Monday, December 30, 2013

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 86 (Vol # 7) Dated 29 Dec 2013

(These e-mails are translations of talks given by PeriyavãL 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 last paragraph on page No 650 of Volume 7 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 continually)

AruNachala Kavirayar & Rama Nãdakam
36.           The poet who wrote that song was AruNachala Kavirayar.  In Tamil Nadu literature about Sri Rama, after Kamba Ramayanam, it is 'Rama Nãdakam' that is famous.  In fact, in terms of familiarity with the masses, because of the ease of its diction and the Kamban's Tamil being considered as rather difficult especially with the passage of time, popularity and familiarity wise we should say the AruNachala Kavirayar's Rama Nãdakam, is in the first place.   Comparatively Kavirayar is of a more recent period of times that is, the 18th Century.  His language, proverbs and style of writing with the poems using more conversational Tamil than being too refined, as amenable to be sung as Keertans, became highly popular.  Covering all the events of Ramayana in a free style of conversational Tamil they were suitable for being staged as a Drama than being conducted as a musical concert.  Instead of being an Opera, they were more like a Dance-Drama.  Hence the songs from that work were sung on stage by musicians, used by Pundits narrating the story in the style of religious discourses known as Katha-Kãlashepam, by dancers in solo and group dancing; that it spread quite widely.

37.          Though the songs were good in their own merit like any Krutis, they were more popularly known as 'Rama Nãdaka Keertans'.  When a number of songs are so formed that they tell us a continuous series of events of an on-going story, those songs are known as a separate genre known as 'Daru'.  It is an added point that AruNachala Kavirayar was a champion of the principle of the oneness of Siva and Vishnu traditions.  His name itself indicates that he was a Saiva who gave the story of Sri Rama as a Vishnu Avatara.  He belonged to a particular caste known as 'Neerupoosi VeLãLar' – 'நீறுபூசி வேளாளர்', meaning 'farmers who wear the signs of the powdered and scented ashes known as Vibhuti / Neeru on the forehead, hands, chest and shoulders'.  Once upon a time they had converted to the religion of Jains and then returned back to the folds of Hinduism like Appar of the Nãyanmãrs.  Born in Tanjavur in a place known as Thillaiyãdi, after marriage he came to Seerkãzhi and remained there till his death at the ripe old age of 80 plus.  So, he is also known as Seerkãzhi-k Kavirayar also. 

38.          Born in a Saiva family, he was well read in Tamil and Sanskrit.  Though most of his education was carried out under the patronage of Saiva Matam of Dharmapuram Adeenam, to the extent of not bothering about the differences of Saivam and Vaishnavam, he had a deep affinity to the story of Sri Rama, that he created his 'Magnum Opus 'Rama Nãdakam'.  He was not much clued-up with music and its rules.  So, to the extent he was aware of, he could ensure that the words of the song would lend themselves to the rules of poetical metres and musical beats known as Tãla.  The credit for setting the songs to music in terms of appropriate Rãgãs for different moods goes to two of his Sishya-s both having names of Sri Rama as Kodandarama Iyer and Venkatarama Iyer.  They were both from Chattanatha Puram near Seerkãzhi, who learnt Tamil from AruNachala Kavirayar.  

Fights based on Language / Caste in Music
39.          Whatever the field, with or without any relevance there are a lot of mutually destructive quarrels that develop between people based on language and or castes nowadays, which is very unlucky for all.  In the field of classical music too nowadays, keeping the three famous masters known as Trimurthy on the one side and Tamil composers before them such as AruNachala Kavirayar and Muthu Thandavar on the other, a lot of muck is thrown about.  In fact the selection of those three known as Trimurthy, namely Thyagaraja Swami, Muthuswami Dikshidar and Shyãmã Sãstry; was not based on considerations of caste at all!  What did we see in the in the previous paragraph?  The two Brahmins namely Kodandarama Iyer and Venkatarama Iyer were students in Tamil under AruNachala Kavirayar who was from the caste of 'Neerupoosi VeLãLar'.  As his students they learnt much about the language from him and the teacher made use of the expertise of his students in Music, to refine and set his work to music.

40.          There is a word in Sanskrit known as 'Vakgeya Kãra' which means 'those who are good in Sãhityam that is writing poetry, as well as Sangitam that is music'.  Those three who are considered as the foremost in both Sãhityam and Sangitam were so named as the Trinity in Music cum Poetry as accepted by all.   Nobody knows when they were so named and as to who did that selection.  In fact this selection seems to have been done more out of all those poets cum singers in the world of Carnatic Classical Music, through a natural process of selection, that just happened to be based on, apparent excellence in word selection, appropriateness and validity of the sublime ideas expressed and the supreme value of the music so evolved; not based on language or caste!  If Sanskrit was the main criteria, then only Muthuswami Dikshidar should have been crowned as the Sangita Sãmrãt or something!  If majority was to be the criteria that mattered, both Thyagaraja Swami and Shyãmã SãstrigaL as the Telugu poets should have ruled the roost as the Duo or Pair!  It is just pure and simple bad luck that all three happened to be Brahmins and hence the accusation of partiality and discrimination!

41.          Looking at things exactly the way they were – without any imaginary or real axes to grind – all artists have been singing or playing instrumental music.  The poems and music of Thyagaraja Swami intimately and lovingly called Thyãgaiyer or IyervãL, were popularised mainly by Kanchipuram Nãyanã PiLLai and KeevaLur Meenãkshi Sundaram PiLLai.  Most of the Krutis by Shyãmã Sãstry and Muthuswami Dikshidar were popularised by VeeNa Vidhushi Dhanamma.  The ensembles comprising players of Nadaswaram, Dhavil and Jalra, mostly consisting Non-Brahmins only sometimes even including Muslims are mainly responsible for popularising most of the Krutis of Thyãgaiyer.  On the other hand Brahmins have been quite freely singing, imbibing and learning about the Tamil songs by Kavirãyar, MuthuthãNdavar, MãrimuthãpiLLai, Pãpavinãsam Mudaliyãr, Thãyum Anavar Pãdalgal, Thiru Arutpa, Appar SwamigaL and other Nãyanmãrs; irrespective of whether someone was a Brahmin or Non-brahmin!  From childhood I have also learnt most of these and never bothered to think if someone was a Brahmin or not!  After becoming a Sanyãsi too many artists and musicians have come and demonstrated their expertise in Nadaswaram, VeeNa, Flute and so on and so on in the Matam here.  The differences in languages and caste could never make a difference in our minds, attitudes and approach!  Having said that we do not want to see only the differences but should unify and integrate, I wish to emphasise only Samarasam and put a full stop here to this subject.  I have already gone too much far afield and delayed you all.  Let me come back to the subject about the songs of Kavirayar!

