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Messages - Subramanian.R

Translations and Commentaries by Forum Members / Tiruchengode Tiruppagazh
« on: November 17, 2008, 11:32:19 AM »
Tiruchengode is a place in Salem District in Tamil Nadu.  There is
a Siva Temple, where Siva is called Ardhanareesvara, the half woman.
The same concept is there with Triuvannamalai also.  Arunagiri Natha
has sung a song on the Skanda of this temple, in Tiruppugazh.  The
song reads as under:

I want to come to you in full devotion, without thinking about the
    five senses,
When shall I leave these women, with lust and poisonous eyes,
   and breasts like two lotuses,
And tresses which are swarmed by bees for the flowers on them?
I want to think of only you, with ever increasing love, and not
  run around thinking about these women,
O son of Siva, who dances in the golden court, and the one who
   wears the 'kadamba' flowers!
You have removed the karmas of those those prostrate you, with
    your sharp beautiful Spear!
Wherever I go and whenever I say 'Skanda' you should come
   with your Rooster flag!
O god, who lives amidst lushy paddy fields, in Tiruchengode,
    o my Master!

(Source:  Tiruppugazh, Tamil, Arunagiri Natha.  Tiruppugazh
  Devotees Group, New Delhi.  Prose rendering my own.)

Arunachala Siva.   

Kurumba Nayanar was tribal chieftain.  He was always praying to
Siva, the Lord with the Bull.  He had heard about Saint Sundaramoorthy
and his famous poem listing 60 saints of Siva.  He mentally held him
as his Guru and was constantly chanting Siva Panchakshara every day.
He used to host any number of the Siva devotees who come to his

One day, he mentally divined that Siva is calling Sundaramoorthy
back to Kailas and he is ascending the White Elephant sent by
Siva to go to the Abode.  He decided that he should not live any
further on this earth, without his Guru.  He declined food and water
and was chanting Panckahkshari.  He applied Raja Yoga techniques
and controlled his breath and was seeing Siva and Parvati.  Siva
without being able to put up with this kind of self-punishment by
his devotee, appeared before him with Uma and took him to His

(Source:  The stories of  63 Siva Saints, Tamil, Saiva Siddhanta
Book Publishing House, Chennai. )

Arunachala Siva. 

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Miracles do happen
« on: November 17, 2008, 11:11:41 AM »
Once K.K. Nambiar who was staying in Tiruvannamalai and seeing
Bhagavan Ramana, everyday, had a dream.  In the dream, he saw
the young Goanese student, who was sitting in the Hall, doing pranayama, when sparks rose from his abdoment and rose to the
head and burst.  Nambiar saw in the dream Bhagavan admonishing
the boy:  Enough of these gymnastics, please do Self enquiry, as
enunciated by me!"  The dream had ended.

Next morning, Nambiar went to the Hall and even before entering the
Hall, he found the Goanese boy at the entrance.  He advised the
boy not to have this raja yoga methods, as advised to him through
Nambiar by Bhagavan Ramana.  The boy stood dumbfounded and
said: Sir, I was about ask Bhagavan Ramana about the same thing.
He has given me His advices through you, thank you very much!
Needless to say that the boy did not proceed with that practice of
Raja yoga and turned to self enquiry.  The boy's name is Sridhar.
Nambiar meets him again after several years in Bombay.

Bhagavan Ramana thus gave advices to the seekers through another
person's dream!

(Source:  The Guiding Presence of Sri Ramana, K.K. Nambiar.
Sri Ramansramam, Tiruvannamalai.)

Arunachala Siva.   

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Re: Death and birth
« on: November 17, 2008, 10:59:16 AM »
Dear S. Subramanian,

For Brahma Jnanis, who have killed their egos and with the minds,
that state of self realization, is the death.  They live further if they
want or not.  The death of the body, where the mind and ego still
lives, is the real death.  But this death gives further births, or a period
in heavan or hell, with further births.  If the mind and the ego are
vanquished, that is the 'real death' and Brahma Jnanis do not bother
about body death at all.

Arunachala Siva.   

