iraNdAm thiruvandhAdhi – 100 – mAlE nediyOnE

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emperumAn asks AzhwAr “you have mentioned about how others approach me for other benefits. What is it that you want me to do for you?”. AzhwAr says “shrink the affection that I have for you so that I can hold it”.

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

mAlE nediyOnE kaNNanE  viNNavarkku
mElA viyan thuzhAyk kaNNiyanE  mElAl [mEnAL]
viLavinkAy kanRinAl vIzhththavanE enRan
aLavanRAl yAnudaiya anbu

Word by Word Meanimg

mAlE – Oh one who is affectionate (towards his followers)!
nediyOnE – Oh one who cannot be estimated [as this much]!
viNNavarkku mElA – Oh one who is the lord of nithyasUris!
viyan thuzhAyk kaNNiyanE – Oh one who is adorning the thuLasi garland!
kaNNanE – Oh one who was born as krishNa!
mEnAL – once upon a time
viLavin kAy – wood apple fruit (inside which a demon had entered)
kanRinAl – with a calf (inside which another demon had entered)
vIzhththavanE – Oh one who felled it
yAn udaiya – that I have (towards you)
anbu – the affection
enthan aLavanRu – does not remain within me


mAlE – one who is superior to everyone else! We can also construe this as one who has excessive affection towards his followers.

nediyOnE – one who cannot be estimated. This can also be construed as one who has boundless affection.

kaNNanE – the qualities mentioned earlier can be seen in kaNNan (krishNa). One who is bound to his followers; one who controls everyone.

viNNavarkku mElA viyan thuzhAyk kaNNiyanE – this mentions about the absence of limit to his wealth. One who is superior to nithyasUris and who is donning the garland of thuLasi as a manifestation of his wealth. It says how emperumAn is donning the divine garland on his shoulders and is manifesting his beauty to nithyasUris.

mElAl [mEnAL] viLavin kAy kanRinAl vIzhththavanE – earlier, he had plucked a wood-apple fruit using a calf. Demons [sent by kamsan to kill krishNa] had entered the two objects, wood apple and calf. By throwing the calf at the fruit, krishNa hit one against the other and destroyed both [demons] of them. This is mentioned to show that he will destroy our enemies too like this.

enRan aLavanRAl yAnudaiya anbu – the affection that I have towards you has grown too big and I am unable to enjoy you due to this. You have to shrink the size of this love so that I can contain it within myself. AzhwAr is speaking like hanuman who said, as in SrI rAmAyaNam uththara kANdam 40-16 “snEhOmE paramO rAjan thvayi nithyam prathishtitha: bhakthiScha niyathA vIra bhAvO nAnyathra gachchathi ” (the deep affection that I have towards you is firmly stabilised in me.  My devotion towards you is also permanent. My thoughts do not go elsewhere). The mAl (affection) that emperumAn has towards AzhwAr is because of the affection that AzhwAr has towards him. AzhwAr is unable to contract that affection. emperumAn showed himself to AzhwAr. When emerpumAn told AzhwAr to carry out service to him with affection, AzhwAr is trying to sustain himself by saying what he had said at the beginning [of this prabandham] “anbE thagaLiyA ArvamE neyyAga

Alternatively, once love becomes excessive, isn’t the next stage having direct vision (sAkshAthkAram)! Hence, we can construe that AzhwAr is having direct dharSan of emperumAn by saying “thirukkaNdEn ponmEni kaNdEn” in the next prabandham.

periya pirAtti periya perumAL thiruvadigaLE SaraNam
bhUthaththAzhwAr thiruvadigaLE SaraNam
emperumanAr thiruvadigaLE SaraNam
nampiLLai thiruvadigaLE SaraNam
periyavAchchAn piLLai thiruvadigaLE SaraNam
jIyar thiruvadigaLE SaraNam
appiLLAr thiruvadigaLE SaraNam

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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