Sunday, April 28, 2013

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 163 (Vol # 6) Dated 28 Apr 2013

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 163 (Vol # 6) Dated 28 Apr 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 second paragraph in page No 1120 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 updated constantly)

827.                "கருடா சுகமா?" (meaning, 'Hi! Garuda, are you OK?') is the question by Ãdi Sesha the Giant Snake, who happens to be the Bedstead and Mattress of Maha Vishnu known in Indian Mythology as PerumãL – 'the Big Man'; addressed to Garuda the Eagle, the official carrier of Maha Vishnu and "இருக்கிற இடத்தில் இருந்தால் சுகம்", is the reply by Garuda (meaning 'If you are in the rightful place, everything will be OK!').          The reference to the context is as follows.  Normally PerumãL would either be sleeping in the Ksheera Sãgara that is, the Milky Ocean or holding court in Vaikundam as the Overall Ruler of the Universe.  Only when he is resting in the milky ocean the Anantha / Ãdi Sesha – Garuda and Vishvaksena would all be in simultaneously present.  PerumãL would be happily lying on Ãdi Sesha as his bed, known to his devotees as 'Anantha Sayanam'.  Vishvaksena would be in attendance and Garuda will be having a darsan of his master by hovering in the air!

828.                This snake Ãdi Sesha is ever afraid of visiting the Durbar in Vaikundam where PerumãL would be holding court!  There it is Garuda who is more important.  When PerumãL is sleeping in the Milky Ocean, This huge snake known as Anantha / Ãdi Sesha bears the weight of PerumãL.  Then he stays there.  At that time Garuda remains in the skies in the Milky Way and has darsan of PerumãL with due reverence.  But the moment PerumãL leaves his bed then only Garuda has all the importance as the official carrier of PerumãL.  He has to take him all over the world.  In each temple he is PerumãL's Number One devotee – known as 'Periya Thiruvadi', directly in front of the Sanctum Sanctorum like that of Nandi in front of Siva's Sannidy everywhere.  He not only bears PerumãL's weight but, instead of remaining rooted to one place like Ãdi Sesha, is always in a hurry flying hither and thither!  Somewhere in some corner of the world, if somebody like the elephant Gajendra gets his leg caught by a crocodile, and sends an S.O.S by shouting, "Ãdi Moolame!" he has to take his PerumãL there ever so quickly!

829.                As you know already, the snake and eagle are always sworn enemies.  Always the eagle is the winner who will make mincemeat of the snake!  Though even the army is afraid of the snake, (as the adage says, 'பாம்பென்றால் படையும் நடுங்கும்') for the snake, Garuda the Eagle is the very personification of fear, like the 'Simha Swapna' (or dreaming of the Lion) for the Elephant and just the thought of the cat for the rat!  Though this Ãdi Sesha is the bed for PerumaL in his sleep and otherwise said to be carrying the weight of world on itself, one look at Garuda Ãzhvãr is enough to make him cringe in panic!  So he is always afraid of going to the Vaikundam or any other place where this Garuda will have ease of access!  Normally though he is so afraid of Garuda, when Garuda came to the skies of the Milky Ocean, Ãdi Sesha got a bit emboldened!  That too when PerumãL was so protectively lying over him, as the reverential poem goes, "பச்சைமாமலை போல் மேனி" – meaning, 'with a body like a green huge mountain'!  Not just emboldened, but a little too brazen! 

830.                Normally when you meet someone older in age or power and status, you should be paying your respects to him, in fact doing Namaskãra!   You should not be calling him by his name.  If he is equal, even then you should not be taking his name, but only enquire about that person's well-being.  Only if that other person is younger in age or status, you may address him or her by name!  In the eyes of the Ãdi Sesha, Garuda was ever big, respectable and to be avoided as far as possible.  But now as I said he became a bit cheeky, because of PerumãL's presence.   At least this was a chance of once in a life time!  So he called Garuda by name and asked, "Dear Mr Garuda, are you alright?" – That is the meaning of, "என்ன கருடா, சுகமா?"  Garuda got the message immediately.  He also quiet cleverly answered, "If you are in your rightful place, everything has to be OK!"

831.                Ãdi Sesha asked about Garuda's wellbeing.  There is no problem about his welfare.  Fear is the worst unease, isn't it?  Garuda Ãzhvãr has no such worry.  Only in the case of Ãdi Sesha the Snake, half the life time is lost in fearful thoughts and worries!  Only when PerumãL is with him he has absolute peace and wellbeing.  So, when he was asking about Garuda's wellbeing, Garuda poked him in his ribs as though saying, "If you are in your rightful place, everything has to be OK, the problem is only when one is in the wrong place at the wrong time!"  Even the planets have their own place of residence or a sphere of influence where they are powerful and not in the wrong place.
832.                This Darkness was hiding somewhere in some corner of the world.  Its enemy is Light. But their enmity has always been too one-sided, the darkness always being on the losing side!  Just the young sun has to show his face and the darkness has to run away!  "Even if we have the whole world under our reign throughout the night, the moment there is the slightest indication of the arrival of the Sun, we are under compulsion to disappear!  Why so?"  This is its greatest complaint and crib!  "Somewhere, sometime or the other, we must grab and catch hold of the small baby-like Sun and tie him up in knots", was its ambition!  So now, when AmbãL had rolled all the darkness of the world and made it her 'केश भारं', coiffuring it, applying plenty of oil, dividing it in to two parts and kept the 'Bãla Surya' just very close, there was no holding back the Darkness anymore! Suddenly it was happy, thrilled and courageous!

