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BhUtham and pEy AzhwArs : Birthday Tributes: part 3

From: Sadagopan (
Date: Sat Oct 31 1998 - 16:34:36 PST

October 30, 1998

Dear BhakthAs :We will conclude the series of
postings today on the Mudal AzhwArs .Please 
read it with the earlier postings on
Swami Sri Desikan's Sri DehaLIsa sthuthi,
where reference is made to many of the Paasurams 
of the Mudal AzhwArs .

Birth places and amsams 
BhuthatthAzhwAr was born inside a fragrant Maadhavi Pushpam
at Thirukkadanmallai divya desam , where Sthala sayana
PerumAl is the ArchA mUrthy . He is the amsam of GoumEdaki,
the gadhai of Sriman NaarAyaNA . Iypaasi avittam is his 
birth day . Today , it overlaps with Sathayam , the birth
star of pEy AzhwAr , who was born in modern day Myalpore ,
where the ancient sannadhi of Adhi Kesavap PerumAL is located.
In that sannidhi , there is a well and inside that well 
blossomed a red lilly flower and pEy incarnated inside 
that flower . pEy AzhwAr is the amsam of the sword(nandakam )
of the Lord . All the three AzhwArs are pushpa Jaathars 
and are therefore ayOnijars(not born out of 
human bodies ).

MangaLAsAsana sthalams 

Poygai performed mangalAsasanam for 7 ArchA mUrthys
of divya desams ; BhUtham and pEy saluted 13 and 15
ArchA murthys respectively .

BhUtham sang about the following divya desams :

(1) Atthigiri VaradarAjan (2)Srirangam 
(3) Thirukkadanmallai (4) Thirukkudanthai
(5) ThirukkOttiyUr    (6)ThirukkOvalUr
(7) Thiru TanjaimAmaNik Koil (8) Thirut taNNkAl
(9) Thiru Neermalai (10) Thirup paaDakam 
(11)Thirup paaRkadal (12)ThirumAlirumchOlai
and (13) ThiruvEnkatam .

pEy AzhwAr performed MangalAsAsanam at the following 
fifteen Divya desams :

(1) Thiru Attabhuyakaram (2) Atthigiri VaradarAjan 
(3) Srirangam (4) ThiruvallikkENi (5)ThirukkaDikai 
(6) Thirukkudanthai (7) ThirukkOttiyUr 
(8) Thirp paramapadham (9)Thirup paaDakam 
(10)Thirup paaRkadal (11) ThiruviNNagar 
(12) ThiruvehhA (13)ThiruvEnkatam 
(14) ThiruvELukkai and (15) ThirumAlirumchOlai .

BhuthatthAzhwAr's Sri Sookthi: Second ThiruvandhAthi
There are 100 beautiful passurams with great Bhagavadh
anubhavam in this Sri Sookthi . The three AzhwArs have
been linked to Para Bhakthi, Para Jn~Anam and Parama Bhakthi 
respectively . In reality , each of them had the good admixture 
of all the three types of Bhagavadh anubhavam .

For the sake of coherent linking , the  three AzhwArs 
distributed their Vaachika kaimkaryams . Poygai felt 
that the Lord has to be seen with the most magnificient 
external lamp and hence used the radiant Sun as the external 
lamp (ViLakku).BhUtham taught us that the inner radiance
of one's Jn~Anam has to be used to enjoy the  Lord and that 
the external ViLakku without Bhagavadh Kaamam (anbhu )
will not help to attain Bhagavadh Darsanam . Thus both 
the lights were lit and the beneficiary was pEy AzhwAr ,
who in his ecstasy declared " ThirukkanDEn , PonmEni 
KanDEn " .He Qualified the Lord as mahAlakshmi (Thiru)
samEtha NaarAyaNan ( Sriman NaarAyaNan )and performed 
his mangaLAsAsanam .

