Category Archives: mUnRAm thiruvandhAdhi

mUnRAm thiruvandhAdhi – 7 – kazhal thozhudhum

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Losing out to the beauty of emperumAn, AzhwAr tells his divine mind “come, let us carry out kainkaryam (service) at his divine feet and sustain ourselves”. He tells his divine mind to enjoy the divine beauty of emperumAn when it is in such unlimited way.

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

kazhal thozhudhum vA nenjE kArkkadal nIr vElai
pozhil aLandha puLLUrdhich chelvan ezhil aLandhangu
eNNaRkariyAnai epporutkum sEyAnai
naNNaRkariyAnai nAm

Word by Word Meanings

nenjE – Oh mind!
kAr kadal nIr – having black coloured sea-water
vElai – having shore
pozhil – earth
aLandha – one who measured [the earth]
puL Urdhi – one who has garuda as his vehicle
selvan – one who has SrIdhEvi (SrI mahAlakshmi), the goddess of wealth [as his consort]
ezhil aLandhu eNNarkariyAnai – one whose boundary for beauty cannot even be thought of
epporutkum sEyAnai – one who is far away from any object
naNNaRku ariyAnai – emperumAn, who cannot be approached (by anyone through his/her efforts)
kazhal – divine feet
nAm thozhudhum – let us worship
vA – you also  agree and come

vyAkyanam

kazhal thozhudhum vA nenjE – Oh heart! Let us worship the divine feet of emperumAn. You also join with me.

kAr kadal nIr vElaip pozhil aLandhaemperumAn had measured the world which has the shore of black coloured ocean. He had measured the world even when we had not requested him.  Hence the only work for us is to worship him; he will take care of the activities which are to be performed later.

puL Urdhich chelvan – he has garuda as his vehicle and has unlimited wealth.

ezhil aLandhu angu eNNaRku ariyAnai – he is such that no one can analyse and estimate his beauty. He cannot be estimated through the mind either.

epporutkum sEyAnai – he is far removed from (at a higher plane than) all the objects . He is greater than all, irrespective of whether they are elders or youngsters. Alternatively he is greater than all objects.”adhruSya:” (cannot be seen). emperumAn has said in SrI bhagavath gIthA 7-25nAham prakASa: sarvasya yOgamAyAsamAvrutha: mUdO’yam nAbhijAnAthi lOkO mAmajamavyayam” (since I am hidden by the illusion of having taken a human form, I do not appear to be radiant (like paramAthmA) to many people in the world. The worldly people, due to their ignorance, do not analyse and know that I am the causative factor without any birth due to karma (past deeds) or that I am the supreme being without any fault). He is impossible to attain for anyone through self-efforts.

nAm kazhal thozhudhum vA nenjE – he tells his heart to come with him and worship emperumAn’s divine feet as emperumAn has displayed himself on his own volition.

We shall take up the 8th pAsuram next.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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mUnRAm thiruvandhAdhi – 6 – azhaganRE AzhiyARku

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avathArikai

In this pAsuram, AzhwAr enjoys the beauty of emperumAn as mentioned in the previous pAsuram and his divine activities.

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

azhaganRE AzhiyARku Azhi nIr vaNNam
azhaganRE aNdam kadaththal azhaganRE
angai nIrERRARku alarmElOn kAl kazhuva
gangai nIr kAnRa kazhal

Word by Word Meanings

AzhiyARku – for the supreme being who is holding the divine disc
Azhi nIr vaNNam – the complexion of ocean
azhagu anRE – is it not beauty personified!
aNdam kadaththal – the activity of measuring the worlds
azhagu anRE – is it not beauty personified!
am kai – in the beautiful hand
nIr ERRARku – for emperumAn who accepted water [from mahAbali as symbolic of accepting alms]
alar mElOn – brahmA, who  is atop lotus
kAl kazhuva – when he washed the divine feet

(at that time)
gangai nIr – the pure water of gangA
kAnRa – one which exhibited
kazhal – that divine foot
azhagu anRE – is it not beauty personified!

vyAkyanam

azhaganRE AzhiyARku Azhi nIr vaNNam – For emperumAn, is it only the complexion to have the colour of ocean? Is it not beauty also! For the term AzhiyARku we can consider the meaning as – one who is having the divine disc. Then the meaning will change as – the colour of emperumAn will be contrasting to that of disc. Thus, just like it is for disc, the complexion of emperumAn will also be great. For such a person, is there a need for any other ornament!

