Friday, December 09, 2011

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 93 (Vol # 5) Dated 06 Dec 2011

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 93 (Vol # 5) Dated 06 Dec 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. Today we are proceeding from page No 563 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)
412. Our AachaaryaaL was an epitome of self control and discretion. Sri Rama too remained like that only never revealing his true identity as the God in human form! Sri Krishna revealed his divine powers rather openly and explicitly. So these Avatara Purusha-s are seen to mostly hide their divine powers and reveal the same indirectly that too very rarely. There will be some occasion when they have to reveal their divine origin. Even then, so as to guard the purpose of Avatara, they may stop at some indirect hints. Such an event occurred in the case of our AachaaryaaL.
413. His Guru, Govinda Bhagawat PaadaaL had been told by Vyaasa, “Easwara himself is to come down as an Avatara and he would become your student. As per the normal customs and traditions of life in this sub-continent, you have the enviable task of giving Upadesa to God himself! So better be prepared!” Accordingly Sankara as yet a child came to Govinda Bhagawat PaadaaL. He wanted to ascertain if he is Easwara Avatara and so asked him, “Who are you?” Baala Sankara replied with a poem of ten stanzas known as Dasa Slokee, in which he said, “You, me, him and that is all the same Brhmam only isn’t it? Knowing this I remain as the Brhma Swaroopa!” If he claims himself to be the Ganagadhara and Jatadhara of Kailasa it may sound presumptuous, he thought. However there is a tradition to call the Brhmam as ‘saantham, sivam and adwaitam’ as given in the Upanishad. So, instead of saying ‘aham brhmaasmi’ one could say ‘sivoham’! So he ended each stanza with “tat eko avasishta siva: kevaloham”. Govinda Bhagawat PaadaaL understood him to be the same as predicted by Vyasa Bhagawan and maintaining the Guru –Sishya relation he did the Upadesa to his new student. Let us go back to our story of how DakshiNa Murthy becoming the Avatara Sankara, where we left off!
414. Parameswara as the DakshiNa Murthy was sitting quietly under the Banyan tree waiting to play his part in the re-establishment of Dharma and Adwaita; but, waiting for the two petitions to reach him as per tradition. One from the Devas to move him from his heavenly abodes and then the suitability of the – would – be – parents here on earth. In our land sometimes there are droughts and sometimes there are floods or some such problem. The federal or central power would already be concerned about what is to be done. Still he waits for a report from the governor or the concerned minister, isn’t it? Similarly to give report on the deteriorating conditions existing on earth, Brhma with other official Deva-s came to the ‘vata vruksha moole’ where Swami DakshiNa Murthy was seated.
415. Poorva Aachaarya Parampara. Before covering the story as to how Swami came as an Avatara, let us first get to know a little bit about the one who was his Guru Govinda Bhagawat Paada and his Guru Gowda Paada. For the people who are running this worldly life, we talk about the first Rishi amongst his forefathers as the Gothra in which he is born. That Rishi’s son and grandson would also be traditional Guru-s in that lineage. So customarily, three Rishis names are mentioned while introducing ourselves in Sanskrit when we do Namaskaaram to elders as ‘thraiyarsheya’. In Sri Vatsa Gothra they are said to have had five Rishis leading the group and so their self introductory Namaskaaram mentions the names of five Rishis starting from Bhargava as ‘panchaarsheyam’. There are one or two Gothas which mention only one Rishi’s name as ‘ekarsheyam’. So after doing Namaskaara, you introduce yourself to your elders whom you have met, telling the names of the (one, three or five) Rishi-s as ‘paravaram’ and then say that ‘I am from so and so Gothra, so and so Sutra and Veda Shaaka with so and so name! But a Sanyaasi who has left his family is not required to do ‘abhivaadanam’. So also while doing Namaskaara to a Sanyaasi, others are not required to give their introduction with ‘pravaram’ and ‘abhivaadanam’ as he is to look at the whole world as nothing else but Brhma Swaroopa and any Namaskaara by anybody is to be passed on to God almighty by saying “Narayana, Narayana”, instead of allowing it to boost his ego in any way!
