thiruviruththam – 80 – sIrarasANdu

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

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avathArikai (Introduction)

The sun had set and darkness engulfed fully. This pAsuram reflects the words of the nAyaki in distress due to that.

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

sIrarasANdu than sengOl silanAL seleeikkazhindha
pArarasoththu maRaindhadhu nAyiRu pAraLandha
pErarasE em visumbarasE emmai nIththu vanjiththa
OrarasE aruLAy iruLAy vandhu uRuginRadhE

Word-by-Word Meanings

sIr – very well
arasu – kingdom
ANdu – governing
than – his
sengOl – rule
sila nAL – some time
seleei – conducting
kazhindha – after spending
pAr – on the earth
arasE – with the kings
oththu – being equal [to them]
nAyiRu – sUriyan (sun)
maRaindhadhu – set
iruLAy vandhu – darkness, with its true form, came
uRuginRadhu – is contacting
pAr – earth
aLandha – one who seized
pEr – having a great quality
arasE – oh lord!
em – being in close proximity to us
visumbu – for paramapadham (SrIvaikuNtam)
arasE – oh one who is the lord!
emmai – us
nIththu – leaving
vanjiththu – through deceit
Or – being unique
arasE – oh one who became the king!
aruLAy – show your mercy

Simple Translation

The sUriyan (sun) set like kings who rule very well for some time and then leave. Darkness which followed that, engulfed me fully. Oh my lord who measured this earth! Oh the lord of paramapadham which is close to us! Oh the lord who deceitfully left me! You should show your mercy on me.


sIrarasu ANdu – ruling the kingdom well. When the pANdava king dharman left the country for vanavAsam (to dwell in the forest), the people of the country followed him with all their ritualistic paraphernalia, saying “if dharmaputhran does not rule the country we too would not stay here”; ruling the kingdom in such a noble way.

than sengOl silanAL seleei – not ruling for an insignificant period but for a long time, in an eminent way.

kazhindha pAr arasu oththu – ruling like respectable kings such as mANdhAthA (one of the kings in the ikshvAku dynasty, a lineage to which SrI rAma belonged)

maRaindhadhu nAyiRu – when sUriyan is around, it would appear as if nAyakan is around, comforting her. However, with sUriyan setting and night approaching, the sensory organs are focussing only on her separation from the nAyakan and are frightening her. In the daytime, each sensory organ would be involved in matters related to it and distress due to separation would not be intensely felt.

maRaindhadhu – sUriyan is common to all people; however, to the nAyaki, he was more significant since she was looking at his disappearance just like she would keep looking at her nAyakan when he was leaving her.

pAraLandha pErarasE – if sUriyan, who has been caught in the web of darkness, has to be redeemed, it would require the presence of the same entity who had redeemed earth from the clutches of mahAbali.

aLandha – just as he had measured the entire expanse of earth with his divine feet, couldn’t he measure this darkness too? Just as it has been mentioned in thiruviruththam 33 “iruLAr vinai keda” (to annihilate the sins of darkness) wouldn’t he be ruling to get rid of darkness?

pErarasE – he is  not one who carries out lowly and simple acts; all his activities are great ones.

em visumbarasE – after acquiring knowledge about matters relating to sarvESvaran, paramapadham (SrIvaikuNtam) appears to be much closer to AzhwAr than samsAram. Just as it has been mentioned in thiruvAimozhi 6-8-1 “ponnulagu ALIrO” (AzhwAr tells the birds that he would give them SrIvaikuNtam itself to rule), AzhwAr had gifted SrIvaikuNtam as the first gift to those who were to unite him with sarvESvaran.

emmai nIththu vanjiththa OrarasE – thirukkurugaippirAn piLLAn would explain this by saying “As if he had crowned himself separately for the two vibhUthis, it appears that he had taken over this vibhUthi only to separate me and to destroy me”. bhattar would explain this by saying “When he separated from me, he had said ‘I will not leave you’; once he separated me from him, he seemed to say ‘Who can equal me in this nature?’ It appeared as if he had coronated himself separately for this behaviour saying ‘There is none to equal me in dismissing those who will not separate’ ”

aruLAy – when nothing exists, there will be none asking for mercy to be showered. Those who are in paramapadham will not desire anything since they are deeply engaged with the qualities of sarvESvaran; those who are in samsAram will sustain themselves only through food, water etc. Could he not shower his mercy on someone who, staying here, is in the status of those who are in paramapadham? Those in paramapadham would be fully devoted to enjoying the auspicious qualities of sarvESvaran while those in samsAram would be fully devoted to SabdhAdhi vishayam (matters relating to sensory perceptions such as sound, touch etc). sarvESvaran has to shower his mercy on samsAris who have only knowledge about his auspicious qualities but not the experience with them.

What is the need to shower his mercy here, now?

iruLAy vandhu – instead of a tiger disguised as a cow, now the real tiger itself has come in the form of darkness. In other words, instead of fearing deluge, darkness has come to cause harm.   For regular samsAris, deluge would cause harm; for those in separation, darkness itself does that much of harm.

uRuginRadhE – darkness has come to envelop her fully. Before that, she wants to unite with sarvESvaran who is referred to in periya thiruvandhAdhi 26 as “iruLanna mAmEni” – the huge form of sarvESvaran which is dark.

svApadhESam (distinguished meaning): AzhwAr mercifully says that since the time of stay in samsAram creates ignorance, he wants sarvESvaran to redeem him soon from it.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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