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Sri:
Srimathe ramanujaya namah:
Srimathe nigamantha maha desikaya namah:
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Sri Ranganatha Padhuka Sahasram

PADDHATHI #3: Greatness of Paaduka (cont..)

Prabhaava Patthadhi





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Sloka #81

81. thvayaIva nithyam maNipAdharakshE! rAjanvathIsruShtiriyam prajAnAm sthrIrAjyadhOShaprashamAya nUnam nirdhishyasE nAThavisheShaNEna

Meaning (translated by Sri. U.Ve. V.N. Vedanta Desikan)

Oh Paaduka! The creation of all this world is vested in You. (Brahma does the job, wearing You on his head). But then lest a stigma in the sense of a lady presiding over the kingdom should vex the people of the world, You are referred to as (Ranga) Nathapaduka, as if to add a male master's name to You!

Special Notes from Sri. U.Ve. V. Sadagopan

1) UtthamUr Swamy's anubhavam : Here Swami Desikan addresses the objection of those , who say that PaadhukhAs can not serve as the empress of the Universe since their gender is feminine. Swami Desikan says: " Oh MaNi PaadhukhE ! You rule over the entire world and in the beginning create all living (chetanA ) and inanimate (achEtanA ) beings of this world. Any objection as to how You can perform such an impossible act because of Your status as a lady is dispelled , when the objector understands that Your real name is Naatha ( RanganAtha ) PaadhukhAs. The addition of Your Lord's name as a prefix before Your name serves to solve this riddle ".

2) Srimadh Andavan's anubhavam : Oh PaadhhukE ! In the matter of ruling this universe, you are even more skilled than Your Lord .Even then , the people refer to You as PerumAL Paadhukhai . The reason is that AnAyakam ( leaderlessness), Bahu Naayakam ( Leadership by many ), Sisu Naayakam ( Leadership by a child ) and SthrI Naayakam ( Ruling by Amazon like women) are considered by SaasthrAs to be not auspicious. Therefore, people attach the name of Your Lord to remove any hint of dhOsham to Your rule.

The inner meaning is that AchAryAs are superior to PerumAL and yet they are subordinate to their Lord and hence they are recognized as PerumAL's manishyALs .

3) Swami satisfies the critics who are doubtful about the efficacy of a land ruled by a Woman , even if She may be very competent (SthrIrAjya DhOsham ). He says these doubts are quelled by "Naatha VisEshaNam " , the insignia of PerumAL's name being attached to the Paadhukhais as Naatha Paadhukhais...V.S

------------------------------------------------------------------------ Srimate Sri Laksminrisimha Divya Paduka Sevaka Srivan Satakopa Sri Narayana Yatindra Mahadesikaya Nama

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Sloka #82

82.biBharShi Nithyam MaNipAdhukE! thvam vishvamBharam DhAma nijEna BhUmnA thavAnuBhAvashchuLakIkruthOyam BhaktaIrajasram BhavatIm dhaDhAnaI:

Meaning (translated by Sri. U.Ve. V.N. Vedanta Desikan)

Oh Paaduka! You permanently bear the Lord (who Himself bears all the worlds) by Your intrinsic greatness; but then this greatness is a moiety-a palmful- compared to the greatness the devotees acquire by reason of their bearing You on their heads!

Note: This is not belittling the Paaduka by any stretch of imagination even. Bhaktas derive their greatness now only from Paaduka. They are more praiseworthy. That is the implication here.

Special Notes from Sri. U.Ve. V. Sadagopan

1) UtthamUr Swamy's anubhavam: Oh Gem-bedecked PaadhukhE! You carry always the Lord on Your back , who carries the world itself ! This is possible because of Your unique status and glory. Your devotees , who bear You on their heads fully understand this glorious attribute of Yours.

2) Srimadh Andavan's anubhavam: Three things are compared here. The Lord carries the world; PaadhukhA carries the Lord; BhakthAs carry the PaadhukhA on their heads . The glory of the BhakthAs carrying You on their siras is smaller than that of Yours carrying PerumAL on Your back.

