Thursday, February 28, 2008


The Lord of Kapisthalam is known as Sri Gajendra Varadha. Legend says Gajendra Moksham took place somewhere in the North near Trikoota hills. But Hanuman wanted the Gajendra Moksham incident to reenacted here. Actual Gajendta Moksham took place in Krutha yug and Hanuman was in Thretha yug. Even after Sri Rama left for His abode Vaikuntam, and even now, Hanuman is in this world only. He is constantly chanting the name of Sri Rama. Such an Anjaneya thought that the Lord, Who removed the sufferings of Sri Sita, also saved the elephant Gajendra, should give a darshan of the Lord as He appeared to Gajendra. Hanuman came here and performed thapas- meditation- to fulfill his desire. Here we can see Hanuman praying and near him is the Lord in the standing pose. Also we can see the Gajendra Moksha episode in idol form. The Lord hurriedly came flying on Garuda, and saved the elephant from the clutches of the crocodile. Even children know this story. Once Huhu, a gandharva - celestial being- was cursed by a sage to be born as a crocodile. There was a King Indradyumna, who was practicing yoga. One day when sage Durvasa came, he did not notice and Durvasa got angry at the indifference of the King. He cursed the King to be born as an elephant. This elephant - Gajendra- came near the pond where the crocodile was living. The elephant entered the pond to pluck a lotus flower and offer it to the Lord. Crocodile caught the elephant's leg with its teeth and elephant could not escape. Since as King Indradyumna, he was practicing yoga and worshiping the Lord, that character continued in this birth, as elephant, also and so he wanted to worship the Lord. That is why it is customary to denote Gajendra also as Alwar. Similarly, Prahalada and Vibheeshana also are addressed as Alwars. From this it is clear that we are praised for our bhakti or devotion only, and our birth status is immaterial. This also proves what we have been seeing in Gita, that even if the yoga is discontinued, the person gets another noble birth to pursue his yoga and reach destination. Indradymna also continues his bhakti as an elephant. When the crocodile tried to drag the elephant into the water, elephant tried its strength to escape, but in vain. After a long time when the elephant realized it was losing, it cried for help of the Lord. It cried 'akila karanaya, adbuta karanaya, nishkaranaya' - Root Cause of the entire Universe, none as the cause for Self, wonderful Cause and the Originator for everything - Adimoolam. The Lord here is also named Sri Adimmola Perumal. The Lord came running to save and this scene was reenacted for the benefit of Hanuman. Similarly, this scene was enacted for the benefit of sage Parasara, whose idol also can be seen here. We will now see the last -47th- sloka of Chapter 6:

yoginam api sarvesam
shraddhavan bhajate yo mam
sa me yuktatamo matah

"And of all yogis, and all others, he who directs his mind in Me and sincerely worship Me, is the best. That is My opinion."

This is a very important sloka. It is a deviation from the path Sri Krishna telling Arjuna. The destination is changed now. We have to take a decision to follow which direction as two routes branch off from here. Till now Sri Krishna was telling about the greatness of atman sakshatkaram. Once we reach that we have no more body, no more rebirths, no karmas and so no consequent happiness and sorrow, and all these are surely, very noble. This is called atman prapti or Kaivalyam. We have seen the path to that destination only all these slokas. Arjuna thought that reaching atman prapti is the ultimate goal. Before he reached that conclusion, Sri Krishna changes the course as in a railway track, the points-man operates a lever to change the track for trains to move. In complete Chapters 2, 3, 4 and 5, and upto sloka 46 in Chapter 6, Sri Krishna was directing Arjuna on a route and now from this sloka He changes the route and destination would be Himself. Of course, till now the path for reaching Kaivalyam and reaching Sri Krishna is common. Yoginam api = better than the yogi described earlier, sarvesham [api] = [ and so better than ] all others like the thapasvi, gyani and those who perform only karma, mad-gate = towards Me [Sri Krishna], antaratmana = mind, shraddhavan = with desire [to reach Sri Krishna], sa = such a person, bhajate yo mam = devoting to Myself [Sri Krishna], yuktatama = best, matah = is [Sri Krishna's] opinon. He now talks of three categories of persons and grade them. Earlier we saw those who meditate for inferior results like reaching heaven or extencding life, etc.; similarly those who are intellectuals , but knowledge is about worldly matters; and those, who perform karma for inferior results - all these people are good. But the yogi who does meditation, who has knowledge about atman and who does karma for atman sakshatkaram, is better. But, this person mentioned in this sloka, who does all these meditation, knowledge and karma, for reaching Sri Krishna, is the best. Yukta, yukta tara and yukta tama to put it in Sanskrit. So performing everything to reach the Paramatman is yuktatama. Yoginam also indicates all the four types mentioned in slokas 29, 30, 31 and 32. This person dedicating himself to Sri Krishna surpasses all of them. We nave to discuss more in this sloka and we will see it in the coming days.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008


We are in the Kshetram Kapisthalam. Around this place on the North Kollidam river and on the South, Kaveri river flow. To reach this place, we can come to Thanjavur and from there to Papanasam. This place is very near to Papanasam. Though it is just 2 miles from Papanasam, we have to cross four rivers. The Lord graces in the reclining pose as Sri Krishna. This place is called Kapisthalam in Sanskrit and Kavithalam in Tamil. Many Kavis [poets] lived and so this could have got the name Kavithalam. Or, kapi means monkey in Sanskrit. But we can not notice any monkeys in this place. There is a sannidhi for Anjaneya. Once, he had a peculiar desire to see the Lord as He appeared to Gajendra. So once he came to this place and after a bath in Gajendra pushkarini, meditated on the Lord. The Lord appeared before him, seated on His vahanam Garuda. This also could be a reason for the name of this place. This is one of the Five Sri Krisjhna Kshetrams. Slokas 37, 38 and 39 were the query of Arjuna. Will a person practicing yoga, if he discontinues, be shattered and lost like the cloud piece broken by wind? Sri Krishna in reply to this question assured in slokas 40 to 45, that person discontinuing will never be ruined like that nor his efforts would go waste. He would enjoy the pleasures of this world as well as atman prapti. Now in the 46th sloka, Sri Krishna compares the yogi with some others and gives His opinion. This yogi is superior to those by the objective he has chosen to practice yoga. Sloka 46:

tapasvibhyo ’dhiko yogi
jnanibhyo ’pi mato ’dhikah
karmibhyas cadhiko yogi
tasmad yogi bhavarjuna

"A yogi is greater than the ascetic, greater than the empiricist and greater than the fruitive worker. Therefore, O Arjuna, in all circumstances, be a yogi."