42.          AruNachala Kavirayar having written the 'Rama Nãdakam' and completed it, he wished to carry out the 'Arangetram' that is, official public announcement and acceptance of the new literary work, at Sri Rangam, as it was the place where earlier Kamban had done so for his Magnum Opus Ramayanam in Tamil.  The approval by the intelligentsia at Sri Rangam would have given the seal of universal acceptance, as it was so believed for many generations.  So not only did he select the same place as Kamban for his work's Arangetram, but also the same date of the year that is, the day of the Star of Hastam in the month of Phalguni!

43.          There was lot of sense in conducting the Arangetram of the Ramayanam based on Rama Nãdakam in Sri Rangam, because this very idol installed in the temple at Sri Rangam is the same one that was the family idol / Kula Deivam of the Ikshvaku Royal Dynasty to which fore fathers of Sri Rama had done Pooja for ages and so would Sri Rama have done during his time also.  But by his generous nature and as a gesture of good-will and friendliness, on his return from his 14 years sojourn in the forest, when Vibhishana was returning to Sri Lanka after attending the Sri Rama Pattãbhishekam in Ayodhya; Sri Rama gave this particular Ranga Vigraha as a gift!  It was Vigneshwara who tricked Vibhishana into getting the Sri Ranga idol permanently installed at this point of the island with the River Cauvery on either side, ensuring that it remains on the Indian soil!  Isn't it in the rightness of things that, the Arangetram for the Hero of the Literature takes place at the very station where his Kula Deivam has taken permanent residence?  Prominent members of the assemblage requested AruNachala Kavirayar to first sing a song on Sri Ranganatha first, in who's august and divine presence the Arangetram was being done.  So Kavirayar acceded to their request and promptly composed a song on Ranganatha.

The Song by AruNachala Kavirayar on Sri Ranganatha
44.          This is the song which I said some time back was of the genre known as Ninda Stuti which has been buzzing around in my mind which I wished to share with you all.  In earlier times this was a song, which used to be sung often by visiting artists to our Matam.  But the song that was rather famous for quite some time is not being heard at all nowadays!  I just don't know much of singing and whatever bit of good voice that I used to have is all gone.  But it does not matter as the words of the song are more important than how it is sung.  So let me tell you only the text.  (Though he said so, the compiler of the Deivathin Kural Sri Ra Ganapathy tells us that, Periyavã who had an appreciable amount of musical talent and a fairly good voice, while telling us the words of this and the next such poem, was sometime mumbling and sometime openly singing portions of the song quite clearly, nicely!)

45.          Having assembled a gathering for the Swami to be making a public display of lying in his royal bed or whatever, was rather odd as we noticed some time back, isn't it?  That is what Kavirayar had selected as the topic asking, as to 'what is the reason for your 'Lying in State' is it this or that or that'?  In it the poet goes on investigating as to what could be the reason for this odd behaviour with some humour, some sleight and some subtle dig, without being an open insult or ridicule!  The first question is this 'én paLLi kondeer aiya?' – 'ஏன் பள்ளி கொண்டீர் ஐயா?' –   meaning 'Why did you go to sleep, Sir?'  The Pallavi of the song is a repetition of the question – 'én paLLi kondeer aiya? Sri Ranga Natharé!  Neer én paLLi kondeer aiya?' – 'ஏன் பள்ளி கொண்டீர் ஐயா? ஸ்ரீ ரங்கநாதரே ! ஏன் பள்ளி கொண்டீர் ஐயா?'  

(To be continued.)



Friday, December 27, 2013

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 85 (Vol # 7) Dated 27 Dec 2013

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 85 (Vol # 7) Dated 27 Dec 2013

(These e-mails are translations of talks given by PeriyavãL 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 last paragraph on page No 643 of Volume 7 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 continually)

Dhanur Mãsam, Mãrgazhi  
25.           The same period of one month is variously known as Dhanur Mãsam and Mãrgseersham which in Tamil has morphed into Mãrgazhi.  This generally happens to be middle of December to middle of the next January as per the Roman / Western calendar.  In Indian calculations of a period of a year there are two methods.  One is the 'Souramãnam' calendar with the Sun as the basis of calculations.  The outer star systems and galaxies have been generally classified as 12 Rãsis against which the sun is seen to be moving.  So the Sun starts with one Rãsi in the back-drop, and at the start of the next year it is seen to be having the same galaxy as the back-drop.  Though the Earth, Sun and the Galaxies are all on the move, generally this Rãsi calculation is quite correct.  In fact it is the Sun that is static and as seen from the earth, the back-drop has to be different when the earth is moving.  But whatever it was at the start of the year, after the passage of one year, it is the earth which has come back to where it was one year back.  But the fact remains that the Earth's circumambulation around the Sun is the cause of the seeming changes in the back-drop against which the Sun is seen.  Based on the names of the Rãsis, the names of the months change.  Starting from Mesha Mãsam   the ninth month happens to be Dhanur Mãsam, when the Sun has Dhanur Rãsi as the back-drop.

