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upadhESa raththina mAlai – 36

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pAsuram 36

theruLuRRa AzhvArgaL seermai aRivArAr
aruLichcheyalai aRivArAr – aruL peRRa
nAthamuni mudhalAm nam thEsikarai allAl
pEthai manamE uNdO pEsu.                                           36


Word by word meaning

aRivAr Ar – Who knows
seermai – the greatness of
theruL uRRa – who have divine knowledge?
aRivAr Ar – Who knows
aruLichcheyalai – the greatness of dhivya prabandhams that they divined?
allAl – – Except
nam – our
nAthamuni mudhalAm – starting from SrIman nAthamunigAL
aruL peRRa – who got the divine grace of AzhvArs,
pEthai manamE – Oh the ignorant mind
pEsu – you think through and say, (whether)
uNdO – whether there can be anyone else (who know the greatness of AzhvArs and AchAryas).


In the previous pAsuram as he divined that those who do not know the greatness of distinguished pramANams (dhivya prabandhams), and its authors (AzhvArs) are to be given up, it is established that only those who know the greatness of these are the only ones to be regarded.

So when asked – who are those that are to be regarded, he (maNavALa mAmunigaL) replied – is there anybody else – it is our nAthamunigAL and other AchAryas.

perumal_koil_rappaththu_uthsavam_2015_nammazhvar_madhurakavi_azhvar_nathamunigal_DSC_0691aruL peRRa nAthamunigaL with aruL mARan (nammAzhvar) – (dhEvap)perumAL kOyil

Ones in the previous pAsuram and the ones in this pAsuram are like those who abuse and praise respectively.

theruL uRRa AzhvArgaL seermai aRivAr Ar – Since they are same in getting divined the unblemished knowledge (mayarvaRa mathi nalam (thiruvAimozhi 1.1.1)), being ‘theruL uRRa AzhvArgaL’ (AzhvArs having divine knowledge) is being their identity.

Nature of AzhvArs

– As said in ‘gyAnAnandha mayasthvAthmASEshOhi paramAthmana: [SrImath bhAgavatham]’ (AthmA is of knowledge and bliss (gyAnAnandham) and servant of paramAthmA),

– by His grace got the state as said in ‘uNarvum uyirum udambum maRRu ulappinavum pazhudhEyAm [thiruvAimozi 8.8.3]’ (knowledge that captures information, life, and body)

– have understood the apex of truth (thathva yAthAthmyam) as said in ‘uNarvenum perum padham therindhu [periya thirumozhi 1.1.1]’ (took a step in to the big state that is gyAnam (knowledge)), and ‘meymmaiyai miga uNarndhu [thirumAlai – 37]’ (got knowledge of Athma svarUpam as is), and ‘thAmaraiyAL kELvan oruvanaiyE nOkkum uNarvu [mudhal thiruvanthAdhi – 67]’ (the gyAnam (knowledge) would only surrender to the husband of – thAyAr who was born in the beautiful lotus flower), and ‘uNarndha mey gyAniyar [rAmAnusa nURRanthAdhi – 60]’ (the assembly (gOshti) of learned gyAnis of truth), and ‘gyAninas thathvadharSina: [SrI bhagavath gIthA – 4.34]’ (gyAnis who saw in their mind the svarUpam of AthmA),

– and due to that being saviour (thArakar) for Isvaran, and being the best of gyAnis (learned ones), as said in ‘gyAnIthvAthmaiva mE matham [SrI bhagavath gIthA – 7.18]’ (In case of gyAni he is the life itself of me), and ‘aRivAr uyir AnAi [thiruvAimozhi – 6.9.8]’ (Oh You having gyAnis as your AthmA!),

– while others are after artha (objects/wealth), kAma (desires), and having ignorance/in the dark, and live around like mad/drunk, these (AzhvArs) do not have any trace of darkness (in mind) as said in ‘maruL il … vaN satakOpan [thiruvAimozhi 2.10.11]’, and by that strength search for the bright mOksham, and get to SrIvaikuNtam. In AzhvArs’ case aren’t they full of knowledge about the five things that one should know (artha panchakam).

theruL uRRa – is – being rooted in that (the aforementioned).

