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H.H. The Ahobila Matam Jeeyar's third UpanyAsam : Part III

From: Sadagopan (
Date: Thu Feb 18 1999 - 06:38:36 PST

ear BhakthAs :

In this concluding posting on Hitham ( SaraNAgathi),
I will cover the rest of the content of  the divya 
UpadEsam by the revered Jeeyar . He was speaking to us
from Srirangam . Hence Sri RanganAthA was very much on his mind 
and he quoted the famous NyAsa Tilaka SlOkam of Swami Desikan ,
where he asks his mind to banish all worries because of 
Sri Ranganathan accepting the SaraNAgathi performed by 
the SadAchAryan ." DhatthE Rangi" were the key words .
He pointed out that the Lord looks for AchAryA's "order" 
to approve SaraNAgathi of a Prapannan . 

In this context , H.H. The Jeeyar quoted a slOkam from
Saakunthalam of the MahA Kavi, KaaLI Daasan , where Dushyanthan
as the just king  consoles an orphaned girl . The merciful
king says : I will stand in the position of your father 
and protect you; I will stand in the sthAnam of your mother
and stand by you . When he moves on to another role model ,
(viz)., husband , there is a delicacy . He senses it and 
delicately side steps any misunderstanding , when he says 
that he will stand in the position of her( orphaned girl )
husband and protect her from harm' way . King DushyanthA 
states that he will stand in the sthAnam of her BharthA
and remove her worries .DushyanthA was not her husband and
hence there is delicacy in him offering to stand in the role 
of her husband . He implies that he will stand in a sinless
way in the role of her husband . H.H. The Jeeyar pointed out
here that Our Lord the SaraNyan is not a karma bhandhu to
the suffering Jeevan , but a NirupAdhika Bhandhu .
Unlike karma ( sObhAdhika ) bhandhuthvam (relationship) ,
NiruphAdhika Bhandhuthvam has no conditions or limitations
or delicacies caused by time or environment or sarIram .

Blessed by sEshathva Jn~Anam , we comprehend our 
inalienable bonds (relationship ) of ours as sEsha bhUthAs 
to the SARVA SESHI . Thus He is our NiruphAdhika husband 
as well . He is NiyanthA and we are niyAmyans . Our relationship
as pathnIs to the Lord is only natural . Unlike Dushyanthan's
well meant statement that he will stand in the role of
the husband , there is no delicacy associated with the 
Lord's role as our BirthA (Husband ). He is indeed our 
protector , Sarva Swami .   

KaaLi DaasA's poem of consolation to the sorrowing girl 
has the following key words in the body of the slOkam :
yEna yEna , ahamEva , sudhushkarENa  , sOkathyA , thyajyantha.
Swami Desikan's imagination took off from this slOkam of MahA Kavi
and  reorganized (elevated ) it to describe the role of the 
Lord as Sarva Rakshakan . He pointed out that the thoughts
housed in that slOkam paraphrasing KaaLi Daasaa's kingly
statement is the essence of Charama SlOkam of the Emperor
of all Universes , Sri ParthasArathy and is the answer 
to recover all of our nashta (lost )Isvaryam ( wealth /
svarUpa Jn~Anam as sesha bhUthans of the Sarva sEshi ).
Since this slokam is the essence of SaraNAgathi , Swami
Desikan gave it prominence in the Charama SlOkaadhikAram 
chapter of his Rahasya thrya Saaram and Taatparya Chandhrikai .
The famous slOkam is a sfollows :

sudhushkarENa sOchEth yO yEna yEna ishta hEthunA
sa sa TasyaahamEvEthi charam SlOka sangraha: 

Swami Desikan's imagination created this slOkam
a la KaaLi Daasan , but his PramANams came from
Ahirbhudnya Samhithai (ABS :37-25,26,27 )passages 
dealing with the magnificence of the fruits of 
SaraNAgathi (Moksham ) , which can not be attained
easily by Bhakthi or Jn~Ana or Karma Yogaa routes . 
Our Lord stands in the place of all of these paths
and grants us Moksham through the practise of 
easy-to-perform Prapatthi Yogam through an Acharyan .

