[Advaita-l] Digest of Paramacharya's Discourses on Soundaryalahari (DPDS-47)

V. Krishnamurthy profvk at yahoo.com
Mon Dec 8 00:03:54 CST 2003

Recall the Note about the organization of the ‘Digest’, 
from DPDS – 26 or the earlier ones.
V. Krishnamurthy
A Digest of Paramacharya’s Discourses on Soundaryalahari - 
(Digest of pp.1028 -1032   of Deivathin Kural, 6th volume,
4th imprn.)

japo jalpaH shilpaM sakalam-api mudrA-virachanA
gatiH prAdakshhiNya-kramaNam ashanAdy-Ahuti vidhiH /
praNAmaH samveshaH sukhaM akhilaM AtmArpaNa-dRshA 
saparyA paryAyaH tava bhavatu yan-me vilasitaM // 27 //

(The word-by-word meaning comes out in the Paramacharya’s
explanation itself; so it is not given separately)

Whatever actions we do everything must be in dedication to
ambaa – this is the sum and substance of this shloka.
Worship, japam, showing mudrAs by the fingers of the hand,
circumambulation, prostration, offering in the fire with
the chanting of mantras in propitiation of ambaa – all
these are usually done in honour of ambaa by Her devotees. 
Yes, all these have to be done. But the matter should not
end there. Doing all this for a portion of the time, and
then for the rest of the time getting fully immersed in
material matters of the world, is exactly what should be
avoided. It is not like ‘A few hours for ambaa; and the
rest of the time for me and my worldly activities’. All the
time everything should become a worship, everything should
be a japam, a homam and an offering. That is how we should
change our life style. Not only the devotees, but all
should be able to do this. 

But how is this possible? Is this feasible? Don’t I have to
bathe? Don’t I have to eat, sleep, mix with people, do my
work in the world?  I hear you are all raising these
questions immediately. You may say that even the great
so-called jnAnis (enlightened ones) are certainly doing all
these routine activities of worldly life. So what is wrong?

Let it be. She as the Divine Mother has to perform Her
leelA. That is alright. But how is it that  the jnAnis, 
who know it is all Her leelA, are still working in the
mundane world? You should also be like those jnAnis. Be in
the world, not of the world. Maybe it is not  possible just
immediately. But gradually, you can train yourself to be
so. Effort and constant practice are needed. For the
present, start convincing yourself that your bathing,
eating, talking, sleeping, walking, and all these ordinary
activities are all happening because of Her Shakti –
without which by yourself you cannot do a single thing.
Constantly tell yourself  that this is so. Slowly keep
widening this belief for evcery action of yours. 

When you recognize that you are eating because of the power
She has given you to eat, you would not have the heart to
send rubbish stuff into your stomach. When the belief
settles in that it is ambaa that makes you walk, you will
hesitate twice before wasting it on going to the races or
the movies. When you know that it is by Her Grace you are
talking, you would not waste it on gossiping or scolding
another or discussing disgusting material. When we are
aware of the fact that hands and feet are working because
of Her, we would stop using them for doing wrong things. 

Gradually, in due time, this conviction has to spread to
your mental activities also. In other words, the egoistic
thought of ‘I am planning this or that’ will give way to
the thought ‘Let Her get this done, if She wishes’. This
change in the thought processes is important because it is
through the mind all the mAyic changes and troubles of the
world emerge. And they prevent the nullifying of the mind
and the entry into jnAna mArga. Once we transfer the
responsibilities to the Divine Mother, the impact of the
mind will slowly disappear. Thereafter, whether She keeps
us talking, walking or eating or She keeps us without any
of these, in any case, we would be peaceful at the bottom
of our heart.  It is to reach that state, to pray for that
state to be possible, that this shloka has been given to us
by the Acharya.

“japo jalpaH”:  ‘jalpa’ means  talk, whether it is
meaningful or not. So all this talk should be a japam. In
other words, it is the state of whatever we talk  becoming
an offering of japam for Her.
There are several mantras like ‘BalA’, ‘ShhoDashI’,  and
‘panchadashI’. All these mantras are done in a japa form.
We are not saying that they should not be done.  But
ultimately, the japa as a separate activity has to
disappear and the conviction should occur that whatever we
talk is a japa offering to Her.
“sakalaM shilpam-api mudrA-virachanA”:  Whatever I do by my
hand, let it be a mudrA that one does in Your pUjA. Here
‘shilpam’ must be taken to mean any kind of work.
Unfortunately the tamil word ‘shilpam’ means only
sculpture. Maybe because Man produces forms just as the
Creator creates human beings.
“gatiH prAdakshhiNya-kramaNaM” :  Whatever movement I do
let it be a circumambulation of You. Wherever I go let me
have the feeling that I am doing a pradakshhiNA of You.
“ashanAdi” : food, etc. Since the ‘etc.’ is there it means
not only food that is eaten, but food that is consumed by
the other senses like eyes and ears. So all sensual
experiences are covered. 
“Ahuti vidhiH” : Let them be the offerings given to the
sacred fire lit for You.
In fact all eating is done only after giving the first five
morsels to the five prANas. In the Gita also, the Lord says
that He it is who digests the food by being VaishvAnara as
‘JATharAgni’ in the stomach. Once we have the conviction
that it is He that is sitting inside and consuming what we
send through the mouth, then we would not be sending in
wine and meat for His consumption.  The same logic applies
to the sensual consumption by eyes, ears, skin, and nose. 
Everything is experienced by Him and so let us dare not
send in undesirable things.

“praNAmas-samveshaH” : Let my very sleeping be a namaskara
done to You. Once we realise that our lying down for rest
is nothing but a namaskaram at the feet of ambaa, that
would itself give us total peace and relaxation.

Why carry on this list in detail. It is not necessary to do
special japa, homa, namakara and such rituals. Whatever we
naturally do , let it be our pUja to You – this is the
meaning of “sukham akhilam AtmArpaNa-dRshA saparyA paryAyaH
tava bhavatu yan me vilasitaM”.  Here “saparyA” means pUjA.
“paryAya” has many meanings, one of which is ‘substitute’.
So this gives the meaning: Let whatever I do be a
‘substitute’ for the pUjA to be done to You.  

To be Continued

Thus spake the Paramacharya

praNAms to all advaitins and Devotees of Mother Goddess

Prof. V. Krishnamurthy
My website on Science and Spirituality is http://www.geocities.com/profvk/
You can  access my book on Gems from the Ocean of Hindu Thought Vision and Practice,  and my father R. Visvanatha Sastri's manuscripts from the site.
Also see the webpages on Paramacharya's Soundaryalahari :

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