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KAnchi ParamAchArya satsangham

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Selections from the Tamil book 'deyvaththin kural' vol.6
Great life with the Sixteen fortunes
pages 003-008
upAyam--means, for all vighnam--hurdles, to leave

At the time when kalvi--(Tamizh) education, starts, at kalyANa-kAlam--wedding time, when starting to a place on a new occasion, in yuddha-samayam--time of war,--why thus go on enumerating one by one?--it can be said as 'in sakala-kArya--all actions'. In all actions--sakala-kAryam, for someone there arises no hurdle at all.

विद्यारंभे विवाहे च प्रवेशे निर्गमे तथा ।
संग्रामे सर्वकार्येषु विघ्नस्तस्य न जायते ॥

vidyAraMbhe vivAhe cha praveshe nirgame tathA |
saMgrAme sarvakAryeShu vighnastasya na jAyate ||

vidyAraMbhe--when vidyA--education, starts; brahmacharya Ashramam--life of bachelorhood, from that time; during the time when one is vahin--bearing the burden, of this Ashramam, no vighnam--hurdle, will befall him.

vivAhe cha--during the time of kalyANam--wedding; that is, in the gRhasthAshramam--householder stage, too, no hurdle will befall him.

• Since only very svalpa--tiny number, of people take to saMnyAshramam--stage of the ascetics, in mentioning the brahmacharya--gRhasthAshramas, it becomes equivalent to mentioning the entire life of a manuShya--man. For the entire life, there will be no hurdles for him.

• What is vAzhkkai--(Tamizh) life? Only different dinusu--(Tamizh) kinds of chalanam--movement. Only changing, by being at various kinds of kArya--actions, by the manas--mind, vAk--speech, sharIram--body, buddhi--intellect, and paNam--(Tamizh) money, with the consideration that what is there now is not going to be there tomorrow.

• It can be understood if one does some Alochanam--reflection, that life is nothing but movement. Among these (movements), only the movement done by the sharIram is explicit. Even there, we move the entire sharIram from one place to another and do-prayANam--travel. Only that is explicit to us as the mukhya--important, movement. Only that is mentioned as praveshe nirgame tathA. pravesham is to enter a place; nirgamam is going out of a place.

In this way, whatever the kind of movement, we only do-pravesham--get into, a viShayam--thing. In that action, we also get out of something. In all these (movements), for someone no hurdle will befall.

• I said that life is a chalanam--movement. Another definition is also mentioned (for it). In the patrikAs--magazines, only that definition is talked about widely. We hear much about vAzhkkaip pOrATTam--(Tamizh) the strugle of life. Darwin's theory, Herbert Spencer's theory--all only speak about how the jIva-kulam--lineage/class of life has shaped up and survived only by pOrATTam--struggle.

If one thinks over it, it will be known that chalanam--movement, and pOrATTam--struggle, have connection to each other.

• Only when there is chalanam for just one jIvan--man, and all others remain without chalanam, this one man can do-saMchAram--wander about, in sukham--comfort, as iShTa--he likes. (I include all kinds of movements here). But then, is that so in vAstavam--reality? For all the jIvarAsi--living beings, there is ceaseless movement.

• Even in the achetana vastu--inanimate things, it is all chalanam--movement! And within an atom, with the speed of electricity, sadA saMchAram--continuous movement, is taking place.

• If in this way, many lives and jaDa vastu--inert things, keep moving at the same time, there will only be clashes among them? Struggle--pOrATTam, is only clashes, right?

• If we go further down, the very fact that a jIvan or a vastu gets chalanam, only indicates its struggle. Is it not very well explicit that if shAntam--peace, arises, we will remain nichchalana--still/without movement? Therefore, it follows that if there is chalanam, there will be no shAnti. The stage of being without shAnti is what is pOrATTam--struggle. Don't we say it in opposite terms as war and peace?

• Although life itself is pOrATTam--struggle, the way it is explicit is only when one fights against another. Only that is mentioned as saMgrAme. saMgrAmam is yuddham--opposition/fight/war.

That someone will not get hurdles in yuddham. He will shine as a jayashAli--one who accomplishes victory.

• If we stretch it and take the meaning, it will be that one will be victorious, without any hurdles, in the aneka--many, pOkkuvaratthu--movements, that are pravesha-nirgama--enter and exit, and in sakala-vida pOrATTam--all kinds of struggles, of life.

