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Translations and Commentaries by Forum Members / Kanchipuram Tiruppugazh
« on: November 15, 2008, 11:15:10 AM »
There is one song among the many songs sung by Saint Arunagiri
Natha, in Kanchipuram.  In Kanchipuram, there is also an exlusive
temple, for Skanda, called  Kumara Kottam.

The verse is on Nayaki-Nayaka Bhava, and it reads like this:
The maiden, on seperation from her lover, Muruga,  sings,

The full moon in the sky, is emitting poisonous rays, poisonous
      rays, worse than a cobra!

The roars of the ocean's waves, and the crying of the snails  on the
         seashore and the oysters' sounds from the sea,
         these  sounds are really roasting me!
I came to you without the feeling of love, but you came to me with love,
            you should come to me and embrace me, saying 'Do not fear!' 
You went with the green peacock and married the green hunter girl,
             and live in all green hills,
You anklets ensure protection to the devotees, who look at your feet,
            you like these small breasts of this maiden,
And stay in Kacchi* and you are loved by Kamakshi who is in the
            Karpaga Vana** and her consort Kacchabesvara!***

(* Kacchi - Tamil classical name for Kanchipuram.  ** Kamakshi
  is said to have done tapas in Karpaga Vana, a garden in Kanchipuram
  and attain the left side of Siva's body in Tiruvannamalai. *** This
  is the name of Siva in Kanchipuram and he is called called, Ekambara,
  the god with eight directions as his attire! )

(Source:  Tiruppugazh Verses, Arunagiri Natha.  Tiruppugazh
  Devotees Group, New Delhi.  Prose rendering, mine.)

Arunachala Siva.       

Poosalar Nayanar belonged to a village called Ninravoor, near
Kanchipuram.  He wanted to build a temple for Siva, and he
went around for funds, but could not get much. So he decided to
build one, in his mind!  With great devotion, he buillt that inner
temple, brick by brick, planted the Siva Linga inside the shrine,
constructed a beautiful golden dome, and a deep tank within the
temple precincts, all in his mind.  Around the same time, the king
of Kanchi was constructing a temple, and after completion, he
asked Siva to come and inaugurate the temple, consecrate, and bless the devotees.  Siva told him, that one temple by Poosalar is already ready
and he had asked for the same date for consecration and so the king
had to wait.  The king was perplexed as to how there could be another
new temple nearby.  So he went around places and came to Ninravur,
and asked the saint.  Poosalar replied that he has constructed a temple
only in his mind and Siva has agreed to inaugurate!  The king waited
there patiently and found on that day, Siva coming with his Uma,
blessing Poosalar and taking him to His Abode, on the bull!

This story incidentaly, is more related to the Verse 4 of Upadesa Saram.  This explains the verse more vividly.

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

Arunachala Siva.     

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Miracles do happen
« on: November 15, 2008, 10:15:10 AM »
This happened many years after Bhagavan Ramana's Maha Nirvana.
Mr. Shadakshari, who was living in New Delhi came to Madras
and was travelling in a car with his wife and others to Tiruvannamalai.
He had Bhagavad Gita and a book on Bhagavan Ramana.  His car
met with a serious accident on the Madras - Vellore road and he
and his wife were admitted into Vellore Mission Hospital.  His wife
found the books lying on their car, which was damaged very badly.
Shadakashri remained in serious condition on that night and doctors
were doing examination.  Next morning, the doctors found him cured
to an extent of 75% without any surgery!  He took medicines and
became totally normal in a few weeks and the family proceeded to
Tiruvannamalai.  His wife strongly believes that the books in the car
and her chanting Bhagavan Ramana's name on that night, sitting
beside her husband in the hospital caused his safety and cure! They
are today one of the best couples in Bangalore, doing a lot of service
in the name of Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi.  They have named the
constructions, hospital etc., in the name of Bhagavan Ramana.

Arunachala Siva.       

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Re: Upadesha Saram
« on: November 15, 2008, 10:04:05 AM »
Dear Dr. Raju and srkudai,

I look at Verse 4 like this.

Why should Bhagavan Ramana says that the meditation, is superior
to the rest, and the mantra japa and poojas are superior to the next?

Take poojas.  These need, bodily strain and strain on your purse,
for which one has to seek wealth outside.  The wick, the oil, the
lamps, for burning a lamp.  Then comes flowers, fruits, leaves,
sandal paste, incense sticks, camphor, a good idol made of gold
or other metals, or a sculpture or a photograph.  Then comes, the
prasadams, cooked rice, ghee, dhal, sweet porridge, salt porridge
et all.  All these require bodily strain and wealth.  Hence these poojas
are the most inferior. 

