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Reflections on Sri HemAbjhavalli SamEtha Sri DevanAtha PerumAL of Thiruvaheendhrapuram following Swamy Desikan's dvine footsteps: Part II-> MummaNikkOvai

From: Sadagopan (
Date: Mon Jan 17 2000 - 19:07:05 PST

Dear BhakthAs : 

At the outset , let me invite your attention to
the excellent home pages created by Sri Mani VaradarAjan
for ThiruvahIndhrapuram in the SrivishNava portal.
I encourage you to visit these lovely pages for the darsanam
of the dhivya dampathis of this KshEthram along with 
the archA of Swamy Desikan ( sculpted by himself ) and
Lord Yoga HayagrIvan , His AarAdhana Moorthy presented 
by Garuda BhagavAn Himself. 

MummaNikkOvai: An Introduction

This composition is one of the nine Sri Sookthis 
of Swamy Desikan on the Lord of ThiruvahIndhrapuram:
MummaNikkOvai, Nava maNi Maalai , Panthu, Kazhal ,
Oosal, yEsal , ammAnai , Sri DevanAyaka PanchAsath
and Sri Achyutha Sathakam . The last two are in Sanskrit 
and Praakrutham respectively .

The MummaNikkOvai means that this Prabhandham is
a rathna Haaram (gem necklace) made of three kinds
of gems : ahaval , VeNNpaa and KattalaikkalitthuRai.
Latter are three types of metres in Tamil poetry .

Content and structure of MummaNikkOvai
In this beautiful Prabhandham ,Swamy starts with
the subject of the importance of Purushakara Prapatthi
to Sri Devi and reminds us of the six meanings of
the "Sri" Sabdham . He follows it up with a salutation
to the limitless auspicious attributes of Lord 
DevanAthan and points out that He is the AadhAram (Seshi) 
for all chEthanams as well as achEthanams.He recognizes
the Lord of ThiruvahIndhrapuram as "sarva vidha Bhandhu". 
He points out that those , who seek refuge in Him are 
abundantly blessed to have the Saayujya MOksham. 
The ten paasurams that we have to day have been 
structured as examples of Sri Venkata Naayaki 
( Sri VedAntha Desikan assuming the feminine form
just as NammAzhwAr and Thirumangai AzhwAr did)
talking to the Lord and the dialog of the friend
and foster Mother of Venakata Naayaki with 
Her Lord. 

Individual Verses in Chaste Tamil

Swamy Desikan rigorously follows the grammar 
of Tamil poetry in the construction of these
verses . Inview of possible  difficulty to read 
the  actual transliterated version , I will
organize the words and passages in a form that
would be easier to read . 

First Verse celebrating the PurushakaraPrapatthi

arul tarum adiyAr paal meyaai vaitthu
teruL tara ninRa DhaivanAyaka ninn
aruL yenum sIr ohr arivaiy Aanathu yena
iruL seha yemakku ohr innoLi viLakkAi
maNivarai anna ninn thiru uruvil 
aNi amar aahatthu alangalAi ilangi
ninn patikellAm tann pati yERkka
anbhuDan unnOdu avatharitthu aruLi
vENDurai kEttu meeNDavai kEtpitthu
eEeNDiya vinaikaL maaNDida muaynRu
tannadi sErntha tamar unai aNuha 
ninnudan sErnthu niRkum ninn ThiruvE

Each of the words and the lines of this 
Paasuram are the distillation of the essence 
of the glories of Sri DEvi and Her unique
role in Prapatthi that we perform to Her Lord.
She is indispensable in that Prapatthi .
We approach Her through Purushakara Prapatthi
and appeal to Her to intercede on our behalf 
with Her Lord and reduce His anger at us for 
all of our trespasses.

She helps us in six ways as indicated by
the analysis of the "SrI " Sabdham :

(1) SreeyathE: She is reached by all chEthanams
that seek salvation (Moksham).

(2) SrayathE: She reaches Her Lord on our behalf.

(3)SruNOthi: She hears all of our prayers for
intercession .

(4) SrAvayathi: She makes Her Lord hear the appeals 
from the suffering chEthanams.

(5) SruNAthi: She removes all the obstacles that
stand in the way of performing Prapatthi.

(6)SrINAthi: She perfects our status and qualifies
us to perform Kaimkaryam for Her Lord .

Swamy Deikan decides to perform his Prapatthi 
to Dhaiva Naayakan and approaches His consort,
HemAbhjavalli ThAyAr first in the manner 
prescribed by SaasthrAs .

Here Swamy Desikan reminds Sri Dhaiva Naayakan 
of an ancient doctrine : He says :" Oh Lord , who is 
true to Your promise of showering Your grace on Your
adiyArs ( Kimkara Sathyan , Natha Sathyan )! Oh Lord
who blesses us with the eye of true wisdom to see
Your tatthvams properly ! On Your broad blue chest ,
all of Your jewelery are  seen gaining their hue 
and glory ;on that auspicious chest , Your divine 
consort , who never leaves You for even a fraction
of a second , is seen shining as a beautiful garland .
Whenever and wherever You incarnate , She is there
without fail in  a form that is appropriate to that
incarnation of Yours. She stands as a precious gem-
studded lamp and removes our false knowledge. She
listens to the prayers of Your adiyArs and appeals
to You and removes the karmAs of these adiyArs. She 
makes sure that those who sought refuge at Her lotus 
feet reach Your sacred feet and stands like 
the embodiment of Your Daya GuNam.Thus Your 
divine consort ,who is inseperable from You 
and who enhances Your glories will be pleased with 
our Prapatthi and will bless us in every way ".

" Thiruvukkum ThiruvAhiya Selvan " is  addressed 
here and is reminded of the eminence of His Thiru
( Periya PirAtti and Her uniqueness).The key passage
of this paasuram is: " Tannadi sErntha tamar unai 
aNuha , ninnudan sErnthu niRku ninn ThruvE".

Swamy Desikan approaches the mithunam ( the couple)
who are inseperable and reminds them that his kaimkaryam
will become fruitful only in presence of Sri Devi.
She enhances the performed kaimkaryam many fold ;hence
She is the one to be reached first and the performance of 
Kiamkaryam in Her state of union with Her Lord 
is the only one , which is appropriate to
the nature (svarUpam ) of the Jeevan. That is
why , NammAzhwAr tightly questions the Lord:
" ThirumAlE ninRE aatccheyya Nee ninaipathu 
thaann yenRE ?" ThiruvAimozhi: 8.3.8 as pointed 
out by Srimath Azhagiya singar in one of his recent
article on PurushakAra Prapatthi.The essence of 
Sristhavam and ChathusslOki are summarized for 
us by Swamy Desikan in this first verse of 

Swamy Desikan ThiruvadigaLE SaraNam ,
Daasan, OppilA-appan Koil V.Sadagopan