Arjuna = Arjuna!, bhava = be an yogi [ practice yoga], tasmad = therefore. Because He is going to list persons and certify that the yogi is much superior to them, and so Arjuna also should practice yoga. Arjuna means white and which symbolizes satva quality, Sri Krishna advices Arjuna to follow this noble quality. Yogi is superior to Tapasvi = meditating persons, jnani = intellectuals and karmibhyas = those who perform duty . Yogi = the person we have been talking about, who has atman anubhavam as the only objective, detached from results of the duties he is performing and meditating on atman, viewing all equally, such a person is superior to a tapasvi or gyani or karmibhyas. But we normally regard tapasvis very high? Srimad Ramayanam starts with the sloka tapasyad.. and there Valmiki mentions Narada as a great tapasvi. Here Sri Krishna is not ridiculing such thapasvis, but talks of those whose objectives are not sublime or for noble causes. Many persons cause sufferings to themselves in the name of thapas. Alwar says these - like remaining without food for many days, standing in scorching sunlight, etc. - are unnecessary. There were sages and rishis wno performed such severe thapas, but we should know what was their objective. Ravana and Hiranyakasipu also performed such severe thapas. But what were their objectives? They wanted to rule the entire world and improve their strength. How such people can be regarded as better than a yogi? Thapas for cheap results is to be avoided. Thiruvarangathu Amudanar, a disciple of Swami Ramanuja says in his Ramanuja Nootrandai, one of the Nalayira Divya Prabhandam, not to perform thapas, the power of which could dry the oceans and destroy forests, etc. There are persons who perform thapas to injure others and yet others are there, who want to extend their longevity or amass more wealth. Amudanar says he does not want to join either of these groups. But this yogi stands apart on a very high plane by having atman sakshatkaram as the only objective. Next, Sri Krishna talks of intellectuals. These are persons who know so many things in life, but not about atman. What is the use of knowing all those? Duryodana had 99 brothers, what is the use in remembering those names? It is more important to know the essence of Mahabharatha. Knowing worldly matters is important to decide how low they are and concentrate on knowledge about atman and Paramatman. Knowledge other than atman and Paramatman is waste and so He regards yogi better than these gyanis or intellectuals. Karmibhya means those who do karmas regularly. Swami Ramanuja says, these persons perform many karmas in line with shastras, like aswamedham, vajapeyam, etc. Though they are very good karmas, they do not take the person anywhere nearer to atman. So any karma for which the objective is not atman sakshatkaram, is to be avoided. Therefore, a yogi is regarded as superior to a thapasvi or gyani or one who performs rituals for inferior results, by Sri Krishna. Here we may have a doubt, whether the yogi praised by Sri Krishna, should he do thapas? Should he have worldly knowledge? Should he do rituals? Actually, this yogi does all the three, but in all, his objective is atman sakshatkaram and Paramatman, only.

Location can be seen in

Tuesday, February 26, 2008


[Today (27th February 2008) the cable transmission was not there and it resumed only a couple of minutes before the program ended. The translation is therefore limited to what was heard only]

prayatnad yatamanas tu
yogi samshuddha-kilbisah
tato yati param gatim

"And when the yogi engages himself with sincere endeavor in making further progress, being washed of all contaminations, then ultimately, achieving perfection after many, many births of practice, he attains the supreme goal."

He attains param gathim, which means he attains atman prapti or atman anubhavam [experience]. Till this 45th sloka, Sri Krishna has been talking of the same objective- atman anubhavam. In the Second Chapter He told that atman was different from body, mind and sense organs, and was superior to all these. Atman takes various bodies in various births, and we should realize atman is different from the bodies it resided. We develop eagerness o see atman and have its experience and that has been the ultimate objective or destination so far. To reach that destination we tried to understand the ways. We first understood that atman was different from body and was superior to body. With that knowledge we practiced Karma yoga. This has to be done with detachment or not aspiring for any cheap and inferior desires. This is vairagyam. Atman sakshatkaram alone should be the objective. Karma yoga was described as one of those 14 actions, like, pilgrimage, pranayamam, meditation [thapas], performing yagna, performing pooja to an idol, etc. Every person has certain prescribed duties and performing them is Karma yoga. We can not include in these our professional works. All actions as stated by Sri Krishna or which are in agreement with shastras, come under Karma yoga. Only performing Karma yoga will not get atman sakshatkaram. Its last phase of yoga is necessary. This was explained in the Sixth Chapter. The place for yoga, how we are to sit and do yoga, what we should think and concentration, were all explained. Practicing this continuously, yoga matures and atman sakshatkaram is reached. Now, in the last few slokas, we observed that while doing yoga if a person slips from continuation, he need not be disheartened. He will get another birth in a noble family which would be conducive to practice yoga. There he will do yoga, control the organs and mind and with the power of the yoga all his sins would be annihilated, and he would reach param gathim or the supreme stage. That is atman prapti. We should know that whatever Sri Krishna told in all the slokas till now, is not the best, which is yet to be revealed. He is going to tell about bhakti and raise the destination to a higher level. We will pray in this Kshetram of Kapisthalam and proceed further.

Monday, February 25, 2008


Sri Krishna has extracted Gita as milk from Upanishads, for us to drink. We have been enjoying this milk by understanding one sloka everyday. Normally, milk is not administered as medicine for any sickness;but here, Gita as milk, cures our disease of samsaram and this medicine is sweet too. Thirumangai Alwar composed ten pasurams on this Kshertram, Thirukkoodalur and in conclusion says, by chanting these ten hymns, all sins will be washed away. Swami Periavacnan Pillai, who wrote commentary for these hymns says that by drinking milk sickness will be cured. Milk is sweet, while normally medicines are bitter. To cure the disease of sins, by reading these pasurams, which are sweet like milk, one gets cured. One need not undertake the bitter and difficult repentance rites to remove the effects of sins. Alwar says that the Lord here protected the entire Universe with huge oceans, mountains and others, in His stomach, during pralayam, the great deluge. After the pralayam was over, He ejected all the Universe from His stomach and thus He protects all. Aptly, He is called Sri Jagatrakshaka. The temple here was in a dilapidated condition some five years back and has been renovated to some extent. Not many pilgrims visit this temple and so income is insufficient. But all should make it a point to visit and get the blessings of the Lord. H.H. Sriman Thridhandi Jeer took interest to renovate this temple in 2003. We should all visit this temple in great numbers. We will now see the 44th sloka, second half:
jijnasur api yogasya

