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SrimatE Raamaanujaaya Namaha //
SrimatE Nigamaanta Mahaa Desikaaya Namaha //
SrIman! SrI Ranga Sriyam anupadravam anudhinam Samvardhaya/
SrIman! SrI Ranga Sriyam anupadravam anudhinam Samvardhaya//
KAvEri VardhathAm kAlE, kAlE varshathu vAsava: /
SrI RanganAthO jayathu Sri Ranga Sri cha VardhathAm//
SRI RANGA SRI VOL.04 / ISSUE # 22 dated 13th May 2003

Dear BhAgavatAs:


Suggestions on the time for performing Tiruvaaraadhanam for Lord Nrisimha and for recitation of Nrisimha Stotras on the occasion are given.
The details of the eclipse and the Sankalpam to be adopted are presented.
(21ST TO 26TH MAY 2003)
The Hindu Temple of Atlanta is celebrating the 4th BrahmOtsavam and the 11th Anniversary of the temple. We present excerpts from the talk to be delivered on Saturday, 24th May 2003 at 8.00pm. BhAgavatAs residing in or around Atlanta or passing through Atlanta at the time are cordially invited to attend the talk.
Prof. Narasimhacharya, Retd. Professor, Madras University (now a visiting Professor in the Oxford University) EXCLUSIVELY for publication in ?Sri Ranga Sri?. The learned Professor delivered this ?The Sripad Endowment Lecture? on 5th February 2003. (Text of the lecture received from Dr. Miss M.S.Ramesh, IAS)
(Anbil Ramaswamy)
Based on Monograph of MahaamahOpaadhyaaya Sri Srivatsaankaachaar Swami, now Head of Dept. French Indolgical Research Institute, Pondicherry
And ?MaharishigaL Charitram? by Mimamsa SirOmaNi Mimamsa Vidvan Mimamsa Kovida, Ubhaya Mimamsa Saaragjna, Veda Vedanta ChooDaamaNi Sri N.S. Devanathachariar (referred by Sri Srivatsankachariar Swami) and
7. FROM MAHABHARATA: YAKSHA PRASNAM? Part 23: Prasnams 66 and 67
By Sri M.K. Ramaswamy Iyengar Swami, Senior Officer of Govt. of India.
(These could not be accommodated due to space constraints)
105 Regular issues have been released, so far (besides several Special Issues) -
- 27 Issues of Vol. 1
- 15 Issues of Vol. 2
- 42 Issues of Vol. 3 &
- 21 Issues of Vol. 4

These issues have been archived for public view at -
Sri Diwakar Kannan who is archiving these in the files section has moved to India. He is busy relocating. He is requested to update this as soon as he finds time.

We strongly urge you to kindly peruse the "Regular Issues" archived in the ?Files? Section and view the Contents at ?srsindex.html?
(Not the individual postings allowed encouraging "Reader participation").

We are sure that you will be convinced of the quality of the contents.

IF you are satisfied with the quality and contents of
?Sri Ranga Sri?:
Tell your friends to join by sending an email to ?

IF not:
Tell us, as to how we may improve.

