Tuesday, December 04, 2012

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 93 (Vol # 6) Dated 04 Dec 2012

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 93 (Vol # 6) Dated 04 Dec 2012

(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 going ahead from the last paragraph in page No 631 of Volume 6 of the Tamil original. The readers may note that herein ‘man/he’ includes ‘woman/she’ too mostly. These e-mails are all available at   http://Advaitham.blogspot.com updated constantly)

82.    God, the Paramãtma is the Universal Mother who nourishes our body and soul.  Grooming our intellect and comprehension She gives us the Ãtma Anubhava.  Though it is not very apt to assign male or female gender for them, they do come into play their parts in our lives as Father or Mother.  Going beyond breast feeding and spoon-feeding us with the milk of human kindness; she merges us in the milk of awareness and Gnãna!  So instead of simply liking the idea of looking at God as our Mother, on the lines that we should be treating our Mother as God; we should be treating and worshipping the Mother, of all our whichever lives, as the companion, partner, friend, guide and philosopher for life now, as well as the one to help us get rid of the cycle of repeated births and deaths for eternity, to be able to cut short what our ÃchãryãL calls, "पुनरपि जननं पुनरपि मरणं पुनरपि जननी जठरे शयनं".  The Paramãtma, who has become everything, comes and helps us in whichever form or capacity we ask for his help.  So if we pray that Parabrhmam itself should come as our mother and give us love, sustenance and protection, so does it happen!

83.    Why should we expect a formless 'Aroopa' to become with form or Roopa?  Because, we are children of such a mother, we wish to see that formless Parabrhmam in the form of Universal Mother.   That we are also the Aatma only and so we also do not have any form – is all unknown as yet.  As of now we can see so many life forms and know that we are also one of them.  We also know that there is the one source for all these life forms.  That one source of all existence is the Mother and we are all her children. 

84.    For a child, it has to see the mother.  It is not enough if she keeps the eats on the table and is somewhere inside.  The child will not touch the food.  She has to come in front and feed it and then only the child will eat.  Eating is also secondary.  From inside if she says, "My Dear darling, please have your food!" it is not enough.  The child has to see the mother!  The Mother has to pick up the child and keep it on her lap.  Then the child will be so happy that it will cluck, purr, giggle and smile looking at the mother's face.  Are we not also the children of Parãsakti AmbãL?  So it is not enough to know that she is our saviour and protector.  We wish to see her with our eyes that she is lovingly taking care of us and then only our hearts are filled.

85.    There is nothing more kindly and compassionate than the Mother's figure.  Mother for the baby, cow for the calf, dog for the puppy, the Mother of all, at all times, in all forms, if we can have the love in her lotus feet, our whole life gets fulfilled with complete bliss.  When we start thinking of God as our Mother, naturally there is an irresistible flow of love from our hearts that becomes a flood in no time at all!  If meditation on God as the Mother starts flowing as a continuous stream, that becomes a sacred water source capable of satisfying all thirsts, cancelling out all our shortages, washing away all our sins that proves to be an eternal spring of love!  Addressing a gathering we nowadays start with, "Brothers and sisters".  That will become a truth only when we start realizing God as the One Universal Mother, as Kãlidãsa said, 'नमस्ते जगत एक मात:' in Shyamala Dandakam.  We will be able to look at all life forms as our brothers and sisters only when you comprehend that one power as the mother and common denominator of all. 

"தேவிபரமான புண்ணிய இலக்கியம்"
'Sacred Literature Addressed to AmbãL'

86.    For the reasons explained in the previous few paragraphs, from times of the Vedas traditionally in our country, the God has been viewed in the form of Mother.  Sri Suktam, Durga Suktam, Devi Suktam, then the one about Ushas aka Dawn, about the Atiti that is the Guest, and Rãtri that is the Night; are all addressed to the Mother.  Out of the 108 Upanishads three are meant for AmbãL or about God in the form of Universal Mother, namely 'Bahvrushopanishad, Tripuropanishad and Bhavanopanishad.'  In Mahabhãratha, Arjuna has prayed to Durga Devi.  In Bhagawatam the women of Vraj, especially the unmarried girls  take a vow of abstinence throughout the month of Mrugasèrsha praying to AmbãL, known as the 'பாவை நோன்பு' in Tami, in which they sing slokas in praise of AmbãL such as,
"कात्यायनि महामायी महयोगिन्यदीस्वरि
नन्दगोप सुतं देवी पतिं मे कुरुते नमह".  This sloka means, "Oh!  You with the name of Kãtyãyani, who is a great power of delusion, and has the suzerainty over all the Yogis, be kind enough to make the son of Nandagopa my husband!"  They are wishing that Sri Krishna should become their husbands!  In fact, RukmiNi later goes through this very process and becomes the wedded wife of Sri Krishna.  Great Rishis such as Hayagriva, Agasthya and Durvãsa have composed and written praying to AmbãL.  So also Kãlidãsa was a great devotee of AmbãL, who has written many devotional stotras. 

