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SrI vishNu sahasranAmam - Slokam 58 - Part 2.

From: Narasimhan Krishnamachari (
Date: Wed Sep 15 1999 - 21:18:40 PDT

		SrI vishNu sahasranAmam -Slokam 58 - Part 2.


546. guyhah - He who is concealed.

om guhyAya namah.

SrI BhaTTar points out that He is concealed by the possession of a body
which is made of the celestial matter (Suddha sattva), which fact is
revealed by the great upanishads.   Thus His divya Atma-svarUpa cannot
be comprehended by us.    nammAzhvAr declares:  j~nAlam uNDu umizhnda
mAlai eNNumARu aRiya mATTEn (tiruvAimozhi 3.4.9) - "I can't comprehend
this emperumAn who swallowed the whole world and then recreated it".  

SrI Sa'nkara gives two interpretations:  1. rahasya upanishad vedyatvAt
- One who is to be known only by the esoteric knowledge conveyed by the
upanishad-s; and 2. guhAyAm hRadayAkASe nihita iti vA, guhyah - He who
is hidden in the guha or the heart.  SrI rAdhAkRshNa SAstri elaborates
on this further and points out that the idea here is that He is not
realized through the ordinary senses or the reasoning by the mind, but
only by deep inward meditation and contemplation.  He cannot be
revealed by someone else to us, but only by our own inward search. 
Thus He is guhya or concealed. 

547. gabhIrah - He who is deep or mysterious.

om gabhIrAya namah.

He is gabhIrah because of His gAmbhIrya - His Majesty which is deep and
cannot be completely comprehended.  BhagavAn is called deep because His
Nature is not easily understandable; His majesty can only be
approximately conceived.  If the bound souls which are tainted by deep
beginningless Nescience can become pure by merely coming into contact
with Him, this can give an approximate idea of His greatness.  This is
like the muddy water which becomes clean by coming in contact with the
kataka seed.  

SrI rAdhAkRshNa SAstri adds that BhagavAn is mysterious because He has
the simultaneous co-existence in perfection of all the six guNa-s  -
j~nAna, bala, aiSvarya, vIrya, Sakti, and tejas.   Just as the bottom
of a very deep lake with very clear water looks like it is very near in
spite of its depth, BhagavAn's depth is impossible to find even though
it appears that He can be easily comprehended.  He is very far though
He appears to be very near for the ordinary beings.

548. gahanah -  a) He who is deep, Impenetrable, Inexplicable.
		b) He who is the witness in everyone

om gahanAya namah.

gahanam refers to a forest, a fortress etc.  We cannot see or figure
out what is inside a dense forest or in a well-built fortress. 
BhagavAn's Nature is similar (SrI rAdhAkRshNa SAstri).  In his
commentary on amarakOSam, appayArya gives the explanation "gahanam
dushpraveSa sthAnam" - A place which is difficult to access.  SrI
BhaTTar explains the nAma as dur-avagAhah, and SrI Sa'nkara gives the
description "dushpraveSatvAt gahanah", both of which convey the above
idea.  Even though we can see the bottom of the Ocean when the water is
clear, it is very difficult to access the bottom of the Ocean floor. 
So also, even though bhagavAn may seem easy to realize because of what
is revealed in the upanishad-s, all the same it is difficult to grasp
His Nature.  The Sruti declares Him as "aprApya manasA saha -
Inaccessible to the mind" (SrI v.v. rAmAnujan). 

b) The alternate interpretation for gahanah is based on its derivation
from the root gAhU - viloDane - to dive into.  BhagavAn is called
gahanah because He is inside everyone and everything, and is the
witness of everything in its waking, dream and sleep states (SrI
Sa'nkara).  Through these three states we get an understanding of what
is within our ability to comprehend.  But through these three states,
we cannot get an idea of One who is the Witness of these three states
in all of us (SrI rAdhAkRshNa SAstri).

549. guptah - He who is hidden.

om guptAya namah.