Anbil Ramaswamy
Editor & Publisher
?Sri Ranga Sri?
The ?Files? Section also contains
- The full text of ?Art of Living?? (a write up on the Life and works of Swami Desika)
by Sri M.K.Sudarshan of Kuwait.
- Important days in the year Subhaanu, with text of Sankalpams for different occasions like Amavasya etc. by Sri K.P.Narasimhan Swami.
Kindly also peruse the following files at the sites indicated:
(Maintained by Sri Madhava Kannan from Singapore) ? for
-       Biography of Bhagavad Ramanuja ?
-       Biography of Swami Desika ?
-       Acharya Vamsa Vriksham ?
-       Srimad Rahasya Traya Saram
-       and other links.
(Maintained by Sri Venkatesh Elayavalli from California)
SDDS Volume 1 / Issues 1 to 33
SDDS Volume 2 / Issues 1 to 26
SDDS Volume 3 / Issue 1
SaraNAgati Vol. 1 / Issues 1 - 24
SaraNAgati Vol. 2 / Issues 1 - 04
For ?Hinduism Rediscovered?
and other links
(Maintained by Sri R.M. Venkat from Bahrain) for -
- Dasavatara Stotram meanings
-?Srimad Rahasya Traya Saaram? and other links
in the ?Philosophy? section
Sri Nrisimha Jayanti falls on 15th May 2003 (Thursday). As Sri Nrisimha appeared at dusk (which was neither day nor night) the Tiruvaradhanam for Sri Nrisimha should be done around Sunset on that day. We suggest the recitation of one or more of Sri Nrisimha Stotras like
- Mantra Raaja Pada Stotram,
- RuNa VimOchana Nrisimha Stotram,
- Sri Lakshmi Nrisimha Karaavalambha Stotram of 45th Azhagiya Singhar or at least
- Nrisimha Gaayatri along with Sri Nrisimha AshTOttaram
It is a coincidence that this day also happens to be PourNami. There will be a complete eclipse of the moon (PoorNa Chandra GrahaNam) which WILL NOT BE SEEN IN INDIA but will be visible in the U.S.A. and other places.

TarpaNam is to be done at any time during the period of visibility of the eclipse and in the locations where the eclipse is visible.

NASA has the following information on the places and timings of this eclipse.
Sri T.R Govindarajan Swami has provided us with the excerpts from NASA. Our sincere thanks to him for this help:

? srI:
Lunar Eclipse is NOT visible in Asia (Singapore, India). Eclipse is visible in Americas except Alaska, Africa and Europe including Middle East.

From NASA's web, the visibility of Eclipse is described as follows:
The eclipse will be widely visible from the Americas, Europe, and Africa. The eastern half of North America will witness the entire event, while the partial phases will already be in progress at moonrise from the western portions of the continent. Similarly, the Moon sets in Europe during various stages of the eclipse. Observers in Ontario, Quebec, the Maritime
Provinces and eastern U. S. will see all phases of the eclipse. Farther to the west, the eclipse begins before moonrise but totality will still be visible from the region except from Yukon and Alaska.

In the East Coast of US (NY, NJ, MD etc), the eclipse begins at 9.05 PM EDT on May 15 and ends at 2.15 AM EDT on May 16, 2003.

Please look at the following URLs to verify which part of Eclipse is visible in your area.
The URL will display the eclipse over the world map,

To see the timings of Eclipse in your city/town, please visit URL:
For US cities, use Form A. For others, use Form B.
The display shows timings in Universal Time or GMT.

To convert timings from UT to your local time, please look at URL
for computing the local time from UT (GMT).
All computations should be done with reference to the point of time of Sunrise for any location.
The Sankalpam in U.S.A will be roughly as follows:
LOCATION: ?krouncha dweepE, Aindra khaNDE, RamaNaka VarshE?etc?
TIME: ?Prabhavaadi ShashTi SamvatsaraaNaam madhyE Svabhaanu naama SamvatsarE, UttraayaNE, Vasanta Rutou, Vrishbha MaasE, KrishNa pakshE, PourNamyaam PuNya titou (1), Guru Vaasara yuktaayaam (2), Vissakaa Nakshatra yuktaayaam (3)?etc?

As per Paambhu Panchaangam: (Assuming Sunrise to be at 6.00am)
(1) Chaturdasi ends at 15.55 naazhigai in the afternoon on 15th May 2003 and PourNami rules at the time of eclipse.
(2) As for us, Friday commences only at Sunrise; it will still be Thursday when the eclipse takes place.
(3) Swaati Nakshatram ends at 23.37 naazhigai (i.e) evening on 15th May 2003 and Visaaka Nakshatram rules at the time of eclipse.

