thiruvAimozhi – 1.7.1 – piRavith thuyar

srImathE satakOpAya nama:
srImathE rAmAnujAya nama:
srImath varavaramunayE nama:

Full series >> First Centum >> Seventh decad


Introduction for this pAsuram

Highlights from thirukkurukaippirAn piLLAn‘s introduction

No specific introduction.

Highlights from nanjIyar‘s introduction

AzhwAr becomes mesmerised seeing emperumAn who fulfils the desires of mumukshus who just seek liberation from the pains of material realm to be seated in self-enjoyment even after approaching emperumAn who is infinitely enjoyable.

Highlights from vAdhi kEsari azhagiya maNavALa jIyar‘s introduction

In first pAsuram, AzhwAr explains the pure nature of bhagavAn who is being worshiped.

Highlights from periyavAchchAn piLLai‘s introduction

See nanjIyar‘s introduction.

Highlights from nampiLLai‘s introduction as documented by vadakkuth thiruvIdhip piLLai

First pAsuram – AzhwAr censures the kEvalar (one who desires self-enjoyment) for giving up bhagavAn and seeking out ulterior benefits (of enjoying oneself) and leaving him.


பிறவித் துயர் அற ஞானத்துள் நின்று
துறவிச் சுடர் விளக்கம் தலைப் பெய்வார்
அறவனை ஆழிப்படை அந்தணனை
மறவியை இன்றி மனத்து வைப்பாரே

piRavith thuyar aRa gyAnaththuL ninRu
thuRavich chudar viLakkam thalaip peyvAr
aRavanai Azhippadai andhaNanai
maRaviyai inRi manaththu vaippArE


Word-by-Word meanings (based on vAdhi kEsari azhagiya maNavALa jIyar‘s 12000 padi)

piRavith thuyar – sufferings which arise out of birth
aRa – to remove
gyAnaththil – in knowledge  (to see AthmA)
ninRu – having conviction
thuRavi – being discharged from all bindings
chudar – the radiant AthmA‘s
viLakkam – manifestation
thalaippeyvAr – ones who are interested in
aRavanai – most benevolent (due to his bestowing the results for such persons)
Azhippadai – one having the sudharsana chakram (which purifies the heart)
anthaNanai – the purest Iswara (supreme lord)
maRaviyai inRi – having him as means
manaththu vaippAr – how they are meditating! (accuses them)

Simple transalation (based on vAdhi kEsari azhagiya maNavALa jIyar‘s 12000 padi)

To remove the sufferings which arise from birth, those who are situated in knowledge (on AthmA), giving up all attachments, seeking out for self-realisation, meditate upon emperumAn who is most benevolent, who carries the sudharsana chakram and who is the purest supreme lord! Here, AzhwAr is censuring such kaivalyArththis (those who seek out self-enjoyment after being liberated) for accepting emperumAn as the means but not as the goal too.

It is also explained in the context of upAsaka (bhakthi yOga nishta) who desires for eternal bliss of experiencing sarvEsvaran. Here, bhagavAn is explained as the one who is the controller of upAsana dharma (the process of upAsana). sudharsana chakram is explained as the one who removes ignorance. viLakkam (AvirbhAvam/manifestation)  of AthmA is explained as realising the true nature of jIvAthmA.

vyAkyAnams (commentaries)

Highlights from thirukkurukaippirAn piLLAn‘s vyAkyAnam

See vAdhi kEsari azhagiya maNavALa jIyar‘s translation.

Highlights from nanjIyar‘s vyAkyAnam

See nampiLLai‘s vyAkyAnam.

Highlights from periyavAchchAn piLLai‘s vyAkyAnam

See nampiLLai‘s vyAkyAnam.

