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Re: Thyagaraja's song meaning needed

From: Sadagopan (
Date: Tue Oct 24 2000 - 16:25:36 PDT

Dear Sri ChandrasEkharan:

The Bilahari krithi of Saint ThyagarAjA
of interest to you ( Toli Janmamun a--)
is a beautiful one , which has been 
recorded by the Fluitsts , Sikkhil Sisters .

Telugu is not my Mother Tongue.
As a student Of Saint ThyagarAjA's krithis
and reverence for His Raama Bhakthi , I will
attempt however to translate this krithi .

Here are some preliminary comments :

This krithi was composed by Saint ThyagarAjA 
in a mood (SanchAri BhAvam ) of NirvEdham (Dejection , 
Despondency ) .In this mood and the allied moods
of Aathma GarhaNam and NaiccyAnusandhAnam 
(self depreciation ), a Bhakthan deplores 
his pitiable lot and in a plaintive mood (DhainyOkthi)
seeks the Lord's dayA  and karuNA katAksham .

In the mood of NirvEdam , Saint ThyagarAjA 
pleads with the Lord in Maarga HindhOLa Raagam :

" ChalamElarA ? SaakEtha Raama!"

Here the Saint asks the Lord :

Oh SaakEtha RaamA ! Why are you angry with Me ,
who has always adored You and has been singing about
Your LaavaNyam (beauty) , ananatha KalyANa GuNams with 
intense Bhakthi ? Where can I go , if You
turn away from Me? What can I do ( Yenthu BhOdhu nE ? 
nEmi sEyadhunu?). To whom can I complain 
about Your indifferrence ? Are you going to 
waste my time with Your jaalam ? I can not
stand this treatment ( TaaLa jAlara )!

In a Poorna ChandrikA raaga Krithi , he will
articulate His ananyagathithvam this way and
express his state of dejection :

thvAm vinA naanyathra jAnE Raama
thvAm vinA kO gathirjAnakI JaanE ?
--5th CharaNam of PurNa ChandrikA Krithi,
  Sri Raama Raama 

In a krithi set in Raagam Maanavathi (EvaritO nEdelpudu ?),
Saint ThyagrAja writhing over the agony of indifference
shown by the Lord cries out:

Oh GuNa Maya RaamA ! Oh Embodiment of all
auspicious qualities ! To whom shall I unburden my 
agony over your neglect ? My devout bhajanA sevai
has not produced the desired phalan --infact,
the opposite has happened .It is like the situation ,
when one tries to create a statue of VinAyakA
and ends up making a Monkey ( GaNa Naathu jEya gOraga,
gaDu Vaanarudai thIrEgA / Vinayakam prakurvANa:
prachayamAsa Vaaram in Sanskrit ).

In a Suddha BangaLA Raaga Krithi close
to the Krithi of interest to You in Raaga Bilahri ,
Saint ThyagarAja cries out:

" toli nE jEsina PoojA Phalamu
  delisEnu ; naapAli dhaivamaa "

(meaning of the entire krithi):

Oh Raamaa ! It must be the result of my 
defective worship in previous births that,
You have chosen to neglect me. here I am 
thinking and doting on You in several ways
and You show no response whatsoever.You have made
me the object of ridicule by my neighbors .
You have abandoned me to a place devoid of devotees of 
Yours and have cast my lot with people, whose only
concern is about the here and now .You have 
steadfastly not shown me  a way out of 
my miseries . Is this Fair ?

In Raaga SvarAvaLi , the Saint again expresses his
nirvEdham this way :

When My past KarmAs are like this ,and You
too are looking away from me ,there is no
purpose in blaming others (PrAraBhdha miDDuNDaga 
nOrula nana Bhani lEdhu neevuNDaga).

In the Kokiladhvani Raaga Krithi , " toli nEnu jEsina
poojA Phaala meelagO" , Sri ThyagarAja SwamigaL will
concede to Sri RaamA in a mood of nirvEdham that 
" This after all is the phalan of worshipping You 
in my previous births with all my heart".He will
lament and say : "Can I purchase with Money what I 
seek from You ?".He will throw himself in an abyss
of misery and declare: " Will my distress
over separation from You ever end ? " . He will
address the Lord as KaruNAkarA and then conclude 
the krithi this way : " You need not worry yourself 
over my lot. Perhaps , I began my role of bhakthA 
at an inauspicious time ".

