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Sri Visnu Sahasranama
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About the Author

 

Shri T.N. Raghavendra was born in the year 1941 hailing from a hoary family in Karnataka of great lineage. A technocrat by education, training and wide experience, Shri Raghavendra is an expert on foundation engineering. Though deeply immersed in mundane affairs Shri Raghavendra has taken a quantum leap into the esoteric metaphysical field in recent years. He has authored some 14 books in a time span of less than a decade on Vedantic texts such as the Geetha, Upanishads, Smritis and the Rigveda. His work on the Rigveda in eleven volumes-a clear manifestation of the grace of his Guru (the presiding deity of Mantralaya-the qualified Brahman-the all-pervading Sri Hari Narayana) shines like the bright stars on a clear evening sky. Anyone, even an atheist coming into contact with him, personally or by perusal of his books will invariably develop a sense of deep devotion to the all-pervading Reality. His word can appropriately be christened Prasthana Dwaya.

 

Preface

 

Spiritual literature is like honey which we can take only a sip at a time. Knowledge is power and divine knowledge brings unflinching faith and devotion. The worldly person asks what is god and where is god as though it is an object to be possessed and controlled. The worldly mind obsessed with matter rebels at spiritual literature. The spiritual knowledge takes us beyond the vagaries of the world and the mind. Once we experience the peace and tranquillity that emanates from the spiritual knowledge, the mind overcomes its own resistance.

 

SrI Visnu Sahasranama is the spiritual literature par excellence. It is an ocean of divine knowledge depicting the power and glory of the Supreme Lord. For the seekers of truth and divine knowledge, it is the source of light. For devotees, it is the Supreme goal.

 

I have put in my small effort in explaining the meaning of every nama (name) depicting the power and glory of the Supreme Lord by bringing together the statements of Supreme truth as explained in the Vedas, Upanisads, Bhagavadgita and other holy scriptures. This divine knowledge declared in our holy scriptures is what makes our country great and enduring. This knowledge and devotion is what gives us strength in times of doubts and difficulties.

 

I have borrowed extensively the mantras and their meaning from various upanisadic texts. I am grateful to authors and publishers of various books specially to Sri Ramakrishna Math who are in the forefront for spreading our immortal scriptures.

 

I am thankful to the T.T. Devasthanams for the financial assistance.

 

I am also thankful to Sri Nithyananda Compugraphics for their painstaking efforts in bringing out this difficult work of Sanskrit mantras in English.

 

Many great scholars have appreciated and have given encouragement for this work. I am highly thankful to them.

This devotional work, I offer at the lotus feet of the Supreme Lord Venkataramana Swamy of the Seven Hills and pray that all readers of this book be blessed by the Supreme Lord.

 

Foreword

 

I am indeed happy to inscribe the foreword to Sri T.N. Raghavendra’s exposition of the glory and exalted spiritual merit of Sri Visnu Sahasranama. Sri Raghavendra is himself a specialist structural engineer by profession and has been brought up in a modern tradition. After a phase of prosperous worldly pursuits, he underwent a spiritual transformation which diverted him and his intellectual energies towards our scriptural spiritual heritage. Thus commenced the phase of his life devoted to a deep spiritual quest of the enduring vitality and verity of our spiritual literature and lore. He has written with prolific constancy on the religious classics. The present work is one of them. The spiritual transformation from a man of science and setting him on a journey of exploration of the spiritual dimensions of human personality, the inner man, can occur only by rare divine grace.

 

Sri Raghavendra’s present work on "Sri Visnu Sahasranama" has the impress of a true seeker. His vision of beatific, mystic glory and grace of the thousand auspicious and celestial names of the Supreme being as a great liberating force and spiritual redemption of man is truly elevating. The commentary, which contains well researched allusions to other spiritual texts, is indicative of the author’s intuitive attainments. Sri Raghavendra is truly blessed.

 

It is a fitting tribute to the rare and rich talents of the author that the T.T. Devasthanams administration has agreed to provide financial assistance for this publication.

 

May the Lord of the Seven Hills shower His Blessings on the author and the reader.

 

Introduction

 

Sri Visnu Sahasranama is the essence of Vedas, Upanisads and Bhagavad Gita. The Supreme God is one, nameless and formless but takes innumerable names and forms. There is no limit to the powers and glory of God. Sri Visnu Sahasranama is the thousand names of one Supreme God, the Supreme Self, the all-pervading Supreme spirit Sri Hari Narayana. The names of God is necessary for us, otherwise we cannot relate ourselves with God without giving name and form in initial stages. Name and form is the only way our mind functions. Once we transcend the mind, names and forms become redundant.

