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Sri DehaLIsa Sthuthi --Part 5

From: V. Sadagopan (
Date: Sat Sep 13 1997 - 08:42:26 PDT

Dear Memebers of the Bahkthi group : 

The first verse of this Sthuthi consists of Swami 
Desikan's prayerful appeal to the presiding deity of 
ThirukkOvalUr ( ThirukkOilUr ) for his rakshaNam
(protection ) . Swami salutes the Lord , who measured 
the universes and the space beyond in His two strides .

Swami recollects that during His incarnation as 
the dwarf brahmachAri , the Lord asked for three 
steps of land as a gift and then expanded and 
measured the earth and space and made them His own .
The Maharishis , emperor MahA Bali , the dEvAs ,
BrahmA , SivA and all thsoe who witnessed the miracle 
of the Lord's sprading feet sweeping the expanses   
slauted Him as the prime cause behind the existence 
and functioning and the dissolution of the universe .

Our AchAryA points out to us that the Lord of such glory 
and power presides over this divya desam and blesses 
every one with parama purushArhtam and prays to Him 
to extend His net of protection to him as well .

The first slOkam containing the above thouhgts 
is as follows :

Vikramya yEna vijithAni jaganthi bhoomnA
   viswasya yam parama kaaraNam aamananthi I
visrANayan praNayinam vividhAn pumarthAn 
   GopthA sa mE bhavathu GopapurAdhirAja : II

The anvaya kramam flows this way :

Yena bhoomnA jaganthi vikramya vijithAni ,
Yam viswasya parama kAraNam aamananthi , 
praNayinAm vividhAn pumarthAn visrANayan ,
Sa: GopupurAdhirAja : mE GopthA bhavathu 

Sri D.Ramaswamy Iyengar"s translation brings 
beautifully the meaning of this verse . I will quote
his traslation for the verse and add my comments .

" May that Supreme Ruler (King ) of Gopapuri 
(KovalUr ) by whom the worlds were (stepped over)
measured and conquered , who is regarded as the ultimate
cause of the Universe , who bestows the various 
kinds of PurushArthAs on His devotees , May He be
my protector ! " .

In this slOkam set in the third person , Swami Desikan 
has three major themes in mind to slaute the greatness 
of the Lord of Gopapuri . The  first is  " Yena bhoomnA 
jaganthi vijithAni "  ; the second is " Yam viswasya parama
kAraNam aamananthi " and the third is (Ya: ) praNayinAm 
vividhAn pumarthAn visrANayan " . 


Appropriately enough , Swami Desikan starts with the 
word " Vikramya " to remind  us of the VikramaNam
(stride) of the Trivikraman of this divya desam . The Lord 
incarnated as VamanA on the SravaNa DvAdasi day 
in the aasramam of Sage Kasyapa and  his wife Athithi .
Sri NaarAyaNeeyam saLutes the birth of the Lord 
as VamanA in the 30th dasakam :


The moment he was born with sankam and chakram , he hid
His avathAra rahasyam and assumed the form of a brisk ,
dwarf brahmachAri ( patutamam vaturUpamAdhA : ) 
Thereafter , the brisk brahmachAri proceeded to the site of 
Maha Bali's yajnam . Under the mighty steps of this
BrahmachAri , the earth bent ( BhaarENa ghAm 
sannamayanpadhE padhE ) according to Srimadh
Bhagavatham . The appearnce of this extraordinary
celibiant at the Yajnam is further described by Srimadh
Bhagavatham through the following verse :

chathram sadhandam kamandalum 
vivEsa vibhradhdhayamEgavAtam I

mounchyA mEkalayA veetham upaveethAjinOttharam II

jatilam Vaamanam vipram maaNavakam HARIM II

This Hari NaarAyaNan dressed in the garb of a BrahmachAri
asking for Bikshai with his dhandam , umbrella , kamandalu ,
munji belt , jatai , upaveetham with the krishNajinam to hide 
the presence of inseparable MahA Lakshmi on His chest 
arrived and begged for three feet of land ( bhUmim pAdha 
traya parimithAm praarthayAmi ) . Inspite of the protestation of
his AchArya , MahA Bali granted the wish and poured water in 
the extended hands of the Kapata Vaaman to solemnize the deed .
What happened next is beautifully described by Sri NaarAyaNa 
Bhattadhiri :  

divyam rUpam tava cha tadhitham pasyathAm visvabhAjA-
mucchairucchairavrudhatheekruthya VISVAANDA BHAANDAM 

The little figure of Vaamana mUrthy set the brahmAndam as its
border and grew on and on instantaneously . One foot covered the
earth and measured it; the other foot stepped up and measured 
the aakasam and beyond . 

This VIKRAMANAM of the Trivikraman  celebrated by the 
Sri VishNu sahasra Naamam passage , 
'IsvarO vikrami dhanvI medhAvi vikrama krama: "
becomes the immediate object of attention of
Swami Desikan and becomes the first word of 
the first verse of this Sthuthi ( Vikramya ) .

That He conquered and reclaimed the Universe 
that is always His is referred to in the subsequent words:
" Vikramya yEna vijithAni Jaganthi " ( By whom the universe
was pervaded , measured and conquered ) .

What was the power behind such a conquest ?
What was the vidhyA used to achieve this superlative 
deed asks Swami Desikan next and answers with
one word , which forms the final word of the first 
paadham of this first slOkam of dEhaleesa Sthuthi .
That word is BHOOMNAA . This word has a profound
upanishadic significance and is very dear to
Achaarya RaamAnujA and occurs in ChandhOgya 
Upanishad as BhoomaadhikaraNa vidhyA .
We will cover the signinficance of this word 
pregnant with meaning to understand Swami
Desikan's meticulous choice of this word 
to salute the Anantha kalyANa guNaas 
of  dEhalIsA of ThirukkOvalUr .

Swami Desikan ThiruvadigaLE SaraNam 
Oppiliappan Koil VaradAchAri Sadagopan