Experiencing Swamy Desika -- #88
Shrimate Shri Lakshmi Nrusimha Parabrahmane Namaha:
Shrimate Shri Seetha Ramachandra Parabrahmane Namaha:
Shrimate Shri Ramanujaya Namaha:
Shrimate Nigamantha Maha Desikaya Namaha:
Shrimate Shrivan Satagopa Shri Narayana Yateendra Mahadesikaya Namaha:
"SrimAn VenaktanAthArya: kavithArkika kEsarI!
VedAnthAchArya varyO mE sannidhatthAM sadhA hrudhi"!!
Subhasita Nivi is filled with gems which can enlighten our
path in the acquisition of knowledge. Swami has taken
different kinds of people, their nature of behaviour and
varied circumstances into consideration. This is like a
practical guide for us in our day to day life!
In Anipuna Paddhati, we saw that Swami had dealt with persons
lacking mental discrimination. Swami says that they see
non-existent fault in others, and assume themselves to be
perfect. The following Sloka is on such ignorant critics!
"Pashyathi ParEshu dhOshan asathOpi jana: sathOpi naaiva guNaan!
Vipareethamidam swasmin mahima moohaajjanasyaisha: !!"
-- Anipuna Paddhati (3)
"Men see non-existent faults in others but not their obvious
virtues. On the contrary, they see not their own defects but
see imaginary virtues in themselves. This is the wonderful
effect of the collyrium of delusion applied to their eyes."
The ignorant critics, due to false notions as explained above,
becomes a drpta (Proud and arrogant). In the following Sloka
in drpta Paddhati, Swami explains that great men may have
similarities with other men in certain aspects. But this does
not mean that they are equals. Ordinary men have their own
"ghativyOrmnA kim tadgarudamabhitIkEta cataka:
pibhatvambha: sharam na khalu kalashIsoonuralasa: !
kala: kantE nAda: ka yiva mashaka: kinnara pati:
kathamcit sAdharmyam shipati nahi vaidharmyaniyamam !!"
-- Drpta Paddhati (11)
"Pride and arrogance behoove little to ordinary beings. Can a
sparrow challenge Garuda though both fly in the sky? Can an
invalid, who gets saline water for his cure, claim equality with
sage Agastya who drank the entire ocean? Can the whine of the
mosquito ever rival the music of the celestial bard? Flying, drinking
and singing may be common to such pairs, but there ends the
In the Durvrtta Paddhati Swami emphasises on the need for
purity of character. Here, Swami deals with one who lacks
"jAthimAtrasharaNA bhahishkrutA: kEcidAdrutajakhanyakrutaya: !
rOshanA viparidhAvinO mudhAhrEpayanti janam vujjitahiya: !!"
-- Durvrtta Paddhati (11)
"The truly virtuous will shun all contact with those who though
well-born, commit evil deeds who are shunned in good society due
to their actions, are ill tempered and being unconscious of their
own guilt, swank about in society arrogantly."
Swami gives us a clear picture of who deserves to be served and
who does not. In the asevya Paddhati Swami states that birth alone
is not detrimental in people deserving service!
All of Swami's preachings are what He Practiced. Swami's humility and
respect to elders is unparalleled. In the following Sloka Swami goes
to the extent of stating that people who do not honour their elders
will never be served by good people!
"anAkalitamAnushyA: shamAsamsparshavarjitA: !
pratibhuddai: na sEvyantE pOrvadEvavirOdhina: !!"
-- Asevya Paddhati (10)
"Wise and good men would not serve those who show scant respect for
human values, lack tolerance and good behaviour and who do not honour
their forbears and elders."
Swami gives us inputs on how to lead a tranquil life -
"anantakhyAtisampanna: shuddhasatva: sudhIbhala: !
dhattE bhahumukham bhOgam shutidtAshtisthirAshaya: !!"
-- ibid (6)
"True knowledge, correct observances, virtuous conduct, sharp intellect,
courage of conviction and viewing the world through the lens of scriptures
with complete trust in God's dispensations will enable a person have
a tranquil, joyous life in this very world."
The following is an interesting comparison on Generosity and
"vadAnyashca kadaryashca gruhIta sthiralO bhata: !
svAnarthAn sancinOtyarthAn parAnarthairrayOjayan !!"
-- Vadhanyua paddhati (9)
"A miser hoards wealth in the delusion that it will remain
permanently with him. A generous person amasses wealth in the
hope that he can gift it away permanently to others."
All the translations are by Shri M.K. Srinivasan.
Subhasita Nivi clearly shows Swami's deep concern for us. He
warns us of different kinds of people, guides us as to whose
company has to be preferred and whose should be shun, specifies
the undesirable qualities to be discarded and desirable qualities
to be cultivated...the list can go on.
Swami in short has given us A-Z of all what we should do!!!
"Kavi Taarkika Simhaaya Kalyaana guna SaalinE!
SrimatE VenkateshAya VedAnta Gurave nama !!"
...To be continued!
dEsikan tiruvaDigaLE SaraNam
Praveena nAmni Ramanuja dasi