 

Thousand names of the Supreme God depicts thousand divine qualities and nature of God, whom we worship in innumerable names and forms. Even we try to give form to the formless, since Re is eternal, immortal and creator, sustainer and destroyer of entire universe, of time and space.

 

The greatest wonder that the Supreme God has created is human being. Man is differentiated from animals by the faculty of mind, which is the means of thinking and discrimination. With this mind we are able to distinguish right from wrong, good from bad and comprehend all the differences and discriminations in this universe. This human being is the culmination of the evolutionary process starting from the single cell beings. All creatures undergo changes and adapt themselves to the changing environment guided and controlled by the Supreme intelligence that is ingrained in nature.

 

Another faculty that all living creatures are provided with is the consciousness. This is the faculty given to see, to hear, to smell, to taste and to experience. This is the background for all matters and objects in the universe to exist. This is also the background for the perception of all matter and objects by the living beings. This consciousness is the source of all existence.

 

The purpose and goal of all creatures to live in this universe is the happiness one enjoys after taking birth on this earth. Everything on earth, all nature and creatures is beautiful and blissful. All experiences end up in joy. This is the quality of the creation in this universe.

 

All bodies are formed by the’ composition of the elements air, water, fire, earth, sun, moon, ether, sky, intellect, ego, and the mind. This body so made is kept alive by the vital force prana, the divine and Supreme energy. This is the force that makes the person real with name and form performing various functions and makes it real. When the body is not able to hold the vital force in the body, due to sickness, disease, old age or any other reason, the body dies and disintegrates into elements.

 

While the body is alive it breathes air, drinks water, eats food, enjoys sex with the opposite sex and indulges in various activities. The beings derive happiness in all these activities. This pleasure is the nature of all the beings as long as they are alive. This bliss is the nature and quality of all the natural elements.

 

These faculties of Supreme intelligence, Supreme consciousness and Supreme bliss which accompany the vital force prana must have a source from which they have evolved.

 

yat bhavam tat bhavati-If we think a jar half full, it looks half full. If we look at its half emptiness, it looks half empty. If we go to a sports ground and look at the people running with joy and happiness, we also get involved in the game and feel exhilarated.

 

If we go to a hospital, we also feel anxious and depressed by the atmosphere. If we go to a temple, we are filled with the hope and faith. So each environment has its own atmosphere by which one is influenced and affected. It is the way we look at things, and positive mental attitude helps to infuse confidence and happiness in ourselves and our surroundings.

 

So also our attitude to life. This life is a journey without end and only the play goes on with change of players every now and then. There is no loser nor winner. The whole thing is a dynamic metamorphosis with everyone feeling that he or she is the central figure and ultimately resigning to fate. Everyone attains the object of their desire and everything culminates in knowledge. This desire is the force that drives everyone to function for the attainment of their desire. The goal of all activity is happiness in one form or the other and to attain this happiness, the help of Supreme intelligence is also provided by the Supreme Self. It is the individual effort along with the guidance of the Supreme intelligence which drives people in the direction of satisfaction of their desires whose product is happiness. So the first question we have to ask is whether what we are doing gives happiness to us as well as to others who are with us.

 

Work is the means of attainment and is the way for attaining all desires. It is the means of purification. It is the means of livelihood and gives the right to fight for one’s rights. Work is the support of one’s standing in society. The work one does without attachment to the fruits of work is the means of liberation. Nothing comes free in this world. We have to pay for water, for fresh air, for food and for living. We have to pay for what we take and what we give also. This right to take and give comes from work. When we work, we are entitled to the rights of work. That only is ours. We have the right to give and sacrifice only what is ours. This giving and sacrifice gives us joy and happiness. The happiness is not in receiving from someone but in giving to as many. This giving is the nature of the Supreme Self. He has created all these great elements air, water, fire, earth, sun, moon, ego, intellect, ether, sky and all the-planets and the stars that together make up this body and the nature. From this earth and nature only are all bodies evolved. We are the children of nature and this nature is the means of life on this earth.

