Wednesday, June 12, 2013

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 185 (Vol # 6) Dated 11 June 2013

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 185 (Vol # 6) Dated 11 June 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 middle of page No 1280 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)

1072.      The point to take note of is the fact that though the powers known as 'Anima etcetera' may seem to be breath-taking and awe-inspiring; they are only sops, like a lolly-pop given to a baby that is crying!  Amongst many who claim such powers there have been some genuine Siddha Purusha-s, (meaning really attained souls), totally unaware of their own powers, devoid of self-aggrandisement, went about doing their bit in helping others, just by their presence!  Mostly they would be instrumental for many miraculous cures and bountiful bonanza, occurring out of their sincere care and concern!  But they would not even notice that they are causing all those miracles!  Occasionally they may do things to just to prove the point that the power of divinity is beyond the human ken in terms of science and logic!  Anyhow their nature, attitude and behaviour will remain a mystery for people whose minds are not under their control!

1073.      The slightest understanding and or comprehension of Siva –Shakti as a divine couple may not be available to people who have no control over their minds!  Even while reading such slokas as Soundarya Lahari as a piece of classical literature, one should not forget this above rider!  The Devas such as Indra etcetera who do not have their minds under control, cannot enter into the Empire of AmbãL in the form of Nava ÃvaraNa Chakra, but stay outside the outer periphery only.   So, it means that those who are sincerely keen that they should so discipline themselves only, should be taking up such difficult practices requiring a high level of control of the mind and senses.  Without putting any warnings and notices high-lighted in red, our ÃchãryãL has managed to quietly but effectively put it across in this sloka, as to who may take up such esoteric procedures as a regular practice and as to who should preferably not be undertaking such practices.    

அம்பிகையின் அதிசயக் கற்பு!
AmbãL's Unique Fidelity & Faithfulness!

1074.      Since he has emphasised about the need to have a pure and unbiased heart in looking at divinity as so many couples as husband and wife, such as Siva – Parvathy; Vishnu – Lakshmi; and Brhma – Saraswathi; in the belief that the readers will do so at least for some time, he has composed the next three slokas based on the three divine couples of the Holy Trinity of Brhma, Vishnu and Maheshwara.  So, let us see as to what is said in sloka No 96, with this background information!     According to Sãstrãs only Brhma can be thought of or fitting the title 'Saraswathi Vallabha'.  But, any author of poetries or essays or even stories is praised for his literary acumen by being addressed as 'Master of the Goddess of Learning'!  Similarly only Maha Vishnu can be considered as the husband of Lakshmi and so entitled to be addressed as 'Srimãn' (looks and sounds as 'Mr Man'!), though this title in usage is added to the name of any and every rich man of some standing and wealth!  That is as good as calling such a person as, 'the husband of Sri or Lakshmi'!  When it comes to AmbãL there is no such aberration possible and she is always considered as the Mother, Amma and AmbãL; nothing else, as we are all her children forever!  That is the uniqueness of her fidelity that even in exaggeration you do not make a flippant statement about her!

1075.        The poet says something adding more sense and meaning to her fidelity and Pãtivratyam to her husband!  When the women are in the family-way, they behave in a slightly abnormal manner due to some peculiar cravings during pregnancy, known as 'masakkai' in Tamil and 'douhada in Sanskrit! Such a state is experienced by plants also and funnily and peculiarly, the answer to their problems also lies only with women!  For example, the Sesame plant flowers when a woman's glance falls on them.  Hibiscus / Bauhinia Vahili blooms when a woman speaks humorously and invitingly sexily to it.  The KarNikãram flowers when a woman dances in front of it and Nameru or Sura Punnai aka Alexandrian Laurel / Mangrove needs to be cajoled into blooms by a woman singing to it!  May be you take your girl-friend on a boat-trip through mangrove forest and ask her to sing!  Mango will flower when a woman blows air by her mouth on it!  Makizham Poo(மகிழம் பூ) aka Bullet Wood has the unique preference that the lady should put some liquor in her mouth and spit over it!  Then there is this Asoka plant that likes to be kicked by women and this Priyangu / Thinai aka Millet that requires just a touch of the women folk whereas Champak aka Frangipani / Sapu; flowers by a suggestion of a smile from a woman!  This 'Kuravaka' / 'மருதாணி' has a craving for being embraced by women so that their breasts will press on their trunk! 

1076.      The poet says that AmbãL is so faithful and devoted to her husband that she will not even grant this ('masakkai' during pregnancy) craving by the 'Kuravaka' plant, of being embraced by AmbãL, because of which the poet is calling her, 'Sati, Hé, sateenãm acharame!' – 'सति, हे सतीनां अचरमे!'!  When somebody dies the poem written on that person (like a dirge or obituary) is known as 'charama' sloka; something like the last few words said before parting with him or her forever!  Here the poet is first calling her as 'Sati' and then says, 'sateenaam acharame'.  The first word 'Sati' is the name that she had as the daughter of Daksha Prajãpathi. 'Sat' means 'truth' and what is good.  So, that is the name as being the essential truth of existence as well as with that name she gave up her body in the very ceremonial fire in which her father was being disrespectful to her husband in conducting a Yagna, by not inviting him!   She put an end to that Avatara of hers with a broken heart, as her Father's act was an affront to her fidelity, faithfulness and Pãtivratyam!  From that day, 'Sati' from being a proper noun became a common noun indicating whosoever is ready to give up her life, if need be to prove or assert her devotion and fidelity!  So when the poet says, 'sateenaam acharame', she is being addressed by this common name as the foremost among all wives who are loyal to their husbands; 'chramam' meaning the end and 'acharame' meant the first, foremost and endless!  