I have posted various aspects of Arunachala Akshara Mana Malai
of Bhagavan Ramana.  About the meaning and purport of these
verses, I have already written, that Bhagavan Ramana had said
that He did not write them with a pre-meditated plan and the whole
thing was an inspired composition.  He has told devotees, that whatever
meaning they understand from these verses, it is alright, according
to one's own bhava.  Muruganar has later made a commentary and this
was got approved by Bhagavan Ramana.  This commentary is a
wonderful book of about 100 pages and contains the meaning,
more than one meaning for certain verses.  This reminds me of
Tiruvachakam.  After its completion, before even Manikkavachagar
had gone to Chidambaram, for merging in the effulgence of Siva-
Nataraja, the priests of the temple came to know about the book
and they wanted to know its meaning.  The Chozha king who came
to know about the composition, got the verses engraved on golden
plates and was waiting for the saint poet to come to Chidambram,
to understand its meaning!

When Manikkavachagar arrived in Chidambram, he was taken into
the temple and further into the Goldern Court of Nataraja, after
proper respects from the king and the priests.  Then with all
humility, they asked the saint poet about the meaning of Tiruvachakam,
from the first poem, Siva Puranam.  Manikkavachagar thought for a
while, tears flowed profusely from his eyes, and he pointed to Nataraja, and told the king and the priests:  " For this, the meaning is He only!"
Then, he disappeared into the Effulgence, that engulfed the whole
temple!  The King was horripilated and told the priests, "Please
have these gold plates, kept under the three steps that lead to
the inner sanctorum, from the left and let them remain there with
Siva-Natraraja and the saint poet permanently!"  Accordingly,
the steps were removed, and underneath the gold plates containing
the inscriptions of Tiruvachakam were kept in a pit and the steps
were refixed.  These steps are even today called in Tamil, "Tiruvachaka
Padi"  - Steps of Tiruvachakam!

Perhaps, if devotees had pestered for the meaning of Arunachala
Akshra Mana Malai, Bhagavan Ramana would have either shown
His Heart or the Hills and merged into it.  We would have lost
further years of His Presence and teachings, in Upadesa Saram,
Arunachala Stuti Panchakam, remaining four verses and the great
Sad Darsanam.

(Source:  The age of Manikkavachagar and Tiruvachakam, Swami
Vedachalam.  (an old book)

Arunachala Siva.           

Manakkanjarar ardent Siva devotee living near Tiruvarur.  He
was from a warrior class.  He had no issues and prayed to Siva
intently for many months and soon his wife became pregnant and
gave birth to a beautfiul girl baby.  The baby grew into an attractive
girl and her father fixed a boy called Kalikkaman, from the nearby
town.  The wedding was fixed and the parents and the girl started
to the near by town to celebrate the wedding.  All the arrangements
had already been done.  On the previous evening, a hermit arrived
at their house.  The hermit was fed nicely and Mankkanjarar asked
him whether he needs any gift.  The hermit told him that he wants
nice long flowing hairs of a young girl for his sacred thread! 
Manakkanjarar did not even hesitate for a moment, cut the long
hairs of his daughter and gave them to the hermit.  The poor
girl, the sobbing mother and he, then went to the wedding hall.
As the girl duly dressed, entered the wedding hall, the hermit
appeared there and blessed the girl.  Lo and behold, her hairs
grew as long dark tresses as before.  Manakkanjarar prostrated
before the hermit and then there appeared Siva and Uma on Nandi,
and they took away the devotee in an effulgence that spread the entire
marriage hall!

(Source:  Periya Puranam, Tamil Verses, Saiva Siddhanta Book
Publishing House, Chennai.  Prose rendering mine.)

Arunachala Siva.     

We have already seen, why Arunachala Akshara Mana Malai
was inspired by Bhagavan Ramana:

1. In praise of Arunachala.
2. In brief verses of two lines.
3. In 108 verses.
4. In alphabetically beginning words.
5. In Tamil.
6. In Bhakti bhava, with doctrine of Adviata interlaced.

We shall now see, why Bhagavan Ramana called it, Mana Malai,
or a bridal garland.