 

Our body and the mind is the lower nature of the Supreme Self created by the Supreme Self. The vital force or prana is the divine power and energy that keeps all bodies alive. This vital force is always accompanied by the intelligence, consciousness and bliss. These are the higher nature of the Supreme Self. Whatever beings are alive are conscious, intelligent and enjoy bliss and happiness. The happiness is the nature and quality of our self which is in us which we call it self, or the soul or the atma. This is the eternal part (amsa) of the Supreme Self which having created the body resides in the body and experiences the quality of nature and its own creation. Being seated in the body, it thinks of itself as the body and is therefore confined and also limited by the adjuncts of the body. Since the body is perishable, (all bodies which are limited and finite are perishable.) the soul thinks it dies and takes birth with the body. Since the soul or atman is an infinitesimal part of the Supreme Self, it is deathless and changeless. It takes any number of bodies one after the other as per its desires and enjoys the quality of nature as per its desires. What it wants, it gets. What it desires, it enjoys. It totters between life and death of the bodies, being attached to the qualities of the body.

 

The qualities of the body being dual in nature, it suffers and enjoys. It cries with pain and exults with pleasure, revels in achievement and shrinks with failure. Since the mind is relative in nature and function, it compares with all it comes across and verifies itself. It thinks high with the low and rich with the poor. It considers intelligent among the dull and righteous among the wicked. There is always a better one and there is always a lower one than the other. The mind always relates with the other and the ‘other’ is the mind. It never finds bliss but jumps from one end of mental condition to the other. Rarely it is static and peaceful. Mind always deals with the limited and finite. It always thinks in terms of images. The mind experiences the quality of the image it thinks of. The fruit of the activity of mind is always pain and misery.

 

To overcome this pain and misery, we have to take shelter under the changeless, timeless and limitless Supreme God whose nature is Supreme consciousness, Supreme intelligence and Supreme bliss. The mind experiences the nature of the thought it is immersed in. When the mind contemplates on the Supreme Self, it stops since it cannot conceptualise the Supreme Self. With this prayer and meditation, the mind experiences the joy and bliss which is the higher nature of the Supreme Self (Paramatman).

 

The goal of all knowledge and human activity is happiness. We do not intend to do any work which does not result in prosperity and happiness. This prosperity itself, we think, is the means of happiness. No doubt this wealth and prosperity is the means for physical and material well- being, but does not result in bliss which is the essence of happiness. The prayer and worship of the Supreme Self gives immense joy since the mind is temporarily dissolved in the Supreme bliss. The mind can conceptualise only the name and form since these are the only means of relationship with the mind. Even though the Supreme Self has no name and form, since it is the source, support and devourer of all this universe and pervades the entire universe, it is given several names that suit many regions, religions, many situations and places. People worship these names and forms of the one and the same Supreme Self, the all-pervading Supreme spirit Sri Hari Narayana. These names and forms vary from place to place, time to time, but is the single changeless, deathless limitless Supreme reality.

 

We call the Supreme Self, the all-pervading Supreme spirit, the indestructible divine energy whose higher nature is the intelligence, consciousness and bliss, by the name Sri Hari Narayana He is also called as Supreme Brahman. This Supreme Brahman is also the entity which expresses itself as Brahma the creator, Sri Visnu the supporter and provider and Mahesvara who is the devourer of this universe at the end of the kalpa. They are the three aspects of the Supreme Self, representing the three different functions. They are one and the same in reality. Only the Supreme Self is worshipped in different names and forms assigning different functions in different regions and religions from time to time.

 

In Hindu religion we worship the Supreme Self, the all-pervading Supreme spirit Sri Hari Narayana by a thousand names arranged under the heading of ‘Sri Visnu Sahasranama’. They are indicative of the glory, the magnificence, the nature and quality of the Supreme Self, which the words are trying to reach. The words are meant to describe the known and the limited, whereas the Supreme Self is nameless, formless, unlimited and eternal. The words return without touching that Supreme truth. These thousand names are only indicative of the Supreme Self, since there are any number of names to sing the glory of that Supreme truth.

 

That is the omnipotent, omnipresent and the omniscient. That is the magnificent and the merciful. By singing these thousand names of Sri Hari Narayana, the all-pervading Supreme spirit, we are cleansed of our bodily impurities, mental worries and anxieties and we experience the bliss which is not of the mind and the world, but in spite of them.

