pachai maamalai pol mene

Thursday, October 18, 2018



(This is the famous Garbarakshinistotram.. 
It is believed that chanting of this would provide protection to a pregnant woman and the child growing inside her
I found that this stotram is chanted by many ladies across TamilNadu and Andhra.. and other places too.
But the stotram seems to have been taught orally or from veracular texts from generation to generation
So the Devanagari transcription wherever available was rather defective.. in spelling, grammar, and ideas too
I spent some time in studying the texts available with me and tried to correlate the ideas with many Vedic texts, and what I could find as the most reliable version.. is reproduced below.. 
Of course, the stotram has been tampered by use of other scripts and by handling by devotees who knew the spirit but did not know the meaning.. and even after my corrections there could be many parts that would require greater fine tuning.. But what I give is the most presentable according to me
I recommend this stotram for chanting by all expectant mothers. 
The stotram is a wide spectrum prayer to almost all deities..)

एह्येहि भगवन् ब्रह्मन् प्रजाकर्ता प्रजापते।
प्रगृह्णीष्व बलिं चैमां सापत्यम् रक्ष गर्भिणीम्। १
अश्विनौ देवदेवेशौ प्रगृह्णीतां बलिं त्विमाम्।
सापत्यं गर्भिणीं चैमां रक्षतां पूजयानया।२
रुद्राश्च एकादशाः प्रोक्ताः प्रगृह्णीध्वं बलिं त्विमाम्।
युष्माकं प्रीतये वृत्तां नित्यं रक्षन्तु गर्भिणीम्। ३
आदित्याः द्वादशाः प्रोक्ताः प्रगृह्णीध्वं बलिं त्विमां।
युष्माकं तेजसां वृद्ध्या नित्यं रक्षन्तु गर्भिणीम्॥४
विनायक गणाध्यक्ष शिवपुत्र महाबल।
प्रगृह्णीष्व बलिं चैमां सापत्यं रक्ष गर्भिणीम्॥५
स्कन्द षण्मुख देवेश पुत्रप्रीतिविवर्धन ।
प्रगृह्णीष्व बलिं चैमाम् सापत्यम् रक्ष गर्भिणिम्।६
प्रभासः प्रभवस्सोमः प्रत्यूषो मारुतोऽनलः॥
ध्रुवोधुर दिवश्चैव वसवोष्टौ प्रकीर्तिताः
परिगृह्य बलिं चैमाम् नित्यं रक्षस्व गर्भिणीम्॥७
पितृदेवि पितृश्रेष्ठे बहुपुत्रि महाबले।
बुध श्रेष्ठे निशावासे निवृते शौनकप्रिये।
प्रगृह्णीध्वं बलिम् चैमां सापत्यं रक्ष गर्भिणीम्॥८

रक्ष रक्ष महादेव भक्तानुग्रहकारक।
पक्षिवाहन गोविन्द सापत्यं रक्ष गर्भिणीम्॥९

ehyehi bhagavan brahman prajākartā prajāpate|
pragṛhṇīṣva baliṁ caimāṁ sāpatyam rakṣa garbhiṇīm| 1
aśvinau devadeveśau pragṛhṇītāṁ baliṁ tvimām|
sāpatyaṁ garbhiṇīṁ caimāṁ rakṣatāṁ pūjayānayā|2
rudrāśca ekādaśāḥ proktāḥ pragṛhṇīdhvaṁ baliṁ tvimām|
yuṣmākaṁ prītaye vṛttāṁ nityaṁ rakṣantu garbhiṇīm| 3
ādityāḥ dvādaśāḥ proktāḥ pragṛhṇīdhvaṁ baliṁ tvimāṁ|
yuṣmākaṁ tejasāṁ vṛddhyā nityaṁ rakṣantu garbhiṇīm||4
vināyaka gaṇādhyakṣa śivaputra mahābala|
pragṛhṇīṣva baliṁ caimāṁ sāpatyaṁ rakṣa garbhiṇīm||5
skanda ṣaṇmukha deveśa putraprītivivardhana|
pragṛhṇīṣva baliṁ caimām sāpatyam rakṣa garbhiṇim|6
prabhāsaḥ prabhavassomaḥ pratyūṣo māruto'nalaḥ||
dhruvodhura divaścaiva vasavoṣṭau prakīrtitāḥ|
parigṛhya baliṁ caimām nityaṁ rakṣasva garbhiṇīm||7
pitṛdevi pitṛśreṣṭhe bahuputri mahābale|
budha śreṣṭhe niśāvāse nivṛtee śaunakapriye|
pragṛhṇīdhvaṁ balim caimāṁ sāpatyaṁ rakṣa garbhiṇīm||8
rakṣa rakṣa mahādeva bhaktānugrahakāraka|
pakṣivāhana govinda sāpatyaṁ rakṣa garbhiṇīm||9
Meanings of each stanza..
एह्येहि भगवन् ब्रह्मन् प्रजाकर्ता प्रजापते।
प्रगृह्णीष्व बलिं चैमां सापत्यम् रक्ष गर्भिणीम्। १
प्रजाकर्ता प्रजापते भगवन् ब्रह्मन् एहि एहि बलिं प्रगृह्णीष्व इमां गर्भिणीं सापत्यं रक्ष च
Oh Lord Brahman endowed of all splendour, you are the creator of offspring and the protector of the offspring.. Please visit us here.. Please partake in the respectful offerings we present for you.. 
And may you be pleased to protect this pregnant woman with her child.
अश्विनौ देवदेवेशौ प्रगृह्णीतां बलिं त्विमाम्।
सापत्यं गर्भिणीं चैमां रक्षेतां पूजयानया।२
देवदेवेशौ अश्विनौ तु इमां बलिं प्रगृह्णीतां अनया पूजया (तृप्तौ ) तौ इमां गर्भिणीं सापत्यं रक्षेतां च

