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Full text of "Daya Satakam Of Vedanta Desika"

DATA SATAKAM 

of 
'EDANYA DESIKA 




English Commentary 

by 
D. RAMASWAMY AYYANGAfr 

ADVOCATE, KADRAS, 



Published by 

TtRUMALA-tlRUPATI DEVASTHANAKS. TIRUPATI. 

1961 



Price Rs. 3/- 



OAYA SATAEAM 

OF 

VEDANTA DESIKA 

1> , 5 ?' ' j , 

(A hymn in praise cf the Mercy of Lord S|i Venkatcswara) 

WITH ; 

COMMENTARY IN ENGIJ[SH 

BY ; 

D. RAMASWAMY 

Advocate, \fadras. 



FOREWORD 



BY 



The Honourable Sri P. V. RAJAMANNAR, 
(Chief Justice, High Court, Madras) 



' 



INTRODUCTION BY " \ 

Sri C. ANNA RAO, Executive Officer, 

T. T. DEVASTHANAMS, TIRUPVH. 




. 

'* 



Published by 

TIRUMALA-TIRUPATI DEVASTHANAMS PRESS, 
TIRUPATI. 



1961 



[Rs. 3/- 



Qt THfc 

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TIRUIATI f " 







INTRODUCTION 



Sri Vedanta Desika, the great scholar 
devotee, sang 108 slokas on the * Daya * or ' Gi 
aspect of Sri Srinivasa for the benefit of poste 
A reading of the Sathakam will invoke the $ 
of the Lord on the reader. The Devasthanam 
published commentaries on the slokas in Ts 
Telugu and Kannada languages through the coin 
of the Bulletin. Sri D. Ramaswami lyyengar, 
helped the Devasthanam to publish the commen 
in the English language as well, to serve a Is 
circle of devotees. His exposition and treati 
of the subject matter is thought-provoking 
brilliant. The flow of thought in the commenta 
coming as it does from the heart of a great dev 
is exhilarating. We are grateful to the comment 
for this service of his to the bhakthas. 



T. T.DEVASTHANAMS} Q ANNA RA< 

TIRUPATI > 

181160. 



17 
\ Executive 

J 



FOREWORD, 



I have always lamented the fact of the comparat 
ignorance of one of the greatest systems of religi< 
philosophy in the world, which has been develoj 
in South India by great saints, devotees, scholars < 
philosophers, namely, the Visishtadvaita. That sysl 
embodies some of the most beautiful concepts of 
relations between man and God. One such cone 
is Prapathi, the doctrine of complete surrender to 
Supreme Being. The basis for that doctrine is 
conviction of the limitless mercy, kindness, and gi 
of the Lord, and the declaration in the Charama SI 
of the Gita. It is this quality which is glorified 
the name of dayaa, personified as Dayaadevi, 
extolled by one of the greatest exponents of Visish 
vaita, Sri Vedanta Desika, in his Daya Satakam. 

The Satakam, as the name denotes, is a collec 
of hundred slokas. Sometimes the number goes 
to 108 for auspicious reasons. The hundred sk 
which comprise the stotra proper are made up of 
decads. Sri Ramaswamy Ayyangar has brillia 
demonstrated how each of the ten decads is i 
different metre and deals with a distinct the 
and what is extremely significant is that the ten tc 
dealt with in the stotra are the ten topics of the fan 
Dramidopanishad (Tiruvoimozhi) of Nammalwar. 

We have in Vedanta Desika a most remark 
combination of a supreme bhaktha, a profound scl 
and a poet of the first rank. Daya Satakam re 
this versatality of his. 



Sri Ramaswamy Ayyangar has fully brought 
and described the fundamental truths, the pow 
ideas and the lyrical beauties of the satakam. 

Striking a. personal note, what has appealed t< 
most in this stotra of haunting loveliness is the 
in which, Sri Desika develops the idea of dayaa, 
pribed as Dayaadevi, as an entity peculiarly dis 
from the Lord Himself, though ultimately daya 
an attribute of the Lord Himself She is capabl 
even reversing the decisions of the Lord to pui 
She controls the actions of the Lord, so to say. , 
swaroopa and the roopa of dayaa are sung in' the 
cfecad of the poem. To my mind, Dayaadevi is 
other than Lakshmidevi herself, because slie is 
embodiment of Lord Srinivasa's mercy; 

cc Sri&ivaasasya Karunaamiva roopiheem " , 

The concept of dayaa which, as I have alre 
mentioned, is the "basis of the doctrine of prapc 
has a vital place in the Visishiadvaita philaspi 
which I may Cjall as the " Religion of Dayaa." / 
Supreme Bqi&g is also Dayaanidhi, Dayaa is 
whcha, the; desire, of tlie Lord. , D^yw* eijsi 
d01iverante to every b^eiftg. 

Sri Ramaswamy Ayyangar cannot be adeqlial 1 

cfefeitiended for the admirable way in which he 
ex^oufliod the slokas of Sri Vedanta Desilcal 
cmitd ndt have suoc^ded in his task as he has, 
for tlie fact lhat he himself is a scholar, a philosopt 
a bhaktha. s. . ,- 



VTCTORIA CRESCE^TO P ; 

**"" M4D'AS-. ; '^ - 



PREFACE 



Even like the holy waters of the sacred Ganga 
pouring on the head of a lame man living far 
away, the Grace of Lord Srinivasa has descended 
on me, a very unworthy person,, and enabled even me 
to write out a commentary on one of the finest 
pieces of devotional lyric given to the world by 
Vedanta Desika,>--the Dayaa Satakairu Thanks to 
the help and co-operation unstintingly extended to 
me by the energetic and devoted Executive Officer, 
Sri C. Anna Rao, a ">d the Staff of the Tirumala- 
Tirupati Devasthanams Press, the commentary was 
published in instalments in 24 consecutive issues of the 
Tirumala-Tirupati Devasthanams Bulletin. And now 
it is being issued as a separate book. It is very good 
of Sri C. Anna Rao to have commended the book to 
the worshipping public by writing out an introduction, 
and I thank him heartily for it. 

The book has been very lucky in securing the 
approval and approbation of Sri P. V. Rajamannar, 
Chief Justice of the Madras High Court, and a 
reputed connoisseur of all the noble fine arts. I am 
very grateful to him for enriching the book by his 
nice foreword. 



MADRAS-? 1 D. RAMASWAMY 

4 H 1960 j Advocate. 



Sri Ramaswamy Ayyangar has fully brought 
and described the fundamental truths, the powe 
ideas and the lyrical beauties of the satakam. 

Striking a personal note, what has appealed to 
most in this stotra of haunting loveliness is the % 
In which Sri Desika develops the idea of dayaa, c 
cribed as Dayaadevi, as an entity peculiarly disti 
from the Lord Himself, though ultimately dayaa 
an attribute of the Lord Himself She is capable 
even reversing the decisions of the Lord to puni: 
She controls the actions of the Lord, so to say. T 
swaroopa and the roopa of dayaa are sung in* the 8 
cfecad of the poem. To my mind, Dayaadevi Is i 
other than Lakshmidevi herself, because she is tj 
embodiment of Lord Srinivasa's mercy; 

" Sriaivaasasya Karunaamiva roopiheem " . , 

The concept of dayaa which, as I have alread 

mentioned, is the 'basis of the doctrine of prapath 

has a vital place in the Visishtadvaita 

which I may call as the " Religion of Dayaa/.' 

Supreme Being is also Dayaanidhi, Dayaa -is 

the, desire, of the Lord., . I)aym 

to every being. ..,. 

Sri Ramaswamy Ayyangar cannot be 

for the admirable way in which he lias 

the slokas of Sri Vedanta Desika: ? He 

not have succeeded in his task' as he has, but 

for tte fact that he himself is a scholar, a philosopher 
9Dd a bhaktha. , , 

VrCTORIA CRESCENT,^ ' " p v 

* MADRAS.!. I P ' V " 

91 1 i960 \ Chief Justice 

iyW " ; 



Even like the holy waters of the sacred Ganga 

mring on the head of a lame man living far 

/ay, the Grace of Lord Srinivasa has descended 

me 5 a very unworthy person, and enabled even me 

write out a commentary on one of the finest 

sees of devotional lyric given to the world by 

danta Desika, the Dayaa Satakam. Thanks to 

> help and co-operation unstintingly extended to 

5 by the energetic and devoted Executive Officer, 

C. Anna Rao, a^d the Staff of the Tirumala- 
upati Devasthanams Press, the commentary was 
Wished in instalments in 24 consecutive issues of the 
umala-Tirupati Devasthanams Bulletin. And now 
s being issued as a separate book. It is very good 
Sri C. Anna Rao to have commended the book to 
worshipping public by writing out an introduction, 
. I thank him heartily for it. 

The book has been very lucky in securing the 
roval and approbation of Sri P. V. Rajamannar, 
ef Justice of the Madras High Court, and a 
ited connoisseur of all the noble fine arts. I am 
r grateful to him for enriching the book by his 

foreword. 



DRAS-7 1 D. RAMASWAMY 




Sri Venkateswara Swamiwa Tirwaal 



Srimaan Venkata Natharyaha Kavi-tarkika-kesari i 
Vedaantacharyavaryo me Sannidattaam Sada hrdi H 

May Sri Venkatanaatha of auspicious attributes, who is a 
mong poets and logicians, and who is esteemed and revered 1 
s Vedaantacharya May he ever reside and shine resplende 
iy heart! 



Raamanuja Dayaa Paatram Gnaana Vairaagya Bhooshanai 
Srimad Venkatanaatharyam Vande Vedaanta Desikam 

Prostrations to Sri Venkatanaatha the Great, who is a i 
eceptacle for the grace of Ramanuja, who shines adorned by 
2dge and Renunciation, (or is an ornament to knowledge and rent 
ion) and who is known by the honorific title of Vedanta Desika 

(l)iBefore studying the great works of our ancient Acharyas, we 
rst offer our obeisance to the respective author of each work, and tl 
'btain his grace, without which the meaning and significance of the wor 
.s several parts cannot be properly grasped or understood. Each A< 
ias got laudatory and invocatory verses sung in his honour and praise 
test disciple or by one of his followers, and they are known in Tamil as T 
>robably because they stand separately from the work proper of the a 
This aloka is invariably recited by all before studying any Sanskrit we 
/edanta Desika. 

