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SrI vishNu sahasranAmam - Slokam 62 - Part 2.

From: Narasimhan Krishnamachari (
Date: Fri Oct 20 2000 - 08:14:11 PDT

             SrI vishNu sahasranAmam - Slokam 62 - Part 2.

587. sannyAsa-kRt - a) He Who cuts asunder the bonds when desires are
b) The Institutor of the samnyAsa ASrama for the attainment of moksha.
c) He Who shows the path of SaraNAgati to His devotee.

Om sannyAsa-kRte namah.

a) SrI BhaTTar interprets this nAma in relation to the previous nAma,
and explains how bhagavAn treats those with the affliction of the
bondage of samsAra.  "sAttvikena sanyAsena rajas-tamasau kRtanti iti
sannyAsa-kRt - He who cuts the bonds in the form of rajo and tamo
guNa-s in those who perform all their acts in a disinterested manner
with a spirit of renunciation of desire for the fruit.  Another name
for this is also sAttvika-tyAga - The abandonment of all the fruits of
any action we perform, and assignment of these benefits to Him and Him
alone;  in other words, every act that we perform should be for His
benefit and His pleasure.  This is the gist of karma yoga that is
enunciated in the gItA.  The word san-nYasa here signifies surrender of
the burden to the Master, and this surrender alone is the remedy for

SrI BhaTTar gives reference to the Sruti - "vedAna vij~nAna
suniScitArthAs-sanyAsa yogAt parimucyanti sarve  |  te brahma loke tu
parAntakAle parAmRtat parimucyanti sarve |" - Those who have acquired
the true knowledge of tattva, hita and purushArtha through the study of
the upanishads, do yoga by doing acts renouncing the desire for fruits
and giving up the idea that they are the chief agents of the acts.  By
this process their minds become pure and they practice bhakti yoga.  
At the end of their last body they attain the brahman and become free
from all karma. 

b) SrI Samkara vyAkhyAnam is "mokshArtham caturtham ASramam kRtavAn iti
snanyAsa-kRt" - He Who instituted the fourth ASrama of samnyAsa for the
attainment of moksha.
 c) SrI rAdhAkRshNa SAstri brings out the point that while samnyAsa -
the surrendering of the burden for our acts and the fruits thereof to
Him - is the only means for relieve from samsAra, it is also He alone
who shows this path of samnyAsa to His devotee;  in other words, He is
the One who leads His devotee to perform samnyAsa.   SrI kRshNa datta
bhAradvAj echoes this when he gives the following interpretation for
the nAma - "samyak nyAso nikshepah samnyAsah shad-vidha SaraNAgateh
ekatamam a~ngam Atma nikshepaNAm adheyam |  tam karoti draDhayati
bhakta-hRdaye iti samnyAsa-kRt.  Thus, bhagavAn is samnyAsa-kRt in the
sense that He is the One who blesses His devotee so that He performs
the act of surrender or saraNAgati.   He is also the One who gives the
needed qualifications to those who undertake the samnyAsa ASrama - SrI

d) The dharma cakram writer brings out the importance of leading a life
devoid of attachment caused by the indriya-s.  He gives the analogy of
a child forming in the mother's womb, which has to give up the mother's
womb at the appropriate time if it were to live.   Similarly, the jIva
has to give up the life dominated and controlled by the indriya-s if it
is to evolve to a higher level than to be part of the cycle of samsAra.
 This act of being relieved from the negative guNa-s of prakRti viz.
rajas and tamas is samnyAsa.  The current nAma emphasizes the
importance of leading a life of detachment and renunciation. 

588. Samah - a) He Who instructs on how to control anger etc.
		b) He who instructs that control of mind is the principal dharma for
		c) He who controls all beings, including during pralaya.
		d) He Who has absolute control of mind - He Whose nature is Calmness.
		e) He who puts an end to the darkness in His devotees' mind.

Om SamAya namah.

The root from which the word is derived is Samu - upaSame -  to grow
calm, to put an end, to stop (note the link to SAnti).  So the meaning
is - One who puts an end to, One who quiets down or calms down, etc. 
Thus, the interpretations are related to:  He puts an end to qualities
like tamas in His devotees, He puts an end to all things at the time of
pralaya, He gives instructions on how to calm down the mind, He
controls all beings, etc.  SrI satyadevo vAsishTha observes that by
meditating on this quality of bhagavAn, the person who meditates will
himself become quieted down in his mind, and attain SAnti. 

a) SrI BhaTTar continues the link with his interpretation for the
previous nAma, and interprets this nAma as referring to bhagavAn being
the Instructor of how to control the desire, anger, fear etc.   He
gives reference to the gItA 5.29, where bhagavAn tells us that He is
the real enjoyer of the fruits of all sacrifices and austerities -
bhoktAram yaj~na tapasAm sarvaloka maheSvaram  |  suhRdam sarva
bhUtAnAm j~nAtvA mAm Santim Rcchati  ||

b) SrI Samkara ties the interpretation to his interpretation of the
previous nAma as referring to the samnyAsa ASrama, and indicates that
bhagavAn is the instructor of the rule of Sama or control of the mind
for the samnyAsin, and he quotes the smRti - yatInAm praSamo dharmo
niyamo vanavAsinAm   |  dAnameva gRhastAnAm SuSrUshA brahmacAriNAm  || 

c) He also gives the alternate interpretation - sarva bhUtAnAm Samayita
iti Samah - He controls all the beings.   SrI anantakRshNa SAstry
interprets this as referring  to His quieting or calming down
everything during the pralaya.

d) SrI cinmayAnanda gives the interpretation that bhagavAn Himself is
the embodiment of calmness, and so He is called Sama Himself.