In this way they are being like ‘nAttArOdu iyalvu ozhindhu nAraNanai nANNi [thiruvAimozhi 10.6.2](gave up interaction with the people and got SrIman nArAyaNan).

seermai – is – Compared to those who have got the knowledge of AthmA, AzhvArs are better like the difference between an atom and a mountain (parvatha paramANuvOttai vAsi), and having the greatness of having distinguished birth/life, activities (vruththam), and knowledge.

That is, the greatness explained in ‘AzhvArgaL ERRam [updhESa raththina mAlai – 34]’.

seermai – greatness/glory.

In the vyAkyAnam of ‘thirumanthraththinudaiya seermaikkup pOrumpadi [mumkshuppadi – 3]’, it was divined as ‘gauravam’ (dignity).

nAyanar (azhagiya maNavALap perumAL nAyanAr) also divined ‘idhukku mUlam … patta pOdhu ezhu pOdhu aRiyAdhirundha prabhAvam [AchArya hrudhayam – 93](describes about the greatness of AzhvAr).

AzhvArs’ greatness is as said in ‘viNNuLArilum seeriyar [thiruviruththam – 79]’ ((those who are always worshipping emperumAn) are greater than those in the other worlds), and ‘pErALan pErOdhum periyOr [periya thirumozhi 7.4.4]’ (mahAthmAs who recite the divine names of the One having greatness) , and ‘mikka seerth thoNdar [periya thirumozhi 11.1.9]’ (SrIvaishNavas who are ananyaprayOjanars (not expecting any other benefit from him)).

Or, considering the phrase ‘theruLuRRa AzhvArgaL seermai’ as being theruLuRRa is their seermai (being given divine knowledge is their greatness).

He (maNavALa mAmunigaL) is saying that except those whom he is going to list, who would know the greatness of the aforementioned.

AzhvArgaL seermai aRivAr Ar – Are those who do not by habit distinguish between dhEham (body / prakruthi) and AthmA, going to go to the level of those who have understood the glory of their (AzhvArs’) divine knowledge, in order to know their (AzhvArs’) greatness?

aRivAr Ar – Or are the unfavorable (prathikUlar) who think that dhEham is Athma, going to be able to know the greatness of AzhvArs who are favourable (anukUlar).

So, he is saying ‘aRivArAr’ sounding like it is rare (to find who know the greatness).

Furthermore, who would know the greatness of the prabandhams that are authored by the AzhvArs which convey the meaning of prapaththi?

aruLichcheyalai aRivAr Ar – Who would understand the greatness of its meanings and welcome and inculcate their divine verses that are dhivya prabandhams?

The word ‘seermai’ (greatness) is to be applied to this phrase also from previous phrase – it was divined as ‘AzhvArgaL ERRam aruLich cheyal ERRam [upadhESa raththina mAlai – 34]only isn’t it (thus greatness is applicable to both). When understanding the greatness of prabandham phrases like ‘theruL koLLach chonna Or Ayiraththu [thiruvAimozhi 2.10.11]’ (~ among the one thousand pAsurams said with divine knowledge), and such, it would imply that AzhvArs have been graced, isn’t it?

Would those who attend to pleasuring words based on their svAthanthriyam (feeling independent from emperumAn), celebrate the dhivya prabandhams of limitless enjoyment by understanding that the prabandhams are part of gaining their svarUpam (true nature)?

The limitless enjoyment is as said like in ‘pAlOdu amudhu enRa Ayiram [thiruvAimozhi 8.6.11]’ (~ among the one thousand pAsurams that are enjoyable like the mix of milk and food), and ‘thoNdarkku amudhu [thiruvAimozhi 9.9.10]’ ((said this thiruvAimozhi) as nectar for devotees) , and ‘sencholAl eduththa dheiva nanmAlai [periya thirumozhi 1.1.10]’ (divine garland made of beautiful words).

It is part of gaining svarUpam is as said like in ‘paththarAgak kUdum payilumin [thiruvAimozhi 3.6.11]’ (can become devotees so practice (this decad of thiruvAimozhi)), and ‘uriya thoNdar Akkum [thiruvAimozhi 6.9.11]’ ((those who learn this decad) it would make them ananyArha SEshabhUthar (subservient to Him only)).

