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Part I Alwars- Section 2.5 ( 2) Nammalwar ( contd)
Date: Sat Apr 27 1996 - 15:34:50 PDT

Dear Bhagavatas,
Please find enclosed Section 2.5 (2) on Nammalwar in my Series Part I -
You may bring to my notice by private mail any errors, omissions or additions
to enable me to verify and correct my edition. Thanks.
Anbil Ramaswamy

Part I - Alwars - Section 2.5 (.2 )  Nammalwar (Contd)

This is considered to be the essence of Atharvana Veda.All the 87 verses in
this are in Venbaa and in Antaadhi style.In grandeur of expression and the
depth of meaning it is really great. Hence, it is called 'Periya
Tiruvantadhi'.Another reason for this name is as stated by the Alwar himself,
the Lord of the entire universe entered  the Alwar and became ' contained' in
him and therefore the Alwar was greater than the Lord himself! Some of the
sentiments expressed, the queries posed by the Alwar really reveal a kind of
intimacy  in his relation to the Lord (e.g) in Verse 16,on Vaamana Avatar-

Seeral Pirandhu Sirappaal Valaraadhu /  
Per Vaamanan Aagaakkaal Peraala /  Maarbu Aarap 
Pulgi Nee Undu Umizhndha Bhoomi Neer Yerpar idhe / 
Sollu Nee Yaam Ariyach choozhndhu /

" How come" he asks, " without living up to your numerous glorious names and
being known as 'well born' and 'well brought up' - you took the Avatar as a
dwarf with the name of Vaamana.- a despicable dwarf who cannot boast of any
merit of birth or upbringing ? Perhaps, you thought that only by assuming
such a ridiculous form could you go abegging for a gift of earth. And, what
earth?. YOUR earth that you embraced; YOUR earth that you gulped; YOUR earth
that you released at the time of a new Kalpa. Even though such a earth was
YOUR VERY OWN, why on earth did you beg of Bali to 'gift' it to you with the
symbolic pouring of water? I really need an explanation for this queer act of
Pulgi : Embraced, Peraalan : renowned with glorious names.

In verse 75, he refers to ' THE CONTAINER BEING CONTAINED'

Puviyum Iru Visumbhum Ninnagatha Nee En /
Seviyin Vazhi Pugundhu Ennullaai- Avivinri /
Yaan Periyan Nee Periyei! Enbhathanai Yaar Arivaar?/
Oon Parugu Nemiyaai ! Ullu!

" O! Lord! You hold a discus which is capable of devouring all flesh; This
world and Paramapada are contained in you; Thus, you are the Lord of both the
worlds ( Ubhaya Vibhuti Nathan). How come, while this being so, you chose to
enter me through my auditory faculty and you  became contained in me and that
too permanently? Now that you are contained in me irretrievably, who can say
which one of us is greater than the other? If you know, you may yourself
explain this conundrum (and  admit your defeat! )

In verse 86, the Alwarwonders how people could save themselves when they have
absolutely no thought of salvation which Lord Narayana alone can grant.

Kaar Kalandha Meniyaan Kai Kalandha Aazhiyaan /
Paar Kalandha Vul Vayirraan, Paambanaiyaan - Seer Kalandha /
Sol Ninaindhu Pokkaarael Soozh Vinaiyin Aazh Thuyarai \
Enn Ninainthu Pokkuvaar Ippodhu /

" People of the world are wasting their time without experiencing the bliss
of the Lord's names; The Lord is of the color of the Azure skies; He has the
divine discus in his hand; At the time of deluge, he keeps the worlds in
'safe custody' in his stomach and protects them; He reclines on the serpent
couch. If only people should talk of these facts, they can free themselves
from all sins. Without doing this, why are they wasting their lifetime? I
wonder how they are able to do this and how else could they ever hope to rid
themselves of sins."