The twins Ashvins, the gods of Medicine and healing, who are the overlords of even Gods, may be pleased to accept this offering we make unto them with great devotion.. Being satisfied with such offerings, may the twins protect this pregnant woman with her child. 
रुद्राश्च एकादशाः प्रोक्ताः प्रगृह्णीध्वं बलिं त्विमाम्।
युष्माकं प्रीतये वृत्तां नित्यं रक्षन्तु गर्भिणीम्। ३
एकादशः प्रोक्ताः रुद्राः यूयं इमां बलिं तु प्रगृह्णीध्वं युष्माकं प्रीतये नित्यं वृत्तां इमां गर्भिणीं रक्षन्तु.
You Rudras, who are famed to manifest in elevan forms may you be pleased to accept the offerings we make before you in great devotion
And may you be pleased to protect this pregnant woman who is undergoing vratas in your honour on a day to day basi..
आदित्याः द्वादशाः प्रोक्ताः प्रगृह्णीध्वं बलिं त्विमां।
युष्माकं तेजसां वृद्ध्या नित्यं रक्षन्तु गर्भिणीम्॥४
द्वादशा प्रोक्ताः आदित्याः यूयं इमाम् बलिं तु प्रगृह्णीध्वं
अपि च युष्माकं तेजसाम् वृद्ध्या इमां गर्भिणीं नित्यं रक्षन्तु 
You the Adityas who are famed to be twelve in number and together constitute the Suryamandalam, may you be pleased to accept the offering we make before you with great devotion.
And further may you be pleased to protect this pregnant woman every day with your increasing splendour and ever potent powers. 
विनायक गणाध्यक्ष शिवपुत्र महाबल।
प्रगृह्णीष्व बलिं चैमां सापत्यं रक्ष गर्भिणीम्॥५
गणाध्यक्ष महाबल शिवपुत्र भगवन् विनायक बलिं प्रगृह्णीष्व इमां गर्भिणीं सापत्यं रक्ष च
You Lord Ganesha the Vinayaka, you are the leader of the retinue of gods and demigods in heaven, you are of immense power, you are the beloved son of Lord shiva, may you be pleased to receive the offerings made before you with great devotion and to protect the pregnant woman along with the child.
स्कन्द षण्मुख देवेश पुत्रप्रीतिविवर्धन ।
प्रगृह्णीष्व बलिं चैमाम् सापत्यम् रक्ष गर्भिणिम्।६
देवेश षण्मुख पुत्रप्रीतिविवर्धन स्कन्द बलिं प्रगृह्णीष्व इमां गर्भिणीं सापत्यं रक्ष चा 
Lord Skanda, the one with six faces, the one who is the lord of all gods, who is the bestower of the pleasure and good demeanour of sons towards their parents, may you be pleased to receive the offerings made befor you with great devotion and to protect the pregnant womam along with the child.
प्रभासः प्रभवस्सोमः प्रत्यूषो मारुतोऽनलः॥
ध्रुवोधुर दिवश्चैव वसवोष्टौ प्रकीर्तिताः
परिगृह्य बलिं चैमाम् नित्यं रक्षस्व गर्भिणीम्॥७
प्रभासः प्रभवः सोमः प्रत्यूषः मारुतः अनलः ध्रुवः धुरः दिवः च एव अष्टौ वसवः प्रकीर्तिताः. यूयं इमां बलिं परिगृह्य (रमस्व) इमां गर्भिणीं रक्षस्व च
The eight vasus are famous by their names Prabhaasa, Prabhava, Soma, Pratyoosha, Maaruta, Analy, Dhruva, Dhura and Diva.
May you ( the eight vasus) be pleased to accept the offerings made before you with great respect and to protect this pregnat woman every day... 
पितृदेवि पितृश्रेष्ठे बहुपुत्रि महाबले।
बुध श्रेष्ठे निशावासे निवृते शौनकप्रिये।
प्रगृह्णीध्वं बलिम् चैमां सापत्यं रक्ष गर्भिणीम्॥८