azhaganRE aNdam kadaththal – it is not only the complexion, even the activity is beautiful. Did he carry out the difficult to achieve tasks with lot of effort?

azhaganRE – isn’t the activity of measuring all the worlds, beautiful too! Hasn’t nammAzhwAr too mercifully stated in his thiruvAimozhi 2-2-11Eththa Ezhulagum koNda kOlakkUththanaI” (praising emperumAn who measured the worlds beautifully) (kOlakkUththan – one who carries out an activity beautifully).

azhaganRE angai nIr ERRARku – isn’t emperumAn’s posture even as he took the water as symbolic of alms, from mahAbali in his beautiful hands, so beautiful!

angai nIr ERRARku – for one who had all along been only giving to others, taking alms from someone else, as mentioned by ANdAL in nAchchiyAr thirumozhi 11-5 “pollAk kuRaLuruvAyp poRkaiyil nIr ERRu” (taking water in his golden hand, mischievously, as a dwarf) even the hand was described as golden (poRkai).

alarmElOn kAl kazhuva – brahmA washed the divine foot of emperumAn

gangai nIr kAnRa kazhal azhaganRE – are the divine feet only responsible for creating an abundance of gangA water? Were they not beautiful! The divine feet are not only sacred; they are sweet too! AzhwAr says that they are not meant for exhibiting an amazing activity or for manifesting their greatness. Are they not meant for exhibiting beauty!

We shall move on to the 7th pAsuram next.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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mUnRAm thiruvandhAdhi – 5 – adivaNNam thAmarai

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Having mentioned about the way he measured the worlds, AzhwAr loses himself to emperumAn’s beauty and enjoys that beauty. AzhwAr says, “Since emperumAn has become medicine, aiSvaryam and nectar, let me enjoy his beauty” While describing emperumAn’s beauty, recourse is taken to compare with worldly materials more out of bewilderment than any other reason. AzhwAr says that once one thinks of emperumAn’s beauty, it is impossible not to speak; it is also impossibleto speak.

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

adivaNNam thAmarai anRulagam thAyOn
padivanNNam pArkkadal nIr vaNNam mudivaNNam
OrAzhiveyyOn oLiyum ahdhanRE
ArAzhi koNdARkazhagu

Word by Word Meanings

anRu ulagam thAyOn – on that day (when mahAbali poured water on vAmana’s palm), when emperumAn measured all the worlds, his
adi vaNNam – the colour of his divine feet
thAmarai – is reddish like the lotus
padi vaNNam – the colour of his divine form
par kadal nIR vaNNam – is dark like the ocean, surrounding earth
mudi vaNNam – the colour of his crown
Or Azhi veyyon – the colour of sun who travels on a chariot with one wheel and who has harsh rays
oLiyum – radiance (of that emperumAn)
ahdhanRE – is also like that sun
Ar Azhi koNdARku azhagu – the beauty of such emperumAn holding the beautiful divine disc, is like this.

vyAkyanam

adi vaNNam thAmarai – simile for the divine feet is lotus.

anRu ulagam thAyOn padi vaNNam pAr kadal nIr vaNNam – the colour of divine form of emperumAn who measured the worlds, is that of the ocean which surrounds the world. If his complexion were white, one could say that it is like that of pARkadal (the milky ocean). But since his complexion is dark, it is mentioned as pAr kadal nIr vaNNam.

mudi vaNNam OrAzhi veyyOn – the colour of emperumAn’s crown is similar to sun.

OrAzhi veyyOn – this could be construed either as sun who has chariot with single wheel or as sun’s galaxy.

oLiyum ahdhanREemperumAn’s radiance is also like that of sun.

Ar Azhi koNdARku – emperumAn who has such a beauty that if he holds the divine disc in his hand, he doesn’t need any other ornament to be adorned with. Beauty for one who is holding the beautiful disc in his hand. In the same way, we can construe the meanings for adivaNNam thAmarai etc.

We shall take up the 6th pAsuram next.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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mUnRAm thiruvandhAdhi – 4 – marundhum poruLum

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AzhwAr says that it is the protector of all, emperumAn’s divine feet which are to be attained and which help in attaining. In the previous pAsuram, AzhwAr mentioned about how he was protected. In this pAsuram, he is mentioning about protecting everyone.

