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The Tirumandiram (Set of 5 Volumes) - Text, Transliteration, Translation and Detailed Commentary

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Volumes I and II   About the Book   The Tirumandiram, by Siddha Tirumular is a sacred encyclopedia of philosophical and spiritual wisdom rendered in verse form. It is one of India's greatest texts, a spiritual treasure-trove, a Sastra containing astonishing insight. It is a seminal work and is the first treatise in Tamil that deals with different aspects of Yoga, Tantra and Saiva Siddhantha.   "The poems of Tiru...

Volumes I and II

 

About the Book

 

The Tirumandiram, by Siddha Tirumular is a sacred encyclopedia of philosophical and spiritual wisdom rendered in verse form. It is one of India's greatest texts, a spiritual treasure-trove, a Sastra containing astonishing insight. It is a seminal work and is the first treatise in Tamil that deals with different aspects of Yoga, Tantra and Saiva Siddhantha.

 

"The poems of Tirumular abound in technical terms conveying mystical experience. The symbolic, twilight language of the Siddhas has the advantage of precision, concentration, secrecy, mystery and esoteric significance in that the symbols, at the hands of the Siddhas become a form of artistic expression of the inexpressible. In short, the twilight language of the Siddhas is, in essence, profoundly mystical in nature and contains a "numinous aura" and existential revelations for the man who deciphers their message. The essential difficulty is that to understand the twilight language requires a total hermeneutic of reading, an awareness, in fact, of the total religious and philosophical structures that infuse it. It also requires one to enter deep states of meditation wherein the verse serves as a key that reveals a higher meaning to the initiate." (T.N. Ganapathy)

 

It took five years and a team of scholars to translate each of the 3000 verses and to write extensive commentaries about them, in nine volumes. The tenth volume contains presentations from two philosophical schools of Saiva Siddhanta and a glossary, select bibliography and index.

 

Foreword

 

This monumental publication and all of the research conducted by the Yoga Siddha Research Center's team of scholars and yogins since the year 2000 has been sponsored by Babajis Kriya Yoga Order of Acharyas, a registered educational charity in Canada and the USA, with sister organizations registered in Bangalore India and Sri Lanka. In concert with Babaji' s Kriya Yoga and Publications, Inc. of Canada, the Order is pleased to make this new translation and commentary available to the English speaking world.

 

There is some history behind this publication. The Tirumandiram is one of the first texts to emerge in the West from the gold mine of ancient Tamil literature, which until recently has been bypassed by scholars outside of south India. While the Sanskrit literature has been mined and studied by Western scholars for more than 200 years, the ancient Tamil language literature has been largely ignored. However, the late Swami Subramaniam, founder of the Saiva Siddhantha Church in Hawaii, USA, commissioned the late Dr. B. Natarajan to translate the Tirumandiram in the late 1980 'so Unfortunately, only the first of the nine tantras was published by the Saiva Siddhantha Church, prior to the death of the translator, Dr. B. Natarajan, in 1982. While it contained no verse by verse commentary, it did include some notes. Having received from Dr. Natarajan in person a copy. of this first tantra in 1980, and dismayed by the fact that the rest had not been published, I, as the founder of Babaji's Kriya Yoga and Publication, repeatedly urged Dr. Natarajan's heirs, from 1986 onwards, to allow me to publish the entire manuscript. Unknown to me, Dr. N. Mahalingam, the noted industrialist, philanthropist and scholar of Sangam literature, finally persuaded the heirs to do the same, and financed the publication of Dr. Natarajan's manuscript in a single volume published by the Ramakrishna Mission in Chennai, India in 1992. Seeing that this edition lacked the presentation which would make it appealing and useful to the vast majority of Western readers, Babaji's Kriya Yoga and Publications, Inc. received permission to publish it from the Ramakrishna Mission in September 2002. The new edition which we published in 1993 was a three volume international edition entitled the Thirumandiram: A Classic of Yoga and Tantra. This edition contained special introductory chapters, glossary and index which made it much more accessible to the readers in the West in particular. Since then, this publication has gone through five printings, and as a result, the Tirumandiram has become known to lovers of Yoga all over the world.

