thiruvAimozhi – 6.2.2 – pOgu nambI

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Full series >> Sixth Centum >> Second decad

Previous pAsuram

Introduction for this pAsuram

Highlights from thirukkurukaippirAn piLLAn‘s introduction

No specific introduction.

Highlights from nanjIyar‘s introduction

No specific introduction.

Highlights from vAdhi kEsari azhagiya maNavALa jIyar‘s introduction

Subsequently, emperumAn does not leave even after parAnguSa nAyaki tells him to do so; he smiles gently towards her and her mind becomes weakened seeing that; she says “instead of tormenting us, you go near those who are dear to you and wait for them playing your flute”.

Highlights from periyavAchchAn piLLai‘s introduction

See nampiLLai‘s introduction.

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

Second pAsuram. One [emperumAn] who did not get them to notice him, saw their face; one who could not get them to speak, got them to say “go”; now he is very grateful for that. When she says “go”, he does not just see that word, but knows what is going on in her heart. uyndha piLLai araiyar sang this quoting perumAL thirumozhi 6.8 “innam en kaiyagaththIngu oru nAL varudhiyEl en sinam thIrvan nAnE” (if you still come close to my hands’ reach, I will vent my anger by beating you up), and showing in action, how she will kick him with her feet and push him away with her hands; embAr mercifully heard that and showed him how she would turn her face away from him saying “it is not like that; if he gets such beatings, he will be happy since he is praying for her touch since long; so, that is not the meaning”. He mercifully said “Whatever you did staying away from me, she is saying that she will do it in his presence”. It is well known that, as embAr was totally detached from worldly pleasures, he would learn the specific details about the aspects/emotions of women from singappirAn; piLLai uRangA villi dhAsar would say – such embAr, while explaining “minnidai madavArgaL” decad, would make us wonder “why is this sanyAsi (ascetic) blabbering [romantic aspects] like this”.  This is how amazing his interest in matters relating to bhagavAn! Those who are engaged in inferior worldly pleasures, remain blissful; what to speak of the emotions of those who are engaged for a long time in emperumAn who has incomparable auspicious qualities. embAr used to say “in this samsAram where it is rare to find some one who would say ‘come’ (when ISvaran appears in front of them), we have parAnguSa nAyaki who says ‘go’ (since he delayed his arrival)”.


pOgu nambI! un thAmarai purai kaNNiNaiyum sevvAy muRuvalum
AgulangaL seyya azhidhaRkE nORROmE yAm?
thOgai mA mayilArgaL nin aruL sUduvAr sevi Osai vaiththezha
AgaL pOga vittuk kuzhal Udhu pOy irundhE


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

nambI – Oh you who are complete!
pOgu – (why are you not leaving even after being asked to go? From our proximity,) go
un – you are smiling at us; your,
thAmarai purai – attractive like a lotus flower
kaNNiNaiyum – eyes
sem – reddish
vAy – in your mouth
muRuvalum – smile (we are not fortunate to see that and be happy)
yAm – us (hurting our posture)
AgulangaL – anguish
seyya – manifest
azhidhaRku – to be finished
nORROmE – have we not vowed?

(emperumAn asked “did I come to finish you? No. I saw your hairdo and became joyful. Did I not? parAnguSa nAyaki said “we are not whom you think us to be”)
thOgai – with expanded feathers
mA – nice
mayilArgaL – having hairdo like peacock
nin – your
aruL – mercy
sUduvAr – don’t they have?

(when asked – are they not absent from here?)
Osai – sound
sevi vaiththu – on hearing
ezha – to rise and arrive

(so that the world does not know “he is playing the flute for them”)
AgaL – cows
pOga vittu – driving them far away

(as if calling them back)
pOy – going there
irundhu – staying there
kuzhal – flute
Udhu – play.

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

Oh you who are complete! Go. You are smiling at us; your eyes which are attractive like a lotus flower and the smile manifested in your reddish mouth cause us anguish and we have vowed to be finished [by that]; are those damsels who have hairdo which is similar to expanded feathers of nice peacock, not having your mercy? You play your flute to make them hear the sound to rise and arrive here. [Don’t do it directly so everyone can know your intentions] Drive away the cows far from you, and play the flute after going and staying there. Implies to emperumAn that, don’t think “can I not do the same here?”.

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

  • pOgu nambI – Since parAnguSa nAyaki is repeating “pOgu nambI“, it implies that emperumAn would have come closer by a couple of steps.  [She says] Come on! I don’t know how many other damsels you have touched; stay away so that your clothes don’t touch me. What will one who comes closer when said “go”, feel when said “don’t touch me”?
  • nambI – Would you do what is done by lowly people? Aren’t you desireless?
  • nambI – Are you having any shortcoming to be waiting for us like this? Do you need us? AzhwAr try to finish himself in thiruvAimozhi 4.8ERALum iRaiyOnum“, saying “uyirinAl kuRaivilam” (I don’t need this self if not desired by him); but he did not die, since emperumAn is existing. In thiruvAimozhi 5.4mAsaRu sOdhi“, AzhwAr tried to finish emperumAn [i.e., emperumAn’s great qualities, by performing madal]; here, when emperumAn arrives, AzhwAr says “gO”; I [nampiLLai] don’t know what is the reason [AzhwAr’s mind is too difficult to understand]. They are saying “nambI” because, he is disqualified to be in that group [of damsels]; where one should be humble, it is not apt to manifest one’s supremacy.
  • un thAmarai purai kaNNiNaiyum sevvAy muRuvalum – The eyes which had become dry due to not seeing her, cooled down and became fresh on seeing her; the internal bliss led to his joyful smile. This is the change in his form on hearing their nectarean words of rejection. In this samsAram where there is no one inviting him to come, it is even more difficult to tell him to leave [out of such great love]. While being in this world where there is no one even to pray to him for worldly benefits, it is rare to see someone who surrendered to him exclusively and go through such emotions due to that.
  • AgulangaL seyya – Agulam means pUsal (romantic quarrel), varuththam (sadness) and dhu:kham (sorrow). While there are two causes (eyes and smile), all the senses are weakening [for her]. For him, it was just one or two features [in his body] which changed; but for them, all the features changed. There is a difference between aNu (miniscule AthmA) melting and vibhu (great paramAthmA) melting. emperumAn asked “you told me that you have nothing to do with me; but you are speaking like those who have emotional attachment with me; this is contradictory! you said ‘pOgu nambI‘; but are also saying ‘AgulangaL seyya‘; what is the reason for this?”. They replied “Oh! Do you think that we are having emotional attachment towards you? Does the chandhrakAnthA stone (moon-stone) melt on seeing the moon due to any emotional attachment? [it is just unavoidable] As said in ‘avaSyamanubhOkthavyam‘ (must be experienced), can we avoid our destiny?”.
  • azhidhaRkE nORROmE yAm – This is our nature. Only when iLaiyaperumAL skips going along with you to the forest, can we avoid our destruction. It is said in SrI rAmAyaNam ayOdhyA kANdam 40.5 “srushtasthvam vanavAsAya” (sumithrA says to lakshmaNa – “you are given birth to accompany (and serve) SrI rAma in the forest”). nOnbu – that which is carried over from previous birth. Hearing them saying that, emperumAn thinks “such destruction will lead to union” and tells them “While you have changed so much on seeing me, why not continue on further?”; they replied “is that what you are thinking! we are not them [those other damsels]! we are destined to finish in this manner!”.
  • yAm – She is saying “there are others who pray to unite with you when separated from you”. He simply stood there manifesting his bliss of hearing them speak for a long time. she thought “our sight is relaxing for him” and turning her face away from him, stepped back; at that time, his heart became attached to her distinguished hairdo.
  • thOgai mA mayilArgaL – she continued to think “he is not going to see our paleness and teary eyes; we cannot stop what he is seeing by divine sanction!”; and that benefited him. Overcoming the destruction caused by his eyes and smile, her survival led to his enjoyment of her. He remained “our goal is completed first” [also explained as, I got to see their hairdo]. As said in SrI rAmAyaNam sundhara kANdam 19.3 “UrubhyAm udharam chAdhya bAhubyAncha bayOdharau” (sIthAp pirAtti sat there with fear covering her body with her hands and thighs [legs]), as she covered her body hiding them from the sight of demonic people, here she is covering herself to hide from the sight of emperumAn. That is how much romantic anger she is having.
  • thOgai mA mayilArgaL – As said in SrI rAmAyaNam sundhara kANdam 15.25 “neelanAgAbayA vENyA” (hair which resembles a dark serpent), he saw her hair which was not cared for; “it does not matter where you are facing; what beautiful hair you have!”. She is very knowledgeable [and having beautiful hair]; since he is desirous [and well aware of the different types of hair], he praises her hair. Those other girls are so great that they make him think on seeing our hair that it is their hair! They said “When one is separated from his dear consort, he sees her everywhere and in everything”. Those damsels who have nice hairdo which resembles the expanded feathers of a peacock.

