Friday, January 30, 2009

SVS 240 [Neta - 224] (24.5)

224. OM NETRE NAMA: नेत्रे नम:
Rescues Bhaktas.

We are in Madyarangam, near Shivasamudram, a popular tourist spot. It appears the life saving Amrut kalash is kept deep below and is guarded by Durga and Anjaneya. Garuda is अल्सो guarding. Neta means rescuer from samsaram ocean. In Matsya Avatar He rescued Maharishi and other species. Swami Desika composed many pasurams here, after seeing river Kaveri flowing beautifully. We desire to view the Lord in our last moments; but we might not be fortunate. So, in Bhishma sthuti, Bhishma says that by appearing in Kurukshetra war, all the warriors on both sides got Moksham.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

SVS 239 [Nyayo - 223] (24.4)

223. OM NYAYA NAMA: न्याय नम:
Does in conformity with justice.

We are in Madya Rangam.
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Many sages have meditated here. Swami Ramanuja, Swami Nigamanta Mahadesika and other Acharyas have trod this place. After all, the Lord's greatness is propagated by Bhagavatas' worship! Agastya brought Kaveri in this World. A Demon tried to stop the flow. Lord Shiva killed the demon and allowed the river Kaveri to flow. That is why this place is called Shivasamudram. Very small temple, but a great Lord Sri Ranganatha is gracing. In the ensuing month of February, Brahmotsavam festival is to be celebrated. A place to be visited. Nyaya means never violates Dharma. He took Avatars to establish Dharma. Sri Rama was an embodiment of Dharma. Observing one's varna -asrama, is Dharma. When Devas surrendered to the Lord to protect them from Asuras, the Lord fought the asuras and chased them. Malyavan, an associate of Ravana, was running after defeat and the Lord was chasing. Malyavan, appealed to Sriman Narayana to observe Kshatriya Dharma of not killing those running away from the battle! The Lord replied that it was funny for Malyavan to mention Dharma after practicing Adharma; besides, He was not Kshatriya at that time [He would take Kshatriya form in Sri Rama Avatar] and His Dharma was to protect those surrendered! 'Krishnam dharmam sanatanam'. Bharata came to Sri Rama in the forest and mercifully prayed to accept Kingdom and return to Ayodya. At that time sage Jabali, in support of Bharata, told that since Dasarata, who had ordered Sri Rama to go to forest was dead and gone, Sri Rama could return. Sri Rama was angered by this and condemned the sage for preaching Adharma!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

SVS 238 [Sriman - 222] (24,3)

222. OM SRIMATHE NAMA: श्रीमते नम:

Usually, SVS lecture starts at 6:45 AM and there used to be overlapping of BG lecture, which is to finish by 6:45 AM. But today, immediately after BG was over, I found that SVS was already over. I do not know whether there was any revised timings for SVS or whether the clock timings in the Two Channels {Podhigai and Jaya} are so different! Anyway, I could not listen to SVS today [28th January 2009].

Friday, January 23, 2009

SVS 236 [Agrani - 220] (24.1)

220. OM AGRANYE NAMA: अग्रण्ये नम:
Carries devotees to superior echelon.

WE can see Lord Sri Narasimha on Gajakesari yantram, as per shastras. This is unique. Agrani means leads from the front. He takes the devotees to that place where they can always enjoy Him. For that we have to surrender unto Him. He led Pandavas to victory.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

SVS 235 [Udaradhi: - 219] (23.9)

219. OM UDARADHIYE NAMA: उदारधिये नम:
Possesses excellent knowledge.

We are in Srirangapatna, near Mysore. Apart from being a tourist spot, it is also considered as a Kshetram. It is historically famous and here Tipu Sultan was killed. Lord Sri Ranganatha is reclining on Adisesha. Udaradhi means He is bountiful in imparting knowledge to others. Udara means bountiful donor. The Lord grants the highest reward of Moksham. But the Lord regards His devotees as udara. He possesses the knowledge and grants them to His devotees so that they can attain Him. Knowledge expands by granting to others. Pancharatra shastra and Vaikanasa shastra are knowledge imparted to others to worship Him. All these are based on Vedas.

