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Messages - Subramanian.R

Translations and Commentaries by Forum Members / Zen Stories
« on: December 01, 2008, 10:46:28 AM »
This story speaks about Maya, "Even this shall pass!"

A student went to his Zen Master, and said:  "My meditation is horrible!
I feel so distracted, or my legs begin to ache or I am constantly falling
asleep.  It is just horrible!"

The Zen Master said kindly:  This shall pass!

A month later,  the student came back to the Master, and said:
"My meditatin is wonderful.  I feel so aware, so peaceful, so alive!
It is just wonderful!"

The Zen Master replied, matter-of-factly:  "Oh!  Even this shall pass!"

(Source:  The Essays in Zen Buddhism, Dr. D.T. Suzuki.  Rider and
Company, New York.)

Arunachala Siva.   

Translations and Commentaries by Forum Members / Zen Stories
« on: December 01, 2008, 09:42:48 AM »
This about the way and the goal in life.

After winning several archery contests, a young man, rather a boastful
champion, challenged Zen Master, Bosho, who was reknowned for his
skill as an archer.  The young man demonstrated remarkable technical
archer, when he hit a distant bull's eye on his first try.  And then he
sent a second arrow and split the second arrow horizontally into two
parts.  "There", he said to the Zen Master, "see if you can match that!".

Undisturbed the master, did not draw his bow, but rather told the young
man to follow him upto a mountain.  Curious about the old fellow's
intentions, the champion followed him high into the mountain until they
reached a deep chasm, spanned by a rickety old log of a bridge.  Calmly
stepping onto the middle of that unsteady and certainly perilous bridge,
the Zen Master, drew his bow, and fired a clean direct hit on to a flying
bird!  "Now it is your turn," the Master said as he gracefully stpped back
onto the safe ground.  Staring with terror into the seemingly bottomless
and beckoning abyss, the young man could not force himself to step
out onto the log, no less shoot a target.  "You have much skill with
your bow," the Master said, sensing his challenger's predicament, "but
you have little skill, on the way, with the mind, that lets loose the shot,
towards the goal!"

(Source:  The Essays in Zen Buddhism.  Dr. D.T. Suzuki. Rider and
Company, New York.)

Arunachala Siva.

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Miracles Do Happen
« on: December 01, 2008, 09:30:00 AM »
Desur Akhilandamma, who is called in Ramana circles, as Desuramma,
was living in Desur, a small village near Tiruvannamalai.  She was
feeding Bhagavan Ramana even from Virupaksha Cave days and used
to bring greens for cooking to Mother Azhagamma, in Skandasramam. 
She was giving 'bhiksha' in Asram, on every Jayanti Day, that is in

Once a couple of days before one such Jayanti Day, she had developed
a huge boil on her head and she was taking medicines/ointments.
The village physician advised her not to stir out since, if the boil opened
up, it will create bleeding and immense pain, with danger to life.
She however decied to go to Tiruvannamalai for giving 'bhiksha' on Jayanti Day, inspite of this danger.  She went with adequate food and sweets for all the inmates. She served them during lunch time, keeping a towel-bandage on her head.  Bhagavan Ramana asked her what was the problem.  She did not say anything. Someone else told Him, that she had got a boil on the head. Bhagavan Ramana kindly said:  "O!  Let her not worry about it!"  The
function was over and she returned to the village.  The boil got cured
within a day or two thereafter, without any problem! 

(Source:  Arunachala's Ramana.  Boundless Ocean of Grace. Volume 2.
Sri Ramanasramam, Tiruvannamalai.)

Arunachala Siva.   

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Re: Upadesha Saram
« on: November 30, 2008, 05:10:40 PM »
Bhagavan Ramana has always advised His devotees, to acquire
Eka Chintana.  He even said that breath-control, Pranayama, is
not necessary and mere 'watching of the breathing' is adequate.
Bhagavan Ramana said: "Catch one thought and that will lead you
to self enquiry and no-thought state."  He has advised to chant
Siva, Siva, to Annamalai Swami.  He has advised Gambhiram Seshayyar,
to do Rama Japa.  When a person has acquired that continuous
practice of mantra japa, He said:  "Go to the root.  Ask who is chanting
this mantra?  Ask where the mantras at the end become quiscent."
He said Kavyakanta Ganapati Sastri to find out the leena-sthana of
mantras.  He even said: "Chanting within I, I, I or Subramanian,
Subramanian, Subramanian, .... will take you there, when the mantra
curls up into its Source.