Scholars well versed in the almanac calculations may, however, suggest any alternate mode, if the above is not found acceptable.
(21ST TO 26TH MAY 2003)
The Hindu Temple of Atlanta is celebrating the 4th BrahmOtsavam and the 11th Anniversary of the temple. We present excerpts from the talk to be delivered on Saturday 24th May 2003 at 8.00pm.
BhAgavatAs residing in or around Atalanta or passing through Atlanta at the time are cordially invited to attend the talk.
We are celebrating the 4th BrahmOtsavam in our temple in May 2003.
The earlier three were held in May 2000, 2001 and 2002.
The term ?BrahmOtsavam? has two key words in it. ?Brahma? and ?Utsavam?.
All of us know that ?Utsavam? means celebration.
What is special about ?BrahmOtsavam? and why is it called so?

Of all Sri VaishNava shrines, four Divya dEsams stand apart with an unending stream of Utsavams throughout the year viz., Tirumalai of TiruvenkaTam uDaiyaan, Srirangam-deemed to be the heaven on earth (BhoolOka VaikunTam), Kaanchi-renowned as one of the seven liberation granting cities (Mukti tarum nagar yEzhuL mukkiyamaam Kachi) and Tirunanarayanapuram.

Several Utsavams are celebrated in these and other temples (e.g.) NityOtsavams (daily), KaalOtsavams (Seasonal), KaamyOtsavams (sponsored by devotees like KalyaNotsavams) and SuddhOtsavams for purification of the temple premises (like periodical PavitrOtsavams, occasional functions like JeerNOddhaaraNa Utsavams after repairs, renewals and after an eclipse. But, BrahmOtsavam takes the pride of place among all these.

?Brahma? means ?Great?. We come across the association of the term ?Brahma? with expressions such as - Brahma charya (Celibacy), Brahma Muhoortha (auspicious time), Brahma Randra (aperture in the crown of head), Brahma Rishi (Sage of the highest order), Brahma Vidya (Sacred Knowledge), Brahma aNDa (Egg shaped Universe), Brahma Aananda (ultimate joy), Brahma astra (great mythical weapon), Brahma Upadesa (incantation of the great truths at the time of investing a boy with the sacred thread), Brahma Sutra (one of the three esoteric scriptures called Prastaana Traya).

It will be seen from these that the word is used to denote anything that is of supreme importance or with unsurpassed glory.

In fact, in the Vedas, God is called ?Brahmam?, indeed the Para-Brahmam, the Parama-purusha, Iswara, the omnipotent, omnipresent, Omniscient Supreme Soul who supports (Adhaara), controls (niyanta) and has mastery (Seshi) over all sentient beings (chEtanas) including the celestials, the human, the flora and the fauna as well as insentient things (achEtanas) all of which constitute His body (Sareera) for whom He is the Indweller (antaryaami).

The concept of `Brahman" is a courageous attempt to verbalize an essentially mystical experience which defies description. The changeless principle that holds the changing world together and gives it coherence, that on which the warp and woof of the world are interwoven, that which is abiding in the earth, which is other than the earth, whom the earth does not know, whose body is earth, who controls the earth from within and without - this unknown, unknowable something, our seers and sages of ancient times called the `Brahman'. No wonder that the Utsavam in honor of this ?Brahman? is called ?BrahmOtsavam? and is celebrated with great éclat. pomp and pageantry.

It is also believed that the four-faced Brahma initiated this festival in the first place and hence it is also called ? Aadhi BrahmOtsavam?.

?BrahmOtsavam?, usually a nine-day festival is generally celebrated in the month in which the Tirunakshatram (Birthday) of the temple deity falls. For example, In Srirangam, it is in the month of Panguni (meena maasa) in which falls the birth star of Lord Ranganatha (Revati) and Sri Ranganayaki Thaayaar (Utthra palguni). In Tirumalai, the main BrahmOtsavam is held in the month of PuraTTasi (kanya maasa) in which ?Sravanam?, the birth star of TiruvEnkaTam uDaiyaan falls. In Kancheepuram, it is in the month Vaikaasi (Vrishaba maasa) when Hastam, the birth star of Lord Varadaraja falls.