 

However, the need for a more accurate translation became apparent as Tamil speaking specialists pointed out that Dr. B. Natarajan had too often sacrificed precision for poetic grace. Furthermore, he neglected to translate many of the technical terms, and consequently, the average reader, with little or no background in the philosophical and rich cultural, esoteric and religious tapestry of the Tirumandiram, was often unable to grasp the significance of many of the verses. Finally, it became apparent that the non-specialist would need a running commentary along with translation, in order to easily understand the meaning and significance of most of the verses.

 

This present work fulfills this need and several others, which the previous translation did not. It has the advantage of being based on the Tiruppanandal Kaci-t-tirumadam edition. We have followed the numbering of verses of this edition only. It also has the advant- age of making use of the annotated and critical edition of the Tirumandiram written by Dr. S. Annamalai in 1999 for many critical points. To produce that critical edition, Dr. Annamalai examined thirteen different manuscripts of the Tirumandiram in their original Tamil language. From this examination, he was able to identify interpolations and other errors in several of the manuscripts.

 

This present edition also benefits from the experience and knowledge gained by the Yoga Siddha Research project's team of scholars, lead by Dr. T.N. Ganapathy. Since 2000, they have produced six volumes of translation and commentary on the works of the eighteen Yoga Siddhas. Tirumular, the author of the Tirumandiram, is one of these eighteen Siddhas, or supreme masters of Yoga, and like them, uses their twilight language, or sandhya bhasa, extensively to deliberately obscure the meaning of his verses, as well as many other of their literary forms and references. These scholars' unique experience and knowledge has. enabled them to produce what has never been done before: a precise English translation with verse by verse commentary of the entire Tirumandiram in nine volumes, plus a tenth volume, which serves as an index.

 

As a final step in preparing for the present publication, two years ago, we published The Yoga of Tirumular: Essays on the Tirumandiram, by Dr. T.N. Ganapathy and Dr. KR Arumugam. It develops many important themes of the Tirumandiram and serves as both an excellent introduction and companion resource for both the specialist and the non-specialist reader.

 

This edition of the Tirumandiram, because of its size, in well over 3,000 pages, has been a great challenge to publish. It was clear that with the exception of a few research libraries, very few individuals would want such a mammoth work on their book shelves, even if they could afford its high cost. Modern technology, in the form of digital storage on a DVD has provided a solution that is both convenient and affordable for the vast majority of potential readers. Also, it enables us to honor our commitment to "Green Yoga." In early 2 0 0 8, as we neared completion of this work, we therefore made a strategic decision to print only a limited number of copies in a paper edition, which will be made available to research libraries, and to make this new publication accessible to everyone who wants it, reproduced and stored in a digital form, on DVDs.

 

We are grateful, however, to Dr. N. Mahalingam who at the end of July 2009 offered to pay for the cost of printing 2,000 copies of the ten volumes in a hard bound set, and to distribute many of these to various institutions on a charitable basis. We concluded an agreement to co-publish the same, while at the same time going ahead with our plans for printing a single volume English translation of the 3,047 verses with a DVD containing all ten volumes inserted into its rear jacket cover.

 

It has also been a challenge to produce a translation that would not take sides in the important philosophical debate between Saiva Siddhantins or realistic pluralists, and those who see the Tirumandiram as an expression of the highest mystical states of consciousness accessible to the Yogin, or monistic theism. The views of the two sides are reproduced in the special introductory chapter. The translation and commentary itself has been kept neutral, with an aim of making the original terminology as clear and accessible as possible.

 

As the world wide interest in authentic Yoga grows, the importance and reputation of the Tirumandiram is bound to excel. May all lovers of truth and the Sanatana Dharma, in particular, find their path illuminated by the poetry and wisdom of Tirumular.

