Sunday, August 28, 2011

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 45 (Vol # 5) Dated 28 Aug 2011

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 45 (Vol # 5) Dated 28 Aug 2011

(These e-mails are translations of talks given by PeriyavaaL of Kanchi Kaamakoti Peetam, over a period of some 60 years while he was the pontiff in the earlier part of the last century. These have been published by Vanadi Padippagam, Chennai, in seven volumes of a thousand pages each as Deivathin Kural. Toda y we are proceeding from page No 275 of Vol 5 of the Tamil original. The readers may note that here in 'man/he' includes 'woman/she' too mostly. These e-mails are all available at updated constantly)
Guru Vandana is Amirtam & Guru Nindana is Poison.
144. ‘Prasna Uttara Ratna Maalika’ is one of the many creations of our AachaaryaaL. In it, he himself raises many of the questions that are likely to occur to a student and gives answers to them. One of the questions is, ‘Kim visham?’ meaning ‘what is poison?’ The answer to that is, ‘avadeeraNaa gurushu’ meaning, ‘to show disrespect to the Guru is poison’! The opposite of that is to do Namaskaara with respect, is the nectar of eternal goodness. Repeating the Prasnottara Maalika Stotras within himself, PeriyavaaL says, like the question on poison, a little later another question occurs as to what is Amirtam? Instead of simply Amirtam, the question is ‘what is nectar like for the ears?’ ‘Paathum karNaanjalibhi: kim Amrutam?’
145. The ears are like the cup capable of being used for drinking, isn’t it? What can be received in that cup, drunk and sent to the heart straight? The answer is ‘sad Upadesa:’, ‘the good advices (given by Guru) are like the nectar’. Instead of asking generally as to what is Amirtam, when the question if specifically worded as, what is the nectar for the ears, there is a very delectably pleasing thing there! What did we see earlier? We noted that to be disrespectful towards the Guru is the poison of self destruction. So the opposite of that is nectar. So if Guru nindana is poison, automatically Guru vandana is Amirtam. We thought so, so has AachaaryaaL opined, which can be easily discerned by even a baby! So AachaaryaaL has evidently concluded that there was no need to mention the obvious corollary! Later he did wish to speak about the ‘sad upadesh’ by the Guru and so thought of the question as to what will be the nectar for the ears!
146. Instead of saying ‘karNamrutam’ – that is nectar for the ears, he said, the nectar that can be drunk by the goblets of the ears, ‘karNaanjali’! The word ‘anjali’ otherwise means Namaskaara, isn’t it? Like a flower the mind when it is focussed in devotion, the hands automatically join in a posture of ‘anjali’. At that time the hands are in the shape of a flower bud. This in other words is Guru Vandanam only. This anajali of a Namaskaara is like nectar for the life of a devotee. What is most pleasant for the KarNa Anjali is the Sad Upadesa of the mentor, guide and philosopher that is the Guru!
147. As we move from one noble idea to another, as we analyse the questions and answers of the Prasna – Uttara – Maalika; there is one more that comes out as a matter of ‘durita uddharaNa’. As we pull out an idea from deep inside, it is ‘uddharaNa’, as I told you earlier isn’t it? In the early part of that scripture, is the question, ‘kim upaadeyam?’ – meaning ‘what is worthy of our acceptance’? The answer is – ‘Guru Vachanam’! Then is the question, ‘Ko Guru:’ meaning, ‘Who is the Guru?’ The reply is slightly long – ‘adhigata tattva:, sishya hitaaya udhyata: satatam’. The one who has learnt and comprehended the meaning of the principles and known the practical applicability of those ideas in real life – that is ‘adhigata tattva:’. Now comes our subject of ‘duritoddharaNam’. Being ‘adhigata tattva:’, he is also, ‘sishya hitaaya udhyata: satatam’. That means – ‘satatam’ – forever; ‘sishya hitaaya’ – for the benefit of the disciple; ‘udhyata:’ – is sincerely and seriously persevering! It is what I have already told you in other words. The Guru is one who has mastered the Saastraas, understood and completely absorbed all the delicate and intricate principles. Then he is forever working hard to inculcate those ideas in the disciple, like a mother does for feeding the child, seriously and sincerely persevering. In the Kanaka Dhaaraa Sthava he has used the same combination of words as ‘durita uddharaNa udhyataani’ as being the fruits of doing Namaskaara-s to Maha Lakshmi!