Thanian on Periya Tiruvantadhi ( composed by Emperumaanaar)
Mundutra Nenje! Muyatri Dharithu  Uraithu / 
Vandhithu Vayaara Vaazhthiye - Sandham /
Uru Koorum Solai Soozh Moympoom Porunal /
Kurukooran Maaran Per Kooru /

"O! My Mind! You desire to proceed to the great Nammalwar well  before me
 all for my good. Please inform the Alwar of my plight. Bow to him; Praise
him to your heart's content. He is the Lord of the grove full of honey filled
flowers in the holy city of Tirukkurugur which stands on the banks of the
river Tamraparni. He is also called Maaran. Always recite his names"

The word Voimozhi is derived from Vaymai + Mozhi =Truth + Exposition. 'Tiru'
also denotes greatness. Hence, Tiruvoimozhi means ' Exposition of great
truths'. The Vedas are also called Voimozhi. Thus, Tiruvoimozhi also means
Vedas.  It is said that the deities in the 108 Divyadesams came to where
Nammalwar lived under the tamarind tree and gave him Darshan and hear his

As in Tiruviruttam, the Alwar expresses his sentiments in the triple capacity
of Lady love ( Paraankusa Nayaki), her mother and her friend. In
Tiruvoimozhi, the Alwar firmly establishes that Lord Narayan is THE Paramatma
and Prapatti is THE only way to reach him easily. He passionately refers to
the ' Leela' of the Lord in his 'Vibhava' especially in Krishna Avatara.

In 7/9/1 and 7/9 /2, the Alawar explains how the Lord used him as an
instument for publishing His great epic in Tamil. By this, the Lord invested
the Alwar with all the credits for the work while in fact, says the Alwar,
the work was actually the handiwork of the Lord himself.

Yenraikkum Yennai Uyyakkondu Pogiya / 
Anraikkanru Yennai Thannaakki Yennaal Thannai /
In Tamizh Paadiya Eesanai Aadhiyaai / 
Ninra Yen Sodhiyai En Solli Nirpano? /

The Lord has deemed me worthy of being redeemed and has made me his worthy
servant. He sang His song in chaste Tamil making me an instrument for His
purpose. By what words can I praise this primordial, resplendent Lord? ( I
have no words left to do this ).
This is reminiscent of what Lord Krishna says in Bhagavad Gita to Arjuna
viz., that all the warriors on the Kaurava side had already been destroyed by
His Sankalpa and Arjuna was only a mere 'Vyaja' (pretext) in their slaying
 In the case of the Alwar, however, a
' Naichya Anusandhana' can be noticed in his statement.

In 7/9/2-
En Solli Nirpan? En Innuyir Inru Onraai /
En Sollaal Yaan Sonna Inkavi Enpithu /
Than Sollaal Thaan Thannai Keerthitha Maayan,  En /
Mun Sollum Moovuraagum Mudhalvane /

The wonderful Lord utilized me as an instrument for composing His own poem in
His own words; But, He has made me popular as if I were the one who had
composed His words. Even my life has become worthy. Who else can render this
magical phenomenon than the 
' Prime Inter Pares' of the triumvirate? By what words can I describe this
wonder of wonders of metamorphasizing a worthless person like me into a
worthy one?"

 In 10 / 8 / 9, he asks, why the Lord who had ignored him for so long
suddenly discovered him as worthy of his grace by entering his little heart
NOW. Why if I were worthy, did he let me languish so far to be swayed by the
five sensual organs? The Lord who has his abode in Tiruppernagar owes me an
explanation for his former apathy and his newfound sympathy"

Inru Ennai Porul Aakki Thannai Ennul Vaithaan /
Anru Ennai Puram Poga Punarthidu En Seivaan? /
Kunrenna Thigazh Maadangal Soozh Thirup Peraan /
Onru Enakku Arul Seyya Unarthal Urrene ?

When Nanjeeyar asked Bhattar, his Guruas to what reply the Lord gave to this
query, Bhattar answered " How could he possibly give an answer? Ashamed of
his own delay in running to the succour of the devotee, the Lord became
totally silenced" This is the description given by Periyavachan Pillai. A
more detailed description given by Nampillai in this regard can be gleaned
from the ' Eedu'.

We can go on enjoying the sentiments expressed in almost every verse of the
Alwar but due to time and space restraints, we have to take a few of them.
 For now, we shall consider the Thanians 
( dedicatory verses ) on Tiruvoimozhi.

1. Composed by Sriman Nathamuni

Bhaktaamrutam Viswa Janaanu Modhanam /
Sarvarthatham Sri Sadakopa Vaang Mayam /
Sahasra Sakha Upanishad Samaagamam /
Namaami Aham Draavida Veda Saagaram /

" Nammalwar's ' Arulicheyal' is like nectar to the Bhaktas; showers happiness
to one and all; Determines things that alone are permanent; is equal to the
thousand branched Upanishads; I protrate before this ocean of Tamil Vedas."