(2) This sloka is also a Tanian in praise of Sri Desika. Thii 
'ariably recited at the beginning of the study and chanting of the sacred 
F erses of the Alwars, known as the 4000 Divya Prabhandams, by D 



DAYAA SATAKAM 



great sanctity to the Hill. Hence the poet starts the stotra with 
praise of the Hill, that Hill (Tam-Girim) which is well known ar 
famous. The utpreksha (poetical fancy) is that the Hill is real 
a form of tfeJLorcfs Daya, even as sugar is a form of sugarcai 
juice. * Sarka|a ' means sugar. It also means stones or pebble 



3 



I! 00 

Vigahe teertha hahulam Seetalam guru santatim \ 
Sreenivasa dmyuambedheh Pareemaha Parampamam " ( 

I bathe in the cool and refreshing streams, full of water, whi< 
flow in uninterrupted continuity ftom that great reservoir which 
the storage of Sreenivasai's Mercy, the streams constituted by tl 
heirarchy of acharyas, In whe shape the Lord's grace flows fro 
that reservoic 

The author pays his respects to the earlier Acharyas, Eve] 
good act must be done guru-vandana-poorvakam, preceded t 
paying homage to the guru or Acharya. "Teertha" signifi 
waterand sflso an Acharya ofrepute (vide teerthapaada, teerthankar 
It is a guru santaM or heirarchy. It is * seetalaam'- cool,- 
calculated to destroy our tapa or heat. The acharyas are hei 
enjoyed as the overflow channels- carrying the surplus water whic 
is the Daya of the Lord. It is much easier and safer to bathe i 
the waters of running streams than to bathe in a deep and larj 
lake or reservoir. The suggestion in this sloka is that acharyj 
are gracious personages bringing the Lord's Mercy unto us, 



Kxitmah Kamalaaxasa Karunym-kantinobhaje \ 

Datte y&t .Saoktiiooj ma Trimdi Sarva Jagyatam " (; 

I worship those great and blessed persons who solely rely c 
the Mercy of Lord Sreenivasa to the exclusion of everything else- 
those great persons who rendered the ancient Vedas accessible i 
one and all by their own works (Prabhandanu) 

TheAlwarsare jefarced.to in this sloka. They were the first 1 
postulate the potency of Divine Mercy to which alone theylooke 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

up, rejecting all other forms atid aids prescribed for God-realisal 
Their great service to humanity lies in their rendering the mean 
of the Vedas into the Tamil language and thereby making "V 
knowledge the most relevant portion of it available to one 
all, irrespective of the caste, creed or "sex differences which go 
and regulate the study of those Vedas. The exclusiveness of "V 
truths was done away with by their Tamil works capable oft 
studied by every one male or female, Brahmin or Non-Brah 
Kamalaavasa signifies Sreenivasa and also a lotus tank. The Al 
have sung of the Lord as a Lotus Tank {ftinze&sr &&r <ay 
flL-ti) : Qufrjf)(ffi-rey>3& &ILJU), So when Desika thinks of 
Alwars their reference to the Lord as a Lotus Tank com^s tc 
mind, (vid s e sloka 43 of Daya Satakas post). And that is in 
the Lord**s peculiar name in this place, Sree-nivasa. Kama! 
another name for Lakshmi. 



Paraasam mukhan vande Bhageerata naye stitaan 
Kamalaakanta Kaarunya Gangaaplavita mdd-vidaan n 

To the great Rishis like Parasara, I offer my salutations. 
because of their indefatigable attempts, even like Bhageerata's, p 
like me get drenched (wet) with the Mercy of the Consort of Ka 
(Lakshmi), 

The Maharishis of yore, the great and earliest Seers oi 
Holy land, are next thought of with gratitude. Paraasara o 
them has been specially mentioned as the most outstanding am 
them, as he is the author of Sri Vishnu Purana in which Ihe va 
divine deeds of the Lord replete with Mercy have been elabo: 
dealt with. Sage Valmiki finds special mention at the end o 
stotra, in the 103rd sloka. 

Bhageeratha is well known for his steadfast and unda 
tapas by the force and efficacy of which he brought 'the s 
Gangaa to this earth. So too by unswerving invocations 
Dhyaana or contemplation the Rishis have succeeded in m 
the Lord's compassion available even to us who are as 
spiritually as the forefathers, sixty thousand in number, of B 
rata. In the plenitude of our gratitude therefore we ha 
remember those great Rishis. 



6 DAYAA SATAKAM 

entire world is more often than not seized with a feeJing of angi 
at the tran secessions which we mortals in our ignorance are vei 
often guilty of. This anger is a serious obstacle to the flow of mere 
It is the function of Bhoodevi to remove this obstacle by Ksham 
(forgiveness), which makes the Lord put up with all our sins an 
thereby helps us to obtain His mercy. It is this quality of Ksham* 
wMqh Bhoodevi stands for and symbolises, and inculcates in th 
Lord. So She is pictured here as the remover of the obstacles i 
the way of the flow of Daya. It was the function of Vishwaksen 
to remove the obstacles in the way of our seeking God and approach 
ing Him in all humility for help. When we go there we are assure* 
by Lakshmi of His grace or Krpa which She stands for. Th 
possibility of any barrier in the way of that grace reaching us i 
removed by Blloodevi. Viswa-dhaarini means the supporter o 
all (everything). It also indicates one who patiently suffers aiac 
puts up with everything Sarvam-Suha. That is Bhoodevi. 



Nimamayaffhu maam Neela Yat bhogapatalayr-dhruvam \ 
Bhavitam Sremivaasasya Bhakta dosheshu-adarsanam, (&) 

May Neela Devi turn her glances on me* It is only by virtue 
of the screen she draws, m it were, in front of Lord Sreenivasa by 
her amorous endearments, that that Lord pretends not to see the 
errors (faults and sins) of His devotees- 

The Vaishnavites associate three chief Devis as the Consorts 
of the Lord. Lakshmi and Bhoodevi among them are well known. 
Neela Devi, however, is not so well known, except to very close 
students of Sri Vaishnava Sampradaya. When the Lord came 
down" to this earth as Lord Sri Krishna, Lakshmi took the form 
of Rukmini, Neela took the form of Satyabhama. In Tamil, 
Neela is known as Nappinnai (Vide 18th Verse of Tiruppavai). 
She is the same as Satyabhama of the Srimad Bhagavatha. The 
part Neela plays in coming to the help of the seekers after the 
Lord's grace is very nicely put in this sloka by the author of this 
Stotra. The Lord's fondness towards her makes Him blind to 
the-sios of His votaries. The analogy used is from Vaidya Sastra. 
Fatalaa is what is now known as cataract in the eye. Those who 
are given to sexual excesses^ it is believed in Ayurveda, get cataract. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 



Asesha Vignasamanam Aneekeswaram aasraye i 

Srfmatah Karunaambodhau Siksha srota ivoththitam (f 

I seek shelter under the Commander-in-chief of the armie 
(of the Lord) who is also the destroyer of all obstacles. He is lik< 
a stream of instruction spurting out from the vast reservoir that i: 
the Mercy of Sreeman (Lord of Lakshmi). 

'In the spiritual heirarchy of the Vaishnavites. Vishvaksenas 
who is the Commander-in-Chief in Vaikunta of the forces of the 
Lord is a Nitya or eternal, even like Garuda and Ananta. But 
unlike them he has a place in the Guruparampara or line of ach'aryas 
next only to that of Lakshmi who in turn is next to that Primordial 
Teacher, Sriman Narayana. So in this sloka Desika pays his respects 
to him and in doing so refers very nicely to the threefold 
greatness that is Vishvaksenaa's. First he is the queller of all obs- 
tacles in the path of an aspirant. Next he is the chief of the Divine 
army. And lastly he is the originator as it were of instruction or 
teaching. The imparting of knowledge to another is called siksha. 
That term has acquired a secondary meaning of * punishment * 
which is intimately associated with that term now. Even the 
secondary meaning is in Desika's mind. For not only is Vishva- 
ksena the foremost of teachers but he is also a pedagogue with a 
birch or cane in his hand. It is called * vetra ' and symbolises 
punishment or chastisement. 

The imparting of knowledge is an aspect of Daya or God's 
Mercy. That has been very beautifully indicated here by suggest- 
ing that the stream of siksha (teaching) takes its origin from the 
big lake of Daya. 

The Smarthas and Saivites look up to Vighneswara for re- 
moving obstacles in the path of the observance of righteous and 
religious ceremonies. Vighneswara will, taken strictly, mean the 
Lord of obstacles. It is only by inference thdt it must be 
taken that he is one who protects us from obstacles by removing 
them. Desika can be seen to refer here to Vishvaksena as being 
Vigna-samana. At the same time his Eeswaratvam is also there. 
He is Aneekeswara. 



Samasta Jananeem Vande Chaitanya stanya daayineem i 
Sreyaseem Sreenivasasya Kaninam Iva Roopineem (6) 

I bow before the Mother of all, who feeds every one with the 
: of knowledge, who is the bestower of greatness and who is the 
odiment, as it were, of Lord Sreenivasa's mercy, 

After paying obeisance to Sri Vishvaksena, the poet in this 
a pays Ms respects to Sri Mahalakshrai. She is referred to 
le Mother of all. Just as the ordinary mother feeds her babes 

her breast milk, Lakshmi the Divine Consort of the Lord 
s everyone with the milk of knowledge. Stanya means breast 
:. Here it is in the form of chaitanya or knowledge. The 
I Sreenivaasasya in the third pada has been very cleverly 
;d so as to be taken along with the previous word and also 

the succeeding words. She is Sreyaseem Sreenivasasya, 
ling thereby the cause for His superiority and excellence. She 
Iso Sreenivasasya karunamiva roopinee the embodiment of 
VIercy of Srinivasa. This idea of Lakshmi being the " roopi* 
9 or the alter ego of karuna or compassion is a topic very fre- 
tly dealt with in the course of this stotra. 



Vande Vrishigireesasya Mahisheem Vlsvadharineem 

Tat Krpa pratighaatanaam Kshamayaa Vaaranam Yayaa (7) 

[ prostrate before Mother Earth (Bhoomi .Devi) who is the 
Drt of the Lord of Vrishagiri (another name for VenkatachaJa) 
by Her trait of forgiveness removes all obstacles to the flow 
is grace* 

n this sloka the author pays his respects to the Consort of 
Srinivasa who occupies a seat on His left just as Maha- 
mi occupies a seat on His right. The Ubhayanachiars (Nan- 
/) on either side of Sri Malayappa Swami on the Hills are 
evi on His right and Bhoodevi on His left. Lakshmi symbo- 
Vlercy and it is in that aspect the poet paid his respects to Her 
> previous sloka. The Lord who is also the law-giver for the 



Dt&YAA 

To a man afflicted by cataract in the eye, vision gets affected and 
he is not able to see well. This is said to happen in the ease of the 
Lord here. The adarsanatvam (non-seeing) in regard to the faults 
of Bhaktas is attributed to the Patala or screen caused- by Neela's 
bhoga or endearing enjoyments That f the poet is here referring 
to, a great truth in very ordinary language will "be clear from the 
use of the word Bhaavitam. It is only a. pretence. It is nor a 
constitutional defect: :or affliction but it is a pot-on state-of-affairs. 
One is reminded of the name Avignata #%rar in the Sahasra- 
nama given to the Lord by that Grand, Old Sire, Bheeshmaa. 
Avignata literally means one who does not know. 

Thisds the only sloka of the 108 slokas of the Datya -.Sataka 
in rwtth there is no mention of Daya. In:allth& other 107' slokas. 
invariably Daya finds: a :place y -7-meiitioiied intsome places a& Daya, 
[another, places as Karwna, Krpa ioc Aaukampa. Thissisa very 
native iway* of suggesting that there is, -need OBI our part to invoke 
thfr Lord's grace only because .of ow sins bmmg taken note of by 
the Lord. 



Kamapyanavadhim Vande Karunaa Varunaalayam \ 
Vrishasaila-tatastaanaam Sway am Vyaktimupaagatam. (9) 

I adore that indescribable and limitless ocean of Mercy (Lord 
3reeniasa) which is self-revelatory to those wlro (taeke their) stand 
>n (the shore known as) VrishasaMa (i.e 



After paying his respects to the Hill, the Acharyas, the Alwars, 
;he Maharishis, to Vishwaksena, Mahalakshmi Bhoodevi and 
Meela Devi respectively, the poet now offers his Vandana or worship 
;o Lord .Srinivasa Himself, as. a prelude -to praising Daya from 
Jie.next sloka. This (ninth) sloka is the only sloka. in praise of 
;he .Lord Himself. His name occurs in every sloka of this, stotra 
3ut not in this which describes Him ,only as an .ocean of mercy. 
The two ^viseshanas (adjectives) used, here are Kamapi and .Annva- 
Ikim.* The first indicates His greatness. -that is beyond, wools., 
The second, refers to ffi& immeasurability. Auadhi, is boundary 
wr limit and is used both in; regard to space and, time-: 
ucare, therefore indicates, oae.w! is :,uialdmited by . space . 
2 



8 BAYAA SATAKAM 

In the second half of the sloka reference is made to this Lord 
Tirumala as a Swayam-vyakta (self-revealed). There are sev 
forms of archas or idols. The most important among them 
Swayam Vyakta where the Lord of His own will takes a forn 
unlike other cases where in response to prayers or requests fr 
Siddhas, Devas or men He graciously descends into an arc 
form, referred to as Saiddha, Daiva, and Maanusha, respective 
That Tirumala is a Swayam- Vyakta-stala is well known and seve: 
Purarias speak ^bout it. 

