Friday, June 5, 2009

BG 16.18

Rig Veda says that the Lord is having Sri Maha Lakshmi on His chest. Even if all kith and kin are lost, it directs people to go to the [Tirumala] hills of the Lord, with many devotees and chanting the Divine name Govinda! Before we climb the hills, we first worship Garuda [known as Periya Tiruvadi பெரிய திருவடி in sampradhayam], standing as a large statue. On the other side we worship Anjaneya [known as Siriya Tiruvadi சிறிய திருவடி in sampradhayam], who is connected with the hills. We had earlier seen what is presently known as Alipiri, but was Adipuli [அடிப்புளி], where there was a tamarind tree, under which Swami Ramanuja learnt Srimad Ramayana, from Swami Periya Tirumalai Nambi, for one year! After passing Alpiri, we come to the Seven hills, which has Seven names. Though Lord Sri Srinivasa arrived at the hills in Kali yug, the hills are here from Kruta yug. At that time this hill was called Vrushabadri [வ்ருஷபாத்ரி]. In Treta yug, it was called Anjanadri [அஞ்சனாத்ரி]. In Dwapara yug, its name was Seshadri [சேஷாத்ரி]. In Kali yug it is called Venkatadri [வேங்கடாத்ரி]. In addition it is also called Vedadri [வேதாத்ரி], Garudadri [கருடாத்ரி] and Anandadri [ஆனந்தாத்ரி]. While appreciating the nature surrounding the hills, we can learn about the reason for these names. Once there was a demon called Vrushabasura and he fought with the Lord, on the hills. While the demon was about to be killed, he prayed the Lord to pardon and accept him as His devotee; and that the hills should be named after him. in Tretayug, Sri Rama was present. Hanuman's parents were Anjana Devi and Kesari. They had no children, and Anjana Devi came here and meditated. The god of wind, Vayu, brought her one fruit everyday, to sustain her life. With the blessings of the hills, she delivered Hanuman. Thus the hills came to be known as Anjanadri. In Dwapara Yug, there was a competition as to who was mightier between Vayu and Adisesha. Once Vayu wanted to worship the Lord, but was stopped by Adisesha, guarding. It resulted in the competition. Adisesha was to coil around Meru mountain and prevent Vayu from lifting off the mountain! This competition took place for a long time and caused inconvenience to people. Under the command of the Lord, Narada played his musical instrument Veena. This music drowsed Adisesha a little and he lifted his hoods a little. In this brief period, Vayu with his force carried the apex hill top and threw it in this place. But Adisesha to prevent damage to others spread his body here and recieved the hill top on him. Thus this was known as Seshadri. Since Lord Sri Venkatesa is residing here, it is known as Venkatadri! It is believed that Vedas are serving the Lord by being a mountain and so this is called Vedadri. The Lord had ordered Garuda to bring this mountain and Vimanam from Vaikuntam, and so it has the name Garudadri. The Vimanam over the Lord is called Ananda Nilaya Vimanam. Therefore, the hills are known as Anandadri. Vedas grade happiness as Modam, Pramodam, Sammodam, Aamodam and Anandam. Brahmam is Anandam. Worshiping the Lord here is Anandam! What else devotees need? Venkatam is Vem [வேம்] + Katam [கடம்], and gives the same meaning in Tamil and Sanskrit. Vem means sins and kata means destroyed. Thus remaining even for a little on the hills our sins are burnt away! In Tamil vem means burning and katam means sins. Thus in both languages same meaning is conveyed. At the entrance to the hills, are Jaya and Vijaya in very large statues guarding the entire hills. Poigai Alwar says that afte we enter the hills and worship the Lord, we should not return! Now we will see sloka 18. We will see the connection between the slokas to follow and the hills, later. Sloka 18:

ahaṃkāraṃ balaṃ darpaṃ kāmaṃ krodhaṃ ca saṃśritāḥ
mām ātmaparadeheṣu pradviṣantobhyasūyakāḥ 16.18

The Lord says that those with Asura qualities consider Him as enemy! They are jealous of Him and do not accept that the Lord administers this Universe! They think they are the rulers. Ahankaram = ego [that they are responsible for their success in life and they needed none's help], balam = strength [of their own responsible for their life], darpam = pride [consider all others as secondary or insignificant], kamam = lust or desire [to satisfy their senses], krodham = anger [ against all those preventing them from enjoying what they desired], ca samsrita = and think they have attained. Atma = self [ and the likes of Asura quality people], para = others [devoted to the Lord], dehesu = in their bodies, mam = [residing] Me [Sri Krishna], pradisantobhy = [these asura quality persons] hate and, asuyaka = are jealousy. These persons hate the Lord and are jealous of the Lord Who resides in Asura quality persons as well as Deva quality persons. There is no reason to hate the Lord. Then why do they hate? Because of the papas committed in infinite births. These sins make them to be born with Asura qualities. Ravana, Kamsa, Kumbakarna, all the 14,000 Rakshasas in Dandakaranya, etc., hated Him and fought Him. We might say that now Ravana like persons are not there. But in each of us, we sometime think that a particular deed was done by one's own effort and skill. Many times we ask why God had granted a particular hardship. This itself is opposing the Lord. Unless we get a unshakable faith in Him, these doubts are opposed to Him. There are answers to all our questions and instead of searching them, if we start questioning the Lord, it tantamounts to opposing Him! When we see good qualities also as bad, it is jealousy! It is misunderstanding other's good qualities. Asura quality persons should cross all these bad qualities and surrender unto Him, as we cross the hills to have a darshan of the Lord.

No comments: