iraNdAm thiruvandhAdhi – 61 – ninRadhOr pAdham

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AzhwAr narrates how emperumAn showed that he is devoted to his followers. He says that not only his form, even his activities are devoted to his followers only.

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

ninRadhOr pAdham nilam pudhaippa nINda thOL
senRu aLandhadhenbar dhisaiyellAm anRu
karumANiyAy irandha kaLvanE unnaip
piramANiththAr peRRa pERu

Word by Word Meaning

anRu – long ago
karumANi Ay – as a bachelor with black complexion
irandha – asking for alms (from mahAbali for 3 steps of earth)
kaLvanE – Oh cunning emperumAn!
ninRadhu Or pAdham – one divine foot which stood (to measure the earth)
nilam – the entire earth
pudhaippa – hiding it
nINda thOL – the huge divine shoulder which grew
dhisai ellAm senRu – permeating through all directions
aLandhadhu enbar – (knowledgeable people) say that  it measured (the upper worlds)

Such an activity that you carried out
unnai piramANiththAr peRRa pERu – is the great benefit that all those who believed you, got


ninRadhOr pAdham nilam pudhaippa – when nobody had even thought of, a divine foot suddenly hid the entire earth.

Or pAdham – AzhwAr is not one who would say things in a mathematical way such ‘as one time one is one’ just as we would when one mentions about one divine foot, we would immediately say that the other divine foot did this. Hence, having mentioned about divine foot, immediately he talks about what the divine shoulder did.

nINda thOL senRu aLandhadhu enbar dhisai ellAm – those with knowledge would say that once he obtained the alms he had asked for, his shoulders spread out in all directions and permeated everywhere. They would say that the moment mahAbali poured water on his hand as a symbol of having acceded to vAmana’s request for alms, the shoulders became extremely joyful as if they had got something which they could never get and grew in all directions and measured.

enbar – AzhwAr feels distressed that he is listening to this through his ears today, and is not seeing the incident! Where did I get lost on that day!

anRu karumANiyAy irandha kaLvanE –  Oh one who has the divine form which removes  the ennui [of followers], one who wouldn’t go until he obtained what he had asked for in alms, one who made himself as an expert in asking for alms!

mANiyAy – wasn’t it the disguise of the great emperumAn! If someone calls the great thirumalai hills as a ‘stone’ wouldn’t his mouth be torn asunder?

irandha – when mahAbali was arrogant to claim the worlds of emperumAn as his own, did not emperumAn go to him and ask his own worlds from him as alms!

kaLvanE – he showed such a [deceitful] divine form to mahAbali and seized everything from mahAbali.

kaLvanE – did he cheat mahAbali? Was it not AzhwAr that he attracted with his beauty! Those who appropriate AthmA, which is actually emperumAn’s, as their own are called AthmApahAris (abductors of AthmA). Since emperumAn abducts such people also, he can be called the AthmApahAri of AthmApahAris (abductor of abductors). However, when he had to take back his possession [from mahAbali], instead of taking it directly, he had to obtain it through alms. The reason for that is ….

unnaip piramANiththAr peRRa pERu – the purpose of redeeming earth from mahAbali was not for helping indhra alone. Was it not to enable those who had given you the responsibility of taking care of themselves, to sleep in peace since there is nothing for them to do [you would be doing everything for them] after they think of this act of yours! swAmy ALavandhAr says in sthOthra rathnam 25thvadhagrE SaraNAgathAnAm parAbhava: nathEnu rUpa:” (it is not proper for you if those who surrendered to you suffer); just as he included everyone instead of talking about only him, if people obtain a benefit it will be for everyone and not for just one person. nammAzhwAr too has mentioned in his thiruvAimozhi 8-1-4 “enganam thERuvar umarE” (how will people believe that you are the protector?), talking in the plural instead of only about himself. It is said that bhattar was asking of himself one day “these SrIvaishNavas, after hearing one person say ‘I will take care of your responsibilities’ (gIthAchAryan/emperumAn), do not carry out any activity themselves for their lives. Yet they live in comfort, without any shortcoming. What is the reason for this? ”. Later he mercifully said “I have understood the reason. Since they have given their responsibility to an entity, they will be without any worry. Since that person will carry out everything for them, including going as a messenger, driving their chariots, taking alms on their behalf etc, they will be peaceful without any shortcoming”

We shall take up the 62nd pAsuram next.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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