The inner meaning is that PerumAL Bhakthar's Bhakthars are superior to PerumAl's Bhakthars . Thirumazhisai AzhwAr refers to this tattvam in his aruLiccheyalkaL as : yEtthi iruppaarai vellumE maRRavarai saatthi iruppAr tavam "

3) Swami states here that BhakthAs , who adorn Paadhukhais o on their heads make the glory of Paadhukais bearing the Lord on its back pale into insignificance compared to their own glories .Swami says here that the measure of that glory of PaadhukhA is like the measure of water held in the palm of a man's hand (ChuLakam )compared to the infinitude of an Ocean ....V.S

------------------------------------------------------------------------ Srimate Sri Laksminrisimha Divya Paduka Sevaka Srivan Satakopa Sri Narayana Yatindra Mahadesikaya Nama

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Sloka #83

83. parasya pumsa: padhasannikarShE thulyADhikArAm maNipAdhukE! thvAm utthamsayanthi svayamutthamangaI: shEShAsamam shEShagaruthmadhAdhyA:

Meaning (translated by Sri. U.Ve. V.N. Vedanta Desikan)

Oh Paaduka! In being proximate to the feet of the Supreme Lord, Nithyasooris like Adisesha and Garuda are equal to You. (The Lord's feet are placed on these too on occassions). Nevertheless they would bear You on their heads, somewhat as Parivatta-honour. You become crown-like ornament for other Nityasooris.

Special Notes from Sri. U.Ve. V. Sadagopan

1) UtthamUr Swamy's anubhavam: although some Nitya Sooris like Garudan and Adhi Seshaa have authority and status, their situation is improved by adorning You ( PaadhukhE ) on their heads .Your uplifting power can be inferred from this happening . Garudan and Adhi Seshan in total service to Your Lord wear You with Bhakthi on their heads like a parivattam to celebrate Your lofty status.

2) Srimadh Andavan's anubhavam: Oh MaNi PaadhukE ! Garudan , Adhi Seshan and Yourself have the same kind of nithya- Kaimkaryam to Your Lord .Inspite of it , they do not treat You as their equals; they announce to the world about Your exalted status by adorning You on their heads like a parivattam .

3) The same kind of nithya-kaimkaryam performed by Garudan , Adhi Seshan and the MaNi Paadhukhais is at the sacred feet of the Lord . That gives them all ThulyAdhikAram . Inspite of it , Garudan and Adhi Seshan place You on their heads (utthamAngai:) like the decorative parivattam ( sEshAsamam utthamsayanthi ). Swami Desikan states that " Sesha GaruUtthmadhAdhya: thvAm svayam utthamAngai: uttamsayanthi ".Nobody tells or commands or instructs them to adorn the PaadhukhAs on their noble heads . Recognizing the sacredness of the Lord's PaadhukhAs , they instinctively act by themselves(svayam )..V.S

------------------------------------------------------------------------ Srimate Sri Laksminrisimha Divya Paduka Sevaka Srivan Satakopa Sri Narayana Yatindra Mahadesikaya Nama

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Sloka #84

84. MukundhpAdhAmbhujaDhAriNi!thvAm mOhAdhanutthamsayathAm janAnAm MUrdhni sThithA dhurlipayO Bhavanthi prashasthavarNAvaLayasthadhIyA:

Meaning (translated by Sri. U.Ve. V.N. Vedanta Desikan)

Oh Paaduka! The menfolk, who out of a foolish vanity, do not care to bear You on their heads, have become destined to get their fate-letters which were good and favourable, to be transformed into bad and evil-foreboding! (we can change our fate favourably by bearing Sataari)

Special Notes from Sri. U.Ve. V. Sadagopan

1) UtthamUr Swamy's anubhavam: Oh the holy Paadhukhais of MukundhA ! There are some, who out of ego and arrogance stay away from wearing You on their heads . For those, even the auspicious writings on their skulls by BrahmA turn into inauspicious writings and cause them harm. These doubters of Your glory experience many hardships here on earth .

2) The inner meaning of this slOkam is that the good Brahma lipi on the head of one , who does not celebrate NammAzhwAr turns from good to bad . The situation referred to here is just the opposite to that alluded in slOkam 50 . There Swami Desikan mentioned that through its powers , the PaadhukhAs transform bad Brahma Lipi into good Lipi ,when they adorn the head of a devotee.

3) In the previous slOkam, Swami Desikan stated : "Sesha- GaruthmadhaadhyA: svayam utthamAngai: sEshasamam thvAm UTTAMSAYANTHI . He described NithyasUris like Adhi Seshan and Garudan by their own volition adorning the Paadhukhais as Parivattam and enhancing their status . Here, Swami talks about those deluded ones , who push away the Paadhukhais and do not offer it the reverence that it requires : " thvAm mOhAth ANUTTHAMSAYATHAAM JanAnAm Murdhni sthithA: prasastha Varna aavaLaya: dhurlipaya:". Swami Desikan compares the status of the Uttamsayantha: (wearers of the Paadhukhais) with anutthamsayantha: ( those who do not wear the Paadhukhais out of arrogance) and points out that even the good Brahma Lipi on their skulls change to bad ones (dhurlipi:) ...V.S

