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|| Thiru AdhyayanOthsavam of 1999 ||
As Pramaathi ThiruadhyanOthsavam is approaching , adiyEn wondered as to what contribution adiyEn can make for this year's celebration of Pahal Patthu,Iraa Patthu , Sri Vaikunta EkAdasi and NammAzhwAr Moksham celebrations.
It has been my bhAgyam in previous years to post a few articles on Sri Ranganatha Vaibhavam. These postings on Lord RanganAthan of Srirangam and PomonA.
The 1999 adhyayanOthsavam is a prelude to the much anticipated SamprOkshaNai in the year 2000. Sri Thirukkudanthai Sampath Rengarajan is pouring his heart out and writing bhakthi laden krithis on Sri RanganAthan and is getitng started to share with us his deep anubhavam of the uthsavams at Srirangam. AdiyEn will join with him and share with you all a special tribute to the Lord of Srirangam that has taken the shape of an audio casette dealing with the Sri Sookthis of Swamy Desikan , KonEri Appan Iyengar and PiLLai PerumAL Iyengar ( Azhagiya MaNavALa Daasar ). This will be complimentary to the AchArya RaamAnujA Interactive Multimedia CD ROM that will be distributed to BhakthAs during the festivities. The production of the copies should be completed by the middle of this month to facilitate distribution to Sri Ranganaatha BhakthAs , who have supported this project .
The origin of this 90 minute audio tape owes its origin to the special invited presentation at the Madras Music Academy some ten years ago. The invitation was for my sister kaimkarya Sri VidvAmsini Srimathi Veeraraghavan to give lecture demos on Tamizh paasurams of AchAryALs on Sri RanganaathA with special emphasis on Swamy Desikan's Prabhandhams and sthOthrams as well as 108 divya desa anthAdhi of PiLLai PerumAL Iyengar , the direct disciple of Parasara Bhattar. I added some English commentaries to these paasurams sung in many beautiful RaagAs by my sister and her sishyais.
AdiyEn will share with you nest the contents of this special tape assembled for this year's Thiru AdhyayanOthsavam celebrations. AdiyEn will entrust this tape with Sri Rengarajan for any appropriate use to help with the ongoing efforts to raise funds to complete the construction of Sri RanganAthA temple at Pomona , NY and for us all to assemble together to receive the blessings of the dhivya Dampathis during their ThirukkOil SamprOkshaNam in the first year of the next millenium.
AdiyEn will start with the summary of the first side of this tape dedicated to AchAryALs and the dhivya Dampathis of Srirangam and other dhivya desams.
First 45 minutes of the tape:
***The tape begins with a salutation to
the uniqueness of ArchAvathAram among the five forms of Sriman NaarAyaNA (Para,
VyUhA, Vibhava, AntharyAmi and ArchA). The benefits of ArchA worship by AzhwArs
and AchAryAs are next covered.
The special four benefits arising from ArchA worship are explained as (1) Ruchi Jaathakthvam or the kindling of the spiritual fire in the mind (2) SubhAsrayathvam or the attainment of inner peace and tranquility through darsana soubhAgyam of the beautiful ArchA Moorthy (3) Akshaya Loka CharaNyathvam or the development of the affection for the Dhivya dampathis in ArchA form that raises the fire of Bhakthi further and Bhootha dayaa and (4) anubhAvyathvam or the enhanced state of spiritual experience that stabilizes one's dhyAnam and dhArNam preparing one to attain a SadAchAryan to perform Prapatthi and qualify for MokshAnugraham. The fifteen aspects of the deep anubhavam Of ThirppANa AzhwAr of the archaa Moorthy of Sri RanganaathA is described,which can be accessed in the Dhivya Prabhandam section.
*** The excerpts from the sri Sookthi of Sri PiLLai PerumAL Iyengar (Azhagiya MaNavALa Daasar) known as Ashta Prabhandham are chosen by the artist first to illustrate the bhakthi of PiLLai PrumAL IyengAr for ArchA murthys in general and Sri RanganAthA n particular. These Paasurams are literary master pieces from the direct disciple of Paraasara Bhattar. he ecstasy and devotion for the Lord of Srirangam found in these paasurams of Ashta Prabhnadham earned Iyengar the honorific title of "Dhivya Kavi " .