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

marundhum poruLum amudhamum thAnE
thirundhiya sengaNmAl AngE porundhiyum
ninRulagam uNdumizhndhum nIrERRu mUvadiyAl
anRulagam thAyOnadi

Word by Word Meanings

thirundhiya – with exactness (knowing clearly that he is the supreme being)
sem kaN – having lotus-like divine eyes
mAl – with affection
AngE – in that only activity of protecting the world
ninRu porundhiya – being firmly suited (to that)
ulagam – all the worlds
uNdu – swallowing (so that deluge will not destroy them)
umizhndhu – later, spitting them out
anRu – once, in an earlier time
nIr ERRu – taking water from mahAbali as a symbol of taking alms from him
mU adiyAl ulagam thAyOn – emperumAn who measured all the worlds with his three steps
adi thanE – only his divine feet
marundhum – are like medicine to cure the disease of samsAram (life in this materialistic realm)
poruLum – like wealth, capable of obtaining what is desired
amudhamum – being sweet like nectar

vyAkyanam

marundhum poruLum amudhamum thane – the term marundhu (medicine) refers to its ability to destroy enemies (since medicine cures diseases) , the term poruL refers to the means (wealth) for obtaining the medicine and the term amudham refers to the benefit realised. It is only emperumAn who removes our enemies, gives what we need and allows himself to be enjoyed by us. He removes those which we do not want and gives what we want. Alternatively, since medicine cures the disease and gives strength, the term marundhu refers to the means and the terms poruL and amudham refer to the two states of benefits (i.e. as wealth it is the means for obtaining other needed things and it is enjoyed as the benefit, like gold). vishNu dharmam 72-4 says “amrutham sAdhanam sAdhyam yam paSyanthi manIshiNa:, gyEyAkhyam paramAthmAnam vishNum dhyAyan na sIdhathi ” (one never suffers any sorrow, if he meditates on vishNu, the supreme being, who is seen by wise people as the indestructible means and who is attained). Hasn’t brahmA too mentioned in SrI rAmAyaNam yudhdha kANdam 117-17 “SaraNyam SaraNancha thvAmAhur dhivyA maharshaya:” (the sacred sages state that you are the means and the benefit)! In thrivikrama avathAram (incarnation) since he removed enemies such as namuchi, he is the medicine; since he came as a mendicant, he became the wealth too; since he kept his divine feet on everyone’s head, he became the nectar (benefit) too. Thus, divine feet of emperumAn who measured all the worlds are everything. It is not samiththu pAdhi sAvithri pAdhi (this is an old saying which refers to carrying out a ritual where one keeps a count of the manthra that one recites using samiththu, a type of stick. One should have 1008 sticks and recite the gAyathri manthram 1008 times, without short-changing in either). emperumAn is everything, unlike the above-mentioned saying.

thirundhiya sengaN mAl – he has reddish eyes which reflect that he is the supreme being. Alternatively,

thirundhiya – he is the final goal as well as the means. He is as per his svarUpam (basic nature). Or, if the AthmAs (souls) do not change their ways, he changes his ways to align himself with them. Or, just as AthmAs do not ever correct themselves, emperumAn will always be exact (without any error).

sengaN – he has reddish eyes to reflect his affection for his followers.

mAl – one who is affectionate.

AngE porundhiyum ninRu – instead of feeling ashamed that the consort of mahAlakshmi has come to ask for alms, he stands firmly in the act of taking alms.

porundhiyum – being firm in protecting

ninRu – his divine mind standing firmly in that

ulagam uNdu umizhndhum – protecting the worlds by swallowing them and letting them out in due course

nIReRRu – he took alms as if he is obtaining something which did not belong to him.

nIrERRum – he obtained something which he could not have attained otherwise

mUvadiyAl anRu ulagam thAyOnadi – it is the divine feet of one who measured the three worlds after taking water [from mahAbali as symbol of taking alms] which are medicine, wealth and nectar.

We can also consider uNdu as referring to medicine, umizhndhu as wealth and sengaNmAl as nectar.

We shall take up the 5th pAsuram next.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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mUnRAm thiruvandhAdhi – 3 – manaththuLLAn

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In the previous pAsuram how AzhwAr’s mind gravitated had towards emperumAn was mentioned. In this pAsuram, it is mentioned that emperumAn remains ignorant of others, except AzhwAr.

