thiruppAvai – 26 – mAlE maNivaNNA

srImathE satakOpAya nama:
srImathE rAmAnujAya nama:
srImadh varavaramunayE nama:

Full Series

 “What do you need?” asks krishNan, and these gOpikAs ask for the things they need for doing nOnbu. They who enjoy union with krishNan, why are they asking for these things?

Since the elders asked them to do nOnbu, the opportunity which the gOpikAs have utilized for being alone with krishNan to discuss about nOnbu; it would help them see krishNan’s face outside (they had been kept inside their houses all these days); it would help recite krishNan’s names to their mouth’s content (திருநாமங்களை வாயாரச் சொல்லுகைக்கு); and due to their thankfulness towards gOpas (for letting the gOpikAs meet krishNan).

{ We see very interesting conversation between krishNan and gOpikAs, in this pAsuram }

மாலே மணிவண்ணா மார்கழி நீராடுவான்
மேலையார் செய்வனகள் வேண்டுவன கேட்டியேல்
ஞாலத்தை எல்லாம் நடுங்க முரல்வன
பால் அன்ன வண்ணத்து உன் பாஞ்ச சன்னியமே
போல் வன சங்கங்கள் போய்ப்பாடுடையனவே
சாலப் பெரும்பறையே பல்லாண்டு இசைப்பாரே
கோல விளக்கே கொடியே விதானமே
ஆலின் இலையாய் அருளேலோர் எம்பாவாய்.

mAlE maNivaNNA mArgazhi nIrAduvAn
mElaiyAr seivanagaL vENduvana kEttiyEl
gyAlaththai ellAm nadunga muralvana
pAlanna vaNNaththu un pAncha channiyamE
pOlvana sangangaL pOippAdu udaiyanavE
sAlap perum paRaiyE pallANdu isaippArE
kOla viLakkE kodiyE vidhAnamE
Alin ilaiyAy aruL ElOrempAvAi

Word by Word Meaning

mAlE – Oh you who is loving (of your devotees)!
maNi vaNNA – having color like a blue diamond!
Alin ilaiyAy – (during praLayam) slept in a new banyan leaf!
kEttiyEl – if you inquire about the
vENduvana – needed items
seivanagaL – for actions done
mElaiyAr – by preceptors / earlier generations
mArgazhi nIrAduvAn – for bathing/nOnbu of mArgazhi
(we list those items)
sangangaL – conches
pAl anna vaNNaththu un pAncha channiyamE pOlvana – like your pAncha janyam (conch) that is white in color like milk
muralvana – which can sound (such that)
gyAlaththai ellAm – whole of the world
nadunga – (would) vibrate/be scared;
paRai – paRai instrument (drum)
pOi pAdu udaiyana – with enough space
sAla peru – (and) very big;
pallANdu isaippAr – people who sing thiruppallANdu;
kOlam viLakku – (lamps) auspicious mangaLa dhIpam,
kodi – dhvajams (flags),
vidhAnam – clothes (covering us) above;
aruL – kindly give them.

Simple Translation

mAlE – mAL: loving/affectionate (to His devotees)

Whereas earlier they said ‘nArAyaNanE namakkE paRai tharuvAn‘ (only nArAyaNan would give us moksham / opportunity-to-do-kainkaryam) they sang about his greatness; now after seeing him, they conclude that His nature is to be kind to us; that he is defined by his kindness toward us.

pirAtti referred to Him as “saraNAgatha vathsalan” as the main aspect from the essence of srI rAmAyaNam. For mahAbhAratham, they are looking at krishNan’s ‘mAm Ekam..’ in gIthA, and his desire to be with us; his love for us adiyArs (Asritha vyAmOham) as his main guNam.

How did they come to that conclusion?

When they said ‘yAm vandha kAriyam ArAindhu aruL’, they saw that krishNan’s face became brighter and glowing than before, and he walked to his simhAsanam with eagerness to help and be with the gOpikAs, and being much more madly in love than before.

mAlAip pirandha nambiyai….‘ in nAchiAr thirumozhi.

maNi vaNNA – beautiful sapphire like blue colored form of Him

Even though he is supreme, he has made himself easily available to gOpikAs and is following their orders. Similar to how we could handle a sapphire or pearl, he is being very easy to have him in the tip of their sarees (mundhAnaiyil mudindhu ALalAmpadi irukkai / முன்தானையில் முடிந்து ஆளலாம்படியிருக்கை), wear, or even sell!

His desire for adiyArs they referred to is showing in his form too.

Even those who don’t like him are mesmerized by this beauty.

