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SrI vishNu sahasranAmam - Slokam 59 - Part 1.

From: Narasimhan Krishnamachari (
Date: Mon Dec 20 1999 - 16:31:26 PST

SrI vishNu sahasranAmam - Slokam 59 - Part 1.

	vedAh svA'ngo'jitah kRshNo dRDhah sa'nkarshaNo'cyutah
	varuNo vAruNo vRkshah pushkarAksho mahaAmanaAh       

om vedhase namah
om svA'ngAya namah
om ajitAya namah
om kRshNAya namah
om dhRDAya namah
om sa'nkarshaNAya namah
om acyutAya namah
om varuNAya namah
om vAruNAya namah
om vRkshAya namah
om pushkarAkshAya namah
om mahA-manase namah

551. vedhAh - a) The Provider.
b) The Doer (of auspicious happenings).
c)  The Creator.

om vedhase namah.

SrI BhaTTar derives the meaning from "vidadhAti iti
vedhAh" - He is the Giver or Provider of unlimited and
varied objects of splendor.   SrI kRshNa datta
bhAradvAj gives the derivation "vidadhAti kAmAn
svajanAnAm iti vedhAh".   He also gives the reference
to kaThopanishad - "eko bahUnAm vidadhAti kAmAn"

SrI P. B. aNNa'ngarAcArya svAmi gives the second
interpretation - "anbargaLukku ma'ngalamAna
vibhava'ngaLiac ceibavar".  

SrI Sa'nkara bhAshyam is vidadhAti sRjati iti vidhAtA
vedhAh - The Creator.  In amarakoSa we have srashTA
prajApatir vedhA vidhAtA viSvasRT vidhih (1.17), and
the explanation vidadhAti karoti iti vedhAh, offered
by li'ngAyasUrin. 

552. svA'ngah - a) He who has the marks of sovereignty
which are His own.
		b) He who is both the Instrumental Cause and the
Material Cause of the Universe.
		c) He who has beautiful, well-proportioned limbs.
		d) He who, in the form of the Universe, moves by

The term a'nga here refers to the celestial marks of
sovereignty such as the chatra (umbrella), cAmara and
other things which are His own and unique (sva
a'ngah).   He is the Supreme King of all the worlds,
and has the unique marks associated with this.  SrI
kRshNadatta bhAradvAj gives the following explanation:
 "svanyante Sabdyante sUktibhiriti svAni; tAdRSAni
a'ngAni yasya iti svA'ngah".  

SrI Sa'nkara bhAshyam is "svayameva kAryasya karaNe
a'ngam sahakaroti iti svA'ngah" - He is Himself the
instrument in accomplishing His works.  The idea
communicated is that bhagavAn is the Material Cause as
well as the Instrumental Cause of this Universe (SrI
cinmayAnanda).    SrI cinmayAnanda also indicates that
the nAma can be interpreted to mean that bhagavAn has
beautiful, well-proportioned a'nga-s or limbs. 

SrI satyadevo vAsishTha uses the meaning a'ng - to go
(agi - gatyarthaka dhAtu), and gives the
interpretation that bhagavan has His movement by
Himself, unlike all the other life forms which move
only because He is present in them as the antaryAmi. 
When the self leaves the body, the body loses the
ability to move.   Unlike these, e.g., in the form of
the Sun, bhagavAn moves by Himself without the need
for any other external source.  

The dharma cakram writer gives the meaning that He is
One who helps Himself.  He observes that  meditation
on this nAma of mahAvishNu should reveal to us that
when we worship Him, there is no need for any external
help for us from anyone or anything in this world,
since all the things we need will be met from within
ourselves.   It is only when we go after material
pursuit that we need the support of others.  BhagavAn
is in the ultimate state where He needs nothing from
anyone or anything.  

553. ajitah - a) He who is unconquered, and
	b) He who is the Chief of the Unconquerable place
called ajita or SrIvaikunTha.
	c) He who took the amSAvatara in the 6th manvantara
as ajitah to help in churning the Milk Ocean.
	d) He who is unconquered in His vow to protect those
who have surrendered to Him.

(SrI BhaTTar):  ajitA, aparAjitA, etc. are also names
for paramapadam, and He is the Chief of SrIvaikunTham,
and so also He is called ajitah.  He and His abode SrI
vaikunTham and everything therein are composed of
celestial matter called Suddha sattva, which is not
under the sway of birth and death.  He is thus
unconquered by the sway of birth, aging, decay, and
death which are characteristic of those that pertain
to the world of prakRti.  SrI v.v. rAmAnujan gives
reference to SrI rAmAyaNam yuddha kANDam where
bhagavAn's nAma ajita occurs (120.16 -ajitah
khaDgadhRg vishNuh kRshNaScaiva bRhad balah).  Here
ajitah is interpreted by SrI P. S. kRshNasvAmi
iye'ngAr as referring bhagavAn being undefeated in His
ASrita samrakshNam or His vow to protect those who
have surrendered to Him even once).  

(SrI Sa'nkara):  na jita iti ajitah - One who has
never been conquered, and can never be conquered, is
ajitah.  SrI kRshNa datta bhAradvAj gives the
interpretation - na jitah kenApi tribhuvane iti
ajaitah - One who has never been conquered by anyone
ever in all the three worlds.  He has never been
conquered by anyone in any of His incarnations, and so
also He is ajitah.