It is also celebrated in the month in which the temple is ceremonially installed (PratishTaapana KumbhabhishEkam or SamprOkshaNam).

The most fascinating aspect of BrahmOtsavam is the array of vehicles (Vaahanams) on which the Lord goes on His rounds adorning different costumes both in the mornings and evenings, giving Darshan to one and all including those who could not or would not come to the temple!

Except for the Dwaja AarOhaNam (hoisting of the temple flag) on the first day and the Dwaja AvarOhaNam (the lowering of the flag) on the concluding day of the festival, the sequence of costumes or the Vaahanams on which the Lord is decorated is not same in all the temples. But, whatever sequence is adopted in a particular temple, is usually followed in that temple every year.

The decorations and the Vaahanams are not merely ornamental. Each has a special significance in bringing out one or more of the various auspicious qualities (kalyaaaNa guNas) of the Lord.

ASWA (Horse): The Lord is seen as the eternal youth (nitya yuva) riding on the horse in style with a whip in hand. This is uniformly followed in all the temples on the evening of the 8th day. The stately gait in moving forward and backward on the golden horse, called Vaiyaali is a special Sevai in Srirangam.

GAJA (Elephant): the majesty of the Lord riding majestically on the elephant reminds us that He is THE peerless and the Supreme ?Master of the universe? (Iswaratvam)

SIMHA (Lion) AND YAALI (a mythological animal with the face of a lion and trunk and tusks of an elephant): indicate the omnipotence of the Lord (Sarva -Saktitvam).

GARUDA SEVAI: Placing of His two feet on the palms of the divine falcon, the Lord seems to tell us: ? Behold! Here are my feet! Hold on to them. You will be liberated!? The GaruDa Sevai in Kaanchi is a world famous event when millions of devotees congregate to have darshan. As the Lord emerges from the temple gates, invariably we can see GaruDa birds hovering over on the skies.

SESHA (Serpent): This will bring before our eyes how the Lord of Paramapadam appears reclining on His serpent couch on the milky ocean (Kshheeraabdhi) with all the celestials in attendance.

HANUMANTHA (AnjanEya): Like GaruDa (known as Periya TiruvaDi) AnjanEya (known as Siriya TiruvaDi) also holds on his outstretched palms the holy feet of the Lord, reminding us how we should hold Lord?s feet.

KALPAGA VRIKSHAM (The wish-yielding tree): The Lord who can fulfill all the desires of His devotees seems to reassure us additionally seated under the wish-yielding tree (known for its munificence even otherwise).

SURYA PRABHA (The Sun dial): indicates how the Lord seated in the center of the orb of the Sun (Surya maNDala madhyavarthi) lends radiance to the Sun himself!

CHANDRA PRABHA (The arc of the moon): In this, the Lord radiates the cool and sweet rays of the moon indicative of His infinite compassion.

HAMSA (Swan): The soft and benign glance of the Lord is matched by the gentle gait of the swan and shows His easy accessibility (Sowmyam)

RATHAMS AND PALLAKKUS (Chariots and Palanquins): The Lord rides on different kinds of chariots and palanquins like Golden, mirrored, cuscus grass (veTTivEr) decked, flower decked (poonthEr), gOratham (in Srirangam), PuNyakOti Vimaanam (in Kaanchi), Alum Pallakku (Palanquin borne by bearers (Sriman taangigaL) etc. These reveal the mastery of the Lord (Swamitvam).

