நாயக னாய்நின்ற நந்தகோபனுடைய
கோயில்காப் பானே! கொடித்தோன்றும் தோரண
வாயில்காப் பானே! மணிக்கதவம் தாள்திறவாய்;
ஆயர்சிறுமிய ரோமுக்கு அறைபறை
மாயன் மணிவண்ணன் நென்னலே வாய்நேர்ந்தான்;
தூயோமாய் வந்தோம் துயிலெழப் பாடுவான்;
வாயால் முன்னமுன்னம் மாற்றாதே அம்மா! நீ
நேய நிலைக்கதவம் நீக்கேலோ ரெம்பாவாய்.
You, the guard (kaappaan) of the temple (kOyil) of the Lord who stood (ninRa) as our savior (naayagan)! the guard (kaappaan) of the arched ornamented (thOraNa) door (vaayil) decorated (thOnrum) by garlands (kodi). Please open (thiRavaay) the latch (thaaL) of the jewelled (maNi) door (kadhavam). The mystic (maayan) Lord (maNi vaNNan) has given his word (vaay nErndhaan), yesterday (nenne) itself, to the children (siRumi) of aayarpaadi (aayar), that he would give them, the drum (paRai) used for beating (aRai) during the period of 'paavai nOnbu'. We have come (vandhOm) fresh and clean (thooya) to sing (paaduvaan) in order to wake him (thuyil ezha). Ah (amma)! First of all
(munnam munnam), you (nee) remove (open neekku), the barrier (nilai kadhavam) without any denying (maatraadhE) or discussing (vaayaal).
You, the sentry guarding the temple of our Lord Nandagopa! And you sentinel at the inner gate ornamented with flags and festoons! Please open the latch of the gem-studded door! For us the cowherd girls, our mysterious and radiant Lord Krishna promised yesterday itself to give us the heralding drum. We have all come here, with a pure mind, to wake him up with songs. Please therefore, open the heavy doors and let us in.
Thus in ten pasurams Andal woke up girls of differing natures and thereby all the girls of Gokula were woken up and they all proceed to Sri Nandagopan's mansion and request the door keeper to let them in.
Cowherd colonies in those days may have contained only huts and Nanda's mansion may be a big hut, without a doorkeeper. And all this may be Andal's fertile imagination. But what she is doing is to tell us how one should enter a temple in Archavatara, and worship the Lord. Sri PARASARA BHATTAR in his SRI RANGARAJA STAVA lays down the procedure for temple entry based on this stanza. The door keepers are really our Acharyas. In our daily pooja we open the door of our 'koyil azhwar' (the box where the home idol is kept) by reciting the Acharya Parampara and finally this verse without fail.
TUYOMAAY VANDOM - we have come with purity. What is the purity meant here ? Not the usual physical or even mental purity. The physical purity of cowherds is well known, say the commentators. The purity referred to here is the fact that they have come to do service to the Lord WITHOUT ASKING ANYTHING IN RETURN. Kainkarya itself is the end (Swayam Purushaartha) and is not the means to an end. This point should be ever fixed in the heart of a Sri Vaishnava.
Click title to hear the song by Sudha Raghunathan (Ragam: Mohana, Talam: Adi)
Saturday, December 31, 2005
நாயக னாய்நின்ற நந்தகோபனுடைய
Tuesday, December 27, 2005
எல்லே இளங்கிளியே! இன்னம் உறங்குதியோ?
சில்லென் றழையேன்மின், நங்கைமீர்! போதர்கின்றேன்;
‘வல்லை, உன் கட்டுரைகள்! பண்டேஉன் வாயறிதும்!’
‘வல்லீர்கள் நீங்களே, நானேதான் ஆயிடுக!’
‘ஒல்லைநீ போதாய், உனக்கென்ன வேறுடையை?’
‘எல்லோரும் போந்தாரோ?’ ‘போந்தார், போந்து எண்ணிக்கொள்’
வல்லானை கொன்றானை, மாற்றாரை மாற்றழிக்க
வல்லானை, மாயனைப் பாடேலோ ரெம்பாவாய்.
What surprise (ellE)!, You beautiful parrot (kiLiyE)! you are still (innam) sleeping (uRangu)! The girl replies, "Hey girls (nangaiyeer)!, Don't call(azhaiyEn) me with such mind (min) chilling (chil) words. I am coming (aruginREn) in a little while (pOdhu)." We have known about (aRidhum) your (un) smart (vallai) tales (katturaigaL) for a long time (pandE) from your (un) own mouth (vaay). The girl says, "Ok, you (neengaL) are the smart (valleergaL) ones, Let me (naanE) be the loser (thaan aayiduga)". You (nee) start (pOdhaay) quickly (ollai) then. What (enna) other (vERu) job (udaiyai) do you (unakku) have? Come out (pOndhu) and count yourself (eNNi koL); all (ellaarum) who are coming (pOndhaar), have come (pOndhu). Let us sing (paadEl) the praise of the Lord (maayan), who destroyed (azhikka) the enemies (maatraar) in a war (maatru), and who killed (konRaan) the powerful (val) elephant (aanai). [the word 'pOndhu' is derived from 'pO' in the same manner as 'vandhu' is derived from 'vaa']
The girl: Don't you scream! My good friends! I shall come presently.
