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From: M K Sudarshan (sudarsan_at_batelco.com.bh)
Date: Sat Oct 05 1996 - 22:13:16 PDT

Sri LakshmiNrusumhaya Namaha.
Sri Vedanta Desika GuravE Namah.

Salutations to bhagavatas.

Vijay Triplicane's comments on "paripurna saranagathi" reminded me of
Draupadi's predicament as described by U.Ve.Mukkur Lakshminarasimhachariar
in one of his discourses I attended many years ago in Madras. 

Her modesty being outraged in the court of Dhritarashtra, her husbands
simply paralysed into inaction by a folly of their own making and even the
likes of Bhishma forsaking her, she instinctively turned her thoughts to
Krishna. It is said she prayed to him in utter desperation. The Lord didn't
show up. Meanwhile her disrobing in the assembly went on with no one to
raise a whisper of protest.

Finally the moment came when Draupadi's last vestige of modesty would be
whisked away even as she clung to the last piece of tattered fabric that
covered her noble self. She kept calling out pathetically for the Lord as
she thrashed about and grabbed at the last remnants of her fabric .There was
still no sign of the Lord.

She couldn't hold out any longer against her tormentors.

And then there was a moment of revelation in which she saw she was indeed a
truly and utterly helpless soul --- a moment of cosmic loneliness that fills
one with "holy terror".

It is said that it was only at such an elemental moment when Draupadi, in an
act of supreme renunciation just voluntarily let go off the one last piece
of fabric she believed was everything to her at that moment in life, and
made one last plaintive cry to the Lord to save her, did Krishna come to her
rescue.

I think there is indeed an experiential difference--- symbolised by the
fabric Draupadi clung to till the very last and which the Lord wanted her to
give up first as a condition for his rescue --- there is a difference
between a soul's renunciation of 'upaya' and 'paripurna saranagathi'. 

Sri LakshniNrusumhaya Namaha
Sri Vedanta Desika GuravE Namaha
Srimate Srivan Satagopa Sri Narayana Yateendra Maha Desikaya Namaha.

Most Humbly,

Sudarshan