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Introduction

Location: Kalavai, a small town in the Vellore district of Tamil Nadu, India.
Date: February 13, 1907.
A young boy of thirteen is chosen to become the 68th Pitadhipathi of Sri Kanchi Kamakoti Pitam, in the illustrious parampara of Acharyas who adorned the Pitam established by Sri Adhi Sankara more than 2500 years ago.

That boy is none other then His Holiness Jagadguru Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswathi Swamigal. To millions of devotees he was simply ‘Periyava’- the revered one or Maha-Periyava. ‘Periyava’ in Tamil means a great person. That term however has acquired a special meaning because it has come to refer to His Holiness. It is a term that at once conveys endearment, reverence and devotion. It would never be mentioned in a casual manner. Mahaswami and Paramacharya are his other well-known appellations.

The Paramacharya was the Pitadhipathi of the Mutt for 87 long years. During this period, Sri Kanchi Kamakoti Pitam acquired new strength as an institution that propogated Sri Adhi Sankara’s teachings. The devotion, fervour and intensity with which the Paramacharya practised what Adhi Sankara had preached, is unparalleled. He lived a Spartan life. Throughout his life, the main focus of his concern and activities was rejuvenating Vedha adhyayana, the Dharma Sasthras and the age old tradition which had suffered decline. ‘Vedha rakshanam’ was his very life breath and he referred to this in most of his public discourses and private conversations. His prodding regular support to Vedha Patasalas through the Vedhic scholars, holding regular sadhas which included discussions on arts and culture- these led to a renewed interest in Vedhic religion, Dharma sasthras and Sanskrit. His long tenure as Pitathipathi was the golden era of the Kanchi Camelot Pitam.

Paramacharya was a walking university. Scholars of all sects, not only from all over India but also from countries abroad came to him and deemed it a blessing and a privilege to go back enlightened after meeting him. His regular visitors ranged from the most ordinary village fold to the highest in the land. Presidents and Prime ordinary village folk to the highest in the land. Presidents and Prime Ministers, Kings and Queens, Highnesses and Excellencies came to spend a few moments with him and seek his blessings.

That the Paramacharya was an extraordinary phenomenon can be seen from this incident. When he was in his late eighties he left Kanchipuram and undertook a padha yathra through Karnataka, Maharashtra and Andhra. Before he returned to Kanchipuram he made all arrangements for the construction of an exquisite Nataraja temple at Satara (Uttara Chidambaram). The uniqueness about this temple is the fact that the states of Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, and Maharashtra came together to build the 5 doorways to the temple. The state of Kerala supplied the entire wood required for the temple. It was only his grace and moral influence that made this possible.

The Paramacharya’s catholicity of outlook was extraordinary. He was the Advaitha Acharaya. He was the authentic spokesman of Hindu religion and its Dharma Shastras and of Sanathana Dharma. He even believed that it was Vedhic religion that had prevailed all over the world in ancient times. But, just as he had high regard for the Acharyas of other philosophical doctrines like Ramanuja nnd Madhva and the Nayanmars of Saiva Siddhanta, he had great respect for Jesus and Mohamed Nabi, the prophet. He could be so considerate as to express the view that those who indulged in proselytisation did so out of their conviction that their religion alone could secure redemption.

February 13, 2006 marks the beginning of the 100th years of the Paramacharya’s Sanyasa Swikarana (entering the ascetic order) and Pitaarohana (becoming the head of the Sri Kanchi Kamokottipitam). Sri Kanchi Mahaswami Peetarohana Shatabdi Mahotsava Trust has been specially formed to celebrate this significant milestone in the spiritual history of India.

The main objective of the Trust is to spread the thoughts and the message of the Paramacharya across the world, not just to his devotees, but even to others who might never have had the opportunity to have his dharsan. With this objective in view the Trust has undertaken on priority the translation into English and other major Indian languages of his discourses in Tamil (upansayam). To begin with, we have chosen ‘Deivathin Kural’-Voice of God in Tamil. It is a collection of the Paramacharya’s discourses starting from 1932. These are seven volumes each of about 1000 pages. His talks cover a wide range of topics apart from all aspects of Vedhic dharma and Hindu religion which is the main focus. It is a veritable encyclopedia of Hindu religion and dharma to which people refer for authentic information on these aspects.

‘Deivathin Kural’ is a monumental work by Sri Ra Ganapathy and it occupies a special place among many books written about Paramacharya. Sri Ganapathy painstakingly collated all of Paramacharya’s talks, conversations, casual comments, answers to questions etc covering several aspects of our ancient religion, dharma and culture. Sri Ganapathy not only collected the material but also collated and organized under various subjects everything that the Paramacharya had spoken about a subject over many years at several places.