Verse 14, in Tamil:

Odukka VaLiyai Odungum ULathai,
Vidukka Or Vazhi Undhipara,
Veeyum* adhan uru Undhipara!

(*Veeyum - it will die or become quiscent.)

Breath-controlled, and thought restrained,
The mind turned one-way inward,
Fades and dies.

(Osborne's translation)

Arunachala Siva.       

Dear Dr. Raju,

Yes.  But for that matter the entire Hindustan is a Jnana Bhoomi.
Certain places became well-known to the entire world, like Arunachala,
through Jnana Sambandha, Arunagiri Natha, Guhai Namasivaya,
Guru Namasivaya, Seshdri Swami and Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi.
Chidambaram became well known after Manikkavachagar and the
entire group of Siva devotees.  Sankara has sung about Sri Sailam.
Azhwars have sung about Tirupati.  Arunagiri Natha and First Four
have sung about Kalahasti.  There are songs on Kanaka Durga of
Vijayawada. Raghavendra made Mantralyam Manjali Amma famous.
Almost every Advaita and Siva Siddhanta poets have sung on Kasi.
SRK made Bengal famous.  Dwaraka became well known after Srimad
Bhagavatam. Ujjain became well known by Kalidasa.  Ayodhya, Mithila and
Kurukshetra became famous after Valmiki and Vyasa. 

What is heart bleeding is that this famous Jnana Bhoomi is being
ripped open by sinners from outside this place, today.

Arunachala Siva.   

Translations and Commentaries by Forum Members / Zen Stories
« on: November 30, 2008, 02:58:09 PM »

(On the wasteful discussions on life after death.)

The Japanese Emperor asked the Zen Master, Bosho:

"What happens to a man of enlightenment after death?"

Bosho replied:  " How should I know?"

The Emperor continued:  " But you are a Master!"

Bosho replied: " Yes, Sir.  But I am not dead yet."

(Source: An Introduction to Zen Buddhism.  Dr. Christmas Humphreys.
Picador, London.)

Arunachala Siva. 

Translations and Commentaries by Forum Members / Zen Stories
« on: November 30, 2008, 02:53:34 PM »
A senior Zen monk and his disciples walked on the bank of a river,
and were about to cross.  The water was not very deep, but the
currents were high.  Wary of the current, a charming young woman, in mini skirts, was hesitating to cross over.  She asked the group, whether
they could carry her across.  The Zen Master quickly picked her up
onto his shoulders, transported her across the river, and placed her
back on the other bank.  She thanked him and left.

As the Master continued to walk, the disciples coming behind were
murmuring.  One of the disciples, unable to hold to his silence, spoke
out:  "Master!  The Zen scriptures say that everyone pursuing Zen
should avoid any contact with women, but how come, you picked
that woman up on your shoulders and carried her?" The Zen Master,
looked at them intently and replied in a cool voice:  " Oh! I placed
her on my shoulders and left her at the bank, long time back!  But
you are all still carrying her in your minds!"

(Source:  The Essays on Zen Buddhism, Dr. D.T. Suzuki.  3 Volumes.
Rider and Company, New York.)

Arunachala Siva.

I shall cover some excellent Tevaram songs, in due course.  Meantime,
I shall only write about one decad by Tirunavukkarasar, meaning the
Decad of Removing the Poison, which was sung by the saint when
he wanted to bring back to life, the son of Appoothi Adigal, about which
I posted yesterday.  This song, speaks about, one, two, three... upto
ten, in ten verses.

One is the mountain, to where his devotees' hearts go, (Kailash),
One is the moon, that he wears on his matted locks, (single crescent moon)
One is the begging bowl in his hands which is Brahma Kapala,
One is the animal, that he uses as vehicle, (Bull.)