Take mantra japas.  These needs no outside agencies, but involve
strain for the tongue, teeth and mouth and memorizing the mantras.

What about meditation?  This needs only your mind and body being
still, no activity.  No postures, asanas, no handposes, mudras.  Simply
sit and mentally do the mantras, without even moving the lips. 

Hence, Bhagavan Ramana says:  Alright you want to do prayers, without
self enquiry.  Do it mentally, meditate.

During Bhagavan Ramana's time, all these three different people
came to Him.  There were priests in Mother's Temple, doing poojas.
There were people like Kavyakanta Ganapati Muni, doing crores of
mantra japas.  There were people like Annamalai Swami, Kunju
Swami and others doing Siva Siva japa.  There was Gambhiram Sesha
Iyer doing Rama Rama Japa.  But there were also devotees like
Lakshmana Sarma, Major Chadwick and others who were doing
meditation.  This meditation could even be I am I am, this was
what Bhagavan told them.  He approved all the three types, but
stressed that the meditation, within, without even, moving the lips
and the tongue is the best.

Dhidam ithu poosai* sepaumum* dhyanamumm
Udal Vakku Ulath thozhil Undhipara
Uyar vahum onril onru Undhipara.  (Verse 4)

(* Poosai - Pujas, ** Sepa - Japa)     

Arunachala Siva.

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Re: Miracles do happen
« on: November 15, 2008, 09:47:24 AM »
Dear Ramanaduli,

Bhagavan Ramana is, as you have said, "antharyami" indwelling Self,
within our Hearts.  He is like a mirror, reflecting our wishes, if these
are good ones.  The miracles do happen with the Power of the Presence.

Arunachala Siva.   

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Re: Upadesha Saram
« on: November 14, 2008, 06:28:45 PM »
I view the Verse 3 somewhat like this:

The devotee asks Bhagavan Ramana like this:

Bhagavan!  You say, that actions give results but with seeds inside,
to create further actions.  But, we are afraid of your Brahmastaram,
Who am I?  We are not able to do self enquiry, we are more at home,
with karmas, bhakti, mantra japa etc.,  Is there a way out for us?

Bhagavan says in this verse.  All right, you are not able to leave actions,
okay, you do actions, karmas, bhakti and mantra japa.  But at least,
leave the desire-ship.  Do such actions, if not without 'doership'
but atleast without 'desire-ship'.  Do karma without desires.  And
that is Niskamya Karma.  Such desireless actions, will make your
thinking and contemplation pure, and it will the show way for liberation!

Once when Bhagavan Ramana was strolling on the Hills, a devotee
came to Him and asked:  What is Nishkamya Karma?  Bhagavan Ramana did not answer.  He saw an old tree branch on the way, took it, cut
the ends with His pen-knife, scrapped the outer surface.  He then
took some herbal leaves and polished the stick.  Finally, He took another set of herbs and polished as if it were an oil polish.  The stick shone in brilliance.  After some distance, a shepherd came and asked Bhagavan Ramana: "Swami!  I have lost my stick.  Did you see it anywhere?
Bhagavan Ramana replied:  "Do not worry, take this stick!"  The
shepherd took the stick with profound gratitude and prostrated Him and left the place.  Bhagavan Ramana then told the devotee:  "This is
Nishkamya Karma!"             

Karutthanukku* akkum nitkamiya** kanmam,***
Karuthai**** thiruthi athu Undhipara,
Gadhi vazhi***** kaanpikkum Undhipara.  (Verse 3)

( * Karutthan - Godhead.  ** Nitkamiya - Nishkamya.
   *** kanmam - karmam. **** Karuthai - buddhi.
   ***** Gadhi Vazhi - Way to liberation.)

Arunachala Siva.

We all know about 'Talks' of Munagala Venkatramaiah, which covers
a period of about 4 years when devotees' conversations with Bhagavan
Ramana.  There is one more 'Talks with Sri Ramana Maharshi' which
is the conversations a  devotee and Bhagavan Ramana.
These talks are between Daivarata and Bhagavan Ramana, where
which a few have been incorporated in Kavaya Kanta Ganapati Sastri's
Sri Ramana Gita.  These have taken place, many years before 'Talks'
and a few months before the compilation of Sri Ramana Gita.