The purpose of the English translation is two fold. One is to reach Paramacharya’s thoughts and message to a wider audience. The second is to use the English translation as the basic text for translation into other Indian languages. The original in Tamil portrays in large measure the simplicity and clarity of thoughts and expressions and the unique story telling style of the Paramacharya. It has been our attempt to capture it in English. As readers will know this is not an easy task. In one of his talks, while explaining the need to protect the Vedhas in their original form, the Paramacharya himself has, in his characteristic style, referred to the limitations of any translation.

The Paramacharya’s observations are a warning to us and we are deeply conscious of our responsibility. Effort has been made to address the average reader through this work in simple language. Since the English version is to be the base from which translation into other Indian languages will be done, suitable diacritical markings have been used for Sanskrit and Tamil words. Wherever necessary the actual Sanskrit words and Slockas have been given with diacritical markings and the meanings are also given along with the words. This should make it more convenient for the reader than a separate glossary at the end.

It is usual to share one’s good and memorable experiences with others. When two devotees of the Paramacharya meet, it turns out to be an occasion for sharing of experiences. Entire train journeys could be spent talking only about him and his various qualities. He has indeed created a huge family, truly a Vasudaiva Kutumbhakam. It is the hope and wish of Sri Kanchi Mahaswami Peetarohana Shatabdi Mahotsaa Trust that readers will experience the Paramacharya through these pages, which in itself would be an elevating experience.

His talks do more than providing insight into Vedhic Dharma and Hindu religion. There is indeed hope that inspite of the declining moral values all around, dharma will prevail. It should also be clear that mere wishful thinking will not make that happen. All of us have a duty and responsibility towards making it happen. The many schemes which the Paramacharya introduced are simple and effective. If any thing, we have to revive many of his practical ideas and implement them.

The blessings of H.H. Sri Jayendra Saraswathi Swamigal and H.H. Sri Sanara Vijayendra Saraswathi Swamigal, the 69th and 70th Acharyas of Sri Kanchi Kamakoti Pitam have provided encouragement to this Trust to embark on a project of this magnitude. It is their Sankalpa that the Paramacharya’s message should reach every Indian wherever he may be. We are overwhelmed by the responsibility they have placed on us.

Millions of the Paramacharya’s devotees sincerely believe that He is alive even today and He is guiding us on the path of dharma. It is his spirit that acts as the beacon in these troubled times. It is through his grace that this work is being published.

 

Contents

 

