Tuesday, September 8, 2009

BG 18.34

Among Sri Vaishnava Acharyas, Swami Vatsya Varadacharya, more popularly known as Swami Nadadur Ammal, lived long back. He has composed Paratvati Panchakam stotram. In that he describes Vyuham as below:
Amode bhuvane pramoda uta sam.mode ca sankars.an.am.
pradyumnam.ca tath¯aniruddhamapi t¯an sr.s.t.i sthit¯ı c¯apyayam |
kurv¯an.¯an matimukhya s.ad.gun.avaraih.yukt¯am.striyugm¯atmakaih.
vy¯uh¯adhis.t.hitav¯asudevamapi tam.ks.¯ır¯abdhin¯atham.bhaje ||

"[I] bow to Ksheerabdinatha. He has evolved Sankarshana, Pradyumna and Aniruddha, for creation, sustenance and destruction. Their residences are amodam, pramodam and sammodam ". Modham means happiness. There are four stages in happiness. First we grasp the real nature of a matter. This is First stage, perception. When we attain that, it is second stage. Third stage is enjoying that matter. Fourth stage is the continuation of this enjoyment. These are the Four stages of happiness expressed as amodam, pramodam, sammodam and anandam. To indicate these four stages we have to imagine Visaka Yupa Sthambam. This is a tall pillar in Vaikuntam. It has four stages, with different names. We have four stages called Jagrata dasha [awakened], Swapa dasha [dreaming stage], Sushupti dasha [deep sleep] and Turiya dasha [fainted]. In the first dasha, we see everything and this is perception. In the second dasha, outside matter are not visible, but dreams are felt. This is attainment. In the third dasha it is deep sleep, without even dreams. Fourth dasha, turiya means like fainting. All these four indicate the four stages of happiness. We have to imagine this tall pillar. First we see Jagrata stage, where like four branches, Sankarshana, Pradyumna, Aniruddha and Vasudeva Murtys are there. Next is, Swapna stage, again with Four Murtys like four branches. Next is, Sushupti stage with Four Murtys. Finally, we see Turiya stage with Four Murtys. Vasudeva Murty in Eastern direction; Sankarshana in South; Pradyumna in Western direction; and, Aniruddha in North. A devotee has to perform upasana or devotion, starting from the lowest, Jagrata stage and raise every stage. This is why, the Lord is gracing in Ksheerabdi, in Vyuha form, dividing Himself into Four Murtys. We will see more about Ksheerabdi in the coming days. Now we will see sloka 43:

śauryaṃ tejo dhṛtir dākṣyaṃ yuddhe cāpy apalāyanam
dānam īśvarabhāvaś ca kṣātraṃ karma svabhāvajam 18.43

Ksatram karma = duties of Kshatriya or rulers [are these]. Sauryam = bravery [not perturbed by opponent's army and bravely facing. Person with sauryam is soora], tejo = courage [unconquerable], dhriti = determination [unperturbed at any obstacle and remaining steadfast], daksyam = capability to complete [task undertaken], yuddhe = in battles, apalayanam = never withdrawing at defeat [even if, to face death]. Thus a ruler has to protect his kingdom, with his strength. Earlier, the Lord told the qualifications for Brahmins. Kshatriyas have to have the following characteristics also. Danam = bountiful or charity. Sri Rama donated so much. We saw while visiting Sarayu river, an incident in Sri Rama's life, when He gave away cows and other wealth. When Sri Krishna was born, His father Vasudeva gave Thousands of cows, covered by costly robes and decorated with golden horn caps and with Thousand gold coins in gold plates! Donation is a nature of rulers. Isvarabhava = commandership or leadership. Manu has prescribed that rulers have to worshiped like God. Rulers protect weaker sections from mightier persons. These are all characteristics of Kshatriya. All these qualities could be seen in Sri Rama. His ancestors were all great kings and Sri Rama was like the peak among them. He bravely encountered Rakshasa army, with mere army of monkeys. Valmiki at the start of Srimad Ramayanam epic, asks Narada, 'kascha veeryavan?' [who is such great brave person?]. He could destroy the opponent army and make them to run away. He was never perturbed at the appearance of army of Ravana. When Vibheeshana caught hold of spies of Ravana, saying that they had come to report to Ravana about the strength and strategies of Sri Rama, Sri Rama asked Vibheeshana to let them go, as their report would not cause in any way defeat to Sri Rama. Such was His determination and courage! He fought relentlessly and every missile He shot reached the targets as burning rockets. Sri Rama faced all obstacles bravely and with determination. His opponents like Ravana, Kumbakarna and Indrajit were very great warriors; yet, Sri Rama was never perturbed. When He was bound by Nagastra or when Lakshmana was hit or when Maya Sita's head was chopped, Sri Rama remained steadfast. Arjuna also should face battle like that, advises Sri Krishna. Leader or Iswara means Sri Rama only.

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