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Ramaashtaka Krithis of Sri Dikshithar --Third Krithi

From: V. Sadagopan (75041.3037_at_compuserve.com)
Date: Mon Oct 28 1996 - 19:19:19 PST

MAANJI RAAGA KRITHI
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Sri Dikshithar composed a beautiful krithi in Ragam
Maanji , which is a janya ragam of Nata Bhairavi . There are a 
lot of ideas here that recall the Krithis of a great Rama Bhaktha,
who was  a contemproary of Sri Dikshithar by the well known name 
of Thyagaraja SwamigaL . 

The Maanji  krithi is a tribute to the bewitching beauty of Sri Rama 
and reminds one of the many krithis of Saint Thyagaraja 
such as " Mohana Ramaa mukhajita Somaa " in Ragam Mohanam,
Sundaratara Deham Vandeham Raamam " in ragam PanthuvaraaLi , 
" Kana Kana Ruchi tara " in Ragam VaraaLi , " Naapaali Sri Rama Bhupaalaka 
Sthoma " in Navaros Ragam , where he salutes the matchless beauty of
Sri Rama as more than that of crores of Manmatha : " Koti
Manmathulaina Saatigaa Nee Sogasu , Naadiunnithi Madhini medi
Sri Raamaa" . Sri Dikshitar sings about this Athi LaavaNya Raman
in his Maanji Krithi . The Sahitya VaakyangaL are as follows : 

PALLAVI : RAMACHANDRENA SAMRAKSHITHOHAM (SITAA)

ANUPALLAVI : RAMAA BHARATHEE GOWREE RAMANA SVARUPENA SRI

CHARANAM : KAAMAKOTI SUNDARENA KAMANEEYA KANTHARENA
KOMALA GANA SHYAAMENA KODHANDARAAMENA
MAAMAKA HRUDHAYA STHITENA MAARUTHI GITAAMRUTENA
MAANJI MANI MANDITHA MADH GURUGIHA MAANITHENA (SRI SITAA)

In Pallavi , Sri Dikshitar reveals that he is well protected by the 
Dayaasaagaran , who has taken the vow to protect every one,
who sought the refuge of His lotus feet once .

In Anupallavi , Sri Dikshitar touches on the thoughts made 
famous by Sadguru Thyagaraja swamigal in his krithis such 
as " Paramaathmudu " in raga vagadhEswari , " Mummurthulu
Gumigoodi " in Raga AtaaNa , "Dvaitamu Sukhamaa " in Ragam
Reethigowlai . 

In these Krithis, Sadguru points out that Sri Rama, 
his Ishta Daivam sports in the form of Trimurthys and far  exceeds 
them in KalyaNa guNaas . He points out that Sri Ramachandra 
is the Antharyaami Brahman empowering the trimurthys and 
bidding them to carry out their duties as creator, protector 
and destroyer . After relegating all these uninteresting works to
the Trimurthys , Sri Rama  according to Thyagaraja concentrates 
on His Varada or Boon giving aspect . 
  
In the Ritigowali krithi , Sadguru states that Sri Rama 
is sporting in this universe as gods like Vishnu , Brahma and Siva.
In the Vagadheeswari song , he salutes Sri Rama as the Paramathma,
who shines as the antharyaami of  Hari , Hara and Devas 
(Hariyata Haradata surulata --akhilaanda kotilata yantharilO 
Paramaathmudu velagu mucchata bhaaga telusukorE ) . 

In  his Ataanaa krithi , " Mummurthulu " , Saint of Thiruvaiaaru
says  that the Trimurthys were dumbfounded when they found that 
Sri Rama's guNaas outweighed their own on weighing. They sang
His praise as the supreme among them and were at a loss to understand
how a mere son of a king could possess those guNaas. 

Sri Dikshitar tersely summarizes the above thoughts of Saint 
Thyagaraja ,when he salutes in Anupallavi : " Ramaa Bharathee 
Gowree RamaNa svarupeNa Sri RamachandreNa Samrakshithoham ".
Ramaa RamaNan is Vishnu; Bharathi RamaNan is Brahma and 
Gowree RamaNan is Siva . Sri Dikshitar recognizes Sri Rama as the 
one who has the svarupam of Trimurthys through his residence 
in them as Antharyaami . 

In the charana Vaakyams , Sri Dikshitar eulogizes the beauty of 
Sri Rama as being  superior to crores of Manmathaas . The effulgence
of this Mega SyamaLa murthy sporting His mighty Kodhandam in His
hand captivates Sri Dikshitar. He states that the majestic mien of Sri Rama
is  enshrined in his heart. Sri Dikshitar also visualizes Sri Rama enjoying 
the nectar like VeeNaa music of His dear devotee, Hanumaan. 

Sri Dikshitar places his raga Mudra and the composer's mudra in the 
last line of Charana Vaakyam this way : " Maanji MaNi manditha madh
Guruguha Maanithena Sri Sita Ramachandrena Samrakshithoham " .
He pays tribute to his Upaasanaa  murthy, Guru Guhan , the nephew of 
Sri Raama . He places his Guru Guhan in a Mantapam decorated with
the precious stones of Maanji ( Svarasthaana Devathais ) and states that 
SubrahmaNyan pays homage to His uncle  , Sri Sita Sametha Ramachandran.

I close this posting with two slokams of Sri Rama KarNaamrutham 
of a Kanchi Kamakoti Peetaathipathi :

SRIRAMACHANDRETHI SALAKSHMANETHI 
NEELOTHPALA SYAAMALA KOMALETHI I
AKOROSAYUKTHAA TVADHUNAIVA JIHVAA
SITAAPATEH RAAGHAVA RAAGHAVETHI II

VEDA VEDANTHAVEDYAAYA MEGASYAAMALA MURTHAYEH I
PUMSAAM MOHANARUPAAYA PUNYA SLOKAAYA MANGALAM II

Oppiliappan Koil Varadachari Sadagopan