  Srimukham i
  Gurusthuthi v
  Introduction ix
  Acknowledgements xiv
  Guidance to Pronounciation xvii
1. Mangalarambam 1
  A life blessed with sixteen is a great life 3
  Remedy for all obstacles 3
  The greatness of sixteen 6
  Shodasa Nama Slokas 7
  Sumukar 8
  How Ganapathi wit Human face became elephant-faced 9
  One who is of the form of joy 10
  One with the good mouth 10
  The greatness of the elephant’s mouth and its philosophy 11
  Ekadanthar: ‘One who will do his utmost to others’ 12
  One who is also a female 13
  Vigneswara Gayathri 13
  Kapilar: Vinayaka of tiruchengattankudi 14
  Vathapi Ganapathi: Some historical details 15
  The elephant- Faced and Agasthya 18
  Gajakarnakar 20
  Lambhodharar 23
  Vikatar 24
  Vikata Vinayakas in some holy places 26
  Vikata Chakra Vinayakar 28
  Vigna Rajar 28
  Noble purpose in creating obstacles too 29
  ‘Personal’ Experience 30
  Vinayakar; Double Pillaiyar 32
  The famous name 35
  The qualifying letter ‘Vi’ 36
  Vi-Nayakar in two meanings 36
  The names of Pillaiyar in Amaram 37
  Dhumakethu 38
  Ganadhyakshar 40
  Bhalachandrar 41
  Pillaiyar and the moon 43
  Gajananar 44
  The great qualities of the elephant 44
  Animals which have divine links 47
  One who has within himself all the beings 48
  The outline of the original 49
  The face and the mouth 50
  Vakrathundar 51
  Surpakarnar 52
  Herambar 53
  Elephant which is worshipped by lion 54
  The five-faced one with the lion as the vehicle 56
  Skandha Purvajar 56
  The greatness of being Murugan’s elder brother 57
  The role of the elder in the birth of Muruga 57
  The role of the elder in Murugan’s marriage 61
  The role of the elder in Murugan’s Sanyasam 62
  Murugan who has all the benefits of the Phalasruthi 63
  The greatness of the name of Skanda 66
  Let us start the day by remembering the elder brother 68
2 Guru 69
  Desikar who gives Upadesam 71
  The way and direction in life 71
  Purvoththaram: East- North 71
  The world ‘Dhich’ both as noun and verb 72
  Desam, Upadesam 73
  The meaning of ‘Upa’ 75
  The word ‘Desikar’ with two meanings 77
  Word that shows cordial relationship 77
  Higher than the mother and the father is the Guru 78
  Acharya Dharmam 79
  The greatness of the mother and the father 79
  The ‘cucumber mukthi’ of the Jnani 83
  The love and sacrifice of the guru 87
  No Jnanam without Guru’s Upadesam 89
  The great merits of the word ‘Desika’ 92
  Paramacharyar 94
  Devi as Desika 95
3 Adhvaitham 99
  The practice of Adhvaitham 101
  The gist of religious philosophies 101
  Adhvaitham which is so different from others 102
  What appears simple is so difficult 104
  Moksham through iswara’s grace (Anugraham) 106
  Effort has to be continued even if the goal is delayed 109
  Sadhana Chathushtayam 111
  The path laid down by Acharya on the lines of Vedhas 111
  Karma and Bhakthi- Preliminary to Jnana 114
  Sraddha (Faith) is necessary 115
  The qualification for spiritual practice 118
  The highest Sadhana is only for the Sanyasi 121
  Why should what is appropriate to a Sanyasi be prescribed for every one? 126
  Two different paths for two different types of people 127
  The reason why it is being told to all 131
  About Bhakthiyogam 134
  Basic knowledge of Adhvaitha for all 135
  Discrimination of the permanent and the ephemeral 139
  Vairagyam: (Distaste for worldly desires) 146
  Six kinds of wealth 159
  Samam- Dhamam 160
  What is Samam? 160
  Uparathi 171
  Thithikshai 173
  Sraddha 182
  Samadhanam 194
  Who is entitled to formally learn Upanishad? 202
  Strictness in Samadhanam 204
  Paramathma’s six and Jivathma’s six 205
  Mumukkshuthvam 206
  Why is the ultimate state described only as ‘Release’? 207
  Mumukshu: As defined by Acharya 210
  The lower level, Middle level mumukshu 214
  Guru’s prasad 216
  Acharya and ancient texts on Mumukshu 217
  Four kinds of spiritual army 224
  Before the three parts of the third stage 224
  Bhakthi: Its place in Jnana Marga 225
  What is Bhakthi? 227
  What is love? 227
  Anthahkaranam (Inner sense organs) and the heart 228
  Ahankaram and love 231
  What is the object of the love of a spiritual aspirant? (Athma Sadhaka) 233
  Bhakthi of the Nirguna and Saguna forms 235
  A pleasing love which is full of life 237
  For the removal of haughtiness also 239
  Ahankaram in Sadhana: Two stages 240
  Bhakthi and Hrudhayam 243
  The nadis of the Hrudhayam; the life of a Jnani subsiding and the life of others departing 246
  Death during Uththarayanam- The correct meaning 255
  Two differing fruits of Karma Yogam 256
  Nadi going from the ‘Hrudhayam’ To the head- wrongly understood 257
  The Bhakthi of Jnana Marga is greater than that of Bhakthi Marga 262
  Bhakthi itself is Jnana as shown by Krishna 266
  Third stage 269
  Reununciation 269
  Serial names in Vishnu Sahasranamam 277
  Sanyasakruth Samo 278