26.          Another method of calculation is 'Chãndramãnam', with the Moon or Chandra's movement as the basis.  The 14 days of the waning moon between Full-Moon and the next Amãvasya is known as Krishna Paksha.  The fortnight between New-Moon and a Full-Moon is known as the Shukla Paksha.  Days of the fortnight are named as the first, second and so on, using Sanskrit words as Pratama, Dwitiya, Tritiya and so on.  Putting the two fortnights together makes a month.  Mostly the month lasts from one Pratama in Krishna Paksha to the next Krishna Paksha Pratama.  In the North they consider the month from one Full-Moon to the next.  In Tamil Nadu, since this system of calculation based on the Moon has been in Vogue from time immemorial, the first day of the week is ThingaL a name of the Moon and the first month is also named as ThingaL.
27.          In this system, after the first month, whichever is the nearest star to the moon on the Full-Moon night, the name of that star becomes the name of the month.  In Tamil these names undergo some mutation in Tamil and thus when the star is Chitra the month in the Tamil calendar is Chittirai, Visãkam is Vaikãsi, Proshtapathi becomes Purattãsi, SrãvaN is ÃvaNI, Taishyam becomes Thai and Mãrgaseersham is called as Mãrgazhi.  The prominent stars/star groups in the galaxies around the earth/solar system have been identified as 27.  They get covered in this one year of 12 months at the average of 2¼ - stars in the 12 Rãsis.  The star on the next full moon will be 2¼ - stars further ahead.  Note that I am not going into too complicated aspects and details of Indian Astronomy.  As per Souramãnam, Mesha Mãsam is Chittirai and Rishabham is Vaikãsi and Dhanur is Mãrgazhi.  As I was telling you about the unity between Siva and Vishnu despite the differences; in pointing out the parallels, closeness and amity between them, I was pointing out as to how the important festival in the worship of Easwara happens to be Thiruvãdirai and the one for Maha Vishnu is Vaikunda Ekãdasi and that; both are occurring in the month of Mãrgaseersham and that is why, Bhagawan Sri Krishna in Bhagawat Gita, in the chapter on Vibhuti Yoga has said that he is the month of Mãrgazhi amongst the months of the year   (Gita – 10.35).

Jesus Christ and Siva-Vishnu
28.          Between those two days of celebrations of Vaikunda Ekãdasi and Thiruvãdirai, is the 25th of December, the most sacred day for Christians, that is celebrated all over the world as a day of religious functions or in pleasureful activities, that is, Holy day as well as Holiday!  I am just deliberating if I should be telling you how his name is also indicative of the oneness of Siva and Vishnu!  What is his name?  We call him Jesus Christ.  (This talk was in 1966 in which Vaikunda Ekãdasi was on December 23, Christmas on 25th as usual and Thiruvãdirai on 27th night/28th morning.  This year Thiruvãdirai is on Dec 18 and Vaikunda Ekãdasi on Jan 11 with Christmas in between.)

29.          This name Jesus Christ is what has evolved in Teutonic languages of English, German, Dutch and other Scandinavian languages.  But what was the Hebrew name of his is what has gone through metamorphosis – similar to the Sanskrit 'Srãvanee' becoming ÃvaNi in Tamil.  He was not from any of these European countries at all.  He was an Asian only.  His mother tongue was Aramaic, which is one of the Semitic languages.  His name was Yeshuva pronounced as Yeeshua that became Joshua and Jesus.  The letter 'ya' becoming 'ja' is a common happening all over the world, like 'fjord' becoming 'fyord'.  In the Vedas themselves, what is 'ya' in Shukhla Yajur Veda in Mãdhyãntina branch becomes 'ja'.  The River Yamuna becoming Jamuna and Yantra becoming Jantar are the examples.  In Tamil, the Sanskrit 'Ja' is normally turned into 'Ya'.  As a contrary surprise, what is 'Yãmam' in Sanskrit has become 'Jãmam' in Tamil. 

30.          What I meant to point out was that the 'Yeeshuva' in Aramaic must have become 'Jesus'.  But we in Tamil again have converted the 'Je' into 'Ye' and call him, 'Yesu'.  The root 'Yeshua' is our Siva or Easa, that is, we can consider it to be one of the names of Siva, I feel.  If I say so, may be our own followers and people of that religion may have some violent objections!  After all, I am talking about doing away with differences and looking at the oneness of it all.  So instead of saying maybe we can have it that way, let me correct myself and ask a question, "Can we have it this way?  In Jesus Christ, can Jesus be considered as Easwara?"

31.          Let me come to 'Christ'.  It is a word completely of European origin only.  We do the crowning ceremony for Kings as Pattãbhishekam isn't it, in which we apply oil on the head and bathe the king.  It is called a MangaLa Snãnam.  Like this it is done in all countries as approved by the customs in their traditions, in which after applying oil on the head, it may or may not be followed by bathing.  Just by rubbing the oil on the head, it will go in to the head.  It is called 'anointing'.  Easwara is said to anoint some people like that and send them to the earth for common uplift of the masses as Messiah.  The Hebrew word 'Meshia' became Messiah in English.  For that the Greek word is 'Christos' which became Christ in English and other European languages.  The Christians believe that particular one person as God's Messiah, in their religion.  As I had shown the connection between Jesus and Easwara, I am thinking as to why not show the parallel connection between Christ and Krishna!

32.          Krishna is said to be Kishtan, Kittan, Kiruttinan and such words, do we not?  Similarly we could also say that 'Christan' can be another name for Krishna.  The end 'an' suffix is in the Tamil language mainly.  Easwaran in Tamil is Easwara in the North.  All our South Indian names like this are, Raman, Sankaran, Krishnan and so on which are Rama, Sankara, Krishna in the North.  Let it be.  In Kristan or Christan if we delete the 'an', what have we got?  It will become Christ isn't it? As, Siva followers became Saiva and Vishnu followers became Vaishnava, Christ pronounced as Krist will become Christ pronounced as 'Chraist', correct?  So all said and done, 'Jesus Christ' = 'Easa + Krishna' only, that is Easwara and Krishna rolled in to one!

33.          Having smiled and laughed for a long time PeriyavãL continued.   As I had been trying hard to bring equality and oneness between Siva and Vishnu, why not include the Causal Man behind the Christmas that occurs in between Vaikunda Ekãdasi and Thiruvãdirai, is demonstrating that in his name as 'Jesus Christ' has combined the identity and being of both Easwara and Krishna; further extending the idea of 'Samarasam', equanimity and Oneness.  I have said what occurred to me in all sincerity and belief, take it or leave it, no offences meant!  (KTSV adds: – I am also motivated to add a few more points as they occur to me on 'Samarasam'.  There are historical parallels of indisputable oneness, which makes you wonder, if between one Armageddon and another were all the religions of the world originated from similar incidents?  If Moses was put in a basket and sent floating in the river, so also did Kunti Devi send KarNa in a basket floating down the river!  If the waters parted and gave way for Moses to lead the down trodden Jews from tyranny to the promised land, so did the Yamuna parted and gave way for Vasudeva to carry the new born Krishna to Brindavan, on his head.  Later Krishna fought against Kamsa leading the Yadavas from tyranny and slavery to liberty!  We can be too parochial only at our own peril, instead of trying to understand the parallels and oneness!)

