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On "Ezhai Etalan" peria tirumozhi.

From: Mani Varadarajan (mani_at_alum.calberkeley.org)
Date: Thu Aug 16 2001 - 13:20:47 PDT

Dear Members,

Regarding our discussion of the saulabhya (accessibility)
of the arcA form I wanted to share some associated insights 
sent to me by private email by Srirangam Periya Koyil 
Sri Sundara Rajan and another yet again by Sri Bharat:

[ From Sri T.S. Sundara Rajan ]  

Sri Bharat svAmin,

Many thanks for your posting on the "Ezhai Etalan" decad of 
peria tirumozhi highlighting the delicate sensibilities which 
our 'sampradAyam' had cultured around 'archA' worship.

May I make a limited supplementation?

The key phrase is, of course,
"SukrENa jyOtee.m.shi" ~~ the seeds of light ~~
occurring in from "ambhas/yapArE...."
which is the source of the tiru-vAi-mozhi
"viN-meedu iruppAi..."

There are some fine perceptions on 'archA', as in
~~ "ASritar-ukanda vaDivE... 
sarva-SaktanAi irukka-c-cheidE a-Saktanai-p-pOlavum,..., rakshakanAi
irukka-c-cheidE rakshyam pOlavum,...,
sarva-sulabhanAi-k-koNDu kOyil-kaLilum gr.hankaLilum...
ezhunt-aruLi-irukkum nilai."    

[meaning, the archA is "the endearing manifestation seen in the
Temple and individual abodes;   He assumes the form as is dear to the
devotees, and appears to be feeble - in the archA - despite that He is
omnipotent, an object which 'sues' for protection despite that He is the
Protector of all.--- Pillai Lokacharya, artha-panchakam.]

The venerable names forever remembered with this 'rakshyam' aspect of
archA, are of the noble souls who literally sacrificed their lives to
protect the "archA of archA-moorti-s", namperumAL:  they were peria
nambikaL, piLLai lOkAchArya, tiru-t-tAzhvarai dAsar.

It is significant that it is in the context of the great 'prapatti' 
that the 'sAulabhyam' of the 'archA' manifestation has been brought
out.  And the core doctrine of the 'vyAkhyAna' tradition holds
the Lord of Srirangam, both in peria perumAL and in namperumAL,
as the ultimate 'archA' manifestation. 

The "taru-tuyaram" decad on tiru-vittuva-k-kODu (perumAl tirumozhi), 
the "ulakam-uNDa peru-vAyA" decad on tiru-vEnkatam (tiru-vAi-mozhi) 
and the "Ezhai Etalan" decad (peria tirumozhi) 
constitute the  three jewels of prapatti.

Your remark in the periya nambi episode ["they had considered him as
just one of their own kind."] brings to the mind the Lord's own
observation in Bhagavad Gita, "ava-jAnanti mAm...mAnusheem tanum
ASritam..."

Thank you, Sri Bharat, for writing about the "EzhaiEtalan" decad.

aDiyEn rAmAnuja-dAsan,
T.S. Sundara Rajan, at Srirangam.

[ From Sri A. Bharat, translations by Mani ]

Sri Sundararajan Swamin

Your comments and extracts were most enjoyable and
enlightening.

In regard to your apt Gita quotation I am tempted to refer
to the comments of three great Acharyas on that particular
SlOka:

SrI BhAshyakArar

<mama apAra-kAruNya-audArya-sauSIlya-vAtsalyAdi-nibandhanam
  manushyatva-samASrayaNa-lakshaNam imam param bhAvam
 ajAnantah>

 [Translation: (they are) ignorant of my higher nature
  which is indescribable compassion, generosity, undiscriminating
  graciousness, parental love, etc. This nature of mine is the 
  reason I resort to a human form] 

SrI  DESikan

<yathA hiraNmaya mrNmaya ghaTayoh dravya-vaijAtyE'pi
  samsthAsAmyam  tadvat atrApi etc>

  [ Just as a golden pot and a clay pot, though made of
    totally different substances, are in the same state ... ]

SrI NambiLLai

(taniyan) ippaDi avatarittAl, pOmanru uDutta OliyalODE yAyiRRu
pOmadu...."ivan namakkAga pirandAn" enRu ninaikkaikkum
oruvarum illAdirukkiradiRE. "pirandAn" enRadutannaiye kuRRamAga
upapAdippArEyiRE uLLadu! (EeDu 3.5.6)

  [ I couldn't translate this beautiful sentiment properly -- 
    I will let someone more skilled attempt -- Mani ] 

SrI EmberumAnAr TiruvaDigaLe SaraNam!


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