thiruviruththam – 95 – yAdhAnum Or Akkaiyil

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avathArikai (Introduction)

Instead of leaving sarvESvaran showing his inadequacy in either his devotional trance or inaptness in meditating on him, he bowed down to the divine feet of sarvESvaran since he created engagement in AzhwAr to be fully devoted to matters relating to him and distaste in worldly matters. vyAkyAthA narrates an event regarding nanjIyar with reference to this pAsuram. When parASara bhattar was in thirukkOttiyUr, one SrIvaishNava, rAmAnujadhAsar, approached him and asked him to mercifully explain thiruviruththam to him. bhattar told him “Due to my separation from perumAL (periya perumAL, SrI ranganAthan, at SrIrangam) I am in a state of distress and I am not in a frame of mind to say anything”. Turning to nanjIyar, bhattar told him “You please explain to him”. nanjIyar also started explaining thiruviruththam to him. Another person, vaLavan pallavatharaiyan, joined them in this. He was a follower of thirukkOttiyUr nambi (one of the AchAryars of SrI rAmAnujar).  When this pAsuram was about to be explained, vaLavan pallavatharaiyar was in tears. Looking at this, nanjIyar asked him “I have not started explaining this pAsuram. Why are you in this state already?” pallavatharaiyar replied “When thirukkOttiyUr nambi was instructing me about thiruviruththam, he had mercifully told me to recite this pAsuram in front of sarvESvaran everyday. I was reminiscing that”.  Hearing this, nanjIyar asked him “Could you recollect a few words which thirukkOttiyUr nambi had mercifully told you about this pAsuram?” pallavatharaiyar said “I do not remember that. All that I remember is reciting this pAsuram” nanjIyar felt very happy that thirukkOttiyUr nambi liked this pAsuram so much and spoke in praise of that for a few hours.

Let us go through the pAsuram and its meanings:

yAdhAnum Or Akkaiyil pukku angAppuNdum Appavizhndhum
mUdhAviyil thadumARum uyir munnamE adhanAl
yAdhAnum paRRi nIngum viradhaththai nal vIdu seyyum
mAthAvinaip pithuvai thirumAlai vaNanguvanE

Word-by-Word Meanings

uyir – jIvAthmA (soul)
munnamE – from time immemorial
yAdhAnum Or – in something or other
Akkaiyil – physical form
pukku – entering
angu – in that form
Appu uNdum – getting tied down to it (due to prArabdha karma (past deed which has started yielding result))
Appu avizhndhum – getting liberated from it (due to destruction of prArabdha karma)
mUdhu – being ancient
Aviyil – in the subtle form
(staying in svargam and naragam (heaven and hell))
thadumARum – will keep fluctuating
adhanAl – due to that repeated act
yAdhAnum – some matter (related to prAkrutham, the causative matter)
paRRi – holding on to
nIngum – moving away (from matter related to sarvESvaran)
viradhaththai – (my) vow
nal vIdu seyyum – one who liberated me
mAthAvinai – being affectionate like mother
pithuvai – being well-intentioned like father
thirumAlai – the consort of SrI mahAlakshmi
vaNanguvan – I will attain

Simple Translation

jIvAthmA (soul) has been, from time immemorial, entering some physical form, getting tied down to it, and at one point of time, getting liberated from it. It would then enter a subtle form and keep going to svargam and naragam. With that bondage (to that form) as the reason, it has been holding on to some matter or the other related to worldly pursuits and leaving matters related to sarvEScvaran. However, sarvESvaran made me give up my firm vow (to keep vacillating among these sates, mentioned here); he has been like a mother to me, being affectionate, and he has been like a father to me, being well-intentioned about me. I will attain such sarvESvaran.


yAdhAnum Or Akkaiyil pukku – entering some SarIram (physical form), and praising it as mamAyam dhEha: (this is an amazing form), even if it is a lowly form. Having taken such a form, due to firm bondage with it, an inability to leave that form and getting involved with it fully. Since it is referred to as Akkai, as per the root of the word dhEham which is dhiha upachayE, dhEham attains upachayam or growth. Thus, it keeps growing.

pukku – for chEthana (sentient entity), attachment to an insentient entity is not his own nature but comes out of karma (previous deeds). Thus, AthmA, a chEthana entity, enters a physical form which is achEtha entity.

angAppuNdum – due to his [chEthana’s] association with previous deeds and being habituated to it, he will get bonded to the physical forms. Despite knowing through the words of an AchAryan (teacher) or through SAsthras (religious texts) and through direct experience, that these [the physical forms) are lowly, wondering as to what he will do if he were to give up his forms, he will be unable to give them up.

Appavizhndhum – not knowing that his bondage with the physical form is due to his karma, he will be unable to get rid of it; once karma gets destroyed, the physical form will get annihilated.

mUdhAviyil – through this, he is reminiscing early times. The term Avi refers to prANan – vital  air. Since prANan is distinct from achith, the subtle form is now referred to as Avi. This is considered as an activity of prakruthi (primordial matter) and also as a part of prakruthi. This will keep following until liberation. It will help the chEthana in his movements and non-movements.

thadumARum – as described in panchAgni vidhyai (the journey of AthmA through five stages in its repeated cyle of births), the jIvAthmA will enter clouds [after svargam/naragam], enter earth through rains, enter foodfrains,  enter a chEthana’s form through intake of food and enter the womb of a lady during their union. In all these states, he keeps stumbling without being able to stay firmly in any place. During his journey, there will be places which are known as well as unknown to him.

uyir – the AthmA, which is full of knowledge and full of joy, and is permanent, suffers like this.

From when has this stumbling and existing been like this?

munnamE – this has been there from time immemorial.

adhanAl – since the association (with achEthana) has been there for a very long time, he thinks that the achEthana entity is his guide.

yAdhAnum paRRi – thinking that only matters other than those related to sarvESvaran should be attained; accepting all such matters without analysing their virtues and faults.

nIngum – only matters relating to bhagavAN are to be given up.

viradhaththai – even if some people instruct “Whatever you are holding on to are faulty. Only matters related to bhagavAn are apt to be held on to” and even if what they say are correct, I have taken a vow that I will give them up [matters relating to bhagavAn]. Just as sarvESvaran has taken a vow, as mentioned in SrI rAmAyaNam yudhdha kANdam 18-33 “Ethath vratham mama” (even if the person who comes to me is my enemy, I will not give him up; this is my vow), the jIvAthmA has taken a vow that he will give up sarvESvaran; just as rAvaNa had said in SrI rAmAyaNam yudhdha kANdam 36-11 “na namEyam” (even if I am split into two, I will not bow to someone; my body will only fall backward).

nal vIdu seyyum – removing the present situation and making me pray, as in thiruviruththam 1 inninRa nIrmai inyAm uRAmai – holding his divine feet and asking him to relieve me from this samsAram. Before developing an involvement with him, severing my interest in matters related to wordly pursuits.

mAthAvinaip pithuvai – the mother and father, who are not really our mother and father, are responsible for this physical form and for our being involved with samsAram. However, sarvESvaran is the one who relieves us from this. What is the need to mention both?

thirumAlai – since he is the consort of SrI mahAlakshmi,  as said in mahAbhAratham pithA mAthA cha mAdhava: – both father and mother are mAdhavan, the consort of SrI mahAlakshmi, he is mentioning both.

vaNanguvanE – it is not possible for us to carry out a beneficial act to sarvESvaran matching  his beneficial act towards us in creating a distaste in us for worldly matters and affection towards him. The only action that we can do is to submit the entity which was his, always (AthmA).

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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