In these, maNavALa mAmunigaL understands the meaning of AzhvArs, and explain to us.

Furthermore, he is saying those who understand its greatness are; (of dhivya prabandhams) :

aruL peRRa nAthamuni mudhalA(m) nam thEsikarai allAlThey are – starting from nAthamuni who got the grace of ‘aruL mARan’, they are in the seat of AchAryan, and enriching the dhivya prabandhams with their passion – they are: the AchAryas shown in ‘nAtham pankajanEthradhEvAdhipAth [bhagavath vishayam thaniyans](nAthamunigaL uyyakkOndAr … dhEvarAjar (nAlUrAchchAn piLLai)).

((up to) nam dhEsikar) – His (maNavALa mAmunigaL’s) dhEsikar (AchAryan) is thirumalai AzhvAr (thiruvAimozhip piLLai), as said in ‘dhEvap perumAL kaik koNdaruLum thirumalai AzhvAr’ (thirumalai AzhvAr who is graced by dhEvap perumAL).

He (maNavALa mAmunigaL) is saying ‘nam’ dhEsikar due to his state of devotion (towards his AchAryan / AchAryas).


aruL peRRa nAthamuni – aruL – grace; nAthamunigaL got the grace of AzhvAr (nammAzhvAr), as well as the grace of mannanAr (emperumAn at kAttumannAr kOyil where he performed kainkaryam).

Only those who are the targets of grace of bhagavath and bhAgavathas would understand the greatness of AzhvArs and the greatness of dhivya prabandhams and live, isn’t it? Is it possible for others to understand?

pEdhai manamE uNdO pEsu – Oh young mind! Is there anyone other than these able ones? Try to say and see if possible. There is no such meaning. So, he says no one occurs to the mind. By this, it says that what cannot be known with own efforts, would be known without any effort for those who are graced (by emperumAn and His devotees).

– – – – – – – – – –

Translation: raghurAm SrInivAsa dhAsan

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upadhESa raththina mAlai – 35

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pAsuram 35

AzhvArgaLaiyum aruLichcheyalgaLaiyum
thAzhvA ninaippavargaL thAm naragil – veezhvArgaL
enRu ninaiththu nenjE eppozhudum nee avar pAl
chenRu aNugak kUsith thiri.                                                           35


Word by word meaning

nenjE – Oh the mind!
nee – you
enRu ninaiththu – think that
ninaippavargaL thAm – those who consider
AzhvArgaLaiyum – the ten AzhvArs and
aruLichcheyalgaLaiyum – the dhivya prabandhams that they divined
thAzhvA – as lowly,
veezhvArgaL – would definitely fall
naragil – in hell,
thiri – (and so) spend your life (move around)
kUsi – feeling ashamed
eppozhudhum – at all times
chenRu – to go
aNuga – and reach
avar pAl – such people.


Earlier, as he (maNavALa mAmunigaL) divined ‘AzhvArgaL ERRam aruLichcheyal ERRam thAzhvu AdhuminRi avai thAm vaLarththOr [upadhESa raththina mAlai – 34], instead of being one who enriches them and their dhivyaprabandhams, they are not only not doing that, due to their lowly mind they insult, and so will fall. So they are to be given up, he says to his mind, starting with AzhvArgaLaiyum aruLichcheyalgaLaiyum’.

mamunigal-vanamamalai-closeupmaNavALa mAmunigaLvAnamAmalai

AzhvArgaL – they are – ‘nimagnarai uyarththath thAzha [AchArya hrudhayam – 84] (extend themselves to uplift the downtrodden (regarding SrIvaishNavam));

they incarnated in all types of births as said in ‘uyir aLippAn enninRa yOniyumAyp piRandhAi [thiruviruththam – 1]’ (You (emperumAn) incarnated as different births (to protect all beings)). Same is said in ‘yOginassarvyOnishu [guruparamparA prabhAvam part 166]’ (yOgis are born in glorious ways, in all yOnis (classes)). It was divined ‘kulam thAngu sAdhigaL nAlilum [thiruvAimozhi 3.7.9](~ in all the four classes of births).