2. Composed by Iswara Muni

Tiru Vazhudi Nadu Enrum Then Kurugur Enrum /
Maruv Iniya Vaan Porunal Enrum - Aru Maraikal /
Antaadhi Seidhaan Adiyinaiye Eppozhudhum /
Sinthiyaay Nenje! Thelindhu "

"O! My mind! Always contemplate on the feet of Sadakopa who rendered the
Vedas in Antaadhi style in Tamil. Think always of Tiruvazhudhi Naadu,
Tirukkurugur, and the beautiful river Tamraparni". The Alwar has used these
three in his signature verses.

3. Composed by Sottai Nambikal

Manathaalum Vaayaalum Van Kurugur Penum /
Inathaarai Allaadu Irainjen - Danathaalum /
Edum Kuraivilen Enthai Sadakopan /
Paathankal Yaamudaiya Patru /

" I will always worship by mind and words the prosperous Kurugur populated by
Bhaktas. I will never even think of others; Also, I am not lacking in
(spiritual) wealth; The feet of Sadakopa who is verily like my father are my
refuge forever."

4. Composed by Ananthaalwaan

Yeindha Perum Keerthi Iraamaanuja Munithan /
Vaainda Malarp Paatham Vanangukiren - Aaindha Perum /
Seeraar Sadakopan Senthamizh Vedam Tharikkum /
Peraadha Ullam pera /

" I bow at the feet of Sri Ramanuja ( Emperumanar) who is praised by one and
all; By this, I will acquire the capacity to learn and understand
Tiruvoimozhi, which is Veda composed in Tamil by Sri Sadakopa"

5.Composed by Bhattar

Vaan Thigazhum Solai Madhil Arangar Van Pugazh Mel /
Aanra Tamizh Maraigal Aayiramum - Eenra /
Mudhal Thaai Sadakopan Moymbaal Valartha /
Edhat Thaai Eraamaanujan /

" Srirangam is surrounded by groves and ramparts that are sky high;
Tiruvoimaozhi's 1000 odd verses are verily the Vedas which proclaim the
auspicious qualities of Sri Ranganatha. The natural
 ( biological) mother of this Tamil Vedas is Sri Sadakopan. Emperumaanaar is
the fostermother who nurtured and nourished it "
Since Ramanuja based his entire Kalakshepam discourses on Tiruvoimozhi, he is
considered the 'foster mother' while Nammalwar was its ' natural mother' who
gave birth to it.

6. Composed also by Bhattar

Mikka Irai Nilaiyum Meyyaam Uyir Nilaiyum /
Thakka Neriyum Tadaiyaagi - Thokkiyalum /
Oozh Vinaiyum Vaazh vinaiyum Odhum Kurugaiyor Kone /
Yaazhin Isai Vedath Eyal" /

" The Tamil Vedam of Tiruvoimozhi composed by Kurugai Piraan (Nammalwar)
contains the five great realities viz, (i) the nature of the Eternal
Paramatma (ii) the nature of the eternal Jeevatma 
(iii) the means for the Jeevatma to attain the goal of  Paramatma 
(iv) the impediments on the way and (v) the goal of ultimate life of
happiness in Moksha."

Divya Desams consecrated by Nammalwar 
1. Tiruvarangam 
2. Tiruppernagar 
4. Tiruvinnagar 
5. Tirukkannapuram 
7. Tirumogur 
8.Tiruk Kurugur 
9.Alwar Tirunagari 
10. Sirivaramangai 
11. Tiruppulingudi 
12, Tirupperai 
13. Srivaikuntam
14. Varagunamangai 
15. Perun kulam 
16. Tirukkurungudi 
20. Tirumoozhikkalam 
22.Tiru vanparisaaram
24. Tirunaavaai 
25. Tiruvallavazh 
27. Tiruvattaar 
28. Tirukkadithaanam 
29.Tiru vaaran vilai 
30. Tiruvenkadam
31. Tiruvayodhya 
32. Dwaaraka 
34. Tiruppaarkadal and 
35. Paramapadam.