 

Preface

 

The main aim and purpose of publishing the content of the Tirumandiram, in nine volumes with the Tamil verses, their transliteration, their translation and commentary in English along with a separate volume (vo1.10) for glossary and index, is to allow the majority of Anglophones in our country and in other countries the opportunity to study this Tamil classic in depth. The Tamil Saiva and Siddha traditions have been largely ignored by both Indian and foreign scholars and deserve recognition for their great contributions to the understanding of the science of Yoga, spirituality and immortality. Although previously translated into English by B. Natarajan, and published by Ramakrishna Mission, Chennai, India and later by Sri. M. Govindan, the Tirumandiram has not previously had either verse transliteration or systematic commentary. One could only find a few sporadic translations and commentaries on verses of the Tirumandiram by J. M. Nallasami Pillai in the Siddhanta Dipikajournals published between 1897 and 1914, (now brought out in fourteen volumes by the Asian Educational Services, New Delhi). The foremost difficulty in carrying out this great enterprise was in finding competent translators among the Tamil-speaking scholars on this great subject. The aim of bringing out this series of nine volumes was so demanding that it made me stagger at times-myself being seventy-eight years young -and also made me wonder whether I was attempting the impossible. a

 

My concern about the impossibility of bringing out this series with commentary, moreover, grew intense due to two factors. First, certain Saivites object against writing a commentary, especially in English, on the sacred text of the Tirumandiram, the only tiru-murai (sacred Tamil Saiva scripture) that is both a cattiram (stotra, or philosophical treatise) and a tottiram (stotra, or devotional literary product) in the Tamil Saiva tradition. This traditionalist view gains its support in one of the verses by Tirumular himself.

 

Oh! Fools are they who try to describe the indescribable How can one explain the One that is boundless?"

 

One can counter this objection against rendering a translation and commentary by saying that one need not commend this spirit, however well intended it might be. Furthermore, there is also a favourable statement in the Tirumandiram itself.

 

The Lord with the matted locks stood blemishless to those whose mind is like a waveless sea.

 

How can the boundless One be bound in translations and commentaries? Tirumular provides the answer: Only those with a clear mind, that is, with a waveless mind, like the calm deep sea, can comprehend it. Though the translators and commentators claim no such mind, they seek and obtain protection in the words of Tirumular.

 

The second factor concerns a basic requirement of writing a commentary as found in Nannul, which I casually stumbled on. The Nannul, a Tamil work on grammar composed by the Jain ascetic Pavanandi of Kancheepuram, several centuries back, states that the work of a bhasya or commentary depends on fourteen characteristics, viz., pure text, purport, construction, word- meaning, paraphrasing, citing parallel passages, questioning, answering queries, adding fresh explanatory matter, free exposition, the relevancy of the sutras (aphorisms), comprising chapters or sections, giving the meaning boldly in doubtful cases, the result of this and quoting authority."

 

This second factor is being addressed by stating that this work (the present nine volumes) is not a bhasya in the strict sense of the term featuring the fourteen traditional characteristics, but only a general commentary in the ordinary sense of the term, viz., consisting of explanatory notes. The commentaries provided in these volumes are linguistic expressions of the mystical experiences of Tirumular, as expressed in the Tirumandiram. They claim only to provide the clues and guidelines for understanding the richness of the spiritual mystical experiences of the saint. It is said that those who read and interpret the scriptures and get "knowledge" through them are like bees hovering round the ripe jack-fruit. The bees may hum at the fragrance of the jack-fruit, but can never break into the kernel and have the taste of it. So it may be the case with the scholars who have commented on the Tirumandiram. The commentaries are meant to be guides, pointing to the goal, to the essence, but themselves are unrealized, mere descriptions of truth. In bringing out the the entire Tamil text in translation, saint Cekkilars words come before me. Cekkilar says:

 

Contents

 

 

Volume I

 

 

Publisher's Foreword

XV

 

General Preface

XX

 

Contributors

LXXX

 

Guide to Pronunciation in Tamil

LXXXIX

 

Introduction to Tandiram One

1

 

Invocation of Lord Vinayaka

11

 

Prologue (9 Sections)

15

1.

In Praise of God

17

2.

The Greatness of the Vedas

72

3.

The Greatness of the Agamas

80

4.

The Guru Tradition

94

5.

The History of Tirumular

101

6.

Humility in Assembly

127

7.

Number and Import of the Tirumandiram Hymns

131

8.

Spiritual Lineage

133

9.

The Trinity and the Relationship

136

 

Tandiram One (24 Sections)

 

1.

Instructions on the Essence

147

2.

Transitoriness of the Body

189

3.

Transitoriness of Wealth

214


4.

Impermanence of Youth

223

5.

Impermanence of Live

233

6.

Non-killing

243

7.

Meat-Eating, Forbidden

246

8.

On the Evil of Adulterous Life

248

9.