The dharma cakram writer elaborates on how the ancient traditional
system ensured that this control of the mind was built into the duties
of all the four ASrama-s.  In the brahmacarya stage, practices such as
getting up early in the morning, taking a cold bath, chanting veda-s,
performing the mantra japam, serving the guru, and being kept active
throughout the course of the day, was part of the training, and so the
control of the mind was constantly  inculcated.  Similarly, the gRhasta
was supposed to involve himself actively in performing religious rites
such as yaj~na-s etc.,  which kept him involved in mind control through
involvement in these activities.  Similar discipline applies to the
vAnaprastha and samnyAsa ASrama-s.  The current nAma reveals to us that
control of the mind and channeling of the mind towards acts that please
Him should be our goal in life. 

e) SrI satyadevo vAsishTha interprets Samah  to mean that bhagavAn puts
an end to the darkness in us - tamobhavAni kAryANi Samayati

589. SAntah - He whose mind is always tranquil.

Om SAntAya namah.

SrI BhaTTar comments that even though bhagavAn's greatness is such that
it can express itself like a rising ocean,  He chooses to be tranquil
like a calm and waveless ocean.  A poet has said of sage vyAsa:  His
tranquillity is such that even the wild animals become tranquil at his
very sight.   It can also be said that in
spite of all the oceans of apacAra-s that all of us commit, which can
justifiably make Him boil with anger at our deeds, He still keep
Himself tranquil and always willing to forgive us.  

SrI Samkara's vyAkhyAnam is that bhagavAn is peaceful because He is
completely unattached to the sense world - "nishkalam, nishkriyam,
Santam" - SvetAsvatara. 6.19.   SrI rAdhAkRshNa SAstri  gives the
additional reference to praSna upanishad 7.5 - SAntam ajaram amRtam.  

The dharma cakram writer observes that the more one gets involves in
the desire for material objects, the more one gets lack of peace of
mind.  The more one draws one's interests inward, the more one finds
peace.  Thus control of the mind is the path to attaining peace.  The
more one meditates on this mantra which represents the guNa of
tranquillity in bhagavAn, the more our mind will become tranquil. 

590. nishThA - a) The object of concentration. 
		b) The stable Abode of all during pralaya.

Om nishThAyai namah.  

a) nishThA essentially means a pivot, firm support.   SrI BhaTTar's
vyAkhyAnam for the nAma is "vyutthita cittaih SubhASrayabhUte asmin
nishThIyate iti nishThA" - Those who have achieved a deep level of
concentration have Him and His body as the object of their meditation. 
 The root from which the word is derived is shThA (sthA) - gati nvRttau
- to stand, to wait, to be at hand etc.    SrI kRshNadatta bhAradvAj
gives the derivation of this nAma as - niyatam sthAnam ni-shThAnam
svajanakAmAnAm iti nishThA - He is the firmly established abode as the
object of desire of the devotees.   SrI v.v. rAmAnujan gives refers to
peria tirumozhi 4.9.2 - Sindai tannuL nI~ngAdu irunda tiru.

b) SrI Samkara gives the interpretation that He is the stable final
Abode for all the beings during pralaya - pralaye nitarAm tatraiva
tishThanti bhUtAni iti nishThA.   

c) SrI satyadevo vAsishTha comments that while bhagavAn has permeated
everything in this world and makes everything else go, He Himself is
fixed.  Just as a worm inside a stone cannot move the stone while the
worm itself keeps moving, the rest of the world keeps moving within Him
and because of Him, but He is fixed - nishThA.   
The dharma cakram writer observes that the significance of the nAma
lies in realizing the importance of having our thoughts centered and
anchored on bhagavan-nAma-dhyAnam.    The more we let it wander in
search of worldly objects, the more we will be plagued by needless and
meaningless fears and confusion on the real purpose of our existence,
and the more we will slip and fall from that great Object whom we
should attain in order to be relieved of the cycle of samsAra.  We
should meditate on Him with "nishThA" or firmness.

591. SAntih - a) Peace.
	b) The object of meditation
	c) The Ultimate Support.

Om SAntaye namah.

a) When a devotee has attained the perfect calm in the final state of
meditation, this state is called samAdhi.  At that stage, the Lord
makes the devotee enjoy Him and Him alone, and forget all else
including the self, other activities, interests, etc.  This quietening
of all the person's interests and activities is called SAnti, which is
granted only by the Lord.  Those who have abandoned everything else
find peace in Him who is the Ultimate Peace.   So He is called SAntih. 
 This is the final stage of perfect meditation. 