Two are the golden feet that devas adore,
Two are his consorts with golden ear studs, (Uma and Ganga),
Two are the forms of his deer and fire (deer and fire are alternatively held)
Two are the sons that he has got, (Ganapati/Skanda).

Three are his eyes on his golden face,
Three are the branches of his trident,
Three are the arrows given to him, by gods (in Tripura Samhara)
Three are the cities he burnt (Tripura)

Four are his faces, (Sadasiva is having five faces, but the fifth face
    has no form, but is Effulgence, hence only four faces.)
Four are his acts on the living beings, (birth, growth, decay and death)
Four are the legs of his vehicle, (the bull's legs)
Four are the Vedas that praise him everyday.

Five are the heads of the serpents that he wears, (five headed cobra)
Five are the senses that he has conquered, (five senses of devotees)
Five are the arrows of the one he burnt, (Five flower arrows of
Five are the courts he danced.  (Five temples of five cosmic dances)

Six are the branches of the Vedas given by him (Six Vedangas)
Six are the faces of his dear son, (Skanda which six faces)
Six are the legs of the bees swarming his garland (six legged bees)
Six are the tastes that he gave for the humans (six tastes, like sweet,
     alkaline, sour, biiter, hot and acidic)

Seven are the aeons that he made  (7 aeons before final destruction
      of the universe)
Seven are the oceans that he made on his earth,
Seven are the world that he rules,
Seven are the notes of the music from his Veena.

Eight are the forms of Him,  (Ashtangam)
Eight are the flowers that He wears, (konrai, iruvakshi, chamapaka,
      jasmine, lotus, grass and chemparutti.)
Eight are his broad shoulders, (four faces, and eight shoulders)
Eight are the directions he made for this universe.

Nine are the gates that he kept for humans to control,
Nine are the threads on his cross thread,
Nine or his pleats on his matted locks,
Nine the temples that he stay.  (not known)

Ten are the eyes of his serpents (five headed cobra with ten eyes)
Ten are the teeth that he broke, (poetically cobra is said to have 10
Ten are the heads that he pressed with his toe, (Ravana)
Ten* are the act that his devotees do.

(*The last Ten, is a double-meaning Tamil word, which means
the number ten and also the "faithful holding".  The devotees
hold on to his feet with faith.)

(Source:  Tevaram Verses, Book IV. Tirunavukkarasar. Tamil.
published by S.A. Bhaktavatsalam, Gudiyatham, 606 602. Translation
and Prose rendering, my own.)

Arunachala Siva.             

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Sonai Mootha Tiru Padigam
« on: November 30, 2008, 12:42:14 PM »
Sonai Mootha Tiru Padigam, the Elder Decad of Sonai, Arunachala is
by Muruganar, in Sri Ramana Sannidhi Murai.  Like Manikkavchagar
sang Kovil Mootha Tiru Padigam, in Tiruvachakam, Muruganar has
composed this on Arunachala Ramana.

Verse 1 reads as under:

After metling my body and my mind, and also the soul,
You are staying in the Heart, like the sweet mixture of
Honey, milk and jaggery melted in bliss,
You Venkata, the Red Ruby of Arunachala,
Which is more than heaven, You removed my I and mine,
O my Mother, I shall be your slave!

Verse 2 reads as under:

You with your graceful gaze placed me
In the company of your devotees,
You removed the darkness of night which does not see the dawn,
You conferred me your lotus feet, by vanquishing my karmas,
O the Lord of Arunachala,
Who have half of you to the woman with hand drum-like slender waist!

Verse 3 reads as under:

You the one with the raised flag of Nandi,
I am suffering from the heat of delusion,
You with your graceful gaze that came like a spring,
O the one who heard the songs of by Vadvaurar*
With ears lowered, you gave me those ears,
For my songs too, O Venkata, the Lord in
Arunachala, O the King of Chotruthurai**
You grace is everflowing, O the Compassionate!