416. There is one ‘pravaram’ like this giving the names of the earliest of one’s forefathers. There is another ‘pravaram’ told to the bride and bride-groom, as well as the assembled audience, in which the last three generation of elders names are added (after the first one or three or five Rishi-s names as per tradition) saying the boy or girl respectively happens to be great grandson or great granddaughter of so and so; grandson or granddaughter of so and so and the son or daughter of so and so. This is more like a public announcement to the society. When it comes to Sraardam and Amavasya (New Moon) Tarpanam to the Pithrus, it is done only for the last three generation of departed souls. Our AachaaryaaL after having been a Brhmachari has become a Sanyaasi. At that time he had a Gothra Pravaram. That is said to be Aathreya Gothram. His father’s name is Sivaguru and grand father’s name is Vidyadirajar.
417. For our AachaaryaaL who spent three fourths of his 32 years as a Sanyaasi, the names of his forefathers are not very important. What is more important is another ‘Pravaram’ that is the Poorva Aachaarya Parampara, of his Guru, Parama Guru, Parameshti Guru and Paraapara Guru. Let us look at this. Though the Aadi Guru is DakshiNa Murthy, as he did not explicitly do any Upadesa, starting from Maha Vishnu who has overtly done Upadesa, there is a slokam which talks of the Brhma Vidya Guru Parampara. Starting from Parama Siva leaving Maha Vishnu, is a sloka which starts off with, ‘Vande Guru Paramparaam’. In that system the first Guru is Parama Siva then the centre is our AachaaryaaL then the name of one’s own Guru is mentioned, whosoever it happens to be, saying obeisance to all the Guru-s who happen to be occurring inbetween: “sadasiva samaarambaam snkarachaarya madhyamaam I asmat aachaarya paryantaamvande guru paramparaam II”. I was going to talk to you about that sloka which lists all the four disciples of our AachaaryaaL in which there is no mention of the silent Siva and starts with Maha Vishnu and Brhma.
418. It was Maha Vishnu who gave the Vedas to Brhma. With the Mantras in the Vedas, Brhma created the worlds, as per the PuraNas. Within the Vedas as the end portion of those very Vedas are the Upanishads called the Head of the Vedas or ‘Sruti Siras’; in which are contained the information about how to escape from the vicious cycle of the birth and death of this Srishti and attain to Moksha through Brhma Vidya and Adwaita Vedaanta! Thus Maha Vishnu becomes the first and Brhma the second Guru as having learnt the Vedas from MahaVishnu. The lineage goes on from father to son including Vasishta, Shakti, Parasara, Vyaasa till Sukha. Sukha remained a Naishtika Brhmachari and so starts the Guru Sishya Parampara from him! So after Sukha it is Gowda Paada then Govinda Bhagawat Paada, both Sanyaasi Gurus ending in our AachaaryaaL. Of course it does not end there. His four important disciples are listed in the sloka, through them bringing us directly to the present one, expressing our gratitude and obeisance to them all! The sloka goes as follows:- “narayanam, padma bhuvam, vasishtam, saktim cha, tatputra parasaram cha, I vyasam, sukham, gowdapadam mahaantam, govinda yogeendram, ataasya sishyam II sri sankaraachaaryam, ataasya padma paadam cha, hastaamalakam cha sishyam I tam totakam, vaartikakaaram, anyaan asmat guroon santatam aanatosmi II”
419. Normally in the Pravaras having mentioned the first three names of the Rishis, then leaving aside thousands of forefathers that have been there for many generations, the last three names of great grandfather, grandfather and father only are mentioned. But in the above mentioned Pravara, not leaving anybody, it has been brought down up to and including the four main disciples of our AachaaryaaL! Then there could be a gap when we add our own immediate Guru. There is no gap from the very beginning till the four disciples of Avatara Sanakara! This statement of mine could lead to a question, naturally. Maha Vishnu gave Upadesa to Brhma before all creation. Then after many Yugas or even many Chatur Yugas after crores of years we are talking about our AachaaryaaL taking Sanyaasa Upadesa from his Guru some 2,500 years before now! Then how can you claim that there have been only nine generations of Gurus in between?
420. Vasishta, Parasara, Vyasa and such are not like us with a life time of 100 years or less! Vasishta as one of the Rik Veda Rishis was the Kula Guru for all the kings of Surya Vamsa. About such people it is anathema to be asking questions about their age! Till Sukha the Guru Parampara had such PuraNa Purushas that they could see off Yuga after Yugas! Some of them could have been just immortal. Gowda Paada and Govinda Paada as later day Gurus still being Yogeswaras, could have lived for many hundreds of years. Instead of being PuraNa Purushas and or mythical personalities, they were more like historical personalities. Anyhow their stories are also related to Aadi Sesha, Patanjali and such PuraNa Purushas that they will be full of interesting surprises and events. Let us have a quick look at them!
(To be continued.)



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