The Lord of Thanjai Mamani koil is Sri Neelamega Perumal and His Consort is Sri Senkamalavalli Thayar and today's [25th January 2008] lecture is from Her sannidhi. Convention is to first worship Sri Thayar and empowered by Her recommendation we can worship the Lord. Thirumangai Alwar says he found the Thirumantram in this divine couple in the pasuram ' empiran enthai ennudai chutram...'. Piran means He who helps. Alwar calls Him as his helper, his father, his relatives, his King and his life. He killed the demons and He is gracing in Vembulam solai. After worshiping the Lord and Sri Thayar, one's thought would be full of Them only. But after one gets into the worldly affairs, this thought would go into oblivion till one returns to this Kshetram again. Because one has come to the temple without yoga practice. When visiting temples we shoild avoid cell phones and discussing family or other matters. All these are impediments to yoga. This is what Sri Krishna has been advising that we should divert our mind from worldly matters to atman. In sloka 20 He told that by doing so the yogi gets happiness in atman. In sloka 21 He told that the atmanubhavam and the happiness arising from it is beyond the grasp of our organs and mind and it has to be realized with our intellect only. Now the 22nd sloka:
yam labdhva caparam labham
manyate nadhikam tatah
yasmin sthito na duhkhena
"Established thus, one never departs from the atman, and upon gaining this he thinks there is no greater gain and no grave danger could shake him."
Yam labhdva = he who has obtained which, aparam = different, labham = acquisition or accomplishment, tata = more than this, adhikam = more or better, na manyate = not recogonised. After attaining this, he would not regard any other as a better accomplishment. Yasmin = that in which, sthitha = remain without slipping, guruna = very great, api = even, dukhena = sorrow, na vicalyate = will not disturb. Once established in this firmly, he would not be shaken by even very grave or frightening sorrow. This is yet another greatness of atmanubhavam. Does it mean that the person, who has got this atma sukham will not do his routines like eating or going to office for employment, etc. ? No. That person would still be engaged in all the routines but he would do them not for any cheap pleasure but for the objective of atman sukham. In Srimad Ramayana, Lakshmana accompanied Sri Rama to the forests. For Lakshmana, serving Sri Rama was more important than the pleasures of Palace life. Sumitra, mother of Lakshmana, advises her son before he accompanies Sri Rama to the forests. She told to forget his mother, his father Dasaratha and his place Ayodya. She further said that henceforth Sri Sita was his mother, Sri Rama was his father and the forests were Ayodya and so he should enjoy. Can we ever imagine a mother advising her own son to go to forests and be happy? Sumitra said that she regarded Lakshmana's service to Sri Rama as most important and she said that she delivered Lakshmana only to go to forests and serve the Lord. Her priority was service to the Lord and so she considered all others as trivial. Lakshmana also says that he did not want the heaven nor the eternity, but he wanted he should be ordered by Sri Rama and he would do that with greatest happiness. Once Lakshmana got the opportunity to serve Sri Rama, then all other happiness are of no value and no physical difficulties would affect him. This is the same thing in this sloka also. We should note that Sri Krishna never said that sorrows would not be encountered by the yogi. But he would not be affected by them. None can avoid happiness and sorrow in life and by yoga we can prepare ourselves to face with courage. Just like we can not eradicate mosquitos but make ourselves ready to reduce bites. Kulasekara Alwar prays in his Mukunda Mala, that he did not mind his presence anywhere be it naraka even, but he should never forget the Lotus feet of the Lord. He feels that the thought of Him is the most important and all others did not matter. Guha also regarded his association with Sri Rama just for one day as the greatest acquisition and he would not mind any othere suffering.