• Stretching the meaning still further, we can also have it as, 'one would attain the Atma samAdhi, which is the pUrNa-sthiti--complete state, with no chalanam and pOrATTam.' Just as brahmacharyam by vidyAraMbh and gRhasthAshramam by vivAham is mentioned, we can have the meaning that thereafter it mentions the saMnyAsAshramam that takes one into the state of samAdhi.

• Why mention many as 'in this--in that' or 'in this Ashramam--in that Ashramam'? Compressing everything into (a single phrase) the shloka--verse, is ended with the statement that sarvakAryeShu--in all actions, there is no hurdle, that is, only victory. for him.

sarvakAryeShu vighnastasya na jAyate

• tasya--for him; sarva-kAryeShu--in all actions; vighna--hurdle; na jAyate--does not occur.

• Only when many things are mentioned when explaining something, it sticks in our mind. If it just said, 'no hurdles would arise in all actions', that won't look much impressive to us. Only when it is said, 'It (hurdle) will not arise in this, in that' and so on, the statement would get deeply in mind, so it is mentioned in that way.

• 'sarvakAryeShu vighnastasya na jAyate'--for him, no hurdle arises in all his actions.

For whom? The answer lies in the previous line; and that line goes like this:

षोडशैतानि नामानि यः पठेच्छृणुयादपि ।

ShoDashaitAni nAmAni yaH paThechChRuNuyAdapi |

षोडश एतानि नामानि यः पठेत् शृणुयाद् अपि ।

ShoDasha etAni nAmAni yaH paThet shRuNuyAd api |

• etAni--this, that is what is told before this line; ShoDasha nAmAni--sixteen names; yaH--one who; paThet--reads; api--it should be taken to mean 'or' here; shRuNuyAd--listens to;

• To one who either reads these sixteen names, or listens to another person reading these names, only to him, no vighnam--hurdle, arises in sarva kArya--all actions: vighnastasya na jAyate.

paDippavar, kETpavar--(Tamizh) reader and listener, is a generally spoken statement. Texts like a great purANam or upAkhyAnam--subordinate story/tale, an upanyAsa kartA--lecturer, will read aloud and explain the meaning; and others will listen to him. Based on that has come the vachanam--statement, paDippavar-kETpavar, vaktA-shrotA.

• But then here, the subject is not a great puranic story. The subject is only the sixteen names. So, although it is said using the general statement of reading and listening, the tAtparyam--purport, is that every one should memorize all those sixteen names and chant them.

• Only those who do not memozise, can read them from a book or listen to someone reading them.

In this way, for someone who reads these sixteen nAmAs--names, or listens to them, or in-shreShTa--more excellently, chants them from memory, to that person, there will arise no vigham--hurdle, in vidyAraMbham--start of education, vivAham--marriage, pravesham--entering, nirgamam--exiting, saMgrAmam--debates/opposition/fight/war and such other things, in fact in sakalakArya--all actions.

What are those sixteen names? To which SvAmi--God, do they pertain? Are they names of the same SvAmi? Or names of many SvAmis?

(They are names) Only those of the same SvAmi. It can be guessed (easily) as to who that SvAmi is, from the statement 'there will be no vighnam'. Only Vighneshvara!

For him there are several names. sahasra nAma--a thousand names, aShTottarashata nAma--108 names, all these names for him. He also has 21 names to do archanA--worship, with 21 kinds of patra--leaves; in the same way 21 names to do archanA with 21 kinds of puShpa--flowers; 21 names to do archanA with 21 pairs of dUrvA grass.

Here for us, for vighna-nivRtti--removal of hurdles, in sarva-kArya--all actions, only sixteen names are mentioned.

Greatness of the number sixteen
pages 008-011

Sixteen is an utkRShTa--excellent/eminent, number.

• What is mentioned as ShoDasha kalA pUrNam involves the sixteen kalAs--phases, of the moon from the amAvAsya--new moon day, up to the paurNamI--full moon day. Only when it reaches the sixteenth kalA, does the chandra--moon, becomes pUrNa chandra--full moon.

• The pUjA we perform somewhat elaborately is one that comprises sixteen kinds of upachAras--acts of homage, called ShoDashopachAra.