I thought that I could give a couple of these conversations from
Kapali Sasri's Sat Darsana Bhashya, to which these are prefixed,
in a book of Sri Ramansramam.

D:  Then whom do you address when you say 'Know thyself'?

B: To whatever you are; to you is given this suggestion, 'know thyself'.
The ego-self, when it feels the necessity to know its own origin or
impelled to rise above itself, takes the suggestion and goes deeper
and there discovers the true Source and Reality if itself.  So the ego-
self beginning to know itself ends in perceiving its Self.

D:  Now you were telling me that the Heart is the centre of the Self......

B: Yes, it is the one supreme centre of the Self.  You need have no
doubt about it. The Real self is there in the Heart, behind the Jiva
or the ego-self.

D: Now be pleased to tell me where it is in the body.

B: You cannot know it with your mind.  You cannot realize it by
imagination, when I tell you here is the centre (Pointing to the
right side of the chest).  The only direct way to realize it is to cease
to fancy and try to be yourself.  Then your realize automatically feel,
that the centre is there.
      This is the centre, the Heart, spoken of in the scriptures as
Hrith-Guha, (the cavity of the Heart), ARUL ULLAM.

D: In no book have I found it seated that it is there.

B: Long after I have come here, I chanced upon a verse in the
Malayalam version of Ashtangahridayam, the standard work on
Ayurveda, wherein the Ojas Sthana is mentioned as located in the
right side of the chest, called the seat of consciousness, (Samvit).
But I know of no other work, which refers to it as being located there.

D: Can I be sure that the ancients meant this centre by the term,

B:  Yes, that is so.  But you should to HAVE rather to locate the
experience.  A man need not go to find out where his eyes are
situated when he wants to see.  The Heart is there ever open to you,
if you care to enter it, ever supporting all your movements, even
when you are unaware.  It is perhaps more proer to say that the
Self is the Heart itself then to say that it is in the Heart.  Really,
the Self is the Centre itself.  It is everywhere, aware of itself as
"Heart", the Self awareness.  Hence I said: "Heart is Thy name."
Hrudayam the naam.

D: Has anyone else addressed the Lord thus, by naming Him the

B: Long after I said this, one day I came across a Hymn in Appar's
(Tiru Navukkarasar) Tevaram, where he mentions the Lord by name,
ULLAM, which is the same as the Heart.

B: The Tantra Sastra calls the Heart as Suryamandala or Solar Orb,
and the Sahasrara, Chandramandala or Lunar Orb.  These symbols
present the relative importance of the two, the Atma Sthana and
the Shakti Sthana.

(Source: Sat Darsana Bhashya and Talks with Maharshi - Kapali
Sastri.  Sri Ramanasramam, Tiruvannamalai.  2006 edition.)

Arunachala Siva.

Tiru Kurippu Thondar, is one of the Saiva Saints.  He was a washerman,
and he lived Kanchipuram.  His name is derived from, 'the one who
understands the devotees' minds and does service'.  He was already
an advanced soul and he used to wash other Siva devotees' clothes
and ochre robes and give them without any fees.  He was waiting for
Siva to come and take him to His Abode.

One day, he found an old Brahmin who was waiting for washing his
clothes.  The Brahmin said:  "I have got only two codpieces.  One
has to be washed and the other one, I am wearing.  If you could
wash it and give me before evening, it will be good, because I am
leaving Kanchipuram at night." 

Tiru Kurippu Thondar readily agreed and went to the river bank.  He
placed the Brahmin's codpiece in the hot water with fuller's earth
and was waiting for it to become white.  Suddenly, rains came and
the clothes became wet.  He became restless and was praying to
Siva for the rains to stop.  The rains continued to lash.

In the evening the Brahmin appeared before him and asked for the
washed and dried codpiece.  Tiru Kurippu Thondar became sad and
told Siva about his inabilty.  The Brahmin grew sulky. The devotee
offered to give new codpieces from home but Siva refused.  Unable
to do anything, the devotee went near the stone slab and hit his
head to kill himself.  Siva then appeared with her consort Uma and
said:  O my son, I came only to test your sincerity in serving the
Siva devotees.  You are now fit to come to my Abode.  He took him,
and the three disappeared as soaring Effulgence into the Space.  The
others who were watching were thrilled at his friend's fortune!

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

Arunachala Siva.   

Sri Ramana Tiruvu Kanda Pathu, Decad of the Holy Vision of Sri
Ramana, is a composition by Muruganar, in Sri Ramana Sannidhi Murai.
It contains 10 verses.

