DEIVATHIN KURAL # 119
(Vol # 6) Dated 25 Jan 2013
(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
on page No 815 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
the ChintãmaNi, Kalpaka Vruksham and Kamadenu, we have to note that ChintãmaNi
is just a stone, part of the insentient, inanimate, (अचेतन) Achetana and (जड) Jada
material. Kalpaka Vruksham is part Jada
and part (चेतन) Chetana but (स्तावर) Sthavara – that is static life form that sucks water from the earth,
breathes and propagates its species. But
it cannot move from place 'A' to place 'B' and so is stuck in one place! These are known as Sthavara as against those
which are mobile like animals, birds, insects and creepers; clubbed together as
Jungama (जङ्गम), which
the cow Kamadenu is. Kamadenu is a
completely चेतन and जङ्गम. In matters of அறிவு
especially in divinity it is far superior to even human beings! Thus in the ability to fulfil one's wishes,
there are one representative each from Mineral, Vegetable and Animal Kingdoms
in ChintãmaNi, Kalpaka Vruksham and Kamadenu.
In this, the dust of AmbãL's feet in fulfilling one's wishes is ChintãmaNi – चिन्तामणि गुणनिका! This last word गुणनिका means a chain or necklace.
360. Later in this Soundarya Lahari itself, there is description of chains
made of beads of ChintãmaNi like the ones made of Rudraksha or Sphatika, which
is being used as a rosary by some lucky people who are doing Japa with it – 'भजन्ति त्वां चिन्तामणि गुण निभद्दाक्ष
वलया:'(Sloka 33). Then there is mention of Kamadenu also
there. Those lucky ones while presenting
oblations to AmbãL instead of using normal cow's ghee are offering the ghee taken
out from the milk from that sacred Cow known as Surabhi which is another name
for Kamadenu – 'शिवाग्नौ
जुःवन्त: सुरभि घृत धाराहुति शतै:'!
361. One ChintãmaNi is good enough to grant all your demands and wishes. But, since AmbãL's Pãda
DhuLi is far more effective, he has related it to be a chain of ChintãmaNi
gems! He has also mentioned about the
Kalpaka Vruksham also in another sloka (Sloka 89) which is also about the immeasurable
values of her feet only. There are
supposed to be five trees of heaven with similar ability to grant boons such as
Kalpaka – they are Mandãra, Pãrijãta, Santãna and Harichandana; as listed by Amara Kosam, the Sanskrit
Dictionary – 'पञ्चैते
देवतरवो: मन्दार: पारिजातक: | संतान:
कल्पवृक्षस्च पुंसि वा हरिचन्दनं ||'. In
this Sloka No 89, referring to all such trees of the Heavens as 'तरूणां दिव्यानां', the poet says, 'Those trees of the Heavens grant what is
wished for only to people residing in the heavens whereas your feet are more
efficacious in coming to the help of even a poor man on this earth! The fact that God grants whatever his
devotees wish for, is eulogised in one of the Bhajan songs when they call God
362. Lakshmidhara in his famous commentary on Soundarya Lahari, in
explaining the meaning of 'चैतन्य स्तबकं' in
this third sloka itself is saying that it is, 'a bunch of flowers from the tree
Kalpaka known as Chaitanyam'. These five
trees of Heaven, when people go and stand under them, sanction their wishes by
the tendrils of their newly sprouting leaves, which are like the hands of the
trees. But who can get such
benefits? Only those who have already
attained to the heavens and have become citizens there can go and stand under
those trees. But here on earth, the
poorest can go to any of your temples or by simply praying to you can get the
benefit by your Prasada and Anugraha!
363. The dust of the feet of AmbãL that acts as the Sunrise for
the darkness of ignorance; also acts as the honey of Chaitanyam for erasing
insentience in inert people and as the ChintãmaNi GuNanika for poverty stricken people who are too deeply
mired in the worldly affairs. What else
do they 'the dust of the feet of AmbãL' being useful for? All
that looks important to us are becoming knowledgeable and rich in terms of
monetary wherewithal. But for our
ÃchãryãL what is important is the removal of ignorance and getting Nivrutti
from the deep involvement in the affairs of the world! He started this sloka talking about removal
of the darkness of Avidya only, at the end of the sloka also finishes with the
same note as though, saying 'जन्मजलधौ निमग्नानां दंष्ट्रा
मुररिपुवराहस्य भवति'; like putting a guard on both
sides. Only in between is there is a sop
for the poor people of the world, when he says, ' दरिद्राणां चिन्तामणि गुणनिका'.
364. What ThiruvaLLuvar calls the 'பிறவிப் பெருங்கடல்', is this 'जन्म
जलधि', the ocean of life, that Appar calls the 'false and untrue' 'பொய்ம் மாயப் பெருங்கடல்'. We are not only mired in it but, deeply submerged thousands of fathoms
under the sea! That is the meaning of निमग्नानां. For such people who are
in the bottom of the 'संसार
dust of the feet of AmbãL becomes 'मुररिपुवराहस्य दंष्ट्रा भवति', the two teeth of the boar which are curving and protruding
upwards. You may be able to see this
depicted amongst the statues in some temples, wherein Bhuvaraha Swamy in the
form of a huge boar carrying Bhumadevi (the Earth depicted as a Lady in
distress) on his two protruding teeth.
Hiranyakshan had stolen the earth and hidden her under the ocean. Vishnu as Varãha Avatara dived into the ocean
and brought her out on his fore-teeth.
Like that, the dust of the feet of AmbãL will save us from drowning in
the Samaãra Sãgara, from our tendency of over involvement in the worldly
affairs, is the purport!