As for the costumes, the most notable is-

NAACHIYAAR TIRUKKOLAM: Donning the costumes of a seductress (mOhini), the Lord appears in all the feminine grace and charm, with braided hairs (Savuri and JaDai), ornaments usually worn by ladies, with hair-do and lot of fragrant flowers. The compassion, tolerance, the benign blissful side-glance and such other qualities of Thaayaar come through with consummate effect in this costume, assuring us that He is indeed as merciful as the divine mother. It is so bewitching that it would be hard for us to take our eyes off the beauty of the Lord in this kOlam. No wonder, the Asuras fell for her at the time of the churning of the milky ocean for the divine nectar.

This usually precedes the VaikunTa Ekadasi day in Srirangam. The ?sErthi? of PerumaaL and Thaayaar on Panguni Utthram day is a major event in Srirangam. It was on one of these occasions that Bhagavad Ramanuja poured out SaraNaagathi Gadhyam, Sriranga Gadhyam and VaikunTa Gadhyam and surrendered at the feet of the divine couple. Thus, the various Vaahanas and costumes proclaim the glory of the Lord and point to His innumerable auspicious qualities.

May the Divya dampatis shower their choicest blessings on all of us.
Sri Ranga MangaLa nidhim karuNaa nivaasam
Sri VenkaTaadri Sikharaalaya KaaLa mEgam /
Sri Hasti saila SikhrOjwala Paarijaatam
Sreesam Namaami sirasaa yadhu saila dheepam //
Prof. Narasimhacharya, Retd. Professor, Madras University (now a visiting Professor in the Oxford University) EXCLUSIVELY for publication in ?Sri Ranga Sri?. The learned Professor delivered this ?The Sripad Endowment Lecture? on 5th February 2003.
(Text of the lecture received from Dr. Miss M.S.Ramesh, IAS)
KaaLidaasa became a celebrity by his own inborn gift of poetic genius. His greatness was admitted by one and all. He was quoted reverentially even by great mimamsaka Kumaarila BhaTTa in his Tantra Vaartika (1.3.2). Attesting to the statement of the Dharma Saastras that dictates of one?s own conscience can sometimes be taken as PramaaNa. Kumaarila BhaTTa says:

Evam cha vidvad vachanaad vinirgatam
Prasiddharoopam kavibhir niroopitam /
Sataam hi sandEha padEshu vastushu
PramaaNam antah karaNa-pravruttyah //

KaaLidaasa in his ?abhijnaana Saakuntala? (Act I) speaks of Dushyanta who fell in love with Sakuntala at first sight. He knew that she was the daughter of the Sage KaNva who was a Brahmin by caste. Can a Kshatriya marry a Brahmin girl? But, his heart was telling him that he could marry her. It is this context that the poet has put these words into the mouth of Dushyanta.

A-samsayam kshatra- prigrahakshamaa
Yad aaryam asyaam abhilaasi mE manah /
Sataam hi sandEha padEshu vastushu
PramaaNanam antah karaNa pravruttyah // (I.20)

? Undoubtedly she is fit to be the wife of a Kshatriya, since my noble mind covets her. In matters of doubt, the inclination of their minds is, to the virtuous ones, an unerring guide?

Sri Sankara in his commentary on Verse 18 of the 15th Chapter of the Gita makes a veiled reference to KaaLidaasa. This is the Verse in question:

Yasmaat ksharam ateetO ahm
Aksharaadapi cha uttama: /
AtO asmi lokE veDE cha
Pratitah PurushOttama: //

Lord KrishNa tells Arjuna: ?I am known as PurushOttama both in the Vedic and the secular literature because I am superior to both the principles of kshara (the bound souls) and the a-kshara (the liberated souls)?

Achaarya Sankara observes: ?The word ?lOkE? in the verse (in the secular literature) means, in the literary works of poets?. Explaining this expression, Sri Madhusoodana Saraswati, the last name in Advaita philosophy, in his commentary called ?gooDaartha deepikaa? writes:

Hari yathaikah purushOttamah smartah iti prasiddham?

Among the celestials, the name PurushOttama denotes unmistakably to Lord VishNu and nobody else?

