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Sri DehaLIsa Sthuthi --Part 7( second to Fourth SlOkam )

From: V. Sadagopan (
Date: Sun Sep 14 1997 - 19:27:31 PDT

Dear Members of the Bhakthi Group :

In the second slokam of Sri DehaLIsa sthuthi ,
Swami Desikan reveals the reason for his boldness
to eulogise the supreme Lord . He states that he was 
tongue-tied and awe-struck at the thought of the Lord's
matchless act of measuring the earth and the space with 
two of His strides and how at the same time He is readily
accessible to His devotees . Then , Swami Desikan says that 
he reflected upon the simplicity of the act of the Lord letting 
Himself crushed in the tight space of a dEhaLi and that 
thought made his tongue loosen and let him become 
almost " garrolous in His praise " . 

The second slokam set in a confessional tone begins 
to address the Lord in second prson directly :

dEhaLadhIswara tavEdrusamIswarathvam 
     thustUshathAm disathi gadhgadhikAnubhandham I
vAchAlayathyaTha cha maam kvachana kshapAyAm 
     kshAnthEna dhAntha kavimukhya vimardhanEna II

Anvya Kramam ) : DEhaLadhIswara !   tava yeedhrusam 
Iswarathvam thushtUshathAm gadhgadhikA anubhandham 
disathi . atha cha kvachana kshapAyAm kshAnthEna 
dhAntha kavi mukhya vimarthanEna maam vAchAlayathi .

The key words in this slOkam are kvachana KshapAyAm 
( on that one unforgettable night ) , vimarthanEna ( being pressed ) ,
dhAntha: ( those , who had achieved full control of their
IndriyAs ) and kavi mukhyA: ( pre-eminent poets in Tamil/
inn paadum kavigal according to NammAzhwAr and 
pAttukkuriya pazhayavar moovar according to Swami Desikan ) . 

(meaning ) :  O Supreme Lord of the dEhaLi ! The immensity of 
your superiority ( Lordship ) makes one attempting to 
eulogize You , dumb-struck and tongue-tied and makes them 
choke in  their efforts . Their voice thickens , the tears  swell 
in their eyes . Overpowered by the thought of your grandness ,
they are unable to continue with their intention to sing Your
praise . Yet , the very same matchless Iswarathvam of Yours
instead of keeping me as one of the silent majority makes me
garrulous in my efforts to praise You . The very same Iswarathvam
of yours displayed in the  small space of a dEhaLi on that 
unforgettable night  , when You permitted Yourself to be 
crushed by those three pre-eminent poets known for their 
total conquest of  their senses( IndriyAs ) . 

Swami Desikan explains here as to what emboldened him 
to approach the Supreme Lord of ThirukkOvalUr and venture
to sing about His anantha kalyANa guNAs . He says that the very
same supermacy ( Iswarathvam )  , which made others self-conscious
liberated him and his tongue .Swami states that the very 
thought of the Sowlabhyam of the Lord , which made Him mingle 
with His three dear devotees in a dEhaLi removed the 
inhibitions that he might have had like others engaged in
a similar  effort . The Lord , Who is VachamAgocharam 
( beyond words ) and aprAya manasA sa: ( unapproachable
even by the mind ) became accessible to Swami Desikan 
as a result of his reflections on His sowlabhyam.

 According to Sri D.Ramaswamy ayangaar , Swami Desikan
has explained his reasons for venturing the unapproachable
SarvEsvaran and His consort to eulogize them . In Sri VaradarAja
panchakam , it was the Lord's affection ( vaathsalyam ) that 
made him bold ( vAthsalyamEva mukharIkarOthi ) . In GodhA
sthuthi , the auspicious guNAs of ANDAL makes him pour 
out his heart ( Mowna dhruhO mukharayanthi guNAs tvadhIyA : ) .
Here in the case of dEhaLIs asthuthi , it is the supermacy 
( Iswarathvam ) that unleashes his tongue . 


tvacchakravath drutha manEhasi gUrNamAnE 
    nimnOtha krama nidarsitha  nEmi vrutthA : I
aarAdhya GopanagarE krupayOdhitham tvAm 
    svArAjyam argyam alabhantha surAsurEndrA : II

( anvaya kramam  ) : tvadh chakravath dhrutham 
gUrNamAnE anEhasi nimna unnatha krama : nidarsitha 
nEmi vrutthA : sura asura IndrA : gOpanagarE krupayA
udhitham tvAm aarAdhya argyam  svArAyam alabhantha .