** The first piece is sung in the morning Raagam BhUpALam in the viruttham tradition (without ThALam) to the accompaniment of Flute. Here the dhivya kavi salutes he ArchA Moorthys and states that he is going to ffer his salutations in the AnthAdhi form selected by the Mudhal AzhwArs and Swamy NammAzhwAr ( yERRa MaNavALan--).The reference is to the Sr RanganAtha athivrathai's (ThoNDadippoDi's) ThiruppaLLIyezucchi.
** The second paasuram is set in Raagam SourAshtram and s from the section of Ashta prabhandham known as hiruvaranga Kalambaham. he TaaLam will be Adhi in ost of the renderings except for KaNDa ChApu for two ieces dealing with OOnJal of Sri RangarAjan and Sri RanganAyaki .Mrudhangam joins in now. In this Paasuram , Iyengar performs SaraNAgathi at the sacred feet of the 12 AzhwArs in general and Swamy NammAzhwAr in particular (Vedham thohutthu Tamizh paadal seytha Vimalan--). ere thereference is to Madhura Kavi and His AchArya Bhakthi.
**The third Paaauram is set in Raagam Mohanam to describe the dhivya soundharyam of Sri RanganAthan , His beautiful face , His eyes full of Mercy , His sacred ThuLasi MaalA and His dhivya Aayudhams. Iyengar says that there is nothing for him to fear in this world as long as Sri RanganAthA and His Aayudhams are with him (Periya PerumAL Arangan ---).
**The Fourth Paasuram is coming from ThiruvarangatthanthAdhi and is set in Saaveri raagam. Here Iyengar pays tribute to his Guru parampara starting from Bhattar, EmbAr upward to Sri RanganAyaki and Sri RanganAthA.
** The Fifth verse from ThiruvarangatthanthAdhi is set in Raagam BhEgaDA and salutes the five AchAryAs of RaamAnujar and then ends up stating that EmperumAnAr sitting in the middle of the 74 AchAryAs appointed by him is his succor and sustenance.
** The Sixth verse is from ThiruvEnkata Maalai and is a salute to ThiruvEnakatamudayAn as GajEndhra Varadhan. This paasuram is set in the evening raagam of HinDOLam. Iyengar says that his tongue will not praise any deity other than SrimanNaarAyaNA standing in the form of SeshasEkara Vibhu on top of Thirumalai.
** The seventh verse is set in the morning raagam of DhanyAsi and is from ThiruvEnkata Maalai. Here Iyengar salutes Sri VenkatEsan as the Maayavan , KaNNan ,MaNivaNNan and Kesavan . Iyengar also states that the Lord's nayana dhIkshai will remove every fear and Sri Vaikuntam will not be far away for them , who receive such blessings. We must recall that Lord RanganAthA spent few years at ThiruvEnakatam hills.
** The Eighth paasuram comes from Azhagar AnthAdhi dealing with the praise of Sri SundararAja PerumAL of Solai malai or ThirumAl Irum Solai. In the beautiful raagam of Valaji , the artist and the group sing about the power of Azhagar to melt the hearts and the minds of BhakthAs , who recite His 1000 names (sahasra Naamams). The song starts with the words , "Nenjum uruhum , Uyir uruhum--).
** The Ninth pasuram is also from Azhagar AnthAdhi and is sung in Raagam ShaNmuka PriyA (ParanthAmarai ThirumAl Irum ChOlai Pazha maRayai--). Here Iyengar begs his mind to focus on the sacred feet of Azhagar for his redemption. Sri RanganAthan spent few more years as a guest of Azhagar at ThirumAlirum sOlai.
** The Tenth paasuram is about Thirukkudanthai AarAvamudhan and is set in Raagam Suddha SaavEri. He asks the Lord : " Are You really tired form the enormous efforts to create the Universe and protect it ? Are You the Lord , who extended His feet and measured the Universe during Your avathAram as Thrivikraman? Please speak to me (Kudanthai kiDanthAi pEsu) ".The question is in the spirit of Thirumazhisai AzhwAr's paasuram.