It is interesting to note that Sri Ramanuja in the opening portion of his Sri Baashya explains the word ?Brahman? of the Sutra
"athaatO brahma jigjnaasa" (1/1/1) as PurushOttama:

?brahma sabdEna cha scabhaavatO nirasta-nikhiladOshO anavadika- atisaya- asankhyEya- kalyaaNa guNa ? GaNaah purushOttamah abhidheeyatE?

?harir Yathika: PurushOttama: Smrutaa:
mahEswara: Trayambaka Eva na apara: /
tathaa vidur maam munaya: satakrataum
dviteeyagaami nahi sabda esha nah //

All this is just to show how famous KaaLidaasa was even with the writers on Saastras and Vedanta. So, it is not fair to attempt a comparison between the poetic geniuses of KaaLidaasa and Desika. Religion and poetry are two different things and there is no need to attempt a comparison. Desika has already attained supreme glory by his literary writings, commentaries and independent works bearing on Vedanta and Saastras like Mimamsa and Nyaaya. He does not need our support to claim supremacy in poetic talents through a comparison with the works of KaaLidaasa.

Of course, one can do well by reading these two SandEsa kaavyas side by side and enjoy the lyrical beauties in an impartial way, giving each poet the credit and admiration he deserves. Aanandavardhana of the 10th century, one of the greatest Aalamkaarikas who propounded the theory of Dvani (Suggestion) as the soul of poetry, states that Mahaakavi KaaLidaasa became a celebrity long ago through hundreds of wise sayings. Any attempt to depict him in a lesser color will only reflect the misguided enthusiasm of the person who embarks upon such a venture. To quote:
?Tattu sookti sahsradyOtitaatmanaam mahaatmanaam dOshOdghOshaNam aatmana eva dooshaNam bhavati??
-- To Continue ?
Swami Desikan detailed in the second chapter (the SAranishkarsha adhikAram) the knowledge which is of the absolute essence, the acquisition of only which could lead us on to Liberation, all other sources of wisdom being only incidental or inessential.

The next chapter, the PradhAna Pratitantra adhikAram, tells us about the tenets unique to our VisishtAdvaita siddhAntam. The Pratitantram or Unique Selling Point, by definition, is that which is enthusiastically espoused by us and, by the same token, is not acceptable to other schools of thought. It is thus a doctrine exclusive to our Sampradaya, over which nobody else can or wishes to lay a claim. It is the lifeline of our philosophy, on which is built the entire citadel of VisishtAdvaita. Remove this, and the entire structure becomes hollow and unstable. Thus an unclouded understanding of this Critical Concept is essential for the comprehension of the forthcoming matters.

As stated above, we are concerned here about the Primary Principle unique to our philosophy. In our SiddhAnta, the Brahmam is a Prime Concept. However, since it is accepted by other schools of Vedanta like Dwaita and Advaita, it is not Critical to us-it might be "PradhAnam" or primary, but it is not "Pratitantram" or unique to us. There are other minor matters, which are unique to our Sampradaya, which may not be critical enough to merit the definition, as for instance the concept of "Kainkaryam". It is no doubt a "Pratitantram" or unique concept, but not "PradhAnam" or of primacy. What we must look for is something, which is both Unique to our school of thought, as well as Critical to the very basis of the same-some tenet, which is both "PradhAnam" and "Pratitantram".

Outlining the Critical Concept of our philosophy, Swami Desikan declares it to be the relationship of Body and Owner of the Body, subsisting between all souls, sentient and non-sentient, on the one hand, and the Lord on the other-the "SharIra-Atma sambandham". In other words, the Lord is the Universal Atma or Paramatma, while all Jeevatmas, occupying bodies sentient and otherwise, form His body. It is this SharIra-SharIri bhAvam, which is referred to by Swami Nammazhwar in the very first decad of Tiruvaimozhi. Striving to clarify the prime principle of our Sampradaya at the very beginning of his work, Azhwar says that the Lord is present in every being and object as its antaryAmi or inner-dweller, akin to the life-spirit in all beings-"udal misai uyir ena karandu engum paranduLan:? Just as it is difficult for us to see our life spirit or soul, so too the Lord remains invisible-"Karandu uLan"-though very much an integral part of ourselves.

