[Advaita-l] Digest of Paramacharya's Discourses on Soundaryalahari (DPDS-44)
profvk at yahoo.com
Sat Nov 22 23:26:07 CST 2003
Recall the Note about the organization of the Digest, from DPDS 26 or the earlier ones.
A Digest of Paramacharyas Discourses on Soundaryalahari - 44
(Digest of pp.987 -993 of Deivathin Kural, 6th volume, 4th imprn.)
sudhAm-apy-AsvAdya prati-bhaya-jarA-mRtyu hariNIM
vipadyante vishve vidhi shatamakhAdyA divishhadaH /
karALaM yat kshhvelaM kabaLitavataH kAla-kalanA
na shambhos-tan-mUlaM tava janani tATangka-mahimA // 28 //
AsvAdya api : Even after having consumed
sudhAm : the nectar
prati-bhaya-jarA-mRtyu-hariNIM : (which) eradicates the dreadful old age and death
vishve divishhadaH : all the divines
vidhi-shatamakhAkhyAH : like BrahmA, Indra and others
vipadyante : meet their end (at the time of pralaya).
Yat : (But) the fact that
shambhoH : for Lord Shiva
kabalitavataH : who had consumed
karALaM kshhvelaM : the terrible poison (of KalakuTa)
kAla-kalanA na : there is no submission to Time
tan-mUlaM : has its reason (in)
janani : Oh Mother
tava tATangka-mahimA : the Glory of Your ear-ornament (tATangka).
We have always been led to believe that some one who has consumed he most dreadful poison has to meet his end, whereas some one who has taken the nectar will be immortal. What is happening here is exactly the reverse. All the divines who had partaken of the nectar have all to disappear at the Deluge whereas the Lord who has consumed the most dreadful hAlAhala, is standing as the lonely survivor after the Deluge.
What is more, this partition of the Lord on the one side and all the other divines on the other side is also happening in the context of Service to the Mother Goddess. Mukunda, Brahma and Indra and all those divines fall at Her feet with their crowns touching Her feet (#22), while the crownless dweller of the burial ground is distinguished as unique. The punchline of this remark is that those who fell at Her feet are destroyed in the praLaya, but He who did not so prostrate before Her is unaffected by the praLaya!
There is even another shloka (#29) which says that She runs to welcome the one who did not serve, and while so running, tramples on the crowns of those that chose to serve Her and fall at Her feet!
[Since the Paramacharya elaborates rather lengthily
on this reference to shloka 29 here,
I am giving it here with meanings and all,
though he has not yet finished his discussion of #28. VK ]
kirITaM vairinchaM parihara puraH kaiTabha-bhidaH
kaThore koTIre skhalasi jahi jambhAri-makuTaM /
praNamreshh-veteshhu prasabham-upayAtasya bhavanaM
bhavasyA-bhyutthAne tava parijanoktir-vijayate // 29 //
vijayate : Remarkable (= to be noted) are
tava parijanoktiH : the words of your maids-in-attendance,
abhyuthAne : at the hasty stir to welcome
bhavasya : Lord Shiva
upayAtasya : (who) had come
bhavanaM : home
prasabham : suddenly, unannounced.
praNamreshhu eteshhu : Amidst all these prostrating (divines)
parihara : avoid
vairincham kirITam : the crown of Creator Brahma;
purah : in front (of you)
skhalasi : you are trampling (over)
kaThore koTire : the heavy crown
kaitabha-bhidaH : of the enemy of Kaitabha ( = Vishnu)
jahi : (also) avoid
jambhAri makuTam : the crown of the enemy of jambha (= Indra).
Among the many names of the Creator Brahma, the Acharya most often uses the name virinchi (See shlokas nos.1, 2 and 12 for example). The word rinchati means creates . The prefix vi before the word adds a special effect to that action indicated by rinchati. In other words, Creator Brahma does the creation work most effectively and with dedication. Therefore he is virinchi.
Kaitabha-bit denotes the One who vanquished the asura Kaitabha; therefore it is Vishnu. When He was in yoga-nidra, the asuras Madhu and Kaitabha attacked the Lord BrahmA, patent in the region of the divine navel of Lord Vishnu. And Brahma sang a song of praise of lord Vishnu so that He may wake up. The Lord obliged by shaking up the Goddess Yoga-nidrA, and vanquished the two asuras. Goddess Yoga-NidrA is none else but the Mother Goddess. It is quite fitting therefore that Vishnu is remembered here as Kaitabha-vid; because it is Kaitabha that connects Vishnu, Brahma and parA-shakti in the same cosmic event.
His (Vishnus) crown is not just an ordinary one. It is solid, not hollow in its material. Why is it solid? The reason comes in the stotra called Vishnu-pAdAdi-keshAnta-stotra of the Acharya himself. kRta-makuTa-mahAdeva-linga-pratishhTe meaning thereby that the crown of Vishnu is in the form of a shiva-linga. Now comes the ironical situation!. It is this crown that the maids-in-attendance of ambaaL are wanting her not to trample over. It is the shiva-linga-formed crown on the head of Vishnu that is now at the feet of ambaaL! And that is what She is about to trample, in her hurry to welcome Her Lord, when He arrives home suddenly. When Bhakti and Love are in full flood, as in the case of Kannappars behaviour, none can default any action, even if it looks like one that is faulty!
The context in which this happens is still more interesting. Bhava is returning to his bhavanam this is the context. Bhava means Shiva. Bhavanam means home. He is returning home unexpectedly and ambaal, as soon as She became aware of this, She hastens to welcome Him in the tradition of a traditional pati-vratA. prasabham means in great haste and excitement. And here comes a word abhyuthAnam that has great significance.
abhyuthAnam adharmasya does it not ring a bell? It is the Lords promise in the Gita, that he will come whenever there is a damage to dharma. In that context, abhyuthAnam means rising to the occasion. But now Soundaryalahari adds another meaning to that word abhyuthAnaM. It also means rising to welcome or welcoming. This sets up an interesting thought in my mind. Why not we appropriate this meaning in the shloka of the Gita also. Then it would mean:
abhyuthAnam adharmasya = the welcome offered by adharma.
In other words, to make the Lord come down as an avatar, a welcome strategy would be adharma. It was the adharma of a Ravana, of a Hiranyakashipu, of a Kamsa that brought in three great avatars of the Lord!. But let us not carry the analogy too far. We should also remember what finally happened to these carriers of the welcome banner!
We have strayed too far from the shloka 28, which was our main discussion point. Let us go back to it now.
To be Continued
Thus spake the Paramacharya
PraNAms to all advaitins and devotees of Mother Goddess
Prof. V. Krishnamurthy
My website on Science and Spirituality is http://www.geocities.com/profvk/
You can access my book on Gems from the Ocean of Hindu Thought Vision and Practice, and my father R. Visvanatha Sastri's manuscripts from the site.
Also see the webpages on Paramacharya's Soundaryalahari :
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