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Sloka #85

85. BhUmi: shrutInAm Bhuvanasya DhAthrI guNaIrananthA vipulA viBhUthyA sThirA svayam pAlayithum kshamA na: sarvamsahA shOuripadhAvani! thvam

Meaning (translated by Sri. U.Ve. V.N. Vedanta Desikan)

Oh Paaduka! You are the object of praise for the Vedas; the protector of the world, possessor of endless qualities, of vast affluence, of firm nature, and competent to offer protection to us. You are forbearing too. You are veritable Bhoomi Devi

Special Notes from Sri. U.Ve. V. Sadagopan

1) UtthamUr Swamy's anubhavam : Oh VishNu PaadhukhE ! You are the object of sthuthi by the VedAs .The words they use to praise BhUmi Devi fit you perfectly . The VedAs say that Bhumi Devi has limitmess auspicious qualities , protects all lives and is forbearing .She is also saluted as being rich beyond imagination .All these sthuthis of Bhumi Devi fit you very well and You like Her excuse all of our trespasses.

2) Swami Desikan's choice of words are exquisite here . He says : Souri PadhAvani ! thvam SruthInAm BhUmi: (Oh Lord's PaadhukE ! Thou art the house of all sruthis); Bhuvanasya DhAthri ( Thou art the protector of the janthus of the Universe ); GuNai: ananthA ( Thou art limitless in Your kalyANa GuNams); VibhUthyA VipulA ( Thou art abundant in riches);Thvam sthirA ( Thou art firm and resolute in helping us); Na: paalayithum KshamA ( Thou art therefore fit to come to our rescue )...V.S

3) The reference to BhUmi Devi's and by comparison the PaadhukhAs' ananthathvam (limitlessness)and vastness in riches ( viplA vibhUthyA:) is an echo of the first Rk of the BhUmi Sooktham:

" BhumirbhUmnA dhyaou variNA anthariksham mahithvA "

This passage speaks about the vastness of the expanse of Bhumi PirAtti , Her radiance that makes Her the object of worship by all and Her unparalleled Mahimai...V.S

4) The choice of Naamams for Bhumi Devi by Swami Desikan and an extension of them to the holy Paadhukhai is reminecent of the passages from his Sri BhUstuthi . Some of these passages associated with the nAmAs for BhUmi PirAtti fitting the PaadhukhA are: (avadhIm) KshamAyA: = the limit of forbearance sulabhaanukampA = One who confers Her grace readily

KaamadhEnu = Wish Fulfiller akhila DhAriNi = One who bears all things of the Universe

Sarvam SahA = One who bears with all the trespasses

VipulA = One who is abundant with riches

ananthA - dhAthri = limitless and One who bears all.

Swami Concludes one of the BhU Sthuthi slOkams with the statement : NaamAnyamUni kathayanthi TavAnubhAvam ( These NaamAs of yours glorify Your Mahimai). When Swami Desikan compares Paadhukhais to Bhumi Piraatti , these are the GuNAs that he has in mind ...V.S

------------------------------------------------------------------------ Srimate Sri Laksminrisimha Divya Paduka Sevaka Srivan Satakopa Sri Narayana Yatindra Mahadesikaya Nama:

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Sloka #86

86. sThairyam kulakshONiBhruthAm viDhathsE sheShAdhayasthvAm shirasA vahanthi PadhaprasUthA paramasya pumsa: pruThvI mahimnA maNipAdhukE! thvam

Meaning (translated by Sri. U.Ve. V.N. Vedanta Desikan)

Oh Paaduka! You are Bhoomi verily on many more grounds. You give a firm stationing to mammoth mountains (to great royal personages too); You are borne by Adisesha; You are associated with the Lord's feet and You are also great in powers.

Special Notes from Sri. U.Ve. V. Sadagopan

1)UttamUr Swamy's anubhavam: Oh MaNi PaadhukhE ! You resemble BhUmi Devi in other ways too in displaying your magnanimous stature. For instance, You provide stability to great kings , who worship You just as BhUmi Devi supports giant mountains. You are borne on Adhi SeshA's head just as he bears Mother Earth . You are seen at the feet of the Lord offering service just as BhUmi Devi does . Through all these qualities , You have reached a noble status that is not matched by any others .

2)Srimadh Andavan's anubhavam: Oh PaadhukhE ! You stabilize the wealth of Kings born in good vamsams , just as Bhumi Devi provides stability to parvatha rAjAs.Adhi Seshan shows his respect by carrying You on his head. Lord RanganathA wears You on His lotus feet and moves around on His duties. Thus , Your glories are limitless . Swami Desikan here refers to the fact that BhUmi was generated from the Lord's sacred feet and hence She is seen there like the Paadhukhais .