Thus the entire system of life consists of three concepts:
- The inert physical body, made up of the basic elements, which has no spark of life on its own, is the first of these.
- The second is the Jeevatma or individual soul that inhabits the body, as a result of its accumulated baggage of good and bad deeds done over countless previous janmas. It is this Jeevatma who is the owner of the body, directing the body as per its own (Jeevatma's) wishes to walk, run, lie down, bend etc. That the Jeevatma is different from the body can be understood from the fact that when the life spirit ebbs from the body and the Jeevatma leaves its mortal coils to acquire another (much in the fashion of a man discarding dirty or worn out clothes in favor of new ones) the body, hitherto a vibrant and dynamic mechanism, is reduced to an inert carcass, lifeless, unmoving and subject to quick decay and destruction. The body can thus never survive without the enlivening spark of the Jeevatma inhabiting it. The departure of the Jeevatma spells the end of the body. Thus while the Jeevatma or individual soul is eternal in nature, hopping from one body to another depending upon its Karma, the physical body is made of natural elements and is perishable in character.
- Just as the body has an inner dweller in the form of the Jeevatma, the Jeevatma too has an antaryAmi -the Lord. It is the Lord who enters all souls and directs them from within -"anta: pravishta: shAstA janAnAm sarvAtmA" says the Aranyaka, clarifying the nature of the third component of the system of life mentioned above. It would appear that the exact place of residence of the Paramatma is inside the heart. Considering that the Lord dwells within the Jeevatma, it follows that the Jeevatma too resides in the heart of the physical body. The Gita confirms this location of the Lord in the heart of all beings-"Iswara: sarva bhootAnAm hrit dEsE Arjuna! Tishthati"

To summarize, the physical body is the sharIram or outer cover for the Jeevatma, but for whom the body has no separate existence. Similarly, the Paramatma resides within the Jeevatma and the latter forms the sharIram for the former. We thus have the Jeevatma with the physical body as its outer cover and Paramatma, for whom both the Jeevatma and its body are the outer cover. Thus both the Jeevatma and the physical body form the sharIram for the Paramatma. This, in a nutshell, is our PradhAna Pratitantram or Critical Concept, which forms the subject matter of this Chapter.

How do we define a body or sharIram and the sharIri or the owner of the body?

Whatever is supported, whatever is controlled and made to act according to another's wishes, and whatever is made use of by another for the latter's pleasure, forms the sharIram. The entity which supports the other, controls and directs its action or inaction and uses the other for its own purposes, is the sharIri or inhabitant of the body

What are the three types of association obtained from this relationship of SharIri (owner of the body) and SharIra (the body) subsisting between the Lord and us respectively?

These are as follows: -
1) DhArakatvam-
Emperuman forms the source of support for all of us. He is the universal support, without whom no being, sentient or otherwise, would continue to have an existence. It is the individual soul which supports the physical body, as is evident from the fact that the latter turns into decaying matter once the former leaves. Similarly, the Paramatma too is the sole source of support for all Jeevas, inhabiting sentient and non-sentient objects. Since He constitutes the inner dweller and the rest of this world His body, just as the body falls down inert when the Jeevatma leaves it, so too this world of chEtana (sentient) and achEtana (non-sentient) matter would exist no more, but for the Lord inhabiting it as the SharIri. Thus the SharIra Atma sambandham or the SharIra-SharIri bhavam results in the relationship of DhArakam (support) and DhAryam (the supported) between the Lord and the Jeevas respectively.