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

manaththuLLAn mAkadal nIruLLan malarAL
thanaththuLLAn thanduzhAy mArvan sinaththuch
cherunarugach cheRRugandha thEngOdhavaNNan
varunaragam thIrkkum marundhu

Word by Word Meanings

mA kadal nIr uLLAn – one who is resting on the huge thiruppARkadal (milky ocean)
malarAL thanaththu uLLAn – one who is on the bosom of pirAtti (SrI mahAlakshmi)
thaN thuzhAy mArban – one who is donning the cool, thuLasi garland on his chest
serunar – enemies
uga – to be destroyed
sinaththu – through his anger
seRRu – destroying
ugandha – one who was happy
thEngu Odham vaNNan – with the complexion of a full ocean
varu naragam thIrkkum marundhu – sarvESvaran is like the medicine which will cure the disease of the unavoidable samsAram (life in the materialistic realm)
uLLAn – he is living in my heart

vyAkyanam

manaththu uLLAn – the most desired place for emperumAn is AzhwAr’s mind. He made AzhwAr’s mind as his mattress and entered it.

mA kadal nIr uLLAn – this is the place he prepared himself in order to enter AzhwAr’s mind. He reclined in thiruppARkadal in order to protect his followers.

malarAL thanaththu uLLAn – just as he made thiruppARkadal as his resting place, he also considered pirAtti’s bosom as his resting place. Is he not as mentioned in thiruppAvai 20nappinnai kongai mEl vaiththuk kidandha malar mArban” (one who rested on the bosom of nappinnai (nILA dhEvi))! It is nappinnai who helps him to go back to periya pirAtti. We can also consider the verse malarAL thanaththuLLAn to indicate his wealth. From all these it is considered that what periyAzhwAr said in his periyAzhwAr thirumozhi 5-2-10 is apt “aravaththamiLiyinOdum azhagiya pARkadalOdum aravindhappAvaiyum thAnum agampadi vandhu pugundhu ” (emperumAn entered AzhwAr’s heart with his serpent mattress, the milky ocean and his consort).

malarAL thanaththuLLAn – the place where his lifeline is located is pirAtti’s bosom.

thaNduzhAy mArvan – the place where pirAtti’s lifeline is located is emperumAn’s chest. What emperumAn carries out in her bosom, pirAtti carries out with his garland on the divine shoulder. He has such garland on his divine shoulder.

sinaththuch cherunar ugach cheRRu – with his anger, annihilating his enemies; alternatively, we can add the anger to his enemies and consider this verse to mean that he destroys his enemies who are angry. Destroying his enemies like this is an activity to make pirAtti happy. As mentioned in SrI rAmAyaNam AraNya kANdam 30-39 “tham dhrushtvA SathruhanthAram maharshINAm sukhAvaham babhUva hrushtA vaidhEhi bharthAram parishasvajE ” (after seeing SrI rAma who destroyed the enemies and made the great sages happy, sithAp pirAtti realised that she existed; she was very happy and she embraced her husband well), did not sIthA become happy after knowing that the enemies of great sages have been destroyed and embrace her husband!

ugandha – emperumAn was happy that he had destroyed the enemies of his followers.

thEngOdha vaNNan – he has the complexion of the deep ocean. Thus, he has the form which removes his followers’ fatigue. This beauty came about due to his destroying the enemies.

varunaragam – Just as it is mentioned in brahmavaivartham, prakruthi kANdam 26-70 “avaSyamanubhOkthavyam krutham karma SubASubham” (one has to necessarily experience the results of one’s pApa (sinful deeds) and puNya (virtuous deeds)), it is the unavoidable life in this materialistic realm which is termed as naragam (hell).

thIrkkum marundhu – he is the medicine for crossing over this hell which is impossible to cross (otherwise). It is emperumAn’s characteristic to be the vaidhya (physician). Just as one says that such and such person is dark complexioned [his characteristic]. Isn’t our mind the reason for such an entity to enter our mind! Has it not been mentioned in SrI bhagavath gIthA 6-5Athmaiva AthmanO bandhu: Athmaivai ripurAthmana:” (mind is AthmA’s friend; mind is AthmA’s enemy)! He is inside the mind to remove the impending hell. He entered the mind to sever the connection with samsAram.

We shall move on to the 4th pAsuram.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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mUnRAm thiruvandhAdhi – 2 – inRE kazhal kaNdEn

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AzhwAr says that as soon as he saw emperumAn, all his enemies disappeared.