पितृश्रेष्ठे बहुपुत्रि महाबले बुध श्रेष्ठे निशावासे निवृते शौनकप्रिये पितृदेवि
त्वं बलिं प्रगृह्णीध्वं इमां गर्भिणीं सापत्यं रक्ष च 
The goddess of Pitrus ( Swadhaa..) you are the best and foremost of all pitrus.. You are having many daughters ( meaning that all the females in the world are her daughters) You are very powerful.. You are the best among the wise. You are the one who resides (awake ) in nights to protect all, You are the blemishless one,, You have been praised with affection by the great sage and teacher Saunaka..
May you be pleased to accept the offerings made before you with great devotion and to protect this pregnant woman with her child..
रक्ष रक्ष महादेव भक्तानुग्रहकारक।
पक्षिवाहन गोविन्द सापत्यं रक्ष गर्भिणीम्॥९
भक्तानुग्रहकारक महादेव त्वं इमां गर्भिणीं सापत्यं रक्ष रक्ष 
पक्षिवाहन गोविन्द त्वं इमां गर्भिणीं सापत्यं रक्ष
Oh Lord mahadeva Shankara, you are the one who is capable of giving all blessings to your devotees.. Please protect, protect again, this pregnant lady along with the child.
Oh Lord Govinda, Narayana, the one who is having the bird Garuda as your mount, please protect this pregnant lady along with the child.

The authorship of this is attributed to Shaunaka..

Wednesday, October 17, 2018


ध्यायेन्नित्यं महेशं रजतगिरिनिभं चारुचन्द्रावतंसं
रत्नाकल्पोज्ज्वलाङ्गं परशुमृगवराभितिहस्तं प्रसन्नम्।
पद्मासीनं समन्तात्स्तुतममरगणैर्व्याघ्रकृत्तिं वसानं
विश्वाद्यं विश्वबीजं निखिलभयहरं पञ्चवक्त्रं त्रिनेत्रम्॥
पशुपतीन्दुपतिं धरणिपतिं भुजगलोकपतिं च सतीपतिम्।
गणत भक्तजनार्तिहरं परं भजत रे मनुज गिरिजापतिम्॥१
न जनको जननी न च सोदरो न तनयो न च भूरिबलं कुलम्।
अवति कोऽपि न कालवशं गतं भजत रे मनुज गिरिजापतिम्॥२
मुरजडिण्डिवाद्यविलक्षणं मधुरपञ्चमनादविशारदम्।
प्रथमभूतगणैरपि सेवितं भजत रे मनुज गिरिजापतिम्॥३
शरणदं सुखदं शरणान्वितं शिव शिवेति शिवेति नत नृणाम्।
अभयदं करुणावरुणालयं भजत रे मनुज गिरिजापतिम्॥४
नरशिरोरचितं मणिकुण्डलं भुजगहारमुदं वृषभध्वजम्।
चिति रजोधवलीकृत विग्रहं भजत रे मनुज गिरिजापतिम्॥ ५
मखविनाशकरं शशिशेखरं सततमध्वरभाजिफलप्रदम्।
प्रलयदग्धसुरासुरमानवं भजत रे मनुज गिरिजापतिम्॥६
मदमपास्य चिरं हृदि संस्थितं मरण जन्म जरा भय पीडितम्।
जगदुदीक्ष्य समीपभयाकुलं भजत रे मनुज गिरिजापतिम्॥७
हरिविरिञ्चसुराधिप पूजितं यमजनेशधनेशनमस्कृतम्।
त्रिनयनं भुवनत्रितयाधिपं भजत रे मनुज गिरिजापतिम्॥८
पशुपतेरिदमष्टकमद्भुतं विरचितं पृथिवीपति सूरिणा।
पठति संशृणुते मनुजः सदा शिवपुरिं वसते लभते मुदम्॥ ९

