Thursday, September 10, 2009

BG 18.36

Alwars' lively words dipped in Bhakti are collectively known as Nalayira Divya Prabhandam. Kshetrams mentioned in it, are called Divya Desams and are 108 in number. In them Tirupparkadal or Ksheerabdi is 107th Divya Desam. Earlier we noted that the Fifth ocean is Ksheerabdi. The Lord there, is called Sri Ksheerabdi Natha or Sri Vyuha Vasudeva. Ashtanga Vimanam is here. Sri Kadal Magal Nacchiyar is gracing and in the midst of Amrut Teertham, the Lord is gracing. Excepting Tiruppan Alwar, all Alwars have praised the Lord here. Poet Pillai Perumal Ayyangar, in his 108 Tiruppati Andhadhi, has described this Kshetram. We will see description of Ksheerabdi in Pancharatra. We will first see at least one pasuram of each Alwar on this Kshetram. There are 147 pasurams on this Kshetram. Before that we will see what is described in 108 Tiruppati Andhadhi. In 'thozhum vayanan..', the poet says that if one holds on to the feet of the devotees of Ksheerabdi Natha, one's problems would be solved. Let us now see one pasuram of each Alwar:
Poigai Alwar: The Lord is reclining in Ksheerabdi, to protect us.
Boothatalwar: The Lord is in Ksheerabdi as Destroyer [Sankarshana] during pralayam, Creator [Pradyumna] after pralayam and Sustainer [Aniruddha].
Peyalwar: The Lord on Ananta [Adisesha] comes to our mind and rescues.
Tirumazhisai Alwar: Oh! Adideva [Originator]! He is One in Paramapadam, Three and Four in Ksheerabdi, innumerous as Avatars and as Ksheerabdi Natha in Ksheerabdi and as Divya Mangala Murtys in all Kshetrams.
Nammalwar: Hearing that the luminous Lord is reclining in Ksheerabdi, makes one's mind melt and body stagger.
Kulasekara Alwar: The Lord is mad of devotees and so He is at Ksheerabdi.
Periyalwar: Sacrificing Vaikuntam and Ksheerabdi, the Lord found comfort in Alwar's mind.
Sri Andal: The Lord is the seed, in Ksheerabdi [origin of creation].
Tondaradipodi Alwar: The waves of Ksheerabdi, sprinkle droplets on the Lotus eyed Lord.
Tirumangai Alwar: The Lord is reclining in Ksheerabdi, where even ships are moving.
All these Five days we have seen in detail about Vyuham. With this [if we count Dwaraka also], we have worshiped the Lord in 107 Divya Desams. Then, only Sri Vaikuntam, ultimate destination of all of us, remains. Now, we will see sloka 44 of Chapter 18. In the First line, the Lord tells what the karmas of Vaishyas:

kṛṣigaurakṣyavāṇijyaṃ vaiśyakarma svabhāvajam
paricaryātmakaṃ karma śūdrasyāpi svabhāvajam 18.44

Krsi = farming or cultivation, gauraksya = taking care of cows, vanijyam = commercial activities, vaisya karma = [these] are duties of Vaishya. They have to own lands and cultivate and supply food grains to the world. Cows have to be properly maintained and milk and milk products have to be distributed. Sri Krishna was playing in Brindavan, with thousands of Gopis and lakhs of cows and calves. If the Lord was asked to choose between being Lord of Nityasuris at Vaikuntam and being Sri Gopala, playing with Gopis and cows, He would prefer the latter! It seems Yasoda used to churn curd daily three times. Swami Periyavacchan Pillai in his commentary, asks why the wife of the Leader of Gokulam, should do the churning? Could she not ask her servants to do that? He then answers that though she could be in such exalted position, could she forsake her swayam dharma or own duties? Can a rich man ask his servant to prostrate before God, on his behalf?! One has to do one's own duty. Even Lord Sri Krishna never abandoned His duties! That is why in the war He decided to maintain Arjuna's horses and be a mere driver! We can worship the Lord as Sri Gopala in Mannargudi or in Therazhundur. Business is also their duty. Transactions from selling commodities and paying tax to the rulers, are also their duties. In the next line, the Lord mentions the duties of Shudras, who are like pillars for the society and thus are very important. The other Three persons of other varnas, perform their duties properly, because of Shudras. Everyone has to perform their duties and reach the Lord.

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