thiruchchandha viruththam – pAsuram 69 – kANilum urupppolAr

SrI: SrImathE SatakOpAya nama: SrImathE rAmAnujAya nama: SrImadh varavara munayE nama:

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avathArikai (Introduction

Some people asked “It was said in the last pAsuram ‘eththiRaththilum uyvadhOr upAyamillai’. How correct is this? By attaining other deities, one can attain mOksham” AzhwAr responds saying “It is difficult to attain other deities; even if one were to take refuge under other deities, they do not have the power to grant mOksham. Hence, attain emperumAn, who is the causative factor for the worlds and sever the correction with samsAram which is the result of engaging with sinful activities since time immemorial”

kANilum uruppolAr sevikkinAdha kIrththiyAr
pENilum varam thara midukkilAdha dhEvarai
ANam enRadaindhu vAzhum AdhargAL em Adhi pAl
pENi num piRappenum piNakkaRukka kiRRirE

Word-by-Word Meanings

kANilum – even if seen
uru – in their physical forms
polAr – being with wickedness
sevikku – for the ears
inAdha – unworthy of hearing
kIrththiyAr – being scornful
pENilum – even if one were to take refuge
varam – boons
thara – to give
midukkilAdha – being powerless
dhEvarai – celestial entities such as brahmA et al
ANam enRu – that they are protectors
adaindhu – taking refuge under them
AdhargAL – Oh those without any knowledge
em – for us, who are interested in mOksham
Adhi pAl – in the matter relating to emperumAn who is the causative factor
pENi – being affectionate
num – your
piRappu enum – termed as birth
piNakku – weed
aRukka kiRRirE – are you capable of severing?

Simple Translation

Even if one were to see the physical forms of celestial entities such as brahmA, rudhra et al, they will have wickedness; their fame will be unworthy of hearing for the ears; they are powerless to grant boons even if one were to take refuge under them. Oh those without knowledge who think that they are protectors and take refuge under them! Are you capable of severing your repeated births in samsAram by taking refuge under emperumAn, who is the causative factor for the worlds?

vyAkyAnam (Commentary)

kANilum uruppolArkANilum – since they are deities with excessive thamO guNam, they are not appropriate to be looked at. Hasn’t SAsthra too said that celestial entities such as rudhra et al, who have taken birth due to their karmas, are unfit to be worshipped by sAthvika entities? Two references have been quoted in the vyAkyAnam to buttress this: paushkara samhithai 36-257 “skandha rudhra mahEndhrAdhyA: prathishidhdhAsthu pUjanE l
gyAthvaivam bhakthisAngkaryam na kuryAdhEvamEva hi ll” (deities such as skandhan, rudhran, indhran et al have been proscribed (by wise people) from matters relating to worship; knowing this, let one not carry out devotion in this matter). SrI vishNu purANam 6-7-77 “anyEthu purushavyAgra chEthasO yE vyapASrayA: l aSudhdhAsthE samasthAScha dhEvAdhyA: karmayOnaya: ll” (Oh leader of people! Since celestial entities such as brahmA, rudhra et al, who are fit to be meditated upon through the mind, are born out of their karma (deeds), they are impure only). bruhadhAraNyaka upanishath 6-5-6 says “AthmA vA arE dhrashtavya: SrOththavya: manthavyO: nidhidhyAsithavya:” (AthmA (here the word AthmA refers to paramAthmA, the supreme being) is apt to be heard, to be thought of and to be meditated upon; it is apt to be seen). Unlike paramAthmA, these deities are not appropriate to be seen, as determined by upanishath.

uruppolAr – even though they are not apt to be seen, since they have excess of rajas and thamas guNas, even if they are seen, since their physical forms carry garland of skulls and bones, third eye, ash from burning bodies etc, their forms will be grotesque. Unlike the lotus like eyes of emperumAn which reflect the mercy in his divine mind, the physical forms of these entities will not attract beholders. Just as it has been mentioned in yajur vEdham 6-2 “rudhrO vai krUra:” (rudhra is cruel), the cruelty in their minds is reflected in their physical forms too.

