thiruvAimozhi – 9.3.1 – OrAyiramAy

SrI:  SrImathE SatakOpAya nama:  SrImathE rAmAnujAya nama:  SrImath varavaramunayE nama:

Full series >> Ninth Centum >> Third decad

Introduction for this pAsuram

Highlights from thirukkurukaippirAn piLLAn‘s introduction

No specific introduction.

Highlights from nanjIyar‘s introduction

In the first pAsuram, AzhwAr mercifully says to his own divine heart “Isnt’ he nArAyaNa? He will certainly fulfil our desire”.

Highlights from vAdhi kEsari azhagiya maNavALa jIyar‘s introduction

See nanjIyar‘s introduction.

Highlights from periyavAchchAn piLLai‘s introduction

See nanjIyar‘s introduction.

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

See nanjIyar‘s introduction.


OrAyiramAy ulagEzhaLikkum
pEr Ayiram koNdadhOr pIdudaiyan
kArAyina kALa nan mEniyinan
nArAyaNan nangaL pirAn avanE


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

(As per differences in the meanings highlighted in phrases such as “sambharthA” [vyuthpaththi bhEdham] and by the different names themselves [nirvachana/nirukthi bhEdham])
Or – every divine name
AyiramAy – in thousand ways
ulagEzhu – all types of chEthanas [sentient beings] and achEthanas (insentient objects]
aLikkum – protecting
pEr – divine names
Ayiram – thousand
koNdadhu – having
Or – distinguished
pIdu – greatness
udaiyan – one who is having

(what is revealed through these names)
kALa kAr Ayina – dark like a black cloud
nan – spiritual
mEniyinan – having a divine form
nArAyaNan avanE – one who has the primary name, nArAyaNa, which is the root of all of those names
nangaL – for us
pirAn – benefactor

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

emperumAn is having thousand distinguished divine names where each one of them is protecting all chEthanas and achEthanas in thousand ways; he is our benefactor having a divine spiritual dark form like that of a black cloud, and has the primary name, nArAyaNa, which is the root of all of those names.

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

  • Or AyiramAy – Each divine name is capable of protecting in a thousand ways. As said in SrIvishNu purANam 6.5.74 “aiSvaryasya samagrasya vIryasya yaSaSSriya: …” (Since bhaga means having aiSvarya (opulence), vIrya (valour), kIrthi (fame), sampath (wealth), gyAnam (knowledge) and vairAgyam (detachment)) – by differences based on etymological interpretation of the word, there can be several ways of protection.
  • ulagu – While protecting, instead of doing it individually, he will protect everyone.
  • Ezhu – Even in that, instead of protecting one world only, he will protect all the worlds. emperumAn would only protect his devotees; such restriction is not there for his divine names.
  • aLikkum – There is a possibility for emperumAn to say as in SrI bhagavath gIthA 16.19kshipAmi” (I push them [in demoniac births]) on seeing their sins; but his names are naturally focussed on protection only.
  • pEr – Just one name is enough for protection.

When asked “How many such names does he have?” AzhwAr says,

  • Ayiram koNdadhu Or pIdu udaiyan – As said in mahAbhAratham “dhEvO nAma sahasravAn” (The shining emperumAn who has thousand names) just as saying “he has many cows”. Just as one who desires to feed everyone will provide abundance of rice and water, ISvara who thought about protecting the universe, has thousand names as tool for that. Recollect the words of parASara bhattar when kOyil AyththAn lost his son, came to him and fell at his divine feet, with great agony [kOyil AyththAn was a disciple of bhattar. He named his son as bhattar in memory of his AchArya. When that son died, he came to bhattar with great agony. At that time bhattar said “Don’t worry for the loss of your son who had my name” and made a sculpture of himself and gave that to kOyil AyththAn saying “Now, you keep this for you; I will be with you in this name and form” – this is to highlight that the divine name will be the refuge even in dire situations] One who has the greatness of having thousand names.

Even if his thousand names are spread out like cauvery river without shores, his form will be such that the names can be brought together, to be enjoyed.

  • kAr Ayina kALa nan mEniyinanAzhwAr thinks of emperumAn as cloud itself as the similarity is so close. Being similar to a very dark, black cloud; even this is said since one who steps in to a flooded river will search for a boat to sustain oneself [here AzhwAr compares emperumAn’s form to a dark cloud], when explaining emperumAn’s form, a similar object is highlighted; but if we look at his divine form, it has no match otherwise.

When asked “who is this person?” AzhwAr says

  • nArAyaNan – While gyAna (knowledge), Sakthi (ability) etc are all his qualities, gyAna (knowledge), Anandha (bliss), amalathva (being pure) etc are svarUpa niRupaka (that which identifies him); similarly, when asked “Who is pErAyiram koNdadhu Or pIdudaiyan?” – where it is said “innAn” (this person), AzhwAr says “nArAyaNan” – hence this name is his primary identity. Highlighting thousand names, there are three manthrams (nArAyaNa, vAsudhEva, vishNu manthrams) which are said to be primary being vyApaka manthrams (those manthrams which highlight his all pervasiveness); since the other two [vAsudhEva and vishNu] are now pushed along with the rest of the names, the predominance of this name can be understood. thirumangai AzhwAr said in thirunedundhANdagam 4andhaNar mAttu andhi vaiththa mandhiraththai” (sarvESvaran, the secret entity who is kept safely in the knots of vEdhAnthams which are the wealth of brAhmaNas), periya thirumozhi 8.10.3 “nin thiruvettezhuththum kaRRu nAn uRRadhum” (I understood after learning your ashtAksharam), periya thirumozhi 1.1.1 “nArAyaNa ennum nAmam” (the name, nArAyaNa) and periya thirumozhi 6.10.1 “namO nAraNam” (I worship nArAyaNa); nammAzhwAr too stated in thiruvAimozhi 1.2.10vaN pugazh nAraNan” (nArAyaNa, who is with auspicious qualities) and recited this name only throughout thiruvAimozhi. This is the path taken by vEdhams, AzhwArs and our AchAryas; even for us, there is nothing wrong in pursuing this even now; did we not discard the other two vyApaka manthrams because they were pursued by Sudhras et al [Saivas and others who were unfavourable towards bhagavAn] and others [such as mAyAvAdhis]? We have to only pursue the path taken by our AchAryas.
  • nangaL pirAn avanE – He is the only benefactor who will protect us. By the avadhAraNam (exclusivity indicated by “E” in avanE), it is indicated that it is not apt for us to pray for our result saying “kUvudhal varudhal seydhidAy“.

In the next article we will enjoy the next pAsuram.

adiyen sarathy ramanuja dasan

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