Poygai in his 86th pasuram of mudal ThiruvandhAdhi 
enjoyed the same sEvai of the Lord , the nir-vyAja suh*ruth,
with MahA Lakshmi and referred to his aanandhAnubhavam this way ,
while he stood squeezed with his fellow AzhwArs at 
the dEhaLi of MruganDu Maharishi's aasramam :
"neeyum ThirumahaLum ninRAyAl --" ( Oh My Lord ! What 
a BhAgyam to have your darsanam with your divine consort ,
here at the tight space of the rEzhi at ThirukkOvalUr !)

BhUtham salutes the divine consort , MahA Lakshmi 
as he experienced the divya darsanam of Sriman 
NaarAyaNan this way in his 60th pasuram of the 
Second ThriuvandhAthi : " Ohr uruvan allai oLi
uruvam ninn uruvam " Here the AzhwAr specifically
points out to the JyOthi of MahA Lakshmi , which
lights up the dark body of the Lord like a lightning
reveals the contour of the dark cloud of the rainy
season . Swami Desikan in his Sri Sthuthi followed 
this thought and declared that the divine couple 
have a unified , inseparable presence ( yEka sEshithvam )
and accept the havis (sacred offering ) of the AathmA
during the yaagam of Prapatthi TOGETHER .Therefore ,
Swami Desikan stated along the  lines of reasoning
shown by the Mudal AzhwArs and the subsequent AchAryAs 
rooted in Vedham that " sruthInAm bhaavArUDou 

This YekasEshithva Yogam of this divine couple 
is celebrated by pEy AazhwAr in the very first 
Paasuram of his Third ThiruvandhAdhi , where he 
breaks out in rapture over the darsana soubhAgyam 
of MahAlakshmi Sametha NaarAyaNan (Sriman NaarAyaNan ):
" Thiruk KaNDEn ponn mEni kaNDEn Thihazhum
arukkanaNI niRamum kaNDEn--" . Here pEy AzhwAr 
raptourously states that he has now seen Periya 
PirAtti , who is PurushakAram , UpAyam and upEyam 
shining radiantly from Her seat on the chest of
BhagavAn .Thus the vision of the three AzhwArs
is an unified one .

BhUtham stated that he lit the lamp of Jn~Anam 
to see the Lord ( Jn~AnacchuDar ViLakkERRinEN
NaaraNarkku --" ).In his 20th paasuram, BhUtham 
reveals that only those who reflect on Sriman 
NaarAyaNA at all the three sandhis and meditate upon
the true meanings of His thousand names will have
the blessed life leading to Moksham : 
" pazhi paavam kai ahaRRip palkAlum ninnai
vazhi vAzhvAr vAzhvArAm --".

BhUtham mentions to Sriman NaarAyaNA in his last
paasuram that the love he has for Him is boundless :
"yenRan aLavenRaal yaanudaya anbu ( yaanudaya
anbu yenn tann aLavu anRu) ".Here AzhwAr confesses
that his anbhu (prIthi) for the Lord is beyond
measurement and is limitless .

In his Second ThiruvandhAthi , BhUtham points
out that Bhagavadh prIthi is the most important element
and all the senses should be engaged in Bhagavadh
divya guNAnubhavam incessantly .He points out further 
that the Lord is Aasritha sulabhan and that we should
hail aloud His divya naamAs along with those of His
PirAtti and that kind of existence during one's life
here would surely help us attain Moksha Phalam 
and nithya KaimkaryAnugraham at Parama padham .

pEy AzhwAr's anubhavam in Third ThriuvandhAthi
pEy is revered in our sampradhAyam as the AchAryaa
of Thirumazhisai AzhwAr and ANDAL .Therefore , we 
need to say very little about the glory of this 
AzhwAr and his prabhandham .He starts paying his
tribute to Periya Piratti in the Vedhic way in
his first paasuram :HiraNya varNAm HariNIm " 
(ThirukkaNDEn ponn mEni kaNDEn ). In the second
paasuram , he acknowledges that in the light of
the golden , lightning like hue of Periya Piraatti ,
he has the ability now to have the darsana soubhAgyam 
of the sacred feet of the Moksha Pradhan , the Lord :
" inRE kazhal kaNDEn yEzh piRappum yAn aRutthEn".
I have seen today the holy feet of the Lord and thereby
cut asunder the cycles of births and deaths for good.
That is the nature of the anubhavam of pEy , the God-
intoxicated AzhwAr .

