Wednesday, June 19, 2013

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 189 (Vol # 6) Dated 19 June 2013

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 189 (Vol # 6) Dated 19 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 1309 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)

1117.      In the Pooja, rituals of 64 steps are required to be done, wherein you take care of the deity as you would extend hospitality to a visitor to your home, which I have explained in one of my earlier talks.  In them there are three Upachãra-s done with water known as 'pãdyam', that is water given to wash the legs, then  'arghyam' that is water for the hands and then 'ãchamaneeyam', that is water for wetting the mouth, in which 'arghyam' is considered very honourable.  Whenever ÃchãryãL talks about    the hot Sun, he will at once bring in the cool Moon in to the discussion to compensate. Here he talks about the precedent in customs and tradition using Moon as the example.  There was this gentleman who observed a ceremonial pooja being done to AmbãL on a full Moon night.  He noticed in it, the Moon as the abode of AmbãL being offered the 'arghyam'.  At his home the next day he was doing pooja.  In it, as part of the procedure when it was the turn of offering 'arghyam' to the Moon, he noticed the moon light falling on a statue made of 'Chandrakanta' stone which was oozing droplets of water.  He collected the drops in the 'udriNi', a type of spoon and offered the same as 'arghyam' to the Moon and that became a tradition.

1118.      There are two types of stones mentioned in the old books known as Chandrakanta and Suryakanta, which are claimed to be rare gems by some jewellers.  Suryakanta is a stone that attracts sunlight and sends out sparks, whereas the Chandrakanta stone draws on moonlight and oozes out with water drops.  In Margoa in Goa there is this hill top temple for Chandreshwar / Chandranath where the Shiv Ling is made of Chandrakanta stone.  When the moonlight falls on the stone idol it oozes droplets of water. This gentleman saw such a stone and that is what he offered saying 'arghyam samarpayãmi'.  That is what our ÃchãryãL is talking about when he says, 'sudhã sootai: chandropala jalalavai: arghya rachanã' – 'सुधा सूतै: चन्द्रोपल जललवै: अर्घ्य रचना'.  Chandra upalam becomes chandropalam in which the word upala means a stone.  The moon is 'sudhã sooti', the producer of 'Sudha', which is another word for Amrita.

1119.      Worse than showing the camphor to the Sun, this offering of water drops from the Chandrakanta stone is rather ridiculous.  The relation between the camphor and the Sun is more farfetched.  If it is cloudy and the Sun is not seen for four days, the camphor may be damp and may not catch fire.  That may be the indirect connection between them.  But between the water dripping out of the Chandrakanta stone and moonlight is more direct, as the former produces the latter.  Yes, between the sunlight and the light of the camphor the difference in magnitude between them is similar in the second example of moonlight and the drops of water produced by the Chandrakanta stone.  For the very cause and source of the drops of water from Chandrakanta stone the Moon, this offering of droplets of water is too paltry and petty.  But the already existing tradition stood by for our ÃchãryãL!

1120.      Then he mentions the third precedent.  What is that?  He had gone around the whole of India from the southern tip Sethu Samudram to the northern top Himalayas, isn't it, that too thrice?  So he had seen them all, the traditions.  In Rameswaram having a dip in the ocean is special as waters of three seas/oceans join there, the Bay of Bengal, the Arabian Sea and the Indian Ocean.  You can have a dip there throughout the year, not as an optional but as obligatory!  He has seen many tourists doing so, not only 'snãnam' but also pooja for VaruNa Bhagawan and also participated in doing so.  As part of the pooja they bathe the Samudra Raja VaruNa Bhagawan by his own water!  You symbolically take a few drops of water from that huge ocean by the tip of your fingers and sprinkle it back on the ocean.  So why not AmbãL be praised in stotra by her own small bits of words?  ÃchãryãL's diffidence was over and doubts cleared.  That is what he is saying, 'swakeeyai: ambhobhi: salilanidhi sauhitya karaNam' – 'स्वकीयै: अम्भोभि: सलिलनिधि सौहित्यकरणं'.  'स्वकीयै: अम्भोभि:' = by its own waters, 'सलिलनिधि सौहित्यकरणं' = the act of bathing the ocean.

1121.      Generally the word 'sauhityam' means 'tarpaNam' and not 'snanam'.  In the Sanskrit dictionary Amaram itself it is said, 'sauhityam tarpaNam trupti:'.  So the meaning is correctly 'like taking the water of the ocean and doing TarpaNam for the ocean itself'!  I only used to say, whosoever it is, to do one udriNi TarpaNam is enough.  In the Brhma Yagnya followers of Rig Vedas, not only for one ocean but for all oceans too, only one udriNi water is offered as TarpaNam saying, 'samudãrs trupyantu'!  So I said, 'let it be so' for all those huge and vast oceans, one spoon of water will do for bathing!  Come to think of it, the word 'sauhityam' means to cause comfort.  In our country where the ambient temperature is rather warm, to bathe is satisfying, which is the same as 'sauhityam' or 'tarpaNam' which also means to satisfy, to cause 'trupti', isn't it?  As much as we are devoted, we should be doing that much of stupid and mad things!  What brainy people call as stupid, let us discard such comments as stupid and be happy with our stupidity.  Haven't you heard that famous pop-song which goes something like, 'everybody is somebody's fool'?  Let us be totally foolish in our devotion towards God!

