Thursday, April 5, 2007


Today’s lecture also is on the 11th sloka and from the Thirukkannamangai temple in Tanjore district. Arjuna requests Sri Krishna for guidance. Because He is the protector as declared in the Vedas. Sri Devi sametha Sri Bhaktharaavi Perumal protects all souls and with this thought we can remain without fear. In this sacred place, there lived an Acharya called Thirukkannamangai Aandan. He lived in the 9th century and was a disciple of Sri Nathamunigal, another great Acharya of Sri Vaishnava Parampara [lineage]. There is a garden where his statue is erected. He used to serve the Divine couple in this Kshetram. The Thayar was daily performed Abhishekam [Holy Bath] with the water brought from the Dharsana Pushkarini [temple tank] and so the name Sri Abhishekavalli Thayar. Once, he saw two dogs fighting and after sometime the masters of the dogs came. When they saw their dogs were fighting, they started quarrelling among them and it became severe with each drawing swords to finish off the other. Thirukkannamangai Aandan, watching this became thoughtful. When the owners of the dogs could care so much for their dependent dogs, the truth dawned on him as to how much care will the God take on us who are all His dependents. So he surrendered at the Lord’s feet and became fearless. Exactly with that attitude Arjuna also took shelter at the Feet of Sri Krishna as evident from the 11th sloka. Deha and Atman are different entities. But who actually enjoys or suffers? We should clearly understand that the body with its organs as such does not feel the pain when one is hurt. Our bodies and other materials like trees, etc. do not possess the intelligence or gyana and only the souls are having this property. Here also, depending on the karma [performance] in the previous births, the extent of intellect varies. This is similar to the Sun’s brightness on earth varying according to the clouds covering the rays. Karma covers the intelligence of the souls and full gyana is not understood. When the clouds are cleared the full brightness of the Sun is felt and so also when karma is removed Atman’s full Gyana can be felt. We see with our eyes and hear with the ears and so on. If atman is the one that understands seeing or hearing, etc., where does the atman reside to realize these feelings? Does it reside in the eyes to realize seeing? Does it reside in the ears to feel hearing? If we are hurt at any part of the body, we feel the pain. Does it mean the soul or atman is present through out the body to feel the pain? Similarly, when one is smeared with sandalwood paste, the cool comfort is felt wherever the paste was applied. So, where is the atman to feel these pains and pleasures? We have already mentioned that soul or atman is resident as a very minute entity in the heart. So, how residing at a remote place, does a soul understands all these feelings? If we ignite a lamp at a corner the light rays reach all over the room. Similarly, the soul’s intelligence is spread all over the body. This is called dharma bhootha gyanam. We can compare the body to a mobile phone. One purchases this at Rs.2000 or pays even Rs.35, 000. As such this electronic marvel does not work and remains a mere showpiece. But if we equip it with a Rs.100 or so priced SIM card, it is activated and used. Same thing happens with a microscopic soul activating the body. Without soul this body is nothing. That is why Thondaradipodi Alwar in his collection Thirumalai tells that this body is a building with lots of holes. Thirumalai is a collection of 45 verses and it is told that ‘Thirumalai ariyadhar Thirumalai ariyadhar’. This means that a person not knowing these poems in Thirumalai will not understand Thirumal [Sriman Narayana]. If we list the properties of the soul, we can say it understands, it is minute, it is intelligent, it has no organs and enjoys [or suffers] the effect of karma. Body, on the other hand, is having the opposite properties. It does not understand, it is big, it is dumb, it has organs and it does not realize the effects of karma.


Sivananda Thirumalai said...

In the starting of the message it is mentioned that this explanation is for sloka 11. but it is for sloka14. "matra sparsastu kounteya"

Sivananda Thirumalai said...

in the previous comment i may be wrong.