Friday, October 29, 2010


Gopalakrishna Bharati, a well known composer of songs on Chidambara NatarAja is the supporting force for me to write this article. We will get the siva kataksham (or the blessings of Lord Shiva) by reading through his lines.

A man (refers to the reader) asks a saint (Gopalakrishna Bharati), "Pranaams to you, respectable Saint. I want to attain mOksham (salvation). I have neither done any poojas nor have observed fastings. I completely surrender to you to show me the path towards the ultimate reality."

Saint answers, "My dear disciple, I am so happy on hearing these words from you. Dont worry. Just listen. I will show you the way to attain your goal."

siva lOkha nathanai kandu sEvithiduvOm vAreer

bhava bayangalai pOkki avar parama padhatthai koduppar - andha
siva lOkha nathanai kandu sEvithiduvOm vAreer

arpa sugathai ninaindhOm aran thiruvadi marandhOm
karpidhamAna prapancham idhai kAnal neer pOlE yennin yenni

mAnuda jenmam kodutthAr thannai vaNanga karangaL aLithAr
thEnum pAlum pOlE sendru thEradiyil nindru kondu
siva lOkha nathanai kandu sEvithiduvOm vAreer

"Lets go and pray to the lord of the shiva lOkham. He will grant salvation and will destroy the fear and sorrows. All these days we were thinking of the cheap worldly pleasures and we forget his (shiva's) lotus feet. We were keeping on thinking about the temporal universe which is like a mirage. The lord gave us this human birth, hands to worship Him. Lets all go to the thEr adi (holy car in the chidambaram temple) like freely flowing milk and honey and pray to the Lord".
Saying so the saint sees the face of the disciple.

Disciple asks "I understood that surrendering totally to the Lord will grant us salvation. Could you please elaborate about the chidambaram sthalam that you mentioned in the previous song?"

Saint says, "Here it is."

thillai sthalam endru solla thodanginal
illai piravi piniyum paapamum

solla thagum ithuvE siva lOkham
yeLLathanai aram seyyil amOgam

aagama vEda purAnangaL saathiram
arul thavam purivArkku aruliya paathiram
aalayam aayirathettinil nEthiram
Ananda thAndavam aadiya kshethiram

parama ragasiyam ondru pArkalAm
bala krishnan kavi pAda kEtkalAm
karma vinaigaL anaithayum pOkkalAm
kasadatthu mukthiyum undAgalAm

"If you start to say thillai (chidambaram) then there is no more re birth, disease and sin. One can say that this ksetra is the siva lokham (or abode of shiva). If you do a little amount (like a grain called yeL) of good then it is awesome. Shiva is the one who grants blessings to those who do a sincere meditation on him as mentioned in the ancient works (vEdAs, purAnAs, sAstrAs, AgamAs). This sthalam where shiva has performed aananda thandavam (blissful dance) is vital among thousands of other temples as an eye in our body. You can see a big secret (chidambara rahasyam!), hear songs sung by balakrishnan (the composer), drive away all the deeds (karma) and its consequences (vinaigaL) and at last you can get the salvation."

Disciple's happieness knew no bounds. He asked, "Thats nice to hear about Chidambaram. Could you please tell about the presiding deity over there?".

The saint became so happy on seeing the curiosity of his disciple. He said,

sabhApatikku vERu deivam samAnamAgumA thillai
sabhApatikku vERu deivam samAnamAgumA ?

kripAnidhi ivarai pOla kidaikkumO indha dhArani thannil

oru dharam siva chidambaram yendru sonnal pOdhume
paragathi pera vEru punyam panna vEnuma?
ariya pulaiyar moovar padham adaindhAr yendrE purAnam
arindhu solla kEttOm Gopalakrishnan pAdum thillai

sabhApatikku vERu deivam samAnamAgumA ?

"Will any other deity become equal to sabhapathi (lord of the kanaga sabai - Chidambaram)? One cannot find a more graceful god like him in this world. You need not do any other good deeds to attain salvation. Just if you chant "siva chidambaram" once, thats enough. Three great poets (appar, sundarar, sambandhar) have attained salvation by chanting the name of Shiva as told in the puranam. He is in the thillai sthalam about which Gopalakrishnan (saint) is singing."

Disciple was moved to tears. He then asked, "What is Aanandam?"

There was a quick reply from the saint that if we see the lotus feet of Lord Nataraja in the dancing posture, it is the real bliss (Anandam). It was with the lines "aadiya paadha dharisanam kandal aanandam"

The next question from the disciple was "Who is mightier?"