148. Amongst the many fruits of the act of Namaskaara, sincerely trying to pull out the tendency of sinfulness is the most important one. Other fruits of that act of Namaskaara are quite easily obtained, such as getting wealth, sensual pleasures and power to rule are more like the by-products. The release from sinfulness is what is obtained after much effort – ‘udhyata:’. He did not use this word ‘udhyata;’ for ‘sampath karaaNi’ and ‘sakala Indriya nandanaani’. Then ‘saamraajya daana nirataani’ – rule over a kingdom is ‘nirata:’ – as easily and happily as being involved in a game. Thus after finishing these worldly benefits, comes ‘udhyataani’, to pry out the sinful tendencies imbedded over generations of our many life times! It is not so easy even for the act of Namaskaara, as indicated by AachaaryaaL.
149. The intention was not in any way to undermine the power of Namaskaara, that the word ‘udhyataani’ has been used only for removal of sinfulness, but only to emphasise the deep rootedness of our sinful tendencies. Here in ‘Prasna Uttara Ratna Maalika’, he says that the Guru is trying his level best (udhyata:) for the disciple’s ‘hitam’. What is ‘hitam’? Disciple’s welfare is ‘hitam’ and that is to offset and annul the effects of his past Karmas over many life times of existence. For ‘samsaara nivrutti’ there is no other method. Till that happens, one goes on through endless cycles of birth and death. MaNikka Vaachagar says that he has gone through life many times before as, ‘grasses, weeds, worms, trees, many animals, birds, snakes, stones, human beings, ghosts, ogres, Rishis, divine beings and so have gone through many manifestations amongst the flora and fauna and so am tired and worn out’! I quote – ‘pullaai, poodaai, puzhuvaai, maramaagi, pal virugamaagi, paravaiaai, paambaagi, kallaai, manidaraai, peyaai, ganangalaai, val asuraraagi, munivaraai, devaraai; sella ninra taavara sangamthuL ellaap pirappum pirandu iLaiththen emperumaan’! ‘Samsaara nivrutti’ is to break through this endless cycle!
150. The end purpose for which the disciple finally reaches the Guru, that everlasting happiness can only be attained when he finally extricates himself from this cycle of repeated births and deaths. For that he has to loosen himself from the clutches of Karma and its effects. Karma nivrutti is paapa nivrutti and that is ‘duritoddharaNam’. The same AachaaryaaL who said that the power of Namaskaara actively ‘relieves and raises the doer from sins’, also said that the Guru is arduously and continuously persevering for the welfare of the disciple; meaning thereby the action of the Guru is similarly an act of ‘duritoddharaNam’! The Namaskaara-s that we do instigates Guru’s power of Anugraha that ferrets out the deep rooted sinful tendencies from the disciple.
151. In practice, we have to go to Maha Lakshmi for wealth, sensual pleasures and power of governance and for ‘paapa nivrutti’ we have to approach the Guru. Whatever AachaaryaaL said while praying to Maha Lakshmi, we should suitably adapt in our prayers to our Guru. We should be telling him, “Sir! You, who are ever tirelessly persevering for our ‘durita uddharaNa’, please grant that the Namaskaara-s that we do to you may be our permanent asset.” Thus, be repeatedly prostrating ourselves before him, we should get the golden shower of his Anugraha (kanaka dhaaraa), happily and become rid of sins, as light as a feather!
152. AachaaryaaL’s exclamation of ‘Mata’ should be changed to ‘Guro’ and say, “We do not need anything more. To be ever grateful to you by Namaskaara-s may become our eternal property, ‘na anyaani’. Let this body be laid on the ground and our hearts on your lotus feet. There is no other greater asset than this Anugraha that we get by this act of Namaskaara.” So we say again and again, ‘tasmai sri gurave nama:’.



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