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SrI vishNu sahasranAma stotram - Slokam 59 - Part 2.

From: Narasimhan Krishnamachari (
Date: Sat Jan 08 2000 - 06:54:04 PST

SrI vishNu sahasranAmam - Slokam 59 -Part 2.

555. dRDhah - a) He Who assumes firm, concrete vyUha
forms for the benefit of His devotees.
		b) He Who is firm and determined in His thoughts,
words and deeds.
		c) He Who is firmly established and cannot be
negated as the Supreme Deity  by counter-arguments.
		d) He Who is huge and strong.

om dRDhAya namah.

dRDha literally means solid, firm, strong, massive,
etc.  The root word from which the nAma dRDhah is
formed is dRh - vRddhau - to be fixed or firm, to
grow.  SrI v.n. vedAnta deSikan gives the
interpretation in English as:  Para vAsudeva takes the
vyUha forms which are firm and concrete and are not
merely of a nebulous, imaginative level.  In other
words, the term dRDhah here refers to forms that can
be more easily comprehended and meditated upon.  SrI
v.v. rAmAnujan gives reference to the nRsimha
incarnation - tiNNiyadOr ari uru, where ari means

b) SrI rAdhAkRshNa SAstri interprets the nAma as
referring to bhagavAn being firm in His actions - one
meaning for acyutah which we will encounter later in
this write-up.  SrI cinmayAnanda observes that even
though bhagavAn is firm in His Infinite Justice, this
Justice becomes a-dRDhah when a great sinner
surrenders to Him, and bhagavAn immediately reaches
out to help the sinner.  

c) SrI PBA gives the interpretation that bhagavAn s
dRDhah because He if firmly established as the Supreme
Deity by vedic pramANa-s, and no amount of false
arguments by the "bAhya ku-dRshTi-s" can negate that.

d) dRDhah also means huge, mighty, strong, etc. -
dRDhau sthUlo balavAn vA.   Since bhagavAn assumes
huge and strong forms when He takes His incarnations
to destroy His enemies, this nAma can be interpreted
as a reference to this guNa of His.  SrI satyadevo
vAsishTha gives the explanation dRDahu sthUlo balavAn
vA.   He also gives another view - everything that
bhagavAn creates reflects His guNa of firmness.  The
Oceans have always been firm in keeping the massive
amount of water in their bounds without exception, and
the skeleton that holds the body together is firm from
birth to death and never collapses from its shape, and
the earth holds all its subjects and contents firmly. 
BhagavAn who is giving all of these their firmness, is
thus also called dRDhah.

556. sankarshaNah - He Who draws others near Him.

om sankarshaNAya namah.

SrI BhaTTar's vyAkhyAnam is "samsAre cit-acitoh Atmani
samam karshaNAt samam karsham nayati" - In this world,
He draws towards Himself both the cit and acit in the
same way and unites them - His power of attraction is
uniform, and so He is called samkarshaNa.  SrI Sankara
specifically refers to this attraction as referring to
the time of cosmic dissolution, when bhagavAn draws
everything towards Himself.

SrI kRshNadatta bhAradvAj gives the interpretation -
samyak karshati iti sankarshaNah; SrI bhagavAn
svajanAn AtmAnam prati svakIyaih vAtsalya mAdhuryAdi
guNaih karshati - He who draws His devotees towards
Him through His infinite guNa-s such as vAtsalyam, His
exquisite beauty, etc. 

SrI Sankara combines this nAma with the next one,
acyutah, and interprets sankarshNocyutah as one nAma,
meaning that bhagavAn draws everything at the time of
dissolution towards Himself (samkarshNah),  while
Himself not slipping from His Real Nature (acyutah).  

SrI rAdhAkRshNa Sastri gives yet another anubhavam for
the sequence dRDhah, sankarshNah, and acyutah:  dRDhah
- He is one who is firm in His Nature, sankarshNah -
He who draws those who are caught in the ocean of
samsAra towards Him with firm determination and Mercy,
and acyutah - He Who is firm and does not slip while
drawing the entire group of these cetana-s towards
Him.  The dharma cakram writer gives a simple analogy
to illustrate the above.  To drag someone who has
fallen into a forceful river to safety, the savior
should be strong enough not to be drawn by the river
himself, but also should have the strength to drag the
other individual against the force of the river. 
BhagavAn is the acyutah who has the firmness, resolve,
and the power to save the samsAri-s from the ocean
current of samsAra.