"Such an inquisitive eagerness to practice yoga would cross the world."
Sri Krishna has been answering Arjuna's query. Earlier we saw two categories of persons: 1. Person who has started yoga but discontinued. 2. Person who has considerable experience in yoga and is about to get atman sakshatkaram, when he discontinues. In this part of sloka 44, Sri Krishna tells of a third type of person. It is like a student writing an exam. In the beginning he was told that he would be given marks only if he had arrived at answer. Then, he was told that his approach in the question would be valued, even if he had not arrived at the end result. Now, he is told that even a desire to attempt the problem would be valued. How happy the students would be?! In sloka 41, Sri Krishna told that if a person discontinues yoga in the initial stage itself, he is made to be born again in such a family that he could start the yoga again from the initial stage where he discontinued. In sloka 42, He talked of another person who discontinued yoga at a very advanced stage. He also, after enjoying the inferior pleasures he desired, is made to be reborn in a family of yogis and others who would induce him to restart the yoga from the advanced stage, where he discontinued in his earlier birth. In sloka 43 and part of sloka 44, He clarified that this type of resuming yoga from the stage discontinued in the earlier birth was possible with His blessings. Now, He says that a person need not have gone to the advanced stage in yoga nor he need to have started yoga. Yogasya = about yoga, jignasur api = even a desire [ to practice], shabda brahmam = this world, ativartate = is crossed. To get atman sakshatkaram one should have practiced yoga. For this the yoga sadhanam [implements] vairagyam and abhyasam are needed. He should know the upaya or method of Karma yoga. To start Karma yoga, one should have atman gyana or knowledge. Sri Krishna relaxes this rule to such an extent to induce people to practice yoga. Here is a person, who has not even attempted to practice yoga, but after hearing the greatness of yoga, has a mere desire to practice. That is all. Such a person also is able to cross this samsaram of this world. Here, in Tatparya Chandrika, Swami Vedanta Desika says that mere knowledge about yoga is not enough to cross this samsaram. But, what is meant is a desire to practice yoga. Shabda means word. Everything in this Universe has a name and we call by that to identify. So every word describes about the Universe and so shabda indicates Universe. Brahmam means very large. So shabda brahmam means the entire Universe and everything contained in that. By crossing this means, he gets atman sakshatkaram and so he is not reborn again. Just as in the cases of the other two types of persons, where they would be reborn in such a family to resume the yoga from where they had discontinued, here also, this person would be in a family to start yoga and achieve the results. So, any person, discontinuing yoga anywhere from the concept stage to almost final stage, is assured of atman sakshatkaram. All these replies have emanated from the query of Arjuna. He wanted to know what was the fate of a person, who after abandoning all desires for inferior pleasures, started yoga but discontinued? Will he be shattered and be lost like the piece of cloud lost in wind? Sri Krishna assures that anyone who starts such auspicious [kalyana] actions like yoga would never lose anything. He would accomplish yoga he had desired to practice. This is called yoga siddhi. We should thank Sri Jagatrakshaka Perumal and Sri Padmasani Thayar, and the devotees who are serving here, for exposition of this portion of Gita. We should enthuse the devotees of this Kshetram by visiting this temple in large numbers.

Sunday, February 24, 2008


All the vahanams [different vehicles used during utsavam or festivals] of this temple are in the hall near the sannidhi of Sri Padmasani Thayar. Vahanams such as Adisesha, Soorya prabha, Garuda, Hanumantha, etc. are all kept. All these vahanams are serving the Lord with enthusiasm and continuously. When the Nityasuris such as Adisesha are born in this world, their memories of their positions in Vaikuntam do not fade. Adisesha was born as Lakshmana and in that role also he did not forget his service to the Lord and all the fourteen years when Sri Rama was in exile in forests, he served Him. His earlier role as Adisesha was still fresh in his memory and so he never allowed others to do the service to the Lord. Similarly, in our case also certain things get imprinted in our karma and that continues whatever births we take. We can observe this feature in great persons. Adisesha, when born as Balarama in Dwapara yug, continued his service. Again in Kali yug he was born as Swami Ramanuja and served the Lord. This type of memories or certain actions continuing is called vasanai. We remember all even after a good sleep. Whatever happened before going to sleep, are all fresh in mind after sleep also. This we have to remember and see sloka 43. In the last slokas Sri Krishna told that person, who discontinues a yoga sincerely commenced, after fulfilling his desires, is born in a family so that he is able to restart the yoga from where he discontinued in the previous birth. Arjuna is puzzled as to how this is possible and who would be able to help this person to start from where he had discontinued in his previous birth. Sloka 43 is reply to this doubt:

tatra tam buddhi-samyogam
labhate paurva-dehikam
yatate ca tato bhuyah
samsiddhau kuru-nandana

"On taking such a birth, he revives the divine consciousness of his previous life, and he again tries to make further progress in order to achieve complete success, O son of Kuru."

Kuru nandana = son of Kuru dynasty [Arjuna], paurva dehikam = in the past body's [ previous birth], buddhi samyogam = attachment of knowledge, labhate = gets back. In the last birth, this person performed yoga; but discontinued, as he was distracted by some inferior desires. That yoga, however short he had performed, had power, because he practiced it as it was the advice of the Lord. This power got him the inferior desires he wanted and after fulfilling that desire, got him a birth in a family, where the atmosphere was conducive to restart the yoga, he had discontinued in the earlier birth. This is like we remember all those which happened before we went to bed. Tatra tam = =[in this birth where he is born after enjoying all desires he wanted while doing yoga in the last birth, he gets the same ] that knowledge in this body. Bhuya = again, yataeta ca = he restarts. The imprints of the last birth are all available now in the present birth, and he is able to start yoga again. To get back those imprints, what is needed is something to trigger in the mind. This triggering happens by his birth in a noble family where there are yogis and so a conducive atmosphere is created. Samsiddhau = in order to practice yoga. In the family where he is reborn, people are available to advice him properly to restart yoga. It is like a person who knew bicycling, and had discontinued for, say, 15 years. When he wants to ride bicycle after that gap, all he needs is a word of encouragement only and he need not go through the entire process of learning to drive. This is because that learning is already imprinted in him and the encouragement only triggered. Contrarily, if there is discouragement, then this person might not attempt to drive the bicycle. Similarly, this person gets encouragement from a family where he is reborn, to practice yoga. Being born in such families he is able to observe their practices and so is able to grasp and restart. As a continuation of this sloka is the first half of sloka 44 and so we will see that also:

purvabhyasena tenaiva
hriyate hy avaso ’pi sah

"By virtue of the divine consciousness of his previous life, he automatically becomes attracted to the yogic principles"

