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A SanyAsi ascends the AchArya Peetam : Part 7.2

From: V. Sadagopan (75041.3037_at_compuserve.com)
Date: Fri Jul 18 1997 - 04:47:13 PDT

Dear Nrusimha BhakthAs :

6 . Thirucchemponchey Kovil

This divya desam is considered as the central gem 
of the 11 ThirunAngUr divya desams ( Naayaka MaNi ) .
The presiding deity (uthsavar ) is PEraruLALan ( Varadhan ) .
The mUlavar is Sempon RanganAthan . 
ThAyAr is Allimaamalar NaacchiyAr . Thirumangai 
placed 10 paasurams at the lotus feet of these ArchA
Moorthys. 

Thirumangai salutes the Lord with His consorts , Sri Devi and 
Bhu dEvi . He recognizes Him as the water-laden , dark cloud
of the rainy season , which cools us off from the scorching heat
of the taapams of SamsArA . In the first paasuram , AzhwAr
declares that all his anxieties are over now that he has had 
the sevai of PEraruLAlan with Sri Devi and Bhu Devi at
Thirucchemponsey kovil .

AzwhAr suggests that the Lord acquired His name as pEraruLALan
( the great boon giver ) , because of the presence of Sri Devi
an Bhu DEvi on his sides. AzhwAr declares that he ahd the
darsanam of the Lord with ubhaya NaacchimArs ( kandu),
held that vision in his heart (kondu ) and had his salvation 
as a result ( uynthu ozhindEnE ) . 

In yet another paasuram , AzhwAr states that 
the Lord of Semponseykoil is like the  compassionate 
mother responding with alacrity and concern to alleviate 
the sufferings of her child .Avyaja KaruNai of the Lord in 
His role as Daasarathi is referred to here by the AzhwAr . 

7. ThiruttheRRiambalam

At this divya desam , PerumAL's naamam is SenkaNmAl 
and His naacchiyAr's name is Semgamalavalli . He gives
us darsanam in bhujanga sayanam. Kaliyan salutes Him as 
aapath sahAyan in his ten paasurams . he gives prominence to
NeeLA deVi in more than one paasuram . In one , he is awed by 
the valour of the Lord , who destroyed seven mighty oxen to win 
the hand of Nappinnai .

Azhwar  remembers that the Lord took all that trouble 
to win Nappinnai as His bride. What did he do ? The father
of Nappinnai had seven strong black oxen with dangerous , 
curved horns like  scimitars , mighty temper , strong legs 
and fierce apppearances . Any one , who wanted to compete
for the hands of Nappinnnai had to subdue those bulls in
combat . All those , who contended to get Nappinnai's hand 
in marriage were gored by the bulls in their fights. Nithya Noothana
YuvA ( KrishNA ) entered the bull ring , subdued and  destroyed 
the bulls . He became the winner of this KanyA sulkam and
married Nappinnai , who is none other than NeeLA Devi 
saluted by NeeLA sUktham as , " NeeLAm dEveem saraNamaham 
prapadhyE sutharasitarasE nama: GruNAhi--" and " MahA dEvyai cha
vidhmahE VishNu pathnyai cha dheemahi " . 

May we obtain the blessings of SenkaNmAl KaNNan 
through the grace of Nappinnai piratti celebrated by
AaNdAL in Thiruppavai as well .

8. Thiru MaNikkodam 

PerumAL and ThAyAr's naamams are Sri MaNikkoda nAyakan
and Thiru MAmahaL NaacchiyAr . Kaliyan points out that this
divya dEsam in the middle of the fertile Cauvery delta is full 
of all auspiciousness ( Sarva Sampaths ) :

poompunal Ponni muRRum puhundhu pon varaNda  yenghum
tEmpozhil kamazhu NaanGoor ThirumaNikkudatthAnE 

" odhalar pozhil ThirumaNikkUda  nAthAr " stands under 
the Kanaka vimAnam on the banks of divine Cauveri river 
and gives us His blessed darsanam with His Devi . AzhwAr 
recognizes Him as " Pinnai sevvitthOL puNarntha venthai "
( the Lord , who is in union  with Nappinnai pirAtti ) . He also
salutes Him as Jaanaki RamaNan :

perumahaL pEthai mangai tannOdum pirivilAtha
ThirumahaL maruvu Naangoor  ThirumaNikkUdatthAnE 

AzhwAr salutes the wife of Raghu vamsa tilakam and the dear
daughter of the king Janaka , who is the embodiment of dharmam
and J~nAnam here as the NirdhOsha KalyANa guNa svarUpi and 
the cause of the auspiciousnes of the Lord of this Thiruppathi .
AzhwAr recognizes Him as " Moovaril mUrthy mudalvan "
( the first among the trinity ) . He concludes his tribute to 
this KshEthram by pointing out the blessed people , who have 
the darsanam of the Divya dampathis here would be blessed 
with all auspiciousness in their lives on earth and will enter 
Sri Vaikuntam thereafter.

