We have been seeing the greatness of Sri Krishna. But the factor behind these is, like the lightning amidst black clouds, Sri Thayar. She stimulates His various qualities. Today's [10th April 2008] lecture is from the sannidhi of Sri Sengkamala Thayar, aka Sri Hemabjanayaki and Sri Rakthabjanayaki. Sage Brughu was once bound by a curse and to get relieved of it, he had to come to this Kshetram, bathe in the pond and meditate on the Lord. Accordingly, sage Brughu came here and meditated on the banks of another pushkarini, Thirupparkkadal [திருப்பார்க்கடல்]. He prayed the Lord to bless Sri Mahalakshmi to be his daughter and He should marry Her. He was granted this request and Sri Mahalakshmi appeared as his daughter and married the Lord. Present Sri Lakshmi Narayana sannidhi here is witness to that great event. There is a mantap nearby, and the Lord starts most of His riding on His vehicles [வாகனம் ] in the festivals, from this mantap only. The main Brahmotsavam is in the Tamil month Panguni. Kalyanotsavam of the Lord and Thayar are done in the mantap near Thayar sannidhi. Every Friday, abhishekam [திருமஞ்சனம்] is performed for Thayar. Because She emerged from ared lotus flower, She is called Sri Senkamalavalli [செங்கமலவல்லி] or Sri Rakthabja or Sri Hemabja Thayar. Earlier, we saw that the Lord appeared in 32 forms to the sages Gopilar and Gopralayar. Almost all these are depicted in the 18 day Brahmotsavam. It is unique for this Kshetram to have such a long 18 day brahmotsavam. Everyday, the Lord will appear in different forms to bless the devotees. One day He appears as Vennaiththazhi Sri Krishnan [வெண்ணெய் தாழி கிருஷ்ணன்]. Sri Krishna appears in the form of an infant carrying a pot of butter. On that day, to repeat the incident of the past Gokulam days, devotees will throw butter on the Lord, and even the archakas will be drenched in butter. Nearby this kshetram, is a place called Neyvasal [ நெய்வாசல்] and it got that name because the butter melting as ghee was flowing upto that! Near Thayar sannidhi, there is a mantap called Rohini mantap, from where the Lord graces like a King! He is Sri Raja Gopalan! By visiting these during festivals, devotees lose their mind in Him. As age advances, some of us develop an indifference to many worldly pleasures. Similarly, if we develop a taste for Sri Rajagopala, then we will find that all the worldly pleasures are available in Him and we do not need materials. The happiness we derive from Sri Vasudeva is everlasting and will never diminish nor slip away. But this resolution that Sri Vasudeva is everything, does not come to us easily. Because we have not developed that faith in Him. From the 4th sloka to 12th sloka, Sri Krishna told about His greatness - He is all Achit and all Chit, He is the asylum for all, He is the taste in food, He is the light of the Sun, He is the thermal power in Fire, etc., we are His properties, and so on. Initially in this Chapter He told that one among Millions only tries to understand me and takes efforts and in Millions of such, one gets the real understanding. To get this true understanding, we have to accept He is our Master and Protector. Till 6th Chapter, we would have accepted all as we think there was logic. But some may think that 7th Chapter is not scientific and is against rational thinking. But actually, just like we are able to accept atman is different from body but controls the body, Paramatman is in every atman and controls them. Why should temples be built? We could have been asked to meditate on the Lord in Vaikuntam. It would have been impossible as He is in a place not in our sight. But the Lord, as in temples, is easy to be meditated and we can accept that this Lord in a temple only is in our atman. It will give raise to sama darshan. Science means that which can be demonstrated or proved. In our religion also these are demonstrated and proved. Gopilar and Gopralayar, as also Brughu, proved that everything is Sri Vasudeva. How many persons have seen the Lord and wrote their findings? Valmiki, Vyasa, Sukhacharya, Parashara, Ramnuja, Shankaracharya, Madvacharya, Tulasidasa, Tyagaraja, Kabirdasa, Purandaradasa, the list is endlees- have all realized the Lord and wrote their findings. If we also develop faith, we can also see the Lord. We should think He is everything for us -food, water, shelter, and what not? We never for a moment think that all the experiences we have are due to Him. Upanishads say annam [food] is God and don't disregard as it is lifesaving for many. By constantly visiting temples and participating in festivals, we develop this faith. Once we understand that Sri Vasudeva is everything then we are not mere atman but Mahatma.
VENNAI THAZHI KRISHNAN [note the butter smeared all over]