1077.      Remember the first sloka of Soundarya Lahari, starting with, "If with Shakti that Siva is capable of many things but if that Siva, is not with AmbãL, he is incapable of even the slightest movements – 'देव: एवं न चेद स्पन्दितुमपि कुशल: न खलु'?"  The Sãkta Sãstrãs required the poet to say that and the poetical tradition stood by him for that.  But coming to the end of the 100 slokas, the poet had to give the final ruling, not only as a poet but also as the Dharma ÃchãryãL, responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of the right checks and balances in the society!  So he has depicted AmbãL as one who could set all her wishes, whims and fancies as only secondary to her foremost priority 1 interest area as her husbands, well-being, comfort, name and position!  Thus she has been depicted as a 'Pativratã SiromaNi', as a gem amongst women who is extremely devoted to her husband!  He further takes her to exalted heights in the next sloka, No 97.

பரப்ரஹ்மத்தின் பட்டமஹிஷி
The Queen Consort of the Ultimate!
1078.      The 97th Sloka is as follows: -
गिरामाहुर्देवीं द्रुहिण गृहिणीमागमविदो
girãmãhurdeveem druhiNa gruhiNeem ãgamavido
हरे: पत्नीं पद्मां हर सहचरीम् अद्रितनयाम् |
hare: patneem padmãm hara sahachareem adri tanayãm
तुरीया कापि त्वं दुरधिगम निस्सीममहिमा
tureeyã kãpitvam duradhigama nisseema mahimã
महामाया विश्वं भ्रमयसि परब्रह्म महिषी ||
mahã mãyã vishvam bhramayasi Parabrhma mahishee ||

1079.      Let us first look at the word to word meaning.  'आगमविद:'those who know the Vedas and Sãstrãs (while referring to you, call you as), द्रुहिण गृहिणी – as Brahma's wife, गिराम देवीं – the Devi for all speech; or as हरे: पत्नीं पद्मां – the wife of Vishnu as the lotus borne Lakshmi; then as हर सहचरी – the householder wife of Siva as the daughter of Adri – अद्रितनयाम् आहु: - they say; but still  त्वं – you are तुरीया का अपि – the one beyond all this – the fourth, दुरधिगम निस्सीम महिमा – of the unattainable and unlimited greatness; as the  परब्रह्म महिषी – as the Queen Consort of the Ultimate and as महामाया – the great illusory power, विश्वं भ्रमयसि – putting the whole universe in a spin!

1080.      A new uncommon name has been added to her in this sloka as, 'Parabrhma Mahishi'.  Parãshakti is considered as super and superior to any and every power in existence as held by the Sãkta Sãstrã!  So is this Soundarya Lahari has also been saying all along.  She is the sovereign power in being.  To depict to the world as a parental duo of a Father and Mother, Kãmeswara has been theorised in the position of a husband, about whom I have elaborated a lot.  But here when we say 'Parabrhma Mahishi', the meaning is that she is the Queen Consort as the wife of the Reigning Power.  The one ruling as the Empress herself will not be called a Mahishi but as Lalitha Sahasranãma says, she would have been called 'श्रीमाता श्री महाराज्ञी श्रीमद्सिम्हासनेस्वरी'.  The king is not called Mahisha which is only the name of an Asura!  So the word 'Mahishi' is not the female version of 'Mahisha'! 

1081.      Having been saying all along that she is the mover of Siva, as the one who protects him from death and the virtual controller of Siva from every which angle; now at the end with the intension of underlining the 'Stree Dharmam' – that is, the duties of what a woman should be doing for her husband; he has been made the crowned sovereign and she his consort only!   That is what she will also love to be called, as she is the inner motivating and prompting power behind our ÃchãryãL!  OK, I have told you about the last phrase 'परब्रह्म महिषी'.  What else does he say before that?  He describes her as Saraswathi, Lakshmi and Parvathy as the wife of the Three Murthys and then only talked of the fourth – as the counterpart of Tureeya Brhmam as Kãmeswari!   

1082.      In an earlier sloka there is this statement that, "there are many who could be called as 'Saraswathi Vallabha and Srimãn' whereas you are the only one, who has remained as the most faithful and devoted wife of Siva", where it looks as though, other divine couples have been slightly denigrated, isn't it?  Such an impression is not the case, ÃchãryãL clarifies in this sloka.  As the Adwaita ÃchãryãL first and foremost, can we ever expect him to be denigrating any divine being at all, putting down some and praising others?  There may be some occasions when seemingly some differentiation may be made to make a point!  That is what he did there.  It is the same ÃchãryãL who established the Sãrada Peetam and Sãrada Matam.   In Sringeri it is SaradambãL who is given all the special attention and importance.  When the recondite, celibate-for-life Sanyãsi-s were classified as 'Dasa-Nãmis', two of the groups were given titles as 'so and so Saraswathi' or  ' so and so Bhãrathi'!  Among the 'Dasa Nãmis' none of the others have any such titles of Gods or Goddesses!  Similarly, amongst all the prayer songs addressed to Goddess Lakshmi, the special one is 'Kanaka Dhãra Stavam', that has been composed by our ÃchãryãL only and that too it was the first of his compositions as a young boy of five years of age!

1083.      First he clarifies that there is no difference between Gods!  All the differentiations of names, so many inter-se relationships are all meant for our understanding and comprehension!  He is telling AmbãL, "You are talked of as Brhma Patni Vãgeshwari and you are considered as VishNu Patni Padmavathy Thãyãr!  He is saying, "गिरामाहुर्देवीं द्रुहिण गृहिणीम……. हरे: पत्नीं पद्मां"  Then he says that I am not saying this on my own but experts in the Vedas say that there is no differentiation between Gods at all – ãgamavido ãhu:"
(To be continued.)



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