Monday, January 25, 2010

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 179 (Vol #3) Dated 25 Jan 2010.

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 179 (Vol #3) Dated 25 Jan 2010.
(These e-mails are translations of talks given by Periyaval of Kanchi Kamakoti 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. To day we are proceeding from the second para on page No 818 of Vol 3 of the Tamil original. The readers are reminded that herein 'man/he' includes 'woman/she' too, mostly. These e-mails are all available at http://Advaitam. blogspot. com constantly updated.)

69. Each caste and sub-caste were allotted their own jobs to do, so that there would not be any competition but inherence and specialization. In this none is higher or lower or more important than the other. If you can delink these disciplines from being a profession for earning a living and look at them purely as approaches to divineness; then you will see that music, dance and drama are the royal highways to divinity!

70. Lord Parameswara has been mentioned as the source of all music. Nataraja while he danced, holding His 'Udukkai' at the narrowest part with his thumb on one side and the pointing and middle fingers at the other, rotated them on either side swiftly by moving only the wrist, the sounds that came out are supposed to have formed the alphabets and vowels of the language and the 'sapta swara-s' of the musical octave. Then like the 'mouna' (silent) Dakshinamurthy, there is a 'veenaadhara' (holding the stringed musical instrument Veena) Dakshinamurthy, which you might have seen among the statues in the temples.

71. '...naada tanum anisam sankaram...', says one of the Thyagaraja kritis meaning, 'Parameswara's very form is the sound of music'. In this song Thyagaraja says that from each one of the five faces of Easwara namely Sadyojaatam etc., the 'sapta swara-s' were born. How were we to account for the seven swara-s from the five faces, was not known to me. The giants of South Indian classical music, such as Vasudevachar, Sambasiva Iyer, Maharajapuram Swaminatha Iyer and Semmangudi were also vague in clearing my, this doubt. Then on searching through the Sangeeta Saastraa-s, it was found that the 'shadjam (the base swara of 'sa') and panchamam'(the middle swara 'pa') are both 'prakruti swara-s' and so 'swayambu' (naturally self born and non-varying) as Easwara i.e., God Himself. The other five are manipulated and so varying. These five swara-s are from each one of the five faces of Siva, namely Sadyojaata, Vaamadeva, Aghora, Tatpurusa and Isaana. These five swara-s are 'ri, ga, ma, da, and ni' respectively, have all two variations each, while 'prakruti swara-s of 'sa and pa' have one each. The 'sa and pa' vary with the pitch, but remain constant within the octave for that pitch!

72. The notes sa, ri, ga, ma, pa, da, ni, respectively are the first letters of shadjam, rishabham, gaandaaram, madyamam, panchamam, dhaivatam and nishaadam. The eighth note is a repetition of the first note in a higher pitch from which you can have another set of swara-s. In Indian music they are called 'sapta swara-s' that is, the seven notes and in the western music system they are called the octaves, including the note 'sa' on either side. These sounds of the notes are based on the noises made by the animal kingdom. Shadjam 'sa' is the sound made by the peacock; 'ri' is Rishabham the sound made by the bull; 'gha' is Gaandaaram the sound of the goat; 'ma' is Madhyamam is the sound made by the 'krouncha' bird; 'pa' the Panchamam is the sound made by the cuckoo; 'dha' the Daivatam is the neighing of the horse and 'ni' the Nishaadam is the sound of the elephant.

73. Seeksha Saastram clarifies as to which part of the inner body should be touched by the breath, to create the correct intonations of the letters of the Veda-s. Similarly, Sangeetha Saastram gives out as to how the swara-s have to be given expression from which part of the body, starting from the lower abdomen to the peak of the head, by the movement of the breath. Thyagaraja in his kriti 'sobhillu sapta swara' says that the six swara-s are born by the co-operation of 'naabhi, hrut, kanta, rasana, naasi' that is naval, heart, throat, tongue, nose; in that order respectively.

74. 'Nadopaasana' is adoration of God through reverence to the Sound. It is a huge combined effort through use of Mantra and Yoga Saastraa-s. The pure Nadopaasana is simple and total upaasana of the Ohmkara that is the Pranava Mantra. Whether this Upaasana we do it through Pranava Mantra or through Music, this is high philosophical practice. Naadam, Bindu and Kalai are three important concepts. There is a Thiruppugazh song starting with 'naada bindu kalaathi namo namo'. Let us not go into those subtle details now! All that you have to know now is that, Naadam is Siva swaroopa, root of all sound, the Name or Naama. Bindu is Shakti swaroopa, root of all light, the Roopa or form or shape. Sabdam or noise are the sounds expressed. There is a sound yet to be expressed, that is Naadam, the basis of all sounds, the origin as well as the destination! Sabdam is all sounds including the word that is spoken by man and those uttered by animals and made by animate and inanimate beings. Naadam is the basis of all sounds and their end point!

75. In Vyakarana Saastraa Sabdam itself has been established as the Parabrhmam. This is known as the 'sabda brhma vaadam'. When talking about the definition of languages, the 'vyakarani-s' (philologists) prove that, the sound of the spoken word itself is the Brhmam! Exactly similarly, the musicians have established that the sound of music is a form of God! In music, Nada Brhma Upaasana or Nadopaasana is not only that the very sound of music is a form of God, but when the musician is singing or playing the instrument, he gets merged in the sound, in perfect harmony of sruti, laya, tala, the meaning of the words, mood of the raaga, becoming completely oblivious to his own existence; then the audience also get completely absorbed in the experience! That is the 'anubhava' of 'Adwaita' through music and that is 'Naadopaasanaa'!

76. The bliss experienced thus is 'atma anandam / brhma anandam' that is spoken of so highly in all the religious texts. The sound, the Naadam takes us directly to Brhmam. So the very sound or 'Sabdam' is Brhmam, that is eternal and complete! These two defining characteristics of 'nityam and Poornam' are indicative of the fact that the sound / Naadam / Sabdam, is beyond the parameters of time and space! 'Poornam' is that which is here, there and everywhere, without any limitation of space. 'Nityam' is that which has no restriction in terms of time, that was, is and will be for ever! What our ancestors have said is what is being proved by science. Science is thus enabling us to hear what is being said at the other end of the world, whether through wire or wireless or Sonar or Radio or Internet or whatever!

77. Hear someone is recording what I am talking about on a tape recorder. Years later you will hear without any distortion. What is proved? It is proved that the Sabdam, the Word is for ever beyond the limitations of Time and Space! Is it not so? When our ancestor's extra sensory perceptions were lost and Science had not yet made these discoveries, there was a time when, some people could have reacted to my statement that of 'nityatvam and poornatvam' of the Sabdam quite oddly! They could have said something as follows:- "What is this nonsense? How can sound be for ever and everywhere? May be you can hear it for some time. May be for some distance. OK. 100 yards or 200 yards! Even the big noise of the thunder can only be heard for some miles! Now they are saying that the Big Bang can be heard even now after millions of years!" Thank God! for the advancement of science is proving the statements in our Saastraa-s. What is 'Nityam and Poornam' is known as 'Vibhutvam'! We will talk about this later.

(To be continued.)




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