The union between a man and his wife was always through exchange
of garlands, from the historic times.  In Vedic times, while the Fire,
Agni was the Witness, only wedding garlands were exchanged, and
the couple took seven steps around the fire, Sapta Padi and the wedding
was consummated.  The practice of mangala-sutram, thali in Tamil,
either in yellow thread with a turmeric piece in the middle or later
with gold chains with 'mangala sutram' was not there in Vedic times,
and it is a practice of post Vedic times.  This gave further choices of
a ring etc., in later times.

Bridal garland has got a special place in nayaki nayaka bhava songs
of great saint poets like Manikkavachagar, Arunagiri Natha, Andal,
Nammazhwar, Tayumanavar and Akka Maha Devi and in a few Tevaram

Tiru Navukkarasar, Appar as he is popularly called sings in a Tevaram

O Siva of Tiruvidai Maruthur, please come with your own garland,
Do not take that from your chest, lest Uma your concorporate would
   suspect you,
Do not take that from your head, lest Ganga would suspect you,
Please come with your own garland and exchange that with mine!

In another song, Tirunavukkarasar, sings about the glory of bridal
garland of songs, instead of flowers.  He sings:

O Siva of Tiruvarur, I am not giving floral garland, lest it may last only
   for a day,
I am not giving you a golden garland, lest it may be stolen,
I am giving you a Tamil garland of songs, lest it may not be lost at
   any time!
O my deluded mind, give him your garland of songs, and praise him!

Akka Mahadevi, a famous Veera Saiva poetess of Karnataka is even
more shocking!  She sings:

Mother! other men are thorns, under the smooth leaves,
I cannot touch them, go near them, nor trust them, nor speak
   to them confidences,
Because they have all thorns in their chests, I cannot take any man
   in my arms,
But my Lord, white as jasmine and coming with a garland of jasmines,
     He is Chenna Mallikarjuna* the Lord of the Jasmine flowers!

(* Chenna Mallikarjuna, Siva in Sri Sailam.)

Arunagiri Natha calls this wedding as Valli Sanmarga, the Way of
Union of Valli with Muruga.  The grand union of individual soul with
the Self or the Super Soul.

(Source:  Tevaram Songs, Saiva Siddhanta Book Publishing House,
Chennai.  Sri Arunachala Akshara Mana Malai, Viruthi Urai, Commentary, Muruganar.  Sri Ramansramam, Tiruvannamalai.  Speaking of Siva,
A.K. Ramanujan, Penguin Publication, UK.)

Arunachala Siva.   

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Songs on the Holy Feet
« on: November 16, 2008, 01:26:06 PM »
Songs on the Holy Feet, Tiru Padam Kanda Tiran, is a brief composition
of 6 verses.  There is no comparable composition in Tiruvachakam.

Verse 1 reads like this:

On the day of Tiru Adirai* in the star of Punarvasu, the Vedanta
The Old Principle, you were born as a pious Brahmin, to purify my
You took hold of me, this destitute who was without any support,
   this Wonderous nectar of Wisdom,
Is like the wonder of mercury**, I see it as a day-dream!

(* Tiru Adirai, is the previous star.  On that day, at midnight, when
Punarvasu, the next star was the reigning star during the night,
Bhagavan Ramana was born in Tiruchuzhi.  ** In the olden days,
siddhas used to mix mercury with some herbs, and this compound,
would convert even the baser metals like copper and silver into gold!)

Verse 3 reads like this:

I am deluded with this mind but you came as hot iron to remove
     this water of body,
You came as a Sublime Principle, which is appearing within the Heart,
You shine as the Effulgence rising to the sky, and I keep this as my
I see this Siva Padam, the Source that is Siva, as honey within me!

(Source:  Sri Ramana Sannidhi Murai, Tamil, 1998 edition,
Muruganar.  Sri Ramansramam,  Tiruvannamalai. Translation my own.)

Arunachala Siva.

Sri Ramana Neethal Vinnappam. Request for Leaving, by Poet
Muruganar has got 50 verses and we have seen a few verses
so far.  We shall see another couple of verses today.

Verse 3 reads as under:

O King, you loved me and took hold of me, saying, 'Do not fear'.
O the one who has got Parasakti on his left side, you snapped
    my old sins of Sanchayam,
O Venkata, with anklets decked by rubies and flowers, please hold me,
Please place me on your flowers like feet, as your servant.