Even if he does not have his kindness, this beauty would not let them leave him;

His beauty which is the reason for these gOpikAs’ craze towards him.

mAlE seiyyum maNaLanai…..‘ (nAchiAr thirumozhi)

nOnbu and such would be the means for kAmyArthis (who do it for getting some other benefit); it would be just the following of what is required in sAsthram for nishkAmar (those who do not do it for any benefit), and would be a kainkaryam for prapannas.

==> “Why have you come here?”

They tell him what they have come here for:

mArgazhi nIrAduvAn

We came here to request the items needed for mArgazhi nIrAttam (nOnbu / krishNa sambhOgam).

Even though they got what they wanted (krishNan) as the result of nOnbu, they are asking him about the items needed for nOnbu – to help the elders get rain.

“What is this mArgazhi nIrAttam?”

“Isn’t it well known?”

Even though elders have decided that the gOpikAs shall do nOnbu and krishNan shall help them, He is asking these just for the enjoyment of conversing with these girls, because conversing with them is His goal.

“Is it as famous as what vEdhas say about what one should do for various benefits?”

mElaiyAr seivanagaL

(what people have been doing for eons)

“No not like that, dear krishNa. This is even more familiar to everyone, as what one does learning from their elders – sishtAchAram.  seyyAdhana seyyOm (we would not do what they have not done).

vEdhas say – “dharmagyasamaya: pramANam vEdhAscha” – the AchAram (behaviour, activities) of those who know dharmam is (the main) pramANam (root for true knowledge); (then) vEdhas are also pramANam.

yadhyadhAcharathi srEshta: (whatever a noble person follows, other people also would follow that; how much ever he does, that is how much the others would do)”

“If so, tell me what items you need”

vENduvana kEttiyEl

If you want to listen to what we need, if you can stop staring at us, then we will tell you what we need. Your focus is somewhere else.

Why is he having some other focus?

Since all the girls from 5 lakhs houses are in front of him, he is dwelling on their breasts, waist, eyes, and face, and sitting motionless like a chess player. So they pat him to get him out of his trance.

In svApadhEsam it is talking about gyAna, bhakthi, vairAkyams. These are the ones that are apt for an adhikAri (eligible person);
since it helps to see things, “eye” is meant for gyAnam;
since it is for enjoyment “breast” is meant for bhakthi;
since it is very slim, “waist” is meant for vairAkyam; If asked whether slimness imply vairAkyam, then, – slim due to virakthi which is about not being interested in worldly things.

“Your form are feast to my eyes, likewise, aren’t your words sweet to my ears? So tell me.”

“Are we here for your enjoyment? If you will listen without seeing parAkku (looking around at things), then we will tell you”.

And they list the items they came for:

gyAlaththai ellAm nadunga muralvana

(first they ask for conch)

This whole world should hear its (sangu) sound and prosper.

They are the ones who sang “valampuri pOl ninRu adhirndhu (4)”.

pAlanna vaNNaththu un pAncha channiyamE pOlvana sangangaL

The sangu (conch) that is white like the milk collected together; we need many of them.

They said ‘maNi vaNNa‘ since it is what they like (his color), so it goes without saying that they would like the color of the conch that is touched by him.

poippAdu udaiyanavE

sangu that is having the fame of being with you, having the fame of helping the ones like rukmiNi pirAtti (when she was waiting for krishNan to come and take her, krishNan used the sound of sangu as a sign to let her know of his arrival, when she was desperate and was ready to take her life).

==> Since the sound of conch is equated to praNavam, asking for conch is about asking for ananyArha sEshathvam that is highlighted in praNavam.

“Found one. what else?” (ஒன்று கண்டோம், பின்னையோவென்ன,)

sAlap perum paRaiyE

For starting if we used conch, don’t we need to do ‘kottu’ (mrdhangam like drum) for the purappAdu?

A big paRai (percussion instrument like drums), so big that it makes sound not for a small gathering, but that which reaches everywhere; everywhere where the sound of conch reached. paRai that makes such a sound when hit in the ‘middle’ of it.

==> Since paRai makes the sound from the ‘middle’, and the middle word ‘nama:’ in thirumanthram is about pArathanthriya gyAnam (knowing about subservience) which helps remove svasvAthanthriyam (thinking we are independent of perumAn) which is a bhagavath-ananyArha sEshathva virOdhi (i.e., it prevents the above mentioned anayArha sEshathvam to peruman), and helps remove svAdhIna karthruthvam & bhOkyathvam (doing it for own benefit or own enjoyment) when doing kainkaryam, which is the symbol of sEshathvam.

