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Copy of: Prapanna PaarijAtham-- Part 4: PramANa Paddhathi

From: V. Sadagopan (75041.3037_at_compuserve.com)
Date: Fri Dec 05 1997 - 04:34:15 PST

Dear Members of the Bhakthi Group :
On this SravaNam day , it is my pleasure to
forward you the weekly posting of mine for the SaraNAgathi
Journal . This posting has relevant information 
for the question of Sri Dileepan and the response
of Sri Kalale . These are the fundamental sources
for Akinchanyam , KaarpaNyam ,
Gopthruva VaraNam and the other two angAs 
of Prapatthi , which were elaborated by 
Nathamuni , RaamAnujA , Swami Desikan ,
PiLLai LokAchAr and  " the anyAs " . 

It is also interesting to note that the Abhaya
mudrA of the Lord is intrepreted as the command 
to the PrapannA not to repeat the prapatthi more than
once . 

V.Sadagopan  

---------- Forwarded Message ----------

From:   V. Sadagopan, 75041,3037
TO:     SR, INTERNET:Srengara@ford.com
CC:     vas, INTERNET:vasanthi@umich.edu
DATE:   12/4/97 9:36 PM

RE:     Copy of: Prapanna PaarijAtham-- Part 4: PramANa Paddhathi

The Scope of PramAN aPaddhathi
**************************************

The first of the ten chapters of Prapanna-
PaarijAtham is PramANa Paddhathi . There are
17 slOkAs in this chapter , which refert to 
the ancient and unimpeachable sources of
Prapatthi from passages found in Sruthis , 
Smruthis , PurANAs , AagamAs and the IthihAsAs . 
The purpose of this effort by our AchAryA is to establish 
the Vedic authority of Prapatthi as a doctrine 
and practise handed down to us from the prathama
AchArya( Sriman naarAyaNA ) down to the curent AchAryA . 

SlOkam 1
************

prapatthis thaitthireeyANAm vEdhE taavath vidheeyathE I
nyAsAkhyA saprayOgAsou vasranyEthi manthratha II

(Meaning ) : The first and the foremost authoritative 
statement on Prapatthi is found at the end of 
Thaitthireeya Upanishad (Sruthi ) . There it says
that Prapatthi has to be performed under its name 
nyAsam starting with the vEdha mantram commencing 
with the word " Vasuranya : " . This manthram describes 
for the first time prapatthi under its name of nyAsam and 
prescribes as well its modus operandi . 

( comments ) : We are starting here at the very beginning 
by looking  for authoritative and ancient references to prapatthi 
or nyAsam in Sruthis  . The roots of Prapatthi in ancient vEdhams 
are recognized from the many vEdha mantrams one
comes across in Rg Vedhic rks and KrishNa Yajur Vedhic mantrams .
Upanishads such as Taittireeya NaarAyana and SvEthasvatAra 
upanishads have authoritative references to Prapatthi ..
A passage from Katavalli sruthi is another oft-quoted authority 
for the doctrine of Prapatthi's origin from Sruthis . 

By choosing the word nyAsam , the Vedhic manthram 
reminds us that this doctrinr refers to a pledge , a pledge
of one's Self ( Jeevan ) to the Lord . 

Dr.S.M. Srinivasachari has covered the numerous passages of 
Rg vEdham to the basic principles of Prapatthi or SaraNAgathi . 
These rks refer to " an individual pleading his (or her ) inability
to achieve a desired object "  or goal such as freedom from the 
cycles of birth and death . He or she seeks prayerfully  divine 
intervention for success in such  efforts .

One of the oft-quoted rk ( Rg vEdham I.189.1)  starts with " AgnE 
naya supathArAyE---" . This manthram is found again in 
IsAvAsyOpanishad and Swami Desikan has commented 
on this rk in his Bhaashyam on the above upanishad .
The manthram has the following meaning : " Oh , Agni !
lead us along the auspicious path to remove all 
the obstacles coming in our way ; we shall offer unto Thee
salutations with the expression of NAMA: "(--tE nama-ukthim
vidhEma) .  Swami Desikan has connected the name Agni
here to the AntharyAmi Brahman and the word " NAMA : " to
the act of the SELF seeking the refuge in Lord and laying 
itself at His sacred feet .