Highlights from nampiLLai‘s vyAkyAnam as documented by vadakkuth thiruvIdhip piLLai

  • piRavith thuyar aRa gyAnaththuL ninRu – kEvalar is explained in bhagavath gIthA 7.14 “jarA maraNa mOkshAya …” (to be free from old-age, death etc). Here, they are being explained. For all three types of samsAris – aiswaryArththi (one who desires for worldly wealth/pleasures), AthmaprApthi kAman (one who desires for self-realisation) and bhagavathprApthi kAman (one who desires for kainkaryam to bhagavAn), upAsana (worshiping bhagavAn) and anthimasmruthi (meditating upon their desired aspect during the last moments) are common. But why is there difference in the result? That is because, while worshiping emperumAn, they desire for different results, i.e., instead of desiring kainkaryam to him, stopping short. This is what is explained in thiruppallANdu 4th pAsuram “varambozhi vandhu” (remove the boundaries and come). The cause for such interest in different results is their sukrutha thArathamyam (difference in level of piety). emperumAn himself declares in gIthA 7.16 “chathurvidhA bhajanthE mAm janAssukruthinOrjuna” (Oh arjuna! there are four types of pious persons who worship me). It is based on their virtue that they develop the taste for different results. For such results, they carry out upAsanam (worship). Based on their upAsanam, the results will occur.
  • piRavith thuyar …AzhwAr wonders “Why do they approach emperumAn and simply stop with insignificant results?”. piRavi – janmam – here this term also includes the other five aspects viz – asthi (existence), pariNamathE (change), vivarthdhathE (growth), apakshIyathE (decline) and vinasyathi (cease to exist). To eliminate all of these (they worship emperumAn). He too prays to emperumAn in thiruviruththam 1 “inninRa nIrmai ini yAm uRAmai” (I cannot bear this suffering any more) – what is the reason for AzhwAr censuring these persons here? For AzhwAr, when samsAram (material suffering) is eliminated, he is naturally leaning towards kainkaryam. But for the kaivalyArththis, eliminating material suffering is the only goal – so, there is a distinction.
  • gyAnaththuL ninRu – The result of “piRavith thuyar aRa” (eliminating of material suffering) leads to “gyAnaththuL ninRu” (being situated in proper knowledge). AthmA is both gyAna guNakam (one who has knowledge as an attribute/quality) and gyAthA (one who knows).]
  • thuRavich chudar viLakkam thalaip peyvAr – The contraction of knowledge for the AthmA that is seen in material situation does not exist in the liberated state where the knowledge is fully expanded. When we look at “piRavith thuyar aRa gyAnaththuL ninRu” from upAsana perspective, “thuRavich chudar viLakkam” (giving up attachments and self-realisation) are the result.
  • aRavanai – dhArmika – the most benevolent. emperumAn only looks for the quality of approaching him even for insignificant results – he becomes pleased by that and bestows the results. Even when they don’t want him and pray for insignificant fruits, he mercifully bestows them those results.
  • Azhippadai andhaNanai – One who holds sudharsana chakram which will remove the obstacles for self-realisation. Here, bhagavAn is treated by kaivalyArththis as cow-dung which is a purifier but once purified the cow-dung that was used to purify gets thrown out. They only looked at emperumAn as “sudhdhan” (pure/purifier) but their hearts did not understand his bhOgyathA (most enjoyable nature). AzhwAr is saying “Instead of becoming mesmerized in the divine posture of emperumAn holding the chakram in his hand, they simply hold him as the one who purifies them”.
  • maRaviyai inRi manaththu vaippArE – without forgetting, they will meditate upon him. For AzhwAr, when he sees the beautiful form of emperumAn with his chakram, he does not remember the first line (where its explained that emperumAn is the one who relieves us from samsAram). thirumangai AzhwAr too said in periya thirumozhi 10.10.9 “Azhiyodum ponnAr sArngamudaiya adigaLai innAr enRu aRiyEn” (I don’t recognize this master [of mine] who has the chakram and golden bow in his hands) – AzhwArs become bewildered seeing emperumAn‘s beautiful form. If his divine form can even make his devotees forget the good aspects (real identity etc), how come it does not make these kaivalyArththis forget the bad aspect (their attachment to self enjoyment)? They will pursue him (meditate upon him) for self-enjoyment even after seeing his divine form. In case of upAsakar (bhakthi yOga nishtar), the same is explained as – even after experiencing his most enjoyable nature, how they are staying steady instead of losing their consciousness – they are pretty strong-hearted.

In the next article we will enjoy the next pAsuram.

adiyen sarathy ramanuja dasan

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