The word * Tatasta * means" one who takes his stand on 
and also " one who stands on the shore." The suggestion in t 
latter meaning is that the ocean is fathomable only by those wl 
do not attempt to get into it. The Upanishadic saying ' Vignaata 
Avijaanataarn ' is brought to our minds by this suggestion. He w. 
not reveal Himself to those who think they can by their effor 
fathom His greatness. But to those who stay on the shore in tt 
feeling that He is unfathomable, He shows himself. Of coun 
to those who go to Tirumala He is there revealing Himself to thei 
of His own accord (Swayam). 



Akinchana Nidhim Sootim Apavargatrivargayoho \ 
Anjanaadreeswara Dayaam Abishtowmi Nimnjanazm, (10^ 

I praise the Daya (or Grace) of Anjanaadreeswara (the Lord ol 
the Anjana Hill) who is the treasure (stored up wealth) for helpless 
and hapless persons, and who is the bestower of Moksha as well 
as Dhanna, Artfaa and Kama, and whs is free from all fault or 
blemish. 

From this sloka the praise of Daya Devi regularly starts. This 
is also indicated by the Kriyaa-pada (predicate) used here Abhi- 
stowmi. The poet's pratigna (ST^IT) or determination is to praise, 
adequately and well, Daya Devi, She is referred to as the Daya 
of Anjanaadreeswara. Anjanaadri is one of the several names of 
Vengadam. The Puranas have it that Anjana Devi (mother of 
Aanjaneya) performed penance on this Hill for getting a son and 
hence the Hill is known as Anjanaadri. . The Lord of the Hill is 
Anjanaadreeswara. His Daya is the subject of praise in this Stotra. 



Lnree aspects or uaya are pointedly reterrea to in mis sioKa. 
irst is that She is the sole help and succour for all those who 
lelpless. The beginning words are Akinchana Nidhim. Kin- 
i denotes something, a very small minute and insignificant 
thing. Akinchana means one not possessing even that trifling 
thing. That is to say one who is absolutely bereft of everything. 
? denotes a vast treasure or stored up wealth lying buried in 
arth or otherwise hidden from view. The first and fore- 
quality of Daya is that she is the refuge for the helpless. 

The second attribute referred to here is that Daya is the besto- 
)f Apavarga or Moksha, and not only that, but also the three 
purushaarthas Dharma, Artha and Kaama, compendiously 
ed to as Trivarga. Though in the normal order of enume- 
i of the four purmhaarthas, Moksha comes last, here among 
,'s gifts it is mentioned first. Daya wants to confer on us all 
sha or release from Samsara and residence in the Celestial 
le of Bliss. But our desire for moksha is not there and 
esire the other three purusharthas only. Even those three 
onfers on us though not so gladly and willingly. In the eighth 
I, especially in the 75th sloka, of this stotra, the poet will be 
ing to us how Daya utilises the several gifts in Her power 
its to confer on us everlasting bliss. 

The last trait referred to is Daya's blemishlessness. The word 
ana ' means collyrium (the black paste that is applied to the 
by females especially) and also fault or blemish. The rasokti 
is that while she is the Consort of Anjanaadreeswara she has 
-. bit of anjana herself. The great truth brought out by this 
ing sabda-virodha (apparent contradiction in words) is that 
if the Lord cannot be said to be faultless. Daya Devi is indeed 
;ly faultless. He is a law- giver and as such cannot be expected to 
ly put up with those who transgress thq law. To us erring mortals 
s a flaw in Him. It is only the attribute of Mercy in Him that 
Him and saves us. This aspect is elaborated in the later sloka$. 



BAYAA SATAKAM 



"SECOND DECAD. 



Introduction. 

FROM the llth slbka to the 20th, the metre employed is wha 
Is ! known as Geetl. This, like the well known Aarya, is i 
metre regulated not by syllables or aksharaas, but by maatraa 
or syllabic instants. *A change of the metre for every ten sloka 
studiedly employed by a poet is an indication to the readers tha 
8 there is a change of topic with every change of metre. For th< 
ten decads of this Stotra proper, the ten topics of Dramidopamshat 
(Nammalwar's Tiruvoimozhi) as summarised by Desika himsel: 
in his Dramidopanishad* Saaram and " Dramidopanishad Taatparyc 
Ratnaavali have been adopted as the topics. Accordingly " Sevac 
Yogyatwam "* was- the topic of the first decad. Sevaa Yogyatwan 
means * worship-worthiness.' God is Sevaa Yogya because He has 
T%iimaiai as His, abode, -because' He is sought after by Acharyas, 
Alwars , and ^Maharishis, because He is served by Vishvaksena, 
andsunround^i by Sri Devi; Bhoodevi, .and Neela Devi, and became 
He is himself; an ocean of grace, mercy r compassion and sympathy 
towards* all. 

The topic of ; the second decad is " ati-bhogyatwa " or the 
exceedingly enjoyable quality of God. The -slokas of this ^ecad 
while ^dealing with the- greatness of Daya, eadi in its own way, 
are cBIlectively calculated to emphasise how God is sweet arid 
enjoyable to His 'devotees. Praise of Bayaa^ a quality of God 
-ib really praise of the Dayaa-van'^?rqF^the i possessor bf Daya. 



| (??) 

Anuchara Saktyaadi gunaam Agresara bodha virachitaa-lokaam i 
Swaadheena Vrishagireesam Swayamprabhootaam Pramaanayaami 

Dayaam " (1 1) 



L swear Dy uaya, wtio lias snaioi ana outer attnmues (p 

|, as her retinue (followers), who has her path lighted (illnmin 
liana going ahead, who wields foil sway owr Vrishagi 
I SrMvasa), and who is by herself immense and immeasm 

No .sooner than the Poet said that he was going to praise 3 
, we find Dayadevi herself sallying forth. 

This sloka describes Dayadevi as starting out in all 
sponse, as it were, to the poet's desire to praise her, expr 
e previous verse. Even before one full sloka is uttered i] 
e, she descends and condescends to show herself. Her sank 
isy accessibility is apparent from this. 
Those who have seen processions of the Lords in Tei 
lave noticed how ; the Lord is preceded by several paraphei 
followed by others. Here the poet describes Gnana as prec 
i and the other attributes, Shakti, Bala etc., as following 
Six attributes or gunas are usually associated with the 
agavan." They are gnana, bala, aisvarya, veerya, shakt 
, Out of them Desika speaks of gnana as going before 1 
the other five as following in her wake. As is the case 
'prekshas (poetical fancies) of Desika, a very gneat truth und 
poetic description of Dayadevi's procession. *Kno\\ 
: g^W front and indicate where Daya is to function, 
tioning, Daya is backed up by the otter five attributes wi 
;e support the protection afforded by Daya will not be con 
fective. So they are described as anucharaas or followers 

Daya is itself, an attribute of the Lord. Ao we shall see, 
ka, postulates the supremacy of Daya over all His other r 
attributes. In this sloka, the chief six attributes (ishad-g 
hown as helping Daya in her mission of bringing relief, re 
redemption, to suffering humanity. 
' Aaloka ' means light, lustre, brightness. Here that: b 
is brought, about by gnana which is described as going in 
)aya. When great personages walk in public, an atte; 
ing a torch or a lamp shows the way in front, often als 
lifLg, ", This way,' 'This way.' 

By .referring to Daya as " Svaad/wena-wiskygireesaa ' 

shows to, us how completely Lord Srinivasa is under E 

r or control. Her purpose is so noble and is so much 

Lord's, own heart that He, so to. say, surrenders Himself 



12 BAYAA SATAKAM 

her. The manner and the measure in which He does so is tl 
theme of several later slokao. This surrender is born not out 
fear or subordination, but out of a spirit of harmony (Aikaras: 
^Rf? in regard to the object in view. 

Lest one should think that the greatness of Daya is entire 
due to her being the consort of the Lord, the poet adds, " svaya 
prabhootam" conveying to us thereby that by herself she is immen 
and supreme. 

The word * pramaanayaami ' in this sloka is not easy to unde 
stand. Pramana is authority and hence validity. The poet eviden 
ly intends to establish the validity of Daya. This term has als 
been taken to mean a * measure.' In that view we have to take 
that Desika says that in singing this Stotra in her praise he is real] 
attempting to measure the immeasurable. Another meaning, 
permissible, will also be very apt. Till Desika wrote the Daya* 
sataka there was no textual authority postulating the supremac 
of Daya. It may not be an exaggerated claim to make that ft; 
the prameya (object of knowledge) of Daya, Daya Sataka is th 
pramaana, (authority). 



Apt nikhila loka sucharitamushtindhaya durita moorchanaajushtar 
Sanjeevayati daye maam anjanagirinaatha ranjanee bhavatee. (12 

Daya Devi! Acting in a manner very pleasing to the Lord o 
Anjanagiri (Lord Srinivasa), 5 , i-evive and restore me to life from 
state of stupor into which I was plunged by my sins which are powerfi] 
enough to devour at one gulp all the virtuous deeds of the entire world 

From this sloka onwards the Poet addresses Daya and all th 
slokas are couched in the second person. Desika in this slok; 
says with a great sense of thankfulness that while he had swoonec 
away under the vast load of hu sins, Daya took pity on him an< 
restored him to consciousness. To the devout, living in sin wit! 
no thought for God, is death. From that state Daya redeem 
human souls. Most modestly, Desika refers to himself as one such 
so redeemed and restored to life. Sanjeevanam means giving life 
The heavy load of sin smothers one's own existence and brings abou 
a state akin to death. Just as some famous oshadhis (herbs)brin| 
back to life those who are almost dead, Daya revives us. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

The sins committed by us must be felt by us to be big en< 
to devour, or to use a slightly different metaphor, consume, al 
rood deeds done by all else throughout the whole world. Mus 
ihaya signifies sipping from one's own fist or palm and swallo 
in one gulp, as Sage Agasthya did with the seven seas. Our 
are so vast that they can devour and reduce to nothing all 
sukrita (good deeds) and all the sucharita (good conduct) o 
whole world taken together. They reduce us to a state ak: 
death, and yet from that state of moorchana or stupor, w 
revived by Daya. 

There is a paata TO or reading for this sloka in which sanj 
yatu takee the place of sanjeevayatf. In that paata the me< 
is ' May Daya revive me. 1 

Daya is referred to in this sloka as anjanagirinaatha ran 
which means one who delights Anjanagirinaatha (Srinivasa 
may be that it is because she is so dear to the Lord that she is 
to infuse life into our dead and dormant selves. Or it may be 
she is so very dear to the Lord because she gives us life. 

This sloka is regarded as a great Mantra. Acharyas 
prescribed its ' aavritti ' (repetition) to their disciples as a pai 
for several ills that beset the latter in their progress, mater: 
spiritual. 



Bhagavati Day el bhavatyaa Vrishagirinaathe samaaplute ti 
Apratighamajjanaanaam hastaalambo madaaghasaam mrigyaha, 
Glorious Dayadevi! When even the high and lofty Lord of V] 
giri floats in the flood caused by you, my sins which inescapafo) 
drowned will have to seek in vain for a helping hand to come to 
rescue (and lift them up). 

While in the preceding sloka the Poet dealt with his h 
been rescued and revived, in this he talks about the subme 
(and consequent extinction) of Irs sins. Daya is likened to a j 
an analogy in which the poet revels often in the course of this S 
It is such a big and huge flood that it sweeps even the high-p 
Lord off His feet. This sloka shows that the re-vivificationbr< 
about by Daya as mentioned in the previous sloka is the effc 
the extinction of our sins. 



DA YAA SATAKAM 

^SECOND DEGAD. 



Introduction. 