Another Rg rk found in the 7th khAndham ( VIII.66.13)
invokes reverentially the Supreme Brahman as the 
only one to shower us with favour and that the jeevans are 
totally dependent on that supreme Brahman . It says :
" O Resplendent Self ! We are verily Yours , therefore , We ,  
the worshippers ( prapannAs ) , entirely depend on You .
There is none but only You to show us favor , 
O Bounteous divine power , invoked by ALL " 
( nahi tvadhanya: purUhutha kascchana 
magavannasthi marDithA ) 

The whole VIII.66 section of Rg vEdham is  a celebration
of the Supreme Brahman " as full of might and the revealer of 
wealth " , as "  the powerful Lord , purifier and master of all
forces" . The third rk salutes the Lord as the one , " who opens
the closed gates of wisdom and destroys the devil of dark 
evil forces " . In the fifth rk refers to the prayerful devotion 
of the Jeevan to the Lord this way : " Oh resplendent Self ,
praised by all, we hasten to bring to You our devotion and 
appreciation , which You have been expecting to receive from 
Your sincere devotees since ancient times ( vayam tattha Indra 
sam BHARAMASI yajnamuktham thuram vacha : ) .

The subsequent rk ( Rg VIII.66.7 ) eloquently states 
the mood of the Jeevan's prayerful devotion in a state of 
helpnessness to the Supreme Brahman this way : " Today ,
Yesterday , and ALL the days , let the resolute will power
(supreme Brahman ) accept our tribute to His full satisfaction .
We offer Him our reverence . Let Him now hasten here on
hearing our admiration ( tasma u adhya samanA sutham 
BHARA  nUnam bhUshatha  sruthE ) . 

In the 14th rk , the jeevan prays to the Supreme Lord 
to deliver them from this dire (spirtual ) poverty , 
hunger (for His presence ) and calumny ( arising 
from accumulation of sins due to doing things prohibted by
sAsthrAs and abandoing karmAs that should be performed ) .
The jeevan continues its prayer for protection with 
His wonderous might and thought . The jeevan declares 
with conviction : " O mightiest ! only You know the right way " .

In the VIII.19.5 rk , we come across the explicit statement 
the person( Jeevan )  , "  who offers prayer with the expression of 
NAMA : ( implying self-surrender ) is to be regarded
as one , who has performed a good scrifice (sOdhvarah: )
almost equivalent to the formal sacrifice done in the consecrated
fire by offering the faggots (samiths) along with the recitation 
of the manthrAs " ( ya samidhA ya aahUthee yO vEdhEna 
dhadhAsa marthO AgnayE I yO namasA svadhvara : II ) . 

The above rk and the others of the VIII th canto of Rg vEdham
leads onto the climatic statement embedded in  the famous
rk quoted above ( VIII. 66. 13 ) , which unequivocally states 
that none other than the Supreme Being is capable of protecting 
the Jeevan from  " the ocean of bondage " .

In a subsequent Canto ( X.63. 9 and 10 ) , the rks compare 
the Lord to a non-leaky boat that alone can safely take the jeevan
across the turbulent ocean of SamsAram ( dhaiveem naavam 
svaritrAm anAgasam asravantheemA ruhEmA svasthayE ) . 
The Lord is invoked here as " vessel divine , well-protecting ,
spacious , shining  and unmenaced , full of comforts ,
seamless , goodly constructed , fitted with fine oars , flawless 
and unsinkable (never-leaking )  " . 

In the previous rk the jeevan offered a moving prayer 
to the Lord in the unmistakable spirit of a true PrapannA 
this way : " In our conflicts or struggles of our
life , we invoke our Lord ( who is known by so many attributive 
names as ) the resplendent one , the deliverer from sins , 
the virtuous , the Divine , the Creator  , the Adorable , the Friendly ,
the Venerable , the Glorious one . We invoke You --for the acquisition
of (spiritual ) food and luxury and for our (spiritual) well-being " . 

These  are  the Vedhic PramANams for nyAsam to establish 
its  ancient roots .

V.Sadagopan