Two 'Ninda-Stuti' Songs
('Ninda-Stuti' means praise by seeming to denounce)
34.           I have been thinking about for the past few days, about these two festivals and in doing so, two devotional songs sung in a humorous mood have been repeatedly coming to my mind.  Both are hilariously funny, while at the same time having deep meaning, as composed and sung by two great poets.  One is addressing Siva and the other Vishnu of the genre known as 'Ninda Stuti'.  It does not mean being blatantly offensive, but having a slight dig at the God in all liberty, very cleverly.  It is not being angered but, being a little pally with God!

35.          I wished to share those two songs that have been hovering in mind for the past few days.  The preamble for them has taken me so far afield that, I have gone on a tangent, talking about their oneness, also bringing in my views about the oneness of all Gods including Jesus Christ as Christmas happens to fall in between these two Hindu festivals.  But I am not going leave those songs unmentioned and I am not going to leave you also, without you hearing about those songs.  Vaikunda Ekãdasi comes first, isn't it?  So let me first talk about that song addressed to Vishnu.  As Thiruvãdirai comes later that song about Siva can wait.

(To be continued.)



Wednesday, December 25, 2013

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 84 (Vol # 7) Dated 25 Dec 2013

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 84 (Vol # 7) Dated 25 Dec 2013

(These e-mails are translations of talks given by PeriyavãL 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 last paragraph on page No 636 of Volume 7 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 continually)

 Arangam inside Sleeper:  Universal Dance of Elements
13.           Everything else is alright, but one question remains.  It is alright and appropriate for a person named Sabhapathy to be dancing in the Sabha.  How about this sleeper who has made not just a name for himself but many such names as, Rangasãyi, Seshasãyi, Pannagasãyi, Bhujagendrasãyi and Kshirãbdisãyi – to come to a public place as a Rangam, just spread out his bedding and go to sleep?  His action does not seem to be in order, isn't it?  What is your answer for that?

14.          He has not come to any public place and spread out his snake-y mattress and gone to sleep.  That Sabha or Arangam are spaces in his own mind that spreads out as a dream of all gross, subtle and causal worlds.  He has not come to an arena or stage in our world, but we, this world and this arena and stage; are in him.   It is this world that is dancing.  The whole universe of all the seen and unseen worlds from the micro to the macro level are all dancing, spinning around themselves and around each other, without revealing as to which is the inner and which is the outer and what is the centre!  That the Earth is rotating around itself is one dance and orbiting around the Sun is another dance, being done simultaneously – like the Gopika women do around themselves and around Sri Krishna in Rãs Leela.   All the planets in the Solar System are doing this rotating around their own axis and around the Sun.  Then Astrophysicists tell us, that similarly other star families and galaxies, the whole Milky-Way and many such systems are all moving, spinning, twisting, circling doing circumambulations around we do not know what.  We do not know as to which is the centre and as to where the world is heading to and whether the universe is expanding or contracting! 

15.          What has been described is the Universal form and sized – 'Vishwãkãra' macro dance and on the other side, at the farthest end of the spectrum, is the dance of the micro world at the atomic and sub-atomic levels.  It is the movement of electrons around the nuclei and the adjustments within the atom!  Then if you take the living beings, especially the human being, there is the blood circulation system, digestive system, breathing system, nervous system and internal secretions of glands.  All of them involve the cyclic processes of input – process – output and feed-back with internal and external circumambulations and dances galore!  Then if you take all our minds and now take stock of the dance of our feelings, imaginations, apprehensions, fears, doubts, distrust, anger, desires and disappointments; we will be astounded beyond belief, words and expressions!  All this happens in his dreams in his mind.  The arena or stage for all these happenings is also in his mind only.

16.          We, being only characters in his dream, can never hope to know him or comprehend him the dreamer.  It is not a form that can be seen.  Gnãnis know him only as an intrinsic experience – Anubhava.  Out of his immense kindness, to make us realise that, "What is believed to be true out of delusion by us all, is in fact only a dream scene", that Reality of Existence, takes a gross form for our understanding by becoming a part of his dream, having assembled an audience in the Sabha on a stage in the arena and gives us a physical demonstration of his being in deep sleep!

Both Sabhas are Silent Indivisible Vastness Only
17.          The constantly changing Jagat is not real at all, but only a scene of delusion as it is a pure and unadulterated lie.  Appar calls it in Tamil as 'poimmãyai' – 'பொய்ம்மாயை', meaning 'false depiction by Mãyã.   It is this message given by the dancer in the 'Chit Sabhai' in Chidambaram too.  That the Jagat sprouted in his mind-borne Chit Sabhai, he makes us understand it to be a creation of his movement, shake and dance, in extreme benevolence.  Gopala Krishna Bharathiyar in intense gratitude says 'krupãnidhi ivaraippola kidaikkumo' – 'கிருபாநிதி இவரைப்போல கிடைக்குமோ' meaning 'can you ever get such a fund of bounteousness as him? With such grace, benevolence and kindness he executes this dance of happiness known as 'Ãnanda Natanam or Thãndavam' that is appreciated by all visiting foreigners as tourists, saying that there is no other statue in the world to match this one!

18.          Seven billion was the total number of people in this world in the middle of 2012 that is climbing by 2% every year.  All the minds of every individual of seven billion with his divine will and mind subside in that outer Siva as seen and the inner Sathyam, Shivam and Shãntam, put together is the Gnãna Ãkãsa, which is the only basis and the purest Truth.  Without any shake or movement, by being absolutely static, it is the substratum as well as the super dome – Chid Ambaram – the Gnãna Ãkãsa, showing it to be the stage for his dance.  The same silent and indivisible vastness is shown as his Nidra by the Sleeper.  So, all told as the unforgettable principle that we have to understand is that, these two though apparently seem to be two different entities demonstrating two different aspects of dynamic action and complete inactivity of inertia, they are both intrinsically one and the same with the same message, in two different modes. 

Dream and Play or Leela
19.          What is not true will be seen as a play or dream.  We expect something true to happen.  When that does not come true, we say that, "It was all a dream".  The Sleeper in Sri Rangam is demonstrating this dream in sleep as 'Poimmãyam'.  Games are all untrue only.  As children we play with dolls.  Small wooden and metal pieces are presumed to be kitchen utensils and for a short period of time children assume themselves to be elders, as uncle, auntie or grand-father and grand-mother, cooking food and serving imaginary food of drinks and dishes, even asking others about the taste and if they want more of it, is all play acting, isn't it?  So also grown-ups dividing themselves to be two teams of eleven persons on either side, drawing some lines on the ground, kicking some balls from either side, across some imaginary goal line, making such a fuss about it, spending enormous amounts of money for tickets, paying astronomical salaries for the players and further fortunes in gambling!  So are other games of infinite varieties.  Can anyone tell me as to, why is it so very important for life, that some stupid ball should be kicked across some stupid goal line?  Why should people break their heads in pushing chess players on that board of 64 black and white squires?  What answer can be given, if you ask similar questions about this or so many other games that are mush-rooming every day that gets people glued to their smart phones, I-pads and what not!