FROM the llth slbka to the 20th, the metre employed is wh 
is known as Geetl This, like the well known Aarya, is 
metre regulated not by syllables or aksharaas, but by maatra 
or syllabic instants. A change of the metre for every ten slok 
studiedly employed by a poet is an indication to the readers th 
there is a change of topic with every change of metre. For f t] 
ten decads of this Stotra proper, the ten topics of Dramidopanish 
(Nammalwar's Tiruvoimozhi) as summarised by Desika himse 
in his Dramidopamshad* Saaram and * Dramidopanishdd Taatpar^ 
Ratnaavali have been adopted as the topics. Accordingly " Sevc 
Yogyatwam was the topic of the first decad. Sevaa Yogyatwa 
means * worship-worthiness.' -God is Sevaa Yogya because He hi 
T^mmalai as Hk abode, 'because' He is sought after by Acharya 
Alwars and ^Mahajishis, /became He is serwd by Vishvak&en; 
aiiid sumoiinded by Sri Devi, Bhoddevi, and Neela Devi, and becaut 
He is himself an ocean of grace, mercy,, compassion and sympath 
itowatds, all. 

The topic of f the second decad is *' ati-bhogyatwa " or tt 
exceedingly enjoyable quality t>f God. The slokas of this deca 
while dealing with the* greatness of Daya, each in its own wa] 
are effectively calculated to emphasise how God is sweet aii 
-ejajoyiable to His^ : devotees. Praise of Dayaa a quality of God- 
*is really praise 6f the Dayaa-van*^?fqF^the possessor 6f Daya. 



I (??) 

Anuchara Saktyaadi gunaam Agresara bodha virachitaa-lokaam 
Swaadheena Vrishagireesam Swayamprabhootaam Pramaanayaam 

Dayaam " (11 



AYAA> SATAKAM 

I swear by Daya, who has Shakti and other attributes (c 
Lord) as her retinue (followers), who has her path lighted (Hlurnk 
by 43ana going ahead, who wields Ml sway orar Vrishagi 
(Lord Srinivasa), and who is by herself immense and immeasu] 

No .sooner than the Poet said that he was going to praise .; 
Devi, we find Dayadevi herself sallying forth. 

This sloka describes Dayadevi as starting out in all 
in response, as it were, to the poet's desire to praise her, expr 
in ithe previous verse. Even before one full sloka is uttered i 
-praise, she descends and condescends to show herself. Her muk 
or easy accessibility is apparent from this. 

Those who have seen processions of the Lords in Tea 
will have noticed how the Lord is preceded by several paraphei 
and followed by others. Here the poet describes Gnana as prec 
Daya and the other attributes, Shakti, Bala etc., as following 

Six attributes or gunas are usually associated with the 
" Bhagavan." They are gnana, bala, aisvarya, veerya, shakt 
tejas. Out of them Desika speaks of gnana as going before ] 
and the other five as following in her wake. As is the case 
all w/^reA:^/z^(pOEtbalfani:ies)*of Desika, a very great truth und 
this poetic description of "Dayadevf s , procession. Know 
must gonitf front 1 and indicate where Daya is to function, 
functioning, Daya is backed up by the other five attributes wi 
whose support the protection afforded by Daya will not be con 
or effective. So they are described as anucharaas or followers 

Daya is itself, an attribute of the Lord. Ao we shall see 
Desika, postulates the supremacy of Daya over all His other.i 
FOUS .attributes. In this sloka, the chief six attributes (f$had- 
are shown as helping Daya in her mission of bringing relief, re 
and redemption, to suffering humanity. 

' Aaloka ' means light, lustre, brightness. Here that b 
; ness is brought, about by gnana which is described as, going in 
of Daya. When great personages walk in public, an atte 
.holding a torch or a lamp shows the way in front, often als 
daiming, ' This way,' * This way.' 

Py ,' onefertimg to Daya as " Svaadkeena-wfakagmesaa '' 
-poet shows! to, us how completely Lord Srinivasa is under I 
sway or. control. Her, purpose is so noble and is so much 
the Lord's, own heart that He, so to say, surrenders Himself 



II 

DAYAA SATAKAM 

''SECOND DECAD. 



Introduction. 

FROM the llth slbka to the 20th, the metre employed is wha 
is' known as'Geeti. 'This, Jike the well known Aarya, is t 
metre regulated not by syllables or aksharaas, but by maatraat 
or syllabic instants. A change of the metre for every ten slokas 
studiedly employed by a poet is an indication to the readers that 
there is a change of topic with every change of metre. For the 
ten decads of this Stotra proper, the ten topics of Dramidopanishaa 
(Nammalwar V Tiruvoimozhi) as summarised by Desika himself 
in his Dramidopanishad* Saaram and * Dramidopanishad Taatparya 
Ratnaav&li have been adopted as the, topics. Accordingly " Sevaa 
Yogyutwam was^ the topic of the first decad. Sevaa Yogyatwam 
means * worship-worthiness.' God is Sevaa Yogya because He has 
Timmalai as His abode, ^becaase* He is sought after by Acharyas, 
Alwars and ^Maharishis, because He is served by Vishvaksena, 
aadsiin-ounded by 'Sri Devi, Bhoddevi, and Neela Devi, and because 
He is himself aa oe&an of ^race, mercy, compassion and sympathy 
towards all. 

The topic of the second decad is " ati-bhogyatwa " or the 
exceedingly enjoyable quality of God. The slokas of this decad 
whMe dealing with the* greatness of Daya, eateh in its own way, 
are effectively calculated to emphasise how God is sweet arid 
enjoyable to- His "devotees. Praise of Dayaa a quality of God 
is really praise of the Dayaa-van'^RT^the" possessor Of Daya. 



^^Sl^F?^ 



Anmhara Saktyaadi gmaam Agresam bodha nrachitaa-lokaam i 
bwaadheena Vrishagireesam Swayamprabhootaam Pramaanayaami 

Dayaam \\ (\ 1) 



AAA SATAKAM 11 

I swear- by Daya, who has Shakti and other attributes (of Hie 
Lord), as her retinae (followers), who has her path lighted (illominated) 

by Guana going ahead, who widds full sway oyer Vrishaglreesa 
(Lord Srinivasa), and who is by /herself immense and iinraeaserable. 

No .sooner than the Poet said that he was going to praise Daya 
Devi, we .find Dayadevi herself sallying forth. 

This sloka describes Dayadevi as starting out in all glory 
in response, as it were, to the poet's desire to praise her, expressed 
iitMie previous verse. Even before one full sloka is uttered in her 
praise, she descends and condescends to show herself. Her saulabkya 
or easy accessibility is apparent from this. 

Those who have seen processions of the Lords in Temples 
will have noticed how the Lord is preceded by several paraphernalia 
and followed by others. Here the poet describes Gnana as preceding 
Daya and the dther attributes, Shakti, Bala etc., as following her. 

Six attributes or gunas are usually associated with the term 
" Bhagavan." They are gmna, bala, aisvarya, veerya, shakti and 
tejas. Out of them Desika speaks of guana as going before Daya, 
and the other five as following in her wake. As is the case with 
all w^re^/z^(postroal fancies) of Desika, a very great Irijth underlies 
this poetic description of "Dayadevf s . procession. ^Knowledge 
must gcxW front and indicate where Daya is to function. In so 
functioning, Daya is backed up by the, other five attributes without 
whose support the protection afforded by Daya will not be complete 
or effective. So they are described as anucharaas or followers. 

Daya is itself, an attribute of the Lord. Ao we shall see later, 
Desika postulates the supremacy of Daya over all His other nume- 
rous attributes. In this sloka, the chief six attributes ^shad-gima!) 
are shown as helping Daya in her mission of bringing relief, redress, 
arid redemption, to suffering humanity. 

' Aaloka ' means light, lustre, brightness. Here that bright- 
ness is brought- about by gnana which is described as going in front 
of Daya. When great personages walk in public, an attendant 
holding a torch or a lamp shows the way in front, often also ex- 
daiming, '*This way,' 6 This way.' 

-By /inferring to Daya as " Svaadkeena-vrishmgmema " the 
poet shows: to, us how completely Lord Srinivasa -is under Daya's 
sway or control. Her purpose is so noble and is so much . after 
the Lord's, own heart that He, so to say, surrenders Himself unto 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

. The manner and the measure in which He does so is tt 
me of several later slokao. This surrender is born not out < 
: or subordination, but out of a spirit of harmony (Aikaras> 
'& in regard to the object in view. 

Lest one should think that the greatness of Daya is entire] 
to her being the consort of the Lord, the poet adds, " svayat 
bhootam" conveying to us thereby that by herself she is immens 
. supreme. 

The word * pramaanayaami } in this sloka is not easy to undei 
id. Pramana is authority and hence validity. The poet evident 
ntends to establish the validity of Daya. This term has als< 
a taken to mean a * measure.' In that view we have to take i 
; Desika says that in singing this Stotra in her praise he is reall; 
mpting to measure the immeasurable. Another meaning, i 
nissible, will also be very apt. Till Desika wrote the Dayaa 
ka there was no textual authority postulating the supremacy 
)aya. It may not be an exaggerated claim to make that fp ( 
prameya (object of knowledge) of Daya, Daya Sataka is th< 
naana, (authority). 



nikhila loka sucharitamushtindhaya durita moorchanaajushtam 
'eevayati daye maam anjanagirinaatha ranjanee bhavatee. (12] 
Daya Devi! Acting in a manner very pleasing to the Lord ol 
nagiri (Lord Srinivasa), 5 . k revive and restore me to life from a 
of stupor into which I was plunged by my sins which are powerful 
gh to devour at one gdp all the virtuous deeds of the entire world. 
From this sloka onwards the Poet addresses Daya and all the 
is ^ are couched in the second person. Desika in this sloka 
with a great sense of thankfulness that while he had swooned 
r under the vast load of hij sins, Daya took pity on him and 
red him to consciousness. To the devout, living in sin with 
bought for God, is death. From that state Daya redeems 
m souls. Most modestly, Desika refers to himself as one such, 
deemed and restored to life. Sanjeevanam means giving life! 
teavy load of sin smothers one's own existence and brings about 
te akin to death. Just as some famous oshadhis (herbs)bring 
to life those who are almost dead, Daya revives us. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

The sins committed by us must be felt by us to be big er 
to devour, or to use a slightly different metaphor, consume, a 
good deeds done by all else throughout the whole world. Mu 
dhaya signifies sipping from one's own fist or palm and swalk 
in one gulp, as Sag!) Agasthya did with the seven seas. Ou 
are so vast that they can devour and reduce to nothing al 
sukrita (good deeds) and all the sucharita (good conduct) c 
whole world taken together. They reduce us to a state ak 
death, and yet from that state of moorchana or stupor, v> 
revived by Daya. 

There is a paata JI3 or reading for this sloka in which san^ 
yatu take? the place of sanjeevayati. In that paata the me 
is ' May Daya revive me.' 

Daya is referred to in this sloka as anjanagirinaatha rat 
which means one who delights Anjanagirinaatha (Srinivasa 
may be that it is because she is so dear to the Lord that she ii 
to infuse life into our dead and dormant selves. Or it may b< 
she is so very dear to the Lord because she gives us life. 

This sloka is regarded as a great Mantra. Acharyas 
prescribed its * aavritti ' (repetition) to their disciples as a pa 
for several ills that beset the latter in their progress, mater 
spiritual. 



Bhagavati Daye! bhavatyaa Vrishagirinaathe samaaplute t\ 
4pratighamajjanaanaam hastaalambo madaaghasaam mrigyaha, 

Glorious Dayadevi! When even the high and lofty Lord of V: 
pri floats in the flood caused by you, my sins which inescapabl 
Irowned will have to seek in vain for a helping hand to come to 
*escue (and lift them up). 