Verse 2 reads like this:

With softness of steel and the strengt of silk cotton, interlaced,
With the buds of your face, blossoming in the Heart and shines!
The devotees pray to your lotus feet, and contemplate on that
   sweetness which makes even sugarcane bitter,
He is Venkata, with that special name, and we are having His

Verse  6 reads like this:

You have the blemishless and the naturalness of your Effulgent State,
This cannot be fathomed even by Vedas, Hari and the lotus seated
  Brahma, the Effulgence of Venkata,
Your feet which is the Permanent Source, and the hearts of the
   devotees who have no strength,   
And their delusions are pulverized, O Venkata, I am having your vision!

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

Arunachala Siva.

Kanda Pathu or Decad of Vision is a composition of Manikkavahagar,
in Tiruvachakam.  This has got 10 verses.

Verse 1 reads like this:

I am deluded by my sense organs, and I would die due to them,
And I am roaming in this world without purpose ready to fall into hell,
But you have come to purfiy my Heart and made it as Sivam,
You ruled over me, gave me endless bliss, I am having a vision of you,
   in Tillai, Chidambram.

Verse 10 reads like this:

You are the five elements, you are the sense organs, you are the
   Substance Pure,
You are in all these mlutifacted things, and you are beyond them,
    without change,
You have removed my desires, you are the Effulgence, the great Green
     Stone, markakadha!
I am having a vision of you, in Tillai, where the Vedas prostrate and
      and adore!

(Source:  Tiruvachakam, Tamil verses, Saiva Siddhanta Book Publishing
House, Chennai.  Translation, my own.)

Arunachala Siva.   

Translations and Commentaries by Forum Members / Teerthamalai Tiruppugazh
« on: November 14, 2008, 10:59:42 AM »
Teerthamalai is a small town in Tamil Nadu, with a Skanda temple.
There is one Tiruppugazh song of Saint Arunagiri Natha on this Skanda.

The poem reads as under:

I am not melting in the songs of your glory,
I am not melting in the songs when others sing your glory,
I am not melting even after knowing the ways of god of death,
I am not melting by memorizing one song per day,
I am not showing love for liberation to be conferred by Siva,
I am not using even my tongue once to speak your glory,
I am only loving this useless life, my mind does not seek the path,
To leave the body and attain liberation at your feet,
I am not understanding the ways of destiny,
But I can only tell you these words, please hear me,
"Muruga's name itself would make one, to dissolve my mind,
And his glory will snap the karmas of good and bad,
He is the son of Unnamulai, the consort of Siva, who burnt Tripura,
And punished Daksha and gave a head of a goat for him!
He is Jnana Sambanhda who vanquished Jainas by sending
A poem on a palmyra leaf, which travelled against the flloods of Vaigai,
And came out with our being burnt in the hot fire!
Please kill my desires and my mind and ego,
And bless me with liberation, with your grace,
O the King of Teerthamalai, the consort of Deiva Nayaki!

(Source:  Tiruppugazh, Tamil Songs. Tiruppugazh Devotees Group,
New Delhi.  meanings my own.)

Arunachala Siva.   

Translations and Commentaries by Forum Members / Skandar Andati
« on: November 14, 2008, 10:47:25 AM »
Kandar Andati or Skandar Andati is a poem of 100 verses, by Saint
Arungiri Natha.  This was sung in Tiruvannamalai, while a debate
was going on between him and Villiputturar, a great Tamil poet.
Villiputturar accepted his defeat to Arunagiri, when he could not
find the meaning of one of the verses, in 1/12 nazhigai, that is 2
minutes.  This poem is very difficult to read or sing and I have mentioned
about it in some other post.  The first word of each line is the same,
but with different meanings, and the last word of the first verse is the
beginning of the second verse!

Verse 1, a prayer to Ganapati who is near the Northern Tower of
Arunachalesvara Temple.  He is called thirai konda Ganapati, because
he took offerings from a robber-king who was plundering Tiruvannamalai, and Ganapati came in his dream and thereatened.
He was scared and he left Tiruvannamalai, leaving all the plundered
wealth and also offering some of wealth to Ganapati.  The verse
reads as under:

"Varanathanai", here it is Iravadham, means Indra who has got the
vehicle of a white elephant, Brahma, the devas, and

"Varanthanai", here it is Conchshell, means Vishnu, who has got
in his lotus hands a white conchshell, and Siva, who punished Daksha, as Veerabhadra, his Son,

"Varanathanai", here it is flagmast of Rooster, I pray to Muruga who
has this, Siva's Son, who loved his brother, who is in North Tower,

"Varanathanai", it is Vinayaka, who has got a face of an elephant,
and who took the offerings from the robber king,  I pray!
There are 100 such poems in this Gem of a composition by Saint
Arunagiri Natha!

