Thursday, January 31, 2008


We are in the third temple in Thanjavur. We first saw Sri Neelamega Perumal, followed by Sri Manikkunram Perumal. Today's [1st February 2008] lecture is from the sannidhi of Sri Thanjaiaali Perumal in the third temple. Just to honour the words of a small boy child, the Lord appeared at dusk as Sri Narasimha from a pillar. He is called here as Sri Veerasinga Perumal, Sri Azhagiyasinga Perumal and Sri Thanjai Aaali Perumal. In a vast garbagruha, the Lord as a large icon is in the seated pose. With the right foot folded and left foot down and with both lower arms on the respective knees He is gracing the devotees. Utsava Moorthy is Sri Narayana in the standing pose. There is yet another Utsava moorthy, Who graces the devotees on various vahanams during festivals. With Sri Sridevi and Sri Bhoodevi Consorts, the Lord is gracing as appeared before Prahalada and with the rage to punish the demon Hiranyakasipu. As already mentioned, all the three forms in this Kshetram, have got transferred from places different from the present locations. The Lord here was once gracing from a place called Singapiran kulam [pond]. During ekadasi of Tamil month Aadi, the Lord is massaged in oil. Brahmotsavam is during Swati in month Chittirai. Swati is the star in which Sri Narasimha appeared. Canopy is calle Vedasundara vimanam. Pushkarini is called as Chakara theertham or Soorya pushkarini or Sri Rama theertham. This pushkarini is situated near His earlier abode Singaperumal kulam. By worshiping Him, one will definiely get the same as Sri Prahalada got. Sri Narasimha is called as Sri Yoga Narasimha and Sri Veera Narasimha. He is associated with yoga. Sri Veera Narasimha means that He killed the demon, who tortured His devotee, with such a bravery. Thirumangai Alwar has praised this Lord as 'thanjai aaliyai pon peyaron nenjam idandhanai..'. Aaali means Sri Narasimha [ AaLL = man, ari = lion, AaLari has transformed to AaLi]. Pon peyaron is Hiranyakasipu [ pon = hiranyam in Sanskrit]. With His blessings we will see 27th sloka. Slokas 27 and 28 explain the steps to reach the bliss a yogi gets. We will explain this in a sketch. Once the steps are understood, anyone interested in yoga could perform yoga. Sloka 27:

prashanta-manasam hy enam
yoginam sukham uttamam
upaiti santa-rajasam
brahma-bhutam akalmasam

"To attain the supreme bliss, the yogi, performs yoga which removes the sins, the rajo and tamo gunas are pacified and gets a serene mind leading atman to its natural quality of supreme bliss."
Here many words are in the second case of accusative in English grammar. Five characteristics are mentioned and sucha a person attains supreme bliss. We will describe the steps as per the meaning and so they will not be in the same order in which they appear in the sloka.

The yogi gets all his papas burnt, and is rid of rajo and tamo gunas, gets serene mind and so the mind thinks of atman alone, which results in atman's natural quality of supreme bliss. This is atmanubhavam. In the sloka the meaning conveyed is yogi who is after supreme bliss, gets it, when his sins are burnt, rajo and tamo qualities are got rid of and mind is pure and serene. We have to reach the first step. We choose a proper place, good seat and with all sense organs controlled, mind has to be directed on atman. That has to be done by going in its own way and by proper commands. For the time we are in yoga we have to ensure that we are not distracted by anything else. That is how Prahalada was. Every time he was subjected to a torture, his mind never drifted away from the Lord. When he was thrown into the flames, he saw the glowing fire as the hue of the Lord and so embraced it. When he was dropped in the ocean, he thought it was the abode of the Lord and searched for Him. When poison was given, he saw the Lord's dark blue colour in that. When poisonous snakes were directed to bite him, he saw them as the bed of the Lord. With such peak level in yoga he was not afraid to face any torture. None appeared as enemies for him. He tells his father Hiranyakasipu that there is nothing like friend or enemy as the Lord resides in all. How such a small boy of just 5 years old could practice yoga, when we find it is so difficult even at advanced age? We must remember Prahalada, Dhruva and others had the blessings of the Lord. But we have to take efforts. So yoginam is the first step and we have to sincerely try to practice yoga. Once we take the first step, there after He will provide all assistance to reach the final step. Because He is waiting to bless us on one pretext or other.

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