While in the preceding sloka the Poet dealt with his h 
seen rescued and revived, in this he talks about the subme 
and consequent extinction) of Irs sins. Daya is likened to a \ 
in analogy in which the poet revels often in the course of this S 
[t is such a big and huge flood that it sweeps even the high-p 
Lord off His feet. This sloka shows that the re-vi vification br< 



12 DAYAA SATAKAM 

her. The manner and the measure in which He does so is 
theme of several later slokao. This surrender is bora not out of 
fear or subordination, but out of a spirit of harmony (Aikarasya- 
$3^6? in regard to the object in view. 

Lest one should think that the greatness of Daya is entirely 
due to her being the consort of the Lord, the poet adds, " svayarn 
prabhootam" conveying to us thereby that by herself she is immense 
and supreme. 

The word * pramaanayaami ' in this sloka is not easy to under- 
stand. Pramana is authority and hence validity. The poet evident- 
ly intends to establish the validity of Daya. This term has also 
been taken to mean a ' measure.' In that view we have to take it 
that Desika says that in singing this Stotra in her praise he is really 
attempting to measure the immeasurable. Another meaning, if 
permissible, will also be very apt. Till Desika wrote the Dayaa- 
sataka there was no textual authority postulating the supremacy 
of Daya. It may not be an exaggerated claim to make that fqf 
the prameya (object of knowledge) of Daya, Daya Sataka is the 
pramaana, (authority). 



Apt nikhila loka sucharitamushtindhaya durita moorchanaajushtarh 
Sanjeevayati daye maam anjanagirinaatha ranjanee bhavatee. (12) 

Daya Devi! Acting in a manner very pleasing to the Lord of 
Anjanagiri (Lord Srinivasa), ^ . k revive and restore me to life from a 
state of stupor into which I was plunged by my sins which are powerful 
enough to devour at one golp all the virtuous deeds of the entire world. 

From this sloka onwards the Poet addresses Daya and all the 
slokas are couched in the second person. Desika in this sloka 
says with a great sense of thankfulness that while he had swooned 
away under the vast load of hij sins, Daya took pity on him and 
restored him to consciousness. To the devout, living in sin with 
no thought for God, is death. From that state Daya redeems 
human souls. Most modestly, Desika refers to himself as one such, 
so redeemed and restored to life. Sanjeevanam means giving life, 
The heavy load of sin smothers one's own existence and brings about 
a state akin to death. Just as some famous oshadhis (herbs)bring 
back to life those who are almost dead, Daya revives us. 



me sins committed oy us must De telt by us to be big enougn 
vour, or to use a slightly different metaphor, consume, all the 
deeds done by all else throughout the whole world. Mushtin- 
i signifies sipping from one's own fist or palm and swallowing 
ie gulp, as Sag? Agasthya did with the seven seas. Our sins 
3 vast that they can devour and reduce to nothing all the 
ta (good deeds) and all the sucharita (good conduct) of the 
5 world taken together. They reduce us to a state akin to 
i, and yet from that state of moorchana or stupor, we are 
sd by Daya. 

There is apaata TO or reading for this sloka in which sanjeeva- 
takep the place of sanjeevayati. In that paata the meaning 
Azy Daya revive me/ 

Daya is referred to in this sloka as anjanagirinaatha ranjanee 
i means one who delights Anjanagirinaatha (Srinivasa). It 
be that it is because she is so dear to the Lord that she is able 
use life into our dead and dormant selves. Or it may be that 
i so very dear to the Lord because she gives us life. 

Phis sloka is regarded as a great Mantra. Acharyas have 
ribed its * aavritti ' (repetition) to their disciples as a panacea 
sveral ills that beset the latter in their progress, material or 
ual. 



ivati Day el bhavatyaa Vrishagirinaathe samaaplute tunge \ 
ighamajjanaanaam hastaalambo madaaghasaam mrigyaha."(lfy 
Jlorious Dayadevi! When even the high and lofty Lord of Vrisha- 
oats in the flood caused by you, my sins which inescapably get 
led will have to seek in vain for a helping hand to come to their 
i (and lift them up). 

Vhile in the preceding sloka the Poet dealt with his having 
rescued and revived, in this he talks about the submerging 
consequent extinction) of Irs sins. Daya is likened to a flood, 
ilogy in which the poet revels often in the course of this Stotra. 
;uch a big and huge flood that it sweeps even the high-placed 
off His feet. This sloka shows that the re-vivification brought 
: by Daya as mentioned in the previous sloka is the effect of 
ctinction of our sins. 



12 DAYAA SATAKAM 

her. The manner and the measure in which He does so is t 
theme of several later sloka-i. This surrender is born not out 
fear or subordination, but out of a spirit of harmony (Aikaras 
q^R6g in regard to the object in view. 

Lest one should think that the greatness of Daya is entire 
due to her being the consort of the Lord, the poet adds, " svaya 
prabhootam" conveying to us thereby that by herself she is immen 
and supreme. 

The word * pramaanayaami * in this sloka is not easy to unde 
stand. Pramana is authority and hence validity. The poet eviden 
ly intends to establish the validity of Daya. This term has als 
been taken to mean a ' measure.' In that view we have to take 
that Desika says that in singing this Stotra in her praise he is real) 
attempting to measure the immeasurable. Another meaning, : 
permissible, will also be very apt. Till Desika wrote the Dayag 
sataka there was no textual authority postulating the supremac 
of Daya. It may not be an exaggerated claim to make that fq 
the prameya (object of knowledge) of Daya, Daya Sataka is th 
pramaana, (authority). 



Apt nikhila loka sucharitamushtindhaya durita moor chanaajusht art 
Sanjeevayatf daye maam anjanagirinaatha ranjanee bhavatee. (12 
Daya Devi! Acting in a manner very pleasing to the Lord oi 
Anjanagiri (Lord Srinivasa), 5 .. i-evive and restore me to life from a 
state of stupor into which I was plunged by my sins which are powerful 
enough to devour at one gulp all the virtuous deeds of the entire world. 

From this sloka onwards the Poet addresses Daya and all the 
slokas are couched in the second person. Desika in this sloka 
says with a great sense of thankfulness that while he had swooned 
away under the vast load of 1m sins, Daya took pity on him and 
restored him to consciousness. T5 the devout, living in sin with 
no thought for God, is death. From that state Daya redeems 
human souls. Most modestly, Desika refers to himself as one such, 
.so redeemed and restored to life. Sanjeevanam means giving life. 
The heavy load of sin smothers one's own existence and brings about 
a state akin to death. Just as some famous oshadhis (herbs)bring 
back to life those who are almost dead, Daya revives us. 



me sins committee Dy us must De leit Dy us to De Dig en 
vour, or to use a slightly different metaphor, consume, a 
deeds done by all else throughout the whole world. MIL 
i signifies sipping from one's own fist or palm and swallc 
te gulp, as Sag!; Agasthya did with the seven seas. Ou: 
3 vast that they can devour and reduce to nothing al 
ta (good deeds) and all the sucharita (good conduct) o 
3 world taken together. They reduce us to a state ak 
i, and yet from that state of moorchana or stupor, w 
3d by Daya. 

There is a paata <TB or reading for this sloka in which sanj 
take? the place of sanjeevayati. In that paata the me; 
vlay Daya revive me.' 

Daya is referred to in this sloka as anjanagirinaatha ran 
i means one who delights Anjanagirinaatha (Srinivasa 
be that it is because she is so dear to the Lord that she is 
:use life into our dead and dormant selves. Or it may be 
i so very dear to the Lord because she gives us life. 

This sloka is regarded as a great Mantra. Acharyas 
ribed its * aavritti * (repetition) to their disciples as a pai 
^veral ills that beset the latter in their progress, mater 
ual. 



ivati Daye! bhavatyaa Vrishagirinaathe samaaplute ti 
'ighamajjanaanaam hastaalambo madaaghasaam mrigyaha. 
jlorious Dayadevi! When even the high and lofty Lord of Vi 
oats in the flood caused hy you, my sins which inescapahl 
led will have to seek in vain for a helping hand to come to 
s (and lift them up). 

Vhile in the preceding sloka the Poet dealt with his h; 
rescued and revived, in this he talks about the subme 
consequent extinction) of h ; s sins. Daya is likened to a f 
alogy in which the poet revels often in the course of this Si 
mch a big and huge flood that it sweeps even the high-p 
off His feet. This sloka shows that the re-vivification brc 



12 OAYAA SATAKAM 

her. The manner and the measure in which He does so is tl 
theme of several later sloka^. This surrender is born not out < 
fear or subordination, but out of a spirit of harmony (Aikaras} 
{refi^ in regard to the object in view. 

Lest one should think that the greatness of Daya is entire] 
due to her being the consort of the Lord, the poet adds, " svaycu 
prabhootam" conveying to us thereby that by herself she is immens 
and supreme. 

The word ' pramaanayaami * in this sloka is not easy to undei 
stand. Pramana is authority and hence validity. The poet evidem 
ly intends to establish the validity of Daya. This term has als 
been taken to mean a * measure.' In that view we have to take i 
that Desika says that in singing this Stotra in her praise he is reall 
attempting to measure the immeasurable. Another meaning, i 
permissible, will also be very apt. Till Desika wrote the Dayaa 
sataka there was no textual authority postulating the supremac 
of Daya. It may not be an exaggerated claim to make that fg 
the prameya (object of knowledge) of Daya, Daya Sataka is th 
pramaana, (authority). 



Apt nikhila loka sucharitamushtindhaya durita moorchanaajushtari 
Sanjeevayati daye maam anjanagirinaatha ranjanee bhavatee. (12 

Daya Devi! Acting in a manner very pleasing to the Lord o; 
Anjanagiri (Lord Srinivasa), 5 , .*. revive and restore me to life from 2 
state of stupor into which I was plunged by my sins which are powerfu 
enough to devour at one golp all the virtuous deeds of the entire world 

From this sloka onwards the Poet addresses Daya and all the 
slokas are couched in the second person. Desika in this sloks 
says with a great sense of thankfulness that while he had swoonec 
away under the vast load of hi3 sins, Daya took pity on him and 
restored him to consciousness. To the devout, living in sin with 
no thought for God, is death. From that state Daya redeems 
human souls. Most modestly, Desika refers to himself as one such. 
.so redeemed and restored to life. Sanjeevanam means giving life. 
The heavy load of sin smothers one's own existence and brings about 
a state akin to death. Just as some famous oshadhis (herbs)bring 
back to life those who are almost dead, Daya revives us. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

The sins committed by us must be felt by us to be big er 
to devour, or to use a slightly different metaphor, consume, a 
good deeds done by all else throughout the whole world. Mu 
dhaya signifies sipping from one's own fist or palm and swallc 
in one gulp, as Sag:; Agasthya did with the seven seas. Ou 
are so vast that they can devour and reduce to nothing a! 
sukrita (good deeds) and all the sucharita (good conduct) c 
whole world taken together. They reduce us to a state ak 
death, and yet from that state of moorchana or stupor, \s 
revived by Daya. 

There is a paata TO or reading for this sloka in which san 
yatu take? the place of sanjeevayati. In that paata the me 
is ' May Daya revive me.' 

Daya is referred to in this sloka as anjanagirinaatha rat 
which means one who delights Anjanagirinaatha (Srinivasa 
may be that it is because she is so dear to the Lord that she ii 
to infuse life into'otir dead and dormant selves. Or it may b< 
she is so very dear to the Lord because she gives us life. 

This sloka is regarded as a great Mantra. Acharyas 
prescribed its ' aavritti ' (repetition) to their disciples as a pa 
for several ills that beset the latter in their progress, mater 
spiritual. 



Bhagavati Day el bhavatyaa Vrishagirinaathe samaaplute t\ 
Apratighamajjanaanaam hastaalambo madaaghasaam mrigyaha 
Glorious Dayadevi! When even the high and lofty Lord of V 
giri floats in the flood caused hy you, my sins which inescapah 
drowned will have to seek in vain for a helping hand to come to 
rescue (and lift them up). 