sevikkinAdha kIrththiyAr – apart from being unfit to be seen, they are also without fame which is worth listening to, as brought out by the quote seen earlier from bruhadhAraNyaka upanishath 6-5-6. Even if one desires to listen to them out of affection for them, one would only hear statements which would make the ears to feel ashamed to hear, such as “he severed the head of his father brahmA; as a result of this, he roamed around in the three worlds, begging for alms [to rid himself of his sin]; he killed dhakshan, his father-in-law; he caused harm to the wives of sages”. These statements are not sweet such as “He brought back to life the dead son of sage sAndhIpani; he redeemed the sons of a vaidhikan from paramapadham, a place from which no one could come back to earth; he gave eminent benefits and protected those who had surrendered to him irrespective of whether they were monsters, demons, animals such as elephants et al”.

pENilum – these deities are not appropriate to be attained; the narrative of siRUththoNdar nAyanAr [one among 63 nAyanmArs, who are extolled by Saivaites) is evidence for this. Sivan, in the garb of kApAlikan (one belonging to a sect of worshippers of Sivan) came to the house of siRuththoNdar and told him and his wife that they should serve him their son, cooked. siRuththoNdar, accepting the order of the kApAlikan, asked his wife to cook their son. His wife wanted to keep the head of her child and hence cooked the remaining parts of the child, leaving aside the head. When the food was served, the kApAlikan said that something was missing and asked that part too to be included. She then cut the head too and cooked it, for him. This narrative has been included by sEkkizhAr in his periya purANam (which includes the narratives of all the sixty-three nAyanmArs). Thus, these deities are not fit enough to be attained. However, due to your affection for them, even if you wish to attain them, tolerating their physical forms which are grotesque and their ill-fame which will be harsh on the ears, it will not be similar to attaining emperumAn who does not expect anything from his devotees just as it has been said in bhagavath gIthA 9-26 which says “pathram pushpam phalam thOyam yO mE bhakthyA prayachchathi l thadhaham bhakthyupahrutham aSnAmi prayathAthmana: ll” (I partake of a leaf or flower or fruit or water which has been offered with devotion by a devotee (as if it is rare to get one)) and as said in bhagavath gIthA 9-2 “rAjavidhyA rAjaguhyam pavithram idham uththamam | prathyakshAvagamam dharmyam susukam karthum avyayam ll” (Among sciences and secrets, this [knowledge about emperumAn] is the most eminent; among those which nullify sins, this is the most superior; it manifests me directly; it is the means for attaining me; it is easy to practise; (even after giving the benefit) it does not get destroyed).

varam thara midukkilAdha dhEvarai – if they are intent on harming someone, they will have the power to destroy the world itself; they do not have the ability to grant the great benefit of mOksham. emperumAn, on the other hand, grants mOksham (SrI vaikuNtam) even to an apparition such as ghaNtAkarNan or a bird such as jatAyu. He praises those who come to him seeking something from him as magnanimous persons, as said in bhagavath gIthA 7-18 “udhArA: sarva EvaithE gyAnI thvAthmaiva mE matham” (These people are magnanimous; those who are with knowledge are like my AthmA (they sustain me); this is my opinion). emperumAn is praised as one who gives four purushArthams (ultimate benefits) with his four hands, just as it has been said in vishNu dharmam 43-47 “dhEvEndhras thribhuvanam arthamEka pingas sarvarthim thribhuvanakAncha kArthavIrya: l vaidhEha: paramapadham prasAdhya vishNum samprApthas sakalapalapradhO hi vishNu: ll” (Praying to vishNu, dhEvEndhran obtained the three worlds; kubEran obtained opulence; kArthavIryan obtained fame spanning the three worlds and king janaka attained paramapadham. Isn’t vishNu bhagavAn one who magnanimously gives everything to those who seek from him!). However, these deities do not have such greatness. When sage mArkaNdEya told Sivan “By your granting me the boon that I would remain at the age of sixteen forever, suffering in this samsAram has become a permanent feature for me; you must grant me mOksham such that I could get liberated from this samsAram”, Sivan told him “I do not have the ability to grant you mOksham; however, I will show you the way to attain it” and showed him emperumAn.