  Sravana etc. As the injunction of the Vedhas 279
  Sravanam and Susrusha (service to guru) 280
  Can a guru who has had anubhuthi (spiritual experience) be found? 283
  To be after a single target 283
  The characteristics of sravana, Manana and Nidhidhyasana 285
  The state before Siddhi 286
  Mananam which transcends the little intelligence: Nidhidhyasanam which transcends emotions 287
  For the two differing attitudes (Bhavana) to go 289
  The greatness of Mananam-Nidhidhyasanam 291
  Worm becoming a wasp; To make a worm a wasp 292
  What needs to be done immediately 297
4 Saundaryalahari 299
  The Acharya- A divine incarnation 301
  The saundaryalahari- The crest of devotional poetry 303
  The Jnani and devotion 304
  The divine origin of the ‘Saundarylahari’ 314
  Why the Drama enacted by Nandhikesvara? 319
  Three great devotional Hymns 325
  The saundaryalahari- Its grandeur 330
  A divinely inspired poet- in two senses 331
  Commentaries on the Hymn 337
  Mother worship 341
  Devi in sacred literature 345
  The two ‘Laharis’ and their names 345
  A title with universal appeal 351
  Names of ambal: Not many used in the Hymn 353
  On ‘Anandalahari’ 357
  Appreciating beauty is its own reward 360
  What is beauty? 364
  Ambal: Beauty that is full, Love that is total 369
  The hymn itself a portrait of ambika 375
  ‘Anandalahari’ : Adhvitha and Saktha 376
  The Hymn to Sakthi starts with Siva 385
  Imparting life-force to Siva masculine and feminine names 395
  Acharya for both paths 400
  Panchakruthya and Kamesvari and Kamesvara 405
  Siva and Hara 415
  ‘Pundarikam’Namam’ 416
  Siva’s Spandhana or Vibration 419
  Hymn composed with an open mind 425
  Adhvaitha maya and sakthi in the Saiva and Saktha dortrines 430
  Jnania through Maya 440
  Sakthi and Lila in Adhvaitha 443
  How we must approach the Hymn 445
  Kundalini Yoga great caution needed 454
  Explaining the Hymn before a public assembly 462
  The Saktha system and science 465
  The first stanza: What it teaches 473
  Cosmic functions with the dust on Ambal’s feet 476
  Can we start with the feet? 478
  The dust on Ambal’s feet it does good here and hereafter 480
  Abhaya and granted by the hand 486
  Deity of the Hymn Hinted at 489
  Can kama ever be a blessing 492
  The power of Ambal’s sidelong glance it made kama a Triumphant Hero 499
  Kama’s conquest of Siva not mentioned 509
  Not Siva and Sakthi but Sivasakthi 511
  Portrait Of Ambal 513
  Ambika’s residence 524
  In the Kundalini Form 530
  Whatever path you follow… 531
  The srichakra and its greatness 536
  Yanthra, Thanthra, Capital city each without a separate name 541
  The incomparable beauty of Ambal 543
  Embodiment of time 548
  Bestowing the gift of eloquence importance of sound in the saktha system 548
  Curing illness 561
  ‘Good snake’, ‘Bad snake’ 568
  The importance of red the inner meaning of ‘Attraction’ 572
  The ‘Sahasranamam’ and the ‘Saundaryalahari’ 581
  From ‘Daso’ ham to ‘so ham’ 585
  Three arathis 595
  Why rudra is not mentioned sleep, Death and Thuriya Samadhi 597
  Devotees who are Adhvaithis Never Perish 602
  The glory of Ambal’s Chastity 606
  Ambal’s sport and Isvara and other deities 607
  The sport of protection and punishment 612
  Ambal: The medicine that gives life to Isa 614
  Ambal’s Thatanka 620
  Why Vishnu is left out 625
  The theft committed by Ambal 627
  Dedicating one’s all 637
  Siva-Sakthi: Life-body 642
  The mother who suckles all the Sesha-seshi concept 646
  ‘Sesha’; ‘Seshi’= Property; Owner of property 650
  Gist of th two stanzas 659
  Siva and sakthi in the Chakras 661
  Father and mother 663
  Siva and Sakthi in different states 671
  Chandra-Surya-Maulisvari 685
  The black that dispels darkness 691
  ‘Saundaryalahari’ 696
  The two half-moons-that changed places 713
  The eyebrows as bow- The eyes as bowstring 718
  The three eyes: The three Gunas 730
  Nethra and Kshethra 734
  Ambal’s eyes and poetry 739
  The eye: Abode of the nine rasas 745
  ‘Minalochana’ Hinted at 752
  ‘Mother, Bathe me too in your grace’ 756
  The nose-ornament and the finer points of Yoga 769
  The incomparable beauty of ambal’s lips 772
  The smile that ‘Sours’ Moonlight 774
  Thambula Prasada 779
  The praise that shames 786
  Creases in the throat the male white and the female red 794
  Beauty of hands 803
  Milk of Jnana 804
  The Tamil child 805
  The knees of a Pathivratha 807
  The Bhagvatpadha and the Bhagavatipadha 809
  The lotus that blooms in the mind-stone 814
  Surrendering at Ambal’s feet 616
  Even the lotus is no match 818
  Red has its glory 819
  The moon- A vessel for perfumes 821
  The Acharya cautions us… 822
  Ambika’s amazing pathivrathya 830
  Chief queen of the Parabrahmam 833
  The richly rewarding mother worship 839
  The auspicious conclusion 847
5 Mangalarathihi 861
  The Immortal Anjaneyaswamy 863

