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Maha Lakshmi Krithis of Dikshithar --3

From: V. Sadagopan (75041.3037_at_CompuServe.COM)
Date: Thu May 09 1996 - 18:27:38 PDT

In the last posting , I referred to an incident in
Dikshithar"s life that led to the creation of 
the Danyaasi Krithi , Mangala Devathayaa 
Tvyaa Bahumaanithoham ".One of the 
members of our group kindly  pointed out that the
salutation of Maha Lakshmi as Mangala Devatha 
was done by Adi Sankara in the first slokam of 
Kanaka Dhaaraa stotram. Dikshitar took then 
his cue from Adi Sankara. In this Krithi, he 
expressed his  thanks to  Maha Lakshmi for Her 
intercession to cure the infatuation that his 
second wife had for Jewelery and Gold .
He had composed the night before a krithi in
Ragam Lalitha requesting such an intercession. 
There he declared his resolve that he
 will not  approach any  wealthy person  and beg for 
favors. Maha Lakshmi responded to that
firm Bhakthi/Vairagyam  of Dikshithar and appeared in
the dream of his wife , who thereafter lost her desire for 
worldly wealth. Hence the Lalitha Raga  Krithi and the 
Dhanyaasi Krithi are very closely connected to that
incident in Dikshitar's life.

We will focus on the Lalithaa Raga krithi in this posting.
Dikshitar chose the ragam Lalithaa for saluting Maha Lakshmi
and expressing his resolve about approaching the wealthy ones of 
dubious conduct. This is a Panchama Varja Ragam with 
the five svarams of Suddha Daivatam, Suddha Rishabham, 
Suddha Madhyamam , Antara Ghaandhaaram and Kakali
Nishadham . This is sung in the Jaamam before Sunrise 
typically for getting the full blessings of the svara Devathaas.
Although the goals of this group is focussed more on Bhakthi 
as opposed to Sangitham , I will mention in passing for the sake 
of completion that Lalitha Raagam and Vasanthaa Ragam are 
very close to each other. They  differ only in the Daivatha Svaram. 
Vasantha has Chatusruhti Daivatham and Lalithaa has Suddha
Daivatham. 

The sahityam of this Lalithaa Raga Krithi are as follows:

Pallavi:          HiraNmayeem Lakshmeem sadhaa bhajaami
                       Heena manavaasrayam tyajaami 

Anupallavi:   Chiratara sampath prathaam Ksheerambhudi Tanayam
                       Hari Vakshasthala Aalayaam Harineem charana Kisalayaam
                       Kara Kamala dhruta Kuvalayaam maragatha mani Valayaam

Charanam:  Sveta Dwipa vaasinieem srikalaambhikaam
                       Bhootha bhavya vilaasineem bhusura pujithaam varaam
                       Mataram Abjamaalineem maanikya Aabharanadharaam 
                       Gita Vadhya vinodhineem girijaam taam Indiraam
                       seetha kirana nibha vadanaam sritha chintaamani sadhanaam
                       Peetha vasanaam Guru Guha Maathula Kaanthaam LALITHAMM
                       (HiraNmayeem Lakshmeem Sadhaa Bhajaami )

The eduppu for this krithi is Suddha Daivatha Svaram for which 
this Ragam is famous. In the spirit of Sri Suktha Vakhyams,
" HiranyavarNaam Harineem Suvarna Rajathasrajaam ", 
Dikshitar hails her in Pallavi as" HirNmayeem Lakshmeem ".
Sri Suktham visualizes Herwith golden hue and adorned with jewelery 
made of Gold and Silver (Sarvaalankhaara Bhooshithai ). 
Dikshitar visulized Her as being decked in Gold(Svarna Mayam/
HiraNmayee)  , since his intent was to relate to his wife's
 desire for the acquisition of  a large quantity of Golden  Jewelery.
He says that he always meditates on  Maha Lakshmi as HiraNmayee
(HiraNmayeem Lakshmeem Sadhaa Bhajaami ) .