(* Vaduvarar means Manikkavachagar, who hails from Tiru Vadvaur.
** Chotruthurai, is a town where there is temple of Siva, and this
    is near Thanjavur.)

(Source: Sri Ramana Sannidhi Murai, Tamil., 1998 edition.
Sri Ramanasramam, Tiruvannamalai. Translation and Prose
rendering, my own.)

Arunachala Siva.

Translations and Commentaries by Forum Members / Seerkazhi Tiruppugazh
« on: November 30, 2008, 12:19:53 PM »
Seerkazhi is a small town near Chidambaram.  This is the town in
which Tiru Jnana Sambandha was born.  He was given breast-
milk by Uma, when as a small boy of three years age, was crying
for milk near the temple tank, when his father had gone  for a bath.
Seeing the milk on his lips, the father asks the son, how he had got
the milk, the son replies that he was fed by Uma, when she had
come with her consort just then.  He sings the first Tevaram,:  "One,
one with a golden stud on the ears and mounting on the bull, with
sacred ashes on his body and crescent moon on his locks, he has
stolen my heart!

Arunagiri Natha in his Seerkazhi Tiruppugazh songs, invariably makes
mention about Jnana Sambandha, as the incarnation of Skanda.

One such Seerkazhi composition reads as under:

This body with impermanent flesh and skin and always carrying
  wasteful loads, smelling of urine and excreta,
This is made out by Brahma who is four faced and who made Vedas,
I run around here and there, become tired, diseased and old, and
   walk with stick, with mucus and saliva oozing from my nose and
Let me leave this world, full of maya and diseases, please give me
   your bueatiful anklet wearing feet!
In Madurai, you* sang Tamil songs of Wisdom, and sent the Jainas
   to gallows!
You* served the Pandya King with Fish-Flag,  with holy ashes,
   and cured his fever and hunchback, O my Guru!
You walked into the millet fields thinking about the deerlike Valli,
   and made love to her,
You became the darling son in law of hunters-tribe, married Valli,
    O the Lord of Seerkazhi, my Master!

(* All the miracles of Jnana Sambanda in Madurai, are attributed to
Skanda since Arunagiri Natha does not distinguish between Skanda
and Jnana Sambanhda.)

(Source: Tiruppugazh, Arunagiri Natha.  Tiruppugazh Devotees'
Group, New Delhi.  Translation and Prose rendeing, my own.)

Arunachala Siva. 

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Sivananda Lahari
« on: November 30, 2008, 11:46:16 AM »
Verse 44 gives an imagery of comparing Siva with Lion.  Verse 45
speaks of Siva living under the nest of devotee's mind.

Verse 44 reads as under:

It has got a deer caught in its hand.  (Siva catches the wavering mind,
    which is a deer.  Lion catches the deer.)

It has killed the leader of the elephant herds.  (Siva catches the
     Gajamukasura and kills, and wears the skin as his upper cloth.
     Lion kills elephant.)

It kills all the animals in the forest.  (Siva annihilates all the senses
     in the body for devotees, since he is King in the Heart.)  Lion kills all
     the animals in the forest, as it is the King of the Forest.)

The Panchamuka, the white, lives in the forest happily. I have no fear.
     (Panchamuka, in Sanskrit, means both Lion which has got a large
     face and less large body, and Five Faces, the five faced Siva..
     The white means the white lion or Siva with white holy ashes
     all over his body.  Forest means the Heart Cave.)   

Verse 45 reads like this:

O the great bird of my mind, You live in this tree of "sakas" branches
  in the tree of Vedas!
You are sought after by the other birds of Veda knowing Brahmins!
You taste the endless nectar of good frutis of Dharma,Artha, Kama
  and Moksha!
Please stay in the nest of the lotus feet of Paramasiva, why do you
   fly to tree after tree?

('Sakas' in Sanskrit means both branches of tree and branches of

(Source: Sivananda Lahari. Sanskrit-Tamil. Sri Ramakrishna Math,
Chennai.  Translation and Prose rendering, my own.)

Arunachala Siva.