9. ThiruveLLakkuLam (aNNan kovil )

This divya dEsam is celebrated as DakshiNa Thiruppathi .
This is the birth place of Kumuda valli NaacchiyAr , who
married Thirumangai and was instrumental in transforming 
him into a Sri VaishNavan . Under the shade of TatvathOdaka
vimAnam , KaNNan gives us His darsanam with His pirAtti ,
PoovAr ThirumahaL NaacchiyAr . Thirumangai's saraNAgathi 
here is a moving one . He addresses the Lord endearingly 
with the epithet , aNNA < and prays :
ThiruveLLakkuLatthuL aNNA ! adiyEN idari kaLayAyE , nediyAyai!
adiyEn idar neekkE ! " . He continues to implore the Lord to remove
all the obstacles standing in his way to get moksham . His moving
prayers shows his aathuram and intense desire to obtain the divya
dampathi's blessings :

" aanAi adiyEnukku aruL puriyAyE !

ThiruveLLakkuLatthAnE !yellavidarum kedumARu aruLAyE !

SeerAr pozhil ThiruveLLakkuLatthuL AarAvamudhE ! AdiyErkkaruLAyE !

MaalE ! yen valvinai theerttharuLAyE ! 

ThiruveLLakkuLatthuraivAnE ! aavA ! adiyEn ivan yenru aruLAyE ! " .

These paasurams have been intrepreted by our pUrvAchAryAs 
as the commentary on the the second section of the sacred 
Dhvaya nmanthram . Kaliyan is understood to have prayed to
the divya dampathis for pUrNa kaimkarya anugraha siddhi 
through Dhvaya manthram ( PadmAsahAya saraNAgathi
manthram according to Swami Desikan ) . This sacred dhvaya
manthram is considered as the dawn for the dark night of praLayam
( KaaLa raathri ) by Swami Desikan ( PrathyUshathAm bhajathi
samsruthi KaalarAthrE : ) . 

May we understand and practise the meanings of these 
paasurams of Kaliyan that are close to the Dhvaya manthram
and obtain the anugraham of the aNNan  Koil divya dampathis !

10. ThirukkavaLampAdi 

This thiruppathi is at a distance of seven miles from 
SeerkAzhi . Here, Sri GopAla KrishNan stands under 
Svayambhu vimAnam with His dEvis , Madavaral Nangai ,
Sengamalvalli nAcchiyAr , RukmiNi and SatyabhAmA awaiting 
His bhakthAs . This temple has AarAdhanam only once each day
at 10 AM . It is very much different in this aspect from other temples
with pancha kaala pUjas . Close to this divya dEsam is 
ThirukkurayalUr , the birth place of  Thirumangai AzhwAr . 
Three furlongs off from ThirukkurayalUr in the opposite 
direction of ThirukkAvaLampAdi is  Mangai matam  , where 
AzhwAr conducted TadheeyAradhanams to Sri VaishNavAs 
to win the hand of Kumudavalli NaacchiyAr . At ThirukkurayalUr ,
there is a beautiful and majestic archA mUrthy of BhagavAn
NarasimhAn . One can relate Thirumangai Azhwar's names ,
adayAr seeyam and arattu amukki , to that of Lord Lakshmi 
Nrusimhan . Seeyar means a Lion . AdayAr means mARRAr 
or those , who are bhagavadh dvEshis ( enemies of the Lord ) .
Like  Sri Nrusimhan , Kaliyan with his sword and shield as well
as the spear went after the enemies of the Lord like a Lion
goes after its prey . Thus he shares the guNam of Nrusimhan .
Arattu amukki means the one who crushes the ones , who have
ill will towards the BahgavathAs .Here again , we can see the 
guNa saamyam with the Lord Nrusimhan . 

Coming back to ThirukkAvaLampAdi thiruppathi , one of the Pancha
KrishNa kshEthrams of ChoLa naadu , Thirumangai performed 
SaraNAgathi to KaNNan , Just as ArjunA did at KurukshEthram :

" yacchrEya: syanniscchitham brUhi tanmE sishyasthEham 
maam tvAm PRAPANNAM " 

Arjuna in the state of Aakinchayam begged the Lord to do whatever 
that He considered appropriate and auspicious for him as a Sishyan
and Prapannan . Tirumangai in a similar mood of utter helplessness
appealed to the Lord nine times in his paasurams and recognized Him 
as his upAyam for the rakshaNam :

" KaavaLampAdi mEya KaNNanE kaLai kaN neeyE ! " 

May we seek the blessings of Sri Gopala KrishNan 
and Mada varal mangai ( MahA Lakshmi ) in the manner
in which Thirumangai showed us the way and perform 
SaraNAgathi and benefit ! 