Sa = that yogi, who had discontinued the yoga in his last birth and is reborn in the family where yoga practicing is encouraged, tenaiva = that, purvabhyasena = practice followed in previous birth, avesa'pi= [even if he does not show inclination] spontaneously, hriyate = is dragged into [yoga]. Purvabhyasena can mean by the same interest or by the same vairagya or by the same knowledge of atman or by the same karma yoga or by the same interest with which the yoga was practiced, in the previous birth. We also observe this, when we are dragged into certain activities almost involuntarily. It is like a darshan of the Lord in Thirumala. Our effort is only to go to the queue complex, and afterwards automatically we are pushed and pulled and made to have a darshan of the Lord and we come out with prasadam in our hands! The earlier birth vasanai would drag him into yoga in this birth and he would complete yoga and have atman sakshatkaram. This can be seen in the legend of Jatabharatha. He was practicing yoga, but suddenly developed attachment to a young deer and while dying, his mind was full of deer only. He was born as a deer. But after this deer died, he was born as a yogi and continued his yoga. He did not have any more births after he was born as a deer, and immediately in the next birth he was able to start yoga. All these imprints are activated because of the blessings of the Lord.

Thursday, February 21, 2008


Lakshmyasaharishikesa:devya karunyaroopaya
This sloka tells the greatness of Sri Mahalakshmi. The Lord protects us always along with His Consort Sri MahaLakshmi. Here, in Thirukkoodalur, the Lord is Sri Jagat Rakshaka Perumal. Rakshaka means protection and so the Lord here does rakshaka with His Consort. What is Her role in this protection? To protect anyone, the Lord should have mercy and compassion? Though these qualities are in the Lord, He is angry with us for the infinite sins we have committed in infinite births. Unless this anger is reduced or removed we will not be able to benefit from His other noble qualities such as compassion, affection, etc. Here, the role of Sri MahaLakshmi comes and She skims His anger on us and His other qualities favourable to us are revealed. Now, He is able to forgive us and takes us by His side. This has become possible only because of Sri MahaLakshmi acting as our Mother. Today's [22nd February 2008] lecture is at the sannidhi of Sri Padmasani Thayar [Moolavar] and Sri Pushpavalli Thayar [Utsavar]. She is seated on lotus carrying lotus, wearing lotus garland and with lotus like eyes She graces as the most intimate to the Lord. She allays our fears, and assures His mercy by Her recommendation. She never parts with Him, even for a second. She remains on the Lord's chest as Srivatsam. Praying for Her blessings we will move on to the sloka 42. Sri Krishna's reply is in sloka 40 and sloka 41. In sloka 40, He promised that if with the kalyana [auspicious] intention of following the Lord's words, one started yoga, one would never go to hell. In slokas 41 and 42 He describes the yogi, gets the inferior pleasures as desired by him and also is reborn to continue yoga. In sloka 41, He talked of a person who has sincerely tried to practice yoga and discontinued even before he has sufficient experience in yoga. In that initial stage itself he aspires for some inferior pleasures like heaven, he gets such happiness for a long time till he is satisfied. Then, he is made to be born in a family where the surroundings are conducive to simulate him again in yoga and he continues from where he had discontinued in his previous birth. Now, in the sloka 42, Sri Krishna talks of another person who has also started yoga and has considerable experience, almost maturing to get atman sakshatkaram. If this person also slips from yoga, what is his fate is described in Sloka 42:

atha va yoginam eva
kule bhavati dhimatam
etad dhi durlabhataram
loke janma yad idrsam

"Or [if unsuccessful after long practice of yoga] he takes his birth in a family of transcendentalists who are surely great in wisdom. Certainly, such a birth is rare in this world."

This type of rebirth is very rare and not much known in the world, Sri Krishna tells. This type of birth He arranges for this person. Athava = otherwise, [ this person is different from the one mentioned in sloka 41]. So here He talks of a person who has slipped from yoga after considerable experience in it. Yoginam eva dhimatam = with full experience in yoga and capable of preaching others to successfully practice, kule bhavati = such a person's family he is reborn. [in some texts instead of the word bhavati, mahati si found. In that case we have to draw the meaning as he is reborn in great families with experience in yoga]. This person had discontinued yoga at a ripe stage, and so when he is reborn, the Lord helps him to be born in such a family, which has sufficient experience in yoga, so that it becomes easier to start the yoga from where he had discontinued in the last birth, and complete to have atman sakshatkaram. Yad idrsam janma= such a rebirth, loke = in this world , etad dhi durlabhataram = is not a very rare occurance? The rebirths mentioned in slokas 41 and 42 are very rare to be seen in this world. Because to be born in such families one should have accumulated so much of punya or effect of good deeds in the previous births. It is like for example, a man after a great struggle has built an industrial empire of multi billion dollars. A son born to him, becomes instantly billionaire and is the propreitor of the industry. This is mere materialistic wealth. Swami Alavandar says that he does not aspire to be born as Brahma or Indra, but wants to be born as an insect or worm in the house of a family who serve the Lord. So, we should be born in a family where devotion [bhakti] is predominant. Swami Azhagiya Manavala Perumal Nayanar in his Acharya Hrudayam says, it is not important if one is born in upper society, but where one's bhakti would flourish is important. It is said that even being a mud wall in Gokulam is sufficient to have devotion to the Lord, as Gokulam was fortunate to have been pressed by His feet. We may be born as anything, but we should pray for developing bhakti in that birth. Here, this person had practiced yoga considerably and so when he slipped, he enjoyed in another loka and was reborn. While being reborn, he is destined to be born in a family ahere the yoga practicing is to such an advanced stage as to teach others. Such rebirths are very rare. So slippage in yoga does not become a great disadvantage. We have to thus remember that as long as we obey His words, the Lord would take full responsibility to ensure that we get all advantages and gain atman sakshatkaram.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008


In the pasuram pillaiuyirai, Thirumangai Alwar says Sri Jagatrakshaka Perumal, as Sri Krishna, stole milk, curd and butter; and by doing so He stole the heart of Alwar also! As a small Boy of Gokulam, the Lord has entered into the mind of Alwar. By stealing, instead of being punished, He steals the hearts of His devotees. Punishment is for the devotees like the Alwar, since Alwar's mind is no longer with him; he is not able to listen to others and so others abuse him for his indifference! Such a Thief is here as Sri Jagatrakshaka. Here the Lord alone is not stealing, even the birds like cranes, steal fish in the paddy fields full of water. Long ago, the temple was away from the present location and was just on the banks of Kaveri, in a place, now called Koodalur. Once there was a great deluge and the temple was wrecked and the idols were washed away by the river. The idol was captured by some fishermen. Rani [queen] Mangamma was ruling Madurai at that time and the Lord appeared in her dreams and wanted her to build a new temple for Him and install the idol with the fishermen. When the queen came in search of this place, one fisherman leader by name Rama, told her that the Lord had appeared in his dream also and gave the idol to the queen. When they were all searching for a suitable place for the temple, an oracle was heard and the present place was chosen and temple was built. Stone testimonies and other evidences are reported to be available in Tanjore. Though Sri Krishna is accused by others for stealing, we should remember that the entire Universe is His and so when He takes anything, it is His property; and, it is we who steal His property and try to conceal. Now we see sloka 41:

prapya punya-kritam lokan
usitva sasvatih samah
sucinam srimatam gehe
yoga-bhrasto ’bhijayate

"The unsuccessful yogi, after many, many years of enjoyment on the planets of the pious living entities, is born into a family of righteous people,with good intentions."