pEy AzhwAr celebrates the auspicious divya guNAs
of Sriman NaarAyaNA such as soulabhyam and souseelyam
through salutation to Him at a number of His divya dEsams :

viNNagaram vehhA viri thirai neer vEnkatam
maNNagaram maamAda vELukkai -maNNahattha 
tenn kudanthai tEnAr Thiruvarangam thennkOtti
tan kuDankai neerERRAn thAzhvu --62nd pasuram 

Here , ThiruviNNagaram ( Oppiliappan ),
ThiruvehhA (yathOkthakAri), ThiruvEnkatam 
(SrinivAsan ), vELukkai ( KaamAsikA narasimhan ) , 
Thirukkudanthai AarAvamudhan , Sri Ranganaathan
of Srirangam , ThirukkOshtiyUr Soumya NaarAyaNan 
are equated as identical in prowess and the Lord's 
ArchAs at these divya dEsams are eulogized .

In his final paasuram of his third ThiruvandhAthi ,
pEy AzhwAr concludes on the same note with which 
he started his prabhandham . He revealed in his 
first Paasuram that he saw Periya PirAtti ( Thiruk
kaNDEn ) ; he concluded his final (100th paasuram ) 
this way :"sArvu namakku yenRum --vaNDAMarai
nedumkaNN tEnamarum poo mEl Thiru " . 

Azhwar asserts here that Periya Piratti residing on 
the golden lotus is ALWAYS OUR REFUGE .She stays on 
the Lord's chest forever and does not leave that spot 
even for the fraction of a second (ahalahillEn iRayumenru
alarmEl mangai uRaihinRAL ). Until Her purushakAram 
comes our way , there is no way in which we will 
receive BhagavAn's anugraham .She is therefore 
" THE UPAAYAM ". She then stands together with
Her Lord as UpEyam as well . Therefore , Her 
grace protects us both before and after Prapatthi . 
pEy AzhwAr uses the word "vaNN " in his final 
pasuram, when describing the auspicious qualities
of Periya PirAtti . The word "VaNN" means the most
generous , compassionate Mother ( UdhAra SvarUpi).

Abhinava Desikan , Sri UttamUr Swami cites 
the intrepretation of ParAsara Bhattar in
connection with the UdhAra souseelyam of 
Periya Piraatti in his Sri Sooktham VyAkhyANam :

Eisvaryam akshara gathim paramam padham vaa
kasmaichith anjaliparam vahathE vidheerya I
asmai na kimchith uchitham krutham ithyathAmbha 
tvam lajjasE kathaya kOyam udhAra bhaava: II

After conferring MahA Isvaryam , the eternal
state in parama padham for the mere holding 
of our palms together before You , You , my 
dear Mother shyly wonder whether You have done 
enough for us.Such is Your unmatched generosity !

In the spirit of Sri Sooktham (the Khila Rk of 
Rg Vedham ) , pEy Azhwar rightfully starts 
his prabhandham with the declaration " ThirukkaNDEN "
and concludes his andhAthi with the concession ,
" taNN thuzhAi taazh varai maarbhan muyangum THIRU ".
Here " the anyOnya lakshyam " of the divya dampathis
is celebrated in the traditional vEdhic way .pEy
AzhwAr states that the Lord with His chest adorned by 
the cool TuLasi garlands can not function and go about 
performing His duties as SaraNAgatha Rakshakan without 
Her power . Hence , He tightly embraces Her on His 
chest so that She does not leave Him even for a fraction
of a second. She has no intention of leaving Him either
even for a vinADi . Such is the anyOnya Bhaandhavam
(relationship ) of our divine parents .

The three Mudal AzhwArs through their illustrious
andhAthis revealed the rahasyArthams behind Prapatthi 
and instructed us that Periya Piraatti goes before 
the Lord just as PraNavam precedes the Vedham .

Mudal AzhwAr ThiruvadigaLE SaraNam ,
Oppilaippan Koil VaradAchAri SadagOpan