 

We are not the body and mind alone, but the Self, the soul. Body is made of great elements such as air, water, fire, earth and other components. The mind is the lower nature of the Supreme Self which represents the outer world in human being. The Self whose essence is the Supreme Self is the changeless, deathless Supreme divine energy which is neither created nor destroyed and whose nature is intelligence, consciousness and bliss. By praying to the name and form of the Supreme Self, the all-pervading Supreme spirit we attain health and wealth; by worshipping the name and form of the Supreme Self, Sri Visnu, our mind is purified of all thoughts and worries which are the cause of misery. These are the divine qualities of the Supreme Lord. By imbibing these divine qualities, we also attain to divinity. As mentioned in the Sri Visnu Sahasranama, "Nara and Narayana" are the two ends of existance, the micro and the macro. Macro includes the micro. Nara, the human being by attaining these divine qualities has hope and faith to merge in Narayana, the macro.

 

By meditating on the nameless and formless Supreme Brahman, our mind attains the nature of the Self and feels the oneness with the nature of the Supreme Self.

 

Here an effort is made to explain the meaning of the thousand names of the all-pervading Supreme Self Sri Hari Narayana. who is also·referred as Sri Visnu. These are just the explanation and expansion of his glories who is nameless and formless but is the cause of all things that exist. He is the existence itself.

 

Sri Visnu Sahasranama are the thousand names of the all-pervading Supreme spirit Sri Hari Narayana, which are chanted with Supreme devotion. They proclaim the quality and nature of the Supreme Self who is beyond all qualities but the creator of all qualities. They also proclaim the nature and quality of the individual self which has attained Supreme knowledge and liberation.

 

While chanting these thousand names of Sri Hari Narayana we have to add the Om before and after each name of the Supreme Lord. ‘Om’ is the all-pervading sign, symbol and sound of Supreme Brahman, which is the nearest indication of the Supreme Self. The chanting of this ‘Om’, the symbol of Supreme Self, gives Supreme bliss.

 

Lord Venkataramana Svamy at Tirupati is the manifestation of Sri Visnu, the all-pervading Supreme spirit Sri Hari Narayana, who is blessing the devotees leading them to Supreme consciousness, knowledge, prosperity and bliss.

 

Sample Pages



Sri Visnu Sahasranama

Item Code:
NAG663
Cover:
Hardcover
Edition:
2002
Language:
Transliterated Sanskrit Text with English Translation
Size:
9 inch X 5.5 inch
Pages:
1080
Other Details:
Weight of the Book: 1.1 kg
Price:
$50.00   Shipping Free - 4 to 6 days
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About the Author

 

Shri T.N. Raghavendra was born in the year 1941 hailing from a hoary family in Karnataka of great lineage. A technocrat by education, training and wide experience, Shri Raghavendra is an expert on foundation engineering. Though deeply immersed in mundane affairs Shri Raghavendra has taken a quantum leap into the esoteric metaphysical field in recent years. He has authored some 14 books in a time span of less than a decade on Vedantic texts such as the Geetha, Upanishads, Smritis and the Rigveda. His work on the Rigveda in eleven volumes-a clear manifestation of the grace of his Guru (the presiding deity of Mantralaya-the qualified Brahman-the all-pervading Sri Hari Narayana) shines like the bright stars on a clear evening sky. Anyone, even an atheist coming into contact with him, personally or by perusal of his books will invariably develop a sense of deep devotion to the all-pervading Reality. His word can appropriately be christened Prasthana Dwaya.

 

Preface

 

Spiritual literature is like honey which we can take only a sip at a time. Knowledge is power and divine knowledge brings unflinching faith and devotion. The worldly person asks what is god and where is god as though it is an object to be possessed and controlled. The worldly mind obsessed with matter rebels at spiritual literature. The spiritual knowledge takes us beyond the vagaries of the world and the mind. Once we experience the peace and tranquillity that emanates from the spiritual knowledge, the mind overcomes its own resistance.

 

SrI Visnu Sahasranama is the spiritual literature par excellence. It is an ocean of divine knowledge depicting the power and glory of the Supreme Lord. For the seekers of truth and divine knowledge, it is the source of light. For devotees, it is the Supreme goal.

 

I have put in my small effort in explaining the meaning of every nama (name) depicting the power and glory of the Supreme Lord by bringing together the statements of Supreme truth as explained in the Vedas, Upanisads, Bhagavadgita and other holy scriptures. This divine knowledge declared in our holy scriptures is what makes our country great and enduring. This knowledge and devotion is what gives us strength in times of doubts and difficulties.

