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karunyam

From: Parthasarati Dileepan (MFPD_at_UTCVM.UTC.EDU)
Date: Fri Feb 24 1995 - 20:14:51 PST

kaaruNyam
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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
kaaruNyam.

kaaruNyam: (i) eagerness to eliminate other's grief
           without expecting anything in return
           (vERu oru payan karudhaamal
           piRarudaiya dhukkatthaip pOkka
           virumbudhal); (ii) not tolerating other's
           grief (piRar padum dhukkathai
           poRukkaamai); (iii) feeling grieved at
           other's grief (piRarkaLudaiya
           dhukkatthaik kaNdu thaanum
           dhukkitthal.)

The result of the above three dimensions of kaaruNyam
is the swiftness of our Lord's remedy for the anguish felt
by his devotees.  This is beautifully illustrated by
thirumangai aazhvaar in the following paasuram.


meenamar poygai naaNmalar koyvaan
 vEtkaiyinOdusen Rizhindha,
kaanamar vEzham kaiyeduth thalaRak
 karaavadhan kaalinaik kadhuva,
aanaiyin thuyaram theerap puLLoorndhu
 senRun^in Raazhithot taanai,
thEnamar sOlai maadamaa mayilaith
 thiruvallik kENikkaN dEnE.

           --  periya thirumozhi (2.3.9)


vEzham     = elephant
karaa      = crocodile
kadhuva    = bite
puL        = bird (garudaazhvaar)


This paasuram describes the well known story of
GajEndhraazhvaan crying out "aathimoolamE" when a
crocodile bites his foot.  The interesting part of this
paasuram is  the phrase "senRu ninRu aazhi thottaanai"
in the sixth line above.  It seems our Lord had to wait
(ninRu) for the disc (aazhi) to catch up, after reaching
the pond.   With intense desire to eliminate GajEndhran's
distress, our Lord hurried at lightening speed.  But,
Chakaratthaazhvaan was unable to keep up with the
Lord.  Consequently, upon reaching the pond, the Lord
of thiruvallikkENi had to pause ("ninRu") for the
chakkaram to catch up (ninRu aazhi thottaan") with him.
Such intensity for instantaneously relieving our distress
without expecting anything in return springs from
kaaruNyam.

p.s.
It seems there are some disagreements with the third
interpretation for kaaruNyam numbered (iii).

         .... 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.