365. For Vishnu's Avatara as Varãha, the poet has mentioned 'मुररिपु वराह'. On an earlier occasion
Vishnu had killed a Rãkshasa named 'Mura' and so he is called the enemy of Mura as
Mura-ripu or Murari, as 'ripu' and 'ari' in Sanskrit mean 'enemy'. Mura the Asura was a partner-in-crime with
Naraka Asura. Without mentioning any of
the names of Vishnu directly, it is noticed that more of Krishna Avatara names
are being used. In an earlier sloka
'Souri' was used, which is another name for Krishna and here it is Murari,
therby indicating the author's special attachment to the Krishna Avatara.
"கையால் கொடுக்காத வர, அபயம்"
Boons and Protection – not given by Hands
the next sloka too, it is the value of the feet being eulogized. But instead of openly speaking about it, he
is keeping it a secret till the end. The
Sloka is as under:-
"त्व्धन्य: पाणिभ्यां अभयवरदो दैवतगण:
त्वमेका नैवासि प्रकटित वराभीत्यभिनया |
दातुं फलमपि च वान्च्छ्चासमधिकं
शरण्ये लोकानां तव हि चरणावेव निपुणौ ||"
शरण्ये = Refuge of all the worlds! त्व्धन्य: is त्वत
+ अन्य: = other than you दैवतगण: = other divine beings, पाणिभ्यां = by hands अभयवरदो = give boons and the sign of
protection by their hands. त्वमेका = You are the only one, नैवासि = who is not, प्रकटित वराभीति अभिनया = making a show of giving boons and protection from fear, (न एव असि); because you are; भयात्रातुं = to protect from fear and फलमपि च = fruits of boons also; वान्च्छ्चासमधिकं = more than wished for; तव
=your चरणावेव = feet by themselves are निपुणौ हि =
greater experts, aren't they?]
367. 'Other than you all other deities are seated or stand with their
right hand in 'Abhaya' (offering protection) and the left hand in 'Varada'
(granting wishes and boons) mudra respectively., making a show of what they are
doing to the devotee. Only you are not
displaying such 'mudra' of dance postures of the hands', is the meaning of the
first part of the sloka. "What are
you saying Swami? Does it mean that AmbãL
will not give protection from fear and give us boons? In Mayavaram she is called Abhayãmbikã,
isn't it? People name their daughters as
Abhayam, don't they, because of her name?
She has a special name as Varapradãyini too, isn't it?" The poem does not say that she will not
protect the devotee from fear and grant them boons. It only says that she does not make a show of
it with her hands! She does that with
her feet as they are experts or specialists in granting boons and giving
protection to the devotees, as they are निपुणौ हि. That is what is meant by the second part of
the sloka – 'भयात्रातुं
दातुं फलमपि च वान्च्छ्चासमधिकं तव हि चरणावेव निपुणौ.' What the heavenly
trees do in heaven with their hand like tendrils of fresh branches, she does simply
with her feet! 'To protect the devotees
from fear and whatever is the cause of such fear (भयात्रातुं) and grant them boons aplenty (फलमपि च वान्च्छ्चासमधिकं दातुं), even more than what they could have asked for or even thought
of, her feet have greater expertise (नै + पुण्यं becomes निपुणौ as her feet are two in numbers and so they are both 'experts')!
368. To do any activity by hand requires expertise,
whether it is hand-writing, (a forgotten art nowadays because of computers), or
sculpture, carving, drawing, handy-crafts, weaving, and so on. The root word is 'Kar' meaning the hand, for
meaning works. So, most of the other
deities hold their right hand in the posture known as 'Abhaya Mudra' showing
the palm with the fingers raised vertically together, while the left hand is
held in 'Vara Mudra' once again showing the palm with the fingers together
pointing down. Try to hold your hands
for a few minutes in such a posture and you will notice the physical strain on
your hands! Other deities have to show
such mudras for 'Vara' and 'Abhaya'. But
for you it is all child's play. Just
with the slightest movement of your eye brows, you get the worlds going. The poet says so, in Sloka No 24, 'क्षण चलितयो: - ब्रू लतिकयो:' meaning 'by the movement of
creeper like eye-brows for a fraction of a second' she gets the 14 worlds going
from genesis onwards! So, she does not
have to stand with her hands extended in Abhaya / Vara Mudras at all.
369. She simply has to be and things will
happen. How is she? What is her Swaroopa? The poet is addressing her as, "लोकानां शरण्ये!" She is the refuge, anchorage and asylum of
the worlds and all the living things in it!
So people do SharaNam – surrender in her CharaNam – feet! She is just being a natural 'शरणालयं' a temple like abode and her 'चरणौ' do the needful to give
protection and grant people's wishes, without your having to ask for it, like a flower offering it's
fragrance to the whole world, just naturally!
If you wish for removal of fear pointedly 'Abhayam' is provided. But, if you ask for this and that, more than
you ask for can be given in abundance – 'वान्चासं अधिकं'! There
can be a natural question that may occur here.
"When many boons are being given, 'fearlessness' can also be a
boon, isn't it? Why have one as Abhaya
hastam and one as Varada hastam? We
simply ask for the boon of 'Abhayam' and Swami gives that as another Vara. So, why separate this from other boons?"
is not a thing to be given and received.
It is another name for Adwaitam.
Brihad ÃraNyaka Upanishad (I.4.2.) says, 'The fear
is always from the second'. In Adwaitam,
when everything is one, there can be no fear.
The moment there is Dwaitam, there can be a whole lot of likes, dislikes,
love, hate, greed, jealousy and all sorts of feelings including fear come in! 'Even a very learned man, a Vidwan or Pundit,
if he slightly thinks of Brhmam as something else, he will have fear of it',
says Taitreeya Upanishad (II.7.)
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