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

inRE kazhal kaNdEn Ezh piRappum yAn aRuththEn
pon thOy varai mArbil pUndhuzhAy anRu
thirukkaNdu koNda thirumAlE unnai
marukkaNdu koNdu en manam

Word by Word Meanings

pon thOy – having golden ornaments
varai – being like a mountain
mArbil – on the divine chest
pUm thuzhAy – having divine thuLasi garland
anRu – during that time when the ocean was churned
thiru – periya pirAttiyAr (SrI mahAlakshmi)
kaNdu kOnda – having been enjoyed
thirumAlE – Oh, the consort of lakshmi!
en manam – my mind
unnai – with you
maruk kaNdu koNdu – being fully united (attained you)

Hence
yAn – adiyEn (the servitor, I)
inRE – today itself
kazhal – your divine feet
kaNdEn – experienced, seeing
Ezh piRappum – all births
aRuththEn – severed (so that they do not follow)

vyAkyanam

inRE kazhal kaNdEn – I saw the divine feet. I severed all my births [in future]. Seeing the divine feet and continuing births will not be congruent. It is not that I had seen the divine feet at one point of time and severed my births at another point. The moment I saw the divine feet, I destroyed my enemy [cycle of births]. It has been mentioned in SrI rAmAyaNam ayOdhyA kANdam 8-4 “dhrushtEnaiva hi na: SOkam apanEshyathi rAghava:” (SrI rAma is one who removes our sorrow by merely looking at us) and “adhya mE hi gathaSOka: ” (my sorrow left me today).

inRE kazhal kaNdEn – I became fully involved in kainkaryam [service to emperumAn].

Ezh piRappum yAn aRuththEn – thus I became one with all hurdles removed. I got to serve emperumAn and I was also rid of samsAram (materialistic realm).

pon thOy varai mArvil – in the divine chest which looks like a mountain dipped in gold

pUndhuzhAy anRu thiruk kaNdu koNda – he stood such that pirAtti saw the garland of thuLasi on his divine shoulder.

anRu thirukkaNdu koNda – on that day when the ocean was churned for getting nectar, SrI mahAlakshmi stepped on to the divine chest of emperumAn as mentioned in SrI vishNu purANam “paSyathAm sarvadhEvAnAm yayau vakshasthalam harE:” (even as the dhEvas were witnessing, (SrI mahAlakshmi) stepped on the divine chest (of emperumAn)). Oh thirumAl (emperumAn) who has such a divine chest!

thirumAlE – this indicates how emperumAn is infatuated with pirAtti.

unnai marukkoNdu koNden manam – even after knowing that emperumAn is being liked by pirAtti, my mind, without stepping back, went ahead and was fully involved with him. Is it that I have the same extent of affection as pirAtti has for him and I saw him? Wasn’t “not shunning him” all that I had! Instead of gaining a benefit from emperumAn and leaving him, my mind stayed with him totally. For those who do not know the relationship between emperumAn and pirAtti, that ignorance is the reason for their fear. For those who know this relationship, that we are not qualified becomes the reason for not leaving him.

We will take up the 3rd pAsuram next.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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mUnRAm thiruvandhAdhi – 1 – thirukkaNdEn

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While AzhwAr had seen everything in the divine form of emperumAn who has all chith (sentient) and achith (insentient) entities as his body, due to overflowing affection, he says that “I have seen this”, “I have seen that” among some of emperumAn’s personal possessions and speaks about that experience in the first pAsuram.

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

thirukkaNdEn ponmEni kaNdEn thigazhum
arukkan aNi nirRamum kaNdEn serukkiLarum
ponnAzhi kaNdEn purisangam kaikkaNdEn
ennAzhi vaNNan pAL inRu

Word by Word Meanings

inRu – now (on the day when the other two mudhal AzhwArs made him see)
en Azhi vaNNan pAl – in (the divine form of) emperumAn who has the complexion of ocean
thiru – periya pirAttiyAr (SrI mahAlakshmi)
kaNdEn – I had the fortune to worship
pon mEni – the beautiful divine form
kaNdEn – I had the fortune to worship
thigazhum – shining
arukkan – like sun
aNi – beautiful
niRamum – resplendent radiance [of the divine form of emperumAn]
kaNdEn – I had the fortune to worship
seru – in the battlefield
kiLarum – bursting out
pon Azhi – beautiful divine disc
kai – in the (right) hand
kaNdEn – I had the fortune to worship
puri sangam – (pAnchajanyam) divine conch curling towards right (in the other divine hand)
kaNdEn – I had the fortune to worship

vyAkyanam

thirukkaNdEn – while everything is contained in saying “I saw emperumAn”, due to excessive involvement, AzhwAr says that “I saw this”, “I saw that” like people who have attained great things.