3) Swami Desikan observes here that paadhukai is " Prithvee ". Prithvee has two meanings : (a) BhUmi (b)that which is strong and Firm . Swamy Desikan states : "MaNi PaadhukhE ! thvam mahimnA Prithvee". Swamy points out here that the Paadhukhai is firm and strong like the BhUmi bearing effortlessly great parvathams .Reflection on this and other Mahimais , PaadhukhA reminds Swami Desikan of BhUmi Devi......V.S

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Sloka #87

87. daithyADhipAnAm balinAm kirItA nikshEpaNam thE yadhi nABhyanandhan rangEshapAdhAvani! rangaDhAmnassOpAnathAm prApya vahanthyamI thvAm

Meaning (translated by Sri. U.Ve. V.N. Vedanta Desikan)

Oh Paaduka! In the case of Asura chiefs who, out of haughtiness born of an uncommon might, do not care to bow their crowned heads to You, You mete out a suitable fate; the gems in their crowns are studded in the steps to Sri Rangavimana, so that You will step out on them

Special Notes from Sri. U.Ve. V. Sadagopan

(1) UtthamUr Swamy"s anubhavam : Oh RanganAthA's PaadhukhE ! The asurAs out of their arrogance elect not to receive You on their crowned-heads.They experience all calamities and ultimately You win over them and make the gems from their crowns become engraved on the holy steps leading to the sanctum- sanctorium of Lord RanganAthA's temple at Srirangam . Your Lord steps on those gems while standing on You as he goes out on His errands of protecting His BhakthAs and destroying their enemies . Out of Your quality of Mercy , You save the asurAs this way .

(2) Srimadh Andavan 's anubhavam : Responding to the arrogance of the mighty asurAs , who refuse to place You on their heads , Your Lord yanks their crowns and paves the gems from thier crowns in to the steps of Sriranga VimAnam .Now , those gems from the crowns bear You on their heads as You transport Your Lord on His daily duties. The inner meaning is that RaavaNan and other arrogant asurAs lost all their Isvaryams because they did not pay heed to the advice of the righteous .

(3) The RangEsa PaadhAvani ( Lord RangarAjan's Paadhukhais) is addressed by Swamy Desikan here and is briefed on the fate of the asurA chieftains , when they did not recieve them (Paadhukhais) with joy on their (asurA's ) crowned heads . Swami describes the fate symbolically with the description , " amee RangadhAmna: sOpanathAm prApya thvAm vahanthi " ( these gems from the crowns of the defiant asurAs end up as paving material for the holy steps of Sriranga VimAnam .In the jeweler's art , this type of work is called Izhaippu vElai......( V.S )

------------------------------------------------------------------------ Srimate Sri Laksminrisimha Divya Paduka Sevaka Srivan Satakopa Sri Narayana Yatindra Mahadesikaya Nama:

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Sloka #88

88. shEShO garuthmAn maNipAdhapITI thvam chEthi pAdhAvani! vishvamAnyA: thulyADhikArA yadhi kinnu santha: thvAmEva nithyam shirasA vahanthi

Meaning (translated by Sri. U.Ve. V.N. Vedanta Desikan)

Oh Paaduka! Adishesha, Garuda, the gem-studded foot-base in the lotus shape and yourself are all said to be equals in service-rights. May it be so! But then why do great people accord to You the high previlege of bearing You on their heads, discarding the others?

Special Notes from Sri. U.Ve. V. Sadagopan

(1) Sri UtthamUr Swamy's anubhaavam: Oh Dhivya PaadhukhE ! AdhisEshA , GarudA , the gem-studded foot rest of Your Lord and Yourself have a common kainkaryam , (Viz): Carrying the Lord's Thiruvadi .Thus all of you have equal status . Inspite of this, the wise people of the world give You a status that is superior to all the other three and wear You alone on their heads .This is because of Your uncontested status arising from Your eternal proximity to Your Lord's sacred feet .

(2) Srimadh Andavan's anubhavam : Although AdhisEshan , Garudan and the Paadham-thAngi (foot rest ) and the paadhukahai of the Lord have samAdhikAram , the great Ones wear the Lord's Paadhukhais on their heads .Therefore You are superior . The inner meaning is : There are many NithyasUris and yet there is none among them , who has helped the world as Swami NammAzhwAr , the Paadhukhai of the Lord .