Saint said, "Mightiest among all is the person who gets the grace of Ponnambalan (Nataraja). By having houses, cows, goats, money in this world can one become the mightiest?" Saying so he sung the following lines.

pArukkul veedugal maadugal aadugal panam irundhal avan periyavanAvanO?
yArukku ponnambalan kripai irukkudho avanE periyavanAm

Disciple said, "Thank you my beloved guru. You have enlightened me on the ultimate reality. I would like you to say when there will be an end to all the sufferings of this kali yuga"

The saint sings,

kanaka sabApathi dharisanam oru nAl kandAl kali theerum

sanaka mahA muni kaithozhudhetthiya dinakara kOti thEjOmayam aagiya

kanaka sabApathi dharisanam oru nAl kandAl kali theerum

parpala yojanai seiyvathum thollai
paragathi adayavum paadhyamum illai
arputhamaagavE aangoru sollai
aniyum gopalakrishnan paniyum thillai

kanaka sabApathi dharisanam oru nAl kandAl kali theerum

"One day if we see the darshan of kanaka sabapathi, all the sufferings would be put to an end. Great sages like sanaka have worshipped the lord, who is as bright as 1000 suns. If we keep on thinking a lot about things other than the lord, it will create a lot of problems. It wont help us to get the path towards salvation. There is one great word "thillai" which will help us in attaining salvation."

"Oh guru! I can understand the greatness of Thillai sthalam and of Nataraja. It would be great if you tell how Nataraja will dance."

The guru sings,

thA thai yendrAduvAr avar thath thith thai yendrAduvAr
thA thai yendrAduvAr avar thath thith thai yendrAduvAr
thakita thakita thai yendrAduvAr avar jam thakita thai yendrAduvar
dheem tharikita thai yendrAduvAr avar jam tharikita thai yendrAduvar

Adhi parAparam aagiya chith aanandam kondoru kAlai yeduthu

anda charAcharam yengum nadunga
aadhi sEdanAr mudigaL nerunga
pAr pugazhum thillai chidambara nathan
balakrishnan panindhEthiya paagan

"He will dance with the jathis. He will dance with one leg raised and with pure bliss. When he dances, the entire univers will feel the vibration. Lord Vishnu's serpant, Aadhi sEshan's head will also dance. He is the one who is praised by Gopalakrishnan and the whole universe."

Now the disciple could experience the aananda thandavam of Lord Shiva. He wanted to confirm with the guru whether his experiences were right. o he asks his guru to tell about the ananda thandava experience.

Guru says, "I am feeling so happy on seeing the dance of Lord shiva. The sages like Sanaka, Sanandana, SanAthana, SanathkumAra were all singing. Lord Brahmma is putting the taalaas. About 3000 (thillai vAzh moovAyirathOr) people are celebrating the occasion daily. Nandi, Bringi and other Siva gaNangaL came together to witness the occasion. Sage Narada and sage Tumburu were singing. Not only there was a feast for the ears but also for the stomach. All the dEvas are enjoying themselves by having the divine food. Maha vishnu was playing the Maddalam (drum) and Shiva was dancing with all these celebrations happily."

These were captured in the following lines.

kanaka sabhai thirunadanam kandu kaLithu Anandam adaindhEn

sanakasanandana munivarum pAda
chatur muka dEvanum taalangaL pOda
dhinamum moovAyiram pErum kondAda
dhith thOm thOm thaka thOm thOm dhimi thOm thOm thakita thadhimithOm yendru
kanaka sabhai thirunadanam kandu kaLithu Anandam adaindhEn

nandi bringi siva gaNangaLum kooda
nArada thumburu sangeetham pAda
pandhi pandhi yaai amarar koNdAda
gopalakrishnan matthalam pOda aadiya
kanaka sabhai thirunadanam kandu kaLithu Anandam adaindhEn

The disciple saluted the guru and started to meditate upon Nataraja and there by attained salvation.

Hope I was able to provide a picture of the Aananda thandavam and let us all pray to the Kanaga sabapathi to attain the state of Divine Bliss and DivineBlessings (Siva katAksham).


Kalyan said...
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Kalyan said...

Very good imagination. Just see if it is possible to visualise the Vaggeyakkarar I.e., Bharathy to seek Anandam and the songs come out at each stage of his evolution to enlightenment.