aruLichcheyal – they are – due to the divine desire (sankalpam) of emperumAn, for everyone to reach goal, in easy thamizh language that is easy for everyone like ‘sAikaragam’ (a vessel with a pout?) , as said in ‘paNNiya thamizh mAlai [thiruvAimozhi 2.7.13]’ (~garland made of thamizh poetry), it is the dhivya prabandhams that incarnated through AzhvArs, and they explain about sarvEsvaran – who is simple to approach for everyone in the form of archai (statue) in all dhivya dhEsams, having unlimited innumerable auspicious qualities, and can be followed by all sentient,

and the dhivya prabandhams can be said as ‘sen thamizh vEdham’, that is, dhrAvida vEdha and its parts, that are called dhivya prabandhams.

Thinking of them as lowly (thAzhvA ninaippavar) is –

being not clear about the (aforementioned) greatness, and being mean by thinking that it is lowly based on the type of birth or type of language, that is they are like ‘mAnasair anthyajAthithAm [manu smruthi 12.9]’ (born in lowest birth due to offences committed by mind).

dhravida bhAshA nirUpaNasamam inbamAriyil ArAichchiyum [AchArya hrudhayam – 75] is how they were divined as equivalent blemishes (of such people).

If they are thinking about it (lowly) in your mind and not saying out such that others know their thoughts, then still, as said in ‘unnaich chindhaiyinAl igazhndha [thiruvAimozhi 2.6.6]’ ((hiraNyan) who insulted you in his mind), it would end up being a big evil.

ninaippavargaL thAm – with mind that is suitable for kindness (irakkam), the ones who have the audacity to use such mind to earn punishment for being unkind – such people would –

naragil veezhvArgaL enRu (fall in hell); think that – since such people are the target of what is said in ‘na kshamAmi [varAha purANam] (would not tolerate (those who insult my devotees)), so they would be subject to ‘kshipAmi [SrI bhagavath gIthA – 16.19]’ ((I will) push them (into asura births)), and will fall into the types of hell like rauravam.

nenjE eppozhudum – Oh mind which is having significant devotion towards AzhvArs and dhivya prabandhams that they divined!

At all times –

nee avar pAl chenRu aNugak kUsith thiri – You who is happy knowing about the greatness of our lords, be afraid to go and reach those who create disaster for themselves by offending those who find the way for you to get true life (ujjeevanam).

Since it is a disaster to befriend those who destroy svarUpam (true nature), be afraid to approach them and connect with them.

You have been with those who enrich your svarUpam (true nature), understand the nature of these other people and stay away from them thinking that their friendship is unbearable.

If asking how to know them – as said in ‘thathAhi viparIthA thE budhdhir AchAra varjithA [SrI rAmAyaNam sundhara kANdam 21.10]’ (because your mental attitude (aRivu) is without virtue and is upside down (not in a good state)), by their bad AchAram recognize their bad mind, and if you see them be afraid like when seeing a serpent, fire, etc. These would lead to destruction of our body; those people would lead to destruction of our svarUpam (true nature).

By this it is clear that – like saying ‘AnukUlyasya sangkalpa: [SrI vishNu purANam – 1.14.3]’ (vowing to be a good person), it is also required to say ‘prAthikUlyasya varjana [SrI vishNu purANam – 1.14.3 / ahirbudhya samhithai 37.28 ?]’ (avoid those that are adverse (to that vow)).

It was divined (by maNavALa mAmunigaL) –  ‘vyAkkiyaigaL uLLadhellAm vaiyam aRiyap pagarvOm vAyndhu [upadhESa raththina mAlai – 34], isn’t it? { that is, this helps us reach the aforementioned goodness ?}

– – – – – – – – – –

Translation: raghurAm SrInivAsa dhAsan

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upadhESa raththina mAlai – 34

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pAsuram 34

AzhvArgaL ERRam aruLichcheyal ERRam
thAzhvAdhum inRi avai thAm vaLarththOr – Ezh pArum
uyya avargaL sey(dha) vyAkkiyaigaL uLLadhellAm
vaiyam aRiyap pagarvOm vAyndhu                                                   34


