thiruvAimozhi – 2.7.4 – gOvindhan

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Full series >> Second Centum >> Seventh decad

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Introduction for this pAsuram

Highlights from thirukkurukaippirAn piLLAn‘s introduction

No specific introduction.

Highlights from nanjIyar‘s introduction

In the fourth pAsuram, AzhwAr becomes amazed thinking “How ingenious is he! He has changed those who are related to me like myself”.

Highlights from vAdhi kEsari azhagiya maNavALa jIyar‘s introduction

Subsequently, AzhwAr explains the ingenuity of emperumAn for bestowing the same favour to all his relatives and their families too.

Highlights from periyavAchchAn piLLai‘s introduction

See nanjIyar‘s introduction.

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

See nanjIyar‘s introduction.


கோவிந்தன் குடக் கூத்தன் கோவலன் என்று என்றே குனித்துத்
தேவும் தன்னையும் பாடி ஆடத் திருத்தி என்னைக் கொண்டு என் –
பாவம் தன்னையும் பாறக் கைத்து எமர் ஏழ் எழு பிறப்பும்
மேவும் தன்மையம் ஆக்கினான் வல்லன் எம் பிரான் விட்டுவே

gOvindhan kudak kUththan kOvalan enRu enRE kuniththu
thEvum thannaiyum pAdi Adath thiruththi ennaik koNdu en –
pAvam thannaiyum pARak kaiththu emar Ezh ezhu piRappum
mEvum thanmaiyam AkkinAn vallan em pirAn vittuvE


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

vallan – being capable (of completing any task he desires)
vittu – pervading all objects [as vishNu]
empirAn – my lord who acknowledged me (like rounding up a town to catch a single person]
gOvindhan – (suiting his birth) having abundance of cows
kudak kUththan – (expressing the joy of such abundance of cattle through) being a dancer (with pots)
kOvalan – having a birth in cowherd clan (which matches such wealth and activities)
enRu enRE – saying these aspects individually
kuniththu – dancing out of great joy
thEvum – dhEvathvam – supremacy (which is the cause for such simplicity)
thannaiyum – his special aspect of simplicity
pAdi – singing (to express the joy)
Ada – to dance
thiruththi – reformed me (to be on a par with nithyasUris like an alchemist who would change iron to gold)
ennai – me
koNdu – accepting (me as his own)

hurdles, which stop such acceptance,
en – my
pAvam thannaiyum – sins
pARa – to run away
kaiththu – drove
emar – those who are related to me
Ezh ezhu piRappum – seven times seven births
mEvum thanmaiyum – made us to desire for him and attain him
AkkinAn – done

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

emperumAn being capable (of completing any task he desires), pervading all objects [as vishNu] is my lord who acknowledged me (like rounding up a town to catch a single person]; he is having abundance of cows, (expressing the joy of such abundance of cattle through) being a dancer (with pots) matching his birth in the cowherd clan. He made me dance and sing out of great joy saying individually his aspects such as his supremacy (which is the cause for simplicity) and his special aspect of simplicity. He reformed me (to be on a par with nithyasUris like an alchemist who would change iron to gold) and accepted me. He also drove my sins to run away from me and reformed my relatives of seven times seven births [many many ancestors/descendants]. How great is his capability!

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

  • gOvindhan – This wealth is not even seen in SrIvaikuNtam (spiritual realm). Wealth due to abundance of cows is only seen here [in vrindhAvanam].
  • kudak kUththan – Like brAhmaNas would perform fire sacrifices when there is abundance of wealth, when cowherds get abundance of wealth, they would spend it by dancing with pots. bhagavAn who is explained in chAndhOgya upanishath as “avAkyanAdhara:” (anAdhara: – not caring for anyone since he has no desires left to be fulfilled;  avAkI – he maintains silence considering everything else as unworthy of conversation – this is bhagavAn‘s state in SrIvaikuNtam), dancing crazily like well-grown crop swinging in heavy wind.
  • kOvalan – gOpAla (cowherd) – having birth which matches aforementioned qualities / activities. This wealth was earned by bhagavAn taking birth in this cowherd clan.
  • enRu enRE kuniththu – contemplating such aspects, [AzhwAr] naturally started dancing; when AzhwAr thinks about bhagavAn’s dependence on his devotees [as in krishNAvathAram], he cannot stop glorifying it.
  • thEvum – Here dhEvathvam (supremacy) indicates aiswaryam [ability to control all]; thannai (self – natural aspect) indicates being controlled by his devotees; this dependence towards his devotees is his natural quality; vaSishta said to SrI rAma in SrI rAmAyaNam ayOdhyA kANdam 111.7 “… AthmAnam nAthivarthEthA: …” (You accept bharatha’s words and ensure that your true nature of being dependent on your devotees is retained). Some would say it as “AthmabhUtham bharatham nAthivarthEthA:” (Don’t lose bharatha who is like your AthmA). But bhattar would explain it as “vaSishta is saying ‘your natural quality is to be dependent on your devotees. By discarding your brother’s request, don’t lose your such natural quality'”.
  • pAdi Adath thiruththi – What is the difference between “enRu enRE kuniththu” and here (also speaking about dancing and singing)? Previously his simplicity was glorified while dancing/singing; here both supremacy and simplicity are glorified while dancing/singing. So, it can be explained that the object of singing/dancing is different in two places. Alternative explanation: Previously, it can be said as AzhwAr just starting to dance/sing without full intent of his heart and now he is fully engrossed into it with full intent of his heart.
  • thiruththi – Like a barren land is refined to be fertile, AzhwAr is transformed to have the behaviour/activities of nithyasUris.
  • ennaik koNdu – accepting me. If AzhwAr says “now he made me pursue him through some means”, that will not match AzhwAr’s philosophy which emphasises on his acquiring this glory due to bhagavAn‘s grace only. So, what is AzhwAr saying here? Like a person would pick-up a precious gem from mud, wash it thoroughly and use it to his heart’s content, bhagavAn accepted him, destroyed AzhwAr’s sins which cannot be destroyed by self efforts and drove those sins away.
  • emar … – Not only he did this for me, but he bestowed the same mercy of reaching him naturally for my ancestors/descendants for many generations.
  • empirAn vittu vallan – sarvEsvaran who is my saviour, who can do whatever he pleases. Is there anything that cannot be done by the omnipotent lord? AzhwAr considers emperumAn‘s omnipresence also is for him only.

In the next article we will enjoy the next pAsuram.

adiyen sarathy ramanuja dasan

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