20.          "I just told you for the fun and play of it.  Oh!  Did you take it seriously?"  When we ask such questions, evidently we know that we are taking game and play as not true, isn't it?  But even games in fun do become deadly serious!  We know that play is all in fun and is not to be taken seriously.  But for some reasons such things do become too true, as it happens in fiction, dramas, cinemas and reality-plays!  So the dream as well as games and play are equally unreal as part of Mãyã from which we have to wake up.  So our reality of existence has merged with Mãyã inalienably and irrevocably.  In it, this sleeper from Sri Rangam is depicting the dream and the Chidambaram dancer is demonstrating the play!

21.          If our very existence is only a play, then all the things we take very seriously also are some play or make-believe only, isn't it?  Assuming poses and imaginary expressions, steps of so many metres, turning, twisting, slanting; imagining other characters, plucking flowers from imaginary plants, playing, gaming, assuming it to be real, making others to follow your imaginations and assumptions; it is all play only isn't it?  They say, Bharatha Nãtyam as a fine-art, starting from mundane beginnings, through Abhinaya is said to slowly take you from here, in which world and all this is real; to there, where at the highest level you are suddenly faced with the reality of this world's falsity!  So, dream has become real and our life in this world is a play and play is a game and sometimes suddenly it becomes too seriously real and the lines or limits vanish.  (For a few minutes PeriyavãL is smiling to himself mulling over the way it happens and how his speech has proceeded so far.)  Did the play suddenly become real or did reality suddenly become a play?

22.          Similar play of divinity is this creation of this whole world and universe in which nothing is what it seems to be, from the start till the end.  Starting from arrival in this world or its creation till the end stage of his absorption of all unto himself, are the three major chapters or areas of activities as, Creation or 'Srushti',  Maintenance or 'Stiti', and Assimilation and Reabsorption or 'Samhãra'; are the three major jobs of God as generally known to all and sundry.  All these three further enable continued hiding of reality from our eyes; happenings on this side of the screen, reality being still remaining hidden from our eyes and understanding.  That hiding from our eyes and comprehension is known as Screening or 'Tirodãnam', is the fourth job of God.  The fifth job is to remove the screen and allow and accommodate us metaphorically in the space of Gnãna Ãkãsa is the fifth job of divine Grace or Anugraha.  The most peaceful Shãntam-Sivam demonstrates this as a dynamic dance; while that Mãyãvi demonstrates the same in all peace of Shãntam-Sleep; thereby they are both proving the adage, 'unity in diversity'!

Oneness of Identity of Siva and Vishnu
23.          When there is the violent storm brewing, there is a calm or still-centre in it.  Inside an atom also around a still-centre the electrons are moving at the speed of light.  Similarly that dynamic dancer is indicating the non-moving still centre as Gnãna Ãkãsa and the sleeper is indicating as the Mauna Nidra.  What the Saivites call the Kovil is the dancer's Chidambaram and for Vaishnavites the Kovil is the sleeper's Sri Rangam.  In both places are the synonym of Stage or Theatre as Sabha in one and the Rangam in the other, as a special name for the Sannidy of their respective Gods.  This shows that our ancient past masters were well aware of their oneness. 

24.          For both Saivites and Vaishnavãs, the most important day occurs in Dhanur Mãsam known as 'Margazhi' – 'மார்கழி' in Tamil or 'Mrugaseersham' – 'मृगशीर्षं' in Sanskrit.  Both of them have the 'Thiruvempãvai' and 'Thiruppãvai' respectively, meant to be sung during this month mainly.  Because of its message of cancelling out the Siva-Vishnu differences and indicating their oneness is the greatness of this month in the whole year.  That is why Sri Krishna has said in Bhagawat Gita that he is this month particularly amongst all the months of the year, 'Masãnãm Mrugasèrsha: aham' – 'मासानां मृगसीर्ष: अहं'.

(To be continued.)



Monday, December 23, 2013

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 83 (Vol # 7) Dated 23 Dec 2013

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 83 (Vol # 7) Dated 23 Dec 2013

(These e-mails are translations of talks given by PeriyavãL 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 page No 629 of Volume 7 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 continually)

Sleeper, Dancer and Singers
Two Kings: Two Roles for the King of the Universe
1.             Day before yesterday was Vaikunda Ekãdasi, come and gone.  Another two days later, early morning on the day after tomorrow even before the sunrise Thiruvãdirai Abhishekam would be over.  One is a day for the observation of total fasting and the other is the day for eating KaLi with seven varieties of vegetables in the Koottu!  As the famous saying goes, 'thiruvãdirai oru vãi kaLi, thinnãdavar naragak kuLi' – 'திருவாதிரை ஒரு வாய் களி தின்னாதவர் நரகக் குளி', that if you do not eat it even a mouthful, you will end up in the deep bottom of Hell! They threaten you and thereby force us to eat that delectable dish anyhow.  To rhyme with the word 'kaLi' – 'களி', they make what should have been a 'kuzhi' – 'குழி', into a 'kuLi' – 'குளி'.  One is a sleeper's fast and the other is celebration of a dancer.  But both are similarly Kings, one is a Rangaraja and the other Nataraja.

2.            If there is a king there has to be a King's Court known as Raja Sabha or Raja Sadas isn't it?  In that matter too they are both very similar.  The word Rangam means a Sabha or rather a Sabhai.  In Chidambaram the sanctum-sanctorum aka Sannidy is called a Sabhai.  The inner enclosure is Chit-Sabhai and the outer area where the devotees assemble is called the Kanaka-Sabhai.  Whatever it is, Rangam and Sabhai are synonyms.  Further similarity is that both the Kings are facing the Southerly direction.  Another parallel is that both these kings are not conducting any official business as kings do in their court, such as planning a battle or governance of the state or any politics.  It is all very surprising isn't it?

