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Sri Vaikunta EkAdasi day

From: Sadagopan (sgopan_at_computer.net)
Date: Sun Dec 19 1999 - 05:35:05 PST

Dear BhakthAs :
 
on this holiest of holy days , it is a bhAgyam to reflect 
on Sri SampathkumAran's question for "men folk" as to
what they should be doing in the month of Marghazhi
in addition to Thiruppaavai study .The short answer 
is to recognize this day as the day of birth of
Githai and perform GithA paarAyaNam . If all the 700
slOkams are hard to recite , atleast the 18th chapter housing
the Charama slOkam should be recited.If that is too long ,
one should ( Men and Women) recite and reflect upon
the Charama slOkam itself and derive comfort from
the Lord's assurance given there . If one has more time , 
one can read the magnificient commentaries of 
the AchAryAs of their own sampradhAyams on 
the Charama slOkam . One can start with GithArtha 
Sangraham of AlavandhAr , move on to the GitA BhAshyam
of AchArya RaamAnujA , Swamy Desikan's many commentaries
in Desika Prabhandham , Chillarai Rahasyams and 
Srimath Rahasya Thraya Saaram ,Taathparya Chandrikai 
and PiLLai LokacchAr's rahasya granthams dealing with
Charama slOkam . That would be a magnificient
way to spend the day to compliment the daily 
anushtAnams .   

Coming back to the question of Sri Sampath Kumar ,
Sri Krishna Kalale seems to have anticipated this question
and has asked us to do GitA paarAyaNam today on this Fourth
day of Thiruppaavai Nonbu month .Our most compassionate
ThaayAr has already hinted through the Paasuram of the day ,
as to whom we should pray to on this day .She starts Her 
Fourth paasuram of ThiruppAvai with the words :

 "Aazhimazhaik KaNNA -- " and gives us the clue.

She concludes this paasuram with a request on behalf of 
all of us to Her most compassionate Lord :

"Vaazha ulahinil peythidAi, naangaLum
 Maargazhi neerAda mahinzhthElOrempaavAi". 

The object of Her prayer is Aazhi Mazhail KaNNan, 
our GithAchAryan . The boon She seeks from the author
of GithOpanishad in Her GodhOpanishad is the subiksham
( auspiciousness ) of the world and its beings through
His aruL mazhai and assurance , " Maa Sucha:". That 
is the central message of " NeerAdal " for us .

Regarding who is the one that we pray to for the life-
giving rains , GitAchAryan ,as pointed out by our 
poorvAchAryAs, has already indicated in His upadEsam 
to Arjunan that He is THE nirvAhakan (Commnader, 
Ordainer) of the life giving Rains and thereby 
Namm Vaazhvu :

" tapAmyahamaham varsham nigruNaamuthsrujAmi cha" .
 
In this fourth ThiruppAvai paasuram , Andal also
salutes three of the five aayudhams of PadhmanAbhan and 
seeks His protection in the context of asking 
for the blessings of the three rains during 
the month :

"PaRpanAbhan kaiyyil AAZHI pOl minni ,
 VALAMPURI pOl ninRathirnthu , ThAzhAthE
 SAARNGAM uthaittha sara mazhai pOl 
 Vaazha ulahinil peythidAi--" 

The essence of the prayers of PanchAyudha 
SthOthram and Sri Dwaadasa Naama panchara
SthOthram is  the removal of one's fears
and worries (Maa Sucha:). That message seems 
to be housed in this ThiruppAvai Paasuram.

The resplendent disc(Sudarsanam ,the Chakram 
of the VishNu) , the Valampuri Sanghu ( Sasi kOti
thulyam Paanchajanyam ) and the Saarngam 
( the mighty KodhaNDam of the Lord , which 
drives away the fear of prapannAs immediately/
SurANAm chEthAmsi nirmuktha bhayAni sadhya:)
are invoked here. These Aayudhams serve the Lord
and obey His command to banish the fear of 
the Bhaktha Janams .   

When one thinks of the Lord's charama slOkam ,
the ArchA murthys of  two divya dEsam come to my
mind immediately : (1) ThiruviNNagarappan of
Oppiliappan Koil , where NammAzhwAr peformed
his Prapatthi ; here , the Lord standing tall
displays the words from His charama slOkam:
" MaamEkam SaraNam vraja". on His varadha Hastham 
(2) Lord VaradarAjan of Atthigiri , who displays on 
His right hand , the other important message for 
our Vaazhvu  ,"Maa Sucha:"  . he seems to say: "Please 
seek a sadAchAryan and perform prapatthi through 
him to Me and be rid of all your Bharams (burdens)".