 

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Voice of God (Volume-6)

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Introduction

Location: Kalavai, a small town in the Vellore district of Tamil Nadu, India.
Date: February 13, 1907.
A young boy of thirteen is chosen to become the 68th Pitadhipathi of Sri Kanchi Kamakoti Pitam, in the illustrious parampara of Acharyas who adorned the Pitam established by Sri Adhi Sankara more than 2500 years ago.

That boy is none other then His Holiness Jagadguru Sri Chandrasekharendra Saraswathi Swamigal. To millions of devotees he was simply ‘Periyava’- the revered one or Maha-Periyava. ‘Periyava’ in Tamil means a great person. That term however has acquired a special meaning because it has come to refer to His Holiness. It is a term that at once conveys endearment, reverence and devotion. It would never be mentioned in a casual manner. Mahaswami and Paramacharya are his other well-known appellations.

The Paramacharya was the Pitadhipathi of the Mutt for 87 long years. During this period, Sri Kanchi Kamakoti Pitam acquired new strength as an institution that propogated Sri Adhi Sankara’s teachings. The devotion, fervour and intensity with which the Paramacharya practised what Adhi Sankara had preached, is unparalleled. He lived a Spartan life. Throughout his life, the main focus of his concern and activities was rejuvenating Vedha adhyayana, the Dharma Sasthras and the age old tradition which had suffered decline. ‘Vedha rakshanam’ was his very life breath and he referred to this in most of his public discourses and private conversations. His prodding regular support to Vedha Patasalas through the Vedhic scholars, holding regular sadhas which included discussions on arts and culture- these led to a renewed interest in Vedhic religion, Dharma sasthras and Sanskrit. His long tenure as Pitathipathi was the golden era of the Kanchi Camelot Pitam.

Paramacharya was a walking university. Scholars of all sects, not only from all over India but also from countries abroad came to him and deemed it a blessing and a privilege to go back enlightened after meeting him. His regular visitors ranged from the most ordinary village fold to the highest in the land. Presidents and Prime ordinary village folk to the highest in the land. Presidents and Prime Ministers, Kings and Queens, Highnesses and Excellencies came to spend a few moments with him and seek his blessings.

That the Paramacharya was an extraordinary phenomenon can be seen from this incident. When he was in his late eighties he left Kanchipuram and undertook a padha yathra through Karnataka, Maharashtra and Andhra. Before he returned to Kanchipuram he made all arrangements for the construction of an exquisite Nataraja temple at Satara (Uttara Chidambaram). The uniqueness about this temple is the fact that the states of Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, and Maharashtra came together to build the 5 doorways to the temple. The state of Kerala supplied the entire wood required for the temple. It was only his grace and moral influence that made this possible.

The Paramacharya’s catholicity of outlook was extraordinary. He was the Advaitha Acharaya. He was the authentic spokesman of Hindu religion and its Dharma Shastras and of Sanathana Dharma. He even believed that it was Vedhic religion that had prevailed all over the world in ancient times. But, just as he had high regard for the Acharyas of other philosophical doctrines like Ramanuja nnd Madhva and the Nayanmars of Saiva Siddhanta, he had great respect for Jesus and Mohamed Nabi, the prophet. He could be so considerate as to express the view that those who indulged in proselytisation did so out of their conviction that their religion alone could secure redemption.

February 13, 2006 marks the beginning of the 100th years of the Paramacharya’s Sanyasa Swikarana (entering the ascetic order) and Pitaarohana (becoming the head of the Sri Kanchi Kamokottipitam). Sri Kanchi Mahaswami Peetarohana Shatabdi Mahotsava Trust has been specially formed to celebrate this significant milestone in the spiritual history of India.

The main objective of the Trust is to spread the thoughts and the message of the Paramacharya across the world, not just to his devotees, but even to others who might never have had the opportunity to have his dharsan. With this objective in view the Trust has undertaken on priority the translation into English and other major Indian languages of his discourses in Tamil (upansayam). To begin with, we have chosen ‘Deivathin Kural’-Voice of God in Tamil. It is a collection of the Paramacharya’s discourses starting from 1932. These are seven volumes each of about 1000 pages. His talks cover a wide range of topics apart from all aspects of Vedhic dharma and Hindu religion which is the main focus. It is a veritable encyclopedia of Hindu religion and dharma to which people refer for authentic information on these aspects.

‘Deivathin Kural’ is a monumental work by Sri Ra Ganapathy and it occupies a special place among many books written about Paramacharya. Sri Ganapathy painstakingly collated all of Paramacharya’s talks, conversations, casual comments, answers to questions etc covering several aspects of our ancient religion, dharma and culture. Sri Ganapathy not only collected the material but also collated and organized under various subjects everything that the Paramacharya had spoken about a subject over many years at several places.