thirukkaNdEn – I saw pirAtti who is the cause for all wealth. I saw pirAtti who wants those who attain her to realise their natural characteristics. Even when emperumAn was running behind indhra as his younger brother (during his incarnation as upEndhra, also called as vAmana), since indhra did not have the blessings of pirAtti, all his wealth disappeared. Just as pirAtti’s purushakAram (recommendatory role) is required during devotion, even while seeing emperumAn, the first to be seen is only pirAtti. Is it not true of the saying “yathOpAsanam palam” (benefit is proportional to depth of devotion)! As per thathkrathu nyAyam, devotion cannot be something and benefit, something else. Both will be identical. Just as it is mentioned in iraNdAm thiruvandhAdhi 56karumAlaip ponmEni kAttAmun kAttum thirumalai nangaL thiru”, even to have direct dharSan (viewing) of emperumAn, it is pirAtti who carries out purushakAram! Even for gyAnam (knowledge) it is only her purushakAram which is the reason, as mentioned in mudhal thiruvandhAdhi 67thAmariyAL kELvan oruvanaiyE nOkkum uNarvu” (knowledge will attain only emperumAn who is the consort of mahAlakshmi who dwells on lotus).

thirukkaNdEn  – I saw pirAtti who is the identity for establishing emperumAn. One can see sun only after seeing its rays! Isn’t pirAtti the resplendent rays for emperumAn, the sun! In SrI rAmAyaNam yudhdha kANdam 21-16 sIthA says “ananyA rAghavENAham bhAskarENa prabhA yathA” (just as rays do not leave sun, I do not leave SrI rAma) and in 121-15 SrI rAma says “ananyAhi mayA sIthA bhAskarENa prabhA yathA” (just as rays do not leave sun, sIthA does not leave me)!

ponmEni kaNdEn – I saw the complexion of emperumAn, after seeing which even pirAtti will be greatly involved. Hasn’t it been mentioned in manu smrithi 12-122 “rukmAbham svapnadhI gamyam” (he has a golden hue complexion; he can be discerned through dream-like vision of the mind)! The greatness of his divine form is mentioned.

thigazhum arukkan aNi niRamum kaNdEn – due to the union of perumAL and pirAtti, I saw a hue like that of nascent sun. AzhwAr saying this is similar to what has been mentioned in SrI rAmAyaNam AraNya kANdam 38-15 “SObayan dhaNdakAraNyam dhIpthEna svEna thEjasA adhruSyatha thathO rAmO bAlachandra ivOdhitha:” (decorating the forests of dhaNdakAraNyam with his radiance, SrI rAma was seen like a nascent sun which had just then arisen). The hues of perumAL and pirAtti appear mixed together.

thigazhum arukkan aNi niRamum kaNdEn serukkiLarum ponnAzhi kaNdEn –  thiruvAzhi (divine disc), looking at the union of perumAL and pirAtti gets fearful for their safety, where he should not get fearful and gets ready to burst out on those who see their union [with evil eyes].

ponnAzhi – the divine disc has such a beauty that people will have affection for him. I saw the divine disc on which one should sing praise similar to how periyAzhwAr had sung in thiruppallANdu 2vadivAr sOdhi valaththuRaiyum sudarAzhiyum pallANdu

puri sangam kaikkaNdEn – unlike thivAzhi AzhwAn (divine disc), the divine conch will not burst out fiercely on enemies, but will keep looking all over the place for enemies so that it could pounce on them. Just as SrI guhapperumAL (the boatman in SrI rAmAyaNam) cast doubts on iLaiyaperumAL (lakshmaNa) as he was the brother of bharatha who had sent SrI rAma to the forest, pAnchajanyam would doubt the divine disc also. I saw such conch in the divine hand of emperumAn. Or, we could also consider conch as being humble, like iLaiyaperumAl, as mentioned in SrI rAmAyaNam ayOdhyA kANdam 4-42 “prAgyalim prahvamAsInam” (one who stood humbly with joined palms).

en Azhi vaNNan pAl inRu – towards emperumAn who is like my wealth, who has a complexion like that of ocean which removes one’s fatigue, one who cannot be estimated.

