thiruvAimozhi – 4.3.4 – mAyththal eNNi

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Introduction for this pAsuram

Highlights from thirukkurukaippirAn piLLAn‘s introduction

No specific introduction.

Highlights from nanjIyar‘s introduction

In fourth pAsuram – AzhwAr becomes pleased thinking “My prANa (vital air) has become the suitable pampering tool for your fatigue after performing activities such as accepting milk from [demoniac] pUthanA and so on, and for the tenderness of yours, who is Sriya:pathi (lord of SrI mahAlakshmi)”.

Highlights from vAdhi kEsari azhagiya maNavALa jIyar‘s introduction

Subsequently, AzhwAr says “For you who is Sriya:pathi, who has enslaved me completely by killing pUthanA who is anukUla Sathru (enemy in disguise), my prANa became the distinguished decoration on your divine head”.

Highlights from periyavAchchAn piLLai‘s introduction

See nampiLLai‘s introduction.

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

Fourth pAsuram. AzhwAr says “Though I could not pamper you to remove your fatigue during the killing of pUthanA et al, for your tender divine body which cannot survive without pampering, my existence itself is the suitable garland”.


mAyththal eNNi vAy mulai thandha mAyap pEy uyir
mAyththa Aya mAyanE! vAmananE! mAdhavA!
pUththaN mAlai koNdu unnaip pOdhAl vaNangEnElum nin
pUththaN mAlai nedu mudikkup punaiyum kaNNi enadhuyirE


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

mAyththal – to finish
eNNi – thinking
vAy – in the divine mouth
mulai thandha – placed her breast
mAyam – having a motherly form (which is favourable)
pEy – evil demon’s
uyir – prANa (vital air)
mAyththa – finished
Ayan – without any deficiency in “cowherd child” qualities
mAyanE – Oh amazing emperumAn!
vAmananE – blessing me to see vAmanAvathAram (where he manifested his lordship over the whole universe and showed that everything is fully dependent on him)
mAdhavA – Oh one who established (your natural) Sriya:pathithvam (being the lord of SrI mahAlakshmi)!
unnai – you (who is the destroyer of enemy in disguise)
pU – with distinguished flowers
thaN – cool
mAlai koNdu – with garlands
pOdhu – according to the situation
vaNangEnElum – even though I did not get to worship you
nin – your
pU – abundant flowers
thaN – fresh
mAlai – decorated with garland
nedu – tall (revealing the supremacy over everyone)
mudikku – for the divine crown
punaiyum – worn as decoration
kaNNi – garland
enadhu uyirE – my prANa (vital air, life)!

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

Oh amazing emperumAn who finished the life of the evil demon who was having a (favourable) motherly form and place her breast in your divine mouth thinking to finish you, who is without any deficiency in “cowherd child” qualities! Oh you who is blessing me to see vAmanAvathAram! Oh one who established (your natural) Sriya:pathithvam! Even though I did not get to worship you with cool garlands and flowers, my prANa (vital air, life) is the garland which is worn as decoration for your tall divine crown which is decorated with garland made of abundance of flowers!

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

  • mAyaththal eNNi – Looking at her intentions while approaching krishNa, it is natural that there is need for some one to care for him. Since there is no mention of who is to be finished in “mAyththal eNNi” (thinking to finish), AzhwAr is saying “She came to finish the whole universe”; when the soul is destroyed, the body will naturally be destroyed; when the life itself is attacked, one need not attack each limb; he is the singular soul of the entire universe. sugrIva on seeing vibhIshaNa with his assistants said in SrI rAmAyaNam yudhdha kANdam 17.5 “asmAn hanthum na samSaya:” (to kill us, there is no doubt).
  • vAy mulai thandha – AzhwAr is saying “thandha” (gave) since pUthanA trying to breast-feed the poison to krishNa made AzhwAr feel as if she gave it to AzhwAr himself; alternatively, “thandha” and “koduththa” can be simply treated as synonyms and is simply explaining that she breast-fed poison to krishNa.
  • mAyap pEy – Not just evil by birth, she also came in disguise. That is, instead of coming in her real form, she came in a motherly form as said in periya thirumozhi 1.5.6 “thAyAy vandha pEy” (the demon which came in the disguise of mother).
  • uyir mAyththu – Whatever she came to take [krishNa’s life], he did that [took away her life] to herself.
  • Aya mAyanE – Oh amazingly capable cowherd! He accepted the milk as a toddler; she too gave him milk like a mother; just by the nature of things [bhagavAn and her enmity towards him], she died.
  • vAmananE – At least in krishNAvathAram, if pUthanA breast-feeds poison, there is a real mother who can give antidote to him there. mUnRAm thiruvanthAdhi 74 “vengongai uNdAnai mIttu Aychchi UttuvAn, than kongai vAy vaiththAL sArndhu” (Mother yaSOdhA rescuing krishNa from pUthanA who gave her hot [evil] breast, placed her breast in his mouth], mUnRAm thiruvanthAdhi 29 “pEychchi pAl uNda perumAnaip pErththu eduththu, Aychchi mulai koduththAL anjAdhE” (grabbing krishNa from the demon from whom he was drinking milk, without any fear, mother yaSOdhA gave milk”. Another explanation – after giving birth to krishNa, his mother and father were engaged in thapas [were not paying attention], so he himself chases down the demons [and kills them]. When he goes after the enemies, it creates fear in the devotees’ hearts. This is what is done in periya thiruvanthAdhi 16 “sIrAl piRandhu siRppAl vaLarAdhu, pEr vAmanan AgAkkAl pErALA!” (Oh great personality! if you did not take birth as vAmana who did not have wealthy traditions while being born …).
  • mAdhavA – As said in a proverb “thInAL thiruvaudaiyArkku illai” (those who have SrI mahAlakshmi, have no inauspicious days], he escaped these dangers to embrace her. Even when there is no danger, they like to sing mangaLASAsanam (well-wishes) to the togetherness of periya pirAttiyAr and periya perumAL; those caring persons [AzhwArs] said in thiruppallANdu 2vadivAy nin vala mArbinil vAzhginRa mangaiyum pallANdu” (Long live, you who is having SrI mahAlakshmi in your beautiful right chest).
  • pUth thaN mAlai koNdu – With cool flower garlands. Though I did not get to fall at your divine feet and serve you during the times of pUthanA et al.
  • ni pUth thaN mAlai nedu mudikku – For your divine crown which reveals your supremacy over everyone which cannot survive without cool flower garland, my prANa/saththai (life/existence) is the desired garland.

In the next article we will enjoy the next pAsuram.

adiyen sarathy ramanuja dasan

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