Verse 4 reads like this:

I took this falsity of world, with great desires, even then,
You took me to the service of your golden feet, even without my desire,
O Venkata, please hold me to your flood of grace,
Please put up with and forgive this childish wastrel's faults with your

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

Arunachala Siva.

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Yoga Vasishtam
« on: November 16, 2008, 12:59:57 PM »
I have already written about 10 slokas of Viveka Choodamani,
selected by Mouni Sadhu, (M. Sodousky) and approved by Bhagavan
Ramana Maharshi.  Bhagavan Ramana has also selected 9 slokas,
in Sivananda Lahari. Bhagavan Ramana has also selected 10 slokas,
from Yoga Vasishtam.  These are from Yoga Vasishtam, Upasana
Prakaranam,  Verses 17-26 of Sargam 18.  These are:

Slokas 20 and 23 are incorporated in Sad Darsanam, Supplement
Verse 26.

Slokas 24 and 26 are incorporated in Sad Darsanam, Supplement,
Verse 27.

The remaining six verses are as under:

1. Steady in the state of fullness, which shines when all desires
are given up, and peaceful in the state of freedom in life, act
playfully in the world, O Raghava!

2. Inwardly free from all desires, dispassionate and detached, but
outwardly acrtive in all directions, act playfull in the world, O Raghava!

3. Outwardly, full of zeal in action buy free from any zeal at heart,
active in apperance but inwardly, work  playfully in the world,
O Raghava!

4. Free from egoism, which mind detached as in sleep, pure
like the Space, ever untainted, act playfully in the world, O Raghava!

5. Conducting yourself nobody and with kindly tenderness, outwardly
conforming to conventions, but inwardly renouncing all, act playfully
in the world, O Raghava!

6. Quite unattached at heart, but for all appearance acing as if
with attachment, inwardly cool but outwardly full of fervour, act
playfully in the world,  O Raghava!

(Source:  Guiding Presence of Sri Ramana, K.K. Nambiar.
Sri Ramanasramam, Tiruvannamalai.)

Arunachala Siva.   

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Re: Miracles do happen
« on: November 16, 2008, 11:27:01 AM »
Dear Dr. Raju,

I am happy to learn about this incident, which is a news for me.
Bhagavan Ramana is not only a water diviner but also the diviner
of the Self within us!

Arunachala Siva.

Translations and Commentaries by Forum Members / Kandhar Andati
« on: November 16, 2008, 11:22:02 AM »
Kandar Andati, (Skandar Andati) which comprises of 100 songs,
most difficult in form and content, has got many more excellent

Verse 80 reads like this:

Sri- rama-rama, O Sri Rama, for you, the beautiful, fragrant
   tulsi garlands are most suited,
Sri-rama-rama, O Siva, who has got matted locks, for you,
    the Ganga with waves and foams is most beautiful,
Sri-rama-rama, for Muruga, who pierced the Surapadma who stood
    as Mango tree, with green leaves,
Sri-rama-rama, well ornamented heads of devas, who are praying
    to you after the war, are most beautiful!

(Kandhar Andati - Tamil verses.  Tiruppugazh Devotees Group,
   New Delhi.  Translation, my own.)

Arunachala Siva.

Translations and Commentaries by Forum Members / Velligaram Tiruppugazh
« on: November 16, 2008, 11:14:37 AM »
Velligaram is a small village near Tiruttani, one of the six famous
abodes of Skanda.  There is a Tiruppugazh of Arunagiri Natha,
about Skanda of this village temple.

O, you went to Valli, with face like lotus and eyes like arrows,  and
                    her in the millet fileds, in Velligaram, and told her:
"Please come, my town is only 20 miles* away, and there is
           only a tank and paddy fields in between", O lovely Muruga!
'O Father, this is my offering' so saying Kannappa, gave you the
     saliva ridden flesh and you ate that and did a lot of divine plays**,
                  He is Pure Siva and you are his son!
When Saint Nakkirar*** praised you as a Master of Hills, you took
   him in a flood of grace and bliss and youn are beyond hundred
   thousand types of living beings!
He is having a mace, bow and arrow, a disc and a conchshell,
      he is Gopala, Devaki's son, he moved with the poundstone like
      a thief, but stood as an innocent boy before Mahabali, he
      is Narayana and you punished his son****
You stay and play  in Vayalur***** with paddy fields, and went
      to Velligaram to seek Valli, O Muruga, with the Spear,  the darling
      of devas!

