thiruviruththam – 100 – nallAr navil

SrI:  SrImathE SatakOpAya nama:  SrImathE rAmAnujAya nama:  SrImath varavaramunayE nama:

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avathArikai (Introduction)

AzhwAr was asked “You have the knowledge to obtain the mercy of sarvESvaran and the position to clearly state that sarvESvaran is the means to attain him, as a result of which you have been able to get rid of samsAram which is a hurdle in attaining sarvESvaran. However, what can samsAris, who do not have your knowledge and who are not fortunate to attain sarvESvaran, do?” AzhwAr responds saying “They may not have knowledge to the extent that I have; it is enough if they recite these pAsurams; they will also attain the same benefit which I attained”

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

nallAr navil kurugUr nagarAn thirumAl thiruppEr
vallAr adikkaNNi sUdiya mARan viNNapm seydha
sollAr thodaiyal innURum vallAr azhundhAr piRappAm
pollA aruvinai mAyavan sERRaLLal poynnilaththE

Word-by-Word Meanings

nallAr – distinguished people\
navil – speaking (permanently repeating what AzhwAr said)
kurugUr – known as thirukkurugUr
nagarAn – lord of thirukkurugUr
thirumAl – Sriya:pathi (consort of SrI mahAlakshmi), his
thiruppEr – divine names
vallAr – SrIvaishNavas who are qualified to recite, their
adi – divine feet
kaNNi – garland
sUdiya – one who donned on his head
mARan – nammAzhwAr
viNNappam seydha – mercifully sung
sol – through divine words
Ar – complete
thodaiyal – garland
innURum – these hundred pAsurams
vallAr – those who can recite
piRappAm – known as birth
pollA – cruel (capable of destroying AthmA)
aru – difficult (to cross over)
vinai – being the cause for good and bad deeds
mAyam – being deceitful (by creating taste)
van – being strong
aLLal sERu – pressing like a quagmire
poy – being temporary
nilaththil – in this prakruthi (primordial matter)
azhundhAr – will not be caught

Simple Translation

AzhwAr is the lord of thirukkurugUr where distinguished people keep reciting his divine words. He dons on his head the divine feet of SrIvaishNavas who keep reciting the divine names of SrIman nArAyaNan, the divine consort of SrI mahAlakshmi. Those who learn well the hundred pAsurams which are like a garland composed of fully complete words and which are divinely composed by such nammAzhwAr, will not get caught in this samsAram which perpetuates birth in it, which destroys the true nature of AthmA and which presses like a quagmire.


nallAr navil – all the people in the world keep chanting “AzhwAr, AzhwAr” just like the people in ayOdhyA kept reciting “rAma rAma” as mentioned in SrI rAmAyaNam yudhdha kANdam 128-103 “rAmO rAmO rAma:” (while SrI rAma ruled the kingdom, the people kept reciting rAma, rAma, rAma). SrI rAmAyaNam bAla kANdam 1-16 says “sarvadhA abhigatha: sadhbi:” (always accessible to purely good people) – just as ocean is attained by rivers, SrI rAma is attained by sages. When SrI rAma sits in a place to take rest after completing his chores, sages, who keep thinking of others’ good, would reach him. Their purpose is not to remove any shortcoming in SrI rAma – do rivers reach ocean in order to fill it up, which has been filled up already? No, they need to sustain themselves – in the same way, these sages attain SrI rAma in order to get rid of their shortcomings.

thirumAl . . . – while the people surround him, chanting his name, AzhwAr keeps praising the followers of sarvESvaran just as he had said in thiruvAimozhi 3-7-1 “payilum thiruvudaiyAr yavarElum avar kaNdIr emmai ALum paramar” (those who carry out kainkaryam permanently are my lords)

AzhwAr has as his identity the garland, also known as divine feet of SrIvaishNavas, who have the qualification to recite the divine names of SrIya:pathi (consort of SrI mahAlakshmi).

viNNappam seydha – in the first pAsuram of this prabandham AzhwAr had said “adiyEn seyyum viNNappamE” (this is my appeal) and completed the prabandham with viNNappam (the prabandham composed by him).

sollAr thodaiyal – this [prabandham] need not be cherished just because it has been composed by a well-wisher. This should be cherished for the sweetness observed in it, just as it has been said of SrI rAmAyaNam in bAla kANdam 4-8 “pAtyE gEyE cha mathuram” (it is melodious to read and sing).

innURum – unlike mahAbhAratham which is very expansive or praNavam which is very brief, this prabandham has only hundred pAsurams, indicating knowledge.

vallAr azhundhAr – first he speaks about the benefit; in what will they not get trapped?

piRappAm pollA – the cruel cycle of births. The Athmavasthu (sentient being) is full of knowledge and full of joy. He is sarvESvaran’s servitor. Such Athma comes to samsAram to be in association with achith vasthu (insentient entities) which is incongruent with it.

aruvinai – karma (effect of past deeds, both good and bad) which follows the AthmA, grows continuously and locks up the AthmA in samsAram.

mAya – creating taste and scent in samsAram

van sERu – if one falls into this quagmire, the stain made cannot be removed easily.

aLLal – if one sets foot on it, it will pull down the person further

poynnilam – this samsAram does not have a floor. If one stands atop it, the legs will keep exploring below further, searching for firm footing. Those who recite this prabandham will not get caught in such samsAram.

This brings us to the end of this prabandham.

periya pirAtti samEdha periya perumAL thiruvadigaLE SaraNam

nammAzhwAr thiruvadigaLE SaraNam

emperumAnAr thiruvadigaLE SaraNam

periyavAchchAn piLLai thiruvadigaLE SaraNam

jIyar thiruvadigaLE saraNam

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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