en Azhi vaNNan – emperumAn is just like AzhwAr’s ocean. Aren’t pirAtti, divine conch and rubies present in the ocean! In the same way, aren’t they with emperumAn too! thirumangai AzhwAr also has mercifully mentioned in his periya thirumozhi 2-8-5 “mAmaNiyum malarmEl mangaiyum sangamum thanguginRa alaikadal pOnRivar” (emperumAn is like the ocean which has the great gems, pirAtti who resides on a flower and conch).

inRu – today, when emperumAn decided to show himself to AzhwAr. We can also construe this as AzhwAr saying that he got to see emperumAn today with the recommendatory role played by pirAtti.

We shall take up the 2nd pAsuram next.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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mUnRAm thiruvandhAdhi – pravESam (Introduction)

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<< thaniyan

prabandham avathArikai (Introduction for the prabandham)

pEyAzhwAr says that due to the grace of poygai AzhwAr and bhUdhaththAzhwAr, he was able to see fully emperumAn, who is the consort of thirumagaL (SrI mahAlakshmi), as if he had seen an ocean of rubies. Since this prabandham (collection of 100 verses) speaks after seeing emperumAn, without any order, this thiruvandhAdhi does not come easily for anyone. Isn’t it for this reason that it is said that the one who mercifully gave this thiruvandhAdhi is pEyAzhwAr! kulaSEkara AzhwAr has mercifully mentioned in his perumAL thirumozhi 3-8 “pEyarE enakku yAvarum yAnumOr pEyanE ….. pEyanAyozhindhEn emperumAnukkE” (to me, all the people of this world appear like manmen. To the people of this world, I too am a mad man. What is the point in talking about this matter? I am calling out to emperumAn by his divine names and to such emperumAn too I became a madman). The first thiruvandhAdhi came about from bhakthi (devotion) which was showered by emperumAn. In the second thiruvandhAdhi, since it has been divinely mentioned in pAsuram 100 “enRan aLavanRAl yAnudaiya bhakthi” (the affection that I have for you cannot be retained within me) it transformed into parabhakthi. After that parabhakthi, sighting emperumAn directly has been mentioned. pEyAzhwAr says that since emperumAn showed himself up he was able to see him. The first AzhwAr (poygai AzhwAr) says that emperumAn has both nithya vibhUthi (spiritualistic realm) and leelA vibhUthi (materialistic realm). The second AzhwAr (bhUdhaththAzhwAr) says that the divine name of that emperumAn is nArAyaNa. [The third AzhwAr] pEyAzhwAr says that one has to add the word SrI to that divine name (SrIman nArAyaNa). The first thiruvandhAdhi speaks about “vaiyam thagaLiyA” which is gyAnam (knowledge); i.e. the knowledge that emperumAn is the lord and we are his servitors. The second thiruvandhAdhi speaks about “anbE thagaLiyA” which is parabhakthi which comes about due to maturing of the knowledge seen earlier. The third thiruvandhAdhi speaks about sAkshAthkAram (seeing directly) which is the next stage of parabhakthi. poygai AzhwAr spoke about the nature of emperumAn. bhUdhaththAzhwAr spoke about the nature of jIvAthmA. pEyAzhwAr speaks about the nature of the entity which is the base for both (pirAtti’s?). When emperumAn churned the ocean, dhEvas who were merely spectators obtained nectar. This AzhwAr says that in the same way, he was able to have dharSan (vision) of emperumAn due to the grace of the first two AzhwArs.

We shall move on to the first pAsuram next.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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mUnRAm thiruvandhAdhi – thaniyan

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sIrArum mAdath thirukkOvalUr adhanuL
kArAr karumugilaik kANappukku orAth
thirukkaNdEn enRuraiththa sIrAn kazhalE
uraikkaNdAy nenjE ugandhu

Word by Word Meaning

nenjE – Oh my heart!
sIr Arum mAdam – having beautiful mansions
thirukkOvalUr adhanuL – in a corridor inside thirukkOvalUr (a divine abode)
kAr Ar karumugilai – emperumAn who has the complexion of clouds in the rainy season
kANap pukku – entering, to worship
OrA – meditating with the help of mind, the inner eye
thirukkaNdEn enRu uraiththa – one who mercifully gave 100 pAsurams (hymns) starting with the pAsuram thirukkaNdEn
sIrAn – the great pEyAzhwAr’s
kazhalE – the divine feet
ugandhu urai – speak joyously

vyAkyAnam

This thaniyan was mercifully given by kurugaik kAvalappan, one of the disciples of SrIman nAthamunigaL (first AchAryar in our sampradhAyam after nammAzhwAr) and who learnt bhakthi yOgam from SrIman nAthamunigaL.