In the next line of the Pallavi, He expresses his resolve ( Heena
Maanava Aasrayam Thyajaami) that he will not approach 
wealthy ones, praise those and seek his fortune from those
lowly ones. He states that he rejects that route to acquire
wealth to please his wife's cravings for gold. .

In Anupallavi, He salutes Maha Lakshmi"s  place of birth ,
Her Divya mangala Vigraham and Her Divya AabharaNams.
He points out that the riches obtained with Her blessings are
not of a perishable nature ( Chira Tara Sampath Pradhaam ).
He recognizes Her place of birth as the milky ocean
(Ksheeraambhudhi Tanayaam ) and salutes Her as 
the daughter of the milky ocean. 

He praised next her TENDER  feet that are soft like a 
young, green  shoot of plant ( Harineem Charana Kisalayaam ).
Her place of rest is the chest (Vaksha sthalam ) of 
Sriman Naarayana . Her tender feet with the red dye
(MaruthaaNi  or Red sandal wood paste ) rub on the 
chest region of Her Lord and leave a red hue as 
visualized by Swami Desikan:"PoorNam Teja: 
Spurathi Bhavathi Paadha Laakshaa--
rasaangam ". Dikshitar praised those tender feet ,
which are like soft petals of Lotus. 

In the next salutation, Dikshitar visualized Her as 
holding the Bhoomandalam in one of Her Lotus 
hands (Kara kamala Dhrutha Kuvalayaam )
to represent Her duties to protect the 
Earth and its chetanaas and Achetanam. 

In the last salutation of the Anupallavi (Maragatha
Mani Valayaam ) and in the Charana Vaakyams ,
he enjoys and describes the DivyaabharaNams of
Maha Lakshmi, while She is seated in Her throne at
Her  Residence celebrated a s Chintaamani Graham
(Sritha Chintaamani Sadhanaam ) . 

Next, he explains as to where the Chintamani Graham is 
and states that it is in Sveta Dwipam  (Sveta Dwipa Vaasineem ).
He goes on to describe Her decorations and Jewelery 
through the words, " Abhja Maalineem, Maragatha Mani
Valayaam, Maanikya Aabharana Dharaam ". She is wearing
a garland made of Lotus flowers (Abhja Maalini ). She is 
adorned by a waist band (OttiyaaNam ) made of Emeralds
( Maragatha Mani Valayaam ). She is wearing AabharaNams
made up of  precious red stones ( Maanikya Aabharana
Dharaam ). 

During this time of holding court in Chintamani Graham,
Dikshitar says that Her face looked as though it was 
defeating the cool, full Moon  in its beauty (Seetha Kirana
Nibha Vadanaam ) . Her status as Jagan Maathaa and Her  
affection for Her  devotees -- both the Devaas and Humans--
and their Aaraadhanams are covered by Dikshitar through
the Charana Vakhyams " Bhootha Bhavya Vilasineem , Bhusura
Pujithaam Varaam Matharam ".

The rest of the Charana Vakhyaams are: " Guru Guha Maathula 
Kaanthaam, Varaam, Girijaam, Taam, Indiraam, Gita Vadhya 
Vinodhineem, Srikalaambhikaam , Paraam, Lalithaam , 
HiraNmayeem , Lakshmeem sadhaa bhajaami ". He recognizes 
Her as the wife of the uncle of Murugan . He describes Her as 
being inspired by Sama Gaana Music and the  music generated  
 by various   instruments like VeeNaa, VeNu , Mrudhangam
et al. He bows before Her giving Darsanam to him in the forms 
of Jagadhambhikai, Lalithaambhikai  and with the Kalaas of 
Sri Devi. He states that he worships that golden-hued 
Maha Lakshmi always. 

In the next posting, I will cover the Krithi set in the Uphanga  Rakthi
ragam known as Madhava Manohari (Maha Lakshmi Karunaa rasa 
Lahari ).

Oppiliappan Koil Varadachari Sadagopan