With this lengthy introduction on
some of the NirvEdha Krithis of the Saint ,
I will focus on the Bilahari krithi of 
interest to you . The meaning follows your
note below:

At 07:14 PM 10/24/00 -0000, you wrote:
>Dear members,
> This is a request to members who are versed in Telugu. The 
>following is a krithi of Sri Thyagaraja. I request somebody to 
>post the translation for this.
>toli janmamuna.  rAga:  bilahari.  Jhampa tALA.  
>Composer: Tyagaraja
>   toli janmamuna jEyu duDuku telisenu rAma (toli)
>   phalamEmO (nI mahima) aracEti puNTi kaddamu valena (toli)
>   rAgi pairula centa ramyamau vari molaka rAjillu nErcu naTarA
>   nAga shayana tyAgarAja pApamutOnu nAma puNyamu celagunA nEnu (tOli)
>   Thank you very much.
>   Warm regards,
>   chandrasekaran.

Pallavi: Oh RaamachandrA ! I have now come to know
about the sins that I committed in my previous births
(toli Janmamuna jEyu-dhDuku delsEnu , Raama )

Anupallavi:The results of these sins are
very perceptible to me now. The situation is clear as 
a fruit in the palm of my hand. One does not need a
mirror to see the boil in one's palm ( phalamEmO 
yarachEthi pumDi kaddhamu valEnA ).

CharaNam : Will the superior Varahu SamphA crop
(fine paddy sprout) survive in the midst of raagi
crop? Will it be compatible with the Raagi crop?
No ! Similarly , the auspicious fruits resulting
from Your Naama SankIrthanam  will be destroyed 
by its association with the sins from poorva JanmAs .
The merit of Your holy name will be incompatible 
with the company of my sins !

AzhwArs and AchAryAs have experienced intensively
this mood of dejection and despondency (nirvEdham)over 
the Lord's indiffernce to them and have cried out 
in their Paasurams and slOkams . The sorrow over
the VislEsham ( separation form BhagavAn's company )
is the subject of ParakAla Naayaki's and ParAnkusa 
Naayaki's moving paasurams.

I will conclude this note with a summary of
nine main items that causes NirvEdham to
a Saadhakan/Bhakthan :

(1) SamSaram Causes artha-Kaama PraavaNyam
   ( Dominance of deep desire in  perishable riches 
     and dominance of the mind by worldly desires)

(2) As a result , people take refuge in alpa janams
( powerless humans) and Kshudhra Dhaivams ( lowly dEvathAs).
instead of performing SaraNAgathi at the sacred
feet of the SvabhAva-Seshi , Sriman NaarAyaNan .

(3)SamsAra dhOshams causes nirvEdham by immersing
one's thoughts in perishable joys of the world 
that interfere with the enjoyment of the imperishable
and eternal joy of Bhagavath GuNaanubhavam.

(4) SamsAra DhOshams causes nirvEdham by 
goading people to trespass BhagavAn's saasthraic 
commands (akruthya KaraNam ) and thus commit 
Bhagavath apachArams.

(5) SamsAra DhOshams prevents one from gaining
the fruits of Bhagavath anubhavam and Bhagavath
Kaimkaryam and creates internal and external obstacles
for a saadhakan .

(6) SamsAra DhOsham makes one think that they
are highly qualified to receive the Lord's 
anugraham , while being the abode of all dhOshams .

(7) Lets one stray from the Lord , who is
the embodiment of blemishless and limitless 
auspicious attributes (akhila hEya prathyanIka
anantha kalyANa GuNa SvarUpi).

(8) SamsAra dhOsham causes nirvEdham by 
confusing one's mind by encouraging one
to develop taste for Veda BhAhya Mathams and 
Kudhrushti mathams.

(9) SamsAra DhOsham induces nirvEdham by
driving us towards companionship with
asaththus (dhurjanams) and destroys 
sadh Buddhi (Mind known for its firm
attachmnet to the dhivya Dampathis and AchAryAs).

These are the reasons for the BhakthAs of
the Lord to cry out in NirvEdham and to seek
the mercy of the Lord just as in the NirvEdha 
Krithis of Saint ThyagarAjA .

namo NaarAyanaaya !
Oppiliappan Koil VaradAchAri SatakOpan   


           - SrImate rAmAnujAya namaH -
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