Group: Yes indeed! Don't we know you, full of eloquent promises!
Girl: Oh yes, I agree, you are the ones gifted with eloquence. Or let it be myself, if you insist.
Group: (Enough of all this banter!) Come along. Don't you be thinking of this and that.
Girl: Have all the girls come?
Group: Sure, you can count them, if you so choose.
Girl: Pardon me, what is the program?
Group: As we move down to the river, we shall keep on singing the glories of our mysterious Lord, Sri Krishna who killed the mighty elephant, Kuvalaya peetam, sent by Kamsa and who vanquished many other foes as well.
This pasuram which brings out the characteristics of a SriVaishnava is considered to be the very essence of Tiruppavai by our Acharyas.
The girl who is woken up begins to sing.
1. YELLE ILANKILIYE -the implied sense is that the speech of the devotees is most welcome.
2. INNAM URANGUDIYO -It is wrong to indulge in other things if the company of Bhagavatas is available.
3. CHIL ENRU AZHAYENMIN - Not a single harsh word should be used with the Bhaktas.
4. NANGAIMIR PODARGINREN - Devotees should be addressed respectfully.
5. VALLAI UN KATTURAIGAL - Even the chastisement by a Bhakta (which will always be constructive) should be accepted gratefully.
6. VALLEERGAL NEENGALE NAANE THAN AAYIDUGA - owning others mistakes as one's own is the hallmark of a Sri Vaishnava. For ex. Bharata holds himself responsible for Rama's exile.
7. OLLAI NEE PODAAY - Separation from devotees even for a second is unbearable.
8. UNAKKENNA VERUDAYAI - The path laid down by one's ancestors is to be followed, not what is dictated by one's own mind.
9. ELLAARUM PONDAARO PONDU ENNIKKOL- seeing a congregation of devotees is the most desired fruit in this life. The enjoyment is not complete even if one devotee is missing. Their sight and touch are all contributory factors to one's enjoyment.
10. VALLAANAI..etc - Singing His virtues, valour, victory etc are vital to a Sri Vaishnava as a means of pleasing other Srivaishnavas; as such it results in the service of Bhagavatas.
These Ten Commandments (golden rules) are to be cherished as they constitute the acid test for testing whether one is really a Sri Vaishnava.
Click title to hear the song by Sudha Raghunathan (Ragam: Begada, Talam: Rupakam)
Posted by Giridhar Prasannan at 8:32 PM
Saturday, December 24, 2005
உங்கள் புழைக்கடைத் தோட்டத்து வாவியுள்
செங்கழுநீர் வாய்நெகிழ்ந்து ஆம்பல்வாய் கூம்பின காண்;
செங்கல் பொடிக்கூறை வெண்பல் தவத்தவர்,
தங்கள் திருக்கோயில் சங்கிடுவான் போகின்றார்;
எங்களை முன்னம் எழுப்புவான் வாய்பேசும்
நங்காய்! எழுந்திராய், நாணாதாய்! நாவுடையாய்!
சங்கொடு சக்கரம் ஏந்தும் தடக்கையன்
பங்கயக் கண்ணானைப் பாடேலோ ரெம்பாவாய்.
Look (kaaN)!, Red (sen) lilies (kazhuneer) have opened (negizhndhu) their petals (vaay), and waterlilies (aambal) have closed (koombina) their petals (vaay), on the pond (vaavi) in the garden (thOttam) in your (ungaL) back yard (puzhakkadai). The ascetics (thavaththavar), wearing ashes (veNbal) and saffron (sengaR podi) robes (koorai) are going to (pOdhanRaar) their (thangaL) sacred (thiru) temple (kOyil) to blow the conch (sangiduvaan). Hey girl (nangaay), you who boasted (vaay pEsum) that you would wake us (engaLai) up (ezhuppu) first (munnam)! now wake up (ezhundhiraay). Shameless girl (naaNaadhaay), talkative girl (naavu udaiyaay)! We are going to sing (paadEl) about the Lord, who bears (Endhum) the conch (sangu) and the wheel (chakkaram) in his hands, who has wide (thadam) arms (kai), and lotus (pangayam) shaped eyes (kaN).
