DEIVATHIN KURAL # 96 (Vol # 5) Dated 13 Dec 2011
DEIVATHIN KURAL # 96 (Vol # 5) Dated 13 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 the last para on page No 584 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 http://Advaitham.blogspot.com updated constantly)
438. Everything is Maya, within that your dream is Maya, the transactions, stories, cinema, drama and the so called ‘reality shows’ are all Maya. In other words, the Gnaani who knows everything to be Brhmam need not go here, there or anywhere! Still, if he remains in one place, others will imagine wrong attachments that he belongs to that place, or that place belongs to him, or that he belongs to them and or they belong to him! To avoid such attachments the Gnaani roams about like a nomad. (Of course, Ramana Maharshi remained rooted to the ThiruvaNNamalai for some 54 years from 17 to 71 years of age till he dropped the mortal coil and exceptions prove the rule!)
439. Suka waited till he was able to move about and then he started out. Though Vyasa AachaaryaaL was a great Mahatma, he was not in the same stage like his son as though nailed to the Brahmi stiti. He was fully enshrouded by ‘putra vaatsalyam’ (love for his son). The son thought that he should not let this attachment grow on him. Once he permits ‘Upanayanam’ then the whole series of Adhyayanam, Samitaa Dhaanam, Bikshachaaryam and what not will get started! If we let this continue, father’s attachment will keep on getting reinforced. Though nothing may bind us, he is bound to get stuck. So I have to run away from this restricting influence of the household as early as we can. Of course he will feel unhappy with my separation, but more we postpone the parting of ways, greater will be the attachment and deeper the sorrow of separation. So, I have to make a clean get away this very moment itself. Thinking on these lines, as said in the sloka, Suka ran away – “yam pravrajantam anupetam apetakrutyam”!
440. If we go somewhere, we should be having some job there. The instant that job is done, we will carry on from there. You have all come here to listen to my talk. Will you keep sitting here after I have finished talking? You will go from here, isn’t it? Vyasa had the good luck of getting a Brhma Gnaani as a son and play with him as a baby. He has had his heart fill of enjoying the child’s company. Any further stay will only turn the good luck into binding fetters! His job of visiting was over and so Suka launched himself into the job of giving ‘darshan’ to the people at large! Many others had it due, to have his ‘darshan’ and benefit. He did not start out with such intention, but automatically had the divine sanction behind it.
441. Seeing his son running away, Vyasa ran after him to stop and bring him back. The old man could not run as fast as the young boy! He vanished in no time. Vyasa was shouting, “Putra, Putra”, while running after the boy – ‘dwipaayano viraha kaatara aajuhaava – putreti’. Then there was a miracle – ‘taravo abhinetu:’! All the trees in the forest were enacting a scene as though replying on behalf of Suka, saying, “Yes Daddy! What can I do for you?” The word ‘abhinetru’ means an ‘actor’. What does an actor do? As a representative of some character in the play, does whatever that character is supposed to do. Sri Rama has been there thousands of years before now. He is happily back in Parama Padam or Vaikundam or wherever. But till date in many places in India and many of the South East Asian countries like Thailand, Java, Sumatra and Cambodia; that play of Ramayana is enacted. Somebody as the ‘abhinetru’ wears the guise of Sri Rama. Though the true Rama is unconcerned sitting somewhere in his high pedestal, many others as his representative, go to the forest for ‘Vana Vaasa’, lose their Sita to Ravana, cross the ocean, fight with Ravana and kill him. When somebody calls for ‘Rama’, it is this actor who responds. Like that, when Vyasa was running in the forest shouting, ‘Putra, Putra’, Suka did not reply. As his representatives, all the trees responded –‘taravo abhinetu:’, on behalf of Suka.
442. Why should the trees respond on behalf of Sukha? Who is he? He is the ‘sarva bhoota hrudaya’, the heart of all living things as well as inanimate objects! He is in all of them and so they are all his forms only. They all replied, ‘Yes, what’? Not only trees, animals, birds, hills and valleys replied. When someone stands inert, do we not say, “Why are you standing like a tree?” When any body part becomes senseless, do we not say that it has become wooden? If such trees which are normally thought to be ‘dead wood’ spoke on behalf of Suka, does this not underline the fact that the whole of animate and inanimate world was responding on his behalf? That is the power of expression of Suta who was lecturing on Bhagawata PuraNa! (At the start of the narrative in Bhagawatam, Suta is addressing all assembled intelligentsia of Saints, Rishis and Mahatmas. The one doing ‘pravachanam’ (lecture) on any Purana is known as ‘Pouraanik’, which has become a caste name among Maharashtrian Brahmins these days. Suta was such a Pouranik much venerated by the assemblage of intelligentsia in NaimisaaraNya (the forest of Naimisa), lecturing on Bhagawata PuraNa, though Suta was known to be a non-brahmin. Point to note is that the division of caste was never such a hurdle in India as it is made out to be, but a disciplined acceptance of being born in a particular caste as divine justice as expressed by Nature, while the effort has always been to raise oneself above, by personal and individual Saadhana for self progress, improvement and ennoblement!)
