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Thiruvaaimozhi 4.1- Transitory lives! momentary pleasures! Terrible sufferings!

From: Madhavakkannan V (
Date: Mon Mar 16 1998 - 20:47:19 PST


Dearest Sisters and Brothers,

In the last three hundreds of Thiruvaaimozhi, NammAzhwAr blessed us with 
the essence of the second line of dwayam i.e "SrimathE NarayaNaya 
Namah:". The next three hundreds (4,5, &6) are going to bless us with 
the first line of dwaya manthram : "Sriman NarayaNa saraNau saraNam 
prapadyE". He has enjoyed to the fullest extent the darshan and bliss of 
Emperumaan Sriya: Pathih Sriman NarayaNan. 

In this decad of Thiruvaaimozhi 4.1, he explains and narrates the 
non-permanence of wealth, power (that we think we have in this world). 
He describes the triviality of these so-called wealths and its 
lowliness, and asserts the importance and necessity for us to catch hold 
of Emperumaan’s Lotus Feet as the Purushaartham. (Dear Sisters and 
Brothers, this decad is my favourite for its very explanation of "alpam" 
of material benefits that we get from our lives and running AMUCK after 
such pursuits. They are simply great narration by AzhwAr- Please be 
blessed and let us try to give it a thought now at least, dear ones!)

1.  Even the great king and the ruler, with enormous powers to capture 
and rule the entire world, if he gets beaten and lost in a battle(which 
is more likely as is seen in the history), he has to beg in the streets 
ultimately to even survive. Such chakravarthis after having lost their 
kingdoms, have suffered holding a small broken mud pot as a vessel to 
beg in the streets and gets bitten by the black street dog (which they 
step on due to poor vision due to their hunger). The ones who used to 
give other small lands for them to rule (under their powers) are now in 
the utter lowest position of begging in the streets. Hence, if you 
raelise the non-permanence of ones’ power/position, you will not bother 
to run after the positions/powers and catch hold of the Lotus Feet of 
Sriman NarayaNan and be saved for ever for a Beautiful future. Go right 
ahead and catch the Biggest Wealth; 

2.  If you want to live, you should pay me some fief (or tax) 
("kappam")- like that the king brings the entire world under his kingdom 
(bringing all local small rulers under him by fighting and winning over 
them in battles); The same great king very soon loses in some other 
battle and loses his kingdom to some others and loses his darling wives 
to another. They then suffer in the hot son looking for some water and 
fruits hiding themselves in the forests for their survival. There also, 
they get caught by his enemies and undergo suffering. Hence, Realise 
this and right now, pay obeisance to the Lotus Feet of Emperumaan and be 

3.  Chakravarthis, once were ruling the entire world with the other 
kings at their feet paying fief;  they were sitting on the throne with 
the drums sounding like thunder; the same chakravarthis, later, lose all 
their kingdoms and become pulverised like dust and are not even in the 
scene; Hence, right now, think of the Lotus Feet of KaNNan, who wears 
the Most Fragrant garland of thuLasi on His Head. 

4.  the kings who ruled the world for ages have also gone to dust; such 
numbers, if you try to count, they will be more than the sands that you 
can see at the beach. Not only were they lost in the sands of time, also 
were their kingdoms. Nothing of theirs is seen today. No remains at all 
is seen. Hence, prostrate at the Lotus Feet of KaNNan, who killed the 
kuvalayaapeetam (the big elephant which was sent by kamsa to kill 

5.  Even the great, big, chakravarthis were slaves of their beautiful 
damsels in the harem; Inside the room, on their cool beds, they were at 
the feet of those damsels and were begging them for their mercy for 
mating them. The same kings, later after losing to another king, are 
standing on the streets like a beggar, with the small loin cloth hanging 
in the front and are laughed at by the same damsels with whom they had 
enjoyed. (Please do not believe such "useless", transitory, 
non-permanent lives!). Hence, please utter His thirunaamam "NarayanA" 
right now and save yourselves; He is My Emperumaan, who has got the Most 
Beautiful Divine Body, glittering like the Blue Emerald stone. 

6.  From time immemorial, there is no one who has lived like a king for 
ever; They all have lived like the rain droplets and die like them; None 
has been in a wealthy good position from the beginning to the end. (let 
us not attribute this to one life; this includes all births of ours). If 
you need PERMANENT Purushaartham, then immediately servant of 
SarvEshwaran, who is having His Yoga NithrA in the deep, Big Milk Ocean.