From this sloka Sri Krishna gives assurance of His support to the person, who has started yoga sincerely, in this life as well as in his ensuing births. A person has started yoga in all sincerity. Due to pull of desire in others like the pleasures in heaven or in Chandra loka or Kubera loka, he discontinues yoga and aspires for these inferior pleasures. At the right time, here after death of the person, the Lord ensures the person attains the pleasures he wanted. Punya kritam lokan = the worlds destined for those who have done punya, prapya = attains. This person is dispatched to the loka reserved for those who have done great punya; even though this person might not have performed so much punya to deserve that loka, but as he has begun yoga sincerely, he is granted that position. Sasvata sama = for long time, usitva = live there. Normally, for those who have done punya, these loka might be available for living till the punya account has balance and after exhausting all punya, all those persons are sent back to be born as whatever their karma is destined. But, this person, who has started the yoga and discontinued half way, is sent to these loka, reserved for all those who have performed great deeds. Not only that. This person can spend time for much, much longer times. Normally, it is human nature to long for something we do not have. As long as that is not had, this longing for that may be hurting us. But, once we get that and we enjoy its possession, then we will certainly feel that why we bothered the Lord for this small and inferior pleasure. We will then feel that we should continue to practice yoga and be loyal to the Lord. Detachment will creep in at that time and we will start thinking these inferior pleasures are enough. He will then be made to be born in a place where the surroundings will be conducive to restart the yoga from the point where he had discontinued in the previous birth. Yoga brashta = he who has slipped from or discontinued yoga, abhijayate = is well born in, sucinam = well intentioned, srimatham = of good character, gehe = houses. So this person, who sincerely started yoga, but has discontinued for variety of reasons, gets the desired pleasures, of inferior nature, in this or other lokas meant for noble souls, and after he is satisfied and says enough, he is made to be born in a house of families of good character and with good intentions [ to stimulate this person again in yoga]. The sloka says that this person is born in such families; but actually, it is the Lord, Who decides this course of destiny. Born in such families, this person is able to continue yoga from where he discontinued in his previous birth.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008


We are at the sannidhi of Sri Jagatrakshaka Perumal, today [20th February 2008]. Thirumangai Alwar, the last of Alwars, has mentioned this Kshetram in ten poems, in the 5th century, 2nd decade of his Periya Thirumozhi. He describes the beauty of the women of this place. They also had very good mind. The flowers used by them on their heads, spread fragrance for the entire place. In the pasuram [5.2.1] he calls this place as Vendhanur. Vendhan in Tamil means king. Here the King is Sri Krishna and it is His place. It seems He Himself was not aware of the greatness of His place [Thirukkoodalur]. Because, ignorant of His Royal greatness, He acted as a mere messenger for the Pandavas! The Utsavar is called Sri Jagatrakshaka and Moolavar is called Sri Vaiyamkatha Perumal. Utsavar has Discus and Conch in the upper two arms. He is placing the lower left arm on His knees, indicating that for those who surrender unto Him, their sins would evaporate and reduce to knee deep only. Sri Maha Lakshmi is gracing as Sri Padmasani, Moolavar and as Sri Pushpavalli, Utsavar. Sri Andal also has a sannidhi here. With their blessings let us see what reply Sri Krishna gives to Arjuna. Sloka 40:

sri-bhagavan uvaca
partha naiveha namutra
vinasas tasya vidyate
na hi kalyana-krt kascid
durgatim tata gacchati

"The Supreme Personality of Godhead said: Son of Pritha, a transcendentalist engaged in auspicious activities does not meet with destruction either in this world or in the spiritual world; one who does good, My friend, is never overcome by evil."

The Lord addresses Arjuna as thatha, which means father in Sanskrit. But here it shows affection and closeness, just as we address in Tamil Appa! our close relatives. He says never he would get lost into miseries or sufferings. The action [yoga] Arjuna started is because it was good and because it was told by the Lord, and so this action is auspicious [kalyana krit]. Such auspicious actions will never lead anyone to sufferings even if abandoned half way. This answers Arjuna's doubt whether by discontinuing the yoga started, due to any reason, he would not merely lose atman sakshatkaram, but as a penalty for discontinuing, be punished and sent to hell. Would Arjuna be lost like the shattered cloud piece? The Lord calls Arjuna Partha; that is His aunt Pritha's son, indicating close relationship. He wants to tell that He would never let down anyone listening to His words. He never wanted to kill Ravana or Sisupala or Hiranyakashipu. He wanted everyone to redeem themselves from miseries. Such a Person, He, would never let down His dear cousin Arjuna and would never show the path for hell. Parents, in spite of their children being wicked, would praise any small good things done. Similar quality is there in God. A sincere attempt to practice yoga, because the Lord recommended it, would be eulogised by the Lord and He would ensure that, even if the attempt is not fully carried out, the person got all benefits. This is a great promise He is making. Iha = here [ in this world], amutra = in the other world, tasya = to that person [ who has sincerely attempted yoga], vinasa = destruction, na vidyate = is never seen. He assures that this person who sincerely stated but discontinued, will never see miseries in this world or in other worlds [after death]. All this because the person listened to the Lord and was sincere in practicing yoga. Not only that. He discontinued because, say for example, he wanted to pursue to reach heaven. The Lord assures Heaven for this person. What happens after his tenure in heaven is over? Will he have to start yoga all over again from the beginning? The Lord assures again that the person could start the yoga from where he discontinued. This is again another argument from the Lord that Karma yoga is better than Gyana yoga. Karma yoga can be restarted from the discontinued position. Therefore, a person who after knowing the superiority of atman, practices yoga and discontinues for some other desires, gets these inferior pleasures as well as he is enabled to restart the yoga in the future and will attain atman sakshatkaram. This is double benefit for him. Arjuna is surprised as to how this person would get both advantages. Sri Krishna asserts that He would grant both, as the person listened to Him and regarded that as auspicious - kalyana- words. That person's faith would never betray him. We have to remember that faith in Him, would grant all we desire and the ultimate Moksham also. Kascid = anyone, kalyana krit = the action [to be performed as told by the Lord] is auspicious, durgathim = bad destiny, na gacchati = never gets. Anyone, who started yoga, because he considered it as auspicious action recommended by the Lord, would not incur harmful results. So, we have to remember that if we start an auspicious action, the Lord would guide and carry us safely and ensure the successful completion of that action. All obstacles would be removed.