Translations and Commentaries by Forum Members / Tayumanvar Songs
« on: November 30, 2008, 11:30:15 AM »
In Tayumanavar's songs of Mandalthin.. In the Universe...,
there are a few more excellent verses.  One set reads as under:

When all the six religions like rivers merge in you, the Non vacillating
    Deep Ocean!
The ever spreading Bliss of that ocean, enter the Hearts of great
     yogis and devotees,
It stays and springs forth into the worlds and the worlds in this
     universe, through upadesa to the disciples,
When I walk, or run or stand, if I remain without search for Truth,
Will they come with me when I leave my body?
       O foolish Maya, please come and understand,
The Silence is the only Truth, and that is the Way!

Please use your tongue to adore him,
Please be still, his grace will flow,
My Mother Uma is there to take care of my food,
You are there, Sadananda, to protect me,
I am here to surrender to you,
I shall conquer this wax of mind from catching fire!

One fellow threw stones at you!*
Another hit you with his bow!**
There is another one who sang in nectar like songs!***
My job is to consume your Bliss and Be Still.
I shall be liberated, I have found the way,
Is there any want for me?  O the Sublime!

(* Sakkiya Nayanar. ** Arjuna for getting Pasupatasthra.
*** Manikkavachagar.)

(Source: Tayumanavar Songs.  Tamil Verses. Sri Ramakrishna
Tapovanam, Tiru Paraithurai, near Tiruchirappalli.
Translation and Prose rendering, my own.)

Arunachala Siva. 

Translations and Commentaries by Forum Members / Skandar Andati
« on: November 30, 2008, 11:15:35 AM »
Verses 59 of Skandar Andati, speaks about the impermanence of
human life and the need to get liberated.

Ser- padum - al-am,....O the one who lives in Tiruttani, where
    the lotuses and neelorpala flowers, are crowding in ponds and
    tanks, and who is married to Valli and Deivanayaki,

Serpa - dummal,..... Even with a sneeze, people die in this world,
     what is this life?  I am suffering with,

Serpadhu - mal, ..... bronchitis, swooning, and all other diseases,
      and before this body with three "avasthas" perish on the pyre,

Serpadhu-Mal,.....Please make me merge in You, the Skanda, whose
      lotus feet is adored by Vishnu, Brahma and Indra, everyday
      in the heavens!

(Source:  Skandar Andati, Tiruppugazh.  Tiruppugazh Devotees'
  Group, New Delhi.  Translation and Prose rendeing, my own.)

Arunachala Siva.

Karaikal Amma, is one of the three or four women-saints, who find
their places in Periya Puranam.  In Siva Temples, when you see
63 Saints in the Siva Shrine, Karaikal Amma, is the only one, who
sits majestically and not stand like the remaining.

Punithavathi, (later Karaikal Amma), was the only daughter of a rich
sea-trader in Karaikal.  She was born with silver spoon and was reared
with great care by her parents.  She became interested in Siva devotion
right from her young age.  She was married to another rich merchant,
Paramadatta, the son of another sea-trader in Nagapattinam.  After
marriage, the young couples were living in Karaikal, with the son in law
looking after the trade of his father-in-law.  One day, when Paramadatta
was near the sea-coast, a friend came to see him and presented two
large ripe mangoes to Paramadatta.  Paramadatta gave them to his
servant, asking him to leave them at his house.  Around noon, even before Paramadatta's return, one Siva Saint, came to their house, and Punithavathi, presented one of the two mangoes for the Siva Saint to eat. Paramadatta came for lunch and after food was asking for mango.  The
wife promptly gave him one.  After finishing it, Paramadatta asked for
the other one.  Punithavathi was in a fix, went into the kitchen and intently prayed to Siva.  Suddenly another mango appeared on her palm.  She
quickly brought it to her husband.  The second mango, the husband felt
was sweeter than the first one and he was doubtful whether they are the same duo given to him by his friend.  On asking, Punithavathi told the
entire story.  Her husband did not believe it and challenged whether
Siva could get her one more.  Punithavathi went into the home-altar,
and meditated upon Siva.  Another mango appeared. She gave it to her
husband.  The mango disappeared as soon as Paramadatta was about
to bite it!  Paramadatta was dumbfounded.  Fear gripped him. His wife
must be a quite sublime Siva devotee, perhaps an angel.  After that,
he went out and without telling anyone, left the town, crossed the seas and did a roaring trade. After a few months he returned, quietly settled
down in Nagapattinam.  Punithavathi was waiting for his return.  One
day, travellers had told her that Paramadatta was in Nagapattinam.
Her servants then arranged a palanquin and she went to Nagapattinam.  There, she found her husband married to another woman and they had
a daughter.  Paramadatta came to her, prostrated to her and said in
humble tone:  You are an angel from Kailasa.  I cannot live conjugal
life with you. You are like my mother!  I got married to another woman and I have a daughter and the child had been named after you, as Punithavathi!"

