thiruchchandha viruththam – pAsuram 73 – maram podha

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

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avathArikai (Introduction)

In the previous pAsuram, it was mentioned that “Only emperumAn is apt to be attained. Since brahmA and Sivan are badhdha jIvas (souls bonded in samsAram) they are not apt to be attained”. In this pAsuram, AzhwAr says that the consort of mahAlakshmi [emperumAn], in order to shower his mercy on samsAris, incarnated as a human being and that he is capable of granting mOksham (liberation) to brahmA, Sivan et al. Through this, AzhwAr mercifully brings out the difference between emperumAn, who is the lord of all celestial entities, and the other deities.

maram podhach charam thurandhu vAli vIzha munnornAL
uram podhach charam thurandha umbarALi empirAn
varanguRippil vaiththavarkku alAdhu vAnam ALilum
nirambu nIdu bhOgam eththiRaththum yArkkum illaiyE

Word-by-Word Meanings

munnornAL – in an earlier thrEthA yugam [an epoch which follows krutha yugam (1st epoch, lasting about 1.26 million years]
maram – seven ebony trees
podha – to be pierced
saram – arrow
thurandhu – shot
vAli – vAli [the monkey king]
vIzha – to fall down
uram – his chest
podha – to pierce
saram – arrow
thurandha – one who shot
umbar Ali – as the lord of celestial entities
empirAn – son of emperor dhaSarathan, and our lord, his
varam – distinguished
kuRippil – in the divine mind
vaiththavarkkalAdhu – other than those who have been kept
vAnam ALilum – even if one were to rule brahma lOkam (world) etc
yArkkum – for anyone
nirambu – without any deficiency
nIdu – permanent
bhOgam – the comfort of servitude
eththiRaththum – by any means
illaiyE – is not there

Simple Translation

emperumAn incarnated as the son of emperor dhaSarathan, during one of the thrEthA yugams. He pierced seven ebony trees with his arrow. He brought down vAli, by piercing his chest, with his arrow. Entities, other than those who he keeps in his distinguished divine mind, do not have any possibility of carrying out servitude, which is without any deficiency and which is permanent, even if they were to rule brahmalOkam etc.

vyAkyAnam (Commentary)

maram podhach charam thurandhu – shooting an arrow to pierce seven ebony trees in order to create confidence in sugrIva maharAja. Through this it is ascertained that emperumAn has the quality to remove any lingering doubt that one may have regarding his capability to protect.

vAli vIzha munnor nAL uram podhach charam thurandha – vAli had the strength to tie down rAvaNa to his tail and go all over the worlds. In one of the thrEthA yugams which had passed, emperumAn shot an arrow which pierced vALi’s chest and brought him down. There is a svApadhESam (inner meaning) given for this action of creating confidence in sugrIva and killing vAli – for those who are favourable towards emperumAn [they accept that he is the supreme entity and that he is the means for attaining him] and who do not have any quality which is unfavourable towards him, emperumAn gives them the desire to enjoy him. He removes all the hurdles such as ignorance, karma (effect of past deeds), past impressions, taste, connection with prakruthi (primordial matter) etc which come in the way of their enjoying him.

In the previous pAsuram, AzhwAr had said that other deities such as brahmA et al are varam tharamidukkilAdha dhEvar (incapable of giving mOksham). In this pAsuram, he shows that emperumAn is the exact opposite of those deities.

umbarALi – The term umbar would refer to nithyasUris who are permanent dwellers in the nithyavibhUthi (permanent or spiritual realm). Through this, it is implied that emperumAn, who takes such nithyasUris, who have no ignorance, under his wings as his servitors, also helps such lowly monkeys. Alternatively, it could also be considered that nithyasUris are those who realise the simplicity of emperumAn who removes the doubts in the minds of those regarding his ability to protect, by removing their enemies.

empirAn – through this act of protecting sugrIva, he won me [AzhwAr] over. Alternatively, the term umbar could be taken as referring to celestial entities such as brahmA et al. Then, the meaning for umbarALi empirAn could be taken as – through the act of protecting sugrIva, emperumAn is one who has won over both the celestial entities, who desire other benefits, and us [entities such as AzhwAr] who do not desire other benefits, without any distinction The verse uram podhach charam thurandha empirAn could be taken to imply that the help rendered by emperumAn to sugrIvan is the help rendered by him to AzhwAr.

varam kuRippil vaiththavarkku alAdhu – apart from those who have been given a place in the distinguished, divine mind of chakravarthith thirumagan (SrI rAma, emperumAn).

varam kuRippu – distinction for the mind is to consider only good biding for others.

vAnamALilum – even if they are distinguished with their supreme knowledge and rule over the worlds below and above the earth, such as brahmA et al.

niramba nIdu bhOgam – the experience which is without any shortcoming and which is permanent. In other words, the bhagavadh anubhavam (experiencing emperumAn) which occurs in mOksham due to paramabhakthi (ability to sustain oneself in the presence of emperumAn and giving up life in his absence), which is complete, which is vivid and which is permanent.

eththiRaththum yArkkum illaiyE – it is not that it is not present in brahmA et al who desire other benefits. Even for the most eminent entities who do not desire any benefit other than emperumAn, it will not occur without emperumAn’s mercy. It will not occur without his mercy whether one observes other means such as karma, gyAna, bhakthi yOgams (paths of deeds, knowledge and devotion, respectively) or one considers emperumAn who is readily available, as the means to attain him. Irrespective of whether one considers him as the benefit despite having supreme knowledge, and consider him as both the means and the ultimate goal or one considers him as the means and benefit since one does not have any knowledge, for everyone, his mercy alone is the means for attaining mOksham. The collective meaning of this pAsuram is that even for brahmA, Sivan et al who are in eminent positions, without the mercy of the son of dhaSarathan, there is no means for attaining the permanent mOksham.

Next, we will take up the 74th pAsuram of this prabandham.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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