833.                That 'Uchchi Tilaka Surya' was encompassed and invaded from all directions and all the rays emerging were gobbled up!  Normally it is the light that swallows the darkness.  But, here the opposite was happening, that darkness had swallowed the light.  (KTSV adds:  Though our ÃchãryãL and PeriyavãL in explaining him may be getting copiously poetic in their expressions, it is worthwhile making note of the fact that their statement is not contrary to science!  A blue flower looks blue because it, (by 'it' is meant the material by which the flower is made of,) is absorbing all the colours other than blue and letting out only that colour!)  This Sindoora Tilakam like the young Sun, should normally have spread in all directions and turned all the hair in to thick waves and streaks of reddish hue, isn't it?  Instead it has been permitted just one streak of red as the Seamantham / Vakidu to go up and all other light has been virtually swallowed!  So, this black darkness of her hair has won the battle and prevented any other light from coming out, it seems. 

884.                The scene is too good to be lost sight of but worthy of being meditated upon!  Think of it!  The Mother of the Universe of exemplary fidelity to be emulated as a model by all of us and eternal Sumangalitvam to be aspired for by all of us; has applied Kumkumam as a huge round Tilakam at the top of her forehead.  The Vakidu above that is a red streak of lightning.  All around closing-in from all directions are the waves of the 'केश भारं', the surrounding blackness of the hair and the redness in the centre, mutually high-lighting each other.  It looks as though the heavy darkness of the hair is challenging the young Sun like Kumkuma Tilakam as though saying, "Now, show your prowess!"  It looks as though it has eaten up all other rays of light other than the one red streak shooting up!

885.      Why has it left that one streak of light – 'Rashmi'?  If that is also not there, then what will be the evidence of, there having been a fight?  There are many things in life that are red.  So we will see that Sindoora dot also as something like that.  When there is just one streak of Sunlight, only then we will wonder as to what happened to the rest of them!  Then only we will know that all other rays of the Sun have been won over by the powers of darkness!  "द्विषां बृन्दै:" – means 'by the hoards of the enemy forces'.  This word 'द्विष' is the root for all 'dwesham' or hatred.  This extreme darkness of the waves of black hair are looking like marauding waves of the enemy forces by which Sun seems to have been made a prisoner of – 'बन्दीकृतम् इव ' – as though jailed by the opposing forces of darkness – so seems the fate of the young Sun!  Not only that all other rays have been gobbled up, the question remains if there is any freedom for this one ray of light? That also is not there!  It is that ray of light that is in jail, while others have been virtually swallowed!  It just cannot move right or left!  It has to be a straight line Vakidu.  It cannot deviate from the straight path!  It does not have freedom of movement!  If you want divine presence – 'दिव्य सान्निध्यं' – it cannot be at an angle – 'கோணல் வகிடு கிடையாது' – it has to be straight.  Similarly, it has to be made of clean and unadulterated 'மஞ்சள் கும்குமம்', no 'maida Kumkum' and no 'jigna pigna' either, got it? 

886.                In 'Bandham' if it has the fourth of the letters 'dha' then amongst its many meanings, one of them is 'to be made a prisoner of'.  But here, since it has the third letter 'dee – 'बन्दी' it means simply a prisoner and 'बन्दीकृतम् इव' – means 'as though made a prisoner of'. OK, looking at AmbãL's Sindoora Seamantha Rekha in the middle with her 'केश भारं' on either side, it looks as though the 'Bãla Surya' has been arrested by the enemy forces of darkness and we are looking only at one ray that has managed to squeak through.  "OK, it is alright!  It seems as never heard before, this good for nothing weakling Sun, seems to have lost the battle to the forces of darkness.  But what is its connection to the most salubrious Soundarya Lahari?

887.                In an earlier sloka we had seen that using the blackness of the Tamo GuNa AmbãL gets rid of the darkness of ignorance, isn't it?  Similarly, the poet underlines the value of the Seamantham that has been 'made prisoner of' in a different way.  In fact he says, the Seamantham of AmbãL remains the residence of Maha Lakshmi as always.  If it has been defeated it is only an illusion – 'बन्दीकृतम् इव', the emphasis being on the last – 'इव', meaning 'as though' it has been imprisoned!  Nothing like that has ever happened.  In fact the first two lines of the sloka talk of the victorious high point of the floods and the latter two lines only talk of the low point of the floods as though there has been a defeat!  Read the first two lines again and look at its meaning: -
तनोतु क्षेमं नस्तव वदन सौन्दर्यलहरी-
tanotu kshemam nastava vadana soundarya lahari
परीवाहस्रोत: सरणिरिव सीमन्तसरणि: |
parivãha srota: saraNiriva seamanta saraNi: - it means "Amma!  The beautiful flood from your beautiful face along the channel of the Seamantha SaraNi may grant us all salubrious benefits!  Please note that there are four words with similar but not exactly the same meaning as, 'लहरी', 'परीवाह', 'स्रोत:' and 'सरणि:'!  We will look at them a little more closely in the next issue of Deivathin Kural.

(To be continued.)




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