dhyāyennityaṁ maheśaṁ rajatagirinibhaṁ cārucandrāvataṁsaṁ
ratnākalpojjvalāṅgaṁ paraśumṛgavarābhitihastaṁ prasannam|
padmāsīnaṁ samantātstutamamaragaṇairvyāghrakṛttiṁ vasānaṁ
viśvādyaṁ viśvabījaṁ nikhilabhayaharaṁ pañcavaktraṁ trinetram||
paśupatīndupatiṁ dharaṇipatiṁ bhujagalokapatiṁ ca satīpatim|
gaṇata bhaktajanārtiharaṁ paraṁ bhajata re manuja girijāpatim||1
na janako jananī na ca sodaro na tanayo na ca bhūribalaṁ kulam|
avati ko'pi na kālavaśaṁ gataṁ bhajata re manuja girijāpatim||2
murajaḍiṇḍivādyavilakṣaṇaṁ madhurapañcamanādaviśāradam|
prathamabhūtagaṇairapi sevitaṁ bhajata re manuja girijāpatim||3
śaraṇadaṁ sukhadaṁ śaraṇānvitaṁ śiva śiveti śiveti nata nṛṇām|
abhayadaṁ karuṇāvaruṇālayaṁ bhajata re manuja girijāpatim||4
naraśiroracitaṁ maṇikuṇḍalaṁ bhujagahāramudaṁ vṛṣabhadhvajam|
citi rajodhavalīkṛta vigrahaṁ bhajata re manuja girijāpatim|| 5
makhavināśakaraṁ śaśiśekharaṁ satatamadhvarabhājiphalapradam|
pralayadagdhasurāsuramānavaṁ bhajata re manuja girijāpatim||6
madamapāsya ciraṁ hṛdi saṁsthitaṁ maraṇa janma jarā bhaya pīḍitam|
jagadudīkṣya samīpabhayākulaṁ bhajata re manuja girijāpatim||7
hariviriñcasurādhipa pūjitaṁ yamajaneśadhaneśanamaskṛtam|
trinayanaṁ bhuvanatritayādhipaṁ bhajata re manuja girijāpatim||8
paśupateridamaṣṭakamadbhutaṁ viracitaṁ pṛthivīpati sūriṇā|
paṭhati saṁśṛṇute manujaḥ sadā śivapuriṁ vasate labhate mudam|| 9


The celebrated pashupatyashtam.. with Devanagari Text and Transliteration is given above.. 
I am making an attmept at translation.
Lord Shiva is called Pashupati.. because he is the master and supreme contoller of all living beings.. the Pashus.. (though Pashu generally would mean animals without sixth sense)


That Lord of Lords, Mahesha sould be meditated upon every day
He is having the form resembling a dazzling silver mountain
He is wearing the beautiful crescent moon as an ornament
He is adorned with various decorations of gems all over his body
He is having an axe, a deer in his hands and he shows the varada mudra, and abaya mudra with another pair of hands
He is very calm and pleased
He is seated on a lotus ( or in padmasana)
The groups of gods present around him in all directions are singing His praise
He is wearing the raw skin of a tiger
He is the foremost among all in the Universe
He provides the seed for the creation of the universe 
He is the remover of all fears
He is having five faces ( Aghoram, Sadyojatham, Easanam, Tatpurusham Vamadevam)
He is having three eyes.. The Sun and Moon for the two natural eyes and the fire or agni as his third eye.

The prayer

1 Oh man, do worship the Master of the Daughter of Mountain, the Lord of all living creatures, the lord of the moon, the lord of the earth, the master of the world of Serpant, and the Consort of Devi Sati.. Know that He is the remover of all sorrows of His devotees.

2 Oh man, do worship the master of the Daughter of Mountains.. for when you are thrown hither and thither and tormented by the vagaries of time and fate, your father, your mother, your sister, your son or even your clan with a lot of power and population, can really support you.. Only the Lord is there to offer help at that time.
3. Oh man, do worship the Master of the Daughter of Mountain, the Lord who is accomplised in playing pecussion instruments like Mridanga and Damaru, the Lord who is a connoissuer who sings with the Panchama note in prominence (the musical note Pa.. the fifth of the seven.. Shaja, Rishabha, Gandhara, Madhyama, Panchama, Daivata, and Nishada.. Sa,Ri Ga Ma Pa Da ni..), the Lord who is ever served by the most prominent BhootaGanas (clans of demigods)
4. Oh man, do worship the Master of the Daughter of Mountain, the Lord who can give us protection, the Lord who can bless us with comfort and peace, the Lord who always ensures protection to the devotees who worship him chanting Shiva, Shiva,Shiva, the Lord who is the ocean or reservoir of mercy..

5. Oh man, do worship the Master of the Daughter of Mountain, the lord who wears an ear ornament shaped from the skull of a man, the lord who decorates himself happily with garlands of snakes, the Lord who is having Vrishaba,, the bull as the insignia in his flagstaff, the Lord who has smeared himself white with the ashes from the funeral pyre..

6. Oh man, do worship the Master of the Daughter of Mountain, the Lord who interrupted and stopped the Yajna conducted by Daksha, 
The Lord who has kept the fresh lunar crescent on his matted locks,
the Lord who provides all benefits to people who are engaged in performing fire rites and yagas, the Lord who burns in his capacity as Kaalaagni rudra, all gods, asuras, men and other things when the deluge arrives portending the end of a particular eon arrives. 
7 Oh man, do worship the Master of the Daughter of Mountain, after abandoning the arrogance that has been accumulating in your mind and heart for a very long time and also coming to terms with the fact that the life we face is full of problems like death, pangs of birth, and old age and that the world has only threats and difficulties in store for us, and only the Lords mercy can just carry you through.

8. Oh man, do worship the Master of the Daughter of Mountain, the Lord who is waited upon by Hari the Vishnu, Virincha the Brahmadeva, the king of Gods Indra, the god of death Yama, the god of affluence Kuera and all the leaders and kings of men, the Lord who has three eyes, the Lord who is the overlord of all the three worlds..