3.            These two kings do everything in this world and universe,   from creation, conduct, sustenance, governance, change, recycle to escape from involvement to attaining of Moksham, as a play or an act of entertainment in fun, wearing two different disguises.  One enacts his part as a dancer, his act known as 'koottu' – 'கூத்து' runs his government – the one who is going to make us eat that vegetable-goulash known with the same spelling in English but different pronunciation in Tamil as 'ezhu karik koottu' – 'ஏழு கறிக் கூட்டு'.  Yes, his Sabhai is not a place where punishments are given but is a Dance Arena.  The one who made us starve in fasting day before yesterday, what is his Sabhai?  His is a greater surprise.  It is his bed-room.  If there it is all dancing in the other Sabha, here it is all deep sleep.  You have to eat well for all that exertion of dancing isn't it?  Here to go with the sleep, it is total fasting. 

World Governance in Deep Sleep
4.            It is alright to assemble everybody in the King's Court and conduct dancing.  But, how is it alright to assemble the court and go to sleep, like some of our MPs do in the Parliament?  To sleep, you need silence and seclusion, isn't it?  That is what is amazing in the surprise!  The one who does this is known as Mãyan, Maha Mãyan the Magician par excellence.  Whatever he does, instead of being normal magic tricks, they are all abnormal magic tricks.  There is no gainsaying asking as to why and how they do all this!  So what the KaLi-man does by dancing this fasting sleeper does the governance of the Universe in his sleep of Mãyã. 

5.            I said 'KaLikkoottu' – 'களிக்கூத்து'.  Malayãlam language evolved from Tamil only.  Even today it has more of ancient Tamil words and phrases in that language.  In that language dance is KaLi.  They have a dance form known as 'KathakaLi' which is world famous, which means that a story is conveyed through the medium of dance.  It has another name as 'Ãtta Katha' in which first there is dancing and then narration of the story.  Let it be. 

6.            This sleeper is called the 'Mãyakkãran or Mãyon' – 'மாயக்காரன் or மாயோன்' in ancient Tamil literature.   Those who do not wish to connect to the Sanskrit root word will say that this has nothing to do with Magic or Mãyã.  He is dark complexioned and so he is called Mãyon.  But I feel that also takes us to magic only.  Black is dark and that is suitable for sleep.  To manage world governance in sleep itself contains a certain amount of magic, isn't it?  So we can say that the magic of Mãyã goes hand in hand with it, isn't it?  But, how is all this done in his sleep?  Let me give you an explanation as to how it can be done.  Only when you sleep, you can see a dream, what do you say?  So the whole universe is a dream in God's sleep.  As a dream of Mãyã in God's mind, He manages all this without any problem.  From the movement of the biggest galaxies to the orbits of the electrons in the infinitesimal atom, the whole thing is unreal and only a virtual dream and not a reality of wakefulness!  His magic is the thought in his dreams as the basic truth and that is the explanation.  That He demonstrates for all to see in his Rangam or Arena, drama stage and also bed-room.

7.            Another meaning of Rangam is colour or VarNam.  Like we have Sri Ranga Nathan as a rather famous name for Maha Vishnu in the South, the main VaishNava deity in Maharashtra is Pãnduranga and there this word 'Ranga' means colour and PãNdu means white.  Pãndavãs' father's name was that white-man's name only because he possibly had that disease known as Leukaemia.  The name Arjuna also means very white.  Krishna is black and Arjuna is white.  This black man and that white man were, so very close as friends and also as Guru and Sishya.  When that black Sri Krishna by his penchant for magic was absolutely white, he was PãNdu Ranga.

8.            In our side even before sunrise every day, they make decorative designs on the ground in front of the house as a sign of welcome.  They first sweep the area of dirt and discarded items.  Then sprinkle some water with some cow-dung to ensure that dust on the ground settles, also as a measure of hygiene.  Then the design is made on the ground so swept clean, with some rice powder, may be with some colours added.  The rice powder also serves as food for the ants and birds.  These designs of flowers, arches and creepers so made are known as 'kolam' in the Tamil language and Rangoli in Hindi and Rangavalli in Sanskrit.  It is Rangavalli that has morphed into Rangoli.  This also happens to be the name of Thãyãr or AmbãL in temples, like in Kumbakonam she is KomaLavalli, in ThiruvallikkeNi she is Vedavalli and in Sri Rangam as Ranga's consort, she is Rangavalli.

9.            How did the dark blue Vishnu aka Sri Krishna became the white Pãnduranga was never made clear despite reading their Sthala PurãNa or whatever. Some research scholars claim that the old name of that place was Bandãrke.  Still nobody can say as to how that word can morph into Pãnduranga through translation into Sanskrit or any other language.  To me it looks as though they are putting 2 and 2 together and neither making 22 by putting them side by side nor adding them up as 4!  Though I could not locate any story behind it, I do see a very striking message as to how black can be white and vice versa.  Through Mahã Mãyã I can see that he is giving us Mahã Gnãnam of Adwaitam too, that black and white is not different, but one and the same.  The general public's night time is day for the Gnãni and the night of Gnãni is other people's day time, is Sri Krishna's own statement in Bhagawat Gita (2.69).  In the darkness of ignorance people are looking at the world as day time.  For the Gnãni who has become aware of his own reality as one with Paramãtma, the world has become unseen.  In that state of Anubhuti Gnãni is happily experiencing the reality of Paramãtma in all fairness.  So fair is black and black is fair in the love of God!  What is seen as dark in the ignorance of Mãyã, in Gnãna becomes Pãnduranga in pure white. 

