You are here: Sri Vaishnava Home Page : Bhakti List : Archives : February 1999

Re: Periya Thirumozhi- 1.5- SaaLagraamam - a doubt.

From: Sadagopan (
Date: Tue Feb 09 1999 - 18:37:58 PST

>Your doubt on "SaaLagraamatthu adigaLai" in the last pAsuram, I 
>understood (mostly I am wrong!) as the Emperumaan of SaaLagraamam - 
>because adigaL in this context does not mean "adiyaars" i.e BhagawathAs; 
>it means: the Lord (?- How?) The reference for me is: GandhiyadigaL; We 
>do not refer to the servants of Gandhi nor do we refer to feet of 
>Gandhi.  (Perhaps, in this pAsuram, we can refer to the adigaL (Feet) of 
>SaaLagraamam Emperumaan. But the hitch is AzhwAr refers to SaaLgraamam's 
>(the Divya dEsam's) adigaL (Lord). So in all probability, the word 
>refers to Emperumaan (Lord) of SaaLagraamam. 
>Where else we can get this clarified? only from Sri Sadagopan or Sri 
>Anbil Ramaswamy? (mama, please!)
>Narayana Narayana
>Narayana dAsan Madhavakkannan 
Dear Sri MadhavakkaNNan and Sri NaarayaNan :

At the outset of this note enjoying 
the postings of Saalagraama Paasurams of
Kaliyan , let me say that Sri madhavakkaNNan's
intrepretation is correct .I will first 
summarize the mind set of Thirumangai ,
when he arrived at the divya dEsam 
of SaalagrAmam and how it led to
the phala sruthi containing the words,
"Saalagraamatthu adikaLai ".

The questions that Sri NaarayaNan raised and 
Sri MadhavakkaNNan responded to are very 
legitimate aspects of understanding/analysing
the use of Tamil words by Tamil Pulavara like
Thirumanagai .After all his other name is 
naalu kavip pulavar .Context and sandhi are 
important to intrepret the words they use .

I know there are many Tamil Scholars in this 
group like Srimans Dileepan , Rengarajan , 
Varadhan , Anbil Swamin , Viji Triplicane et al .
Since my dear friend Sri MadhavakkaNNan referred to
my name as a reference , I have no choice but to 
respond .Rest of the members more knowledgable 
than myself are invited to comment and enrich 
the discussions.

Thirumangai is  a great rasikar of Sri RaamAvathAram .
When he reaches SaalagRAAMAm , he is immediately 
struck by the word RAAMA ( the Taaraka , pOshaka 
naamam ) housed inside the name of the Divya Desam . 
He rememberd the sahasra naama phala sruthi slOkam :

Sri Raama RaamEthi RamE raamE manOramE 
Sahasra naama tatthulyam Raama Naama varananE
Sri Raama Naama VarAnana Om Nama Ithi 

Lord SivA was responding there to the query
of His dear Consort , Paarvathi , who had
asked : What is the laghu upAyam(laghu aarAdhanam)
to salute (meditate ) on the glories of the thousand 
names of VishNu .Her husband revealed the secret 
and gave Her the UpadEsam : The One word (naamam ),
" Raama " is equivalent in mahimai compared to all 
the thousand names of Sri VishNu sahasra naamam .

Reminded by the Raama naama mudrai inside
the name of the divya dEsam of SaaLag-RAAMA-m ,
Thirmangai took the counsel of the Lord ,
who resides in the HimAlayan snow ( KailAsam ) 
and focussed on the celebration of Sri Raamachandran
in the very first paasuram and identified 
the divya dEsam as the one that houses (grAmam)
the Lord , who constructed sEthu and travelled over it
to Lankhai to cut off the ten heads of the Mahaa-
aparAdhi RaavaNan in the battle field :

" malai koNdu alai neer anaik katti mathiL neerilankai vALarakkar
talaivan talai patthu aRutthu uhandAn SaalagRAAMam adai nenjE "

In the second paasuram , AzhwAr continued 
with the celebration of the valour of the Raghu Veeran:

" Ilankai podiyA vadivAi saram thuranthAn "
(the one who transformed the great city of 
Lankai into dust with the power of His arrows ).