(3) All the four ( AdhiisEshan , Garudan, Foot-rest and the Paadhukhai ) are visvamAnya: ( celebrated by the World . They are also "ThulyAdhikAris"( Same Kaimkarya status). Yet , "santha: thvAmEva sirasA vahanthi" ( the periyaVALs) adorn you alone on their heads . Swamy asks a rhetorical question : " kinnu?" (Why ) and lets us decide .

------------------------------------------------------------------------ Srimate Sri Laksminrisimha Divya Paduka Sevaka Srivan Satakopa Sri Narayana Yatindra Mahadesikaya Nama:

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Sloka #89

89. Parasya pumsa: paramam padam thath biBharShi nithyam maNipAdhukE! Thvam anyAdhrushAm vyOmasadhAm padhAni thvayyAyathanthE yadhidham na chitram

Meaning (translated by Sri. U.Ve. V.N. Vedanta Desikan)

Oh Paaduka! The fact that You bear the feet of the Supreme Lord -that is Paramapada-makes it obvious that the abodes of all gods other than the Supreme are but at Your disposal.

Special Notes from Sri. U.Ve. V. Sadagopan

(1)In this slOkam , Swami Desikan answers the question he asked in the previos slOkam : " ThulyAdhikArA yadhi KINNU Santha: thvAmEva nithyam sirasA vahanthi?"( If all the four of you are same in status , how come the great Ones wear always only You on their heads ?). Swamy gives two closely realted answers for his own question : (1) Thvam Parasya Pumsa:tath Paramam Padham nithyam BhiBarshi( You wear those famous feet of the Supreme Lord on Your head (2) anyAdhrusAM vyAmOdhasAm padhAni thvayi aayathanthE { You hold suzeranity (Lordship) over all other devathAs /nithyasooris. It is no wonder therefore all the puNyasAlis wear You alone on their heads..V.S

(2) Swamy Desikan plays with the double meaning of the word , Padham . This word can mean either foot or status (padhavi) as in Brahma Padham or Brahma Pattam .

(3)Srimadh Andavan's anubhavam: Oh PaadhukhE ! when the Lord's dhivya Padham ( Thiruvadi) is under your juridsdiction (adhInam ) , it is no wonder that the Pattams of every one of the anya dEvathAs are under your control .

(4)UtthamUr Swamy's anubhavam: Oh MaNi PaadhukhE ! You are supporting the celebrated lotus feet of Your Lord always. Those , who are not blessed like You obtain their exalted status and rank through Your mighty grace. They owe truly their blessings to You .

------------------------------------------------------------------------ Srimate Sri Laksminrisimha Divya Paduka Sevaka Srivan Satakopa Sri Narayana Yatindra Mahadesikaya Nama:

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Sloka #90

90. padoU murArE: sharaNam prajanAm thayOsthadevAsi padhAvani! Thvam sharaNyathAyAsthvamananyarakshA samdhrushyasE vishramaBhUmirekA

Meaning (translated by Sri. U.Ve. V.N. Vedanta Desikan)

Oh Paaduka! The Lord's feet are the protecting authority for all people. But You protect those feet. You alone remain in no need of protection by another! Thus You are the ultimate force for protection.

Special Notes from Sri. U.Ve. V. Sadagopan

(1) UtthamUr Swamy's anubhavam : Oh MurAri PaadhukhE ! You protect the Lord's sacred feet. You do not however seek anyone to protect You . In this regard, You outshine all classes of protectors and have become an institution by Yourself.

(2) Srimadh Andavan's anubhavam : Oh PaadhukhE ! You protect the feet of the Lord , who protects all the worlds. You do not have any protector .Therefore , it is clear that the duty of protection stops at Your door.

(3) Swamy develops the theme of protection beautifully in this slOkam . First he says:" MurArE: Paadhou prajAnAm SaraNam ( The Lord's feet are the protector for the people)". Next, he points out : " thvamEva tayO : tath asi ( For those feet You become that /You become the protector). One is reminded of the Veda Vaakhyam , "Tath Tvam asi " , as one reflects on the usage of the words elsewhere in this slOkma: "thvamEva TayO; tath asi" Swami now infers : "ananya rakshA tvam yEkA SaranyathayA visrama bhUmi: sandhrusayasE ( You who have no protector become the abode of what is known as protection of others )" .Visrama BhUmi: means the place of rest ; the deed of protection comes to rest in the PaadhukhAs .The Paadhukhais become SaraNAlayam .......(V.S)

------------------------------------------------------------------------ Srimate Sri Laksminrisimha Divya Paduka Sevaka Srivan Satakopa Sri Narayana Yatindra Mahadesikaya Nama:

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