This nAma is formed from the root gup - rakshaNe to protect, to
conceal.  SrI BhaTTar explains that BhagavAn's Greatness is guarded and
protected  well by the pUrvAcArya-s who knew His Greatness by His
Grace.  One cannot hope to learn of the Lord's mahimA except by being
guided by these AcArya-s of our sampradAyam.  Even the upanishads
cannot completely reveal BhagavAn to us.  He is known only to the likes
viSvAmitra who declares "aham vedmi mahAtmAnam - I know the greatness
of young rAma".   It is only by following the sampradAyam of the
AcArya-s and following their instructions with sincerity that one can
realize Him who is hidden to us otherwise.

He is also One who is protected with great care by the likes of
anantAzhvAn, garuDa, vishvaksena, etc.   Even in paramapadam where it
is not easy for anyone to go, He is protected by ananta who is spitting
poisonous fire - "a'ngu AravAram adu kETTu azhal umizhum pU'ngAr
aravaNaiyAn pon mEni" - (nAnmugan tiru antAdi 10) - SrI v.v. rAmAnujan.

SrI Sa'nkara explains that BhagavAn is hidden because He is not
accessible through words, thought etc. - va'ng manasa agocararvAt
guptah.  Even though He is in every being, He is not manifested - esha
sarveshu bhUteshu gUDhah AtmA na prakASate - kaTha upanishad 3.12.   We
also have "yato vAco nivartante aprApya manasA saha" - brah. valli 4 of
 taitt. upa. 

550. cakra-gadA-dharah - The bearer of the discus and the mace.

om cakra-gadA-dharAya namah. 

This nAma of bhagavAn is referenced in yuddha kANDam 114 - tamasah
paramo dhAtA Sa'nkha cakra gadA dharah.  SrI nammAzhvAr refers to Him
as "nAngu tOLan, kuni Sar'ngan, oN Sa'ngu gadai vAL AzhiyAn"
(tiruvAimozhi 8.8.1) - SrI v.v. rAmAnujan.  While the superficial
reference in this nAma is that BhagavAn is the bearer of cakra, gadhA,
etc., SrI M. V. rAmAnujAcArya explains that the reference to the pa'nca
mahAyudha-s (Sankha, cakra, gadA, Sar'nga, and nandaka) has deeper
signifcance.  These are also the incarnations or personifications of
the pa'nca Sakti-s viz. sRshTi, sthiti, samhAra, nigraha, and anugraha.
 These pa'nca mahAyudha-s are an integral part of bhagavAn's SarIram
which is of Suddha-sattva made of these five mahA Sakti-s, and are like
His instruments in His five functions of creation, protection,
destruction, giving punishment, and giving benefits.  The pa'nca mahA
Sakti-s have been referred to earlier (in nAma 544).  SrI v.v.
rAmAnujan adds that in addition, the pa'nca Ayudha-s are also none
other than the nitya sUri-s e.g., sudarSana AzhvAn, pA'ncajanya AzhvAn,

Note that the five paramAtma Sakti-s are here associated with the five
functions (sRshTi, sthiti etc.), the five Ayudha-s of bhagavAn, the
nitya sUri-s, etc. in a simple way and clearly.

SrI rAdhAkRshNa SAstri quotes passages from SrI vishNu purANam
(1.22.69-74) to identify the five Ayudha-s as representations of the
different tattva-s:  BhagavAn supports egotism (rAjasa ahamkAram and
mAnasa ahamkAram, into the five elements and the five organs of sense),
in the emblems of His conch-shell and His bow;  In the form of His
discus, He supports the mind (manas), whose thoughts, like the weapon,
fly swifter than the winds;  The bright sword of vishNu is the holy
wisdom (vidyA); Intellect (buddhi) abides in mAdhava in the form of the
mace (gadA).  This nAma refers to His form where He holds the manas
tattva and the buddhi tattva in His two hands in the forms of the cakra
and gadA respectively.  The broader meaning of the whole passage in SrI
vishNu purANam is that BhagavAn is the source and repository of
everything there is - soul, nature, intellect, egotism, the elements,
the senses, mind, ignorance, and wisdom.  All that is wisdom, all that
is ignorance, all that is, all that is not, all that is everlasting, is
centered in Him.  He is time, He is earth, He is sky, He is heaven,
etc.  Those interested should read the section of SrI vishNu purANa for
a continuation of this beautiful description of His "viSva rUpa". 

Thus the nAma also signifies that bhagavAn is the source and 
controller of everything there is, was and will be.

-dAsan kRshNamAcAryan


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