Saturday, June 14, 2008

BG 9.4

Thiru Indalur, one of the Chola region Divya desam, is situated inside Mayiladuthurai. We are at the sannidhi of Sri Parimala Ranganatha. Here the Lord is in Veera sayana pose. The reclining pose has been described by great devotees in various forms. Bhujanga sayanam is reclining on the serpent Adisesha. Sri Padmanabha in Thiruvanantapuram is in Anantha sayanam. In Thirukkadalmallai [Mahabalipuram], the Lord is in Sthala sayanam. In Thirukkudanthai [Kumbakonam], the Lord is in Uddhana sayanam [slightly getting up from bed]. In Sirupuliyur, the Lord is in Bala sayanam. Here, the Lord is in Veera sayanam, because He graces with Four arms and in two arms, He is holding discus and conch. Near His head is seated Sri Ganga Thayar and at the feet is seated Sri Kaveri Thayar. We can also see Sun and Moon near the head and feet. From the navel of the Lord is lord Brahma, worshiping the Lord. He is using the right lower arm as pillow and left lower arm is pointing to the feet. It is said that since Sri Ganga washed off all sins of those bathing in Ganga, She wanted to wash off her sins and so came to this place and bathed in Kaveri, in the month of Aippasi [ஐப்பசி]. To demonstrate the importance of bathing in Kaveri in that month the Lord arrives at the river on the first day of Aippasi, on Amavasya day and the last ten days of the month. Utsavar is captivating and He graces with Sri Sridevi and Sri Bhudevi. In the upper two arms He is holding discus and conch; right lower arm is in abhaya mudra; and left lower arm holding the mace. The faces of the Lord and His consort are elliptical, adding to the beauty. In Srimad Ramayanam, Anjaneya after seeing both Sri Rama and Sri Sita wonders how both are so beautiful and made for each other. Anjaneya, here also must be wondering at the beauty of the Lord and His Consort. We will now see the Third sloka of Chapter 9:

asraddadhanah purusha
dharmasyasya parantapa
aprapya mam nivartante

"Those who are not faithful in this devotional service cannot attain Me, O conqueror of enemies. Therefore they return to the path of birth and death in this material world."

In the 1st sloka the Lord told that He would preach the best secret, as Arjuna was sans jealousy. In the next sloka He told that Bhakti yoga was easy to perform and would make the Lord perceptible. Whenever we tell the advantages of a method, it is necessary to tell the disadvantages of the others. Sri Krishna tells the defects of the other means opposed to Bhakti yoga. He advises Arjuna not to choose samsara means as that would involve rebirths. Upanishad says 'nanya patha ayanaya vidhyate tamevam vidwan amrutha iha bhavati'. There is no other way, than to meditate on God and do bhakti. Ayanaya = attaining Sri Vaikuntam, is possible only by Bhakti. Bhakti is like a super highway, smooth to travel and easy to reach destination. Arjuna then doubts who would reject this easy path and take up other difficult paths? Asya dharnasya = this means or way [ Bhakti yoga]. While commenting on Nammalwar's Thiruvaimozhi [1.7], in his Eedu, Swami Nanjeer says this path means the path that is of liking of the Lord Sri Krishna. Paranthapa = destroyer of enemies [Arjuna], ashraddha = without interest [ to attain the Lord]; there are people not interested in the Lord but in inferior worldly pleasures. Mam = Me [Sri Krishna], aprapya = not attaining, mrutyu = death like, samsaram =rebirths, varthmani = repetitive cycles. By choosing other paths and not attaining the Lord, the atman gets damaged [not physically, but in its gyana or knowledge] and involves in rebirths. Nivartante = get fully involved [ in the rebirth and accumulation of more and more papa/punya]. Four words of this sloka are important: purusha, mam, aprapya and nivartante. Purusha means those who are eligible to reach the Lord by practicing Bhakti yoga. Such people discard this smooth path to reach Him. Mam - such people lose the greatest of wealth, the Lord. Aprapya - the Lord is waiting to take that person in His fold; but that person is not realizing and chooses other benefits. Nivartante- this samsaram is very inferior and many scholars and Acharyas have explained the disadvantages; despite all these, they want to live in this and get all disadvantage. So, Bhakti is essential to reach Him.

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