gurur-guruthamO dhAma sathyah sathya-parAkramah |
nimiSHO-animiSHah sragvee vAchaspthir-udAradheeh || (23)

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

SVS 234 [Vachaspati - 218] (23.8)

218. OM VACHASPATAYE NAMA: वाचस्पतये
By delivering Vedas, attained fame as great preacher.

Swami Sankaracharya had commented taking vachaspati udaradi as a single Divine name. But Swami Parasara Bhatta has counted these as two Divine names. Vachaspati means God of speech or knowledge. We are at Srirangapatna, which is also like Srirangam, amidst Kaveri's two branches. The Lord here also is Sri Ranganatha. Temple is rich in sculptures.

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The Lord has blessed lord Brahma and Saraswati with knowledge. Swan will never take to ponds, visited by crows, even if they were pure otherwise. Likewise, scholars never appreciate the words of persons if they have used the speech for praising other than the Lord, even if they were well learned.
On 25th January 2009, in Chettipunyam on the road to Chengalpet, one day Laksharchanai is being performed for the benefit of students appearing for ensuing examinations. All are welcome.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

SVS 233 [Sragvi - 216 continued] (23.7)


Today's [20th January 2009] lecture was a repeat of yesterday's lecture.

We can notice Garuda and Hanuman made of the same wood, in the same sannidhi.

Monday, January 19, 2009

SVS 232 [Sragvi -216] (23.7)

216. OM SRAGVINE NAMA: स्रग्विणे नम:
Always adorn with the necklace Vyjayanti.

Garuda's glory is boundless. He is an embodiment of Vedas. Swami Desika has composed two stotrams on Garuda - Garuda dandakam and Garuda panchasat. Here, the earlier ancient Garuda vahana was lost and a new Garuda vahana was made; and out of the same wood, Hanuman vahana also was made. We can see both together in Bindignaville. It is a fact that worshiping Garuda with red vastram, white jasmine flowers and ghee lamp, will bring in divinity in the house. We have to meditate on the Lord, adorn with many garlands and necklaces. Sri Andal offered garlands.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

SVS 231 [Nimisho - 215] (23.5)

215. OM NIMISHAYA NAMA: निमिषाय नम:
Does not see and grace enemies of devotees.

About 18 KMs from Nagamangala is Bindignaville Kshetram.
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The Lord is Sri Somya Kesava. Here Vainateya [Garuda], the vehicle of the Lord is more famous. The serpent coiled conch removes Nagadosha at Nagamangala. Here also Garuda removes Nagadosha of devotees.

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When we visit temples, the wide open eyes of the Lord welcome us. Thus we get His grace. This is the substance of the Divine name nimisha. When the Lord was in Dwaraka, Duryodana came to approach for aid in the ensuing war between Kauravas and Pandavas. Sri Krishan was asleep [pretending] and so Duryodana had to wait. His ego did not permit him to choose the seat at the feet of the Lord; and he sat on a seat at His head! Later Arjuna came and he picked up seat at His feet. When the Lord woke up, naturally, He saw Arjuna at His feet and enquired. Later, He saw Duryodana. Thus the Lord does not want to see enemies of His devotees and grace them!

On 13th Januaray 2009, Iskcon is arranging for Rath Yatra of Puri at Mylapore, Chennai, from 3.00 PM. All are requested to attend and recieve the blessings of Lord Sri Jagannatha.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

SVS 230 [ Satyaparakrama - 214] (23.4)

214. OM SATYA PARAKRAMAYA NAMA: सत्य पराक्रमाय नम:
Possesses real power, unaffected by His accomplishment with Manu and others.