The Dishonourable Public Women

252

10.

Poverty

257

1l.

Efficacy of the Propitiation of Fire

263

12.

Way of the Brahmins

276

13.

A Code for Governance

295

14.

In Praise of Rain

307

15.

In Praise of Giving

310

16.

In Praise of the Righteous

312

17.

Path of the Unrighteous

321

18.

By Love Possessed

331

19.

Siva Knows the Ones that Love

342

20.

Learning

352

2l.

Fulfilling Inquiry

363

22.

State of Being Unlearned

374

23.

In the Midst of Grace

385

24.

Abstention From Drink

391-406

 

Volume II

 

 

Introduction

411

 

Tandiram Two (25 Sections)

 

1.

Agattiyam

415

2.

Eight Heroic Deeds of the Lord

419

3.

Linga - Purana

431

4.

Daksa ' s Sacrifice

438

5.

The Deluge

449

6.

Gift of a Discus

455

7.

Skeleton and Skull

460

8.

Search for the Crown and the Feet

462

9.

Creation

474

10.

Sustenance

505

11.

Dissolution

514

12.

Obscuration

525

13.

Bestowing Grace

535

14.

Creation (Microcosmic)

545

15.

Three Categories of Souls

586

16.

The Worthy Ones

599

17.

The Unworthy Ones

604

18.

Holy Waters

608

19.

Desecration of the Holy Temple

615

20.

Manifestation of Downward Face

621

21.

Reproach of Siva

628

22.

Reproach of Guru

632

23.

Reproach of the Devotees of Lord Siva

639

24.

Forbearance

641

25.

Seeking the Holy Company

645-650

 

Volumes III and IV

 

Contents

 

 

Volume III

 

 

Introduction

659

 

Tandiram Three (21 Sections)

 

1.

Astanga Yoga (Eight-limbed yoga)

661

2.

Yama (Abstentions)

666

3.

Niyama (Observances)

669

4.

Asanas (Postures)

672

5.

Pranayama (Regulated Breath)

678

6.

Pratyahara (Withdrawal of the Senses)

695

7.

Dharana (Concentration)

707

8.

Dhyana (Meditation)

718

9.

Samadhi (Intense Contemplation)

740

10.

Benefits of the Eight-Limbed Yoga

756

11.

Eight Great Siddhis

765

12.

State of Kalas

840

13.

The Art of Keeping the Body Intact

855

14.

The Wheel of Time

877

15.

Measurement of the Life Span

912

16.

Daily Pranic Rhythms

937

17.

Hostile Days

945

18.

Kechari –Yoga

948

19.

Pariyanga – Yoga

980

20.

Amuri Dharanai

1004

21.

Candra-Yoga

1012-1050

 

Volume IV

 

 

Introduction

1055

 

Tandiram Four (13 Sections)

 

1.

The Silently Articulated

1057

2.

The Cakra of Tiruvambalam

1087

3.

Archana

1173

4.

The Nine Sacrificial pits

1184

5.

Various Forms of Sakthi - The Tirupurai cakra

1213

6.

The Bairavi Mandiram

1239

7.

Absolute sakti

1281

8.

The Support and the Supported

1305

9.

Yeroli Cakra

1384

10.

The Cakra of Bhairava

1412

11.

The Cakra of Sarnbhavi Mandala

1418

12.

The Cakra of Bhuvanapati

1427

13.

Navakkari Cakra

1437-1512

 

Volumes V and VI

 

Contents

 

 

Volume V

 

 

Introduction

1521

 

Tandiram Five (20 Sections)

 

1.

Pure Saivism

1523

2.

Impure Saivism

1531

3.

The Saivism that Helps to Attain Liberation

1538

4.

Extreme Pure Saivism

1554

5.

The Path of Service

1561

6.

Ritualistic Worship

1574

7.

Yoga

1583

8.

Wisdom or Self-Realization

1594

9.

The Path of Wisdom or Self-Realization

1606

10.

The Path of Friend

1618

11.

The Path of Son

1626

12.

The Path of Servant

1634

13.

Reaching the World of the Lord

1640

14.

Proximity to the Lord

1643

15.

Attaining the Form of the Lord

1644

16.

Mergence with the Lord

1646

17.

The Descent of Grace

1649

18.