“what else?” (பின்னையோவென்ன,)

pallANdu isaippArE

and we need ones who will be going with us singing thiruppallaNdu

==> we need sath-sahavAsam (association with adiyArs).

“what else?” (பின்னையோவென்ன,)

kOla viLakkE

Beautiful lamp; auspicious mangaLa dhIpam.

One who is singing would be able to see us and we would be able to see him.

==> need bhAgavatha sEshathva gyAnam which makes it enjoyable for perumAn when we go with bhagavath-ananyArha sEshathvam.


We need flags to wave, to go in front of us and which would be visible from afar.

==> need kainkaryam that is the indication of sEshathvam.


(cloth) covering (us) above (கூறாளம்) from the mist.

==> in that kainkaryam we need removal of doing it for our own enjoyment.

These are the things we need when we go for nIrAttam.

**** He starts replying about these items:

“I don’t have many sangams, you take pAncha janyam”.

Only if there is someone like him would there have been multiple sangams that are like his pAncha janyam.

“When all the people were clapping around me when I was dancing while balancing the pots (kudak kUththu), I was making the beats with a paRai tied to my hip (pArOrgaLellAm magizhap paRai kaRanga / பாரோர்களெல்லாம் மகிழப் பறை கறங்க – siRiya thirumadal) – take that one for paRai; for singing thiruppallaNdu take periyAzhwAr (because I cannot find anyone who cares about me like he does); for lamp take nappinnai pirAtti (they too sang, ‘kula viLakkE‘) (nappinnai pirAtti would also be too happy to help her adiyArs as it would help them reach perumAn), for flag take the one that has got periya thiruvadi (garudan), for vidhAnam on the top take my uththarIyam (white or colored cloth tied in the hip).

For vidhAnam why not give thiru ananthAzhvAn who covered him on the day of his birth (when going to thiruVaippAdi)? Even though He asked others to go, since thiruvananthazhvAn would not take even one step without perumAn with him (ozhivil kAlamellAm udanAi manni vazhuvilA adimai / ஒழிவில் காலமெல்லாம் உடனாய் மன்னி வழுவிலா அடிமை – thiruvAimozhi), He gave his uththarIyam instead.

His uththarIyam is also something we enjoy. (vAttam thaNiya vIsIrE / வாட்டம் தணிய வீசீரே)

After getting all of perumAn‘s dear items, the are like equivalent to perumAn having all these items.

“One each is not enough; we need many of them like these”

“will I search for what is not there?” (இல்லாததைத் தேடப்போமோ?)

“Is there anything that is impossible/hard for you?”

“Is it easy for me?”

==> How can I create what is not there?

Alin ilaiyAy..

You became very small, got all the worlds into your stomach, and you slept in a banyan leaf – is there anything that is not possible for you?!

For us, you can create even something that does not even exist in this world.

You possess agaditha gadanA sAmarthyam (smartness to connect/make things that cannot be connected/made).


Even if we do not ask you might still help; you are not without ability to help; for our goals your blessing is the means.

By ‘mAlE maNivaNNA‘, ANdAL talks about ‘mAm‘ (‘me’, the kind me); by ‘Alin ilaiyAy‘ she talks about ‘aham‘ (‘I’, the only one who can help you get mOksham (not other means)) – from charama slOkam.

Since perumAn gives them his pAncha janyam etc., it goes with what muNdakOpanishadh 3-1-3 says: “niranjana: paramam sAmyamupaithi” – in short: when a gyAni sees perumAn (brahmam) then the gyAni (gains mOksham and) gains gyAnam similar to that of perumAn.

ElOrempAvAi – commit and follow our ways

{ In this pAsuram, gopikAs take this great opportunity to talk to krishNan and to praise his kalyANa guNams (divine qualities); they ask him to give the items needed to do their nOnbu; those items would in fact help go in a procession and sing krishNan’s nAmams.

Doing nOnbu, and asking those items, are part of what the elders wanted them to do. Their own personal agenda? Destination krishNan, be with Him as long as possible, play with him, tease him, enjoy him, and do a lot of kainkaryams to him. }

English translation raghurAm srInivAsa dhAsan

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0 thoughts on “thiruppAvai – 26 – mAlE maNivaNNA”

  1. Male Manivanna – Idhil ‘Saalapperumparaiye pallaandu isaippaare’ – Idharku ‘thirupallandu isaippare’ enru artham pottirukku. Andal sonnadhu, pala aandu = pallandu. Idharkum ‘thirupallandukkum’ sambandham illai enbadhu adiyen abiprayam.


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