thiruviruththam – 54 – vIsum siRagAl

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

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avathArikai (Introduction)

In the previous pAsuram, a lady who was going that side said “fan her with any material [related to emperumAn] even if it is the soil [from which his divine thuLasi had sprouted]” However, there was no need to do anything like that. It appeared that from her words and activities, one would know that she is conscious. When a person is afflicted with deep hunger, he would be able to tolerate it if he were asleep. However, it is not possible to bear that hunger if he were awake. In the same way, since she was unconscious in the previous pAsuram, it appeared to be normal. She had forgotten him for sometime. Since she is awake now, she can sustain herself only if someone comes from there [from the nAyakan] or someone goes from her side as a messenger to him and to await his arrival. It did not appear that anyone would come from there. From her side, there was none who could walk to his place. She is sending beetles which are near her, to go as her messenger to him.

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

vIsum siRagAl paRaththIr viNNAdu nungatkeLidhu
pEsumbadiyanna pEsiyum pOvadhu ney thodu uNdu
Esumbadiyanna seyyum emmIsar viNNOr piRAnAr
mAsinmalaradikkIzh emmaichchErvikkum vaNdugaLE

Word-by-Word Meanings

viNNOr – for nithyasUris
pirAnAr – being their lord
ney – ghee
thodu – stealing
uNdu – eating it
Esumbadi – such that (enemies) ridicule
anna – activities like that
seyyum – one who carries out
em Isar – being  our swAmy, his
mAsu il – without any fault
malar – like a soft flower
adikkIzh – under [his] divine feet
emmai – us
sErvikkum – having the ability to take us [there]
vaNdugaLE – Oh beetles!
vIsum –  spread out
siRagAl – with wings
paRaththIr – you are flying
nungatku – for you
viNNAdu – paramapadham which is in paramAkASam
eLidhu – will be easy (and natural)
pEsumbadi – whatever is to be spoken (there)
anna – those words
pEsiyum pOvadhu – should speak (in our presence)

Simple Translation

Oh beetles! You have the capability to take us under the faultless, flower-like soft divine feet of sarvESvaran who was spoken of derisively after he stole and ate butter from the houses of those who were in thiruvAyppAdi (SrI gOkulam) and who is the lord of nithyasUris. You are flying with widespread wings. It will be easy for you to reach paramapadham where he dwells. Please tell us the words which you are going to tell there.


vIsum siRagAl – The term vIsugai refers to swaying, speed and being widespread.

siRagAl paRaththIr – she says that she has to walk since she does not have wings. That is why she swooned, thinking of him, as in thiruvAimozhi 7-2-4 “itta kAl itta kaiyaLAy” (legs and hands are immovable)

viNNAdu nungatku eLidhu – The moment they take to the skies she thinks that they can fly all the way to paramapadham. She is firm that paramapdham is above only, just as it has been mentioned in nAchchiyAr thirumozhi 10-2 “mElulagangaLin mIdhu pOy” (going beyond the worlds above).

nungatku eLidhu – paramapadham is easy for you to reach. It is difficult only for us! She feels that all those who could fly would be able to reach paramapadham.

pEsumbadi anna pEsiyum pOvadhu – please tell us what you are going to tell him and others who are there.

ney thodu . . . – despite being the lord of the inexhaustible nithyasUris, he incarnated on this earth. He felt that he could not sustain himself without materials such as milk, curd, butter etc which have had the touch of herd-girls who were very affectionate towards him. He had to steal them since they were not easily accessible to him and ate them; he was derided by people like SiSupAlan et al who were inimical to him, because of such acts.

emmIsar – he has the eminence of being the controller of nithyasUris; at the same time, he has the simplicity to consider that he could not sustain himself without materials connected with his followers; with these qualities, he made me to exist exclusively for him.

mAsin malaradi – his divine, soft feet which are without any fault. It is not that he goes to someone only after that person sends him a messenger since he had not gone to that person, saying “Oh, I forgot completely”. Even if someone were to send him a message, he would put the words in the messenger’s mouth.

The vyAkyAthA explains the SlOkam 40-3 in SrI rAmAyaNam sundhara kANdam “yathA tham purusha vyAgram gAthrai: SOka abhikarSithai: | samspriSEyam sakAmA aham thathA kuru dhayAm mayi ||” (due to grief, my form has become very enervated. I wish to embrace that tiger among men, SrI rAma. Show mercy on me and fulfil my desire) [this SlOkam tells how sIthAppirAtti informs hanuman about her condition and her desire, so that he could take that message to SrI rAma]

yathA tham purusha vyAgram – I don’t have to think that time has passed and that I have to tell him something to make him do it. He is like a male tiger who is capable of carrying out whatever he thinks of, the moment he thinks about it.

gAthrai: – You could see that my physical form is becoming emaciated. It is not that I wish to get rid of this form, attain a new form and then go to him. I want to embrace him with this emaciated form itself.

sa kAmAham – I will not remain like him uttering words such as “If you come to the forest, I will not go; if you are lost, I will not search for you”

thathA kuru dhayAm mayi – even when there is no reduction in his power, I have not seen it coming up to me. With your mercy, you should make it happen for me

emmaich chErvikkum vaNdugaLE – Aren’t you the beetles who feel that you would realise your svarUpam (true nature) only if you unite me with him?

svApadhESam (distinguished meaning): AzhwAr is conveying his distress in separation to sarvESvaran’s divine heart through the mode of sending messengers.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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