Tuesday, July 10, 2007


We are now in the Thiruppulingudi Kshetram. This is the domain of Lord Bhoomi Palan. In a dispute, Bhoodevi came away from Vaikuntam to this place and the Lord came here to pacify her and so the Lord is known as Bhoopalan or Bhoomipalan. The Lord here is in reclining posture and the Moolavar Icon is big. From His Navel sprouts a lotus flower with a long stem and in the flower is seated four-faced Brahma. From the entrance of the Sanctum sanctorum [Garbha Gruham] one cannot see the entire icon of the Lord and the feet are not visible. Since Sridevi and Bhoodevi are seated at the Lord’s feet, a peeping window has been arranged at the side of the prakaram [corridor] so that devotees as they come around the corridors in clockwise [prathikshanam], can have a view of the Lord’s feet. This is a unique feature in this temple. Once Swami Ramanuja visited this place and after that he wanted to visit Alwarthirunagari. The temple Archaka’s daughter was drying paddy in the street. Swami Ramanuja enquired her whether she knew where Alwarthirunagari was. She replied that it was very nearby, at a hearing distance only. Surprised Swami Ramanuja asked her was that so near? Pat came her reply. ‘Don’t you know Thiruvaimozhi? Nammalwar has said that he is at hearing distance only from this temple’. Hearing this Swami Ramanuja was awe struck at the knowledge of the girl and fainted.

kotuvinaippataigaL vallaiyaay* amarark_ku_itar_keta, achurargatkitar_chey*
katuvinai_nanchE! ennutai_amuthE* kalivayal thiruppuLiNGkutiyaay*
vadiviNaiyillaa malarmakaL* maRRai_nilamakaL pitikkummelladiyai*
kotuvinaiyEnum pitikkanNeeorunNaaL* koovuthalvaruthal cheyyaayE.        9.2.10
10. Oh Lord! You are able to take Your weapons immediately for the sake of Your
BhakthAs. You are the One who kills the asurAs to protect Devas! You are the one
who is like the poison for asurAs! You are so gracefully reclining at ThiruppuLingudi
. The unmatched, peerless, most merciful Periya Piraatti and BhUmi piraatti gently
squeeze and massage Your Beautiful tender ankles and Feet. Like them, I, the
incorrigible sinner, mahA paavi too, am longing to massage/squeeze Your Lotus Feet.
Hence, Please take me at Your place to do such kaimkaraym for You. If You do not wish
to take me, please come here at least in front of me to enable me todo that.]

From such a renowned place we are to see the last sloka of 2nd Chapter.

esa brahmi sthitih partha
nainam prapya vimuhyati
sthitvasyam anta-kale ’pi
brahma-nirvanam rcchati

"this will reach bramham, oh! Partha, after which there is no bewilderment. This should be practiced at least in the final phase of life and attain the pure happiness of bramham."

Esa sthithi – this state, brahmi- will get us brahmi. At least in the antha kale-final phase of life, should remain in this state. Then it would beget very high reward. Sri Krishna says this state- which state? Here we should interpret to indicate the essence of 2nd Chapter –Karma Yoga. It was started that Arjuna should realize the eternity of atman and should uphold his dharma of protecting his people and fight. It is not just Karma yoga but asanga Karma yoga. That is unattached, without the feeling ‘I did’ or ‘mine’ and without a desire in the result. Bramhi means it would get brahmam, which can mean it would enable reaching the abode of Sriman Narayana, that is Vaikuntam. Or, it could mean it would enable to get atman sakshatkaram or atman darshan. We have already mentioned that from 2nd to 6th Chapters, Gita deals with Atman only. From 7th to 9th chapters it would deal with attaining Paramatman. So in the Chapters 2 to 6, it will not be improper if we interpret Brahman to mean atman. This way we first understand atman well before understanding God. Therefore esa sthithi- this stage of Karma yoga is capable of getting atman darshan. In the second line, yenam- whoever, prapya- attains [atman darshan], na vimuhyati- will never get confused or will never grieve. Earlier we have seen that atman darshan would banish all miseries and worries. In the third line, asyam- in this Karma yoga, anta kalepi- at least in the final years or phase of life of a person, sthithva- do Karma yoga. In the last line, nirvanam- unalloyed by miseries and so pure happiness, rcchati- reaches, brahmam-the atman darshan or Moksham. With this Sri Krishna concludes. He advises Arjuna to stay in asanga Karma yoga that would get him atman sakshatkaram. Once that state is reached, there is no room for confusion or worries. Normally, this realization should have come up in youth time. Even if the person has become old, let him not think that Karma yoga is impossibleto practice. Even in the final phase of life, Karma yoga can be practiced and attain the eternal bliss. So we have to understand from this sloka that even if we did not realize the merits of Karma yoga all these years, it is not late to start even in the final phase of life. We can involve ourselves, even at the ripe old age, in selfless service to others, society, country or world. We should dedicate such activities as service to God. Any work we do as long as it is not self-centered and without ego and it is within the accepted boundaries of shastra, can be regarded as Karma yoga. We should get that yearning for Karma yoga at least in our old age and try to reach a little of the stitha prajna state mentiond by Sri Krishna. We should try earnestly. By practicing if we are able to achieve something it would give us that happiness. Our elders have toiled to make these methods available for us and so we should try to practice them. Karma yoga is not to be performed in a secluded jungle leaving all our near and dear ones. In fact it was Arjuna who said he would go to forests and do meditation and it was Sri Krishna Who prevented him from that and asked him to practice Karma yoga in his routine work. So our daily life is our playground and in that only we have to overcome all our challenges by practicing Karma yoga. Sri Krishna is always there to help us and we need not bother about victory or defeat in our endeavors. If we view life as an ocean of distress only, we will only get mental depression. Some regard life as challenge. The difficulty here is that since it is taken as challenge, there will be always the urge to be victorious. This will develop egoism and all our works will be self-centered. But we have to regard life as an opportunity and practice Karma yoga incessantly and do good for all and this universe. This is the essence of the 2nd Chapter.

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