thiruchchandha viruththam – pAsuram 83 – mattulAvu thaN thuzhAy

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avathArikai (Introduction)

In the previous pAsuram, AzhwAr had said “For those with devotion, happiness will be felt without any distinction between this world and that world [samsAram and mOksham]”. A query was raised as to whether one can get happiness in this world too, since jithanthE SlOkam 1-4 says “samsAram sAgaram ghOram anantha klESa bhAjanam l thvAmEva SaraNam prApya nistharanthi manIshishaNa: ll” (The ocean of samsAram is the repository for innumerable sorrows and is very cruel. Those who have won over their minds will attain you as the means and cross this ocean of samsAram). AzhwAr responds in this pAsuram, saying “The happiness that one feels in parama padham will not match the happiness which one gets here, by carrying out devotion to your divine feet without any break”

mattulAvu thaN thuzhAy alangalAy pulan kazhal
vittu vILvilAdha bOgam viNNil naNNi ERinum
ettinOdu iraNdu enum kayiRRinAn manandhanaik
katti vIdilAdhu vaiththa kAdhal inbamAgumE

Word-by-Word Meanings

mattu ulAvu – honey being present continuously
thaN – cool
thuzhAy – full of thuLasi
alangalAy – Oh one who has garland!
pulan – apt to be seen
kazhal – your divine feet
vittu vILvu ilAdha – not giving it up and going elsewhere
bOgam – the comfort of mOksham
 viNNil – in parama padham
naNNi ERinum – even if one were to reach it
ettinOdu iraNdenum – known as devotion
kayiRRinAl – with a rope
manandhanai – heart
katti – tying it (such that it does not engage with other pursuits)
vIdilAdhu – without any break
vaiththa – kept at your divine feet
kAdhal inbam – for the ecstasy of devotion
AgumE – will it equal?

Simple Translation

Oh, one who has a garland of thuLasi from which honey is dripping continuously! Your divine feet are apt to be seen and cannot be given up for anything else. For those who have tied their hearts with the rope of devotion towards those divine feet, without a break, will the comfort of reaching parama padham equal the affection towards your feet?


mattulAvu thaN thuzhAy alangalAy – Oh one who has decorated with fresh thuLasi garland from which honey is continuously dripping! From this it is clear that only that entity who is donning thuLasi garland could be the supreme one and that this thuLasi garland is symbolic of one who rules over both leelA vibhUthi (materialistic realm) and nithya vibhUthi (spiritual realm). Also, the beauty which results from decorating with the garland is also indicated.

pulan kazhal vittu vIdilAdha bOgam – the enjoyment in parama padham of your divine feet, which are apt to be seen, which are constantly seen by nithyasUris and from which thoughts would not go to any other matter.

pulan kazhal – the divine feet which are seen; the opinion is that they are divine feet which are apt to be seen.

viNNil naNNi ERinum – even if one were to reach parama padham.

ettinOdu iraNdu enum kayiRRinAl – eight and two together will make ten, which is paththu in thamizh. The term paththu refers to bhakthi. To highlight his devotion towards emperumAn, AzhwAr is indirectly referring through eight and two. Since devotion binds one’s mind, he symbolises devotion with kayiRu (rope).

manandhanaik katti – the implied meaning is that mind, which is the head of five gyAnEndhriyams (senses related to knowledge, namely eyes, ears, nose, tongue and skin) and the five karmEndhriyams (senses related to activities such as hands, legs, speech and the two excretory organs), should be tied such that it does not go after other pursuits.

vIdilAdha vaiththa kAdhal inbamAgumE – the devotion kept at your divine feet, without any break, will be a source of comfort on its own, instead of being the means to attain mOksham. The opinion here is that the comfort of mOksham will not match the loving devotion carried out here which is the benefit by itself [instead of bringing in a benefit].

Next, we will take up the 84th pAsuram of this prabandham.

adiyEn krishNa rAmAnuja dhAsan

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