1122.      The sun and camphor are totally different materials / entities!  The 'chandropala jalam' is not entirely different as it is the very creation of the light rays of the moon passing through the medium of the stone.  But to offer the waters of the ocean, whether it is snãnam or TarpaNam, without even a medium, 'from it to it'; is the most unique of the three examples.  More than saying that AmbãL has initiated the poetry from the stony mass of his mind, he has reduced himself to an absolute nullity and offered her words, her poem to her like the waters of the ocean being poured in to the ocean!  The more we look for them more such treasures will be found with deep meanings, points of principles, and shades of differences like gems in the ocean!

1123.      "Whether brilliance or not, whatever it is, it is all you and not anything else – 'tvayi pariNatãyãm na hi param' – 'त्वयि परिणतायां न हि परम्' ", as he said in sloka No 35, is there anything that is different and not a manifestation of that one reality of existence?  Even if I am an idiot, I am not my own creation – 'swayam bhoo', but your creation!  I am you only, isn't it?  There is nobody here as me, a separate being!  You have become me.  I do not think of me, myself as an independent, separate being with my own identity.  In such a situation, whose words are these?  They are all yours only!  Instead of looking at them as a collection of blabbering nonsense please accept them like the Sun accepts the Ãrati with a bit of camphor; as the Moon approves the Argyam by the droplets of water from the Chandrakanta stone; as VaruNa Bhagawan receives his own water as 'sauhityam'; you the one who has given them the greatness and sense to formally agree to receive these offerings, must take these hundred slokas as 'Nirãjanam' / 'Arghyam ' / 'TarpaNam' or whatever!  In saying all this at no point in time has our ÃchãryãL used the phrase, 'my poems' or words to that effect!

1124.      He says, 'tvadeeyãbhi: vãgbhi: tava Janani vãchãm stutiriyam' – 'तवदीय्यभि: वाग्भि: तव जननि वाचां स्तितिरियं' – addressing her as the source of all speech, "Mother, the source of all expressions of communication, (this set of 100 songs) have come about by your words in your adoration.  (I have done nothing).  It is all yours", he says standing in the last ladder of self- surrender and completed the Soundarya Lahari!  He did not say or even intended to say that he is the author of Soundarya Lahari, that attracts the common man and learned & knowledgeable people equally, or any such claim of ownership; but simply offered it in extreme modesty and humility.  As we do not understand his level of self-surrender, to say her stotra as hers, where is the possibility of using words as 'ArpaNam' or 'SamarpaNam', he would have thought.  So, he has not done so!  What is clear is that in the process, he has no idea in his mind of 'I, me, mine and this my-self'!

1125.      In the path of Gnãna, at the end point one will know oneself to be the Ultimate, the Paramãtma!  If you proceed by the path of Bhakti, the end point is to erase all thoughts of oneself as a separate being.  Once a person has nullified himself to a perfect zero, like the space of vacuum is filled by air, Paramãtma fills it.  So the same Parama Anandam that happens in Gnãnam is the end result here too.  Soundarya Lahari is a poem of adoration in devotion.  So in the way of devotion, he has described the Ãtma SamarpaNam and thereby shown us a glimpse of Ãtma Sãkshãtkãrã and finished it!   He who was great in so many things of knowledge, experience and expression; has ended by demonstrating that none of those greatness's were his and thus also proved that  he is great in renunciation too.  There is a saying in Sanskrit, 'vidya vinaya sampanna' – 'विद्या विनय संपन्न' meaning 'true education adds modesty' and he was the proof of that saying.

1126.      We have been saying all along 'our ÃchãryãL', repeatedly.  If we are truly his students, this is the most important lesson for us to learn.  Adwaitam may or may not be ours to comprehend.  But this lesson of humility and modesty is the most important thing to be imbibed.  We get head weight if we get some expertise in any odd field.  We may not be good in so many things but are very good in false pride!  We compete with others in almost all walks of life and so self-pride may be required so as not to suffer from self-doubt and a sense of deficiency.  So, instead of improving oneself, we resort to 'one-up-man-ship'.  But inwardly if we question ourselves if we are justified in our stands on various issues and subjects, we will come to understand that all our so called achievements are in some way due to God's Grace.  Then our pride will be less and head will be lighter.  Then automatically we will know that, what ÃchãryãL said about 'speech being her endowment' is applicable for everything really.  Even one breath we cannot have, just because we wish so.  All the fears of life are related to that one fear of death.  Thus once we realise that even our life is not in our hands, what is fear and what is worry?  Once we assign our very life to her discretion, then everything else also is taken off our shoulders.  Then 'Oh what peace and what relief', one could feel!

(To be continued.)




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