Tiruppavai Pasuram 6

ENGLISH TEXT

puḷḷum cilampina kān  puḷ araiyan kōyil |
 veḷḷai viḷi śangin pēr-aravam kēṭṭiḷaiyō ? |
piḷḷāy ezhundirāy | pēymulai nañju uṇḍu |
 kaḷḷa cakaṭam kalakku kazhiya  kāl ōcci |
veḷḷattu aravil tuyil amarnda vittinai |
 uḷḷatu koṇḍu munivargaḷum yogihaḷum |
meḷḷa ezhundu ari enna pēr aravam  |
 uḷḷam puhundu kuḷirndu ēlōr empāvāy ||

TRANSLATION

The birds are also chirping; can’t you hear in the Bird King’s temple
the thunderous sounds of the great white conch?
Awake, O Young maiden, ever contemplating in your mind
the One who drank the milk of Putana, the One who with a kick destroyed
Sakatasura, the One who is the Primal Cause of the whole cosmos,
and the One who reclines on the Serpent in the Milky Ocean;
the sages and the yogis have just arisen slowly from their yoga, loudly chanting
the names of Hari, resounding, let that Name enter our hearts and refresh us.

 WORD BY WORD MEANING

puḷḷum – also the birds;

cilampina kān  – are chirping;

puḷ araiyan kōyil – in the temple of the master of the king of birds (garuda);

veḷḷai viḷi śangin – white conch capable of attracting everyone’s attention;

pēr-aravam – thunderous sound;

kēṭṭiḷaiyō  ? – are you not able to hear?

piḷḷāy – (new to bhagavat vishaya)oh young maiden!

ezhundirāy- (quickly) get up;

 pēymulai nañju uṇḍu– drank (along with her soul) the poisoned milk of demoness(Disguised like a mother) putana;

kaḷḷa cakaṭam – the wicked sakatasura; (Asura/Demon who came in the form of a cart)

kalakku kazhiya– lose his form;

kāl ōcci – Raised his divine feet;

veḷḷattu– In the milky ocean;

aravil – On top of the divine serpent;

tuyil amarnda – reclining/resting;

vittinai – The supreme Lord who is the creator of the universe;

munivargaḷum – one who meditate (on the almighty);

yogigaḷum – Those who do service (kainkarya) as effect of their yoga;

uḷḷatu koṇḍu- place the Lord in their hearts;

meḷḷa ezhundu- get up slowly (without disturbing the supreme Lord inside)

ari enna- The divine name Hari: hari:

pēr aravam – Loud chanting resounding;

uḷḷam puhundu- entered our hearts;

kuḷirndu-  and refreshed;

INTRODUCTION

 The first five verses in thiruppavai were an introduction to this divine work where Andal mentioned that they have all the required prerequisite for undertaking the vow to attain the ultimate goal of servitude to Lord Kṛṣṇa. They are blessed with right time, acceptance from elders and also the deep wish to involve themselves in devotion but what are they waiting for?

 While trying to bathe in a river with heavy flow of water we try to hold on to others’ hands rather than enter alone; similarly before starting to enjoy the ocean of divine qualities of the Lord, Andal tries to wake up all Her gopika friends in the verses 6-15.  It is customary to surrender to the divine Feet of the Lord with the support of elders/masters/devotees (well-versed in Vedas).  As per Her vow in the second paasuram that they will not do anything against customs and traditions (seiyAdhana seyyOm), Andal indulges in waking up the gopis before actually proceeding towards the place of vratha.

 But when all gopikas have equal devotion towards Kṛṣṇa why will one sleep and others stand outside to wake her up?  This is due to the way each one has got involved in devotion.  Some of them are so much attracted by the divine qualities of Kṛṣṇa that they are mesmerized and hence unable to act (emotional devotees) whereas others are so passionate that they want to reach the goal someway as soon as possible (stand outside waking up the emotional devotees).

COMMENTARY

 puḷḷum cilampina kān  puḷ araiyan kōyil|

veḷḷai viḷi śangin pēr-aravam kēṭṭiḷaiyō ?

 Andal comes in front of a gopi’s house and tries to wake her up.  The gopi inside is not convinced that it has dawned even though others are awake.  So Andal gives further reasons to prove that it is time to wake up.  Don’t you hear the chirping birds, the thunderous sound of the white conch resounding from the temple of the master of garuda (king of bird’s)?

 piḷḷāy ezhundirāy

 Since you are new to devotion you think that you can enjoy the Lord alone.  But oh my friend please get up as it is joy only when we all enjoy together.  Please give us the joy of joining with you and cherishing both – the pranks of Kṛṣṇa and the way you enjoy the same. How did you all wake up wondered the gopi inside? The Hari Nama chanting of devotees resounding everywhere woke us up and gave us a refreshing feeling – says Andal.

 pēymulai nañju uṇḍu |

kaḷḷa cakaṭam kalakku kazhiya  kāl ōcci |
veḷḷattu aravil tuyil amarnda vittinai uḷḷatu koṇḍu munivargaḷum yogigaḷum meḷḷa ezhundu ari enna pēr aravam  |

 The munis and yogis (the two types of devotees- one who is always immersed in devotion and those who take part in services due to their deep devotion respectively) place in their hearts the Lord – the universal Creator who reclines on the divine serpent bed in the milky ocean, who descended as Kṛṣṇa and drank the poisoned milk of putana sucking out her soul and who destroyed sakatasura with a kick of His divine Feet; get up slowly (not disturbing the Lord inside) and chant the Hari Nama loudly;

 uḷḷam puhundu kuḷirndu

 That sound entered our hearts and refreshed us; So you also wake up and join our divine group;

 LESSON FOR THE DAY

 A good meal when enjoyed with friends and relatives gives greater joy than eating the same alone.  That is why Andal not wanting to enjoy the divine qualities of the almighty alone knocks at the door of each gopi and wakes her up to join in the divine experience from the 6th to 15th paasuram. 

 Andal in these verses reveals a divine secret.  Service to devotees is considered superior than service to God.  We are all the supreme Lord’s children.  A mother would want all the children to enjoy equally.  So when all of them join hands and entertain the mother she will be most delighted.

 So experiencing and enjoying the divine qualities of the Lord in groups with like-minded devotees gives happiness to both the devotees and the Lord Himself.