Conversely, does it follow that whatever is supported would automatically form the SharIram for the source of support? For instance, the ground on which a pot stands obviously forms the support for the vessel. Does it mean that the pot, as the supported item, forms the SharIra or body of the earth, which is the supporter? Not so, for the pot may stand on the ground or on the shelf or may be held in a hand, which would mean differing sources of support at different times, all of which cannot form the body of the pot. Thus for an object to form the sharIram of a supporting entity, the supporting source must be of a permanent nature, offering constant sustenance and not merely occasionally. Also, mere DhArakatvam would not presuppose the SharIra-Atma bhavam: Swami Desikan points out that two additional criteria are required to be satisfied.

2). NiyAmyatvam-
The in-dwelling Paramatma is the controller of the chEtana and achEtana objects. If we have to move our little finger, it would be possible only if He wills it. "avan indri Or aNuvum asayAdu" might be a common man's saying, but it has a wealth of meaning and truth in it. The Lord is the "sUtradhAri" or puppeteer who makes us dance as mere dolls on strings, to movements carefully choreographed by Him. He is thus the "niyantA" or controller, while we form the "niyAmyam" or the controlled.

While the first function of DhArakatvam is done through the physical support provided by the Lord to the entire world which forms His body, which He supports and sustains, the second one of NiyAmyatvam or Controllership is done through His divine will or Sankalpam. He wills that such an event happens, with the aid of such and such people using such and such objects, and it happens as He willed.

3). SEshitvam-
Defining a "SEsha", Sri Bhashyakara says "paragata atisaya AdhAna icchayA upAdEyatvam Eva yasya svaroopam, sa SEsha: para: SEshI"

Thus one who exists solely for the purpose of somebody's pleasure and whose role is to bring some sort of distinction to the other person is a "SEsha" and the masterly counterpart, for whose purpose the former exists, is the "SEshi". All of us exist and act for the sole use and pleasure of the Lord. Just as it is a servant's duty to do all that is required for the master and to be of use to the latter in all ways, we too, as the eternal servants of the Lord, are bound to be of service to Him in all ways, always-"sarva kAla, sarva vidha, sarvAvasthOchita kinkara:"

This Seshatvam is sometimes caused by ephemeral relationships ?
We obey our parents and do whatever they tell us to do. An employee does the work allotted to him by his master, for remuneration. The wife ministers to the needs of her husband and children, while the husband too works hard to keep his family well cared for. While there is an element of Seshatvam in all this, these are but temporary relationships, which would be brought to an end by the passing away of a parent or a child or a husband. Further, even in the aforesaid relationships, the wife is not a permanent sEshi or servitor of her husband and family, because familial roles keep changing. Once she becomes an elderly parent, her sons and daughters - in- law care for her welfare, in a reversal of roles.

However, there is only one person to whom we are eternal servitors, irrespective of the body we sport and our social, economic or academic status. We are "bonded laborers" (albeit bound by a bond of love and devotion), blessed with the opportunity of eternal servitude to the Lord, who is the permanent, unchanging ("nirupAdhika") "SEshI". Since the Master is eternal and the servant too a timeless entity, their relationship too is permanent and unchanging. While the head of a family could at most claim his wife and children as his sEshAs, to the Lord everyone, without exception, is a SEsha. He is thus the "nirupAdhika sarva sEshi".

To Continue
(Anbil Ramaswamy)
Based on Monograph of MahaamahOpaadhyaaya Sri Srivatsaankaachaar Swami, now Head of Dept. French Indolgical Research Institute, Pondicherry and ?MaharishigaL Charitram? by Mimamsa SirOmaNi Mimamsa Vidvan Mimamsa Kovida, Ubhaya Mimamsa Saaragjna, Veda Vedanta ChooDaamaNi Sri N.S. Devanathachariar (referred by Sri Srivatsankachariar Swami)
YAKSHA PRASNAM? Part 23: Prasnams 66and 67
By Sri M.K. Ramaswamy Iyengar Swami, Senior Officer of Govt. of India
(These could not be accommodated in this issue due to space constraints

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