( meaning ) : O Lord of GopapurA ! The wheel of Time spins 
as fast as the  ChakrAyutham ( Sudarsanam ) adorning
Your hand . The hundreds of edges of  Your chakram 
change their positions to up and down with time as it
rotates fast . Similarly , the creators ( BrahmAs ) and
the lord of dEvAs ( IndrAs ) and asurAs ( MahA Bali et al)
change from their superior to lower positions with the 
spinning of the wheel of Time . They fully understand that
their rank and power are thus not permanent and hence arrive
at Your sannidhi in ThirukkOvalUr , perform aarAdhanam 
for You , rid themselves of the bonds of karma this way  and 
attain moksham through engagement in Bhakthi or Prapatthi . 
Some  attain residency in svarga lokam through their 
worship of You . Thus , the SurAs and AsurAs worship You ,
who appeared here out of Your own infinite mercy and 
attain the objects of their desire through Your anugraham .  

SlOkam 4 

aakalpa pushpa subhagOnnatha bAhu sAka :
   padhE sadhA paripachELima sathpalasthvam I
paNNAtaDa sprusi mruganDu tapOvanEsmin
   chAyA nileena bhuvanOsi tamAla sAki II

( anvaya Kramam ) : PaNNA taDa sprusi asmin MruganDu
tapOvanE tvam aakalpa pushpa subhaga unnatha  bAhu 
sAka: paadhE sadhA sath pala : chAyA nileena bhuvana: 
tamAla sAkI asi .

( Meaning ) : In this penance-grove ( TapOvanam ) of
sage MruganDu situated on the bank of the river PaNNA
( PeNNai aaru ) , You stand like the green  TamAla tree
( nettilinga pacchilai maram ) with its tall branches resembling 
your bounteous , long and lovely hands , its flowers like Your 
beautiful ornaments adorning You .  This tree has at its lower 
portions ( feet of the Lord ) has always the ripe and nourishing
fruits ( boons of the Lord ) and protects the world and its beings
under it through its luminous shade ( rakshakathvam of the Lord ) . 
You bathe the eyes of Your devotees with parmAnandham , while
you stand on the banks of PaNNA river like a TamAla tree in 
the penance-grove of Sage MruganDu .

Here Swami Desikan compares the Lord to a tall , ever green
TamAla tree . The attributes of the Lord found in the TamAla 
tree are (1) its long branches reminding Swami of the long and 
lovely arms of the Lord praised by Thirumangai as" nedum taDakkai " ,
(2) Yielding of its fruits not on the top branches , but at branches
closer to the ground for one to pick them easily  reminding 
one of the statement in parmArtha sthuthi ( PraNathai : 
GruhyathE palam ) . These fruits picked by the devotees 
through the act of salutation of the Lord  are ripe , sweet 
and pure ( Suddha Satva mayam ) . Swami Desikan is also 
reminded of the cool and far-enveloping shade of this tree 
and compares it to the VaasudEva tarucchAyA , which with 
its lustre and shade enlivens and protects the world . The 
word ChAyA has been intrepretted by the commentators 
as to mean both shade and lustre. The Lord's radiance  makes
the Sun , Agni  and the Moon lustrous and their effulgence is 
thus directly derived from the Lord's chAyA  . This VaasudEva-
Trivikrama TamAla  tree extends its shadow far and wide 
and envelops the entire world under its shade and comforts
the denizens of the universe . 

The first slOkam of this Sthuthi spoke of the Lord's BhUmnA ,
the second of His Iswarathvam , the third of His position as 
the Lord of the dEvAs and the asurAs and the fourth as the 
fruit-laden , ever green tree to be enjoyed by one and all .

Swami Desikan ThiruvadigaLE SaraNam 
Oppiliappan Koil VaradAchAri Sadagopan