ANam enRu adaindhu – thus, even though these deities are not fit to be attained, people attain them since they are bewildered. ANam refers to protection. They are not like paramAthmA (emperumAn) who had said that he does not give up those who attain him, just as it has been said in SrI rAmAyaNam yudhdha kANdam 18-3 “mithrabhAvEna samprAptham na thyajEyam kathanchana l dhOshO yadhyapi thasya syAth sathAmEthadhagarhitham ll” (I will not ever abandon this vibhIshaNa who has come to me with the pathos of a friend; even if he has faults, let them be – it is not proper on the part of a good person to abuse if he [visbhIshaNan] were accepted). They are not capable of telling a suffering samsAri “Do not grieve” just as emperumAn had said in bhagavath gIthA 18-66 “sarvadharmAn parithyajya mAmEkam SaraNam vraja l aham thvA sarva pApEbhyO mOkshayishyAmi mA Sucha: ll” (Giving up all righteous paths (which are considered as means), along with their impressions, attain me alone as the means; I will liberate you from all your sins; do not grieve). This is because deities such as Sivan have excess of thamO guNam (quality of ignorance and laziness) in them.

vAzhum AdhargAL – Oh ignorant people who consider attaining such lowly deities as prosperity! The term Adhar refers to blind people as well as to ignorant people. They are not the people who have attained emperumAn and got rid of their fear just as it has been said in SrI rAmAyaNam ayOdhyA kANdam 60-20 “gajam vA vIkshya simham vA vyAgram vApi varAnana l
nAhArayathi santhrAsam bAhU rAmasya samSrithA ll (Since sIthAp pirAtti was under the shoulder of SrI rAma, she did not fear elephant or lion or tiger; her face blossomed looking at them), or as in SrI rAmAyaNam sundhara kANdam 34-31 “bAhuchchAyAm avashtabdhO yasya lOkO mahAthmana:” (that mahAthmA (great entity) under whose shoulder the entire world takes shelter) or as in thaiththirIya upanishath Anandhavalli 6 “yadhA hyEvaisha EthasminnadhruSyE’nAthmyE’nirukthE’nilayanE’bhayam prathishtAm vindhathE l atha sO’bhayagathO bhavathi l|” (That time when one attains, through devotion, this paramAthmA who cannot be seen, who does not have a (primordial) physical form, who cannot be described through words (that he is a celestial or human entity), who does not have a prop for himself, in order to get rid of fear from samsAram, one becomes fearless about samsAram).

em Adhi pAL pENi – being affectionate towards one who is the cause for us. What is the reason for calling one who is the causative factor for the whole world as being the cause for us? The reason for sarvESvaran to create the worlds is with a desire to creating mumukshus (those who are desirous of being liberated and reaching SrI vaikuNtam). Since it is only through entities such as himself [reference here is to AzhwAr] that one could say that emperumAn’s effort in creating the world has fructified, AzhwAr says mercifully that “emperumAn is the cause for us”.

num piRappu enum piNakku aRukkakiRRirE – are you capable of severing on your own, this bush called as birth in samsAram, which cannot be severed by anyone?

piNakku aRukkapiNakku – shrub or bush. The reason for calling birth as bush is due to the fact that for one who has got entangled in it, it is impossible to come out; it is difficult to live inside it; it is difficult to find out the start and end for it.

Next, we will take up the 70th pAsuram of this prabandham.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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