Simple guide to dhivyaprabandham – Part 10 (upadhEsa raththina mAlai, thiruvAimozhi nURRandhAdhi)

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<< Part 9 (rAmAnusa nURRandhAdhi)

upadhEsa raththina mAlai

upadhEsa raththina mAlai is a wonderful work and from the name itself, we come to know that this is a mAlA/garland made with  upadhESas (Instructions). These upadhESas are compared to those like emeralds and rubies (rathnam). Hence the name, upadhEsa raththina mAlai.

upadhESa raththina mAlai is the essence of the rahasya grantham called SrIvachana bhUshaNam by Sri piLLai lOkAchAryar. He gave the essence of thiruvAimozhi as SrIvachana bhUshaNam and concludes that AchArya’s krupai/abhimAnam (grace) is everything for ujjIvanam (realizing the ultimate goal).

maNavALa mAmunigaL composed a brief and easy way to understand SrIvachanabhUshaNam as upadhEsa raththina mAlai, just to make it simple and relatable to everyone.

In the bhagavath gIthA, KaNNan emperumAn says, “sarva dharmAn parithyajya”- meaning: “give up all other means and just surrender unto Me”. emperumAn could have said this in the 2nd chapter itself, but he said it only at the end. bhagavAn started to explain what is AthmA, paramAthmA, karma yOgam, gyAna yOgam, bhakthi yOgam and so on and finally revealing to surrender to Him. Our AzhwArs and AchAryArs also follow the same by giving introductory information and then leading us to the ultimate knowledge.

mANavALa mAmunigaL in upadhEsa raththina mAlai begins with the introductory information such as AzhwArs’ divine place of birth, month and thirunakshathram and the significance of their appearance. Then, he outlines about AchaArya SrIman nAthamunigaL’s vaibhavam as he is one of the primary AchArya. Our sampradhAyam itself is highly revered as “rAmAnuja dharSanam” by namperumAL Himself. mAmunigaL describes how AchAryar rAmAnujar is the pinnacle of our sampradhAyam and it was because of him, our SrI vaishNava sampradhAyam progressed into great heights.He also highlights the order (kramam) of commentary work done on thiruvAimozhi.

The details of how Idu 36000 padi commentaries were given by nampiLLai which was documented by vadakkuth thiruvIdhip piLLai, then passed on to his disciple eeyuNNi mAdhavap perumAL for single point propagation through eeyuNNi padhmanApap perumAL, nAlur piLLai, nAlUr AchchAn piLLai, thiruvAimozhip piLLai and finally mAmunigaL. From vadakkuth thiruvIdhip piLLai, the knowledege was passed on to his son piLLAi lOkAchAryar. mAmunigaL wonderfully brings in piLLai lOkAchArya at the centrepoint as SrIvachana bhushaNam was bestowed by him.These are the introductory part of upadhEsa raththina mAlai.

mAmuni reinforces the greatness of Srivachana bhUshaNam. The meanings are dealt in detail by many pAsurams in this grantham.

pAsuram 61

gyAnam anuttAnam ivai nanRagavE udaiyan
Ana guruvai adaindhakkAl – mAnilaththIr
thEnAr kamalath thirumAmagaL kozhunan
thAnE vaikuNtam tharum


When one surrenders to an AchArya, who is full of true knowledge and conduct, SrIman nArAyana, who is along with thAyAr, will automatically grant entry into paramapadham to such a person.

pAsuram 64

than Ariyanaukkuth thAn adimai seyvadhu avan
innAdu thannil irukkum nAL – annEr
aRindhum adhil Asai inRi AchAriyanaip
pirindhiruppAr Ar manamE pEsu


When one is fully aware that the service to one’s AchArya (as long as he stays on earth) is the greatest benediction, how can one refrain from it and stay far away from him. Oh my mind, can you tell me how?

mAmunigaL has done all the service to his AchAryar until his AchArya ascended to paramapadham. Based on his AchArya’s orders, he moved to SrIrangam after that.

pAsuram 66

pinbu azhagarAm perumAL sIyar perundhivaththil
anbu adhuvumaRRu mikka AsaiyinAl – nampiLLaik
kAna adimaigaL sey annilaiyai nannenjE
UnamaRa eppozhudhum Or

In this pAsuram, mAmunigaL exhibits how the relationship between an AchArya and the Sishya should be. Example of nammpiLLai’s disciple pinbu azhagiya perumAL jIyar’s conduct towards his AchAryAr is highlighted, depicting the importance of utmost devotion one should have towards one’s AchArya’s divine form.

pAsuram 72

pUruvAchAriyargaL pOdham anuttAnangaL
kURuvAr vArththaigaLaik koNdu nIr thERi
iruL tharumA gyAlaththE inbamuRRu vAzhum
theruL tharumA dhEsiganaich chErndhu


One should surrender oneself to an AchArya and follow the conduct (anushtAnams) laid out by our pUrvAchAryas and lead a fulfilled life.

