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Stotras of Vedanta Desika

by Sri D. Ramaswamy Ayyangar
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1. Hayagriva Stotra

This is the earliest of the stotras of Vedanta Desika, sung as soon as he became the recipient of the grace of Lord Hayagriva, the God of learning. It consists of 32 slokas (reminiscent of the 32 Brahma Vidyas) plus one sloka added as phalasruti, probably at a later time as it refers to the author's title Kavitarkika Kesari. Sloka 7 tells us how gods, goddesses and sages reputed to be repositories of knowledge shine only because of having obtained a bit of Hayagriva's power. Slokas 14 and 15 tell us that a contemplation of this Lord will give us mastery over speech. Sloka 27 is seen to be invariably uttered as a prayer by scholars and pandits before they start discourses, and sloka 28 by combatants in polemic debates. Sloka 32 is the dhyana sloka.

More Details - Devanagari Text

2. Garuda Panchasat

This stotra, couched in the grand sragdhara metre (21 syllables to a quarter), is in praise of Garuda, the vehicle of Vishnu and also the ensign on His banner. Garuda is celebrated as Vedaatma or embodiment of the Vedas. It was Garuda that gave upadesa of Hayagriva mantra to Desika atop the hill in Tiruvahindrapuram and hence out of gratitude Desika must have sung this hymn. Sloka 52 says that Garuda had also laid a command on him in this behalf. The stotra consists of five sections as indicated in the stotra itself. For sheer rhythm and flow of words this stotra has no equal. Several sabda-chitras add to its greatness. Sloka 6 reckons from 1 to infinity. Above all this stotra is a talismanic recipe for all poisons, diseases etc. The very first sloka enshrines the Garuda mantra.

Devanagari Text

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Last modified: Mon Mar 29 11:43:50 PST