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Teliyatha Marai Nilangal Teligindrome-13

From: sadagopan iyengar (
Date: Fri Mar 30 2001 - 09:06:35 PST

       Srimate Srivan Satakopa Sri Vedanta Desika
Yatindra Maha Desikaya Nama:

Teliyatha Marai Nilangal Teligindrome-12
                       Having defined Paramatma as the
material and efficient cause of the Universe, the
Upanishad hastens to correct any misimpression the
reader might have formed about the measurability of
Paramatma. Though this visible world is indeed His  
manifestation , a knowledge of this world would not
necessarily lead to an understanding of Paramatma.
Thus, though this world may be measurable, Emperuman
is not.  
                      Even if one is able to get the
true measure of this Universe ( according to some
scientists, the circumference of this universe is
about 6000 million light years) the Sruti makes it 
abundantly clear that such a measure is only an
insignificant part of the Paramatma, who extends far
beyond, limitlessly, in all directions. According to
the  Upanishad , nobody can grasp His true
proportions: for good measure, it reiterates that
nobody can perceive the upper,lower or middle limits
of Brahman. Here is the tenth mantra –

  "na Enam oordhvam na tiryancham na madhyE
               This agrAhyatvam of Emperuman is
succinctly stated by Kari Maran thus-
 "Yarum Or nilaimayan ena arivariya emperuman"
"evarkkum chintaikkum gOcharam allan"
"eNNin meediyan emperuman"
"DamOdaranai tani mudalvanai ……aamO taram ariya" 

     Not content with extolling His physical 
immeasurability, the Upanishad states categorically
that He is the Lord of all Lords, has no superior
being and that His glory  is great , like Him.  .Here
is the second half of the tenth mantra-
  "na tasyEsE kaschana tasya nAma mahat yasa:"
Emperuman's samAdhika daridratvam (absence of an equal
or superior being) is brought out by the following
extracts from Tiruvaimozhi-
 "Mal tanil mikkum Or dEvum uLadE'
 "otthAr mikkArai ilayAya mAmAyA"
 "otthArum mikkArgalum tan tanakku indri nindrAn"
 "paranjOti nee paramAi nindru igazhndu pin matrOr
paranjOti inmayin padiyOvi nigazhgindra paranjOti
GovindA" etc.
"Tasya nAma mahat yesa:"-Great indeed is His glory. It
 should be crystal clear even to the dullest of the
dull, from the attributes listed in the aforesaid nine
mantras, that there cannot be a higher glory than that
of the Paramatma. Still, leaving nothing to
inference,the Upanishad states categorically that
Emperuman's glory is limitless.

  Here are Sri Nammazhwar's sreesooktis on Emperuman's
glory or pugazh-
   "vAttamil pugazh vAmanan" "vaN pugazh nAraNaN"
   "painthuzhAyAn perumai pErtthum oruvarAl pEsak
  "en SingappirAn perumai aarAyum seermaitthE"
  "pugazhunal oruvan engO"
  "aaya perum pugazh ellai ilAdana"
  "aarnda pugazh achutan"
  "kEdil vizhuppugazh kEsavan" 
  "viri pugazhAn" etc.

Though the Upanishad stops with extolling the
greatness of Paramatma's glory, Sri Nammazhwar goes
several steps further and says that His glory, like
Him, is limitless and immeasurable: not even He
Himself is  aware of its true proportions. The
following sreesooktis fromTiruvaimozhi bear this out-

"tAnum tan perumai arivariyAnai"
"yAnum Etthi Ezhulagum mutrum Etthi pinnum
 tAnum Etthilum tannai Ettha Ettha engu eithum" etc.
Thus Tiruvaimozhi lays down that agrAhyatvam or
imperceptibility applies not only to Paramatma but
also to His glory: and further, even Paramatma is
unaware of the true measure of His own geatness.

  We are almost tempted to ascribe a new meaning to
the tirunAmam "avigyAtA" (one who doesn't  know)
occurring in Sri Vishnu sahasranamam, and define
Emperuman as avigyAtA because he doesn't know the
boundaries of His own glory or that of His divine
Here, a couple of poorvAchArya sreesooktis are to be
First, in Sri ChatusslOki, Sri AlavandAr says "yesAstE
mahimAnam aatmana iva tvad vallabhOpi prabhu: nAlam
mAtum iyattayA niravadhim nityAnukoolam svata:"
 Paraphrasing and expanding on this,  Sri
KoorattAzhwAn, in his Sristavam, avers "dEvi tvat
mahimAvadhi: na HariNa nApi tvayA gyAyatE".  The
purport of this is that Emperuman does not know for
sure the boundaries of PirAtti's glory, nor does She
Herself know it.
  At this , one might ask whether such ignorance (even
of one's own greatness) is not a blemish on the
spotless Lord and detract from His omniscience or
sarvagyatvam. Pat comes the reply to this question ,
from Sri KoorattAzhwan, again in the Sristavam- 
ignorance refers to lack of knowledge of the knowable
or existing thing. No one can be blamed for not
knowing the non-existant. As there are no limits to
His greatness, ignorance of its measure cannot be held
against Emperuman, nor will it make Him any the less
  To be continued- dasan, sadagopan.

Srimate Sri lakshmiNrsimha Diva padukasevaka
SrivanSatakopa Sri Narayana Yatindra Maha Desikaya

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