[Advaita-l] Digest of Paramacharya's Discourses on Soundaryalahari(DPDS-51)

V. Krishnamurthy profvk at yahoo.com
Sat Jan 3 23:52:53 CST 2004

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.1050 -1055   of Deivathin Kural, 6th volume,
4th imprn.)

manas-tvaM vyoma tvaM marud-asi marut-sArathir-asi
tvam-Apas-tvaM bhUmis-tvayi pariNatAyAM na hi paraM /
tvameva svAtmAnaM pariNamayituM vishva-vapushhA 
cid-AnandA-kAraM shiva-yuvati-bhAvena bibhRshhe //35//

“manaH tvaM” – You are the mind. Mother, it is this mind
that is responsible for all the truant behaviour and all
the consequent troubles; but even that mind is You
yourself. ‘I may ask you, O Mother; Who are you?’ – even
this question is rising only in my mind and that again is

In the path of jnAna, they talk of the destruction of the
mind. But here we are told that the mind itself is ambaa.
The advantage in convincing oneself that the Mother Goddess
Herself is our mind, is that it paves the way for stopping
all further truant behaviour and thus inviting further
troubles.  It is by such practice one ends up with the void
where there is no mind; it is actually not void, but is
called jnAna-AkAsha, that is, Knowledge-space.  Maybe it is
not visible now. So what? Right now what you are able to
see is the blue vast sky; learn to see that it is also

“Vyoma tvaM” --  You are Space.  Not only just Space. You
are the five elements. The thing next to AkAsha is air; and
that is also You.  “marud-asi” – air are you.  “marut”
means ‘air’ (Vayu).  Hanuman is called ‘Maruti’ because He
is the son of ‘marut’. 

At the next level there is agni, fire. That is also your
another form. Even the Veda says: “agni-varnAM, tapasA
jvalantIM”, -- ‘of the colour of agni, shining by the fire
of penance’. Fire travels the way the wind blows, therefore
it is called ‘marut-sArathiH’. Fire has marut (Wind) as its

“tvaM ApaH. tvaM bhUmiH” – You are  Water. You are the

Ambaa is in the form of the five fundamental elements and
so manifests Herself in the five chakras in the body, from
mUlAdhAra to Vishuddhi.
Where is the need for elaboration one by one? There is
nothing where You are not manifest.  “ tvayi pariNatayAM na
hi paraM”. The ‘pariNatAyAM’ means that ambaa Herself has
become all this. ‘na hi paraM’ shows that there is nothing
more supreme (paraM) than Her.

All that was said so far constitute the first two lines of
the shloka.  In the latter two lines, it says: “In order to
make yourself  pervade the whole universe, You Yourself as
the consort of Lord Shiva  manifest in the form of

The fullness is Existence-Knowledge-Bliss
(sat-cid-AnandaM). Shiva is not only just ‘sat’
(Existence), but also Knowledge and Bliss. As Knowledge it
‘knows’. As Bliss it is ‘blissfully happy’. This knowing
and being happy are the effects of ambaa. That is why She
is called ‘cid-Ananda-lahari’ (Shloka 8). What is the
reason for this expression of knowledge and Bliss? The
third line of the shloka answers this.

“tvaM eva svAtmAnaM pariNamayituM vishva-vapushhA” –
meaning, ‘For the purpose of your pervasion as the entire
universe, You took the Knowledge-Bliss Expression in the
role of the consort of Shiva’. 

‘The brahman knowing itself and revelling in the Bliss of
that Knowledge does not just end there; the expansion as
Knowledge and Bliss is for the purpose of manifesting
itself as the Universe’ – This is the kind of thought in
this shloka. It is out and out a ShAkta doctrine. It is not
there in advaita. When advaita school dwells on Creation,
they say: “It is all because of mAyA; the questions of How
and Why do not lead us anywhere. The whole business is to
discard this mAyA and rest in the base, the substratum . So
where is the need for research about How  this came and for
what purpose?’ 

On the other hand, in the traditions of Bhakti, like
ShAktam, they give you reasons for Creation – that the same
Cit (that is, Supreme Consciousness) manifests as several
fragments of consciousness and the same Ananda (that is,
Supreme Bliss) manifests as several fragments of Bliss, and
that Creation is enable us to watch the play of that
Universe.  According to them it is that drama that we take
to be wholly real and we consequently are immersed in that
mAyA. ‘Even in this mAyic universe what flows is only that
Consciousness-Bliss (cidAnanda-rasam); in the same way as
the substratum of existence being called ‘shiva-yuvati’. 
If only we realise that all this creation of universe is to
make us enjoy Her play, Her drama, Her expansion, then we
can delight in that blissful view of the miracle, and in
turn, be immersed in that CidAnanda.

Note that the word ‘pariNAma’  (transformation) has been
used twice.   There is no ‘transformation’ concept in
advaita. In advaita, Brahman does not get transformed, as
milk does into curd. The changeless brahman appears as the
universe through mAyA – that is the advaitic contention. It
is Sankhya that talks of the universe as the transformation
of PrakRti. Even there they don’t say that it is the
transformation of the Purusha, but it is so only of
PrakRti. Our Acharya has adopted that tenet here and used
the form of that tenet as given by the ShAkta tantra. 

It will be interesting to research into  how much the
Acharya condescends to stray away from advaita in order to
accommodate the various tastes of people  with the purpose
of lifting them up. One may question: ‘Could he do such
things, ever?’. The only answer could be: ‘Only a
compassionate one such as the Acharya can’!

There is a branch of Kaula called Uttara-kaula. They
interpret ‘shiva-yuvati’  as follows. ‘Shiva-yuvati’ does
not mean ‘the consort of Shiva’. It is Shivam itself that 
encompasses the Shiva-tattva within itself and manifests as
the ‘yuvati’, the feminine consort. The SahasranAmam also
has ‘svAdhIna-vallabhA’ which means ‘She who has her
husband in her control’. A little stretching of that
meaning will indicate that She has Him within Herself. And
this will help us to be confirmed of  the Acharya’s words
‘na hi paraM’ (there is nothing other than Herself) in this

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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