• Like referring to the seven devIs--divine mothers, as sapta mAtrukA, there is also ShoDasha mAtrukA--sixteen devIs.*1 and 2

• Of the mantras of ambAL RAjarAjeshvarI, the uchcha--apex/peak, is only the ShoDashAkSharI*3. Thereby, ambAL herself has a name ShoDazhI. ShoDasha akShara for ammA--mother. For piLLaiyAr--son GaNesha, SoDasha nAmas.

• To do AshIrvAdam--benediction, with these words is the custom in Tamzhi desham--regiion:

பதினாறும் பெற்றுப் பெருவாழ்வு வாழணும்

padinARum peRRup peruvAzhvu vAzhaNum
"Getting the sixteen, you people should lead a great life."

As to what AshIrvAdam is mentioned in the Veda, for a sumanggalI--woman living with husband, in a beautiful way with a deep inner meaning *4, it is this:

"Hey bhagavAn! Let this woman beget ten children and then treat her husband as her eleventh child."

In the Tamizh custom it is 'getting sixteen'. This is family planning yugam! Talking about it (this many number of children) makes one fear if they would 'push us inside' (the cell)!

• But then they say that 'getting the sixteen' does not denote begetting children but only those sixteen viShayas--fortunes, so the life would be prosperous.

There is one phrase (in Tamizh) 'பெரும் பேறு பெறுவது--perum pERu peRuvadu--getting a great fortune'.

That which is got is 'pERu'; which is why the prasava-kAlam--pregnancy time, is called 'பேற்றுக்காலம்--pERRukkAlam'.

• When we say 'perum pERu' we say it in the meaning of 'one which is bhAgya-vasha--of great fortune', 'one which is adRShTa-vasha--unseen fortune'. Getting something by Ishvara-anugraham--divine favour, without our making any efforts, is what is called 'pERu' here. They (the westerners) also say it in this same meaning, as 'gifted'.

• So, 'padinARum peTRu' is being gifted with the sixteen fortunes in this way. Apart from those gifted by Ishvara's grace with their own distinguished features, these (sixteen) also include those we get by making efforts and exerting.

• Thinking over it, one would understand that those things we get at birth without any efforts on our part, are only those He gave us depending on what we were and did, in the pUrva-janma--earlier birth. Perhaps he might have added to what we were to get by our karma.

• We refer to one who has such a pERu--fortune, as a man of adRShTam--luck. What the shAstra--scripture, says as 'adRSTha-phala--unseen fruit' is only the pUrva-sukRta--good karma of earlier birth, which one gets as 'a-dRShTa'--un-seen, by our intellect. (The direct meaning of a-dRSTha is that which can't be seen).

• When we start any worship, we should first do saMkalpam--determination/resolution, 'I do this pUjA for this purpose'.

The saMkalpam for GaNesha pUjA is usually chanted with these lines:

सह-कुटुम्बानां क्षेम-स्थैर्य-वीर्य-विजय-आयुर्-आरोग्य-ऐष्वर्याणां अभिवृद्ध्यर्थं ।
धर्मार्थ-काम-मोक्ष चतुर्विध-फल-पुरुशार्थ-सिद्ध्यर्थं ।
इष्ट-काम्यार्थ-सिद्ध्यर्थं ।
समस्त मङ्गला व्याप्त्यर्थं समस्त दुरितोपशान्त्यर्थं ।
पुत्र पौत्रादि अभिवृद्ध्यर्थं ।
सर्वाभीष्ट सिद्ध्यर्थं महागणपति प्रसादेन ।
ज्ञान वैराग्य सिद्ध्यर्थं ।
सिद्धिविनायक पूजां करिष्ये ॥

saha-kuTumbAnAM kShema-sthairya-vIrya-vijaya-Ayur-Arogya-aiShvaryANAM abhivRuddhyarthaM |
dharmArtha-kAma-mokSha chaturvidha-phala-purushArtha-siddhyarthaM |
iShTa-kAmyArtha-siddhyarthaM |
samasta ma~ggalA vyAptyarthaM samasta duritopashAntyarthaM |
putra pautrAdi abhivRuddhyarthaM |
sarvAbhIShTa siddhyarthaM mahAgaNapati prasAdena |
j~jAna vairAgya siddhyarthaM |
siddhivinAyaka pUjAM kariShye ||

