You are here: Sri Vaishnava Home Page : Bhakti List : Archives : December 1996

9th day of Danur Maasam: GovindhA's names--Part 2

From: V. Sadagopan (75041.3037_at_compuserve.com)
Date: Sun Dec 22 1996 - 15:32:08 PST

Dear Govindha Premis : 

On this ninth day of Margazhi Month , We will
continue to focus on the significance of the name 
GovindhA for the Lord . We shall continue with the insights
provided by Sri S.KrishNa Iyengar of SummApatti .

Earlier , we indicated that the name Govindha is
renowned for its Vedic Connotations , just as the 
name GodhA . For instance , the name has  been 
understood as " GObhi: Veda Vaakhthya: vEdyatE
ithi Govinda : " (i-e)., He is the one that is understood by 
the Veda mantrAs . Another  meaning for the name can be 
found in the statement : " SarvE vedA yadh padhamAmananthi ",
(i-e) He is the one at whose lotus feet all the VedAs long 
to be at . Yet anothe r definition of the name of GovindhA
is : Sarve VedA yathrai kam bhavanthi (i-e) ., The one in
whom all the Vedas become happy through their union. 
Ka means Brahman in the Vedic terminology . The literal
translation that the  Vedas become Brahman suggests that 
they merge with Him as His svAsam . Such a Veda Purushan 
is Govindhan . In His own words , the GeethAcharyan has 
revealed that he is the one to be known by all of the Vedas
( Vedaisccha Sarvai : ahameva Vedha : ) . 

Govindhan is the reason for his name because all the 
praise/sthothram reach Him amd Him only . All archanAs
like the one ArjunA did for Lord Siva arrived at His feet . 
This si indicated by the following verse :

gowrevaishA tathaa vANi taam cha yath vindatE bhavAn I
Govindasthu tathO Deva munibhi : kathyatE BhavAn II

( Meaning) : Gow : means all sounds or words or Vedic salutations.
Since Govindhan receives all these salutations independent
of whomever they are addressed to as eulogies , the sages declare
Him to be Govindhan . 

In the Vaarthikam of PaNIni's suthrAs on grammar , it is said
that the word GovindhA is the indicator or sign or code (SamjnA )
for Sriman NaarayaNA .

Thirumazhisai  has celebrarated the Sabdha Vaasyatvam of 
Govindhan this way : " SollinAl thodarchi nee, sollapadum
poruLum nee" . There is nothing in this world that is outside 
His creation and they are linked together with Him as Sarira -
Saariree tatvam . 

Even though there are thousands of names for Sriman NarAyaNA ,
the one name that is chosen unfailingly for Sankeerthanam is
"GovindhAn ". The hills of Thirupathi echo with the sounds of 
"GovindhA , GovindhA " as Karpooratthi for Lord SrinivasA is made.
In the lower Thirupathi , the Lord's name accordingly 
is GovindarAjan . 

One of the two key parts of the name Govindha is the gO sabdham.
This sabdham has many meanings : (1) Moksham (2) speeding Arrow
(3) ow (4) Divine speech (5) VajrA weapon (6) JnaankkaNN (7) sight 
(8) Flame/JwAlai (9) Bhumi (10) victory .

The second part of the name Govindhan is Vindhan and the latter is
derived from the root (DhAthu ) Vidh. This root has the following four
meanings : (1) Arithal or Cognition (2 ) Adaithal or obtainment 
(3) Irutthal or being there and (4) Vicharitthal or inquiring . 

When the two roots are united to form the Govindha Naamam ,
it stands for the one who is the Moksha Pradhan ( One who can
bless us with Moksham or release from the cycles of births and
deaths ) or Veda Vedyan ( One who is understood by the manthrAs
of the VedAs ) , one who gave the Vajra weapon to IndrA and who
incarnated as the DasAvathara murthys . 

There are also additional meanings for the Govindha Naamam .
One of the meanikngs of gO sabdham is Jyothi or resplendent flame.
Unlike other flames , this flame is svayam Jyothi (NaarayaNa parO jyothi 
according to Vedam ) . That is why  nammAzhwAr addresses Him as
" Paramjyothi GovindhA " .

GidhOpanishad and GodhOpanishad
*******************************************

In the previous posting and this posting , we covered the many
esoteric meanings of the name of the Lord's consort, GodhA
and the Lord eulogised by the name of GovindhA . Their aruLiccheyalgaL
ar eknown as GodhOpanishad and gitOpanishad respectively 
and are intended for our salvation . They practise Ekaseshithva Yogam .
GodhA states in one of Her Upanishads ( Naacchiyar Thirumozhi ) :
" uNbathu sollil ulagaLanthAn Vaaiamudham " . She was addressing
the divine Panchajanyam (conch ) and asking about the nature of 
the  taste of the Lord"s lips and mouth, where it rests during 
the time of battle . She herself guesses it and describes it in the above
manner. The inner meaning of this Paasuram passage is : For the mind
of the BhagavathAs , the most delectable and desirable  item is 
the nectar that flowed form the Lord's lips and mouth 
as the Rahasya Trayam . 

The Taittiriya Prasnam states in this conrext : " EKAAKSHARAM
DWIPADHAM SHATPADHAAM CHA VAACHAM DEVAA 
UPAJEEVANTHI VISWE  VAACHAM DEVAA UPAJEEVANTHI VISWE"
(I-E) .,  Om is the Ekaksharam or PraNavam . The dwi padhams are 
the syllables "NamO " and NaarayaNAya ". This is the first rahasyam 
or Moola Manthram . The sacred Dvayam has six syllables and 
is the second rahasyam . This is known as the Manthra rathnam .
The third Rahasyam is indicated by the letter cha in the above Upanishadic 
passage and stands for the Sarama skokam taught for the benefit of
Arjuna and us by GeethAchAryan. These three rahasyams are the 
means for the life and the  well being of all prapannAs 
( SarvE devA ; Upajeevanthi ). By the Rahasya Traya 
anusandhAnuAnam , GodhA is very pleased with the PrapannAs 
as suggested by the Veda Mnathram : SaanO havam JushathAm
Indrapathnee ". Indra Pathnee or IndrA is the name of Bhu Devi 
indicated in Bhu Sooktham and Godha is the incarnation in kali
Yugam of Bhu Devi at Srivilliputthur as the daughter of PeriyAzhwAr .

There are 700 verses in Srimadh Bhagavadh GitA . There are only 
30 Paasurams in Thruppavai. In GitA , the Lord pointed out the 
Siddha Dharma with the words, Sarva DharMaan Parithyajya 
Maamekam charaNam vrja.e indicated the means for our 
salvation in th form of command ( AjnA rupam ). AndAL 
followed that SaraNAgathi Dharmam to set us an example .
She had the Aacharam to practise this AjnA of Her Lord on 
their earth . This  according to the learned people is a 
demonstration of the superiority of AchAram over AjnA as
revealed by AndAL through Her GodhOpanishad. 

She is both "our father and mother and AchArya" . Let us 
salute Her and her inseparable consort and conclude this
section of the special postings for Marghazhi month .

GohA--Govindha divya dampathyai Namo Nama:

Sri VaishNava Daasan ,
Oppiliappan Koil Varadachari Sadagopan