 

I have borrowed extensively the mantras and their meaning from various upanisadic texts. I am grateful to authors and publishers of various books specially to Sri Ramakrishna Math who are in the forefront for spreading our immortal scriptures.

 

I am thankful to the T.T. Devasthanams for the financial assistance.

 

I am also thankful to Sri Nithyananda Compugraphics for their painstaking efforts in bringing out this difficult work of Sanskrit mantras in English.

 

Many great scholars have appreciated and have given encouragement for this work. I am highly thankful to them.

This devotional work, I offer at the lotus feet of the Supreme Lord Venkataramana Swamy of the Seven Hills and pray that all readers of this book be blessed by the Supreme Lord.

 

Foreword

 

I am indeed happy to inscribe the foreword to Sri T.N. Raghavendra’s exposition of the glory and exalted spiritual merit of Sri Visnu Sahasranama. Sri Raghavendra is himself a specialist structural engineer by profession and has been brought up in a modern tradition. After a phase of prosperous worldly pursuits, he underwent a spiritual transformation which diverted him and his intellectual energies towards our scriptural spiritual heritage. Thus commenced the phase of his life devoted to a deep spiritual quest of the enduring vitality and verity of our spiritual literature and lore. He has written with prolific constancy on the religious classics. The present work is one of them. The spiritual transformation from a man of science and setting him on a journey of exploration of the spiritual dimensions of human personality, the inner man, can occur only by rare divine grace.

 

Sri Raghavendra’s present work on "Sri Visnu Sahasranama" has the impress of a true seeker. His vision of beatific, mystic glory and grace of the thousand auspicious and celestial names of the Supreme being as a great liberating force and spiritual redemption of man is truly elevating. The commentary, which contains well researched allusions to other spiritual texts, is indicative of the author’s intuitive attainments. Sri Raghavendra is truly blessed.

 

It is a fitting tribute to the rare and rich talents of the author that the T.T. Devasthanams administration has agreed to provide financial assistance for this publication.

 

May the Lord of the Seven Hills shower His Blessings on the author and the reader.

 

Introduction

 

Sri Visnu Sahasranama is the essence of Vedas, Upanisads and Bhagavad Gita. The Supreme God is one, nameless and formless but takes innumerable names and forms. There is no limit to the powers and glory of God. Sri Visnu Sahasranama is the thousand names of one Supreme God, the Supreme Self, the all-pervading Supreme spirit Sri Hari Narayana. The names of God is necessary for us, otherwise we cannot relate ourselves with God without giving name and form in initial stages. Name and form is the only way our mind functions. Once we transcend the mind, names and forms become redundant.

 

Thousand names of the Supreme God depicts thousand divine qualities and nature of God, whom we worship in innumerable names and forms. Even we try to give form to the formless, since Re is eternal, immortal and creator, sustainer and destroyer of entire universe, of time and space.

 

The greatest wonder that the Supreme God has created is human being. Man is differentiated from animals by the faculty of mind, which is the means of thinking and discrimination. With this mind we are able to distinguish right from wrong, good from bad and comprehend all the differences and discriminations in this universe. This human being is the culmination of the evolutionary process starting from the single cell beings. All creatures undergo changes and adapt themselves to the changing environment guided and controlled by the Supreme intelligence that is ingrained in nature.

 

Another faculty that all living creatures are provided with is the consciousness. This is the faculty given to see, to hear, to smell, to taste and to experience. This is the background for all matters and objects in the universe to exist. This is also the background for the perception of all matter and objects by the living beings. This consciousness is the source of all existence.

 

The purpose and goal of all creatures to live in this universe is the happiness one enjoys after taking birth on this earth. Everything on earth, all nature and creatures is beautiful and blissful. All experiences end up in joy. This is the quality of the creation in this universe.

 

All bodies are formed by the’ composition of the elements air, water, fire, earth, sun, moon, ether, sky, intellect, ego, and the mind. This body so made is kept alive by the vital force prana, the divine and Supreme energy. This is the force that makes the person real with name and form performing various functions and makes it real. When the body is not able to hold the vital force in the body, due to sickness, disease, old age or any other reason, the body dies and disintegrates into elements.

 

While the body is alive it breathes air, drinks water, eats food, enjoys sex with the opposite sex and indulges in various activities. The beings derive happiness in all these activities. This pleasure is the nature of all the beings as long as they are alive. This bliss is the nature and quality of all the natural elements.

