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From: V. Sadagopan (75041.3037_at_compuserve.com)
Date: Wed Jul 23 1997 - 15:29:05 PDT
Dear Sri KrishNamAchAri and Sri RamakrishNan BalasubramaNyan& friends : I will add some more notes . The naamam "sarvan " is common to BOTH VishNu and Sivan ( as kshithimoorthy , one of the 11 RudrAs/ ekAdasa RudrAs) celebrated in BaisAk temple in the island of Baali , IndonEsia . In the 11th chapter of Bhagavdh GItA ( Visva roopa darsana adhyAyam ) , The Lord says : " Behold the dvAdasa AdhithyAs , ekAdasa RudrAs , the twin Aswins and the Maruths ; behold , O descendant of Bharata , many wonders never seen before " ( Chapter 11. 6 ) . ArjunA describes the "Sarvan " aspect of ViswarUpi in terror this way in the 27 th verse of the 11 th chapter this way : " Verily , as the many torrents of rivers flow towards the ocean , so do these heroes in the world of men enter Thy fiercely flaming mouths " . ArjunA sees that these creatures enter the mouths of Sarvan as moths rushing in great haste into the flames just to perish . He says : " O Lord ! swallowing all the worlds on every side withb Thy flaming mouths , Thou art licking Thy lips . Arjuna is terrified and salutes the "Sarvan " and pleads for mercy and confesses " Na hi prajAnAmi tava pravrutthim " ( O primeval One ! I know not indeed Thy purpose ) . In addditon to the Occurence of the nAmam , "sarvan (as in Siva ) in Rudraprasnam /Sri Rudram/Satha Rudreeyam , we come across this name in the Kaavyams ( Raghuvamsam and KumAra Sambhavam ), purANam ( Vaamana PurANam ) and in Atharva Vedam in the 11 th canto twice . I will focus on the usage in AtharvaNa vedam after commenting briefly on the use of "sarvan " from the Saiva SiddhAntham perspective . As indicated earlier ,The noun "sarvan " is used both for Lord Siva and VishNu Bhagavan . When Lord SivA is referred to , the attribution is to His destructive aspects as saluted in Sri Rudram based on the route "sr". The name " Bhavan" coming before "sarvan " is associated with the aspects of creation . The fifth anuvAkam' s first and second manthrams in Sri Rudram are : namO bhavAya cha rudrAya cha I namssarvAya cha pasupathayE cha BTW ,these two manthrams have a profound significance to Saiva SiddhAntham . They describe Sri Rudran as the magnificient God , who engages in pancha krithyam: Srishti (creation ) , shtithi ( protection and maintenance ) , samharam ( destruction ) , TirOdhanam ( hiding the truth thru MaayA ) and anugraham ( siva loka prApthi ) . Lord NatarAjA , the cosmic dancer symbolizes the pancha krithyam in his body . If one intreprets " Siva " as auspiciousnes , then the pancha krithyam applies to VishNu as well in His avathAram as Vata pathra sAyee .. The little drum (damarukam/udukkai ) on the upper right hand of Lord NatarAjA symbolizes the act of creation . The birth of limitless creatures and their cry is associated by the sounds emanating from the play of the udukkai . This is the Bhava aspect . The hand gesture on the lower right hand (abhaya mudrA ) refers to the sthithi aspect of pancha krithyA. on the upper left hand is agni , which is nothing but praLaya kAlAgni denoting samhAram and the sarvA aspect . The bent right leg posted on the back of the demon muyalagan represents the veil of maayA . The lifted left leg ( kunchitha paadham ) stands for anugraham . In chidambaram , a vettivEr maalai fititng exactly the size of the ankle of the kunchitha paatham decorates the lifted feet at ardha jAma kaalam . Next morning , that maalai is given as prasAdam to a devotee by the muraikkArar . In saiva siddhantham , Siva does not create the jeevans . He creates the bodies that house the jeevans . This is His creation . He protects the bodies during their life on earth ( shtithi ) . At the conclusion of the earthly cycle , He destroys the bodies (samhAram ) . All of these three acts take place on this earth dealing with the bodies of living beings . The fourth and the fifth acts ( tirOdhanam and anugraham ) deal with jeevans as opposed to physical bodies By perfecting the jeevan inside , He prepares them to become fit to reach His holy feet (tirOdhanam ) . He then blesses the jeevan in its purified state to join Siva Saayujyam (anugraham ) . The relation between SivA and VishNu is spelled out at the end of Sri VishNu Sahasra Naamam during the occasion of celebrating Sri Raama nAmam in pala sruthi . The passages in the atharva Vedam are beautiful echos of Sri Rudram housed in the middle of Yajur Vedam . Atharva Vedam Khandam 11. hymn 2 is a sonorous appeal to Sarvan not to harm the beings : bhavAsarvou mrudatham mAapi yAtham bhoothapathi pasupathi namO vaam I prathihithAmAyathAm maa vi srAshtam maa nO himsishtam dvipadhOma chathushpadha : II --- AV XI .2 .1 (meaning ) : O Bhava and SarvA , make us happy and do n't attack us !Salutaions to You , TWIN LORDS of all living beings , beasts and emancipated souls ! Shoot not the arrow aimed and drawn against us . pledge to Save our bipeds and quadrupeds ! nama : sAyam nama ; prAtharnamO rAthryA namO divA I BHAVAAYA CHA SARVAAYA chObhAbhyAmakaram nama: II ---- AV XI . 2.16 (meaning ) : Salutations to the Lord at evening and at morning's early light ! Salutations at night and day ! To the Lord's powers of creation (Bhavan ) and dissolution/destruction (Sarvan ) , both , have I paid my humble salutaions ! bhavAsarvAvidam bhrumO Rudram Pasupathisccha ya : I yeeshUryA yeshAm samvidhma taa na: santhu sadhA SivA : II ------ AV XI . 6 . 9 (meaning ) : May we eulogize the different aspects of the Lord , as BhavA , SarvA , RudrA and Pasupathi . May we understand the doctrines behind these aspects. May they be ever compassionate towards us ! I wonder whether Parasara Bhattar did not elaborate on this VishNusahasra nAmam ( Sarvan ) because of its destructive connotations as referred to in the rks of Sri Rudram and Atharva vedam . I am equally surprised that Sankara Bhagavdh PaadAL did not elaborate either on this nAmam inview of or inspite of its hyperlinks to Sri Rudran ! V.Sadagopan P.S : Regarding SaaKagrama mAlais found as aabharaNams on the Moolavars of Divya dEsams , the saaLagramams are never drilled to make a hole . They will shatter . It appears that the sALagrAmamams are housed in gold -plated casings and the hooks are attached to the outside of the casings to connect them . Sri ThiruviNNagarappan ( Moolavar ) has a huge saaLagrAma mAlai , which seems to be constructed this way .