Karaikal Amma returned home.  She immeditately meditated on Siva
and said:  I am having this beautiful body, all these days,  only for the
sake of my husband.  What is the need for this, anylonger?  Please
make me ride of this bodily beauty and give me a body with skeletons
and skull and that is adequate for me!"  Immediately, she became a
body of skeletons and skull only.  She proceeded to Kailasa. While
climbing the mountain, she said:  "This is the Abode of Siva and Uma.
How can I walk with my legs?  She walked with head the entire mountain and reached Siva's Abode.  Siva came running to the gate, telling Uma, "See, Amma (Mother) is coming!  Let us welcome her!"  Both Siva
and Uma came to the gate and with folded hands received the saint.  Karaikal Amma said: O my Father!  Before merging with You, I have only one desire.  I want to see your Cosmic Dance!"  Siva said:  "Amma, that
is done only during the end of the aeon.  If you still wish to see that
please go to Tiru Alangadu ( a place near Chennai, on Bangalore-Chennai railway route).  I shall dance only for your sake!

Karaikal Amma, came walking again with her head, and reached Tiru Alangadu.  They she saw the Cosmic Dance of Siva, all by herself.
She sang a poem called the Elder Decad of Tiru Alangadu, and merged
in Siva's Effulgence!

When Jnana Sambandhar came to Tiru Alangadu, he refused to enter
the town, saying that when my Mother had walked on this earth with
her head, how can I walk with my impure legs?  He chanted songs
in the name of Tiru Alangadu Siva, standing at the entrance of the

The Dance of Siva in Tiru Alangadu is called the Unmatha Natanam,
the Mad Dance at the end of aeon!

(Source:  Periya Puranam, Sekkizhar. Tamil Verses. Saiva Siddhanta
Book Publishing House, Chennai.  Translation and Prose rendering,
my own.)

Arunachala Siva.

Translations and Commentaries by Forum Members / Kovil Mootha Tirupadigam
« on: November 30, 2008, 10:29:55 AM »
Kovil Mootha Tirupadigam, the Elder Decad on Kovil, (Chidambaram),
is a composition in Tiruvachakam, with 10 verses.  After this verse,
the nayaki-nayaka bhava of Manikkavachagar, is complete, and he
speaks about only Sivanubhava, the Experience of Siva on merger.
This was sung in Thillai, Chidambaram.

Verse 7 reads as under:

I was thinking that the Dancer at Golden Court, would take pity on
   my begging and call me and I am cheated!
O you have made me to contemplate your unimaginable form, and
    ruled over me, but how shall be like this, a street-cow, without
    any owner?
To the place, where you and your crowding devotees stay and play,
Can I not come there?  Please call me, O my Life, make it swift!

Verse 9 reads as under:

They laugh. They rejoice. They enjoy the bliss of your Holy Word*,
They describe, they hear from others, they praise your various names,
They wear the Holy Ashes ever, they call you, "O our King of Golden
In their presence, how can I, this lowly dog be bewildered?  I
   trust you only, give it swiftly!

(* Holy Word - Panchakshara.)

(Source: Tiruvachakam, Tamil Verses. Saiva Siddhant Book Publishing
House, Chennai. Translation and Prose rendering, my own.)

Arunachala Siva.