Friday, April 30, 2010

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 4 (Vol #4) Dated 30 April 2010.

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 4 (Vol #4) Dated 30 April 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. Today we are proceeding from the last paragraph on page 21 of Vol 4 of the Tamil original. The readers are reminded that herein 'man/he' includes 'woman/she' too, mostly. These e-mails are all available at constantly

40. Keeping in mind this idea of closeness between the maternal uncle (mama) and nephew, I quoted to you some time back that sloka about, “sri kanto maatulo yasya” = ‘one whose mama is lakshmi pati’! I am reminded of how there is a tradition known as ‘marumakkattaayam’, by which the wealth of the family naturally accrues to the ‘maru mavan’, that is the nephew!
41. Having given the pride of place to maternal uncle, next mentioned is the sister, that is, the mother of PiLLaiyar, that is AmbaaL. “janani sarva mangaLaa”. Who is PiLLaiyar’s mother, janani? She is ‘sarva mangaLa’ whose form, quality and characteristics are all totally salubrious, the Para Sakti herself! A sloka normally known to all and sundry calls her ‘Sarva MangaLa’ only, to start with! “sarva mangala maangalye sive sarva artha saadhike I saraNye triyambake gowri narayaNi namostu te II”
42. Amongst all the names of Mahavishnu, Sri Kaant is slightly more beneficial than others, due to starting with Mother’s name of Sri. Simi-larly, having started with ‘sarva mangaLa’, the father’s name is men-tioned, still retaining that order of, first mother’s and then father’s name! It says, ‘janaka: sankaro deva:’, meaning that his father’s name is Sankara the Paramasiva. Again like the selection of ‘sri kaanto’ and ‘sarva mangaLaa’, the word selected for Paramasiva is, ‘sankara’ – the one who causes the pleasantest feeling of happiness. Thus the sloka taking the name of maternal uncle, mother and father in that order, giving out the fact that he is highly connected ends with, ‘to him who has the face of a baby elephant, I pay my obeisances, ‘tam vande kunjaraananam’.
“sri kaanto maatulo yasya janani sarva mangaLaa I
janaka: sankaro deva: tam vande kunjaraananam II”
43. Maternal grandfather, father, mother, maternal uncle are all great. Not only that, the younger brother is also rather famous! That automatically means that, he does not have an elder brother. He is the elder or ‘mooththa piLLai’. There is one Tamil song on him called, “mooththa piLLaiyar mummaNikkovai”. He is the eldest of all children in the whole world or even the whole of existence! So the Veda-s themselves have given him a title as ‘jyeshta raajam’. He is the aNNaa for all. He has only younger brothers!
44. If either of the brothers is famous, it has normally been seen that the one who is not famous, exploits the situation to his advantage. Here is a case where, both the elder brother and younger brother are rather famous and mighty capable! So, while talking of PiLLaiyar, we have to talk about the younger brother too.
45. PiLLaiyar has 16 special names known as ‘shodasa namaas’. Even if we were not able to chant all the 108 names of Ashtotra, we should at least chant these 16 names, whenever possible. They are:-
Sumukhaschcha ekadantaschcha kapilo gajakarNaka: I
Lambodharachcha vikato vignarajo Vinayaka: II
Dhoomaketur gaNaadyatcho paalachandro gajaanana: I
Vakra tuNda: soorpakarNo heramba: skanda poorvaja: II
The last name is ‘skanda poorvaja:’ – that is, born before Skanda, the name giving cognition for the elder brother through that of the younger brother!
46. Thus looking at all his relatives, we know that this PiLLaiyar is highly connected. So, it is essential that we should keep him happy and pleased. We should not get him annoyed. That child God PiLLaiyar who is the first of all existence in all the three worlds, has a kind heart and is so easily pleased. We should be interested in making him happy through which we can have a direct access to his parents, Parvathy and Parameswara.
47. Generally children of rich and powerful families are seen to be spoiled brats. But this boy from the highest reference point is tops in all his physical and mental capabilities. He is physically very powerful, mentally sharp, intellectually brilliant and lovingly kind hearted! That is why we add a respectable ‘yar’ (similar to Esquire’ in English), after his name. (This ‘yar’ is not to be misunderstood as an equivalent to the Hindi word, meant to be a way of endearment between friends.)
48. Normally, father, mother, grandfather, grandmother, elder brother or elder sister and such respectable people only are addressed like this with a suffix of ‘yar’ added to their names. A child that is a ‘pillay’ or son, is never given this suffix, except for this one PiLLaiyar!
49. I said that, if we get PiLLaiyar’s Anugraha, we become automati-cally entitled to the Love and Grace of Parvathy & Parameswara. Since we in India are mostly devotees of theirs, I said that through PiLLaiyar, we can have a direct access to them! But, this does not mean however that PiLLaiyar by himself cannot grant us all our wishes. He is equally capable and all powerful. There are those followers of GaaNaapatyam, who think of him as not only the elder child of Parvathy and Parameswara, but as the whole and only God too! Those devotees are known as ‘GaaNaapatyas’ or ‘GaaNaapathas’. When they talk about the greatness of their ‘Upaasanaa Murthy’, there is one, not so easily disputable logic that they can put across.
50. “When you start the pooja of any of your Gods,” they say, “ you first make a representative symbolic GaNesa with turmeric powder and pay your obeisances to him before proceeding with your pooja, don’t you? We do not make such initial prayer to any other God, as you do for PiLLaiyar! From this you can make out that, our PiLLaiyar is much more powerful than all your Gods! Even Vaishnava-s do pooja to PiLLaiyar in the name of Vishvaksenar or Thumbikkai Aazhvar. Anyway, he gets the first Pooja as the foremost in the protocol. Just because there is mention of Easwara, AmbaaL, Vishnu and Murugan in the sloka-s about GaNesa, it does not mean that his fame is due to them. But actually if you see the purana-s, you will notice that, some time or the other, all these Gods have had to seek his support and achieved their aims with his assistance only!” You can never be able to prove them wrong!
51. Yes there can be no comparative study of Gods. We just cannot think of one God as superior and another as inferior. They are all for the playful satisfaction of the One Paramatma and enable in his efficient functioning. They are there to suit the variation in human preferences and attitudes. So as to focus their devotion, the mythological stories may depict one in a more favourable light sometimes. This is not to mean that there is a competition on, between Gods, for gaining popularity and gain our votes as though! But, in all of them there is never a story depicting GaNesa in an unfavourable light. There are many stories about the other Gods, when they have had to gain his favour and support, at some time or the other. We will see some of them in the next e-mail.
(To be continued.)



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