These are the sixteen fortunes sought after with divine blessings, in this saMkalpam:

saha-kuTumbAnAM--for the entire family;
kShema-sthairya--welfare and stability,
vIrya-vijaya--strength and success,
Ayur-Arogya-aiShvaryANAM--longevity, health and wealth;
siddhyarthaM--may these be fulfilled; (7 fortunes so far)

dharmArtha-kAma-mokSha--dharma, artha, kAma, mokSha
chaturvidha-phala-purushArtha--four puruShArthas--aims of life,
siddhyarthaM--may these be fulfilled; (11 fortunes now)

iShTa-kAmyArtha--manoratha--mind's wishes,
siddhyarthaM--be fulfilled; (12 fortunes now)

samasta ma~ggalA vyAptyarthaM--may all auspiciousness be obtained;
samasta durita-upashAntyarthaM--may all sinful acts be appeased; (14 fortunes now)

putra pautrAdi abhivRuddhyarthaM--sons and grandsons in good number,
as the 15th fortune; and as

mahAgaNapati prasAdena--with MahAgaNapati happy over my puja and devotion, by his prIti--favourable disposition, and as his prAsada--divine favour,
sarvAbhIShTa siddhyarthaM--all these wishes be fulfilled. (16th fortune).

• Those who think there is too much laukilam--worldliness, in these wishes, would add these two to them:
j~jAna vairAgya siddhyarthaM--may knowledge and dispassion be accomplished.

• I don't very well remember if all these sixteen occur in the Tamizh usage 'padinARum peTRu'. Only thing I remember is that like the 'vIrya-vijaya' here, there it would come as 'vIRu-visayam'. *5

The pERugaL--fortunes, are sixteen. For PiLLaiyAr--GaNesha, the names are sixteen!

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01. The sapta mAtrukA are: brAhmaNI, vaiShNavI, shivadUtI or indrANI, narasiMhI, chAmuNDA, kaumArI, and varAhI. They represent the inner will power of their consorts. There is a temple for the sapta mAtrukAs in JaipUr, RAjasthAn. (Saptamatruka Temple - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

02. The ShoDasha mAtrukA are remembered by the following shloka:
Ref: The Student's Sanskrit-English Dictionary by Vaman Shivram Apte

गौरी पद्मा शची मेधा सावित्री विजया जया ।
देवसेना स्वधा स्वाहा मातरो लोकमातरः ।
शान्तिः पुष्टि ध्रुति तुष्टिः कुलदेवत आत्मदेवताः ॥

gaurI padmA shachI medhA sAvitrI vijayA jayA |
devasenA svadhA svAhA mAtaro lokamAtaraH |
shAntiH puShTi dhruti tuShTiH kuladevata AtmadevatAH ||

03. The ShoDashAkSharI mantra comprises these akSharas--syllables:

कएलह्रीं हसकहलह्रीं सकलह्रीं श्रीं

kaelahrIM hasakahalahrIM sakalahrIM shrIM

Listen to this mantra at: Sri Chakra - Sri Yantra navaavarana pooja of Devi Lalita Tripura Sundari)
If the last akSharam shrIM is dropped, it becomes a panchAdashi mantra).

04. Rg veda10.85.45:

इमां त्वमिन्द्र मीढ्वः सुपुत्रां सुभगां कृणु ।
दशास्यां पुत्राना धेहि पतिमेकादशं कृधि ॥ १०.०८५.४५ ॥

imAM tvamindra mIDhvaH suputrAM subhagAM kRuNu |
dashAsyAM putrAnA dhehi patimekAdashaM kRudhi || 10.085.45 ||

05. In Tamizh usage, here is an isolated verse about the sixteen:

தமிழ் வழக்கிலுள்ள பதினாறு பேறுகளப் பற்றிய தனிப்பாடல்:

துதி வாணி, வீறு, விசயம், சந்தானம், துணிவு, தனம்,
மதி, தானியம், சௌபாக்யம், போகம், அறி(வு), அழகு,
புதிதாடு பெருமை, அறம், குலம், நோயகல் பூண்வயது
பதினாறு பேறும் தருவாய் மதுரைப் பராபரனே.

tamizh vazhakkiluLLa padinARu pERugaLap paRRiya thanippADal:

tuthi vANi, vIRu, visayam, sa~ntAnam, thuNivu, danam,
mati, dAniyam, saubhAgyam, bhOgam, aRi(vu), azhagu,
pudidADu perumai, aRam, kulam, ~nOyagal pUNvayadu
padinARu pERum tharuvAy maduraip parAparanE.

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