87.    In Thevãram, Thiruvãsagam and Thirumurai songs as well as Nãlãyira Divya Prabandam; while worshipping Siva and Maha Vishnu, AmbãL and Lakshmi are also included repeatedly.  AruNa Giri Nãtha also in his Thiruppugazh and Thiruvaguppu songs has not left out bringing in AmbãL, VaLLi and Devyanai, wherever he could.  In one of the oldest books in Tamil Literature by the name of 'AinthiNaigal' there is description of 'Pãlai', a geographical type of arid land.  In Pãlai they traditionally worship God as 'Kortravai', which is nobody else but AmbãL only.  Even in the Tamil literature of the SamaNa (Jains) Religion known as Silappadikaram, there is a long description of worshipping of Durga Devi aka Kortravai that is so breathtakingly beautiful!   In the Amman Sannidy of the temples of Tamil Nadu, the special pooja on Tuesdays known as Sukravãra Seva are so special, that one should participate in them to understand what I am talking about!  In Thiru Moolar's Thiru Mandiram much has been said about the greatness of Shakti.  Thãyum Ãnavar has sung about, Parvatha Vardini, Akilãndeswari, and Bruhan Nãyaki.  Ramalinga SwamigaL has sung on Thiru Vortriyur Tripura Sundari.  Kumara Guruparar has written poems on Meenakshi.  Nowadays Abhirami Andãdi has become rather famous in Tamil Nadu.  SubrahmaNya Bharathiyar also has sung many songs on Shakti.  Even on Vãrãhi on whom there are not very many songs in later days, there are ancient Stutis.   

88.    Thus the greatness of Soundarya Lahari is that, it is addressed to our Mother who is so close to our heart, by Her Grace, by our ÃchãryãL who is an 'Amsam' of Her very self!  That he who mainly talks about the 'Tatvam' aka principle of Adwaitam, that is sans Nãma and Roopa; has composed it full of descriptions of AmbãL's form, figure and greatness; by itself is an added plus point.

"பெயர் வந்த காரணம் – இரு 'லஹரி'களுக்குமே"
How the Name Came About for Both Ãnanda Lahari & Soundarya Lahari.

89.    Why the name as 'Soundarya Lahari'?  'Soundaryam' means beauty.  'Lahari' means flow or wave or even flood.  Wave after wave of flood like flow, surging and swelling is what is meant here.  So, Soundarya Lahari is a flood of beauty.  The source of all beauty of the world is that Paramãtma Shakti.  That is being visualised as a  Mother, who is being described from head to foot, part by part as the very embodiment or personification of beauty and so the name Soundarya Lahari.  Normally a Stuti containing 100 poems is called a Sadakam.  There is poem of 100 stanzas on the Sun known as 'Mayura Sadakam'.  In Mooka Panchasatee also I told you that there are five such Sadakam, isn't it?  So Pancha Sadakam of 5 × 100 songs becomes Panchasatee and with two Sadakam it becomes 'Dvisatee', like the one by Durvãsa Rishi.  In Tamil also there is 'Thondai Mandala Sadakam' and 'Kumaresa Sadakam'.      

90.    But, though our ÃchãryãL has written two poems of 100 stanzas each on Siva and AmbãL, he has not named them as Sadakam.  Both he has given the name as Lahari only.  Whether he named them or somebody else did so or they just came to be known by that name, I do not know.  Amongst them the one about Siva is known as 'Sivãnanda Lahari' and about AmbãL it is known as Soundarya Lahari.  Like a river in spate these two songs just flowed out of the highest experience of devotion of our ÃchãryãL.  He did not deliberate on each word and construction of phrases and sentences.  From the state of total experience of the sense of devotion, like the water gushing out of a fountain like spring, he seems to have just poured out in waves after waves of stanzas.  So Lahari is the most appropriate word. 

91.    Because it is a flood, we are also floating in that.  If you name it as Sadakam, it means that with the 100th sloka you have reached to shore.  But in a Lahari, we can carry on floating or swimming or on a boat!  So instead of stopping at the 100th sloka, we can continue mulling over the words, meanings and the devotional experience.  We can keep ruminating in the flow of God's Leela.  It is as though he is indirectly telling us, "I am not delimiting your flow of devotion.  Continue your thinking about such divine Father and Mother the way you prefer to do" and hence the name Lahari instead of Sadakam.  As much as our ÃchãryãL was great, powerful and full of divine expression, he was also an epitome of humility.  So he did not mean that he has had a wonderful experience of devotion and so poetry just poured out of him in waves of exhilaration, as a matter of boasting!

92.    But that the title of these two compositions as 'Sivãnanda Lahari' and 'Soundarya Lahari; have occurred in those poems itself, in his own words, is a speciality we must take note of!  To my knowledge no other great composition has such titles inbuilt.  You may question me, "How can you say that Swami!  Baja Govindam starts with those two words, isn't it?" My answer to you is, "'Baja Govindam' is not the title of that poem.  Its name is 'Moha Mudgaram'!  Mudgaram means a hammer with which we are supposed to break the 'Moha' that is, our delusion."  But that poem is sung like a Keertana that people after every stanza add the 'Baja Govindam, Baja Govindam, mooda mathe' to mean, "Listen you stupid mind please sing everyday morning Baja Govindam, as nothing else saves us from delusion!"  So, people have come to believe that to be the name of the composition itself!  It is only in these two 'Lahari' slokas, that the phrases occur within the poems itself as, 'शिवानन्द लहरि' and 'सोउन्दर्य लहरि'; and have become the titles.

93.    Let us see as to what is context in which these two phrases have been used in the body of the two compositions.  First let us see 'Sivãnanda Lahari'.  The Soundarya Lahari starts with 'Siva Shaktya yukto', with the name of Siva only.  Inside also in the 66th stanza, it is said that AmbãL is extremely happy in listening to the praise of Siva's greatness.  So, I am sure that to peruse Sivãnanda Lahari first, will be having Her approval too and hence let us start with that.

(To be continued.)




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