 

These faculties of Supreme intelligence, Supreme consciousness and Supreme bliss which accompany the vital force prana must have a source from which they have evolved.

 

yat bhavam tat bhavati-If we think a jar half full, it looks half full. If we look at its half emptiness, it looks half empty. If we go to a sports ground and look at the people running with joy and happiness, we also get involved in the game and feel exhilarated.

 

If we go to a hospital, we also feel anxious and depressed by the atmosphere. If we go to a temple, we are filled with the hope and faith. So each environment has its own atmosphere by which one is influenced and affected. It is the way we look at things, and positive mental attitude helps to infuse confidence and happiness in ourselves and our surroundings.

 

So also our attitude to life. This life is a journey without end and only the play goes on with change of players every now and then. There is no loser nor winner. The whole thing is a dynamic metamorphosis with everyone feeling that he or she is the central figure and ultimately resigning to fate. Everyone attains the object of their desire and everything culminates in knowledge. This desire is the force that drives everyone to function for the attainment of their desire. The goal of all activity is happiness in one form or the other and to attain this happiness, the help of Supreme intelligence is also provided by the Supreme Self. It is the individual effort along with the guidance of the Supreme intelligence which drives people in the direction of satisfaction of their desires whose product is happiness. So the first question we have to ask is whether what we are doing gives happiness to us as well as to others who are with us.

 

Work is the means of attainment and is the way for attaining all desires. It is the means of purification. It is the means of livelihood and gives the right to fight for one’s rights. Work is the support of one’s standing in society. The work one does without attachment to the fruits of work is the means of liberation. Nothing comes free in this world. We have to pay for water, for fresh air, for food and for living. We have to pay for what we take and what we give also. This right to take and give comes from work. When we work, we are entitled to the rights of work. That only is ours. We have the right to give and sacrifice only what is ours. This giving and sacrifice gives us joy and happiness. The happiness is not in receiving from someone but in giving to as many. This giving is the nature of the Supreme Self. He has created all these great elements air, water, fire, earth, sun, moon, ego, intellect, ether, sky and all the-planets and the stars that together make up this body and the nature. From this earth and nature only are all bodies evolved. We are the children of nature and this nature is the means of life on this earth.

 

Our body and the mind is the lower nature of the Supreme Self created by the Supreme Self. The vital force or prana is the divine power and energy that keeps all bodies alive. This vital force is always accompanied by the intelligence, consciousness and bliss. These are the higher nature of the Supreme Self. Whatever beings are alive are conscious, intelligent and enjoy bliss and happiness. The happiness is the nature and quality of our self which is in us which we call it self, or the soul or the atma. This is the eternal part (amsa) of the Supreme Self which having created the body resides in the body and experiences the quality of nature and its own creation. Being seated in the body, it thinks of itself as the body and is therefore confined and also limited by the adjuncts of the body. Since the body is perishable, (all bodies which are limited and finite are perishable.) the soul thinks it dies and takes birth with the body. Since the soul or atman is an infinitesimal part of the Supreme Self, it is deathless and changeless. It takes any number of bodies one after the other as per its desires and enjoys the quality of nature as per its desires. What it wants, it gets. What it desires, it enjoys. It totters between life and death of the bodies, being attached to the qualities of the body.

 

The qualities of the body being dual in nature, it suffers and enjoys. It cries with pain and exults with pleasure, revels in achievement and shrinks with failure. Since the mind is relative in nature and function, it compares with all it comes across and verifies itself. It thinks high with the low and rich with the poor. It considers intelligent among the dull and righteous among the wicked. There is always a better one and there is always a lower one than the other. The mind always relates with the other and the ‘other’ is the mind. It never finds bliss but jumps from one end of mental condition to the other. Rarely it is static and peaceful. Mind always deals with the limited and finite. It always thinks in terms of images. The mind experiences the quality of the image it thinks of. The fruit of the activity of mind is always pain and misery.

 

To overcome this pain and misery, we have to take shelter under the changeless, timeless and limitless Supreme God whose nature is Supreme consciousness, Supreme intelligence and Supreme bliss. The mind experiences the nature of the thought it is immersed in. When the mind contemplates on the Supreme Self, it stops since it cannot conceptualise the Supreme Self. With this prayer and meditation, the mind experiences the joy and bliss which is the higher nature of the Supreme Self (Paramatman).

