Thursday, November 20, 2008

BG 11.41

The Lord appeared in Avatars and took the forms like Fish, Tortoise, Boar, etc. The Avatar of the Lord as Sri Rama can be worshiped in the North in Ayodhya and in the South in Thiruppullani [near Rameswaram]. But we are in the Northern tip of Tamil Nadu, in Thondai Nadu. In Thiruputkuzhi, Sri Rama is gracing as Sri Vijayaraghava. In the Dynasty in which the Lord was born as Sri Rama, there was a King Raghu; and so the the Lord got the name Sri Raghava. Since He was victorious in every act and in every battle, He is called Sri Vijayaraghava. He is called here as Sri Poreru [ஸ்ரீ போரேறு]. The nandavanam [garden] in the temple adds beauty. Flower service [புஷ்ப கைங்கர்யம்] to the Lord is important and all the Alwars have praised it. It seems even the Commander of the Army of the Lord, Vishvaksena, is also involved in Flower service to the Lord. Perialwar, Sri Andal and Thondaradipodi Alwar were involved in this service. Among Acharyas, Swami Anantalwan did Flower service to the Lord. So, to gather flowers a garden is maintained in the temple. In the centre is a mandapam and is surrounded by multi colored flowers. All flowers are waiting to decorate the Lord. Perialwar says thet he wanted to present the Lord with Eight types of Flowers. The heat due to the surrounding place can be easily dissipated by sitting in theis garden. Swami Ramanuja appeared in this Earth to reduce the sufferings of the people in the heat of samsaram. Vedanta has many sentences, which appear as contradictory. Swami Ramanuja, took up the task of properly interpreting all the sayings in Vedas and removed the apparent contradictions in some of them. The Lord Himself called [Swami Ramanuja's interpretations] as Emperumanar Darsanam [எம்பெருமானார் தரிசனம்], otherwise known as Visishtadvaitam. Swami Ramanuja spent his younger days in this place -Thiruputkuzhi - and learnt Vedas under Swami Yadavaprakasa, an Advaitic sanyasi. The interpretation of Vedas in Advaitam is known as Poorva paksha [earlier arguments].

Emperumanars school.JPG

In the mandapam in the temple Swami Ramanuja was learning Vedas from Swami Yadavaprakasa. Swami Ramanuja is standing near Swami Yadavaprakasa. During such learning, there used to appear disputes between the Two. Swami Yadavaprakasa would tell an interpretation of a particular Veda sentence; Swami Ramanuja would refute and place his considered interpretation. These disputes finally resulted in their separation. As an example, yatova imani bhutani jayante, yena janati jivanti . yatra yam vism visanti tad vidigyasasya tad brahmeti is a sentence. Upanishad identifies Brahmam - God - by quoting some attributes. From Whom the Universe got created, from Whom the Universe is sustained and from Whom the Universe finally merges, is Brahmam or God. Also Upanishad says that the Lord is satyam [everlasting], gyanam [fully knowledgeable, unlimited] and anantam [ infinite]. Swami Yadavaprakasa stated that Brahmam could not be identified; because Brahmam could not be described by any quality, nor any form and so It was abstract or nirvisesham, devoid of any attributes. As an example, to drive his statement, he said that seeing a cow without horns, with small horns and with full horns, means all these three could not be in a single cow and so refers to Three cows seen. According to him, creation and destruction were two actions opposed to each other. How could the same Brahmam create as well as destroy? And, so his argument was that these can not be identifications for Brahmam. But Swami Ramanuja gave the counter argument satisfying the apparent contradiction. According to him, same Brahmam creates, sustains and destroys. In the cow example, at the same time the same cow might not be displaying without, with little and with full grown, horns; but at different times the same cow could have appeared with all the three features. Similarly, the Lord creates the Universe at one time, maintains it in another time and destroys it in yet another time. He is not destroying during creation nor creating during destruction. Therefore, Swami Ramanuja established that the attributes in Vedas were correct and no contradiction was there. We will now proceed to sloka 42, which is continuation of sloka 41. Arjuna seeks pardon for his indifference. After seeing for the First time the glory of the Lord, Arjuna said that he might have addressed the Lord, earlier out of ignorance, indifference and affection; and, sought to be excused. He continues in sloka 42:
yac cavahasartham asat-krto ’si
eko ’tha vapy acyuta tat-samaksham
tat ksamaye tvam aham aprameyam

"I have dishonored You many times, jesting as we relaxed, lay on the same bed, or sat or ate together, sometimes alone and sometimes in front of many friends. O infallible one, please excuse me for all those offenses."
Tat kshmaye = please excuse, aham = me [Arjuna], tvam = You [Sri Krishna] are, aprameyam = beyond understanding [by Arjuna]. Arjuna requests Sri Krishna to pardon him for all indifference and ignorance. Yac = those words, avahasartham = teasing, asat-krto si = to humiliate, during vihara = in playing or relaxing, sayya = while in bed, asana = while sitting, or bhojanesu = during eating. Arjuna says that he might have teased or ridiculed Sri Krishna with words spoken while playing or in bed or sitting in assembly or during meals. Eko = in private, athavapy = or otherwise [in assembly], Arjuna might have spoken disrespectfully. Arjuna now seeks pardon. Because the Lord was aprameya - beyond anyone's reach. Just as these glorifying words can not reach such a great person Sri Krishna was, Arjuna's insignificant words also should not be minded by Sri Krishna. Sri Andal says that when Sri Krishna appeared as a cowherd and did pranks, it gives us an experience to feel; but those actions in no way would affect His greatness. We now take leave of this Kshetram.

No comments: