periya thirumadal – 83 – mannum kadanmallai

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mannum kadanmallai mAyavanai vAnavartham
senni maNichchudaraith thaNkAL thiRalvaliyaith`                                            120
thannaip piRar aRiyAth thaththuvaththai muththinai
annaththai mInai ariyai arumaRaiyai                                                                  121

Word by word meaning

kadal mallai mannum mAyavanai – the amazing entity who has taken permanent residence at thirukkadanmallai (present day mahAbalipuram)
vAnavar tham senni maNi sudarai – one who is radiant as the prime jewel for nithyasUris
thaNkAl thiRalvaliyai – the hugely powerful entity who has taken residence at thiruththaNkAl
thannai piRar aRiyA thaththuvaththai – one whose nature cannot be known by others (who are not under the shadow of his divine mercy)
muththinai – one who is like a pearl
annaththai – one who incarnated as a swan
mInai – one who incarnated as a fish
ariyai – one who incarnated as hayagrIva (horse face, human body)
arumaRaiyai – one who has the vEdhas (sacred texts) as his form


mannum kadal mallai mAyavanai – the amazing entity who is shining well at thirukkadal mallai since it is an abode which is very dear to his follower. emperumAn is reclining there on the floor, leaving aside the inseparable ananthAzhwAn (AdhiSEshan).

Who is the entity who is lying on the floor like this, as if he is without anyone?

vAnavar tham senni maNichchudarai – he is the head of nithyasUris who are tireless. He shines on their head as an ornament. Was he not referred to as “amarar sennippU” (the flower on the heads of nithyasUris)?

thaNkAl thiRalvaliyai – one who is shining with valour and strength which will enable him to win over everyone, at the divine abode thiruththaNkAl by shining brightly as the epitome of valour and strength.

thannaip piRar aRiyAth thaththuvaththai – the supreme being who cannot be known by anyone unless he manifests himself to such a person. vEdhas said of him “yamEvaisha vruNuthE thEna labhya:” (this supreme being can be attained only by one who he (the supreme being) has thought of in his mind). He is such that when he makes himself easily approachable and remains as a simple entity, people such as SiSupAla et al, without knowing his greatness, speak of him in low terms which will singe the ears of those who hear them, just as emperumAn himself said in bhagavath gIthA 9-11param bhAvamajAnantha:  avajAnanthi mAm mUdA:” (fools, not knowing my greatness, despise me).

muththinai – one who has a cool, comfortable divine form such that his followers can don him [as an ornament].

annaththai mInai ariyai – when brahmA lost vEdhas to the demons madhu and kaitaba, emperumAn incarnated as hayagrIva (horse face and human body), killed them, incarnated as fish, seized the vEdhas, and incarnated as swan and instructed the vEdhas [to brahmA]. ari – horse.

What is the reason for taking such efforts for vEdhas?

arumaRaiyai – he himself is the vEdhas. Just as he mercifully said in bhagavath gIthA 15-15vEdhaiScha sarvairahamEva vEdhya:” (only I am known through all the vEdhas).

In the next article, we will discuss the next part of this prabandham.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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