Word by word meaning

ERRam – Greatness of
ERRam – (and) greatness of
aruLichcheyaldhivya prabandhams they divined,
vaLarththOrpUrvAchAryas (preceptors) who nurtured
avai thAm – them to be
inRi – without
Adhu – any
thAzhvu – shortcomings,
avargaL – (and what) those pUrvAchAryas (preceptors)
sey(dha) – divined
vyAkkiyaigaL – as vyAkyAnams (books of commentaries/meanings)
Ezh pArum – for all the seven worlds
uyya – to get the true goal,
pagarvOm – I shall say about
uLLadhu ellAm – all of them
vAyndhu – in appropriate ways (porundhumpadi)
vaiyam – for the people of the earth
aRiya – to learn about.


Earlier he (maNavALa mAmunigaL) had stood divining elaborately about the order of incarnation of AzhvArs, etc., as he mentioned in ‘AzhvArgaL vAzhi aruLichcheyal vAzhi [upadhEsa raththina mAlai – 3], and ‘anthamizhAl naR kalaigaL Ayndhu uraiththa AzhvArgaL [upadhEsa raththina mAlai – 5].

Going forward, as he divined in the other part of that pAsuram as ‘thAzhvAdhum il kuravar thAm vAzhi, Ezh pArum uyya avargaL uraiththavaigaL thAm vAzhi [upadhEsa raththina mAlai – 3], he is now elaborately discussing about that part (of pAsuram 3). That is, he is saying that he shall announce about the greatness of texts of meanings of aruLichcheyal (dhivya prabandhams) which the preceptors (AchAryas) provided us for the world to reach the true goal (uyvukkAga), starting it with ‘AzhvArgaL ERRam’.

ERRam (greatness) for them is – unlike those like rishis who gained knowledge with their own efforts,

they (AzhwArs) have the greatness of getting ‘mayarvaRa mathi nalam [thiruvAimozhi 1.1.1]’ (unblemished knowledge), due to causeless mercy of emperumAn, and

instead of thinking ‘let me get the goal (mOksham) when ever it happens later’ and so having a sight in worldly affairs, they were considering as life support, nourishment, and enjoyment all as emperumAn only,

(as they sang in various prabandhams like) ‘ellAm kaNNan [thiruvAimozhi 6.7.1]’ (~ everything is kaNNan (for me)), and ‘yAvaiyum thirumAl thirunAmangaLE kUvi [thiruvAimozhi 6.7.3] (drawing all enjoyments from calling the divine names of emperumAn), and ‘uNdaRiyAL uRakkam pENAL [thirunedunthANdakam  – 12]’ (not knowing eating, not interested in sleep),  and ‘pandhOdu kazhaL maruvAL [periya thirumozhi 5.5.9]’ (~ won’t play with her play things), and so on,

and so would not sustain themselves if separated from Him even for half a second, and having the mindset like they said in ‘mAkavaikuntham kANpadharku en manam Ekam eNNum [thiruvAimozhi 9.3.7]’ (My mind would only be thinking about seeing the bright SrIvaikuNtam), and ‘vAnulagam theLindhE enRu eidhuvan [periya thirumozhi 6.3.8]’ (When would the distress of this samsAram (life in material world) be cleared and would reach SrIvaikuNtam), and to get that goal, they have got parama bhakthi. Isn’t this their greatness compared to others?

aruLichcheyal ERRam – greatness of dhivya prabandhams is – as said in ‘aruL koNdu Ayiram in thamizh pAdinAn [kaNNinuN chiruth thAmbu – 8] (With great mercy sang 1000 pAsurams in thiruvAimozhi), it incarnated by the grace of emperumAn who gave divine vision, and as pushed by devotion as said in ‘avAvil anthAdhi [thiruvAimozhi 10.10.11]’ (this anthAdhi prabandham that was born due to parama bhakthi), and focused only on talking about emperumAn, having distinguished greatness, being enjoyable, imparting knowledge, imparting all the knowledge that needs to be gained, being reason for emperumAn’s love, being able to release from material world, able to give the benefits quickly. Isn’t this the greatness of these compared to other texts.