He is satya svarUpi and dharma svarupi, and so also He
is unconquered and  unconquerable (dharma cakram) -
satyameva jayate.  The dharma cakram author gives
innumerable examples to illustrate that satya and
dharma are unconquerable, including those involving
prahlAda, hariScandra, the pANDavas, etc.  The lesson
to take from meditating on this nAma is the greatness
of dharma and satya, and the life led conforming to
these values. 

SrI rAdhAkRshNa SAstri gives yet another
interpretation based on SrImad bhAgavtam.   BhagavAn
SrIman nArAyaNa appeared as ajitah in the sixth
manvantara as the son of sambhUti and helped in the
churning of the Milk Ocean to get the amRta for the
deva-s.  He also took the kUrmAvatAra to support the
mandara mountain in the process - tatrApi devah
sambhUtyAm vairAjasya abhavat sutah  |  ajito nAma
bhgavAn amSena jagatah patih || (SrImad bhAgavatam

SrI satyadevo vAsishTha points out that there is a
question of one being conquered by another only when
they can be compared to each other.  In the case of
mahAvishNu, there is no one else to compare to Him,
and so there is no question of His being conquered by
any other, and so He is ajitah or unconquerable and

554. kRshNah - a) One who is always in a state of
Bliss (with His sport of creation etc.).
             b) The Dark-hued.
c) He who irresistibly attracts His devotees to Him
through His infinite kalyANa guNa-s.
d) He who cultivates the Earth like a plough and makes
it suitable for life forms to form and nourish.
e) He who appeared as veda vyAsa or kRshNa dvaipAyana.
f) He who cultivates the minds of devotees by
providing the veda-s in His incarnation as kRshNa
g) The Dark, Mysterious, and Unknowable except by deep

This nAma occurred earlier as nAma 58.  Please refer
to the detailed interpretation provided there as well.
The first four interpretations were covered there. 
Some additional details are provided here.  

In support of interpretation (a), SrI v.v. rAmAnujan
observes that unlike in rAma incarnation where
bhagavAn went through enormous difficulties - nATTil
piRandu paDAdana paTTu - nammAzhvAr tiruvAimozhi
7.5.2, in kRshNa incarnation it was "inbuRum
iv-viLaiyATTuDaiyAnaip peRRu (tiruvAimozhi 3.10.7)",
"kanRinai vAlOlai kaTTi (periAzhvAr tirumozhi 2.4.8)",
etc.  Another anubhavam of SrI v.v. rAmAnujan is that
bhagavAn is laughing at us mockingly, seeing that we
are not putting to good use the hands and legs and all
the indriya-s He gave us to help us attain Him, but
instead we are misusing these and getting into the
cycle of birth and rebirth. 
Under the current nAma, SrI ParASara BhaTTar gives one
more of his anubhava-s of this nAma, and indicates
that the Suddha sattva material which His body is made
of has a fascinating complexion dark like the blue
cloud.  One of the grammar rules (uNAdi sutra 3.4)
states that when the root kRsh - to plough is followed
by affix nak, it means one of the colors - kRsher
varNe.  It is interesting to note that one name for
grapes is kRshNA because of this connotation of color.
 So also, iron is called kRshNA because of its black
color.  This latter meaning is used to explain the
significance of bhagavAn's nAma as kRshNa in
mahAbhArata SAnti parva 143.49 - 

	kRshAmi medinIm pArtha! bhUtvA kRshNAyaso mahAn      
	kRshNo varNaSca me yasmAt tena kRshNoham arjuna      

This is a slight variation of the Sloka also quoted
from mahAbhArata under the explanation given under
nAma 58.  The two Sloka-s are too similar to each
other to suggest that these are variants of the same
reference.  I do not have the original version of
mahAbhArata to check the authenticity of the

In support of interpretation (b), SrI v.v. rAmAnujan
gives references to the following:  kaNNan enum karum
daivam (nAcciyAr tirumozhi 3.1), kariyAn oru kALai
(tirumozhi 3.7.), etc. 

SrI kRshNa datta bhAradvAj gives the following
explanation along the lines of interpretation : 
karshati bhagavAn AtmAnam prati vayovarNa rUpaa
lAvaNya madhurI rasotkarsheNa iti kRshNah, or kRshate
AtmAnam prati bhaktAn sa-soundaryeNa iti kRshNah,
based on (kRsha vilekhanam AkarshNam ca).   SrI
satyadevo vAsishTha and others also support this
interpretation along with the other two. 

SrI Sa'nkara interprets this instance of the nAma of
kRshNah as referring to veda vyAsa (e), who is none
other than an incarnation of bhagavaAn according to
SrI vishNupurANa - kRshNadvaipAyanam vyAsam viddhi
nArAyaNam prabhum   |  ko hyanayh puNDarIkAkshAn
mahAbhAratakRt bhavet (VP 3.4.5).

The dharma cakram writer uses the concept of bhagavAn
being like a plough (the basis of interpretation d),
combines this with SrI Sa'nkara's interpretation (e),
and offers a new interpretation (f).   His anubhavam
is that in the form of veda vyAsa, bhagavAn cultivates
the minds of people by providing to us the veda-s, and
so vyAsa, who is none other than nArAyaNa, is referred
to by the nAma kRshNa here.

SrI cinmayAnanda uses the meaning "dark" for the word
kRshNa, and suggests that this nAma of bhagavAn
signifies the "unknown factor" that expresses through
us - whose manifestations are all our physical,
mental, and intellectual capabilities.  Except by deep
and sincere devotion, He cannot be comprehended, and
so He is kRshNah - Dark and Mysterious.

-To be continued.

-dAsan kRshNamAcAryan

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