(This song gives details of some avataras of Vishnu.  * The twenty
miles are indicated as 3.5. kathams, an old measurement. **  Divine
plays of Siva with Kannappa, are the stories of getting blood in one
eye first and after Kannappa gave his eye, the blood oozed from the
second eye and Kannappa was about to give his second eye and then
Siva appeared before him. *** Saint Nakkirar was doing penance in
a jungle near Madurai, and when his concentration wavered, a
demon took him and imprisoned.  When Saint Nakkirar sang Tiru
Murugatruppadai, a Tamil song, Muruga appeared before him and
saved him. ****  Muruga punished Brahma, Narayana's son, for
not knowing the purport of Pranava mantra. ***** Vayalur is a
town near Tiruchy where there is a Muruga temple.)

(Source: Tiruppugazh, Tamil Songs, Tiruppugazh Devotees Group,
New Delhi.  Prose rendering, mine.)

Arunachala Siva. 

Translations and Commentaries by Forum Members / Songs for Leaving
« on: November 16, 2008, 10:48:09 AM »
Neethal Vinnappam, Songs for Leaving by Manikkavachagar, is a
composition of 50 verses.  We shall see a couple of more verses now.

Verse 7 reads like this:

You have taken even this liar as a substance, and took over me,
O the Truth, who is the king of Uttara Kosa Mangai!
Please hold me, the one who is having dark poison on his throat,
O the Red, who cleanses the karmas of this lowly soul!

Verse 8 reads like this:

I am like an ant caught in the midst of a log burning from both sides,
I am with useless head, Please hold me,
O king of Uttara Kosa Mangai, O god of three worlds,
The holder of a Spear with three heads* who shines before me.

(* Trident)

(Source: Tiruvachakam, Manikkavachagar, Tamil. Saiva Siddhanta
Book Publishing House, Chennai.)

Arunachala Siva.

Then some more questions are raised about Akshara Mana Malai.
Why Bhagavan Ramana, composed it in Tamil?  Why there should
be 108 verses?

All saint poets composed poems only in their mother tongue.
Sankara composed it in Sanskrit, instead of in Tamil, (there was
no Malayalam language in those days.  Malayalam came around
10th Century AD.), because He was speaking in Sanskrit, and
Sanskrit was His mother tongue. Secondly, Tamil is as old as
Sanskrit.  While Sanskrit Stotras are always in the form of mantra-s,
these need special purity to sing.  Only a few Bhakti songs of Sankara
like Sivananda Lahari and Subrahmanya Bhujangam, are without any
built in mantra-s. Whereas, Tamil, and for that matter all non-Sanskrit
languages are for commoners, full of devotion and melting.  This
is fit for both Sadhus and devotees.  Hence Bhagavan Ramana sang
in Tamil.  He also composed in Telugu and Malayalam, a good number
of songs.  Tevarams say that both Sanskrit and Tamil are the eyes
of Siva.  All Sanskrit verses are Sastras and mantras, whereas Tamil
or non-Sanskrit verses are Stotras, prayers fit for any one.

Then, why 108 verses?  The Godhead as per Hindu pantheon is
adored with various groups of letters.  Siva, with five letters of
Panchakshari, Uma, with 15 letters of Sri Vidya Pancha Dasakshari,
Narayna, with eight letters of Ashtakshari, and Skanda with six
letters of Shadakshari, and Ganapati with a single letter of Om.
But for all these gods, 108 and 1008 names are usually given,
and verses are composed in 108 verses too.  Manikkavachagar
says in Tiruvachakam, "Let us sing Him, who has not got one name and
one form, but with 1000 names!   Hence Bhagavan Ramana also sang
108 verses in praise of Arunachala, in Akshara Mana Malai.       
(Source:  Arunachala Akshara Mana Malai, commentary by Muruganar.
Tamil.  Sri Ramanasramam, Tiruvannamalai.)

Arunachala Siva.