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From: Sadagopan (sgopan_at_computer.net)
Date: Wed Mar 04 1998 - 18:52:08 PST
Dear BhakthAs : Now that we have been blessed to assemble the funds needed for the Mutthangi Kaimkaryam for the uthsava divya dampahtis of Oppiliappan Koil , I will proceed in a spirit of utter gratefulness to them offer my tribute to the Mahimai of BhUmi Devi and her Consort . I will cover the extraordinary tribute that Swami Desikan paid to BhUmi Devi of Oppilaippan Koil and link it to the BhUsUktham of Taittireeya Samhithai and Sage VyasA's Srimadh Bhaagavatham passages as well as that of Sri NaarAyana Bhattadhiri . May the most merciful Mother bless us all in this effort of celebrating her Mahimai . BhUsUktham's majestic tribute ****************************** The first manthram of BhUsUktham starts majestically and addresses Her with great awe and wonder this way : BhUmirbhUmnA dhyaur variNA anthariksham mahithvA I upasthE thE dEvyadhithE agnim annAdham annAdhyAyAdhathE II Oh Bhumi PirAtti ! Thou art vast in area and shine forth in a manner appreciated by all ! Thou art supreme in Your kalyANa guNAs . Oh Bhumi Devi , who can not be cut asunder by anyone ! I invoke the Agni devan in Your midst who can partake the offerd Havis so that we can enjoy good harvests and nourishing food . The link of Bhumi Devi and Havis in the Yaagam immediately reminds us of Her dear Consort, Yajna NaarAyaNan /Yaj~na VarAhan saluted by the Sri VishNu Sahasra Naamaa Passage : BhUr bhuva: svastaru:thAra: SavithA PrapithAmaha:I Yaj~nO Yaj~napathir yajvA Yaj~ngO Yaj~na vAhana: II Yaj~na bhruth Yaj~na kruth Yaj~nee Yaj~na bhugh Yaj~na sAdhana:I Yaj~nthakruth yaj~na guhya: annam annAdha yEva cha II It is instructive to see the link betwen annam ( food as well as the object of enjoyment), Agni , Yaj~nam and Yaj~na NaarAyaNa mUrthy , the consort of BhUmi Devi in both the first manthram of BhU sUktham and the above passage of Sri VishNu Sahasra nAmam . That YajvA ( the One who performs the Yaj~nam ) and Yaj~na Vaahanan( One who helps others to complete their Yaj~nams ) is the Sarva sEshi of all Yaj~nams . He is Yaj~nee for whose sake the sacrifices have been created . He accepts and enjoys the Havis offered at those Yaj~nams as Yajn~a bhukh . He as the consort of BhUmi Devi is the annam or the object of enjoyment and is the enjoyer of those , who enjoy Him as the AnnadAh . The secret behind the Yaj~nam ( Yaj~na guhyam ) is the Lord Himself as stated by the passage : " All the VedAs and all that has to be learnt , all the SaasthrAs and all yaj~nAs and and all worship --ALL are Sri KrishNA ! O Kings ! Those , who know KrishNA corectly in this way , may be considered to have completed successfully all yaj~nAs . " The relation between our Mother BhUmi Devi and Her consort and our Father is celebrated in the context of the yaj~nam in the second manthram of BhU SUktham : aayan gau: pruchnirakmeedh asanan mAtharam puna: I pitharam cha prayan suva: II Sri Vishnu Sahasra Naamam passage quoted above saluted the link between Bhu: Bhuva: and Suva: this way : BhUr Bhuva: svas tharu: tAra: SavithA prapithAmaha: This great grandfather (prapithAmahar ) , this great producer/creator of every thing (savithA / Surya NarAyaNan ) , who helps people cross the turbulent ocean of SamsArA is compared to a Brahma Taru ( Eternal Tree of Brahman ) , the tree for the beings of all the three worlds : earth ( BhU: ) , Sky ( bhuva: ) and heaven ( sva:) . This effulgent divine tree spreading from Earth to Heaven is both the Mother , who nourishes us with life-giving food ( BhU Devi ) and the benovolent Father ( Yaj~na NaarAyaNan ) , who blesses the Earth with rain to make it ready to produce the nourishing food . ANDAL , who is none other than BhUmi Devi has referred to this tatthuvam in the third ThiruppAvai Paasuram this way : " --theenginiri nAdellAm thingaL mummAri peythu -- neengAtha selvam nirainthElOrempAvAi " The BhUsUktham concludes with a beautiful NaamArchanai of BhUmi Devi's anantha KalyANa GuNAs , which Swami Desikan echos in his BhU sthuthi . Some of the names used by the Vedam as salutation to BhU Devi are : mEdhiniee dEvi VasundharA --VasudhA devi Vaasavee I --- dEvi HiraNyagarbhiNI devi PrasUvaree --- Samudhravathee Saavithree ha nO devi mahyangee I --Indrapathnee vyApinee --- Vaayumahtee jalasayanee sriyandhA -- VishNupathneem Maheem Deveem Madhaveem MaadhavapriyAm , Lakshmee Priyasakeem Deveem namAmyacchutha VallabhAm II Om DhanurdharAyai VidhmahE sarvasiddhyasccha dheemahi I tannO dharA prachOdhayAth II The above pasage of BhUsUktham has to be compared to the sixth slOkam of Sri BhU sthuthi of Swami Desikan to apppreciate his anubhavam of the Mahimai of BhU Devi . In the fifth slOkam , he explained to us as how Her grace nourishes all the worlds ( Visvam Tvadh aasrithathayA paripOshavanthee ) . This again is a reference to the nourishing power of BhU devi celebrated in the Veda manthram . That the Lord Himself rejuvenates and enhances His well being thru His assoication with BhU devi is the conclusion of Swami Desikan ( Maadhavee !Tvadh SangamAdh Bhavathi labdha pOsha : ) . Such is the greatnes of BhUmi Devi , which we will explore in greater depth in the subsequent postings . Subhamasthu . Sri BhU Vallabhasya charaNou SaraNam prapathyE Oppiliappan Koil VaradAchAri SadagOpan Isvara Samvathsara , Maasi maasa , Sukhla Pakhsha Shashti dinam .