The purpose of the English translation is two fold. One is to reach Paramacharya’s thoughts and message to a wider audience. The second is to use the English translation as the basic text for translation into other Indian languages. The original in Tamil portrays in large measure the simplicity and clarity of thoughts and expressions and the unique story telling style of the Paramacharya. It has been our attempt to capture it in English. As readers will know this is not an easy task. In one of his talks, while explaining the need to protect the Vedhas in their original form, the Paramacharya himself has, in his characteristic style, referred to the limitations of any translation.

The Paramacharya’s observations are a warning to us and we are deeply conscious of our responsibility. Effort has been made to address the average reader through this work in simple language. Since the English version is to be the base from which translation into other Indian languages will be done, suitable diacritical markings have been used for Sanskrit and Tamil words. Wherever necessary the actual Sanskrit words and Slockas have been given with diacritical markings and the meanings are also given along with the words. This should make it more convenient for the reader than a separate glossary at the end.

It is usual to share one’s good and memorable experiences with others. When two devotees of the Paramacharya meet, it turns out to be an occasion for sharing of experiences. Entire train journeys could be spent talking only about him and his various qualities. He has indeed created a huge family, truly a Vasudaiva Kutumbhakam. It is the hope and wish of Sri Kanchi Mahaswami Peetarohana Shatabdi Mahotsaa Trust that readers will experience the Paramacharya through these pages, which in itself would be an elevating experience.

His talks do more than providing insight into Vedhic Dharma and Hindu religion. There is indeed hope that inspite of the declining moral values all around, dharma will prevail. It should also be clear that mere wishful thinking will not make that happen. All of us have a duty and responsibility towards making it happen. The many schemes which the Paramacharya introduced are simple and effective. If any thing, we have to revive many of his practical ideas and implement them.

The blessings of H.H. Sri Jayendra Saraswathi Swamigal and H.H. Sri Sanara Vijayendra Saraswathi Swamigal, the 69th and 70th Acharyas of Sri Kanchi Kamakoti Pitam have provided encouragement to this Trust to embark on a project of this magnitude. It is their Sankalpa that the Paramacharya’s message should reach every Indian wherever he may be. We are overwhelmed by the responsibility they have placed on us.

Millions of the Paramacharya’s devotees sincerely believe that He is alive even today and He is guiding us on the path of dharma. It is his spirit that acts as the beacon in these troubled times. It is through his grace that this work is being published.

 

Contents

 