11 . ThiruppArthan PaLLi

This divya dEsam is at a distance of two and half miles from
ThirunAngUr . The ArchA mUrthys are Sri  tAmaraiyAL kELvan
and Sri  tAmarai nAyaki . They stand under nArAyaNa vimAnam .
In addiiton to the ten paasurams of Thirumangai , there is a
eleventh paasuram for tis KshEthram by Poygai AazhwAr 
in Mudal ThiruvandhAdhi . 

tAmaraiyAL kELvan means that He is the Lord of MahA Lakshmi .
We can also intrepret this name of His to mean that He is the one,
who listens to the sipArisu of Sri Devi to forgive our trespasses 
and grats us Moksham . In this context ParAsara Bhattar has 
saluted MahA Lakshmi's greatness in his guNa rathna kOsam 
as exceeding that of Her Lord :

Sriya: sree: ! Sri RangEsaya ! tava cha hrudhyAm Bhagavatheem
Sriyam tvathoapyucchai: vayamiha PaNAma: sruNatarAm I
dhrusou tE bhooyAsthaam sukha taraLatArE sravaNatha :
punarharshOthkarshAth spurath bhujayO : kanchukasatham II

( meaning ) : My Lord ! Sri ranganAthA ! You indeed are the one
enhances the beauty of Your dEvi ( Thiruvukkum ThiruvAhiya selvan ) .
She is your prANa nAdi ( Life force ) . She is equal to You in Her 
six guNAs such as J~nAnam , Balam , tEjas , Isvaryam et al . 
We assess  that She excells You through  Her guNam 
of PurushakAram . 

Sri parAsara Bhattar was indeed the purOhithar of tAmaraiyAL
kELvan ( Sri RanganAthA ) . If any pone can understand the relative
excellence among the divya dampathis , he is eminently qualiifed 
to do so ! Hence , he bluntly stated about Her superiority in this way .

Ahirbudhnya Samhithai slOkam states that BhagavAn and Lakshmi 
are sarva sEshis When one approaches them through the upAyams 
of Bhakthi and /or Prapatthi , one obtains j~nAnam that is equivalent
to paripUrNa brahmAnubhavam . This arises from the orientation ,
" oNN tAmaraiyAL kELvan nOkkum uNarvu " . When approached 
in this manner , We recognize the presence of the Divya Dampathis
as antharyAmi Brahmam without any separation and are a unitary
principle as stated in the samhithai slOkam :

nArAyaNa param Brahma sakthirnArAyaNee cha saa I
vyApakAvathi samslEshAth ekatattvamivOdhithou II

He is the Lord , who went after the nectar of femininity ,
while the dEvAs focussed on the nectar that would make 
them free from old age and death ( ViNNavaramudhuNa vamudhil
peNNamudhunda emperumAn ) . She is the nectar of nectars 
that arose out of the milky ocean . His love for Her will not 
permit Him to ignore her sipArisu ( PurushakAram ) for us ,
the erring jeevans . He demonstrates His dayA svarUpam 
in response to Her recommendation and intercession 
and blesses us with Moksham . Swami Desikan explains 
this extraordinary relationship between the divya dampathis
this way in Sri Rahasya traya Saaram  :

" InnamudatthamudAlirangu ThirunAraNanE 
  manniya van SaraN maRROr paRRInRi varippavarkkE " 

Thirumangai remembere d the special anugraham of 
ParthasArathy to ArjunA and entered into the role of 
parakAla nAyaki and reminded the Lord that "she "
will follow the model of AalrmElmangai , who vowed 
not to leave Her husband's chest even for a fraction of
a second ( AhalahillEn ) . 

The paasurams of Paarthan PaLLI are throught he mouth of 
the mother of ParakAla nAyaki . The mother reminds the Lord
that her young and beautiful  daughter is intoxicated with His
beauty and is spending all of her time awaiting His arrival .
The mother is clearly worried about the obsession of her 
daughter and describes her daughter's pitiable plight to 
the Lord of Parthan PaLLI   : 

naadiyenrnuLLam konda nAthan yenrum  nAnmaRaigaL
tEdi yenrum kANamAttA selvan Yenrum siraikoLL vandu 
sEdulavu pozhil koLL nAngai dEvadEvan yenrenrOdhi 
paatam sEr melladiyAL PaarthanpaLLI pAduvALE 

The mother says that her daughter insists that tAmaraiyAL 
kELvan has come by and entered her heart . She says that 
the vEdAs are searching for Him everywhere not knowing that
their EmperumAn has taken up residence in her heart. She
blurts out that the vEdAs are dismayed . She spends all her
time decorating herseldf with ankle ornaments (silampu ) 
and other jewelery awaiting your arrival . In between  , she is 
singing about the glory of Your Thiruppathi and Your 
kolatthirumEni ( beautiful form ) . Thirumangai described his 
deep love for Sriman NArAyaNA of this KshEhtram through 
the words of his mother here .

May we all be blessed by Thirumangai's tributes to the 
ArchA mUrthys of the eleven ThirunAngUr divya desams and 
benefit from shtira bhakthi to the divya dampathis ! 

AzhwAr ThiruvadigaLE SaraNam
Oppiliappan Kovil VaradAchAri sadagopan