557.  acyutah - a) One who never slips from His glory.
                                   b)  One who never
lets His devotees slip.
                                   c)  One who
undergoes no modifications such as birth, growth,
                   disease, etc.

om acyutAya namah.

We came across this nAma twice before (nAma-s 101 and
320).  The contents of the previous explanations have
been included in the following summary.  

a)    cyuti means "fall" and cyuta means "fallen".  
acyuta means "One
who has never fallen from His true nature".  
Different anubhava-s are
given to further expand this guNa of the Lord.   Sri
Bhattar points out
that He does not ever fall from His position of
overlordship  unlike
Brahma, Indra, etc. who are subject to loss of
position, and therefore
He is called acyuta.   In support of the
interpretation that bhagavAn does 
not undergo transformations like others, SrI BhaTTar
quotes the following:

	cyavanotpattiukteshu brahmendra varuNAdishu     |
	yasmAn na cyavase sthAnAt tasmat samkIrtyase acyutah 

The source of this reference has not been provided in
Prof. SrInivAsa rAghavan's text.  The meaning is: 
"Whereas brahma, varuNa, and others are subject to
birth and death and fall down from their position,
Thou dost not fall down like that.  So Thou art called

Sri rAdhAkrshNa SAstri points out that He also does
not slip from His position by being influenced by kAma
etc. unlike Brahma, Indra etc.

In mahAbhArata we have "yasmAt na cyuta pUrvo'ham
acyutastena karmaNA" - SAnti parva
12.330.16.   Sri Sankara interprets the above as
meaning "svarUpasAmarthyAt na cyuto na
cyavate na cyavishyata iti acyutah" - He has not
lapsed, is not lapsing, and will not lapse from His
own glory; hence the name acyuta.

The dharma cakram writer points to the passage in
muNDakopanishad which 
describes the two birds sitting in different branches
of the tree, one tasting the 
fruit and the other just watching the bird that is
tasting the fruit (of karma).   
This has been described in a previous write-up. 
BhagavAn is the acyuta, from 
His superior position, watching the jIvAtmA which is
tasting the fruits of karma 
in this case.

b)  Sri Bhattar also gives the alternate vyAkhyAna: "I
have never abandoned (my
bhaktas).  Because of this act of mine, I am known as
acyuta".  His
words are  "tebyah prapannebhyah na apagatah acyutah -
He is never away
from those who have sought refuge in Him".  Sri
nrsimharAghavAchAryar in his bhagavadgItA bhAshya has
given the
explanation na cyAvayati iti acyutah - One who does
not let His devotees
slip.  arjuna calls Lord kRshNa as acyuta since He has
taken it
upon Himself to be his charioteer  and will ensure
that arjuna will not slip.

SrI v.v. rAmAnujan adds the following reference from
rAmAyaNa  in support of 
the interpretation "He who does not let His devotee
slip" - na cyAvayati -
"mitra-bhAvena samprAptam na tyajeyam kathancana dosho
yadyapi tasya
syAt " - "No matter what flaws a person has, if he has
come to Me seeking My
friendship, there is no way that I will abandon him
under any circumstance".  
SrI rAmAnujan also gives the reference to divya
prabandham - "kArtigaiyAnum 
kari-mugattAnum kanalum mukkaN-mUrtiyum mODiyum
veppum mudugiTTu" - the reference here is to the story
of bANAsura who was
abandoned by the other devatA-s when he approached
them for protection.  Not
so with bhagavAn - na me bhaktah praNaSyati - "My
devotee will never perish" - gItA.

c) cyutam means modification.  The upanishad says of
BhagavAn -
"SASvatam Sivam acyutam" - Eternal, Auspicious, and
Changeless" - taittirIya 
AraNyakam - 10.11).   Sri rAdhAkrshNa SAstri points
out that BhagavAn is acyuta 
because He does not slip from stage to stage in the
sequence of events such as birth, 
living, growth, change in appearance, decay, and
finally disappearance from the body.

-To be continued

-dAsan kRshNamAcAryan


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