sIrArum mAdath thirukkOvalUr – the dhivya dhESam (divine abode) thirukkOvalUr which is full of divine wealth and having mansions fit for the vaidhikas (those who follow vEdhas, the sacred texts) who practice vEdhams.

adhanuL – inside that town, in a corridor of mrigaNdu maharishi. Didn’t emperumAn come into this corridor with his retinue, since inside the hut was rishi, who follows other means to attain emperumAn and outside the hut are the samsAris who are only interested in other benefits! Only in the corridor were the three AzhwArs present, who were neither followers of other means nor interested in other benefits and emperumAn wanted to be with them.

adhanuL kANappukku – inside the divine abode (town) and to see a distinguished entity [emperumAn] one needed brightness. Was the brightness available? Yes, through the pAsurams of the first two AzhwArs (veyya kadhirOn viLakkAga  and nanburugi gyAnachchudar viLakku ERRinEn) [sun became the powerful light and I lit the powerful light of paragyAnam total devotion to emperumAn, respectively], both the darkness outside and the darkness inside (mind) were removed.

Who was the entity to be seen?

kArAr karumugilaik kANap pukku  – to see emperumAn who has the complexion of the dark clouds which come during rainy season.

thirukkOvalUr adhanuL kArAr karumugil – Just as it has been mentioned in thirunedundhANdagam 17 “kuRungudiyuL mugil” (the cloud in thirukkuRungudi), this was the cloud in thiruukOvalUr, raining waters of mercy.

OrA – in order to get that experience in the divine mind with total clarity, AzhwAr was meditating.

There is another interpretation to this: thirukkOvalUr adhanuL kArAr karumugilaik kANap pukkuin order to see the dark clouds in thirukkOvalUr, due to fear of the clouds, standing inside a corridor; OrA – analysing as to who is jostling with us [with the three AzhwArs] during this time of heavy rains.

thirukkaNdEn enRu uraiththa – the one who, with the joy of that experience of having seen emperumAn with his inner eye (mind), and who spoke about it so that even people like us who came much later can get uplifted with his pAsuram “thirukkaNdEn

thirukkaNdEn – the other two AzhwArs lit lamps. Consequently, this AzhwAr had dharSan. gyAna (knowledge) and bhakthi (devotion) were the status of the first two AzhwArs and sAkshAthkAram (seeing) is the status of this AzhwAr.

sIrAn kazhalE – the divine feet of pEyAzhwAr who experienced the divine emperumAn through his prabandham “thirukkaNdEn

uraikkaNdAy nenjE ugandhu – just as AzhwAr spoke about his experience through his faculty of speech, you also speak about the divine feet of AzhwAr which you saw, with your faculty of speech.

nenjE – Oh heart who is so humble towards matters relating to emperumAn and his followers!

ugandhu urai – since it is a matter relating to a bhAgavatha (follower of emperumAn) which is greater than the matter relating to bhagavAn himself, speak joyously.

In this thaniyan, it has been stated that the divine feet of those who saw the divine emperumAn himself and who spoke about their experience through their pAsurams are the ones which should be constantly meditated upon.

We shall move on to the pravESam for this prabandham next.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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mUnRAm thiruvandhAdhi

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pEyAzhwAr, the third among the mudhalAzhwArgaL (first 3 AzhwArs namely poygai AzhwAr, bhUthaththAzhwAr and pEyAzhwAr) divined a beautiful prabandham named mUnRAm thiruvandhAdhi. This is part of the iyaRpA section of the dhivya prabandham. iyaRpA is generally recited during puRappAdu (ceremonial procession of uthsava deity of emperumAn).

With this introduction, we will proceed with the translation for mUnRAm thiuvandhAdhi. The commentary for this prabandham has been written by nampiLLai and by periyavAchchAn piLLai (which has been explained by appiLLai, one of the ashtadhik gajangaLs of maNavALa mAmunigaL).

periyavAchchAn piLLai (sEnganUr) – nampiLLai (thiruvallikkENi)

Translation by krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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