emperumAn asks “is there anyone like that?”, parAnguSa nAyaki says,

  • nin aruL sUduvAr – Those who united with you before and are driving you crazy in their separation. Instead of suffering in separation from them, go and unite with them.

emperumAn asks “Alright! Until I find the way to get them, let me remain here for some time”; they said “do you know the means to get them? Why don’t you practice what you are an expert at [using what you have in your hand]?”; emperumAn asks “what is that?”, they reply,

  • sevi Osai vaiththezhak kuzhalUdhu – They are as said in perumAL thirumozhi 6.9 “engaLukkE oru nAL vandhu Udha un kuzhalinnisai pOdharAdhE” (would you not come and play your flute for us at least one day); when you play your flute, they will hear that; then they will come. As the serpents came and entered the sarpa yAgam (fire sacrifice performed by janamEjayan to kill all serpents), all the cowherd girls would come and fall at your divine feet! They are waiting to hear the sound of your flute; those who are separated from you have all their senses focussed on you only. When you start playing your flute, will anyone stay away as said in periyAzhwAr thirumozhi 3.6.1 “thUvalampuri udaiya thirumAl thUya vAyail kuzhalOsai vazhiyE kOvalar siRumiyar iLam kongai kudhugalippa udaluL avizhndhengum kAvalum kadandhu kayiRu mAlaiyAgi vandhu kavizhndhu ninRanar” (On hearing the divine flute music of SrIman nArAyaNan who is having sudharSana chakra in his hand, the young cowherd girls broke their barriers, had the protective ropes as garlands, with cherishing youthful bosoms, came running and stood with shyness in front of him)! All of them will come and fall at your feet! So you play your flute – parAnguSa nAyaki. He said “That is not my approach; everyone will complain that I called them by playing my flute to unite with those girls as said in perumAL thirumozhi 6.9 ‘kongu naRum kuzhalArgaLOdu kuzhaindhu kuzhal inidhUdhi vandhAy’ (mingling with girls who have fragrant, beautiful hair and playing flute); it is well known that I play the flute to invite the girls; so I cannot do that”.

They said “Alright. Listen. We will give you a good idea”.

  • AgaL pOga vittu – Let the cows go away and then play the flute to call them back. She said “Those who don’t know [your trick] will think that you are playing the flute to bring the cows back; the girls who know your intention, will reach you. And this also matches your family duty. It is said in thiruvAimozhi 6.4.2 ‘thInguzhal UdhiRRum nirai mEyththadhum‘ (Played sweet music in his flute and tended the cattle). So you do that”. emperumAn thought “Now, we have understood the means to be followed; also got instructed on how to practice the means; now, we won’t miss out on the goal; there is no more shortcoming for us”, and started playing his flute. Now, he does not violate the rules; they said “thOgai mA mayilArgaL … sevi Osai vaiththezha” (sing to those girls who have beautiful, peacock feather like hairdo); they did not explicitly identify the location! So, he started playing the flute from there itself. They said “If we give you an idea, why are you trying to play it upon us?”.
  • kuzhal Udhu pOyirundhE – You go and play the flute where you have the opportunity to attract the girls.
  • thOgai mA mayilArgaL – [It appears a SrIvaishNava may have arrived for the upanyAsam [lecture][ a bit late; so nampiLLai starts and explains it again] Since emperumAn is greatly knowledgeable [well aware of the types of hair], he started praising; they think “since he does not understand whose hair it is, he is praising without knowing – he is talking like a mad man”. They are discarding his best speeches [or his speeches about their hair].
  • sevi Osai vaiththezha – Having the music from the flute in their ears and arriving there.
  • AgaL pOgavittuk kuzhal Udhu – You send the cows and then play the flute. When you play the flute, your goal will be achieved and the cows too will have their stomach filled [by your divine flute music]. He said “their having the music of flute in their ears and rising is the result; my playing the flute is the means; should I not do it for my dearest persons? Let me sing staying right here” and started playing the flute.
  • pOy irundhE kuzhal Udhu – When we say one thing, you don’t do something else; you go to fertile lands where your dearest ones will assemble, stay there and play the flute.

In the next article we will enjoy the next pAsuram.

adiyen sarathy ramanuja dasan

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