Two of the ABS Samhithai slOkams housing these assurances 
of the superiortiy of Prapatthi Yogam provide the basis of 
Swami Desikan"s " SudhushkarENa --" slokam are :

yadhyEna kaama kaamEna na saadhyam sadhanAntharai :
MumukshuNA yath saankhyEna yOgEna na cha Bhakthitha:

prApyathE paramam dhAma yathO naavarthathE Yathi:
thEna thENApyathE tatth tAtthath nyAsEnaiva mahaamunE
ParamAthmA cha thEnaiva SaadhyathE PurushOtthama :

(meaning ) : Oh Great Sage ! Prapatthi yields for 
a Mumkshu ( the one who longs for Moksham )the phalans
that are not attainable by the practise of Bhakthi , Karma 
and Jn~Ana Yogams . That Phalans yielded unquestionably 
by Prapatthi are freedom from the cycles of birth and 
residence in ParamAthmA's Sri Vaikuntam from where one
never returns to the karma BhUmi again .

"ThEna ThEna" stands for the Karma , Bhakthi and Jn~Ana 
Yogams . These are SaadhanAntharams (alternate routes) .
They do not lead 
us to the supreme effulgence in Sri Vaikuntam ( Paramam
DhAmam ). That phalan is attained only by NyAsam 
( NyAsainEva praapyathE ). 

Swami Desikan took the cue from ThEna ThEna in the samhithai
passage , heard the echoes of KaaLi Daasan's slOkam
Passage , "yEna yEna " and constructed the Charama
slOka sangraham :

SudhushkarENa sOchEth yO yEna yEna ishta hEthunA
sa sa TASY AHAM YeVA ITHI Charama slOka sangraha:

It is useful to understand the word by word meaning
of this important anushtup slOkam of Swami Desikan that 
H.H.The Jeeyar quoted as a pramANam :

Ya: = the One 
sudhushkarENa = by the act that is difficult to execute
yEna yEna= this , that and other means 
ishta hEthunA = inability to perform those upAyams ( Bhakthi
                Yogam et al )
sOchEth = and grieves over that incapacity 
tasya = for him (maa sucha: )
sa: sa: = in place of those upAyams 
aham yEva= I myself stand and fulfil them
           through the simple and easy to perform 
           act of prapatthi to Me (aham thvA mOkshayishyAmi).
Charama slOka sangraha: = This is the quintessence of
                          BhagavAn's Charama slOkam  
                          (MaamEkam SaraNam vraja).

( meaning ): The essence of CharamaslOkam is that 
the Lord stands in place of the difficult to practise Bhakthi ,
Karma and Jn~Ana Yogams and grants the disspirited mumkshu
Moksham through the simple act of Prapatthi .

In the above anshtup metre slOkma of 32 aksharams ,
the first three quarters(paadhams) contain the essence of
Charama slOkam . The fourth paadham is the heading .

H.H. The Jeeyar quoted the SaraNAgathi gadhyam passages 
of AchArya RaamAnujA's prayer to perform nithya kaimkaryam
to Sri RanganAthA inspite of his incapacity to perform 
upayAntharams and appealing to the Lord to stand in 
the place of those upayAntharams like Bhakthi and karma 
yOgams and accept his prapatthi . He also referred to 
GajEndhran's and Droupathi's prapatthis in their utter state
of helplessness. "yEna yEna " stands for these alternative ,
difficult-to-practise means ( upaayAntharams ).

