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thoo nilA muRRam - part 3 - "sengan odu mAl thiru mArbA"

From: Sampath Rengarajan (
Date: Wed May 19 1999 - 05:08:31 PDT

Dear bAgawathAs,

In the previous part we discussed very briefly on "engaL perumAL".
The previous pAsuram ended with the word "engaL  pirAn"  on  thiru
atthiyoor  perumAL.   This  pAsuram  start  with  the  word  engaL
"perumAn".  One  observation   the   4000  researchers  and  tamil
scholars have made is that the word "perumAL" is rare  to  be seen
in the entire 4000 pasurams.  Such  word  is  used  here  for  our
Sri ArAvaumdhan (even here it is used as perumAN and not perumAL).

       Going to the next word that catches out eye in this pAsuram,
as  per  our  Sri  PV  Pillai,   this    particular    address  as
"thiru mArbA" (this pAsuram)  is referring to the poorva kaNdam of
dwayArttham. Sri AppuLLai delivered a more comprehensive vyAkyAnam
for this pAsuram combining all these. He delivered that, "in order
to become "engaL perumAN" you chose  to  descend  down  to  "thiru
kudanthai" and rested on  thiru  anantha  AzhwAn  (AdisEshan)". By
saying  so it is implied that our Lord has to come to this holiest
of all the holy cities thirukudanthai to earn his paratthuvam.

This reminds us  of Sri Battar's verse  "vEdhAnthAs thathvasinthAm
murabidurasi yath  pAdha sinhaistharanthi" ie., vEdhAnthAs see the
holy feet of pirAtti  in his thiru mArbu or chest  and  only  then
do a nirnanayam or  validation that HE is the param poruL  or  the
para thatthuvam. vEdhas also declare HIM as Sri Lakshmi nAyakan or
harischathE  lakshmicha bandhyow"  (sri  purusha  sookttham).  His
(Sri Amudhan's) paratthuvam  of  Sri  ArA Amudhan  is  once  again
emphasised  by  the   reference  to  His  chengan.

        This sengan is referred to Sri  Arangan   and  many  other
lords on  bOga sayanam.  But this utterance is the   most suitable
reference only for Sri ArAvaudhan and NONE else.

   It is perumAL utthama lakshaNam that is cited when His eyes are
referred   as  "sengan".  Many reference have  been  made  on this
"sengan" of the  Lord in  both  sanskrit  and  tamil usages. Sarva
Utthaman means He is the one who is superior to everyone. When the
Lord is referred as the one with "sengan", His  saravEswara thuvam
is indicated. In this  pAsuram  "sengan  odu mAl"  of Sri  Amudhan
refers to His sarva swAmitthuvam. The word "thiru mArbA" means the
one who has Sri  or "thiru"  in His  "mArbu"  or  chest.  When the
Lord is addresses as "thiru mArbA", it indicates that thiru or Sri
is  the  "root cause" or purushAkAram for His natural sowlabyam to
take effect such that HE can come  to   thiru   kudanthai  and  be
available to all  of  us  simply  to  attain  us  (instead  of  we
attempting to attain HIM, in thiru kudanthai He has  come  down to
specifically attain us !!)  and keep us as his bhakthALS for ever.

        When Sri ANDAL refers to  "chengan"  one  can  also assume
that   she   is   actually   referring  to  her most adorable hero
Sri Amudhan. This is due to one simple and BIG reason.  While  all
the other Lords on "bOga sayanam" are supposedly  in  "sayanam" or
"kaLLa  nitthirai" (verse 2 thiru pAvai) Sri Amudhan is looking at
us, looking at you, looked at SriANDAL and AzwArs in his utthAyana
sayanam. No where in the 108 DD you can see this "WIDE  OPEN eyes"
looking into you one on one, piercing your heart and soul and make
them melt down and wander pouring all around as if  a  water  when
poured  will travel  in  all  directions on a plain floor or plain

If I say it tamil,  "Vanthirunthu than vadivazhagai  kAtti  kaNNAl
nammai AtkoLvAn. minnal pOl oru thERippu,  Nam nechin ullukkul oRu
ooduruval. vanthiruppOrukku veRum kal nechAga irnuthAlum avar tham
eeram kasivAre em perumAn than nOkkilE".  HE  has  come  to  thiru
kudanthai to show HIS beauty or sowntharyam to us  and  to capture
all  our hearts and souls. His eyes when looked at, for a fraction
of  a  second  one feel that a lightening struck them in their eye.
Such  a sparkling  sight  for a moment. Then ther is a piercing in
our heart that takes  place by HIS very sight. At  this  moment if
one who  is  present  there  is a  non  believer or even  a  tough
hearted person  as similar to a hard rock formed stone, the pocket
of water or dampness or "eera patham" stored inside such hard rock
stone  will also  ooze  out due to the  very sight of Sri Amudahn.
May be this is the  reason  that  Sri  thiru  pAn AzhwAr ended his
pathigam on Sri Arangan by invoking Sri Amudhan,  saying  that "en
amudhinai kaNda kaNgaL maRRa onRinai kAnAthE". ie Having seen  Sri
Amudhan's eyes (in Sri Arangan) I shall not see anything else  for
ever"  and  vanished  into  Sri Arangan.

        One can see  and  tell if the eye is "chengan" or not only
when  they  are  open.  And  such  is  possible only here in thiru
kudanthai utthAyana   sayaNam.  ie., perumAL  has  risen  from His
serpant bed in response  to  Sri  thiru  mazhisai  AzhwAr  and  is
looking at us with His head lifted up and eyes opened.  Hence  any
reference to  chengan elsewhre  in  4000 on  bOga   sayana perumAL
must be directed to our Sri ArAvamudhan.

Sri kOmaLa vaLLi thAyAr samEtha Sri Oppiliappan thiruvadikaLE saraNam
Sampath Rengarajan
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