In the final pAsuram, as a pala Sruthi, mAmunigaL says – one who recites and comprehends about these pAsurams in their thoughts, will become the recipient of divine grace of yathirAjan, Sri rAmanujar Himself.

pAsuram 74 – by eRumbiyappA

mannuyirgAL ingE maNavALa mAmunivan
ponnadiyAm sengamalap pOdhugaLai – unnich
chiraththAlE thINdil amAnavanum nammaik
karaththAlE thINdal kadan


Oh you, who live in this material realm! Those whose heads get touched by the divine reddish lotus feet of mAmuni are assured to get entry to vaikuNtam as amAnavan (a nithyaSuri) is obliged to touch you and let you pass through.

This pAsuram is a glorification of mAmunigaL by eRumbiyappA. Unveiling the greatness mAmunigaL’s lotus feet, in the upliftment of the jIvas. mAmunigaL out of his divine mercy has brought out the details which are in the sUthram format of Srivachana bhUshaNam into an easy to understand pAsuram way in upadhEsa raththina mAlai.

thiruvAimozhi nURRandhAdhi 

thiruvAimozhi nUrrandhAdhi is a merciful composition of maNavALa mAmunigaL. irAmAnusa nUrrandhAdhi was present during the period of AchArya rAmAnujar which was given by amudhanAr. As there was no nURRandhAdhi for AzhwAr, mAmuni desires to compose thiruvAimozhi nURRandhAdhi. He wanted to make the grantham predominantly glorifying AzhwAr and simultaneously his prabandham as well.

In this wonderful composition, mAmunigaL has given the essence of one padhigam of thiruvAimozhi (which has 10 pAsurams) in one pAsuram of thiruvAimozhi nURRandhAdhi. To study and grasp thiruvAimozhi will surely take us a long time. mAmunigaL has blessed us by bestowing this grantham which shows an overview of AzhwAr’s state, attitude and feelings (bhAvam). This also outlines how thiruvAimozhi begins, how it cascades and how AzhwAr has completed the prabandham.

mAmunigaL set certain restrictions to follow while composing this grantham.

  • It should be in an andhAdhi format (as thiruvAimozhi is in andhAdhi [anthAdhi]) and should be short and easy to understand
  • nammAzhwAr’s thirunAmam and glories/vaibhavam should be mentioned in each pAsuram.
  • The commentaries from Idu 36000 padi by nampiLLai should be emphasized in a brief manner.

mAmunigaL’s thiruvAimozhi nURRandhAdhi follows the same format of andhAdhi , that is the word that ends in one pAsuram will be the beginning word for the next pAsuram – this is called andhAdhi.

nammAzhwar’s thiruvAimozhi begins with uyarvara and mAmunigaL’s thiruvAimozhi nUrrandhAdhi also begins with uyarvE. Bearing all these guidelines in mind, mAmunigaL has composed this amazing work called thiruvAimozhi nURRandhAdhi.

thiruvAimozhi begins with – uyarvaRa uyarnalam udaiyavan yavan avan, this first padhigam by nammAzhwar describes vEdhAntham which shows the parathvam of emperumAn in total of 10 pAsurams. emperumAn’s omnipotent nature, the SarIra and SarIri bhAvam and so on.

The challenge for mAmunigaL is to represent all these details in just 2 lines.

pAsuram 1

uyarvE paran padiyai uLLadhellAm thAn kaNdu
uyar vEdha nEr koNduraiththu – mayarvEdhum
vArAmal mAnidarai vAzhvikkum mARan sol
vErAgavE viLaiyum vIdu 

In this pAsuram, in the first two words, mAmunigaL has beautifully depicted the greatness and the state of emperumAn. All this has been seen directly by Azhwar who was blessed with blemishless knowledge graced by emperumAn himself. These words from nammAzhwar(mARan) will be the root cause for jIvas to attain mOksham.

mAnumigAL has grasped the in-depth knowledge of Idu vyakhyAnam by nampiLLai. Idu vyakhyAnam has 3 introductory parts: first, second and third Sriya:pathip padi and along with that, there is pravESam for every padhigam. This shows the eminence of maNavALa mAmunigaL and the significance of thiruvAimozhi nURRandhAdhi.


adiyen hEmA rAmAnuja dAsi
adiyen vidhyA rAmAnuja dAsi

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