His valour is not wasted when rescuing His devotees. This divine name suggests that He does what His devotees expect Him to do without fail. Another unique feature in Nagamangala Kshetram is that on Sankaranthi day, every year, we can worship Sun rays falling at Sri Kesava's feet. Also on every Shivaratri night, about 100,000 lamps are lit at the Vijayasthambam. Satya parakrama also means the Lord blesses His devotees in the image they desire and grant the boons they desire. Like a teacher is happy with the student who follows his instructions, the Lord is happy when we follow His instructions. In the sloka 'dakshinya moortya..' in Hayagriva stotram, Swami Vedanta Desika says that Bruhaspati, Saraswati and Dakshinamurty [lord Shiva] get their learning from a fraction of the knowledge of the Lord.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

SVS 229 [Dhama - 212, Satya - 213] (23.2, 23.3)

212. OM DHAMNE NAMA: धाम्ने नम:
Repository of everything.

213. OM SATYAYA NAMA: सत्याय नम:
During pralaya [great deluge] helped Manu and others, who sought refuge.

We are at Nagamangal Sri Kesava temple. There is a sannidhi for Sri Narasimha.

Sri Thayar here is Sri Sowmya Nayaki Thayar.

She matches the Lord in beauty. This temple has a sannidhi for Swami Koil Kandhadai Annan [கோயில் கந்தாடை அண்ணன்]. The reason for the name Nagamangala for this Kshetram can be seen here. There is a very large mandapam in front of the main sannidhi of Sri Kesava. All processions of the Lord start from here. On the ceiling we can notice 108 conchs [shanku சங்கு ] carved. Even those who do not have religious belief, can visit this temple for the archaeological splendour and beauty of sculptures. Among these 108 conchs, the prominent one is sculpted at the centre, facing down. We can notice Adisesha, serpent King, coiling it.

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This is the reason for the name Nagamangala for this place. All planetary ill effects are solved by visiting and worshiping Sri Kesava and Adisesha. This is the experience of many. There is sannidhi for Alwars also.

Once a King of Pandya, Manu was having his evening prayers in Kruthamala river [it is now extinct] in Madurai. He found a small Fish in his hands, which asked him to put it in a bowl of water. It started growing and became so large that it had to be left in ocean. At that time the Fish, the Lord in disguise, asked the King to gather most important species and carry them in a boat, as in the next few days great deluge, Pralayam, was to happen and world would be immersed. These species would be saved and used for creation after deluge was over. The King did accordingly and the boat was connected to the horn on the Fish and was protected till the deluge was over. This is the reason for Fish emblem in Pandya Kingdom. Thus the Lord's Divine names dhama and satya.
Swami Ramanuja, while in Karnataka, had to debate with many pundits of other philosophies. To mark his victory in such debates, he got pillars erected and called them Vijayasthamba. There are sannidhis for Sri Krishna and Sri Rama in Sri Sowmya Kesava temple.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

SVS 228 [Gururgurutamo - 211 Continued] (23.1 contd.)


Today's [7th January 2009] lecture is also from Nagamangala Kshetram. The Lord here has been worshiped by Swami Ramanuja. One can notice the mercy in the face of the Lord. Renovation works are going. Temple is more than 1000 years old. Swami Ramanuja installed Vijayasthamba [Victory pillars] at various temples and one such is seen here.
It is widely believed that by worshiping here, sarpa dosha or naga dosha [curse of cobras] is removed.
Guru tama: means the best of Acharyas. The Lord rescued Vedas immersed in ocean, by taking Sri Matsya Avatar. In Dasavatara stotram, Swami Vedanta Desika says that when the Lord in the form of a huge fish was searching for Vedas, His eyes, like lotus flowers, swayed amidst waves of the ocean! The Lord is Mother, Father, Guru and Friend.

Monday, January 5, 2009

SVS 227 [Gururgurutamao - 211] (23.1)

211. OM GURUR GURU TAMAYA NAMA: गुरुर्गुरु तमाय नम:
Since Brahma and others were taught, greater Acharya than any Acharya.