Condemning the External Faiths

1667

19.

Misconduct

1688

20.

Internal Faith

1695 -1710

 

Volume VI

 

 

Introduction

 

 

Tandiram Six (14 Sections)

 

1.

The Vision of Siva as Guru

1719

2.

The Merit or Grace of Guru's Feet

1736

3.

The Subject, The Object and Knowledge

1751

4.

Renunciation

1761

5.

Penance

1772

6.

Abuse of Tapas

1780

7.

Attainment of Jnana is due to Divine Grace

1793

8.

Disguised Vanity or Hypocrisy (Sanctimony)

1802

9.

The Robes of Penance

1808

10.

The Sacred Ashes

1812

11.

The Robes of Jnana

1815

12.

The Robes of Siva

1823

13.

One who is Immature or Unfit

1828

14.

One who is Mature or Fit

1839 - 1851

 

Volumes VII and VIII

 

Contents

 

 

Volume VII

 

 

Introduction

1861

 

Tandiram Seven (38 Sections)

 

1.

The Six Adharas

1866

2.

The Cosmos as the Symbol of God

1878

3.

The Body as the Linga

1895

4.

Sadasiva Lingam

1901

5.

The Soul as Linga

1926

6.

The Linga of Gnosis

1938

7.

Sivalingam

1950

8.

The Sacred Tradition

1956

9.

Bestowal of Grace

1972

10.

The Glow of Grace

1995

11.

Worship of Siva

2006

12.

Worship of the Preceptor

2033

13.

Worship of the Spiritual Servants

2045

14.

The Greatness of the Spiritual Servants

2057

15.

The Code of Feeding the Servants

2073

16.

Code of Receiving Alms

2076

17.

Variations in Mudra Gesture or Hand Pose

2083

18.

Accomplished Samadhi in the Cave of the Heart

2094

19.

Rituals of Samadhi

2102


20.

The Origin of the Bindu

2114

2l.

The conquest of Bindu and the device of

 

 

controlling the Life Breath at the time of Enjoyment

2128

22.

The States of the Sun Macrocosmic

 

 

Sun - The Sun of the Universe

2168

23.

The Sun of the World or The Microcosmic

 

 

Sun - the Sun of the Body

2179

24.

The State of the Sun in the Mind

2182

25.

The Sun of Gnosis

2187

26.

The Sun of Siva

2195

27.

The Character of the Soul

2199

28.

The Individual Soul

2202

29.

The Cultivated Soul

2206

30.

The Soul that is Bound

2211

3l.

The Enlightened One

2214

32.

The Effort required to control the Five Senses

2221

33.

The Method of Controlling the Five Sense Organs

2230

34.

The Path of the Unholy Guru

2244

35.

The Noble Guru

2250

36.

The Unethical Conduct

2269

37.

Compassion for the Soul's State of Misery

2286

38.

The Salutary Guidance

2304

 

Volume VIII

 

 

Introduction

2327

 

Tandiram Eight (43 Sections)

 

1.

Five-fold Differences of the Body

2351

2.

Relinquishment of the Body

2376

3.

Different States of Experience of

 

 

the soul-Lower State of Experience

2380

4.

Middle Waking State

2415

5.

The Paths for Liberation

2437

6.

Pure Waking State and Other States

2444

7.

Triple States of the Soul

2493

8.

The Supreme State

2543

9.

Devoid of Triple Gunas

2573

10.

Different World Systems

2575

11.

Even the Eleventh Kala is to be seen as an

 

 

Avastha "state"

2578

12.

Mingling and Departing

2582

13.

The State Free From Impurity

2585

14.

The Dawn of Spiritual Knowledge

2640

15.

The Six Ends

2656

16.

The Non-Difference of Pati, Pasu and Pasa

2698

17.

Exposition of Realizing the Feet and the Head

2720

18.

The Three Defects

2732

19.

The Three Words

2735

20.

The Three-fold Paras

2743

21.

The Nature of the Supreme Lord Siva

2750

22.

Three-fold Turiyas

2764

23.

Three-fold Muktis

2772

24.

Three-fold Svarupas (Real Nature)

2777

25.

Triple Instruments

2785

26.

Three Voids and Tat Tvam Asi

2789

27.

Three Illusions

2796

28.

