periya thiruvandhAdhi – 84 – vAzththi avan adiyai

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AzhwAr continues to fault his heart, in this pAsuram.

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

vAzhththi avan adiyaip pUppunaindhu nin thalaiyaith
thAzhththi iru kai kUppu enRAl kUppAdha pAzhththa vidhi
enguRRAyenRu avanai EththAdha en nenjamE
thangaththAnAmElum thangu

Word by Word Meanings

avan adiyai – the divine feet of that sarvESvara (lord of all)

vAzhththi – praising

pU punaindhu – offering flowers

nin thalaiyai thAzhththu – bow down your head (at his divine feet)

iru kai kUppu enRAl – if asked to fold your hands together [in the gesture of offering anjali]

kUppAdha en nenjamE – Oh my mind which will not fold the hands!

avanai – that sarvESvara

enguRRAy enRu – saying “where have you gone”

EththAdhu – without praying (with affection)

thangaththAnAmElum – if it is possible to sustain

thangu – sustain

pAzhththa vidhi – how terrible is the weight of the sins?


The pAsuram should be rephrased to vAzhththi avan adiyaip pUppunaindhu nin thalaiyaith thAzhththu iru kai kUppu enRAl kUppAdha en nenjamE! enguRRAy enRu avanai EththAdhu thangaththAnAmElum thangu, pAzhththa vidhi in order to get cogent meaning.

en nenjamE – Oh my heart which does not do anything in matters regarding emperumAn! AzhwAr, who had praised his heart in the 1st pAsuram saying mundhuRRa nenjE (Oh my mind which is preceding me) is saying this now, considering its nature of not involving with matters relating to emperumAn since time immemorial, before he sang the first pAsuram.

vAzhththi avan adiyaip pUppunaindhu nin thalaiyaith thAzhththu, iru kai kUppu enRAl kUppAdha en nenjamE – AzhwAr tells his heart “Oh heart who is not cupping your palms when I ask you to praise emperumAn, offer flowers to his divine feet, bow down your head to his divine feet and cup your palms in anajali posture!” Since his head and hands were under the control of his heart for a very long time, AzhwAr is referring to them as the head and hands of his heart.

avanai enguRRAy enRu EththAdhu thangaththAnAmElum thangu – Just as it is mentioned in thiruvAimozhi 6-8-5enguch chenRAgilum kaNdu” (seeking and seeing wherever emperumAn goes), AzhwAr tells his heart, “If you can sustain yourself without seeking emperumAn with fervour and praising him, do remain in one place and sustain yourself”

pAzhththa vidhi – how terrible that such a destiny is befalling us! Through this , we can either take it that AzhwAr is disgusted with himself since he keeps leaving emperumAn’s presence saying “I am unsuitable” or that he is disgusted with his twin deeds (of pApa and puNya) which are a stumbling block for him in attaining emperumAn. Since AzhwAr is saying vAzhththi and EththAdhu, we can consider these to belong to the faculty of speech and since he is saying pUppunaindhu and thalaiyaith thAzhththu we can consider these to belong to the faculty of action and that AzhwAr is instructing his mind that it is impossible not to involve with emperumAn with all the three faculties (of thought, speech and action).

We will move on to the 85th pAsuram next.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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