Monday, February 18, 2008


The pushkarini of this temple is called Chakra Theertham, as in many temples, each having its own legend. The Chakra or Discus in the hand of the Lord is in the Prayoga [Ready for flying] style. Alwars state that all our infinite karma will be cut-off or destroyed by the Chakra. The greatness of the Chakra is in this Chakra theertham and so we can bathe or sprinkle the water on our heads, fearlessly. The canopy on the Garbha gruha -Vimanam- is called Suddha sathva vimanam. We have seen that our body and mind are having a mixture of the three qualities, viz satva, rajo and tamasa. Rajo gunam originates desire and anger, while tamo guna creates ignorance and lethargy. Satva guna makes one to have sharp knowledge and clear understanding. A sight of this Vimanam, hence, will develop satva quality in us and reduce rajo and tamo gunas. Swami Parashara Bhatta, seeing the black coating inside the Vimanam in Sri Rangam temple says that earlier the Vimanam was white, just like the hood of the Serpent Adisesha. But the dazzling black colour radiated on the Vimanam by Sri Ranganatha, it also turned black! For better vision we employ eye cream. If we can use the blackness of the Vimanam as cream for our eyes, then we will become white; that is Satva quality symbolised by white colour will increase [ Rajo and tamo are symbolised by red and black colours]. Viewing Vimanam in temple is good for us. Slokas 37, 38 and 39 are all doubts raised by Arjuna. By this sloka 39, he conclusively asserts that his doubts can be cleared only by Sri Krishna:

etan me samsayam krishna
chettum arhasy asesatah
tvad-anyah samsayasyasya
chetta na hy upapadyate

"This is my doubt, O Krishna, and I ask You to dispel it completely. But for You, no one is to be found who can destroy this doubt."

Etan = thus stated, me = my [Arjuna's], samsayam = doubt, asesata = created [in me, Arjuna], chettum = elimination, arhasy = You [Sri Krishna] are. Arjuna tells that his doubt has to be completely cleared by Sri Krishna. Tvad anya = other than You [Sri Krishna], samsayasyasya = this difficult doubt, chetta = clearing, na hy upapadyate = can not be found. Arjuna further continues that none other than Sri Krishna, he is able to find to clear his difficult doubt. This also can be considered as a surrender by Arjuna to Sri Krishna. Upanishads acclaim that by just having a darshan [sight] of the Lord, all our doubts are cleared. It says the granthi or knots in our hridaya or heart [symbolising mind] will all be loosened. Our infinite karma get destroyed. All these happen by just worshiping the Supreme God, Sriman Narayana. Arjuna is right, therefore, in asking Sri Krishna to clear all his doubts. There may be an apparent contradiction between the Upanishad saying and Gita sloka here. Upanishad says that a mere sight or darshan of the Lord will clear all doubts. Arjuna is facing the Lord here and so all his doubts should have vanished. Why then he is requesting to clear his doubt? Arjuna's doubts would have been cleared at the sight of the Lord; but then, it would not have benefited persons like us, who were not there when Gita was preached. Thondaradipodi Alwar was the eighth Alwar and has composed Thirumaalai on Sri Ranganatha, consisting of 45 pasurams. In pasuram Meyyarke meyyanagum... says his doubts are cleared by the Lord. Doubts are dangerous, especially between couples, parents and children, brothers and sisters or friends. Doubts have to be cleared then and there, else they would make the person sleepless. Sri Ranganatha cleared all Alwar's doubts, not by asking him to study Vedas or Puranas, but by a mere show of His form. Is that so easy? Yes, all the doubts will vanish as we have darshan of the Lord. Doubts arise out of the three gunas. When we seek advise from a teacher, if the teacher also has the three qualities, then how can our doubts be eradicated? Sri Krishna is the embodiment of only satva guna and so it is not surprising that Arjuna says only He could clear his doubts. Our doubts could be many like whether God exists, is atman different from body, do we accrue papa and punya by our actions? Doubts are endless. Once the doubts are cleared then we will be ready for yoga. Arjuna's doubt is about the fate of the person who has started yoga, after abandoning all other karma for worldly pleasures, but has discontinued yoga in the middle. Sri Krishna is his relative, friend and well meaning advisor. So none else can advise him without any vested interest. God is not looking for any favour from the devotee and so He would advise the best for us. In fact, He gains by clearing our doubts as that would make us to devote ourselves more to Him and His intention is we all should be near Him. That is all. By misdirecting He does not gain. So, the advise would be honest and clear.

Sunday, February 17, 2008


Today's [18th February 2008] lecture is from the sthala vriksham [temple tree]. Though gooseberry [Tamil- nellikkai] tree is the sthala vriksham, we are beneath a jack fruit [Tamil- palaa] tree, which is famous. It is a very old tree but still seen green. The fruits of these trees are well known for the difficulty and arduousness to take out the fruit and taste them. Like wise, yoga is difficult to practice and get the sweet results. In the tree in this temple, one can notice the Panchajanya conch shape on the trunk. This resembles the conch in the left arm of the Lord. Conch is associated with the sound of pranavam - OM. The Lord here has yet another name - Sri Ambareesha Varadan. Ambareesha was a King in the Ikshvaku dynasty, in which Sri Rama also was born. He lived much earlier to Sri Rama avatar. He was very much interested in yoga and was practicing it. He followed Ekadashi vratham, during which day, occurring every fortnight on the 11th phase of the Moon, he would remain without food and would be concentrating on prayer to God. On the next day he would break the fast, before the prescribed end of Dwadashi or the 12th phase of the Moon, by taking food offered to God. Fasting on Ekadashi and taking food offered to God in Dwadashi is called Ekadashi vratahm. One day on Dwadasi day sage Durvasa visited the King and at the request of the King agreed to be the guest and to take food along with King. The sage went to the river for bathing. The King waited and sage had not returned. He was in a dilemma. If he had to complete that Ekadashi vratham, he had to take food before Dwadasi was over and only a few minutes remained to do that. At the same time, it was not correct to take food without the guest. Knowing sage Durvasa for his instant anger and subsequent curse, King dared not to eat without Durvasa. The King was caught in a dharma sankatam - that is whatever he did might go against one rule or the other in shastras. So he consulted the Royal pundits and other elders and decided to take the water offered to the Lord, so that it could not be considered as food and at the same time, he would complete the Ekadasi vratham. As soon as he took the water, Durvasa came on the spot and realizing that the King had taken water, he became angry and by his power created a demon to kill Ambareesha. The King was granted the Sudarshana discus by the Lord for his protection and the discus sprang into action spontaneously and chased Durvasa after destroying the demon. In fear Durvasa ran all over and the discus would not spare him. After refusal of protection by all gods in all the worlds, Durvasa landed in Vishnu loka and surrendered to the Lord, Who owned the discus. But the Lord advised Durvasa that he should surrender to the King Ambareesha alone for redress. Durvasa came and pleaded apology at Ambareesha, who magnanimously requested Sudarshana to stay away. Thus the Lord rescued Ambareesha and He remains here as Sri Ambareesha Varada. The name Koodalur for this place is also due to the groups of devas who came to worship the Lord, and who were led by sage Nandaka [ koottam in Tamil means groups, and so kooduthal means grouping]. Thus the name Koodalur and since Sri MahaLakshmi is associated, it is called Thirukkodalur. Now the 38th sloka:

kaccin nobhaya-vibhrastas
chinnabhram iva nasyati
apratistho maha-baho
vimudho brahmanah pathi

"O mighty-armed Krishna, does not such a man, who is bewildered from the path of transcendence, fall away from both spiritual and material success and perish like a riven cloud, with no position in any sphere?"

Brahmana pathi = attaining brahmam [atman sakshatkaram], vimudha= incapable of, apratishta = abandoned karma [for inferior pleasures], where is this person's destiny? is the question Arjuna is posing to the Lord. We have to start an action after fully deliberating and after starting we should not abandon it midway, even if obstacles are encountered. Ubhaya = from these two [ atman sakshatkaram and actions for inferior pleasures], vibhrata = slipped, chinna = shattered, abhram iva = like a cloud, kaccin = anyone, na nasyati = will not he get destroyed? Anyone who has slipped from both - atman sakshatkaram and lower pleasures - will he not get destroyed just like the cloud is shattered in the sky? Let us examine why this example of cloud is brought in. We would have observed in the sky different clouds. We would have seen that sometimes, a small cloud piece in a big cloud would separate and travel to join another big cloud. This small piece of cloud travels separately and joins another cloud. But on the way if an air turbulence is there, then this small cloud piece is shattered and is lost totally. Air turbulence does not affect the bigger clouds. Visualizing this example, we have to see what Arjuna tells. We have been doing our worldly affairs and passing life. This is like the first big cloud traveling in the sky. We have been doing so many actions for cheap results like seeking heaven or acquiring more wealth, etc,. From this group, one person gets better wisdom from listening to wiser people or advise of Acharya, etc. He separates and seeks to do yoga and attain atman sakshatkaram. He is like the separated cloud piece. He practices yoga and travels to reach atman sakshatkaram, which is the other big cloud. If he reaches the other big cloud, then there is no problem and he gets atman sakshatkaram and Moksham. But, what if in the way he is caught by desires for cheaper results. This is like the air turbulence shattering the cloud piece. Arjuna wants to know, just like the cloud piece was lost because of air turbulence, will this person also get lost if while doing yoga he stops it for any reason. Nasa in the sloka means, this person, having left the usual actions for cheaper results and unable to continue yoga after doing it for some time, will he get undesirable things or will he not get what he wanted. Brahma pathi means the means to achieve atman sakshatkaram.

Thursday, February 14, 2008


The yogi is able to see himself and all others as same. His atman is identical to all other atman. Such sama darshanam was categorised in four ways. Overlooking the body and with punya and papa eradicated, atman having matured fully, he considers equal to God in some respects and all atman are identical to his atman. The Lord described four types of yogi. Swami Alawandar mentioned this as yogi chaturtha, in his Gitarta Sangraham. Arjuna raised some doubts in two slokas, that controlling mind appeared impossible for him. Agreeing with Arjuna, Sri Krishna therefore, suggested yoga sadhanam of vairagyam and abhyasam, would control mind. Repeated practice to train the mind on atman and being aware of the pitfalls in the worldly affairs and their pleasures, are the methods suggested by the Lord. Armed with these, practicing [Karma] yoga becomes possible. Now He is going to tell that, by this, yoga would be definitely possible - yoga siddhi. Arjuna gets a doubt. A person might sincerely try to practice yoga. Suppose that person is unable to complete to attain atman sakshatkaram and he slips. What would be his fate? He might not get Moksham. Since he started yoga by relinquishing all worldly desires, he has already lost them also. Therefore, what will that person achieve? Will he attain yoga siddhi? All these doubts are reflected in slokas 37,38 and 39, and Sri Krishna replies assertively that the efforts will not go waste. We have visited all the 18 Divya Desam in Pandya region. We are now in Chola region, where we have already visited Kshetrams like Srirangam, Anbil, Appakkudathan and Thiruvellarai. We are now in a kshetram Koodalur and this name suugests yoga will 'koodum' [Tamil word for possible]. The Lord here is Sri Vaiyam Katha Perumal or Sri Jagatrakshaka. Facing East and on the banks of river Kaveri, the Lord is gracing with Sri Padmasani or Sri Pushpavalli Thayar. This temple is also known as Aduthurai Perumal koil. With the name Aduthurai there are two places and Koodalur is also the name of two places. One Koodalur is in Madurai, which we have already visited; but this Koodalur is in Chola region. One Aduthurai is beyond Kumbakonam and this place is not that. To reach this place one can come to Thanjavur and proceed to Ayyampettai, from where one has to go to Ganapati Agraharam. This temple is about two kilometres from Ganapati Agraharam. So anyone desiring to visit this place, should properly enquire and reach, to avoid missing this place. It takes about 11/2 hours journey from Trichy. Today [15th February 2008] we are at the sannidhi of Sri Adi Varaha Perumal, in this temple. In Vishnu purana, sage Parashara says that in Varaha avatara, Sri Vishnu took a very large boar form and the eyes were like large lotus flowers. The Lord appeared to redeem Sri Bhoodevi, captured by Hiranyaksha. Here the Lord has Sri Bhoodevi on His lap. Bhoo means earth, for which another name is Jagat. Thus the Lord is called Jagat Rakshaka [ Protector of Earth]. In Tamil, He is called Sri Vaiyam [earth] Katha [Protect] Perumal.

arjuna uvaca
ayatih shraddhayopeto
yogac calita-manasah
aprapya yoga-samsiddhim
kam gatim krishna gacchati

"Arjuna said: O Krishna, what is the destination of the unsuccessful transcendentalist, who in the beginning takes to the process of self-realization with faith but who later desists due to worldly-mindedness and thus does not attain perfection in mysticism?"

