sorrow for the loss of such people. Alternative explanation – Let this distinguished lord be not seen by demoniac people as said in thiruvAimozhi 1.3.4yArumOr nilaimaiyan ena aRivariya emperumAn” (emperumAn is such that he cannot be perceived by [envious] people as “He is of such qualities”).

thvAm SeelarUpacharithai: paramaprakrushta
sathvEna sAthvikathayA prabalaiScha SAsthrai: |
prakhyAthadhaivaparamArthavidhAm mathaiScha
naivAsuraprakruthaya: prabhavanthi bOdhdhum ||

[Alas!] The demoniac people are incapable of knowing you (who is superior to all) who is known through

  • your Seela guNam (the quality of simplicity), form (which is glorified by the vEdham) and (divine) activities,
  • your abode/wealth which is filled with pure goodness,
  • SAsthrams which are strong/firm because of their nature of goodness and
  • through the opinions of those who know the truth about you.

SlOkam 16 – ALavandhAr thinks about noble souls reaching ermperumAn due to emperumAn’s simplicity  and considers it [their knowing/attaining emperumAn] as his (ALavandhAr‘s) own benefit.

ullangitha thrividha sImasamAdhiSAyi
sambhAvanam thava paribradimasvabhAvam |
mAyAbalEna bhavathA’pi nigUhyamAnam
paSyanthi kEchidhaniSam thvadhananyabhAvA: ||

Those (few) great souls who think about you exclusively are seeing your prabhuthva (lordship) which is beyond the three types of limitations (kAla (time), dhESa (place) and vasthu (entity)) and is beyond any doubt of “Isthere anyone equal or higher then you?”, even when your such lordship was concealed by you by your amazing ability.

SlOkam 17 – Here ALavandhAr explains the variety of entities which are controlled by bhagavAn and which are required to be the target of his sarvESvarathva (lordship over everything) which was explained previously.

yadhaNdam aNdAthara gOcharam cha yath
dhaSOththarANyAvaraNAni yAni  cha |
guNA: pradhAnam purusha: param padham
parAthparam brahma cha thE vibhUthaya: ||

(1) brahmANdam [the 14 layered oval shaped universe under the control of brahmA], (2) whatever is inside the aNdam, (3) those [seven] AvaraNas (enclosures) [which cover the aNdam] each of which is 10 times bigger in size than the previous one and all of these,(4) qualities viz sathva (goodness), rajas (passion) and thamas (ignorance),  (5) mUla prakruthi (primordial matter), (6) the collection of jIvAthmAs (sentient entities), (7) SrIvaikuNtam (spiritual realm), (8) the collection of nithyasUris who are greater than mukthAthmAs (who are greater than dhEvathAs starting with brahmA et al), and (9) the divine auspicious form(s) are all your bodies/forms.

SlOkam 18 ALavandhAr previously spoke about the greatness of SaraNya (refuge – the lord) and in this pAsuram, to eliminate the thought of hesitation in us thinking “How can I approach such ubhaya vibhUthi nAtha (the lord of both worlds)?”, explains twelve qualities which are those which let the devotees engage in him. Alternatively – Previously bhagavAn‘s sarvESvarathvam (supremacy) is explained and now he speaks about his qualities which are apt to be spoken about.

vaSI vadhAnyO guNavAn rujuS Suchir
mrudhurdhayALur madhurassthiras sama: |
kruthI kruthagyasthvamasi svabhAvathas
samasthakalyANaguNAmruthOdhdhi: ||

You are naturally a nectarean ocean of auspicious qualities such as (1) being controlled (by your devotees), (2) being generous (of presenting yourself to your devotees), (3) having sauSeelya (excellence in disposition,(4) presenting yourself to everyone without discrimination), (5) being honest (in mind, words and actions), (6) having purity (to show your mercy unconditionally), (7) being unable to bear the separation from your devotees, (8) being compassionate (cannot bear the sorrow of your devotees), (9) being sweet, firm in protecting (your devotees), (10) being equal (for all who surrender unto you), (11) being one who engages in actions (of your devotees, considering them to be your own) and (12) being grateful towards your devotees even for the smallest of their acts.

SlOkam 19 – ALavandhAr says that just as bhagavAn‘s auspicious qualities are countless, each quality in itself is boundless.

uparyuparyubjabhuvO’pi pUrushAn
prakalpya thE yE SathamithyanukramAth |
giras thvadhEkaikaguNAvadhIpsayA
sadhA sthithA nOdhyamathO’thiSErathE ||

By reciting “thE yE Satham” (such hundred) repeatedly for more and more brahmAs, vEdha vAkyams (sacred sounds/hymns) are always focussed on imagining new brahmAs, desiring to see the boundary of your each quality, and have not moved forward crossing over the starting stage.

SlOkam 20 – ALavandhAr now explains the greatness of the devotees who are the enjoyers of the previously explained qualities of bhagavAn. Alternative explanation – If there is so much greatness for those devotees who acquired such greatness from bhagavAn as said in brahma sUthram 1.1.20 “asminnasya cha thadhyOgam SAsthi” (Sruthi explains blissful togetherness of jIvAthmA with brahmam which is blissful), it is obvious that bhagavAn’s greatness cannot be measured.

thvadhASrithAnAm jagadhudhbhavasthithi
praNASasamsAravimOchanAdhaya: |
bhavanthi leelA vidhayaScha vaidhikAs
thvadhIya gambhIra manOnusAriNa: ||

For your devotees (like brahmA et al) creating the world, protecting, annihilating, helping to cross over the samsAra (material realm), etc., are like sports; the rules of vEdham too follow the deep divine hearts of your devotees.

adiyen sarathy ramanuja dasan

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About Sarathy Thothathri

Disciple of SrImath paramahamsa ithyAdhi pattarpirAn vAnamAmalai jIyar (29th pattam of thOthAdhri mutt). Descendant of komANdUr iLaiyavilli AchchAn (bAladhanvi swamy, a cousin of SrI ramAnuja). Born in AzhwArthirungari, grew up in thiruvallikkENi (chennai), presently living under the shade of the lotus feet of jagathAchArya SrI rAmAnuja, SrIperumbUthUr. Learned sampradhAyam principles from (varthamAna) vAdhi kEsari azhagiyamaNavALa sampathkumAra jIyar swamy, vELukkudi krishNan swamy, gOmatam sampathkumArAchArya swamy and many others. Full time sEvaka/servitor of SrIvaishNava sampradhAyam. Engaged in translating our AzhwArs/AchAryas works in Simple thamizh and English, and coordinating the translation effort in many other languages. Also engaged in teaching dhivyaprabandham, sthOthrams, bhagavath gIthA etc and giving lectures on various SrIvaishNava sampradhAyam related topics in thamizh and English regularly. Taking care of koyil.org portal, which is a humble offering to our pUrvAchAryas. koyil.org is part of SrI varavaramuni sambandhi Trust (varavaramuni.com) initiatives.

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