Today's [31st March 2008] is from the sannidhi of Poet Kamban. He starts his epic Ramayana with the verse 'ulagam yavayum thamulavakkalum nilaiperuthalum neekkalum neengala alagila vilayattudai yaravar thalaivar annavarke sharan naangalae' - He, Who creates, sustains and destroys this Universe, and Who does these as a game, That Sriman Narayana, is our Leader. His birth place is Therazhundur. Here Poet Kamban and his spouse grace. When talking of this place it is said as the birth place of Kamban and the place where the curse of 'kumba' Muni was nullified. We had seen that Mother Kaveri came to this place and meditated on the Lord. Sage Agasthya, known as Kumba Muni, while at Podigai Mountains [bordering Thirunelveli], found Tamil language equal to Sanskrit, in literature and culture. Agasthya proposed to marry Kaveri, but she refused and so he was angered and packed her in his kamandalam [water pot]. Because the river was packed, there was famine, and unbearable of this, Kaveri came out of the kamandalam, and started flowing. The sage was further angered and he cursed that whichever place the river touched should go dry. To nullify that curse, Kaveri came to this place and after a bath in Darsha Pushkarini, meditated sitting near the Lord, here. The Lord blessed her and the curse was nullified. Thus we can see Mother Kaveri, is seated in the garbha gruha, near the Lord. Sage Markandeya was a great devotee of lord Shiva and he prayed lord Shiva to grant him, mukthi [Moksham]. Lord Shiva directed Markandeya to this place and meditate on the Lord here. The Lord yielded to his prayers and granted Moksham. Thus in the garbha gruha, we can see Garuda, Markandeya, Prahalada and Kaveri, along with the Lord. Two worms were conversing and one said to the other that it would reach from this hill to another hill. Other worm, mocked and said that it would take so many months to reach that place and by that time its life would be over and so it was impossible to go to the other peak. Challenging this , the first worm got on to the body of a lion, which lived there. The lion jumped from this hill to the other hill and there the first worm, got down and from there spoke to the second worm that it had successfully reached the new place. Moral of this story is that if we can not do a thing, we can attach ourselves to someone else capable of doing and get the work done. By ourselves, we can not do yoga to reach Vaikuntam; while by just surrendering unto the Lord and clinging to His feet steadfastly, we can easily reach Vaikuntam. Kambar says this in his starting verse of Ramayana. In the 14th sloka, the Lord also tells that by surrendering unto Him, one could cross the Universe or samsaram. Arjuna wondered, then why all are not following this simple and easy method to cross? What prevents them? Sri Krishna tells four types of people do not come to Him and these are told in the !5th sloka:
na mam duskritino mudhah
asuram bhavam asritah
"Those miscreants who are grossly foolish, who are lowest among mankind, whose knowledge is stolen by illusion, and who partake of the atheistic nature of demons do not surrender unto Me."
Four categories of people do not recognize Sri Krishna. Duskritino = sinned persons, na prapadyante = do not surrender unto, mam = Me [Sri Krishna] :
- Mudha = fools, who do not know about Sri Krishna. They are ignorant of the greatness of Sri Krishna, while they might know all other subjects. They are not aware that He is the Master and all are to serve Him.
- Naraadhama = lowest among human beings. These people know the greatness of the Lord; they know He is the Master; they also know what their position in relation to God. Yet, they never feel it proper to surrender unto Him or pray to Him. Such people we see in our own family and friends' circles. They are not atheists; but they have no interest in temples and devotion. It is also possible, that some in this category, might think the Lord is at a very high level for them to approach or might be fearing that their papa might stick to the Lord.
- Mayaya apahrta-jnana = people carried away by delusion and false words. These are persons who have studied all vedas and puranas; but they believe God has no form, He has no gunas [qualities]. He is nothing. These words cause delusion and confusion in some persons, and so they also do not go to the Lord. They are carried away by instances like the Lord stole butter and that He married thousands of Gopikas, etc. They do not realize, that what all we think ours, are all His properties and so there is no question of stealing by the Lord. He is the only Male and all atman are His wives.
- Asuram bhavam asrita = attaining wicked character. Persons like Ravana and Hiranyakasipu, were well learned but they had developed evil character. They consider God as their enemy. Ravana wanted to abduct Sri Sita and so sought the help of Maricha, who advised Ravana to desist from that scheme. At that time Ravana tells Maricha, that he knew the prowess of Sri Rama, yet He would not change from his contempt for Sri Rama. If Sri Rama were to kill Ravana, who says that he would rather fall backwards and not in the front, as that could be interpreted as surrender to Sri Rama.