(Source:  Skandar Andati, Tiruppugazh Devotees Group, New Delhi.)

Arunachala Siva.         

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Children's Day 2008
« on: November 14, 2008, 10:00:27 AM »
Today is Children's Day, 14th November.  I was thinking about the
children, who came in Bhagavan Ramana's life.  There could be many
more, about whom details are not available.

The first batch is, Vilacheri Rangan, Sab Jan Wahab and Mani Iyer,
the famous Pokkiri Mani, rogue Mani!  These were His childhood
friends and they all came to see Him on the Hills later.  Then there
is the neighbourhood girl, whom Mother Azhagmma had said, would
be His wife!  But the girl's mother, had said:L  "O how can I give my
daughter to this chap, who is wearing a koupina and doing oddjobs
to mother?" 

On the Hills, there were many children.  There were urchins who
threw stones at Him in Patala Lingam.  Then, there was the boy,
who saw the tattered towel of Bhagavan Ramana and mischeivously
said: "Please give this towel, the Governor is asking for it!"  Bhagavan
Ramana said:  "No, tell Governor that I am not giving the towel!"
There was again a terrribe boy who urinated on Bhagavan Ramana
and went away running with "his achievement and glory"!  Then
there was a young boy, who came and pitied Bhagavan Ramana's
"poor condition" and said:  "O You have also come away from home
like me!  You come with me as a child labour to my boss.  He will
give you work for food sometime.  Thereafter, he would give 3 pica
per day!"

Then, there were girl children.  Rajamma, who used to paint nicely
and who played with Bhagavan Ramana.  Bhagavan combed her hair
and put two plaits on her hair!  She has later, made a beautiful painting
of Bhagavan Ramana, sitting on a peacock like Skanda.  This painting
is even now available in the Lunch Hall of Asram.  Then, there was
Chellmmal, Echammal's daughter, who carried  food to Bhagavan 
Ramana from her grand mother. 

Later in the Old Hall, one young boy came and got cured of his
blindness, and another of his night blindness.  One young boy
gave a scholarly lecture in front of Bhagavan Ramana on Vedas
and Upanihads for more than two hours.  After that he had kept
quiet and looked at Bhagavan Ramana and cried:  "I am not yet
self realized.  Please grace me!"

Wordworth says in his Ode on Immortality:

The child is father of the man,
And I wish my day to be,
Bound each to each with natural piety!
There was the time,
When meadows, groves and streams,
Apparelled in celestial light,
In the glory and the freshness of a dream!

Arunachala Siva. 

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Miracles do happen
« on: November 14, 2008, 09:45:09 AM »
Kuzhumani Narayana Sastri was a great Sanskrit scholar.  He had
met both Bhagavan Ramana and also Seshadri Swami.  He has written
a biography on Seshadri Swami.

Once, Sastri went to see Bhagavan Ramana on the Hills.  He bought
some plantains and went to Arunachalesvara Temple first and then
on seeing Ganapati there, he mentally offered one plantain in the
bunch to Ganapati, without separately picking it out.  He then went
to see Bhagavan Ramana and offered Him, the bunch.  When the bunch
was to be taken in, by the attendant, Bhagavan Ramana said:
Please come.  Take this one plantain out.  It is for Ganapati.  He
gave that one banana to Sastri and told him to offer it to Ganapati!

Again, when Sastri  went to Bhagavan Ramana, later with the
manuscript of Ramayana prose translation done by him, he had
decided to keep quiet and waited for Bhagavan Ramana's words,
to indicate His approval for the work done by him.   Bhagavan Ramana
on seeing him, merely said:  "Is it not Ramayana translation made by you?  Please read!"  Sastri was flooded with joy and he began to read
his prose translation!

(Source:  Arunachala's Ramana, Boundless Ocean of Grace, Volume 1,
Sri Ramansramam, Tiruvannamalai.)

Arunachala Siva.

The teachings of Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi / Re: The art of Self Enquiry
« on: November 14, 2008, 09:31:41 AM »
Dear Ramanaduli,

No mind situation is excellent and is fit for Self Realization.  But
madness of people in the world is due to fractured mind.  Mind
is still there, but it is fractured and it is all the more worse!

Arunachala Siva.