Unity in Diversity
10.              Here in our part of the South India that Dancer and Sleeper are demonstrating the same truth of Unity in Diversity.  When the whole universe is reduced to a dot with all life forms have been quietened to a stage of absolute peace, it is said to be Satyam Shivam Shãntam as said in MãNdookya Upanishad.  All the worlds have been rendered 'Upasamanam', to total peace of Sivam as Adwaitam.  Just now as we have seen the stages of Sleep, Wakefulness and Dream, crossing all those stages, it is said to be 'Tureeyam', as the Upanishad says.  What did we see here?  It is that Sivam in complete and total dynamic dance.  As an opposite of Sivam, the Mãyãvi Vishnu is said to be directing and participating in all the Mãyã dramatics generally.  But, that Vishnu here is in Yoga Nidra in absolute peace as, 'shãntãkãram bhujaga sayanam' – 'शान्ताकारं भुजग शयनं', sleeping.
11.          No divergence and no differences.  We are not opposites and we are not two even!  We are side by side, seemingly two, but one.  That is why in temple Sannidy, the devotees stand on either side.  We only need the side-long glance of God known as 'Katãksham', which is cool ambrosia that is prayed for and not face to face.  That is done only by enemies.  We are not enemies and do not fight with each other.  We are on the same side.  There is no side but, we are one.  Mutually one in the other, inalienably one!  That is what was said by 'Poigai Ãzhvãr' – 'iruvar angatthãl thirivare(lu)m oruvan oruvan angatthu uLan' – 'இருவர் அங்கத்தால் திரிவரே(லு)ம் ஒருவன் ஒருவன் அங்கத்து உளன்'.  Though they seem to be two different entities, inwardly 'andarangaththil' – 'அந்தரங்கத்தில்', they are one.  So they are saying without speaking, indirectly pointing at the Truth of it all!

12.          What I said by bifurcating the words as 'iruvar angatthãl' can be combined as 'iruvarangatthãl' – 'இருவரங்கத்தால்' or as 'iru arangaththãl' – 'இரு அரங்கத்தால்', in two different bodies or in two different places, one in Sri Rangam in the place of that name and the other in Chit Sabhai in Chidambaram; 'thirivarelum' – though seemingly different in two different places, one is in the other and the other is in one.  So the end part of the statement can be re-paraphrased as 'oruvanoruvanangatthuLan' – 'ஒருவநோருவனங்கத்துஉளன்'.  (KTSV adds: - I am afraid that it is impossible to translate that into English any further, without spoiling the pun and fun!)    

(To be continued.)



Saturday, December 21, 2013

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 82 (Vol # 7) Dated 21 Dec 2013

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 82 (Vol # 7) Dated 21 Dec 2013

(These e-mails are translations of talks given by PeriyavãL 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 622 of Volume 7 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 continually)

Dheera: Again Gayatri
68.           "Dheerãya".  This word normally conveys the sense of fearlessness and indomitable courage.  Those meanings are all right.  But the word also conveys a meaning of sharp intellect.  Again the allusion is to Gayatri Mantra.  The root word 'dhee:' – 'धी:' occurs there in Gayatri Mantra, when it is said that the effulgence of the Paramãtma should kindle and inflame our intelligence, it is this word 'dhee:' – 'धी:' that comes in to play. The very root meaning of 'Gayatri' is, 'that which by being sung, protects the singer'.  To chant the Vedas with right intonations, emphasis, ups and downs is music by itself of a high elevating experience.   The Sãma Veda has a synonym as 'Sãma Gãnam'.  In that sense Gayatri is said to protect the singer of Gayatri.  Instead of the Swaras of the Vedas, using the 'Sapta Swaras' of music, Muthuswami Dikshidar has so composed this song, using the very words of the Gayatri Mantra so that, all people including the uninitiated will be able to sing that Gayatri as a song if not as a Mantra!

69.          Among the Sapta Swaras, the basic note / Ãdhãra Swara is known as Shadjamam, that is notated as 'Sa'.  It sounds like the call of the Peacock, they say.  The moment you think of this Peacock – 'mayur' – 'मयूर' or 'mayil' – 'மயில்'; what comes before our minds is this SubrahmaNya Swami; as AruNagiri Nãtha says, 'maragada mayoora perumãL kãN' – 'மரகத மயூர பெருமாள் காண்'! If he is the Presiding Deity for the basic Ãdhãra Sruti, there has to be musical definition as Sangita Gayatri for him isn't it?  So, by his Grace having created a Muthuswami Dikshidar, and coming as a Guru for him, placing sugar candy in his mouth, made him compose and sing so sweetly a unique song, all for himself, this song 'Sri SubrahmaNyãya' it seems.

Worshipped by Brhma and Guru for Easwara
70.         Next is the phrase 'nata vidhãtré' – 'नत विधात्रे', meaning 'worshipped by Brhma'.  That word 'nuta' in 'Veera nuta' and this 'nata' are meaning the same, a synonym for 'worshipful'.  You know the story about Brahma becoming his devotee.  This child asked Brhma, the meaning of 'PraNava Mantra'.  Without knowing the correct meaning or interpretation, in reply Brahma just waffled something.  So what this child did was to put Brhma behind bars and took over the job of Creator-in-Chief himself.  In some Kshetrãs we can observe SubrahmaNya depicted with Brahma's Kamandalu and Japa Malai.  That is how he is picturized in Kanchipuram Kumara Kottam.  That is to depict the occasion when he had taken over the job of Brahma. 

71.          Then one day Parameswara spoke to his son, recommending Brahma's case to be reviewed.  He acted as though he did not know the whole story and asked, "If Brahma did not give the correct reply, why don't you give the correct answer that is, if you know it".  Young 'Bãla SubrahmaNya' answered quite majestically, "I will not answer you, if you ask like this, like a master addressing a student.  If you ask in the tone of a student wishing to get a doubt cleared from a master, then I shall tell you and not otherwise"!  Even a great warrior would feel proud losing to his son, as they say.  Accordingly Paramasiva became a Sishya to his own son and took Upadesa for the meaning of PraNava Mantra.  We all should learn a lesson from this as to how, for the sake of learning and earning knowledge, no amount of humbleness is too much.  The greatness of SubrahmaNya was then widely known.  Brahma from within the jail conveyed his heart felt regrets and apologies that he may please be excused.  Kumara Swami released him and restored the job of Creation to him.  That is how he became 'nata vidhãtru'.  We already have seen as to how he was the son-in law of 'Deva Raja' Indra and so he is also, 'deva raja jãmãtré' – 'देव राज जामात्रे'.

The Ruler cum Enjoyer of All Worlds
72.            The last line of the poem says, 'bhoorãdi bhuvana bhoktré Bhoga moksha pradãtré' – 'भूरादि भुवन भोक्त्रे भोग मोक्ष प्रधात्रे'.  Let us take the first half of the line and look into its meaning.  The word 'Bhu' means the world and 'Bhurãdi' means the Earth and other such worlds.  Whatever the modern science says about the milky-way, solar system, planets and as related to the galaxies of stars, clusters, quasars and black holes; are all sufficiently hazy in clarity and accuracy.  As per our beliefs, the worlds from this Earth onwards are uncountable.  Amongst them all from the earth onwards, there are supposed to be seven 'Lokas' above the earth and seven below.  Further they are classified and brought within the ambit of three worlds namely, 'bhoor, bhuvas, suvar lokas' – 'भू: + भुव: + सुव: = भूर्भुव:स्सुव:' like a sandwich with an upper, middle and lower set of worlds rising with Bhuvas in the middle and Earth as the lowest. 