9.Whoever recites or listens with devotion this wonderful prayer of eight stanzas addressed to Lord Pashupathi.. the Shiva and written by the poet Prithiveepathi, would attain peace and happiness and would attain the world of Shiva, when his worldly life is over..

Monday, October 01, 2018

meet and depart....

meet  and depart....
एकवृक्षसमारूढा नाना वर्णा विहङ्गमाः।
प्रभाते दशसु दिक्षु तत्र का परिवेदना॥
चाणक्य नीति
ekavṛkṣasamārūḍhā nānā varṇā vihaṅgamāḥ|
prabhāte daśasu dikṣu tatra kā parivedanā||
cāṇakya ṇiti

Another poignant reminder from Chanakya
Birds of feathers with different colours and of myriad species all flock togher in the branches of the same tree duing night..
But come the morning, they would fly away in differenct directios, to come back again or not..
What is there to regret about it.. ?

The couplet portryas a very deep truth of life with a very simple example..
When we are all enjoying and sharing the company of one another, we somehow presusme that such togetherness is for ever.. And often when some of the company depart, we feel the void too.. 
It is not we can help feeling sad about it.. 
But if we realize that no status in life, no situation in life is permanent, and that change is the only truth of life, our deep sorrow and disappoint can be assuaged very much

Another message the idea can coney is that we should celebrate and be happy in the company of our near and dear, and make use of such togethersness in the best way, because, after a period, there would be separation, perhaps for ever, and it is not of any use to regret then of what has alreday been lost.

Monday, September 10, 2018

The shatterer of Vighnas.. or impeditments..

The shatterer of Vighnas.. or impeditments..
The great hymn on Lord Subramania of Tiruchendur, penned by Shankarabagavatpada himself is among the holiest of prayers in the annals of Hindu spirituality..

The hymn is rich in imagery and literary techniques, 
and at the same time soaked in deep devotion for Skanda..

It is believed that Shankaracharya was afflicted by a problem in the stomach, and this hymn was composed by Him in praise of Skanda .. to get relief from that malady..
It is believed that Shankara camped at Jayantipuram or Tiruchendur composes the hymn and partook in the holy ashes prasadams distributed in leaves received from the temple and got cured ..
Till date the prasadams and the hymn Subramania Bhujangam are both considered as sacred among the most sacred..

The first sloka in the Bhujangam is a prayer of Lord Ganesha.

सदा बालरूपापि विघ्नाद्रिहन्त्री महादन्तिवक्त्रापि पङ्चास्यमान्या।
विधीन्द्रादिमृग्या गणेशाभिधा मे विधत्तां श्रियं कापि कल्याणमूर्तिः॥
आचार्यैः शङ्करभगवत्पादैः प्रणीते सुब्रह्मण्यभुजङ्गे॥
sadā bālarūpāpi vighnādrihantrī mahādantivaktrāpi paṅcāsyamānyā|
vidhīndrādimṛgyā gaṇeśābhidhā me vidhattāṁ śriyaṁ kāpi kalyāṇamūrtiḥ||
ācāryaiḥ śaṅkarabhagavatpādaiḥ praṇīte subrahmaṇyabhujaṅge||


May that Glorious Divinity which has the name Ganesha bestow on us all wealth and welfare..
That Divine form.. though looking like just a child is capable of shattering huge mountains of difficulties for the devotees.
That Divine form though having the face of a huge elephant is viewed with awe and respect by the natural enemy and adversary, the lion
That Divine form which is sought after with great respect by Lords Brahma and Indra and other deities and gods too.
( Panchasya.. means Shiva.. Himself with the five Heads. Sadyojatham, Vamadevam, Eashaanam, Tatpurusham and Aghoram.. So panchasyamaanya.. could mean the divine form which is given great affection by Lord Shiva Himself.. Ganehse is also the ultimate in Knowledge.. Panchasya is also an epithet for scholars.. so it could mean that Ganesha is respected by all the learned people too..)

the contrast is more important..
He is just a boy, but he will shatter a mountain.. 
Baala indicates infant.. not grown and stron.. but the mountain is old and sturdy.. and the lord in infant form can shatter the tough mountain
Mahaadanti vaktra means having the face or a big elephant.. And elephant is always an enemy of a lion..
Her panchaasya means a lion.. Even though He is elephant faced, he is respected by a lion.. Panchaasya has the meaning of Shiva also.. so it implies the affection of lord Shiva too .. but that is secondary..
vidhi.. brahmadeva.
Indra lord Indra the king of the gods..
Vidheendraadhimrigyaa.. vidhi indra aadhibhiH mrigyaa.. sought after by the greats like Brahma and Indra..

Ganesha abhidhaa.. having the name of ganesha..
I had already posted on the greatness of the ashes distributed in Tiruchendur.. in panneer leaves..

