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PaadhukhA Sahasra Slokam :935 ( AchArya Mahimai ): Part 2

From: Sadagopan (
Date: Wed Jan 20 1999 - 19:07:20 PST

Dear BhakthAs : 

This slokam from Chithra Paddhathi is another
tribute to the versatality and genius of Swami
Desikan .The slOkam is as follows :

tathAtatthA thithatthEtataathA 
thatthathatthaa tathithathaa 
thathEthaathEtha thaathuthaa 

The split and stops of this slOkam , which 
makes it sound like jathisvaram of a classical
Bharatha Naatyam piece are :

thathaathatthA athitatthEthaa thaathathi 
ithEthithaathithuthatth I
thatthathatthathatthAtha thithathathathaa
thathA ithAthEthathaathuthaa II

When one hears this slOkam recited by
MukkUr Swami , one gets RomAnjali .

This slOkam is set in what is known as
Ekahalka Bhandham .This verse contains one 
"hul" sound . Hence , it is classified as 
Ekahulka Bhandham .The name of Ekahulkam
derives from the Sanskrit grammar elaborated by
PaNIni's system . " Hal" is a technical expression 
for all consonants in general or for a single 
consonant . This slOkam contains only one 
consonant ( Tha ) and therefore is understood as
Ekahalkam .  

The general meaning of the slOkam :

The PaadhukhAs of the Lord are known for their 
long strides and are known for their readiness
to travel at any time , any where. Since these holy 
paadhukhAs are most enjoyable and attainable , they 
exceed even the status of Brahmam denoted generally as 
"Thath " . These padhukhAs through their power destroy
the afflictions of the samsAris . They are expansive 
as a result of the rows of objects and people under
its  suzeranity. They are surrounded by many musical
instruments such as VeeNA , Mrudhangam et al, which
praise their glories .They are the property of the father 
of manmathA and act as a Father would to his children .

The more elaborate meaning of this slOkam : 

Why do the PaadhukhAs ( SadhaachAryAs ) plead 
for us ,the MahA Paapis , who are spurned by 
the Lord and the world ? Why do they acquire for us
the DayA of the Lord and then give us good counsel ,
protect us through the upadEsam to seek refuge at 
the Lord's sacred feet ? That is a dirct result of 
the limitless DayA of the PaadhukhAs( SadhAchAryAs ).
That dayA blossoms in to Vaathsalyam for us , the undeserving
ones .What does that Vaathsalyam do ? The PaadhukhAs act 
like a Cow in search of its young calf and search for 
the JeevarAsis to protect them and roam all over 
in such an effort (vyApAram ).The PaadhukhAs
demonstrate that they are parama prApyam because of 
the Jeevan's clear comprehension about their true
nature : Interceder (purushakAram ) with BhagavAn 
for our upliftment( ujjIvanam ). In this regard , 
the PaadhukhAs ( sdahAchAryAs ) recognize that they are 
more powerful in attracting and holding the Jeevans
than the Lord Himself -who gave up-and at the same time 
more enjoyable than the paramAthmA Himself .The pair of
PaadhukhAs of Sri RanganAthA act like Him as 
described by the following Srimadh RaamAyaNa slOkam :

vyasanEshu manushyANAm bhrusam bhavathi dukkhitha:
uthsavEshu cha sarvEshu pithEva parithushyathi 

The PaadhukhAs like their Lord becomes sorrowful , when 
those who seek refuge experience sorrows and are joyous,
when the SaraNAgathAs experience Joy ; in this regard ,
they demonstrate Vaathsalyam like parents for their
dear children .This is one of the rarest kind of
Vathsalyam ! 

SadhAchAryAs ( PaadhukhAs ) out of their Vaathsalyam
seek out the suffering samsAris and protect them through 
their timely intervention .They reveal to these samsAris 
their rare (adhisayitha ) prApyathvam and bhOgyathvam
( enjoyability ) through the example they set by their
Saasthra-sampradhAya anushtAnams .They do all the hithams 
through their care and involvement .The SadhAchAryAs stay 
as Sarva vitha Bhandhus and help us acquire sakala purushArthams .
Through their madhura bhAshaNam and Brahma tEjas , they attract
us.They do not need anything in return for their upakArams
to us. They act like the caring parents in empathizing 
with us and responding to our needs with alacrity .

PaadhukhA Devi like Sri Devi, BhUmi Devi , NeeLA Devi 
and DayA Devi intercedes on our behalf with 
the Dhandha dharan , the Lord , who gets angry at 
us for trespassing His saasthrAs . PaadhukhA Devi like 
the other four Devis follows the dictum :
"apichEth sudhurAchAra:  ,Kshipram Bhavathi DharmAthmA".
Through Her intercession and pleading , the PaadhukhA Devi
wins the case on our behalf with the erstwhile angry Lord
and removes our sins , acquires for us the Lord's anugahams
and makes us quickly ( Kshipram ) the righteous ones
( DahrmAthmAs). With alpa vyAjam , She intervenes and 
recommends and makes us parama sukruths and parama
BhAgyasAlis .

The multiple meanings based on variations of one consonoant
In this Ekahalka Bhandha slOkam centered around the single
consonant of " Tha " , the sandhis yield a variety of amazing 
meanings summarized above.We will cover only a few of them below:

thatha = visthirutham or covering extensively 
( Steps of the PaadhukhAs are referrd to here )

athatthathaa = That which has the attribute of 
tavelling every where  ( the reach of the PaadhukhAs
of the Lord is referred to here )

tatth = Brahma sabdham 

athithuth = one that banishes completely

ithAtha = father of manmathan 

thaathathi = becomes the Father 

The sharing of the duties of PaadhukhA with the other Devis

This slOkam is an echo of the 7th slOkam of the Dvandhva
Paddhathi of Sri RanganAtha PaadhukhA sahasram :

paarsvayO; sarasijA VasundharE
 PaadhayOsccha MaNipaadhukE ! YuvAM
sannikarshatha na chEth madhu Dhvisha:
 kim karishyathi kruthAgasAm GaNa: 

(Meaning ): What can the assembly of sins do ,
when Sri Devi and BhU devi are on both sides
of the Lord and You , Oh PaadhukhE are at His
feet ? If all the three of You are not at
Your special sthAnams , what will indeed 
happen to our sins ? Without Your intercessions
for us , the MahA Paapis , there will be no 
deliverance from our Paapams and there will 
be no redemption for us .

This is the thought that Sri PoundarIkapuram 
AchAryan covered at the end of his UpanyAsam
on "PirAnum PirAttikaLum " that we could not hear 
fully due to line problems on the tele-bridge.

In summary ,the AchArya PrabhAvam is saluted 
in this Chithra Paddhathi SlOkam by Swami
Desikan , while he symbolically pays homage to
the divya MaNI PaadhukhAs of Sri RanganAtha
Para Brahmam .

Swami Desikan ThiruvadigaLE SaraNam ,
Oppiliappan Koil VaradachAri Sadagopan