Next , H.H.The Jeeyar quoted another slOkam of 
KaaLi dAsA from Raghu Vamsa KhAvyam . At the beginning
of this mahA khAvyam , KaaLi dAsA compars his inabilities 
to undertake  this monumental task of creating a khAvyam
about the illustrious descendants of the Raghu lineage .
The poet compares himself to  a dwarf , who jumps vainly 
to reach the fruit on top of a tall branch of a tree .
He says people will laugh at his brave act (saahasam ).
The sudhushkaram act evoked by KaaLi dAsA in Raghu Vamsam 
forms the basis of Swami Desikan's inspiration about
the futile efforts of the dwarf trying to santch the ripe
fruit on the top of a tall tree . H.H. The Jeeyar illustrated
the importance of AchArya Nishtai ( one of the methods of 
Prapatthi ) to overcome our limitations of being dwarfs
( asakthAs , who do not have the power to practise 
successfully the Bhakthi and other yOgams ) and yet 
longing for the fruit of Moksham . He compared the AchAryAs 
to a tall man , who can reach out and pick the fruit for
us effortlessly . 

Swami Desikan in his 21st slOkam of NyAsa Tilakm compares
us with deficencies in practise of the other yOgams
to the blind one , who needs to be held by hand byto
one , who can see to reach his destination .He compares 
us to the lame , who can not swim across ariver , but hs to
be transported by a boat man across the river and equates
the AchAryAs to those DayALus (most merciful ones )and
their help as AchArya Nishtai methosd of prapatthi .
Swami Desikan's exact words are : 

tvath samprApthou prabhavathi tathA DesikO mE DhayALu :         
( in the matter of reaching You, my Lord , the most 
merciful AchAryAs are the most capable to help ).

H.H. The Jeeyar pointed out that donations of 
millions of rupees as DhAnam for noble causes
would not lead us to Moksham . He instructed us that 
dhAnams given without the performance of SaraNAgathi
will not lead us to Moksham . The first thing we have to do
is to return to the Lord His vasthu ( aathma ) and 
cease thinking that it is ours . AathmApahAram has 
to be recognized as the most heinous sin that stands 
in our way to gain Moksham .H.H. The Jeeyar quoted the 
48th SlOkam of Sri Deva Naayaka PanchAsath , where at 
the end , Swami Desikan presents his aathmA to 
the rightful owner and performs SaraNAgathi :

aathmApahAra rasikEna mayaiva dhattham
  anyai: adhAryam adhunA VibhudhaikanAtha 
sveekruthya dhArayithum arhasi maam tvadheeyam 
  ChOra upaneetha nija nUpUravath svapaadhE 

This is  one of the most beautiful slOkams with
layers of meaning and is about aathma samarpaNam 
begging the Lord to take back His own property .
Swami compares the viparitha jn~Anam that makes one
think that he is the owner of the AathmA .
He compares it to the act of a thief ,
who steals the jewelery of the Lord and considers it as
his own property . When the thief gets true Jn~Anam 
thru AchArya and understands his inability to protect
himself against the wrath of the Lord , he returns 
the jewelery to the Lord and seeks His pardon 
and is rightfully rewarded . H.H. The Jeeyar 
quoted the first section of Parasara Bhattar's
Thirumanjana Kattiyam, where the deluded Jeevan
argues with the Lord about the ownership of AathmA
( thvam mE, ham mE , Kuthas Tath--) and concedes
finally that the Lord is the owner .This Kattiyam
has been covered in an earlier posting on 
Parasara Bhattar .

This third UpanyAsam concluded with the recital 
of the famous First NyAsa Dasaka SlOkam and 
an appeal for us to reflect on its meaning 
and perform SaraNAgathi as the parama Hitham :

aham madhrakshaNabharO madhrakshaNa pahalam tathA 
na mama SripathErEvathyAthmAnam nikshipEth Budha: 

The meanings of this and other nine slOkams of 
NyAsa dasakam and its companion piece ,Adaikkalap-
patthu in Tamil has been covered in earlier saraNAgathi 
Journal postings .The NyAsa dasakam is the most important 
grantham for us to understand the importance 
and grandeur of SaraNAgathi and the way to 
perform it .

Azhagiya Singhar ThiruvadigaLE SaraNam 
Daasan , Oppiliappan Koil VaradAchAri SadagOpan