 

The goal of all knowledge and human activity is happiness. We do not intend to do any work which does not result in prosperity and happiness. This prosperity itself, we think, is the means of happiness. No doubt this wealth and prosperity is the means for physical and material well- being, but does not result in bliss which is the essence of happiness. The prayer and worship of the Supreme Self gives immense joy since the mind is temporarily dissolved in the Supreme bliss. The mind can conceptualise only the name and form since these are the only means of relationship with the mind. Even though the Supreme Self has no name and form, since it is the source, support and devourer of all this universe and pervades the entire universe, it is given several names that suit many regions, religions, many situations and places. People worship these names and forms of the one and the same Supreme Self, the all-pervading Supreme spirit Sri Hari Narayana. These names and forms vary from place to place, time to time, but is the single changeless, deathless limitless Supreme reality.

 

We call the Supreme Self, the all-pervading Supreme spirit, the indestructible divine energy whose higher nature is the intelligence, consciousness and bliss, by the name Sri Hari Narayana He is also called as Supreme Brahman. This Supreme Brahman is also the entity which expresses itself as Brahma the creator, Sri Visnu the supporter and provider and Mahesvara who is the devourer of this universe at the end of the kalpa. They are the three aspects of the Supreme Self, representing the three different functions. They are one and the same in reality. Only the Supreme Self is worshipped in different names and forms assigning different functions in different regions and religions from time to time.

 

In Hindu religion we worship the Supreme Self, the all-pervading Supreme spirit Sri Hari Narayana by a thousand names arranged under the heading of ‘Sri Visnu Sahasranama’. They are indicative of the glory, the magnificence, the nature and quality of the Supreme Self, which the words are trying to reach. The words are meant to describe the known and the limited, whereas the Supreme Self is nameless, formless, unlimited and eternal. The words return without touching that Supreme truth. These thousand names are only indicative of the Supreme Self, since there are any number of names to sing the glory of that Supreme truth.

 

That is the omnipotent, omnipresent and the omniscient. That is the magnificent and the merciful. By singing these thousand names of Sri Hari Narayana, the all-pervading Supreme spirit, we are cleansed of our bodily impurities, mental worries and anxieties and we experience the bliss which is not of the mind and the world, but in spite of them.

 

We are not the body and mind alone, but the Self, the soul. Body is made of great elements such as air, water, fire, earth and other components. The mind is the lower nature of the Supreme Self which represents the outer world in human being. The Self whose essence is the Supreme Self is the changeless, deathless Supreme divine energy which is neither created nor destroyed and whose nature is intelligence, consciousness and bliss. By praying to the name and form of the Supreme Self, the all-pervading Supreme spirit we attain health and wealth; by worshipping the name and form of the Supreme Self, Sri Visnu, our mind is purified of all thoughts and worries which are the cause of misery. These are the divine qualities of the Supreme Lord. By imbibing these divine qualities, we also attain to divinity. As mentioned in the Sri Visnu Sahasranama, "Nara and Narayana" are the two ends of existance, the micro and the macro. Macro includes the micro. Nara, the human being by attaining these divine qualities has hope and faith to merge in Narayana, the macro.

 

By meditating on the nameless and formless Supreme Brahman, our mind attains the nature of the Self and feels the oneness with the nature of the Supreme Self.

 

Here an effort is made to explain the meaning of the thousand names of the all-pervading Supreme Self Sri Hari Narayana. who is also·referred as Sri Visnu. These are just the explanation and expansion of his glories who is nameless and formless but is the cause of all things that exist. He is the existence itself.

 

Sri Visnu Sahasranama are the thousand names of the all-pervading Supreme spirit Sri Hari Narayana, which are chanted with Supreme devotion. They proclaim the quality and nature of the Supreme Self who is beyond all qualities but the creator of all qualities. They also proclaim the nature and quality of the individual self which has attained Supreme knowledge and liberation.

 

While chanting these thousand names of Sri Hari Narayana we have to add the Om before and after each name of the Supreme Lord. ‘Om’ is the all-pervading sign, symbol and sound of Supreme Brahman, which is the nearest indication of the Supreme Self. The chanting of this ‘Om’, the symbol of Supreme Self, gives Supreme bliss.

 

Lord Venkataramana Svamy at Tirupati is the manifestation of Sri Visnu, the all-pervading Supreme spirit Sri Hari Narayana, who is blessing the devotees leading them to Supreme consciousness, knowledge, prosperity and bliss.

 

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