I am repeating the same.
Skanda Shasti 
a very auspicious day for that beautiful and powerful God Subramania or Murugan.. is just two days away
I would love to share a few words on the glory of the Holy ashes adorning that cute warrior..
the words which are endorse by Shankaraacharya Himself
Lord Subramania was born to fight the Cruel Demons Like Soora, Simhavaktra and Thaaraka..
The Lord vanquished Soorapadma on the Skanda Shasti day, and gave Moskhsam to the demon by permitting him to be his mount the peacock and also the insignia in His flagstaff the rooster..
This happened in Lanka and the Lord Murugan (Skanda) stood on the shore of the Bay of Bengal, at Jayanti puram of Tiruchendur.. with his spear of Shakti pressed on the ground and held in one hand and casting a challenging glance westwards to see if anyone was left behind to challenge him in a battle..
With another hand he offered Bilva leaves to his Father, the Supreme Lord Shankara..
The lord Stands there in His most ferocious form -- the Supreme Commander of the Army of Gods just after concluding a victorious campaign .. 
No force could dare to stand facing him..
He is also manifest in his six-faced form in Tiruchendur
After the glorious victory he is manifesting himself in all Royal glory..
The Vedas themselves wanted to praise Him and took the shape of a tree with lots of branches full of leaves.. and flowers ( The tree according to the local lore is called Panneer tree) and the Lord is worshiped with these flowers and each leaf represents a great mantra of the Veda, it is believed..
Adi Shankara, was once afflicted by an incurable abdominal ailment.. and all medicines and yogic powers could not give any relief.. 
So the Saint Visited the Shrine of Skanda at tiruchendur and praised the Lord with a hymn. Subramania Bhujangam.. a beautiful piece of literature in elegant Sanskrit, composed in Bhujanga Metre..
It is believed that Shankara got cured of all His ailments by the mercy of Subrahmnya of Tiruchendur..
The main prasadam at the temple is the holy ashes which bathe the idol of the lord and is distributed in the leaves of the Panneer tree..
The greatness of this ash on the leaf.. "patrabhooti " is underlined at stanza 25 of Subramanian Bhujangam
अपस्मारकुष्ठक्षयार्शःप्रमेह ज्वरोन्मादिगुल्मादिरोगाः महान्तः।
पिशाचाश्च सर्वे भवत्पत्रभूतिम् विलोक्य क्षणात् तारकारे द्रवन्ते॥२५॥
॥श्रीमद् शङ्कराचार्य विरचिताद् सुब्रह्मण्यभुजङ्गात्॥
apasmārakuṣṭhakṣayārśaḥprameha jvaronmādigulmādirogāḥ mahāntaḥ |
piśācāśca sarve bhavatpatrabhūtim vilokya kṣaṇāt tārakāre dravante ||25||
||śrīmad śaṅkarācārya viracitād subrahmaṇyabhujaṅgāt||
Shankara Says, 
Oh Slayer of the demon Tharaka, ( Muruga) 
on just seeing the holy ashes placed on leaves in your presence, powerful and incurable diseases like epilepsy, leprosy, tuberculosis, piles, diabetes, fever, mental disorders, delusions, and enlargement of spleen just vanish within split seconds, and the demons afflicting people flee for their life..
The diseases which are cured by the Lords Holy ashes in the leaf given at Tiruchendur temple
Apasmaara.. epilepsy.. 
Kushta leprosy 
Kshaya Tubeculosis 
ArshaH piles 
Prameha Diabetes 
Jvara..fever unmaadi.. mental disorder, delusion 
gulma.. the abdominal disorder.. enlargement of spleen
and if any evil demi gods or demons have afflicted the body of the visitor to the temple, those depart and bolt away on the sight of the holy ashes..


ശക്തി കുറഞ്ഞ ഒരു ബാലന്റെ രൂപമാണെങ്കിലും വിഘ്നങ്ങളുടെ വലിയ പര്‍വതങ്ങളെപ്പോലും തകര്‍ക്കാന്‍ കഴിയുന്ന 
ആനയുടെ മുഖമാണ് എങ്കിലും സ്ഥിരം ശത്രുവായ സിംഹത്താല്‍ പോലും ബഹുമാനിക്കപ്പെടുന്നയാള്‍
ബ്രഹ്മാവ്‌ ഇന്ദ്രന്‍ എന്നിവരാല്‍ ഇപ്പോഴും തേടപ്പെടുന്ന 
ഗണേശന്‍ എന്നാ പേരുള്ള ഒരു മംഗള രൂപമുള്ള വസ്തു നമുക്ക് സമ്പത്തുകള്‍ നല്‍കട്ടെ..

പഞ്ചാസ്യന്‍ എന്ന വാക്കിന്നു ശിവന്‍ എന്നും അര്‍ത്ഥമുണ്ട്.. സദ്യോജാതം, വാമദേവം ഈശാനം തത്പുരുഷം, അഘോരം എന്നീ അഞ്ചു മുഖങ്ങള്‍.. 
പണ്ഡിതന്‍ എന്ന അര്‍ത്ഥത്തിലും പഞ്ചാനനന്‍ പഞ്ചാസ്യന്‍ എന്നൊക്കെ ഉപയോഗിച്ച് കണ്ടിട്ടുണ്ടു

ഈ പ്രാര്‍ഥനയില്‍ ആചാര്യസ്വാമികള്‍ ഗണേശന്റെ നിഷ്കളങ്കവും എളിയതും ആയ രൂപവും അതേ സമയം അളവില്ലാത്ത ശക്തിയും തമ്മില്‍ താരതമ്യം ചെയ്യുകയാണ്.