While in the preceding sloka the Poet dealt with his h 
been rescued and revived, in this he talks about the subme 
(and consequent extinction) of Irs sins. Daya is likened to a : 
an analogy in which the poet revels often in the course of this S 
It is such a big and huge flood that it sweeps even the high-p 
Lord off His feet. This sloka shows that the re-vivification br< 
about by Daya as mentioned in the previous sloka is the eff< 
the extinction of our sins. 



12 DAYAA SATAKAM 

her. The manner and the measure in which He does so is th 
theme of several later slokao. This surrender is born not out o 
fear or subordination, but out of a spirit of harmony (Aikarasy* 
^j^?? in regard to the object in view. 

Lest one should think that the greatness of Daya is entirel) 
due to her being the consort of the Lord, the poet adds, " svayan 
prabhootam" conveying to us thereby that by herself she is immense 
and supreme. 

The word ' pramaanayaami ' in this sloka is not easy to under- 
stand. Pramana is authority and hence validity. The poet evident- 
ly intends to establish the validity of Daya. This term has also 
been taken to mean a * measure.' In that view we have to take it 
that Desika says that in singing this Stotra in her praise he is really 
attempting to measure the immeasurable. Another meaning, if 
permissible, will also be very apt. Till Desika wrote the Dayaa- 
sataka there was no textual authority postulating the supremacy 
of Daya. It may not be an exaggerated claim to make that fpj- 
the prameya (object of knowledge) of Daya, Daya Sataka is the 
pramaana, (authority) . 



Apt nikhila loka sucharitamushtindhaya durita moorchanaajushtam 
Sanjeevayati daye maam anjanagirinaatha ranjanee bhavatee. (12) 

Daya Devi! Acting in a manner very pleasing to the Lord of 
Anjanagiri (Lord Srinivasa), } . \ i-evive and restore me to life from a 
state of stupor into which I was plunged by my sins which are powerful 
enough to devour at one golp all the virtuous deeds of the entire world. 

From this sloka onwards the Poet addresses Daya and all the 
slokas are couched in the second person. Desika in this sloka 
says with a great sense of thankfulness that while he had swooned 
away under the vast load of hu sins, Daya took pity on him and 
restored him to consciousness. T<D the devout, living in sin with 
no thought for God, is death. From that state Daya redeems 
human souls. Most modestly, Desika refers to himself as one such, 
.so redeemed and restored to life. Sanjeevanam means giving life. 
The heavy load of sin smothers one's own existence and brings about 
a state akin to death. Just as some famous oshadhis (herbs)bring 
back to life those who are almost dead, Daya revives us. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

The sins committed by us must be felt by us to be big en 
to devour, or to use a slightly different metaphor, consume, a 
good deeds done by all else throughout the whole world. Mu, 
dhaya signifies sipping from one's own fist or palm and swallc 
in one gulp, as Sag? Agasthya did with the seven seas. Oui 
are so vast that the> can devour and reduce to nothing al 
sukrita (good deeds) and all the sucharita (good conduct) o 
whole world taken together. They reduce us to a state ak 
death, and yet from that state of moorchana or stupor, w 
revived by Daya. 

There is a paata IB or reading for this sloka in which sanj 
yatu take? the place of sanjeevayatL In that paata the me* 
is ' May Daya revive me.' 

Daya is referred to in this sloka as anjanagirinaatha ran 
which means one who delights Anjanagirinaatha (Srinivasa" 
may be that it is because she is so dear to the Lord that she is 
to infuse life into otir dead and dormant selves. Or it may be 
she is so very dear to the Lord because she gives us life. 

This sloka is regarded as a great Mantra. Acharyas 
prescribed its ' aavritti ' (repetition) to their disciples as a par 
for several ills that beset the latter in their progress, materi 
spiritual. 



Bhagavati Daye! bhavatyaa Vrishagirinaathe samaaplute tu 
Apratighamajjanaanaam hastaalambo madaaghasaam mrigyaha.\ 
Glorious Dayadevi! When even the high and lofty Lord of Vr 
giri floats in the flood caused by you, my sins which inescapabl; 
drowned will have to seek in vain for a helping hand to come to 
rescue (and lift them up). 

While in the preceding sloka the Poet dealt with his he 
been rescued and revived, in this he talks about the submei 
(and consequent extinction) of Irs sins. Daya is likened to a fl 
an analogy in which the poet revels often in the course of this St 
It is such a big and huge flood that it sweeps even the high-pi 
Lord off His feet. This sloka shows that the re-vivification bro 



14 DAYAA SATAKAM 



to a submerging that cannot be wardec 
ofD Before Daya, sins cannot help perishing. Sins produa 
adverse i effect on us, because of the Lord punishing us for them 
Bat when the Lord Himself is drenched by Daya, He pardons ai 
our sins and so, by failing to have effect, in the only waythe^ 
can ever have any effect, they perish. 

The Lord is Tunga or high-placed, lofty. If one at a great 
height is submerged what is to be said of others who are in the 
lower levels? They inescapably get drowned. That is the fate 
which overtakes our sins, since the flood level of Daya is sufficient 
to engulf the lofty Lord Himself. Hastaalamba i& lending a helping 
hand* The punishing mood of the Lord being banished by the 
intervention of Daya, sins get no quarter and so are spoken! of as 
getting drowned. 



Kripanajana kalpalatikaam Kritaaparaadhasya nishkriyaam aadyaami 
Vrishagirinaatha Daye ! tvaam vidanti samsaarataarineem 

vibhuddaha. n (14) 

O Daya of Vrishagirinaatha! you are the Kalpaka Tree (capable 
of bestowing everything that is desired) to helpless persons (who have 
nothing to fall back on). You are the pre-eminent expiation for those 
who have committed heinous crimes. Therefore the learned realise 
that you/ are the sole aid to cross the sea of Samsara. 

Having dealt with the capacity of Daya to restore us to life 
by Bidding us from the evil effects of our siris in the previous two 
slokas, the poet in this sloka postulates the efficacy of Daya in 
redeeming us from Samsara. 

The Kalpaka tree is a tree which is believed to be capable of 
granting all boons desired by those who go underneath it and ask" 
for them. That mythical tree is in Paradise and is useful only to 
the Devas, But Daya is *a similar tree on 1 eaxth and is! capable of 
fulfilling the desires of Krijkmaas, helpless and wretched beingsi The 
next idea brings, out, Dayat's greatness evembetter. Sha is; Nt&hkriymi^ 
aadyam. Nishkriya is* atonement or expiation. A.sinnex target 
cleared of a sin; committed by <hira has to perform certain exptiatory 
ceremonies. Daya effects the cleansing from: sins without: resort to 
such, expiations, aad so she i& said to tothefirat-and foremost^ 01 
rather, the pre-eminent and most potent; fomijof e^pcatibiL: 



DAYAA SATAKAM 15 

Owing to these two great and helpful qualities of hers, Daya 
Devi is relied on as the sole refuge by those who seek release from 
Samsara; and that is what the latter half of the sloka says. Those 
well versed in Sastras have discovered and laid down that to the 
helpless, Daya is the only help, and to the sinner, Daya is the 
sole expiation. Therefore she alone can help us to cross the ocean 
of Samsara in which we are now drifting on a frail boat without a 
rudder. With her help we are sure of crossing that ocean. 



Vrishagiri grihamedhi gunaaha Boda balaiswarya veeryashakti 

mukaaha \ 
Doshaa bhaveyurete Yadinaama daye tvayaa vinabhootaha. (15) 

The Gunas (attributes) of the great Householder residing in 
Vrishagiri (Tirumala), such as knowledge, strength, supremacy, 
prowess, energy etc., these will all become Doshaas or demerits 
if only you were not there; (i.e., if they are bereft of association with 
you). 

Desika is very fond of referring to the Lord as a grihamedhi, 
a householder following the grihastaasrama dharma in the company 
of His wife. At the end of Raghuveera Gadya, Rama with Sita 
by Him is described as a householder with a huge family consisting 
of sons and grandsons like Brahma, Siva and so on. In the first 
sloka of his Yatiraja Saptati, Desika refers to Kamalaagrihamedhi 
(Sreenivasa) as the primordial guru or preceptor. Here we see him 
similarly describing Lord Sreeniva&a of Vrishagiri as a grihamedhi, 

It is a well known fact that all the three other aasramites, 
the Brahmachari, the Vaanaprasta and the Sanyasi, have to look up 
to the Grihasta for help. So a grihasta must be one possessed of 
good, hospitable and protecting qualities. The Lord has innume- 
rable qualities among which six are very well known and referred 
to as shad-gunaas as already noticed. This sloka tells us that all of 
them are gunaas only because of their being associated with Daya, 
and that if only Daya was not also an attribute of the Lord they will 
really be doshaas or blemishes in Him. The poet's intendment is 
clear. To us sinners, no attribute of the Lord is helpful except 



16 DAYAA SATAKAM 

us. But left to function without Daya, all those qualities will 
engage themselves in acts prejudicial to us, because we are sinners. 
Knowledge will be useful to take note of all our transgressions. 
The other qualities will all help in securing for us the punishment 
we deserve. So from our point of view, instead of shining as 
bright and protecting qualities, they will act for our destruction and 
so to us they will appear as blemishes and not otherwise. It is 
only when those other qualities act as handmaids to Daya Devi, 
as described in the llth sloka, we feel we are safe, and praise the 
Lord as a gunavaan, a good-natured person. 

* Doshaa * also means night or darkness of the night. The 
suggestion evidently is that without Daya all the other qualities 
will be shrouded in darkness, and will not shine as they do in her pre- 
sence. 

Yadi-naama (if only) has been used to convey the idea that an 
impossible state of affairs is being envisaged. For, the Lord is 
always a God of Mercy and where is the chance of Daya being 
absent? 

This sloka is the first of several others in this stotra which aim 
at postulating the supremacy of Daya over all the other qualities 
of the Lord, a supremacy that makes her ' Guneswari ' 
(in sloka 101 post) meaning ' Empress among the gunaas. 

[Readers will have noticed how in all the first five slokas of this second 
decad the term used is uniformly ' Daya: In the next five slokas it will be seen 
that the term ' Karuna ' is invariably used in all of them. It will be a nice 
subject for study by scholars and savants what the exact meaning and connotation 
of each of the four words Daya, Karuna, Kripa, and Anukampa which Desika 
employs in this stotra, are. We can give rough English equivalents for each of 
them thus Daya=Mercy; KaranaPity, Compassion; Krip a =Grace- 
Anukampa = Sympathy.] 



Aasrishti santataanaam Apamadhaanaam nirodhineemjagataha 

Padmaasahaaya Karme Pratisanchara Kelimaacharasi. u (16) 

O! Daya of the Consort of Padmavati! With a view to put a 

stop to the sins and errors of the creatures of the world which have 

been continually committed ever since creation, you bring about 

pralaya (dissolution of the universe) in a sportful mood, even Hke 

the retreat of a danseuse from the front to the rear of the stage. 



HAYAA SATAKAM 

The full import of this sloka can be understood only by pe 
well versed in Bharata-Shastra, or the science of dancing. . 
sanchara means 6 moving backwards.' As a Kelt (play or j 
is referred to, the moving backwards during dancing is whs 
poet is alluding to. The dissolution of the world at the end 
Kalpa (a long period of time made up of several yugas) is 
a * moving back ' ; hence the word * pratisanchara ' has cor 
denote pralaya itself. 