SrI v.v. rAmAnujan quotes from the Sruti - yatra nAnyat paSyati nAnyat
SruNoti… tad bhUmA - when you enjoy Him and His greatness, nothing else
is seen or heard or enjoyed.   He also quotes from the prabandham -
ippAl kai vaLaiyum mEgalaiyum kANEn, kaNDEn ghana magarak kuzhai
iraNDum nAngu tOLum (tiru neDuntANDagam 22) - When tiruma~ngai AzhvAr
had Him in his mind, he did not remember anything about himself;  he
only saw bhagavAn and His beauty, His AbharaNams, etc.  SrI rAdhAkRshNa
Sastri gives reference to kaThopanishad 2.2.13 - teshAm SAntih SAsvatI
na itareshAm - Permanent Peace is to be found in Him and nowhere else. 

SrI Samkara vyAkhyAnam is that bhagavAn is devoid of all avidyA-s, and
so He is the personification of the peace that results from the total
absence of avidyA in Him.   SrI cinmayAnanda substitutes avidyA with
desire.  Agitations are caused by desire, and since bhagavAn is
All-Full and has no desire to be fulfilled, there is no agitation in
Him and He is thus Peace itself.  

b) SrI kRshNadatta bhAradvAj explains the meaning based on the root
Sama - Alocane - to look at, and explains the nAma as indicating that
He is the object of meditation of the devotees - bhaktAnAm Alocana
vishayatvAt SAntih.  

c) SrI satyadevo vAsishTha gives the interpretation based on Sam-
upaSame - to grow calm, to put an end to, to stop - and interprets the
nAma on the basis of the Sruti - dyauh SAntih antariksham SAntih
pRthivI SAntih Apah SAntih …….. .   Here the word SAnti can be
interpreted as each level supporting the previous level.  Everything
else is ultimately supported by Him and ends in Him, and so He is
called SAntih.   

592. parAyaNam -  a) The Ultimate Means.
		b) The Best Goal.
		c) He Who has the Best Abode to seek.

Om parAyaNAya namah.

The first interpretation is that He is the Means, and the second one is
that He is the End.  Both are  appropriate since bhagavAn is really
both the upAya and upeya. 

a) Param ayanam parAyaNam. The root from which the word "ayanam" is
derived here is ay- gatau - to go. He is the best means for attaining
Him, since the highest bhakti that is needed for attaining Him is
acquired from Him alone. SrI BhaTTar gives reference to the gItA,
18.53-54, in support of the interpretation:    …. nir-mamah SAnto
brahma-bhUtAya kalpate ||  brahma-bhUtah prasannAtmA na Socati na
kAnkshati  |  samah sarveshu bhUteshu mad-bhaktim labhate parAm  || ,

Also we have in Slokam 11.54 - bhaktyA tu ananyayA Sakya aham evam
vidho arjuna |  j~nAtum drashTum ca tattvena praveshTum ca parantapa 

In amarakOSam, ayanam is given as a term that is equivalent in meaning
to mArga, or path -ayante anena iti ayanam.  

b)  SrI Samkara gives the interpretation that He is the best goal to
aim for, since this way one is assured that there is no return to
samsAra.  SrI rAdhAkRshNa SAstri refers us to the words "paramam yah
parAyANam" which occur in the introductory part of sahasranAmam.  

SrI cinmayAnanda give the quote from gItA 15-6 - yad gatvA na
nivartante tad dhAma paramam mama - He is the Supreme Goal, and there
is no return to samsAra after reaching Him.

SrI BhaTTar has interpreted the word parAyaNam in the introduction
involving the question from yudhishThira - "kim ekam daivtam loke, kim
vA'pyekam parAyaNam" - as referring to the end (upeya) in his
vyaAkhyAnam to the introduction.  (paramam upeyam pRccati - kim vA'pi
ekam parAyaNam iti; ayanam - prApyam; evam upeyam dvidhA pRshTam etc.
are extracts from his vyAkhyAnam to the Slokam kim ekam daivatam

c) SrI P. B. aNNa'ngarAcArya svAmi points out there an alternate pATham
is parAyaNah, which means that He is the One who has the best sthAnam -
the best place to offer - param ayanam yasya sah parAyaNam. 

SrI rAdhAkRshNa SAstri observes that the japa on "sannyAsa kRt Samah
SAnto nishThA SAntih parAyaNam" will bring peace to a disturbed and
agitated mind	.

The dharma cakram writer nicely contrasts the state we achieve when we
control our indriya-s and our mind, and the state we achieve when we
let the indriya-s and mind control us.  In the former case we reach the
state of no more birth in this world, and in the later we are back to
the cycle of samsAra.  When we perform any action, we should remember
that He is the doer and we are only His instrument.  This is how we can
elevate ourselves through karma yoga.  When we convert our desire for
worldly pleasures into a desire for Him instead, we elevate ourselves
through bhakti yoga.  When we realize the true nature of the self and
the distinction of the body and the mind, and realize that we are
subservient to Him and Him alone, we elevate ourselves through j~nAna
yoga.   Thus, it can be seen easily that He is the means for attaining

-dAsan kRshNamAcAryan


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