443. Sloka stops at that. Trees and animals answered for Suka to Vyasa’s shouts. Then what happened to Vyasa? Sloka does not say that. But, we can guess as to what could have happened. Suka who was in the body as an unfeeling entity, had gone away. Even in the worst case of inertness, God would not have let him go without some compassion. As the ‘sarva bhoota hrudaya’, he did cause the trees to respond to his father’s cries. Vyasa got some solace and his sense of dispassion too must have got a boost. If the son was only in one form, then one would have felt like keeping him close by. When the son is to be seen in all forms then it means that the son is everywhere, isn’t it? So, you do not have to cry. Vyasa was also a highly refined soul. As a guess work or as an intellectual certainty, he would have understood his son to be the all pervasive principle of Brhmam, including himself too! If there was a trace of ignorance in Vyasa, even that would have been wiped off, kind courtesy Suka! Gowda Paada was a disciple of such a Suka Brhmam! Let us know a little more about him!
444. Before that we have to know a little about his Guru! His own story will come about closely following that. What I mean is not the Sanyaasa Guru of Gowda Paada who is Suka, but the Vidya Guru of Gowda Paada. In this world, Gowda paada is famous for the spread of Brhma Vidya and VyakaraNa Saastra (grammer). It is that Guru who taught VyakaraNa to Gowda Paada about whom we are going to learn about now. That life history of that Guru Patanjali, how Gowda Paada got the Upadesa from him and as to how our AachaaryaaL became a disciple under Gowda Paada’s direct disciple is all given in a Kavyam known as ‘Patanjali Charitam’. Let me tell you about that now.
445. At the end of the 17th Century A.D., there was a king at Tanjore by the name of Shahji. Desiring that there should be a city or township for all the intellectual giants of his time, he gave vast amount of landed property and houses to such erudite scholars in Thiru Visai Nallur. That place was famous as the capital for education and fine arts! There were 46 such Vidwaans in that village. Amongst them there was one Rama Bhadra Deekshidar. He was a poet scholar with critical knack for appreciating music. Normally it is said that literary ability and expertise in grammer does not go together in the same person. But Rama Bhadra Deekshidar was an expert in both and so had a title as, “Pratyagra Patanjali’.
446. Originally Patanjali is the one who wrote the rules of Sanskrit grammer, famous as VyakaraNa Maha Bhashyam. His story and Gowda Paada’s story are intimately interconnected. ‘Patanjali Charitam’ is written by Rama Bhadra Deekshidar. It is this author of ‘Patanjali Charitam’ who has a title ‘Pratyagra Patanjali’ to mean that he is as good as Patanjali in the present day world in Sanskrit grammer. As a poet he has written some dramas in ‘Sringaara Rasa’ (amorously flirtatious shades) too. But he is better known for devotional literature. Especially, he had much devotion for Sri Ramachandra Murthy. His drama ‘Janaki PariNayam’ is rather famous. He is also the author of ‘Rama Stava KarNa Rasayanam’, Rama Chitra Stava and many other Stotras with ideas and imagination as not to be found in any other literature about Sri Rama. Actually there used to be a derogatory notion that South Indian authors are no good in Sanskrit, especially in the genre of dramas, like Kali Daasa, Bhavabhuthi and Bhasa of the North. To wipe that smudge, he is said to have written ‘Janki ParNayam’. We are mainly concerned with his ‘Patanjali Charitam’.
447. The moment you mention the name of Rama, we immediately think of his devotee Anjaneya, don’t we? Similarly the name of Nataraja will bring before our mind’s eye Vyagrapaada and Patanjali, one with human body above the hips and tiger like below the hips while the other has a human body above the hips and is snake like below the hips. Though fearful to hear and see, instead of hurting or being harmful to anybody they would be seen to be totally concentrating on Nataraja’s cosmic dance. Bringing out the name and fame of Nataraja and Chidambaram, another poet from that Thiru Visai Nallur, Venkata Krishna Deekshidar has written a Kavyam known as ‘Natesa Vijayam’. In it also there is some amount of details about Patanjali. The Patanjali Charitam written by Rama Bhadra Deekshidar in which Patanjali is the main hero and this Natesa Vijayam are quite concordant in most of the details.
448. Patanjali is said to be an Avatara of Aadi Sesha Naaga. He belongs to Maha Vishnu. In the Thiru Paarkadal (Milky Ocean) he is the bed of Maha Vishnu. How did that hard core Parama Vaishnava Vishnu Bhakta, become Parama Saiva Siva Bhakta, never to be separated from his closeness to Nataraja in Chidambaram? That reason is given in short in Natesa Vijayam and in detail in Patanjali Charitam! Maha Vishnu is said to have sent him for this. So what is the connection between Maha Vishnu of the Milky Ocean and Nataraja of Chidambaram?
(To be continued.)
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