You boastful chatter box! You promised to wake us all up. All tall-talk!Get up fast! Already, if you care to look at the pond in your back-garden, the red lotus has blossomed and the night lilies have closed up. Ascetics in ochre-robes, with their sparkling teeth are striding towards the temple to blow the conch. Are you not ashamed? Get up! Come, let us sing in praise of our Lord, the lotus-eyed Kannan (Krishna) who holds the conch (called Paanchajanyam) and the discus (called Sudarsanam) in his broad, powerful hands.
A gopi who is an expert orator and who is also chief among these girls is woken up. She had promised that she would get up before the rest and wake them up. She has conveniently forgotten all about it and is sleeping comfortably and peacefully. This is an unpardonable crime. But still her inclusion in the group is most essential as, with her silver tongue, she can easily subdue Krishna. Moreover it is essential that not a single girl loses His grace. If she were to sing of Krishna as He appears bearing the discus and conch He is sure to relent.
Incidentally Andal tells us, "Use your tongue not merely for tasting delicious dishes, but for singing about the Lotus-eyed One. That was the main purpose for which it was gifted to you in the first place by God."
Click title to hear the song by Sudha Raghunathan (Ragam: Ananda Bhairavi, Talam: Adi)
Posted by Giridhar Prasannan at 8:25 PM
Friday, December 23, 2005
புள்ளின்வாய் கீண்டானை, பொல்லா அரக்கனைக்
கிள்ளிக் களைந்தானைக் கீர்த்திமை பாடிப்போய்,
பிள்ளைகள் எல்லாரும் பாவைக் களம்புக்கார்;
வெள்ளி எழுந்து, வியாழம் உறங்கிற்று;
புள்ளும் சிலம்பினகாண்; போதரிக் கண்ணினாய்!
குள்ளக் குளிரக் குடைந்து நீராடாதே,
பள்ளிக் கிடத்தியோ? பாவாய்! நீ நன்னாளால்
கள்ளம் தவிர்ந்து கலந்தேலோ ரெம்பாவாய்.
All (ellaam) the girls (piLLai) have reached (pukkaar) the place (kaLam) for 'paavai nOnbu', singing (paadi) the praise (keerththi) of the Lord, while going (pOy). The Lord, who split (keendaan) the mouth (vaay) of the bird (puL) shaped asura; who sniped (kiLLu) and disposed off (kaLaindhu) the heads of the naughty (polla) rakshasa (arakkan). Venus (veLLi) has risen (ezhundhu). Jupiter (viyaazhan) has gone to sleep (uRangu). Birds (puL) are chirping (silambina), See (kaaN)!. You have eyes (kaNNinaay) like the honey bee (ari) on a flower (pOdhu)! You (nee) are lying (kidaththiyO) in bed and sleeping (paLLi), without dipping in (kudaindhu) and bathing (neeraadaadhE) in the harsh (kuLLa) cold (kuLira) water. Oh girl (paavaay)! On this good (nan) day (naaL), leave (thavirndhu) your tricks (kaLLam) behind and join us (kalandhu).
You, dainty girl with that red lotus-like eyes! Don't you see? All the girls have arrived at the river bed for the worship (Paavai Nonbu), singing the glory of our Lord who killed the demon Bakaasura in disguise as a bird, by breaking up the mouth (in the incarnation of Krishna) and who just plucked away the ten heads of the wicked Raavana and slew him (in His avatar as Raama). It is time you got up. Venus has risen. Jupiter has gone to sleep. Can't you hear the chirping of the birds in flight? Don't you pretend to be asleep! Come, join us, get to the river for a refreshing bath on this auspicious day.
A girl with bewitching eyes (PODARI KKANNINAAY) is woken up in this verse. She is of the view that Krishna will come to her fascinated by the beauty of her eyes. To add to this she is lying, brooding over Krishna's heroic exploits, in the bed formerly shared with Him and which still retains His fragrance.
The statement in the previous verse that Sri Rama scored over Krishna in being "MANATHUKKU INIYAAN" created a sort of mutiny among the girls, some of whom disputed this by saying, "how can Rama be said to be the receptacle of all the virtues? Did He, like Krishna who acted as Pandavaduta, go as messenger for anyone? Didn't Krishna's charms allure even the sages?
Even His mischievous pranks are meant for us only. Moreover Krishna is our husband and irrespective of how he treats us,it is not proper for us to praise another as being greater."
Some mediators intervened and pointed out that both are the same Sriman Narayana, and so where is the cause for dispute. Thus reconciled the girls split into two halves each praising the glory of Krishna and Rama. This is the excellence of this verse.
Click title to hear the song by Sudha Raghunathan (Ragam: Atana, Talam: Rupakam)
Posted by Giridhar Prasannan at 9:49 PM