After visiting Ahobilam, we are tracing the path trod by Swami Ramanuja in Karnataka, where he spent many years. Melkote and Thirunarayanapuram are considered as fort of Swami Ramanuja. We will be visiting many temples in Karnataka. Sloka 23 of SVS deals with Matsya avatar. We are now in Nagamangala, some 170 KMs from Bangalore. Nagamangala means auspicious to snakes or auspiciousness from snakes or established by Swami Ramanuja, incarnation of the great serpent Adisesha. This place is on the way from Melkote to Mangalore. The Lord here is Sri Kesava.

Guru: means great [person]. Swami Parasara Bhatta attributes this and following some Divine names to Sri Matsya avatara. Gu = darkness and ru = eliminates. Our ignorance darkness is being eliminated by teachers. The Lord is the First Acharya and He is the Acharya of all Acharyas. Vedas are the basis for all knowledge and Vedas were first brought out by the Lord. The Lord here was worshiped by Swami Ramanuja.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

SVS 226 [Surariha - 210 continued] (22.11)

Jwala ahobila malola kroda karancha bhargava |
Yogananda chatravata pavana nava moorthaya ||
We have spent almost one month visiting all sannidhis in Ahobilam, including Sri Raghava Simham at lower Ahobilam. With this we conclude our visit to Ahobilam. Six Hundred years back, Srimad Adi Van Satakopa Yatindra Maha Desika [ஸ்ரீமத் ஆதி வண் சடகோப யதீந்த்ர மஹா தேசிகன்], the First jeer got his sanyasam from the Lord Sri Narasimha, Himself.
Adimarai uruvana adipull verpadanil sodhiyana ulagellam sugam perave vandutitha adiguru narasingan arulale yogiyana adivan seer satakopan adi ani en mudi aniye.
[ஆதி மறை உருவான ஆதிப் புள் வெற்பு அதனில்
சோதி என உலகெல்லாம் சுகம் பெறவே வந்துதித்த
ஆதி குரு நரசிங்கன் அருளாலே யோகியான
ஆதி வண் சீர் சடகோபன் அடி இணை என் முடி அணியே ]
This is a Tamil pasuram on Sri Adivan Satakopa, founder of Sri Ahobila Mutt. It says that in Garudadri [Ahobilam], the Lord, being the First Acharya, blessed Sri Adivan Satakopa, the light of wisdom, to be an ascetic [sanyasi], whose divine feet decorate my head!
We now take leave of this place and start our tour of Karnataka, to visit temples there.
We will worship the Swami Adivan Satakopam standing and with Sri Malola Narasimha in his hands.

Friday, January 2, 2009

SVS 225 [Surariha - 210 continued] (22.11)


We have visited all the Nine sannidhis of Lord Sri Narasimha. We also visited Ugra sthambam, Prahalada padi and the cave in which Sri Chenchu Lakshmi Thayar meditated to get married to Sri Ahobilesa. We can now take rest at Sri Ahobila mutt at lower Ahobilam. We can chant Sri Rama Panchamruta stotram. We will now proceed to Sri Narasimha temple at lower Ahobilam. It is strange to expect such a well sculpted, beautiful and large temple in the mountain forests of the region. Many Kings and Acharyas have toiled to bring up this temple. Here Moolavar is Sri Lakshmi Narasimha, while Utsavar is Sri Prahalada Varada [ஸ்ரீ பிரகலாத வரதன்]. He is not having Lion face. He is gracing with discus, conch and mace in Three hands and the Fourth arm is showing abhaya.

One can see all the various forms of Sri Narasimha at upper Ahobilam, sculpted in the temple. Sri Narasimha is referred to as Periya Periya Perumal [பெரிய பெரிய பெருமாள்] , while Sri Ranganatha is called Periya Perumal. It is because, while Sri Rama has worshiped both Sri Ranganatha and Sri Narasimha, additionally Sri Srinivasa also has worshiped Sri Narasimha. During Sri Srinivasa's marriage with Sri Padmavati Thayar, all food preparations were offered to Sri Narasimha here. This is explained in Sri Venkatachala Mahatmyam [श्री वेंकटाचल माहात्म्यम]. This incident is sculpted here. We should therefore, remember that our personal God has to be offered food before we take, even in important occasions like marriages.