  Srimukham i
  Gurusthuthi v
  Introduction ix
  Acknowledgements xiv
  Guidance to Pronounciation xvii
1. Mangalarambam 1
  A life blessed with sixteen is a great life 3
  Remedy for all obstacles 3
  The greatness of sixteen 6
  Shodasa Nama Slokas 7
  Sumukar 8
  How Ganapathi wit Human face became elephant-faced 9
  One who is of the form of joy 10
  One with the good mouth 10
  The greatness of the elephant’s mouth and its philosophy 11
  Ekadanthar: ‘One who will do his utmost to others’ 12
  One who is also a female 13
  Vigneswara Gayathri 13
  Kapilar: Vinayaka of tiruchengattankudi 14
  Vathapi Ganapathi: Some historical details 15
  The elephant- Faced and Agasthya 18
  Gajakarnakar 20
  Lambhodharar 23
  Vikatar 24
  Vikata Vinayakas in some holy places 26
  Vikata Chakra Vinayakar 28
  Vigna Rajar 28
  Noble purpose in creating obstacles too 29
  ‘Personal’ Experience 30
  Vinayakar; Double Pillaiyar 32
  The famous name 35
  The qualifying letter ‘Vi’ 36
  Vi-Nayakar in two meanings 36
  The names of Pillaiyar in Amaram 37
  Dhumakethu 38
  Ganadhyakshar 40
  Bhalachandrar 41
  Pillaiyar and the moon 43
  Gajananar 44
  The great qualities of the elephant 44
  Animals which have divine links 47
  One who has within himself all the beings 48
  The outline of the original 49
  The face and the mouth 50
  Vakrathundar 51
  Surpakarnar 52
  Herambar 53
  Elephant which is worshipped by lion 54
  The five-faced one with the lion as the vehicle 56
  Skandha Purvajar 56
  The greatness of being Murugan’s elder brother 57
  The role of the elder in the birth of Muruga 57
  The role of the elder in Murugan’s marriage 61
  The role of the elder in Murugan’s Sanyasam 62
  Murugan who has all the benefits of the Phalasruthi 63
  The greatness of the name of Skanda 66
  Let us start the day by remembering the elder brother 68
2 Guru 69
  Desikar who gives Upadesam 71
  The way and direction in life 71
  Purvoththaram: East- North 71
  The world ‘Dhich’ both as noun and verb 72
  Desam, Upadesam 73
  The meaning of ‘Upa’ 75
  The word ‘Desikar’ with two meanings 77
  Word that shows cordial relationship 77
  Higher than the mother and the father is the Guru 78
  Acharya Dharmam 79
  The greatness of the mother and the father 79
  The ‘cucumber mukthi’ of the Jnani 83
  The love and sacrifice of the guru 87
  No Jnanam without Guru’s Upadesam 89
  The great merits of the word ‘Desika’ 92
  Paramacharyar 94
  Devi as Desika 95
3 Adhvaitham 99
  The practice of Adhvaitham 101
  The gist of religious philosophies 101
  Adhvaitham which is so different from others 102
  What appears simple is so difficult 104
  Moksham through iswara’s grace (Anugraham) 106
  Effort has to be continued even if the goal is delayed 109
  Sadhana Chathushtayam 111
  The path laid down by Acharya on the lines of Vedhas 111
  Karma and Bhakthi- Preliminary to Jnana 114
  Sraddha (Faith) is necessary 115
  The qualification for spiritual practice 118
  The highest Sadhana is only for the Sanyasi 121
  Why should what is appropriate to a Sanyasi be prescribed for every one? 126
  Two different paths for two different types of people 127
  The reason why it is being told to all 131
  About Bhakthiyogam 134
  Basic knowledge of Adhvaitha for all 135
  Discrimination of the permanent and the ephemeral 139
  Vairagyam: (Distaste for worldly desires) 146
  Six kinds of wealth 159
  Samam- Dhamam 160
  What is Samam? 160
  Uparathi 171
  Thithikshai 173
  Sraddha 182
  Samadhanam 194
  Who is entitled to formally learn Upanishad? 202
  Strictness in Samadhanam 204
  Paramathma’s six and Jivathma’s six 205
  Mumukkshuthvam 206
  Why is the ultimate state described only as ‘Release’? 207
  Mumukshu: As defined by Acharya 210
  The lower level, Middle level mumukshu 214
  Guru’s prasad 216
  Acharya and ancient texts on Mumukshu 217
  Four kinds of spiritual army 224
  Before the three parts of the third stage 224
  Bhakthi: Its place in Jnana Marga 225
  What is Bhakthi? 227
  What is love? 227
  Anthahkaranam (Inner sense organs) and the heart 228
  Ahankaram and love 231
  What is the object of the love of a spiritual aspirant? (Athma Sadhaka) 233
  Bhakthi of the Nirguna and Saguna forms 235
  A pleasing love which is full of life 237
  For the removal of haughtiness also 239
  Ahankaram in Sadhana: Two stages 240
  Bhakthi and Hrudhayam 243
  The nadis of the Hrudhayam; the life of a Jnani subsiding and the life of others departing 246
  Death during Uththarayanam- The correct meaning 255
  Two differing fruits of Karma Yogam 256
  Nadi going from the ‘Hrudhayam’ To the head- wrongly understood 257
  The Bhakthi of Jnana Marga is greater than that of Bhakthi Marga 262
  Bhakthi itself is Jnana as shown by Krishna 266
  Third stage 269
  Reununciation 269
  Serial names in Vishnu Sahasranamam 277
  Sanyasakruth Samo 278
  Sravana etc. As the injunction of the Vedhas 279