7.  The ugly, filthily rich people eat their stomach filled food of 
various tastes and roll down trying to make it get digested. While doing 
so, their soft spoken, beloved damsels used to request them with their 
sweet voices asking them to eat more food and even used to feed them 
with their hands. These idiots used to eat them too in addition to their 
stomachfuls. Such days are only short-lived! Later, they lose all their 
money and wealth and to fill their stomach, they used to beg in front of 
the same beloved’s’ houses and were even chased away by them for want of 
money. They beg them "please give me at least a handful of old remains 
of your yesterday’s food" . What a shameful life! Is it worth all the 
trouble? Hence, RIGHT NOW, It is best for our own sake to involve 
yourself in the enjoyment of the Most Auspicious attributes (kalyANa 
guNAs) of Emperumaan, the Primordial Chief and the eternal jOthi, who 
wears the lovely Thuzhaay maalai on His head. Enjoy His beauty ( and get 
out of HERE! (from these shameful lives!)) 

8.  The virtuous kings, as a dharmA, rule the world selflessly (like 
Janaka MahArAjA) and protects the people as their duties, knowing fully 
well all the times, that the kingdom which they are granted with is the 
grace and mercy of the Lord Sriman NarayaNan, the Emperumaan. If they do 
not know that and think that it is they who own them and it is due to 
their efforts and powers they are what they are, they  may be happy for 
some years; but alas! It will definitely GO! They will lose them 
soonest. Hence, read the names of the Lord who sleeps on AdhisEshA. You 
can get the wealth that you will NEVER LOSE. (By doing duties for 
material benefits, then it is all likely that it will be lost sooner. 
Hence, DO NOT look for benefits and perform the duties unattached to its 
fruits as if we are performing ThiruvaarAdhanam for Him, that will fetch 
us the mOksham. )

9.  (The above eight pAsurams narrate the non-permanence of these 
materialstic lives / benefits; now, in this pAsuram, azhwAr says that 
the power one gets with the penance (thapas) is also His grace only.) 
those who like to do penance, renounce all their desires and attachments 
to the materialistic fruits and to their kith and kin. They shed all 
their attractions to the various ornaments and win all their sensual 
desires; They do penance for years together and accumulate lot of sands 
and dust over their bodies while doing so; Even such tapaswis, if they 
do not hold the feet of Emperumaan firmly (and are after some other 
benefits), then they can not get into the Swargam (heaven). They will 
come back to the earth again and be born in these worlds and suffer;  
Hence, Please hold the Feet of Emperumaan, (who comes on GarudA) firmly 
and be blessed to get into THE PERMANENT ABODE OF HIS HOME.

10.  (In the above 9 pAsurams, AzhwAr says both aishwaryam and 
swargAnubhavam are NOT PERMANENT. Even though the kaivalyam of 
AthmAnubhavam is good and yields benefits to us, it is nothing compared 
to the eternal happiness and bliss one gets by rendering service to 
Emperumaan - so says AzhwAr in this last pAsuram of this decad). The 
person who desires kaivalya anubhavam controls the mind, renounces the 
desires and unites the mind with the Athman (the form of jnAnA) and 
enjoys the bliss of such unity. The jnAnis who think of such enjoyment 
(the AthmAnubhavam ) as mOksham- if they do not consider Emperumaan as 
the means (upaayam) then their karmAs will not go off; they will remain 
and bring them back to the earth. There is no moksham if they can not 
think of Emperumaan (even if they try to hold their minds under control 
for some other benefits); Holding the Blemishless faultless Emperumaan’s 
Feet and rendering service to Him is the only Purushaartham and is the 
means for mOksham. 

11.  What was told above is the only way for redemption and mOksham- i.e 
Holding firmly the Lotus Feet of KaNNan is the above 1000 pAsurams of 
NammAzhwAr as a bhAgawatha kaimkaryam. Out of those 1000, these ten 
pAsurams talk about the necessity of taking refuge at His Feet. Those 
who read and learn them will NOT GET ANY SORROWS / PAINS / GRIEVANCES. 
(means: They will REALISE that running after materialistic / sensual 
pleasures is of transitory nature and will overcome the small (little) 
value purushaarthams of aishwaryam and kaivalyam. They will consider 
only rendering eternal service to Emperumaan (kaimkaryam) as the only 
PURUSHAARTHAM and will hence, thereafter have NO SORROWS. Any other 
pleasure is associated with pains and sorrows.        

Sisters and Brothers - an excellent decad - all about the transitory 
life! The momentary  pleasures and associated terrible pains! - the 
non-permanence of wealth (or money!). how nicely azhwAr (disgustingly) 
narrates all these! (On the same token, There are nice such poems of 
Pattinatthaar , a Tamil poet who had written lot of philosophical poems 
in Tamil;  Though a shaivite, his poems talk well about the transitory 
nature of our lives. There is at least one that I remember: "vittu 
vidapOguthu uyir- vitta vudan, udalaich chuttu vidap pOginRaar 
suRRatthaar"- Look at the tamil. The meaning is : the uyir (life) has to 
go; and immediately the dear ones are going to burn your body; (so why 
to run after bodily pleasures?)) 

NammAzhwAr thiruvadigaLE saraNam

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