Now, thAzhvAdhum inRi avai thAm vaLarththOr(AchAryas) do without any mistakes and enrich existing good of such distinguished AzhvArs and their distinguished dhivya prabandhams.

srivaishna-guruparamparaiAchAryas (perceptors)

That is, greatness of the author (vakthru vailakshaNyam), greatness of the prabandham (prabandha vailakshaNyam), and the matter conveyed in them (prathipAdhya vailakshaNyam) are enriched (by the AchAryas) with more details and relationships, etc., while thinking only about emperumAn. Since they are ‘thAzhvAdhum il kuravar [upadhEsa raththina mAlai – 3] (AchAryas with no blemishes/shortcomings), so they enriched these also without any shortcomings. ‘vaLarththOr’ shows that a significant number of them were involved in this.

Now, the ones who enriched them did so through the vyAkyAnams (commentary text), so he (maNavALa mAmunigaL) continues to divine about that, as:

Ezh pArum uyya avargaL sey(dha) vyAkkiyaigaL uLLadhellAm vaiyam aRiyap pagarvOm vAyndhu – by this, ‘Ezh pArum uyya’ is – as said in ‘ivaRRAl uyyalAm [thiruvAimozhi 8.1.11]’ (can reach true goal by these ten pAsurams), and ‘ulaguyya umbargaLum kEttu uyya [iyal sARRu]’ (for those in this world and the other worlds to know and reach true goal), they (the vyAkyAnams of AchAryas) are such that those in all the worlds can listen to the words that are sweet to the ears (that is, ‘sevikkiniya senchol 1’, as the root reference is  aruLichchyal (dhivya prabandhams).

They (AchAryas) are of the nature of following that (aruLichcheyal) exactly, and doing it (vyAkyAnam) without expecting fame, profit, etc., and they are focused on the noble benefit that everyone should reach true goal by getting the rich meanings, and as said by him (maNavALa mAmunigaL) earlier ‘Ezh pArum uyya avargaL uraiththavaigaL thAm vAzhi seyya maRai thannudanE sErndhu [updhEsa raththina mAlai – 3]’ (for all the seven worlds to reach the true goal, long live what AzhvArs sang, and along with it the vEdhas), based on faith they follow the pronouncements of vEdhas when conveying the meanings (of prabandhams), (those vyAkyAnams are) best reference (pramANam) and due to that it can be followed by all the worlds, and be the reason for everyone to reach the true goal.

nampillai-goshti1nampiLLai’s kAlakshEpa gOshti  (group of discourse) at kOvil (SrIrangam)

avargaL sey(dha) vyAkkiyaigaL uLLadhellAm – As they are many, their vyAkyAnams are also in that way. He (maNavALa mAmunigaL) divines in detail in further pAsurams that such and such are those vyAkyAnams.

uLLadhellAm vaiyam aRiyap pagarvOm vAyndhu – That is – as said in ‘agal gyAlaththavar aRiya neRi ellAm eduththu uraiththa [thiruvAimozhi 4.8.6]’ (for the ignorant people of the wide world to know He divined the essence of all the means (to reach Him)) ,

(maNavALa mAmunigaL, upon) seeing the misfortune of the (ignorant) people, thinking that their interest might be piqued about one (vyAkyAnam) or the other, he divines his vow that he would inform about all the meanings for all the sentient for them to reach true goal. This is how his fruitful vow is.

srisailesa-thanian-mamunigal-eedu-goshtimaNavALa mAmunigaL’s eedu kAlakshEpa gOshti (discourse of thiruvAimozhi vyAkyAnam)

Or, by saying that so and so divined vyAkyAnam for such and such prabandham, he divines for the sampradhAyam to be without any shortcomings, and so for people to reach true goal.

pagarvOm vAyndhuhe divines about their vyAkyAnams not based on cursory knowledge, but with the mind immersed in its meanings (vAyndhu).

This is how the mindset of significant love of maNavALa mAmunigaL is, as he himself said in ‘paNdu pala Ariyarum … piRarkkuk kAdhaludan kaRpiththu [Arththi prabandham 28]’ (what the preceptors divined earlier… taught others with love).

– – – – – – – – – –

Translation: raghurAm SrInivAsa dhAsan

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  1. 6.11