  Sravanam and Susrusha (service to guru) 280
  Can a guru who has had anubhuthi (spiritual experience) be found? 283
  To be after a single target 283
  The characteristics of sravana, Manana and Nidhidhyasana 285
  The state before Siddhi 286
  Mananam which transcends the little intelligence: Nidhidhyasanam which transcends emotions 287
  For the two differing attitudes (Bhavana) to go 289
  The greatness of Mananam-Nidhidhyasanam 291
  Worm becoming a wasp; To make a worm a wasp 292
  What needs to be done immediately 297
4 Saundaryalahari 299
  The Acharya- A divine incarnation 301
  The saundaryalahari- The crest of devotional poetry 303
  The Jnani and devotion 304
  The divine origin of the ‘Saundarylahari’ 314
  Why the Drama enacted by Nandhikesvara? 319
  Three great devotional Hymns 325
  The saundaryalahari- Its grandeur 330
  A divinely inspired poet- in two senses 331
  Commentaries on the Hymn 337
  Mother worship 341
  Devi in sacred literature 345
  The two ‘Laharis’ and their names 345
  A title with universal appeal 351
  Names of ambal: Not many used in the Hymn 353
  On ‘Anandalahari’ 357
  Appreciating beauty is its own reward 360
  What is beauty? 364
  Ambal: Beauty that is full, Love that is total 369
  The hymn itself a portrait of ambika 375
  ‘Anandalahari’ : Adhvitha and Saktha 376
  The Hymn to Sakthi starts with Siva 385
  Imparting life-force to Siva masculine and feminine names 395
  Acharya for both paths 400
  Panchakruthya and Kamesvari and Kamesvara 405
  Siva and Hara 415
  ‘Pundarikam’Namam’ 416
  Siva’s Spandhana or Vibration 419
  Hymn composed with an open mind 425
  Adhvaitha maya and sakthi in the Saiva and Saktha dortrines 430
  Jnania through Maya 440
  Sakthi and Lila in Adhvaitha 443
  How we must approach the Hymn 445
  Kundalini Yoga great caution needed 454
  Explaining the Hymn before a public assembly 462
  The Saktha system and science 465
  The first stanza: What it teaches 473
  Cosmic functions with the dust on Ambal’s feet 476
  Can we start with the feet? 478
  The dust on Ambal’s feet it does good here and hereafter 480
  Abhaya and granted by the hand 486
  Deity of the Hymn Hinted at 489
  Can kama ever be a blessing 492
  The power of Ambal’s sidelong glance it made kama a Triumphant Hero 499
  Kama’s conquest of Siva not mentioned 509
  Not Siva and Sakthi but Sivasakthi 511
  Portrait Of Ambal 513
  Ambika’s residence 524
  In the Kundalini Form 530
  Whatever path you follow… 531
  The srichakra and its greatness 536
  Yanthra, Thanthra, Capital city each without a separate name 541
  The incomparable beauty of Ambal 543
  Embodiment of time 548
  Bestowing the gift of eloquence importance of sound in the saktha system 548
  Curing illness 561
  ‘Good snake’, ‘Bad snake’ 568
  The importance of red the inner meaning of ‘Attraction’ 572
  The ‘Sahasranamam’ and the ‘Saundaryalahari’ 581
  From ‘Daso’ ham to ‘so ham’ 585
  Three arathis 595
  Why rudra is not mentioned sleep, Death and Thuriya Samadhi 597
  Devotees who are Adhvaithis Never Perish 602
  The glory of Ambal’s Chastity 606
  Ambal’s sport and Isvara and other deities 607
  The sport of protection and punishment 612
  Ambal: The medicine that gives life to Isa 614
  Ambal’s Thatanka 620
  Why Vishnu is left out 625
  The theft committed by Ambal 627
  Dedicating one’s all 637
  Siva-Sakthi: Life-body 642
  The mother who suckles all the Sesha-seshi concept 646
  ‘Sesha’; ‘Seshi’= Property; Owner of property 650
  Gist of th two stanzas 659
  Siva and sakthi in the Chakras 661
  Father and mother 663
  Siva and Sakthi in different states 671
  Chandra-Surya-Maulisvari 685
  The black that dispels darkness 691
  ‘Saundaryalahari’ 696
  The two half-moons-that changed places 713
  The eyebrows as bow- The eyes as bowstring 718
  The three eyes: The three Gunas 730
  Nethra and Kshethra 734
  Ambal’s eyes and poetry 739
  The eye: Abode of the nine rasas 745
  ‘Minalochana’ Hinted at 752
  ‘Mother, Bathe me too in your grace’ 756
  The nose-ornament and the finer points of Yoga 769
  The incomparable beauty of ambal’s lips 772
  The smile that ‘Sours’ Moonlight 774
  Thambula Prasada 779
  The praise that shames 786
  Creases in the throat the male white and the female red 794
  Beauty of hands 803
  Milk of Jnana 804
  The Tamil child 805
  The knees of a Pathivratha 807
  The Bhagvatpadha and the Bhagavatipadha 809
  The lotus that blooms in the mind-stone 814
  Surrendering at Ambal’s feet 616
  Even the lotus is no match 818
  Red has its glory 819
  The moon- A vessel for perfumes 821
  The Acharya cautions us… 822
  Ambika’s amazing pathivrathya 830
  Chief queen of the Parabrahmam 833
  The richly rewarding mother worship 839
  The auspicious conclusion 847
5 Mangalarathihi 861
  The Immortal Anjaneyaswamy 863

 

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