Arjuna raises a doubt. After adopting a new course, if we slip, will we lose the new as well as the old courses? It is like we change the queue, thinking we may reach a counter quickly. Person was earlier enjoying worldly matters. He changed this to yoga for better life. If he slipped in yoga due to any reason, he might lose the result for whuich he started yoga. Not merely that, he had already abandoned worldly matters and so those also are not there to enjoy. He might thus lose both ways. This is Arjuna's doubt. Earlier, before starting yoga, the person might have been performing some rituals to beget children or to acquire wealth. Thinking they are all inferior objctives, he abandoned all those and resorted to yoga with enthusiasm. But in the midway in yoga, with pressures of the surrounding, the person got distracted and sliped from yoga. What is the fate of this person? Arjuna asks. This sloka reflects the average person's doubt. Shraddhayopeta = with enthusiasm started [the yoga], ayati = but is unable to put in the required efforts, calita manasa = with slipped mind from, yogo = yoga. We satrted the yoga so that we will have atman darshanam and consider all equal. But in the course, suddenly we lose ourselves when some one abuses or does bad things for us. Or suddenly, we aspire to acquire more wealth or swarga. Then, we have slipped from yoga. Yogasamsiddhim = the objective of yoga, atman sakshatkaram, aprapya = not attained, kam gatim = which destination, gacchati = will he go? Will he get Moksha or will he enjoy the pleasures of this world or will he be pushed into naraka? What is going to be the destination of this person who has slipped halfway from yoga? Sri Krishna is going to reply that he would reach good destination, in the coming slokas.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008


We are in Thiruppullani, one of the 18 Kshetrams in Pandya region. Every Kshetram will have a sthals vruksham or temple tree, that would be famous. Today's [14th February 2008] lecture is from beneath the Aswatha vruksham in the temple. It is called arasa maram in Tamil and commonly referred to as peepal tree. Here, it is not merely the sthala vruksham, but the Lord appeared as this tree long ago. Later on only, at the request of sages He appeared as Sri Adi Jagannatha. Sriman Narayana first created the four faced Brahma, who by shear sankalpam or thought created his four sons Sanatkumaran, etc,. Brahma requested them to help him in the creation of the world and others. But their interest was in meditation on Sri Narayana and so they refused to participate in Karma like creations. Discouraged Brahma along with his four sons proceeded to Thirupparkadal or Ksheerabdi or Milk ocean, to seek the advice of the Lord reclining on the serpent bed. On the way they all saw in this place a very luminous tree, which is the present tree in the temple. When Brahma approached the tree to find what it was, the Lord announced that He was appearing as a tree. This tree is considered as the king of trees. In Gita also Sri Krishna proclaims that He is Aswatta tree among trees. To prove this, perhaps, He is appearing as an Aswatta tree here. It is a very old tree and the branches are long and wide spread. Many naagars [snake sculptures in stone] are installed. They are very important. Those in need of children or to ward off snake curses, stay for three days and worship naagars. Stone sculptures of snakes, after placing at the feet of Sri Santhana Gopalan idol in the temple for 42 days, are installed beneath this tree. The branches grow and when hit the ground, another tree shoots up. The leaf of this tree is unique. The stem is veru long about half a foot in length and similarly the tip of the leaf also is equally long. The shape is the usual cordate [heart] shape, however. In an ancient Tamil poem Pullani andhadi, this tree is described as having the power to cure many diseases. That poem is carved in a stone slab here. Swami Vedantha Desika has composed a philosophical treatise on saranagati -Abhayapradanasaram, explaining the Vibheeshana saranagati performed in the Kshetram. Vishadavak sikamani swami Manavala Mamunigal had visited this place and stayed beneath a tamarind tree. He had blessed that tree and tree was able to get Moksham. Thus this Kshetram is full of wonders. Now we will see sloka 36:

asamyatatmana yogo
dusprapa iti me matih
vasyatmana tu yatata
sakyo ’vaptum upayatah

"For one whose mind is unbridled, self-realization is difficult work. But he whose mind is controlled and who strives by appropriate means is assured of success. That is My opinion."

An understanding of this sloka will complete the method to practice yoga. Asamyatat mana = one, who is not controlling his mind, yogo = [here it means] samadarsanam or viewing all equally, dusprapa = impossible to attain, iti = this is, me = My [Sri Krishna's], mathi = conclusion or opinion. Only person who controls mind can have samadarshanam. Persons not able to control their minds can never get sama darshanam. Sama darshanam is obtained only by yoga, which requires disciplined mind. Only by controlling the mind and practicing yoga, the person will be able to look at all as atman without body, and so will be able to perceive identical nature. He will realize all atman are embodiment of gyana and ananda, and all are identical and so will view all equally. Uncontrolled mind will only see the differences perceptible on the bodies. Alwar says that he could control these five scoundrels - five sense organs- only with His blessings. Tu = but, vasyatmana = one who has tamed the mind [ controlling mind], yatata = if tries, avaptum sakya = can attain, upayata = by following this method. This method will enable him to control the mind and so atman darshan will be achieved. Which method? Earlier He mentioned vairagyam and abhyasam. Vairagyam is tutoring the mind of the inferior happiness of materials, transient nature and consequent miseries. This way a sort of hatred for such desires will grow. Mind should at the same time be diverted on atman, by constant and repeated practice. This is abhyasam. Armed with vairagyam and abhyasam, this method has to be followed. Here the method is Karma yoga, Sri Krishna has been preaching from Chapter 2. If one practices the assigned duties, without any intention for selfish gains, mind will get controlled. When we go to temple, if we have only devotion in our mind, then for that small time we are present in the temple we perform Karma yoga. Similarly all our other assigned duties in service of God. Let us tabulate the process:

  • Vairagyam
  • Abhyasam
  • Karma yoga [includes Gyana yoga as part]
  • Control of mind
  • Sama darshanam [Here there are four types 1] all atman are equal by gyana. 2] equal with Paramatman in 8 qualities. 3] Realizing as body of Paramatman and so all others. 4] Gyana in its full blossom and no happiness or sorrow would affect.
So Karma yoga is the upaya to reach sama darshanam.
We will now take leave of Thiruppullani.