In the third Saalagraama paasuram, AzhwAr pointed out 
that the Jagath-kAraNa vasthu is offering sEvai for us 
in the form of Sri RaamA  (arakkarkku yej~AnRum salavan ) 

In the fourth Paasuram , Raama Naama dhyAnam continues :
" tErA arakkar thEr veLLam seRRAn ".In the fifth paasuram,
azhwAr's  mind shifts to the incident with SoorpaNakA ,
another RaamAvathArA incident .Thereafter, he shifts to 
Sriman NaarAyaNA's other incarnations such as 
KrishNan , Narasimhan and the BhakthAs , who 
crowd SaalagrAmam to have the blessings of 
Sri Raaman , who with the power of His KodhaNdam
sent an arrow to pierce the seven Saal trees 
to convince the doubting SugrIvan about His
strength to handle Vali in battle .The divya
desam of " Saala + gRAAMAm " was once full of tall Saal 
trees (dense wood trees like teak )associated with 
the incident in the avathAram of the Raghu Veeran .

He now arrives at the Tenth (phala sruthi) paasuram
containing the word " SaalagRAAMAtthu adikaLai" .
He told us that his paasurams ( Tamil Maalai) 
coming out of his vaak are about saluting "SaalagrAmatthu 
adikaLai " paRRiyathu . He said " SaalagrAmatthu adikaLai oli 
seytha Tamizh maalai ivai " ( these paasurams arising out of 
his mouth are about the Sarva Swami presiding over 
the divya desam of Saala gRAAMAm , Sri RAAMAchandran ,
the recitation of whose name is equivalent to 
the recitation of the thousand names of Sriman 
VishNu-NaarAyaNan . So he suggested to the 
VirakthAs ( ulhatthu aarAr )and VivEkis( aRivu
udayAr) , who want to have the boon of residence
in Sri Vaikuntam recite his SaalagRAAMA Paasurams 
celebrating Mainly RaamAvathaaran . 

The recommendation of his Phala sruthi is " nall naadu 
arasu aaLa ,pEr aayiram OdhuminkaL " ( O wise and vairAgyasAlis !
If you want to live in our Lord's Sri Vaikuntam , please 
recite these paasurams about our Sarava Swami with 
thousand names at SaalagrAmam . They are equivalent to reciting
the thousand names of the Lord of Sri Vaikuntam ) . 
If you can not do that , atleast recite these ten paasurams 
of mine about the archA mUrthy of SaalagrAmam in any haphazard 
manner ( ivayE pithaRRuminE) not worrying about
Krama paatam .

Thus , "SaaLagrAmatthu adikaLai " means about 
the Jagath-kAraNa , Jagan Mangala mUrthi ,
the Sarva Swami residing at Saalagraamam
as Sri Raamachandran .

The other intrepretation that comes to my mind 
is the Ponnadi of the Lord . When one has sEvai of 
the Lord in ArchA , the eyes have to move 
PaddAdhi KesAntham ( From the sacred feet of the Lord to
the Face having the glorious dark tresses of kEsam .
Thirumnagai followed that Krama sEvai and focussed 
on the sacred feet of the Lord .

Yet another intrepretation is the visualization 
of what is under and on the KaDaki river bed 
( Nadhiyin adiyil uLLavai ).Those resting  there are 
the SaalagRAAMA mUrthams . Surrounded by 
RaamA mUrthams and KrishNa mUrthams
and Nrusimha mUrthams , AzhwAr thinks 
of Saalagraamatthu adikal as the Lotus 
feet of Sriman NaarAyaNan .

NaarAyaNa , NaarAyaNa , NaarAyaNa 
Oppiliappan Koil VaradAchAri SadagOpan 

P.S : Divya prabhandham is indeed an anubhava
grantham !