Sunday, September 09, 2018

ante naryanana smritiH..

ante naryanana smritiH..

अन्ते नारायणस्मृति:

Was just reading a book on mantrams.. or holy chants.

Yes, mantrams do work.. mantrams are potent..
whenther I belive in them or not they ar not abracadabra..

And the minimum guarantee is that a mantram can never harm me..

As a fairly devout brahmin, I was initated into the great mantram of Gayathri.. more than half a century ago..
and it was an unavoidable duty nd ritual to chant that mantram, whether I like it or not,
at least a few times a day

during the worship of Sandhya,

and during pooja

and during preparation for taking food etc..

So whether with faith or just as a mechanical affair
Gayatri.. mother Gayatri a part of my life..
as good as my own mother..

Of course, this is the case with every brahmin.. I am sure about that at least till the last generation.

But Gayatri can be chanted only under prescribed conditions.. not any time and anywhere.. at least that is the prescription and promise handed out when we are initiated into that mahamantram by our elders.. and I had made this promise to my father more than half a century ago, although he is not there to remind me of that promise any more.. A promise is a promise..

But my father, a devout but a naive and rather ignorant person with no initiation into Sanskrit or Vedas,
but extremely rich just is his faith,
had got the mantram of Rama from a guru
and he instructed me too to repeat that..
but again for a limited number of times in the morning and evenings..

But he used to ask me and my siblings to sit together at least for five minutes in the evening every day and chant "Naraynana"

Of course, no rules are prescribed..
The time and number given by him are just the minimum..
Yes, Narayana namam can be chanted anywhere, any way, any number of times..

So simple, so profound.. I have not leaned any greater lesson in faith, in spirituality..

Narayana, the owner of the name..
He is presumed to the the Supreme one..
But His name is powerful.. maybe more powerful that Him, I trust..

Of course I have seen Srivaishnavas acquire the holy name in a more formal fashion with more words and beejams attached to it..

Even the mere name is formallly prescribed with dhyanam, rishi chandas etc.. and is chanted at prescribed times and on prescribed occasions..

But we can call out Narayana at any time..
Ajamila is the witness..

The great saints, who have relinquished all worldly possessions,
if they are called upon to affix their signature,
usually invoke
Narayana Smriti..
remembering the name of Narayana

The word seems to cost nothing, but it is of immense value..

Chant Narayana all the time..
Every moment in life can be the last moment..
And the last moment can be blessed only
if we breathe our last
with Narayana in our lips, memory and hearts..

Ante Narayanasmriti..

Friday, August 24, 2018

retrospect on Onam and maveli..

Let us see how we can relate the Legend of Mahabali being vanquished and sent to nether worlds by Vamana and the story of the just and happy rule of Mahabali in Kerala..
especially since Kerala is supposed to have been created by Parasurama much after the Vamana incarnation..

Our Puranas and Itihasas are huge bundles of facts, fictions, myths and legends..
But there is an inbuilt message that the good prevails over the evil ultimately..
We have to love our legends more for that message and not for the fluff..

There is an apoarent chronological inconsistency..

But this is not the only one such situation in our legends..

There are too many

Some people just feel explanation of such events and narrations by some sort of convoluted logic is the be all and end all of Hinduism..
It is not so..

Some apologists would say the Avatars replicate again and again in each succeeding chathuryuga or a string of four yugas and so the Vamana incident of a later cycle could have occurred after the Parasurama episode in Kerala..

But such arguments are facetious..

of course, a distant possibility.. people who settled in Kerala after Parasurama created that land by throw of an axe from Gokarna to Kanyakumari or vice versa also brought the legend of Mahabali with them..
That again is just a guess..

It seems the Maaveli legend of Kerala is a local myth confined to Kerala alone ..

But that myth is an emotion, a dream, a hope for every Keralite..
The man of Kerala builds up and lives on Nostalgia on such a benevolent rule of prosperity and fair-play.. by Maveli of yonder years..
Perhaps there was a ruler in Kerala living up to that standards sometime in the history..
And as is usual with all dynasties or systems of administrations, the citadel of such welfare state was once shattered by some strife and Maveli just had to abdicate and flee..

The imaginative minds of the populace connected this story with the Puranic episode of Mahabali being vanquished by Vishnu as Vamana..

The two myths just gelled together..

No Puranam worth its name says that the Yajna conducted by Mahabali happened in Kerala..

And the legend of Onam in Kerala is a local legend which is not found in any Puranam or Itihasam..