73.          As per Vedic tradition, these three as 'vyahrudies' are said with the PraNava Mantra as, 'om bhoor bhuva: suva:' – 'ॐ भूर् भुव: सुव:' at the very start of any Japa or Karma or Dhyãna so that the undertaken endeavour is fruitful and successful.  Again the Gayatri Mantra has to be made a mention of, as these 'vyahrudies' are added at the start of Gayatri Mantra too.  Earlier also Dikshidar had brought in this 'Bhu' while saying 'Bhusurãdi'.  Then while talking about 'vãsavãdi sakala deva', indirectly he referred to their place of residence the 'suvar loka'.  Now at the end of the Keertana, by saying 'Bhoorãdi bhuvanam', he is pointing out to all those worlds, starting from this earth.  All that happens in all the worlds are for the enjoyment of that one Para Shakti's Leela Anubhava isn't it?  So, the ruler of all those worlds and the enjoyer of it all as 'Bhokta' is that SubrahmaNya Swami only, he says.  Add a Namaskãra addressing him and the word 'Bhokta' changes to 'Bhoktré'.
He Who Sanctions Benefits of This and the Other World
74.          So, at the end, our Namaskãrãs are due to Lord SubrahmaNya when Dikshidar says 'bhoga mokshap pradhãtré' – 'भोग मोक्ष प्रधात्रे'.  In fact he is the ruler and enjoyer of all the pleasures of all the worlds, in which as though we are also experiencing many enjoyments such as wealth, lineage, continuity, position, status, comforts, pleasures and fame; he causes the world drama as Shakespeare's famous line which says, 'All the world is a stage'! In that 'world-drama' he is the giver, provider, director and organiser – 'dhãtã' – 'धाता'.  Pradhãtã with an adjective 'pra' added as he is the provider and conductor par excellence.  So when we address our obeisance to him, the word becomes 'pradhãtré'.

75.          The drama has to go on being conducted to its normal course. It is also in the rightness of things for us to be given all those pleasures and largesse.  But if we remain playing the role as a character in the drama, without making an effort to realise our reality, it would be very stupid of us indeed.  In a drama on stage, don't we get back to our reality when the make-up is removed and our disguise is taken off?  Similarly when the mind that causes all the assumptions of make-ups and disguise is annulled, we are truly one with our reality of our Ãtma, isn't it?  That is the state of Sadãnanda of everlasting happiness.  This also he gives as 'Guruguha', as 'Tatva Upadesa Karta', as 'Agnãna Dwãnta Savita' and as 'Moksha Pradhãta'.  All Devatas have their appointed roles.  If you go to Dhana Lakshmi and Santãna Lakshmi, they will give you wealth and lineage respectively.  They can't give you Moksham.  Similarly, if you go to DakshiNa Murthy he can't give you 'Bhoga Vastu', only Gnãnam and Moksham are his portfolios.  Sri SubrahmaNya Swami can give you all the wealth and pleasures of this worldly life as well as, the other worldly attainment of Moksham as he is the Bhoga Moksha Pradhãta.  There is nothing more to ask for and nothing more to say!  The Kruti by Muthuswami Dikshidar gets completed here.

*   *   *   *   *
Conclusion: Advices to Artists of Music
76.          Having given a wonderful meaningful explanation cum commentary on the poem by Muthuswami Dikshidar, PeriyavãL spoke to Ariyakkudi Ramanuja Aiyangãr, the following words.  "I am very happy about your singing and the fact that as having been part of a very good musical tradition, you are maintaining the standards of that tradition.  Similarly I wish you all the best to continue your good work and hand over your art and expertise to capable hands of the next generation.  A Brahmin who has learnt Vedas has to transfer his knowledge to at least one boy of the next generation as a compulsory duty to continue the 'Parampara'.  That is equally applicable to knowledge of all arts and Sãstrãs.  It is our duty to ensure that, the Vidya we have learnt instead of dying with us should reach many others. 

77.          Sangita Vidwãns have yet another responsibility.  They should learn the meaning of the Sãhityam, that is, the words of the song whether it is in Tamil, Telugu, Kannada or Sanskrit.  It is not correct to say only Tamil will do.  There have been many great poets cum composers of music, well aware of the intricacies of music and word meanings; and most importantly deeply devoted with intimate Anubhava, who have virtually inundated this South India with hundreds or even thousands of wonderful Krutis.  To say no to them is our loss.  Let them sing a lot in Tamil also.  But do not ignore other languages.  If you do not understand the meaning of words, all that is required is to take efforts in that direction.  When we are interested, don't we try and learn so called western pop songs and bodily contortions of so called dances?  For clean music with really ennobling, elevating and meaningfulness, can we not make an effort.  If Sangita Vidwãns are dedicated to their profession, language will not be a barrier.  You, who are standing today as the Number One in the world of Music, do whatever you can on these lines.  Let God be with you in your endeavours."  Ariyakkudi Ramanuja Aiyangãr was virtually moved to tears.  Hesitantly he spoke with a noticeable tremor in his voice, "In my life time, I have never been so honoured as this day" while taking his leave.  Next second Periyavã went back to his 'mounam' of being silent!
*   *   *   *   *
The Complete Song
Sri SubrahmaNyãya namasthe namasthe
Manasija koti koti lãvaNyãya  dheena saraNyãya
Bhusurãdi samasta jana poojitãbja saraNãya
Vãsuki takshakãdi Sarpa Swaroopa dharaNãya
Vasavãdi sakala deva vanditãya vareNyãya
Dãsa janãbhishta prada dakshatarãgra gaNyãya
Tãraka simhamukha soorapadmãsura samhartré
Tãpatraya haraNa nipuNa Tatvopadesa kartré
Veeranuta guruguhãya Agnãna Dwãnta Savitré
VijayavaLLi bhartre saktyãyudha dartré 
Dheerãya nata vidhãtre devaraja jãmãtré
Bhurãdi bhuvana Bhoga moksha pradãtré
Sri SubrahmaNyãya Namsté!

(To be continued with another topic.)