AdiyEn will conclude this Sri Vaikunta EkAdasi related
posting during this Brahma muhUrtham with a response to
another query from a dear BhakthA . His question was ,
" Why Bhagavaan gives His sevai to us in Mohini alankAram ?".
This is also related to "Maa Sucha:" aspect of 
His upadEsam . Arayar sEvai on the 8th day of pahal
patthu uthsavam seems to support the tatthvam behind 
this Mohini alankAram . The purANic episode enacted by 
the Arayars going back to the time of Thiruvarangap-
PerumAL Arayar, the son of AlavandhAr , is amrutha
mathanam or churning of the Milky Ocean ( ThiruppARkkadal/
KshIrAbdhi) to get nectar for the devAs and distracting
the asurAs thru Mohini alnakAram .The asurAs lost out
due to their precoccupaton with the feminine beauty of 
the Lord as Mohini , the enchantress .

The tatthuvam behind the Mohini alankAram is 
the importance of removing three kinds of 
desires for a mumukshu ( one desiring Moksham ):
maNNAsai , PonnAsai and PeNNAsai( the hankering 
for land/property  , wealth and women). AzhwArs
were  men , with the exception of GodhA PirAtti .
Her Kaamam was for Her Lord , GitAchAryan. She prays
for us , when She says: "MaRRai namm KaamangaL 
MaaRRElOrempAvAi".  AzhwArs like Thirumangai, 
ThoNDaraDippodi have been tempted by one 
or more of the above three desires and 
particularly by PeNNAsai (SiRRinbam).That is why,
we hear at the very beginning of Kaliyan's Periya 
Thirumozhi (VaadinEn) , his regrets of having wasted 
his time on amorous pursuits and then being saved from
ultimate destruction thru the upadEsam of AshtAksharam from 
the Lord Himself.In Periya Thirumozhi paasurams on
Badari( PTM 1.3) , Kaliyan gives us his upadEsam again
on the perils of chasing SiRRinbam. In the NaimichAraNyam
paasurams(PTM 1.6) , this thought persists in the mind 
of kaliyan . He reverts to the concept of wasted days
chasing SiRRinbam in the Thiruvenkatam paasurams( PTM 1.9.2)
and states movingly , " theriyEn BaalakanAi pala
theemaikaL seythumittEn". At the end of the decad
of PTM 1.10 , Kaliyan is grateful for the blessings
of the Lord of Thirumalai , which banished the three
kinds of virOdhis for MokshAnubhavam , MaNNAsai,
PonnAsai and PeNNAsai . Kaliyan declares hence
with a with a great sense of relief:

" vandhaai yenn manam puhunthAi manni ninRAi 
  nandhAtha kozhum suDarE yengaL NampI
  ChinthAmaNiyE ThiruvEnkatam mEya-
  YenthAi ,ini yaann unnai YenRum VidEnE "
  Periya Thirumozhi: 1.10.9

Our Lord's sevai in Mohini alankAram is
not only to delight us with His LaavaNyam
but also to remind us of the lot of asurAs
and their immense loss due to their hankerings
after femenine beauty during the time of
the distribution of the nectar of Moksham .
Our Lord gave the DevAs the nectar to partake
and for Himself enjoyed the PeNNamudhu , the other
feminine nectar that arose from the milky Ocean,
Sri MahA Lakshmi ThiruviNNagarappan Paasuram 
of kaliyan : "amuthi varum PeNnamudhuNda vempirAnE
:PTM 6.1.2). The beautiful details of
amrutha mathanam , MahA Lakshmi's appearance 
out of the Milky ocean , Her abhishEkam prior
to marrying the Lord are described in the eighth
canto of Srimath BhAgavatham and summarized in
the 13th slOkam of Sri Sthuthi of Swamy Desikan.

On the Sri Vaikunta EkAdasi day , NamperumAl through 
His Mohini alankAram is also reminding us about 
His consort as the essential nature of upAyam and UpEyam 
since She shares equally His Vibhuthvam ,Isvarathvam ,
Bhagavath Seshathvam and Paaratantryam .We will conclude 
this special posting for Sri Vaikunta EkAdasi day 
with a prayer to the " Sakala Bhuvana prArthanA
Kaamadhenu ", Our ThAyAr , MahA Lakshmi:

" maanAthITha praThitha vibhavAm MangaLam MangaLAnAm
  vaksha: peeDim MadhuvijayinO BhUshayanthIm svakAnthyA
  prathyakshaanusrvitha MahimA PrArta nInAm PrajAnAm
  SrEyOmUrthim SRIYAM ASARANA : THVAAM SARANYAAM PRAPADHYE " 

  Sri Sthuthi of Swami Deikan: slOkam 1

Vasumathi SamEtha ThiruviNNagarappan ThiruvadigaLE SaraNam ,
Daasan ,Oppiliappan Koil VaradAchAri Sadagopan 
Pramaathi Sri Vaikunta EkAdasi dinam .