This pralaya is described in this sloka as an act of Daya. 
is to say, it is an act of mercy on the part of the Lord. In the 
sloka, creation is going to be described as an act of merely 
But the Chetanas who are all given a body each at the time of 
tion and projected into the world for working out their redemi 
fail to do so. Instead they get into evil ways in thought 
and deed. If you give a person a boat to cross a stream a 
you find that instead of crossing the stream the man floats < 
the stream allowing himself to be carried along by the curre 
certain destruction, do you not wish that you had never , 
him the boat? So too Daya Devi who was responsible for g 
souls a body for working out their redemption, finds that 
the help of the very body each soul is drifting into greater 
greater depths of sinfulness and she cries halt to the w 
process and brings about pralaya. This is the central idea c 
poet in describing pralaya as a sport of Daya Devi. 

In the analogy of dancing, a danseuse (ballet dancer) s 
abhinaya of a particular Padam. But after a time she finds 
things are not shaping as they ought to. The orchestra supp 
the background music, the songster who has to sing the pa 
the drummer who is to keep time, between them there is nc 
ordination and no unison. Laya or symphony is disturbed. 1 
goes out of hand. Stepping becomes faulty. The poor we 
when she discovers that the several discordant features ca 
be mended to enable her to carry on her abhinaya accordir 
schedule, determines to end the same, and moves backward / 
sanchara in as decent and respectable a style as possible. Tl 
exactly what Daya Devi does when she brings about Pralaya 
is a matter for students of the science of Natya Sastra to s 
the several words employed in the first half of the sloka convey 



18 DAYAA SATAKAM 

and its significance as applied to pralaya. No one without a profi- 
ciency in all the sciences and arts can hope to fully understand 
Desika's works. 



Achidavisishtaanpralaye jantoon avalokya jaata nirveda i 
Karanakalebarayogam vitarasi Vrishasailanaatha Karune tvam.n (17) 

O! Daya of Vrishagirinaatha! Disgusted and depressed at the 
sight of creatures existing, during pralaya, in a state of non-differentia- 
tion from inert and senseless matter, you graciously associate them 
with (i.e., confer on them) sense organs and a body. 



Kaaranam-tu-dhyeaha ^i^\ 5 3far: is the Upanishadic man- 
date. " Reflect upon that which is the ultimate cause." The 
Brahma Sutras start with defining Brahman as " That from which 
creation etc. emanate." Desika establishes in and by the previous 
sloka and this, the great and important part that Daya Devi plays 
in regard to Creation and Pralaya. Though it is usual to mention 
Creation or Srishti before destruction or Pralaya Desika has deli- 
berately sung about pralaya first because without mentioning that 
state one cannot fully understand the process of creation in the 
way Desika wants us to understand it vide the use of the word 
' pralaye ' sra^ meaning " during pralaya " in this sloka. 

Jagat-kaaranatvam or being the cause of creation (of this world) 
is attributed to Daya in this sloka. Her deed it is in truth and fact, 
though to everyone it appears to be the Lord's (sloka 69 post). 
The suggestion is that the Lord creates the world only because 
he is impelled by Daya to do so. 

During pralaya the entire world consisting of jeevas who are 
sentient beings and prakriti which is non-sentient matter is in a 
very subtle (sookshmd) state. To all intents and purposes the 
jeevas are like achit (nonsentient matter). They cannot be 
distinguished from that achit. A sense of nirveda (disgust and 
consequent depression) creeps over Daya and she makes up her 
mind to put an end to that deplorable state of affairs and the remit 
is creation. 



What is creation but the union 01 a soul with a body ana me 
sense organs? This union or yoga gives to each soul or jeeva a 
body and the sense organs. Karanam sf^ff primarily means 
acting, action; and so Karanaas are the instruments aiding one in 
action. They are thus the organs of sense which are the five Gna- 
nendriyas (The five Karmendhriyas are to be grouped with the 
body which is referred to in this sloka as Kalebara). Karana 
oftentimes denotes the three faculties of mind, speech and action 



When the jeeva is associated with a Karana and a Kalebara 
it gets the power to think and act. Daya invests the jeeva or indi- 
vidual soul with this power so that it may get out of the wretched 
state in which it was during pralaya and work out its own salvation 
by thinking, acting and functioning in such a manner that it is able 
to achieve redemption from the endless cycle of births and deaths 
by invoking the Lord's Daya in one of the prescribed modes (upayas) 
and attaining salvation. That is the purpose of creation. 

On the surface it may appear that if pralaya or dissolution 
is Daya Karya or the work of Daya, srishti or creation cannot 
also be said to be the work of Daya and vice versa. But a little 
reflection will show to us that by creation some jeevas will have 
been enabled to attain the goal of existence, i.e., salvation, though 
by far the majority of jeevas may by their failure to walk in the 
path of virtue, land themselves in sin and more sin. Then again 
even if we consider the case of sinners alone, by pralaya which is 
brought about after millions of years, their sinningness and the 
proclivity to go on sinning will be arrested. The potentiality for 
committing sin is like the momentum of a moving body. When 
motion is arrested the momentum disappears though the body 
remains. It is like imprisoning a truant boy within the house 
when on the pretence of going to school, he consistently mis- 
behaves elsewhere. After a time the parents feel the punishment 
must have corrected him or at least removed his evil proclivity 
and send him to school again. That is creation properly under- 
stood and there is no inconsistency in pralaya and srishti both 
being the work of Daya. 

As already hinted at, the use of the word Karuna in these 
slokas indicates that taking pity and compassion at our pitiable 
state, Daya Devi acts in that particular manner. 



20 DAYAA SATAKAM 



Anuguna dasaarpitena Sridhara Karune samaahita snehaa i 
Samayasi tamaprajaanam saastramayena stira pradeepena. (1 

O! Daya of Sridharal you dispel the darkness of your childn 
by the constant and unflickering lamp of Sastras which consists 
a suitably knit wick (of threads) and is ever full of oil. 

The poet employs 5/eyA^-alamkara in this sloka to very effectiv 
ly indicate the meaning he wants to convey. Slesha means pu 
or the employment of words conveying more meanings than on 
all of such meanings being intended. Thus the Shastras are referre 
to as a Lamp. For a lamp there must be a wick which burns an 
gives light. There must be a regular supply of oil which is draw 
through the wick and made incandescent. Such a lamp will disp< 
darkness. A fond mother will light such a lamp and keep it 1 
for the benefit and safety of her children. This is one meaning. 

The other one referring to Shastras is as follows: Day 
abounds in sneha or fondness towards all human beings (Prajaaj 
She lits the lamp of Shastra in the mind when it is in a proper an 
fit state (anuguna dasa). By this glowing lamp, avidya (ignorance 
is dispelled. Shastras are ' stira pradeepas,' constant and one 
pointed, never swerving or flickering. 

One upanishad says that the Lord first created the four-face< 
Brahma to project this world into being and at once gave to hir 
the Vedas. This sloka refers to that. The Vedas are the lamps 
the lamps of knowledge, without which the created beings wi 
merely flounder like men thrown into a pitch-dark pit. 

A lamp burns only because of the oil. It is a piece of con 
summate art on the part of Desika to describe Daya as the 01 
She is the real and true inspiration to progress. Sneha mean 
oil and also affection and love. Daya's affection towards us i 
well known and is described here as samaahita, full. 

In sloka 46 post, the poet is going to refer to this Sastra-prada 
naa by employing another analogy. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 



Rooda vrishaachalapatehpaade Mukhakaanti patralachchaayc* 
Karune \ sukhayasi vinataan Kataaksha vltapai (h) Karaapachey 

palaihL \\ (\\ 

Daya Devi! Taking your origin at the feet of Vristiaachalapat 
you grow up (like a Kalpaka tree) and gladden those who (seek shelt< 
under you) bend down in all humility, by green and cool facial shadi 
(glow) and by fruits that can be plucked by hand from the love] 

branches of Kataaksha, glances. 

In this sloka Daya is again likened to a Kalpaka tree (vie 
Sloka 14 above). She emanates from (has her roots in) Lor 
Srinivasa's feet. Daya is available only to those who seek succoi 
at the Lord's feet. On those who thus bend themselves and pa 
obeisance to those feet she lavishes all boons and benefits. . 
tree will have pleasant and lovely green shades to gladden weai 
travellers who seek shelter under it. So too there is the beautifi 
and exceedingly pleasing sight of the Lord's face which is ecu 
and green, for is He not like a green emerald in colour? A tr 
will have plenty of fruits. This Kalpaka tree also has plentif 
of fruits which are the fourfold purusharthas Dharma, Arth; 
Kama and Moksha. The fruits will hang from boughs or branche 
Here the Kataaksha or gracious glances of the Lord are the bougl 
from which the purushartas have to be got (plucked). Fruits 
a very great height are not easily obtainable. But the fruits 
this tree are easy of reach, but only to those who bend. This 
a peculiar tree from which fruits can be obtained only by tho 
who bend and are humble. Be he a dwarf or a patagonian he a 
get this fruit only if he bends (vinatd). Eleswhere Desika himse 
has stated that whether one be lofty or lowly one can get these frui 
only by being a (pranata) bent and humbled being. * Yatra tung 
(h) a-tungaischa pranatair-grihyate palam/ 

That the created beings can obtain all pleasures 
by invoking Daya is the purport of this sloka. Tt 
pleasure is nothing less than Bhagavat-anubha^ 
of the Lord. The green effulgence of the ~ '~~ 
the upasaka's eyes and mind. The benignant K^^sha from tho 
wonderful eyes of the Lord will place at " "*""" <B ~"" 1 




2 DAYAA SATAKAM 

il the four purusharthas which he can gather without effort. N< 
Bonder the Lord has been enjoyed by Nammalwar as ati-bhogya 
n exceedingly enjoyable personality in the second pathu (centurium 
f his TiruvoimozhL So sweet to look on, so pleasant and s< 
ajoyable, and at the same time so kind and gracious that in res 
onse to one anjali (folded hands) lifted towards His feet, he confer* 
11 boons and benefits. 

The word Vrishachalapate(h) must be taken to govern noi 
nly the Paade coming next to it, but also the words mukha-kant 
ad Kataaksha occuring in the sloka. 



Nayane Vrishaachalendostaaraamaitreem dadhanayaa Karune i 
Dhristastvayaiva janimaan apavargam akrishta pachyam anu- 

bhavati \\ (20) 

Daya Devi! He who at the time of his birth is seen by you, 
ho always carry with you the spontaneous and unaccountable love 
>wing from the eyes of that effulgent Moon (Srinivasa) shining on 
>e Tirumala Hill, such a person enjoys the bliss of Moksha without 
fort, even like a person who reaps a bumper hearvest without 
fling on the fields* 

In the previous sloka the poet referred to all the phalaas or 
uits obtainable from Daya including trivarga and apavarga as 
ferred to in sloka 10 above. But Daya's great desire is to confer 
r erlasting bliss on all her votaries and she is not satisfied with 
ving them only the smaller and impermanent benefits and pleasures. 
> in this sloka Desika says that if a person is blessed with Daya's 
itaaksha at the time of his birth he is sure to obtain Moksha. 

There is a Mahabharata Vakya (text) which says that if at 
e time of one's birth, one is blessed by the gracious glances of 
adhusoodhana that one becomes a satvika, a gnani and always 
inks of attaining moksha. This is referred to in Sri Vaishnava 
mpr&d&yate'Jaayamaana Kataaksha. Desika here postulates 
it it is Daya Devi that impels the Lord to bestow that kataaksha 
certain individuals, of course consistent with their fitness for 
j 'samet^iilvei; : in previous births. 



