SrIvachana bhUshaNam – sUthram 53

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avathArikai (Introduction)

The previous sUthram (thannaip pENavum paNNum dharikkavum paNNum) explained that AzhwArs’ self efforts, to make emperumAn come and as he comes, pushing him away, which are mutually contradictory qualities, are caused by their overwhelming devotion; such mutually contradictory qualities which occur in chEthanas (jIvAthmAs) due to the overwhelming bhakthi with respect to bhagavAn, are also seen in those aspects which are related to bhagavAn – says piLLai lOkAchAryar.

sUthram 53

indha svabhAva viSEshangaL kalyANa guNangaLilum, thiruchcharangaLilum, thirunAmangaLilum, thirukkuzhalOsaiyilum kANalAm.

Simple Explanation

These special aspects are observed in emperumAn’s divine qualities, divine arrows, divine names and divine sound of the flute.

vyAkyAnam (Commentary)

indha …

indha svabhAva viSEshangaL

Here piLLai lOkAchAryar is not speaking about what was explained in previous sUthrams (i.e. the overwhelming bhakthi), but is saying “such special aspects”. That is, the principle of while bhagavAn being the enjoyable aspect, remains the same, for those who experience him, he appears to be the one who sustains and the one who harms.

kalyANa guNangaLilum

His divine qualities appear to be sustaining as said in nAchchiyAr thirumozhi 8.3 “gOvindhan guNam pAdi Avi kAththiruppEnE” (I will sing gOvindhan’s qualities and sustain myself) and to be harming as said in thiruvAimozhi 8.1.8 “valvinaiyEnai IrginRa guNangaLai udaiyAy” (You are having qualities which are piercing me who is having very strong sins). Hence such varying effect is seen in divine qualities.


His divine arrows appear to be sustaining as said in periya thirumozhi 7.3.4 “sarangaLANda thaNdAmaraik kaNNanukkanRi en manam thAzhndhu nillAdhE” (My heart will not sustain by anyone other than the lotus eyed lord who ruled the arrows) and to be harming as said in periya thirumozhi 10.2.9 “sarangaLE kodidhAy aduginRa” (the arrows are cruelly hurting me). Hence such varying effect is seen in divine arrows.


His divine names appear to be sustaining as said in thirunedundhANdagam 14 “thirumAlaip pAdak kEttu madakkiLiyaik kai kUppi vaNanginALE” (On hearing her humble pet parrot sing the divine names of SrIman nArAyaNan, she worshipped it by joining her palms) and to be harming as said in thiruvAimozhi 9.5.8 “kaNNan nAmamE kuzharik konRIr” (you blabbered krishNa’s name and are killing me). Hence such varying effect is seen in divine names.

thirukkuzhal Osaiyilum

His divine flute sound appears to be sustaining as said in perumAL thirumozhi 6.9 “engaLukkE oru nAL vandhUdha un kuzhalinnisai pOdharAyE” (Will you not play your divine sound of flute for us, once?) and to be harming as said in thiruvAimozhi 9.9.5 “avanudaith thInguzhal IRumAlO” (krishNa’s sweet flute sound is piercing us). Hence such varying effect is seen in divine sound of flute.

The divine qualities etc which are always enjoyable are appearing to be sustaining or harming based on the state of the love of the enjoyers (AzhwArs) and not by the nature of the qualities etc. Hence, the special aspects which occur due to the overwhelming devotion can be seen in these qualities etc as well,

Though the quoted pAsurams which highlight the different disposition towards emperumAn’s qualities etc are not from the same AzhwAr [they are from different AzhwArs], since all AzhwArs are of the same nature, and since bhakthi of all of those AzhwArs is mercifully granted by bhagavAn, and as the purpose here is to demonstrate the nature of those special aspects of the bhakthi only, there is no contradiction in quoting different AzhwArs’ pAsurams.

[Another query]

Is periya thirumozhi 10.2.9 “sarangaLE kodidhAy aduginRa” not the statement of rAkshasas who were won over by SrI rAma? Can that be considered as a contradictory statement for what is said in periya thirumozhi 7.3.4 “sarangaLANda“? Since thirumangai AzhwAr desires the victory of SrI rAma, he assumed the mood of the rAkshasas who were defeated by SrI rAma and spoke in the mood of those rAkshasas just as he would assume the mood of pirAttis (divine consorts of bhagavAn) and speak in their mood. This is how the commentators explained this pAsuram in its commentary. Hence, there is nothing wrong in considering it as a proof for the divine arrows harming her, as AzhwAr assumed their mood due to his loving nature and considered that the divine arrows were harming him.

Another explanation (for sUthrams 52 and 53).

By the two reactions which are explained in “thannaip pENavum paNNum dharikkavum paNNum” (nurturing the self and sustaining the self), the overwhelming bhakthi which makes the AthmA engage in self-effort to make him come instead of waiting until he comes and when he comes, due to romantic anger, pushing him away and still sustaining, are explained; piLLai lOkAchAryar analyses if the same contradictory reactions can be seen in other aspects. That is, these special reactions such as speaking about the particular aspect as the one which sustains in one state of mind and as the one which harms in another state as seen in nAchchiyAr thirumozhi 8.3 “gOvindhan guNam pAdi Avi kAththiruppEnE“, can be seen in his auspicious qualities etc which cause both sustenance and harm.

Thus, from sUthram 23 “prapaththikku“, up to here, the greatness of prapaththi, the greatness of the target of prapaththi, the three types of personalities who perform prapaththi, the importance of prapaththi which is caused by overwhelming devotion among the three types of prapaththi, the way the prapaththi becomes invalid due to the states of bhakthi, and the reactions of such bhakthi were all mercifully explained by piLLai lOkAchAryar.

adiyen sarathy ramanuja dasan

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About sarathyt

Disciple of SrImath paramahamsa ithyAdhi pattarpirAn vAnamAmalai jIyar (29th pattam of thOthAdhri mutt). Descendant of komANdUr iLaiyavilli AchchAn (bAladhanvi swamy, a cousin of SrI ramAnuja). Born in AzhwArthirungari, grew up in thiruvallikkENi (chennai), lived in SrIperumbUthUr, presently living in SrIrangam. Learned sampradhAyam principles from (varthamAna) vAdhi kEsari azhagiyamaNavALa sampathkumAra jIyar swamy, vELukkudi krishNan swamy, gOmatam sampathkumArAchArya swamy and many others. Full time sEvaka/servitor of SrIvaishNava sampradhAyam. Engaged in translating our AzhwArs/AchAryas works in Simple thamizh and English, and coordinating the translation effort in many other languages. Also engaged in teaching dhivyaprabandham, sthOthrams, bhagavath gIthA etc and giving lectures on various SrIvaishNava sampradhAyam related topics in thamizh and English regularly. Taking care of portal, which is a humble offering to our pUrvAchAryas. is part of SrI varavaramuni sambandhi Trust ( initiatives.

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