nAnmugan thiruvandhAdhi – 44 – koNdu kudangAlmEl

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When AzhwAr was asked “Why do brahmA and rudhra worship him like this?” AzhwAr responds saying “When these knowledgeable entities lose their knowledge, is it not emperumAn who protects them by carrying out benefits for them?” He further says “ Even when you have the strength, go to thirumalai where he stands and worship him”

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

koNdu kudangAL mEl vaiththa kuzhaviyAy
dhaNdavarakkan thalai thALAl paNdeNNip
pOm kumaran niRkum pozhil vEngada malaikkE
pOm kumarar uLLIr purindhu

Word for Word Meanings

kumarar uLLIr – Oh those without senility!
paNdu – once upon a time
kudangAl mEl – on the lap
koNdu vaiththa kuzhaviyAy – with the infant kept
dhaNdam arakkan – rAvaNa, apt to be punished
thalai – ten heads
thALAl – with divine foot
kIRi – showing by scratching and counting
pOm – one who disappeared
kumaran – emperumAn who is always young
niRkum – the place where he stands
pozhil vEngadam malaikkE – to thiruvEngadam which is surrounded by orchards
purindhu pOm – go with desire


koNdu . . .  kumaran – This narrative has already been mentioned by poygai AzhwAr in mudhal thiruvandhAdhi 45AmE amararkku aRiyavadhuniRka ….vALarakkan nINmudiyai pAdhamaththAL eNNinAn paNbu” and by pEyAzhwAr in mUnRAm thiruvandhAdhi 77Ayndha arumaRaiyOn nAnmugaththOn nanguRangil vAyndha kuzhaviyAy vALarakkan Eyndha mudippOdhu mUnREzhenRu eNNinAn Arndha adippOdhu nangatkaraN”. When the demon rAvaNa was observing stringent penance toward brahmA, emperumAn took the form of an infant and lay in brahmA’s lap as if he were sleeping. In order to indicate to brahmA that this demon has ten heads and that he  will become a very cruel person on earth, emperumAn counted his ten heads by scratching rAvaNa’s ten heads with his divine foot. He also indicated to brahmA that he would incarnate later as SrI rAma and pluck his heads out. There is no reference to this narrative in ithihAsa (epic) or purANa (ancient sacred text which appears new every time) but since AzhwArs were granted faultless knowledge by emperumAn himself, they would have seen this.

koNdu kudangAl mEl vaiththa kuzhaviyAy – becoming an infant who will be kept on the lap

dhaNda arakkan . . . – he is the demon who is going to be punished. The meaning implied here is that emperumAn is hinting to brahmA that he is going to later sever the heads of the demon and punish him, by scratching his heads and counting them.

paNdeNNippOm kumaran niRkum – the place where emperumAn, who had at an earlier point in time counted the heads, shown to brahmA in order to help him and disappeared, took residence.

pozhil vEngdamalaikkE – to thiruvEngadamalai which is surrounded by orchards.

kumararuLLIr purindhu pOmAzhwAr implores samsAris to go to thiruvEngadam hills before they reach the age of senility when their bodies would bend forward and they would need a stick to move. He is asking samsAris to go there and worship when they still have strength in them, as it will become very difficult for them to climb the hills when they grow old.

kumararuLLIr – Just as it is mentioned in SrUthi (vEdhas) “bAlyEna thishtAsEth” (let the brahmagyAni (most knowledgeable) be like a child), kumararuLLIr could be construed to mean that those with knowledge would have the heart of a child.

pOm – go immediately.

We will take up the 45th pAsuram next.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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