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Sri Raamaashtakam -- Part 4 :Second Krithi

From: V. Sadagopan (75041.3037_at_compuserve.com)
Date: Sat Oct 19 1996 - 05:47:43 PDT

OCTOBER 19, 96-- SEVENTH DAY OF NAVARATHRI
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In  a brilliant piece set in Raga Naarayana Gowlai
and TaaLam Aadhi, Dikshitar has a SampoorNa 
Ramaayana Krithi . He salutes the various incidents
described by Srimad RamaayaNam from the birth of
Rama to the destruction of RavaNaa.

The svarupam of this  ragam  associatied with the 
sacred namam of Sriman NarayaNaa is not much in vogue today 
in concerts due to the ascendance of ragas Kedara Gowlai and 
Surutti. Dikshithar however made sure that the true from of
this sacred Raga is captured in this Krithi . 

PALLAVI : SRI RAMAM RAVIKULAABDHI SOMAM 
SRITHAKALPA BHUROOHAM BAJEHAM 

ANUPALLAVI : DHEERAAGRAGANYAM VARENYAM
DHEENA JANAADHAARAM RAGHUVEERAM
NARADHAATHI SANNUDHA RAAMAYANA
PAARAYANA MUDHITHA NAARAAYANAM (SRI RAMAM ) 

CHARANAM : DASRATHAATHMAJAM  LAKSHMANAAGRAJAM 
DHANAVA KULA  BHEEKARAM SRIKARAM 
KUSA LAVA THAATHAM SITOHBHEDHAM 
KUVALAYA NAYANAM SUDHARBHA SAYANAM
SUSARA CHAPA PAANIM SUDHIMANIM 
SUNRUTHA BHASHAM GURUGUHA THOSHAM 
DASA VADHANA BHANJANAM NIRANJANAM
DHAANA  NIDHIM DAYAA RASA JALA NIDHIM (SRI RAMAM ) 

(Meaning ) : May I have blessings of meditaing on Sri Rama 
of limitless auspicious qualities and subha Charitam ! He is 
the moon that causes the tides of Surya Kulam to rise with 
Joy . He is like a  kalpaka tree to his devotees in his boon-granting
power. He is the first among the valorous  ones ! He is the 
anaatha Rakshakan, who comes quickly to the rescue of those,
who seek his refuge . He is the  crown jewel of the dynasty of 
Raghu Kulam . He is the Sriman Narayanan , who accepts 
with delight the recitation of Srimad Ramayanam by Rama Bhakthas ,
a tradition that goes back to sage Naarada. He is the son of Dasaratha 
(Daasarathi ) and the eleder brother of Lakshmana . He is the father of 
Kusa and Lava , who sung Ramayana to the accompaniment of Vina 
in his court. He is the one , who is offering his Darsanam as 
Sita Sametha Raman in Pattabhisheka Kolam . He is the destroyer 
of the evil Asuraas . He has the eyes that are like the blue lotus
that greets the moon with joy. He laid on the sacred grass at 
ThiruppullaaNi and requested the assistance of Samudra Rajan 
for completing his avathara mission (ie), RavaNa Samhaaram .
He is the mighty Kodhanda Raman known for his beautiful
hand holding the mighty bow of Kodhandam. He is the essence of 
Jnana , which shines as the brilliant lamp on the hill . He is a Satya  seela
(Dharmo Vigrahavaan ) and the embodiment of righteousness . 
He is the ocean of mercy and the greatest benefactor through 
his generosity of boons to devotees . May this Lord of limitless,
auspicious GuNaas be the object of my meditation !  

V.Sadagopan  

P.S : This krithi is a Naama Kusumaanjali to Sri Rama by Dikshitar .
He installs Sri Rama on a golden throne in his heart and meditates
upon the legendary incidents described by Sage Valmiki . With Prema Bhakthi , 
Dikshitar offers the ambrosia of Svara and sahityam . He travels on the royal
road (Raja Margam ) of Rama Bhakthi like many that preceded him such as 
sages Naradaa , Valmiki and his students Kusa and Lava and offers 
his Nada Naivedyam to Sri Rama . Like Saint Thyagaraja , he seems to 
point out that the blessings of meditation on Sri Rama is the real blessing 
to be coveted by us whole heartedly . He seems to say like Saint Thyagaraja
in his Kannada Krithi " Ideh Bhagayamu gaaka -yemi yunnadhiraa! Rama !"
( This alone is the real blessedness to be sought after - to meditate
incessantly your holy feet with the whole heart ) .