The Adjuncts of Jiva and Para

2804

29.

The State of Tranquility

2809

30.

Avoidance of Out-Speaking

2816

31.

The State of the Soul within Triple Gunas

 

 

in the Sphere of the Eight-Petalled Lotus

2831

32.

Ninefold States and Ninefold Presiding Deities

2842

33.

The Pure and the Impure

2853

34.

Disdain of Liberation

2865

35.

Three Types of Implied Meaning

2874

36.

The Great Statement - Tat Tvam Asi

2883

37.

The Morsel of Cosmos

2902

38.

Truthfulness

2911

39.

The Performance of a Jnani

2926

40.

Curbing the Desire

2930

41.

The Significance of Devotion

2940

42.

The Attainment of Eternal Bliss

2950

43.

Inquiry

2953 - 2966

 

Volumes IX and X

 

Contents

 

 

Volume XI

 

 

Introduction

2977

 

Tandiram Nine (23 Sections)

 

1.

The Vision of the Monastery of the Guru

2981

2.

The Vision of the Jnana Guru who is the Embodiment of Wisdom

2994

3.

Pranava-Samadhi

3018

4.

Light

3025

5.

The Pancaksara Mantra-Gross

3045

6.

The Pancaksara Mantra-Subtle

3058

7.

The Pancaksara Mantra-Super Subtle

3068

8.

The Vision of the Sacred Dance of Siva

3073

9.

The Attainment of Space Within

3156

10.

 The Dawn of Wisdom

3166

11.

Sat-Cit-Ananda

3176

12.

The Dawn of the Real Nature of Sivam

3190

13.

Karma (ul)

3202

14.

The Vision of Siva

3208

15.

The Vision of the Essential Nature of Siva

3211

16.

Gradations of Liberation, Release from Karma

3220

17.

The Conversation About the Void

3222

18.

The Silent State of Samadhi

3343

19.

The Greatness of the Unlimited

3361

20.

The Greatness of the Realized Ones

3364

21.

Panegyric (Laudation/Tribute)

3389

22.

The All-Pervasive One

3431

23.

Benediction

3450

 

Volume X

 

1.

Appendix One

 

 

Debate within Saiva Siddhanta Regarding The Tirumandiram

 

1.

Monism and Pluralism in Saiva Siddhanta

3457

2.

There Can Be Only one Final Conclusion in Saiva Siddhanta

3514

2.

Glossary - T.N. Ganapathy

3637

3.

Select Bibliography - T.N. Ganapathy

3717

4.

Index - Ramesh Babu

3725

5.

The thirty-six principles of existence to Saiva Tandiram

3832

 

Courtesy: George Feuerstein

 

 

(Appendix Two)

 

       

 

Sample Pages

Volumes I and II



Volumes III and IV



Volumes V and VI



Volumes VII and VIII



Volumes IX and X


Item Code: NAK531 Author: T.N. Ganapathy Cover: Hardcover Edition: 2010 Publisher: Babaji’s Kriya Yoga Trust ISBN: 9781895383614 Language: Tamil Text with Transliteration and English Translation Size: 8.5 inch x 5.5 inch Pages: 3832 Other Details: Weight of the Book: 4.9 kg
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Thank you for having books on such rare topics as Samudrika Vidya, keep up the good work of finding these treasures and making them available.
Tulsi, USA
Received awesome customer service from Raje. Thank You very much.
Victor, USA
Just wanted to let you know the books arrived on Friday February 22nd. I could not believe how quickly my order arrived, 4 days from India. Wow! Seeing the post mark, touching and smelling the books made me long for your country. Reminded me it is time to visit again. Thank you again.
Patricia, Canada
Thank you for beautiful, devotional pieces.
Ms. Shantida, USA
Received doll safely and gift pack was a pleasant surprise. Keep up the good job.
Vidya, India
Thank you very much. Such a beautiful selection! I am very pleased with my chosen piece. I love just looking at the picture. Praise Mother Kali! I'm excited to see it in person
Michael, USA
Hello! I just wanted to say that I received my statues of Krishna and Shiva Nataraja today, which I have been eagerly awaiting, and they are FANTASTIC! Thank you so much, I am so happy with them and the service you have provided. I am sure I will place more orders in the future!
Nick, USA