srimathe ramanujaya nama:
srimad varavaramunaye nama:
sri vaanaachala mahamunaye nama:
We have so far seen the external and internal qualities that should manifest in a srivaishnava. We have also seen the apachaarams that a srivaishnava should avoid. And finally in the previous 2 articles (http://ponnadi.blogspot.in/2012/08/srivaishnava-lakshanam-8.html and http://ponnadi.blogspot.in/2012/08/srivaishnava-lakshanam-9.html) we have seen how a srivaishnava should be respected irrespective of their birth.
Once we understand all of these, we have to start looking at how srivaishnavas should spend their time when in samsaaram. Our emperumaan, azhwars and acharyas have explained this very nicely in their works. Let us see some of those gems from our pUrvaachaarya works in this regard.
Krishnan in bhagavad gIthai slokam 10.9 says:
mac-citthaa mad-gata-praanaa bodhayantha parasparam
kathayantas ca maam nityam tusyanti ca ramanti ca
My devotees think about me all the time, have me as their life breath, in discussing about me together both the speakers and the listeners enjoy great bliss.
In vEdhaantham (brihathaaranyaka upanishad), it is said that:
“aathmaa vaa arE drashTavya: srOthavya: manthavya: nidhidhyaasithavya:”
By constantly listening about paramaathmaa, contemplating on what was heard, meditating on paramaathmaa, jIvaathma will finally get to see paramaathamaa.
In Sri bhaagavatham prahlaadhaazhwaan instructs every one to engage in 9 activities:
sravanam kIrthanam visnOh smaranam paadha-sEvanam
archanam vandhanam sakyam dhaasyam aathma-nivEdhanam
Hearing about emperumaan, singing about him, thinking/meditating about him, serving at the lotus feet of him,
worshipping him, praising him, having friendship with him, being a servant to him and surrendering oneself to him are the main activities of a bhaktha.
Nammaazhwar, who is praised as srivaishnava kulapathi by aalavandhaar, in the 86th paasuram of periya thiruvanthaathi, says:
kaarkalaNthamEniyaan kaikalaNtha aazhiyaan (கார்கலந்தமேனியான் கைகலந்த ஆழியான்)
paarkalaNtha valvayiRRaan paambanNaiyaan (பார்கலந்த வல்வயிற்றான் பாம்பணையான்)
chIrkalaNtha chol NinaiNthupOkkaarEl choozhvinaiyin aazhthuyarai (சீர்கலந்த சொல் நினைந்துபோக்காரேல் சூழ்வினையின் ஆழ்துயரை)
enniNaiNthu pOkkuvarippOthu (என்னிநைந்து போக்குவரிப்போது)
How can we spend the time in this samsaaram which is full of miseries without thinking about emperumaan who has a beautiful blackish thirumEni, who carries the paanjachanyam in his hand, one who protects everyone/everything during pralayam by keeping them in his stomach, one who is lying down on aadhisEshan? Such is the state of azhwar, that he cant stop thinking about emperumaan even for a moment and he is wondering what else we can do. On the other hand, samsaaris will say we can do so many things but dont know how some one can think about emperumaan even for a moment.
Thirumazhisai azhwar, in the 63rd paasuram of naanmugan thiruvanthathi, says:
theriththu ezhuthi vaachiththu vanNanGgi vazhipattum pUchiththum pOkkinEn pOthu (தெரித்து எழுதி வாசித்து வணங்கி வழிபட்டும் பூசித்தும் போக்கினேன் போது)
He says he spends his time by thinking/meditating on emperumaan, writing about him, reading about him, hearing about him from others, worshipping him without any pride, doing thiruvaaraadhanam to him.
Pillai lOkaachaariar in srivachana bhUshanam sutram 274 says:
for a sath sishya (true sishya) who is utterly dependant on his acharyan:
* vasthavyam acharya sannidhiyum bhagavad sannidhiyum - living place is where his acharyan resides and (if that is not possible) where emperumaan resides
* vakthavyam acharya vaibhavamum sva nikarshamum - topic of speech is his acharya's glories and his own faults
* japthavyam guru paramparaiyum dhvayamum - chanting/anusandhaanam is vaakya guru paramparai and dhvaya mahaa mantram
* parigraahyam pUrvaachaaryas vachanamum anushtaanamum - to take up, the instructions and history of the pUrvaachaaryas
* parithyaajyam avaishnava sahavaasamum abhimaanamum - to give up, any relationship with avaishnavas and we should not perform any activity which will make an avaishnava consider us part of his group.
* karthavyam acharya kainkaryamum bhagavath kainkaryamum - to serve the acharyan, emperumaan and his adiyaars
Manavaala Maamunigal in his aarthi prabhandham (divine crying out to emperumaanaar to relieve him immediately of his miseries in this samsaaram), in the 28th paasuram describes his activities. Maamunigal even though he is punaravathaaram of emperumaanaar himself, he is always in the mode of praising emperumaanaar to show us how to do that. Just like how perumaaL (raaman) worshipped periya perumaaL in thrEtha yugam to show us how to do thiruvaaraadhanam, maamunigal also worships emperumaanaar to show us how to fully depend on emperumaanaar.
panNdu pala aariyarum paarulagOr uyyap parivuadanE cheydhu aruLum palkalaigaL thammaik kanNdathellaam ezhudhi (பண்டு பல ஆரியரும் பாருலகோர் உய்யப் பரிவுஅடனே செய்து அருளும் பல்கலைகள் தம்மைக் கண்டதெல்லாம் எழுதி)
avai kaRRu iruNthum piRarkkuk kaathaludan kaRpiththum kaalaththaik kazhiththEn (அவை கற்று இருந்தும் பிறர்க்குக் காதலுடன் கற்பித்தும் காலத்தைக் கழித்தேன்)
punNdarigai kELvan uRai ponnulagu thannil pOga Ninaivu onRuminRip poruNthi inGgE iruNthEn (புண்டரிகை கேள்வன் உறை பொன்னுலகு தன்னில் போக நினைவு ஒன்றுமின்றிப் பொருந்தி இங்கே இருந்தேன்)
endichaiyum Eththum ethiraachan aruLaalE ezhilvichumbE anRi ippOthu enmanam enNnNaathE (என்டிசையும் ஏத்தும் எதிராசன் அருளாலே எழில்விசும்பே அன்றி இப்போது என்மனம் எண்ணாதே)
In the first 2 lines (as split above), maamunigal explains that he searched and collected all the pUrvaachaarya granthams which were lost/distributed during muslim invasion. These granthams were written by the apaara kaarunyam of pUrvaachaaryas towards the hitham of all the future generations. Whatever granthams he found, he wrote them personally in palm leaves, he learnt them from his aacharyans (thiruvaaimozhi pillai, etc), lived according to the instructions in those granthams, and taught those to all his disciples.
In the next 2 lines (as split above), maamunigal says before getting the kataaksham (krupai) of emperumaanaar through his acharyan thiruvaimozhi pillai, he did not have any desire to go to paramapadham, but once he got that kataaksham he could not stop thinking about going to paramapadham for even a single moment.
From the above we can see how we should live our life. While these are mostly general principles, in the next article we will a specific sUtram from srivachana bhUshanam where pillai lOkaachaaryar gives an excellent sketch of how srivaishnavas should conduct themselves here.
adiyen sarathy ramanuja dasan
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