** The Eleventh paasuram is about Sri Oppiliappan of AakAsa Nagaram. Here Iyengar states to the Lord that He had made him think of Him and as a result, he has rejected all the worldly pleasures. The mood portrayed is similar to that Of Thirumangai , who declared "vENDEN manai Vazhkai ViNNagar MEyavanE". This Verse is set in Raagam Hamsadhwani .The passuram starts with " Kaiyum Karutthum unakkE adimai--). The spirit of the paasuram is similar to the famous paasuram Passage of ANDAL (unakkE naamAtcheyvOm ).
** The twelfth verse is about Kaanchi PeraruLALan. Here IyengAr laments that his mind should be constantly thinking about Varadhar only and not about anything else. This piece is set in Raagam Kaapi and starts with the words : " PoruLAsai MaNNAsai --" .
** The thirteenth verse is a marvellous description of Lord RanganAthA giving His sevai in DolOthsavam to Iyengar . The Lord surrounded by Nithya sooris , Aayudhams , AchAryALs are visualized by Iyengar and that results in a PallANDu in the spirit of PeriyAzhwAr from him . This apporva Paasuram providing a visual image of the Lord swinging in His dolai and coming towards us and going away from us is a delight to experience. This Paasuram is set in Raagam KuRinji , a Janya Raagam of SankarAbharaNam ( ThiruvAzhar ThiruvAzhi Sankam Vaazha , Thiruvananthan Garudan SenayArum Vaazha, --AzhwArkaL Vaazha --yathirAjan adiyAr Vaazha --). The thALam of KaNDa ChApu fits marvelously with the rhythmic movement of the Dolai .
** The fourteenth Paasuram is from KonEri Appan Iyengaar , who wished to celebrate the DolOthsavam of Sri RanganAyaki with Sri RanganAthA on a Panguni Uttharam day during sErthi sEvai. He was inspired by PiLlai PerumAL IyengAr's Oosal Paatu for the Lord. He is a later day poet.Appan Iyengar paints here a wonderful word picture of the movement of the bangles, the kinkiNi naadham of the bells attached to the ottiyANam , the plesant naadham raised by the ankle ornaments as Sri RanganAyaki moves back and forth enjoying Her swing . The gentle movement of Her forelocks in the breeze (movement of aLakabhArams) and other AbharaNams are beautifully described in this paasuram set in KamAs Raagam and kanDachApu ThALam .The title of this paasuram is " Sri RanganAyaki AaDirUnjal--".
This side of the tape concludes with a description of AchArya RaamAnujA's saraNAgathi at the sacred feet of the dhivya dampathis and the birth of SaraNAgathi gadhyam . Swamy Desikan's celebration of Prapatthi is alluded to in the concluding portion of this side .
In this posting , adiyEn will conclude the description of the rest of the audio casette paying tribute to ArchAvathArams in general and Sri RanganAthA in particular prepared especially for the 1999 Thiru AdhyayanOthsavam .
** The fifteenth paasuram is a salutation to " Godhai PiRanthavUr , Govindhan VaazhumUr ", SrivilliputthUr . Azhagiya MaNavALa Daasar (PiLLai PerumAl Iyengar) points out that Godhai's glories are sought after for celebration ( kuRitthu oruvar koNDAdum--Godhai). This paasuram is set in Raagam YamunA KalyANi to celebrate the KalyANOthsavam between Godhai and RangamannAr as visualized in the VaaraNam Aayiram paasurams of Godhai.
** The sixteenth paasuram of Iyengar is about the northern dhivya dEsam of ThirukkaNDamkudi or Deva PrayAg on the banks of Gangai. The Lord here is PurushOtthaman saluted by PeriyAzhwAr (nalam thihazh-- and Moonrezhutthu athanai Paasurams). The Goddess is PuNdarikavalli and the vimaanam is Mangala VimAnam. This paasuram is set in the most enchanting Raagam of Revathi and starts with the words: MatthAl Kadal Kadainthu VaanOrkku amuthu aLittha AtthA --". We must remember that the PurushOtthaman at Srirangam has Revathi a sHis janma Nakshathram.
** In the seventeenth paasuram of Ashta Prabhandham , Azhagiya MaNavALa Daasar salutes the 4000 dhivya prabhandhams and his own AchAryan, ParAsara Bhattar. This paasuram is set in BrindhAvana SaarangA. The salute is also to Rangapura VihAran.
** The next four compositions selected by the artist are from Swami Desikan's SthOthra granthams: Sri Sthuthi (16th slOkam ), GodhA sthuthi ( fourth slOkam ), passages from Sri Raghuveera Gadhyam in majestic Aarabhi and the fourth slOkam of Sri Goplaa Vimsathi describing the Lord's NavanItha Naatyam at Nandha Bhavanam in raagam NaadhanAmakriyA.
** The remaining selections are from Desika Prabhandham dealing with Koil (Srirangam ), PerumAL ( VaradarAjan ) and VeRpu ( Thirumalai ). This section starts with a spirited prayer to Lord HayagrIvA ( Visuddha Vij~na Ghana svarUpam ) in Raagam Naattai before the salutations to Sri RanganAtha, Sri VaradarAjA and Sri VenkatEsan . Next comes the last song of AdhikAra sangraham ( VeLLai Parimukar DesikarAi--) in Raagam Naattai .AdhikAra sangraham deals with the 32 chapters of Sri Rahasya thraya Saaram .The other raagams chosen for the paasurams of AdhikAra Sangraham are in the remaining Ghana Raagams :GowLai, Aaarabhi , VarALi and Sri. The paasurams chosen for these Ghana Raagams are :
VeLlai Parimukar --Salutation to his
AarAdhana Moorthy ,HayagrIvan
KaaLam Valampuri-- priase of Sri (RanganAtha) Naatha Muni
Yennyuir tanthu--Acharya Paramparai anusanthAnam from
Sri RaamAnujar up to Sriman NaarAyaNA
** Next , the scene shifts to the brilliant paasuram of Swami Desikan in AdhikAra sangraham offering tribute to the wonderful feet of Periya PerumAL ,which performed so many miracles during KrishNAvathAram. The sixteen individual lines of this Paasuram are split into four Quarters and are sung in four raagAs: Kaapi, BehAg , Sindhu Bhairavi and HamsAnandhi. The ThALam is kaNDa chApu and the genius of Swami Desikan in handling Chantha Nadai is demonstrated brilliantly. AdiyEn will write more about this Paasuram on a future occasion , as needed.
** The next Desika Prabhandha Paasuram chosen is from Amrutha SvAdhini ,which is a summary of 11 Rahasyams from Saara Saaram to Madhura Kavi Hrudhayam in 37 verses. The chosen Paasuram is the famous one , where Swami Desikan performs SaraNAgathi at the lotus feet of Lord RanganAthA with all the five angAs ( KaarpaNyam/first line, PrAthikUlya Varjanam/second line, AanUkoolya Sankalpam/3rd line , Mahaa VisvAsam/4th line , and Gopthruva VaraNam/ fifth and the sixth lines of the Paasuram). Aathma samarpaNam follows in the 7th and the 8th lines of this 8-lined paasuram. The Raagam chosen is the tranquil KaanadA to reflect the relief of a Prapannan after Prapatthi.The mood of Bhara saamarpaNam and Aathma NivEdhanam is beautifully brought out by the artist and team.
** The very last Paasuram from Desika Prabhandham is another YeNN SeerAsiriya Viruttham (8-lined verse) from AdhikAra sangraham dealing with the SthAna VisEshAdhikAram (the 19th Chapter of Srimath RahasyaThraya Saaram): AarAtha AruL amudham Pothintha Koil.. This beautiful paasuram eulogizing the glories of Sriranga KshEthram is sung in heroic SimmEndhramadhyamam.This Paasuram is a tribute to the Uthsavar , KasthUri Rangan , who is recognized as Sri Raamachandran at Srirangam .
With this Paasuram , the tape comes to the conclusion. The taping was done by the group itself on the Academy dais without professional help. The choice of Paasurams and the tuning in appropriate RaagAs and ThALams to echo the mood of the paasurams and slOkams of Swami Desikan are simply brilliant.
The very last sound that one hears in this tape is the joyous peelings of the GhantA of Thirumalai to symbolize the GhaNtAvataaran, Sri VedAntha Desikan.
SrimathE RanganAyaki SamEtha Sri
RangarAjAya NamO nama:
Daasan, Oppiliappan Koil VaradAchAri SadagOpan