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From: Parthasarati Dileepan (MFPD_at_UTCVM.UTC.EDU)
Date: Wed Feb 15 1995 - 17:31:18 PST
In this continuing series of twelve posts, twelve of the many guNaas that are innate to Brahman is discussed with illustrations from aazhvaar paasurams. These twelve guNaas demonstrate God's eternal love for us jeevaathmaas. They are sowseelyam, vaathsalyam, maardhavam, aarjavam, sowhaartham, saamyam, kaaruNyam, maadhuryam, gaambeeryam, owdhaaryam, chaathuryam, and sthairyam. The subject of this post is maardhavam. There are two interpretations for this kalyaaNa guNam. Maardhavam: (1) dislike for separation from devotees (bakttharkaLin pirivai poRukkaamai) (2) compassion even while meting out punishments (1) dislike for separation from devotees ------------------------------------------------ Sri raamaan's maardhavam is most apparent right after raavaNa vadham. His mind immediately turned to Baradhaazvhaar. Declining vibeeshNan's request to stay a little longer in Lanka, Ramaa rushed back to ayOdhyaa to reunite with his dear devotee. (Question: In what way can Bharathan be equated with madhurakavi aazhvaar? Answer: In thiruvaay mozhi 6.10.10, Nammaazhvaar says, "adiyEn un adikkeezh amarndhu pugundhEnE," "adikkezh amarndhu" (seated at the bottom of your feet) is widely interpreted to mean paadhugai. Madhurakavi in his kaNNi nuNsiRutthaambu declares that besides nammaazhvaar he knows of no other Lord, "dEvu maRRariyEn." In this sense madhurakavi, like Barathan, is a devotee of our Lord's paadhugai.) Back to maardhavam; thirumangai aazhvaar gives us a glimpse of our Lord's maardhavam in periya thiru mozhi 7.3.6: \bt ettanaip pozhudhaagilum enRum en manath agalaathirukkkum pugazh thattalartthaponnE yalar kOngin thaazh pozhil thirumaaliruncOlaiyaNG kattiyai karumbeenRa insaaRRaik kaadhalaal maRainaan_gum munnOthiya pattanai paravaitthuyilERRaiyen paNpanaiyanRip paadalseyyEnE \et ettanaip pozhudhaagilum = even for a fraction of a second enRumen manath agalaa = (you) will not separate from my mind, thirumaaliruncOlai = the Lord of thirumaaliruncOlai (that is) thaazh pozhil kongu = filled with trees that have pon Ey alar = golden flowers thattalarttha = like plates, big and wide; mun = earler in Krishnaavadhaaram Othiya = (you) learnt from rishi saantheebini maRai nanngum = the four vEdhaas; pattanai = you are omniscient; karumbeebnRa insaaRRaik = you are my sweet nectar of sugar cane; paravai thuyilERRai en paNpanai = my Lord, slumbering in paarkadal; yanRi paadal seyyEnE = I will sing only of you and not any others kaathalaal = with love. "The sweet Lord of the large and golden flowers filled thirumaaliruncOlai; the Lord who was schooled in the four vEdhaas by Saantheebini during Krishnaavadhaaram; the Lord slumbering in thirup paarkadal; is in my mind and He will not leave me even for a fraction of a second; and I will sing in His praise and not any other." Azhvaar is not claiming any credit for the fact that the Lord is firmly secured in his mind. He says, "en manatthagalaa;" which shows that the Lord has chosen to stay in aazhvaar's mind and not be separated from him. This is maardhavam. (2) compassion even while meting out punishments -------------------------------------------------------------- While Raamaa waited out the monsoon in the forest, sugreevan was enjoying the princely life style to which he was restored. The rains stopped, but sugreevan forgot all about his promise to search for seethai. Even though sugreevan deserved the wrath of LaskhmaNan, our Lord instructs iLaiya perumaaL to "gently" remind sugreevan about his promise. This gentleness is maardhavam. Another example of maardhavam is the well-known "inRu pOy naaLai vaa" to vaNNangalil arakkan, (periya thiru mozhi 9.8.5). [vaNangalil = impious, arakkan = demon, i.e. raavaNan]. Sri Raamaa's maardhavam is good even towards vaNNangalil arakkan! AndaaL appeals to this maardhavam with, "aRiyaadha piLLaigalOm anbinaal unRannaich siRu pErazhaitthanavum, seeRi aruLaathE" -- thiruppaavai (28) The "siRu pEr azhaitthana" refers to the gOkulam days, when, without the true knowledge of who Krishnan really is, gopi and gopakaas may have been irreverent to our Lord, albeit out of love. In the 28th paasuram of thiruppaavai, ANdaaL appeals to our Lord's maardhavam for forgiveness (seeRi aruLaathE = "don't be angry with us"). .... to be continued ---------- This and other posts to follow in this subject are based on the aruL mozhigaL of the 45th azhagiya singar of sri aHObila madam, sri vaN satakOpa sri naaraayaNa yatheendhra mahaa dEsikan, published in sri nrusimhap priyaa starting with bava varusham, chitthirai maasam, (April 1994), and commentaries of aazhvaar prabhandams published by The Visishtadvaita Pracharini Sabha, 27, Venkatesa Agraharam, Mylapore, Madras, 600 004.