So we need not try to put test in the light of puranams the facts and chronology of these two incidents which got superimposed..

Onam is our dream.. for us Keralites, Maaveli or Mahabali is that just and fair ruler of men whom we wanted to have all the time.. irrespective of systems, isms and ideologies..

Permit us to live our fond dreams,, at least for ten days..

No questions asked..

I just attempted to trace the historical possibilities..
I have not tried to give nor support any theories..
There is a local legend about a great ruler of Kerala..

The ballad sung by all from Layman to the learned..
for millenniums ago till this onam..
and the same refrains might reverberate our cultural horizons for even centuries to come..

മാവേലി നാടു വാണീടുംകാലം മാനുഷരെല്ലാരും ഒന്നുപോലെ ( when Maveli ruled this land, all human beings were equal)
Sometimes, just to forget everything mundane and often distressing, we have to live in some utopia.. some imaginary ideal environs at least for a very small slice of time..
The festivals and festivities have taken shape from this acute awareness..
Any festival among any set of people however varied they are in their living conditions, is celebrated just to throw to winds all tension and enjoy life..
The frills and theories all follow.. just as appendages...

May this Onam bring us all happiness.. and hope.. and renewed determination to raise from setbacks to Greatness once again..
असतो मा सद्गमय
तमसो मा ज्योतिर्गमय
मृत्योर्मा अमृतं गमय

Saturday, July 14, 2018

time to bury the hatchet...

परैः परिभवं प्राप्ते वयं पञ्चोत्तरं शतम्।
परस्परविरोधे तु वयं पञ्च शतं तु ते॥
महाभारते वनपर्वणि २४३-३
paraiḥ paribhavaṁ prāpte vayaṁ pañcottaraṁ śatam|
parasparavirodhe tu vayaṁ pañca śataṁ tu te||
mahābhārate vanaparvaṇi 243-3

A very interesting situation in the epic Mahabharatham, Vanaparvama.. Ghoshayatra Parvam

After being defeated in a game of Dice 
The Pandavas along with Draupadi are having their sojourn in the forest called Dvaita Vana.. 
Even there, by virute the power of their own great qualities and by the Grace of Krishna they are leading a frugal but very nice life, and people from all walks of life and sages visited them and they received the hospitality of the Pandavas in a befitting manner.

Meanwhile, Duryodhana, who had usurped the kingdom, is still not very confident about retaining the standards set by Yudhistira. 
Once a brahmin, who had visited Yudhistira in Dvaita forest and has been his guest, paid a visit to Hastinapura and during his talks with Duryodhana, 
He described the grand style of living of the Pandavas and the hospitality of Dharmaputra, even while the brothers were in exile.. 
This kindled the jealousy of Duryodhana, and prodded by Shakuni and Karna he set out on a forest expedition, ostensibly with a view to visit his own forest areas and tame the wild animals by hunting, but with the intention of causing as much damage to Pandavas as possible.

A big retinue of vassals, friends, ministers, armed soidiers, tradesmen and even some ladies accompanied the king in this expedition which was named Ghoshayatra..

While entering the forest, very near the camp of Yudhistira and his brothers, Duryodhana and his men were accosted by a celestial group of Gandharvas, who challenged them for fight..

First Karna fought them and was defeated and held in captivity by them..
Subequently Duryodhana himself with all his men, women and belongings was captured and kept under arrest..

Some soldiers who had sneaked away from Duryodhana's camp fled to where Yudhistira was living, and informed Bhimasena of the pathetic plight of Duryodhana and company..
Bhimasena was rather pleased and stated that Duryodhana got only what he deserved.. 
But the King Yudhistira overheard the conversation and was very disturbed..
He was all the more worried that the ladies of the clan were also captured...

He felt that the honour of the Kuru Race to which the Pandavas too belonged was at stake and he told Bhima that He, Arjuna and the Twins Nakula and Sahadeva should immediately act and ensure the release of Duryodhana and his people..

The above sloka states exactly what Dharmaputra told his younger brother Bhima..
" When we are challenged and under attack by others, we are one hundred and five..( hundred kauravas and five pandavas together) ..
Maybe we are inmical to each other as a group of five against another group of one hundred.. as far as that family feud is concerned."

(this is the meaning of the slokam quoted at the top)

Of course, the Pandavas waged a fierce battle with the Gandharvas and secured the release of Duryodhana and his retinue..

But the Kaurava cousins and their henchmen , true to their character, were thankless..

Later on a fierce battle, Mahabharata war occured and the Kauravas were decimated and Pandavas were restored to power.. That is history.

But the lesson here is that in the matter of unequivocal allegience to one's own race and country all persons belonging to the race and all the subjects and citizens of the nation should rally together forgetting all the inernal squabbles and stand as one man against the disruptive forces and secure victory too...
"We may fight as five on one side and hundred on the other side,, but when outsiders attach, we are hundred and five.. "

This spirit projected by the epic Mahabharatham is worth emulation by any patriotic group..