- DAYAA SATAKAM 23 

Tara Maitree is what is known as love at first sight. That is, 
there is no knowing why that love arises. Daya Devi, it is siad 
here, carries that unaccountable love of the Lord towards the aspirant 
and blesses him with a glance from the Lord's eyes. The Lord 
it would have been noticed has been referred to here as a moon 
shining on the crest of Vrishaachala. A loving glance from a 
lovely Person. Bright and effulgent like the moon, Lord Srinivasa 
bestows His loving and affectionate glances, and the result is that 
the man or woman who is born under such auspices attain salvations 
without much ado. Apavarga is Moksha. Akrishtapachyam is 
crops for which one has not toiled. The toiler is someone else, 
and he is referred to in the next sloka, where we will enjoy the 
grandeur of this sentiment of Desika. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

THIRD DECAD 



[Slokas 21 /o 30 /* couched in the Oupachchandaslka metre 
first and third paadaas contain eleven akskaras while the secom 
fourth contain twelve. The general topic of this decad i 
ha-Subhaga-tanuhu g^gvpTcT^: which is the gist of the thin 
urium of Nammalwar's Tiruvoimozhi, according to Desika 

very second sloka of this decad deals with the auspiciou. 
>/?#) and attractive and beautiful (Subhagd) body (tanuhu) oftfa 
L We shall enjoy it in its place.] 



Samayopanataistava pravaahaihi Anukampel kritasamplavaa 

dharitree \ 

Saranaagata sasyamaalineeyam Vrishasailesa Krisheevalam dhi~ 

noti.n (21) 

Lord's Sympathy personified! This (lady called) Earth gladdens 
leart of) that Farmer, who has Tirumala as His abode, by wearing 
irlands rows and rows of crops in the form of Saranaagataas,as 
lit of her being drenched (irrigated) by timely and copious showers 
mrs. 

To a fanner there is no sight more pleasing than that of his 
covered as far as eyes can see by luxuriant and stoutstalked 
. Lord Srinivasa is the Farmer here. Crops cannot grow at 
tuch less can they grow in abundance, unless there is plentiful 
,t the proper periods in the course of the cultivation operations. 
Daya is the rain that pours in plenty (pravaaba) and at proper 
(samayopanataihi). Ordinary rain helps crops to grow. The 
>f Daya is productive of Saranaagataas or Prapannaas those 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

who surrender themselves up to the Lord completely. The pu 
of creation bringing into being this earth with embodied soi 
it is to give those souls a chance to redeem themselves. \ 
realising their lack of gnana and shakthi and their conse* 
unfitness to pursue the prescribed path of Karmayoga, Gnana] 
and Bhakthiyoga, they or at least many of them resort to pr< 
or Saranagati as a direct means for attaining moksha, ther 
plentiful crop of prapannas and the Lord's heart rejoices ai 
sight. The process of Prapatti, which is described in g 
detail in the later slokas of this Stotra and postulated with a 
scientific accuracy as a potent means for the attainment of Mo 
depends on the flow of Daya or mercy from the Lord. And 
is pointed out in this sloka that Daya-pravaaha is really respoi 
for this bumper crop of prapannaas. 

Not only should rain be plentiful but it must be seasona 
timely. A heavy downpour calculated to wash away the seed 
seedlings or to immerse the ripe crops in a deluge and prevent 
from being harvested can hardly be called helpful rain. So 
has to be samayopanata, making itself available at the proper 1 
That, Daya is here pointed out to be, rendering timely help 

Samaya also means a system or school of thought, a Dai 
Desika has- very deftly employed the term here to suggest Sri I 
nava Samaya or to refer to it by another name, Ramanuja 
sana. For it is only in this system Daya is relied on as the 
refuge of helpless beings, and Saranagati is laid down as a p 
force for securing salvation straight. In no other system of th< 
is prapatti regarded as Saakshan-mokshopaaya (direct and immc 
means of salvation). One can certainly look up to Sri Desika 
was the first to propound this system of prapatti as awell-devei 
and scientifically verified means for moksha, to show to u 
several details of this system which was adopted by the A 
and demonstrated to the world through his own anushlaa) 
observance by that greatest Acbarya of all times, Ramanuja. 
sloka should therefore be understood as conveying to us the su 
tion that Dayaapravaaha (or the flow of Daya) is productive c 
greatest good only in this Samaya of Vaishnavism. 

There is a peculiar aptness in the reference to the Lord's a 
as Vrisha-Saila here. A cultivator who has a large extent of 
can have a look at the whole of it only by standing on a raised ] 



26 DAYAA SATAKAM 

Tirumala, being a hill, serves the purpose of being a good static 
from which to view the entire world below. A watchman ov 
fields has to stand on a raised platform to see that the growii 
crops are not grazed by straying cattle. 

Reading the 20th and 21st slokas together a very beautif 
sentiment can be seen to be very naively dealt with by this peerle 
poet-philosopher. It was said in the 20th sloka that one wh 
gets blessed by the kataaksha of Sreenivasa at the time of one 
birth enjoys the benefits of a bumper harvest without toiling for i 
By referring to the selfsame Lord Srinivasa as a Krisheevala (farme 
or cultivator) in this sloka, Desika shows that the needed cultivs 
tion is done by the Lord. There can be no crop without cultivatioi 
In ths pursuit of all other upayas (or means) for moksha, the aspirar 
is the cultivator or toiler. In prapatti, the Lord is the chief cult; 
vator. That is why He is known as Siddhopaaya. Prapatti don 
by a mumukshu (aspirant) is only a sadhyopaaya. Human effoi 
and divine grace are respectively the Sadhyopaaya and Siddhopaayc 
Here is a dwandhva (a duality) which has always to go togethe 
to yield good results. Divine grace is always there, but for us t< 
obtain its benefits we have to deserve them by doing some thing 
however small. It may be a mere vyaaja or pretext it cannot b 
more but if it is not theie, the mercy of the Lord does not stay 
even like rain which runs away from a raised and hard surface. / 
clever man always digs a tank and keeps it ready so that when thi 
rain comes, the water will stay in it and be available for his needs 
His digging the tank does not create rain; but it helps to retail 
the rain when it comes. This srfsHW^ (inseparableness) betweei 
Siddhopaya and Sadhyopaaya is one of the very fine points expati 
ated upon by Desika in several places in his numerous works. Al 
the nice points of Desika' s system find beautiful poetical expressior 
in the Daya Sataka. 



^r: II to) 

Kalasodadhi samp ado bhavatyaha Karunel sanmati mantha- 

samskrutaayaha \ [chalendoho. (22) 

Amrutaamsam avaimi divya deham mrutasanjeevanam Anjanaa- 

O! Mercy Divine! methinks the divine body of that bright Moon 
of Anjanaadri, a body that has the capacity to revive and bring to 
life those that are dead, is only the AMRUTA (nectar) obtained 



BAYAA SATAKAM 27 

by churning you, who are like a veritable milk-ocean, with good 
intellect as the churning rod. 

The Divya-mangala Vigrahas or Bhagavad-roopas or forms, 
with special reference to the Archa-moorti or Vigraha (image) of 
Lord Srinivasa is here spoken of as the quintessence of Daya. This 
Vigraha is fpr (auspicious) and also gw (beautiful) and so is known 
as Divyamangala Vigraha, Subhaasraya, Subhasubhagatanu, and so on. 

As one of the chief propounders of the Alwar-cult, Desika 
is here seen postulating the excellence and supremacy of Bhagavad- 
vigraha. In certain philosophies God has no name and no form. 
He has no attributes either; He merely is. Ramanuja has refuted 
those philosophies and ably demonstrated that the Lord does 
possess names and forms which He takes on for the delectation 
of His devotees. No one need be afraid that, thereby He is getting 
finitised. His infinity and transcendence are in no way affected by 
His assuming names and forms. 

That there are five such forms or roopas, which the Lord takes 
on, is spoken of in the Agamaas (Paancharatra or Bhagavat-Sastra 
chiefly) and in the Alwars' outpourings. They are Para, Vyuha, 
Haarda, Vibhava and Archa. Para-roopa is the figure with which 
the Lord shines in Paramapada or Vaikunta for the eternal enjoy- 
ment of the Celestials, who are Nityas or Muktas. Vyuha roopa 
is the fourfold form Vasudeva, Sankarshana, Pradyumna', and 
Aniruddha assumed by the Lord for the benefit of dyaana by 
yogis. The roopa of Ksheerctbdhinaatha, reclining on Adisesha in 
the middle of the milk-ocean, and the twelve forms .of Kesava, 
Narayana, Madhava, Govinda, Vishnu, Madhusoodana, Trivikrarna, 
Vaamana, Sreedhara, Hrisheekesa, Padmanaabha and Daamodara 
(Dwadasa Namaas) are also regarded as being in this category. 
The Haarda roopa also known as Antaryaami roopa, is the infinitely 
small form with which the Lord dwells in the heart of every chetana, 
sentient being. The forms of the Avataraas, strictly so called, like 
Rama and Krishna, are the Vibhava roopas. Lastly comes the 
Archaa-roopa, the form of idols or images of which the Saalagrama 
and ihe images in temples are the most prominent. These are all 
referred to later in this very stotra by Desika. 

A great amount of ignorance and confusion prevails about 
the nature and function of the Archaavatara. We are treated by 
several modern philosophers to theories like images .being mere 
r+BK-n r, et/tnoe f/-\ Tiirfhor /Hvunnrin nr rinntftmnlation and the ulti- 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

e realisation of the formless. Those who deny the validit 
,11 forms have necessarily to deny the validity and potency c 
ihaas at least in the ultimate, though they also worship i 
iples in a condescending way as a concession to the " igaoran 
who believe that the image is the God." The Alwars and ih 
aryas, like Ramanuja, Paraasara Bhatta and Desika, hav 
ed no pains to refute such unlearned and ill-informed critic 
their ways of thinking. This sloka is calculated to establisi 
images of the Lord are as valid, true and helpful as Daya, th 
i's Mercy, itself. Though the word ' Divya Deham ' meaning 
ne body will take in all the five forms enumerated above, th 
ence to the Divya deha of Anjanaachala-Indu (Moon of Tim 
i) shows that Desika is specially thinking of tbeArcha Vigrahaa; 
le Lord which by way of upalakshana will indicate the othe; 
forms also. We shall have occasion to refer to this topi< 
i in commenting on several later slokas and so shall not furthej 
)rate on the same here. 

The Puramic churning of Ksheerabdi (ocean of milk) by insert- 
he Manihara mountain as the churning rod is in the poet's 
- That process is adapted here to suit the present point. In 
ipameya, Daya is herself the milk ocean. Being ever sweet 
delectable she does possess all the fine qualities of the milk 
i. She is as such ocean churned by Sm-mathi or the intellect 
tesire) of those who answer to the Upanishadic definition of 
: ara*wft%5 %r SRfi^cn> &5^% I) The rather general term 
nathi, without mentioning who that sat is, has been delibe- 
r adopted by Desika to take in and suit the several forms of 
i such as Swayam Vyaktha, Saiddha, Daiva, Maanusha etc., 
sloka 9 above). The idea is that in Swayamvyakta the Sat 
> Lord Himself as it is His will or SankaJpa alone that is res- 
ble for that aavirbhava or appearance. Similarly the particular 
ta, Deva or human being respectively at whose invitation the 
takes a shape or form must be the Sat in each of the cases of 
ha, Daiva and Maanusha respectively. Poigai Alwar's 
*>*&& ermi+iyjpiti ^/^/J) ff ($6m is the authority for 
:a here. The desire of the devotee is the immediate cause, 
is Daya that is the fundamental cause for all Vigrahaas. 
Tie use of the word Indu or moon to describe the Lord here 



DAYAA SATAKAM 29 

In the Puranic churning several objects good, bad and 
indifferent were brought to the surface. There came out poison 
as well as nectar and also the moon, elephants, horses, trees, 
etc. Lakshmi also came out as a result of that churning. All the 
other objects were distributed to others but the Lord took Lakshmi 
for Himself. Here the Lord's Div>amangala Vigraha is referred 
to as ' amrutaamsam ' the quintessence of amruta. The Vigraha 
is the Lakshmi in this churning. 

Avaimi I understand; 1 realise. This predicate has been 
obviously employed here to show to us Desika's conviction that 
the Lord's image-forms are the quintessence of Daya. It is only 
when Desika wants that a rare and important Siddhanta or con- 
clusion he has come to should be properly understood and followed 
by us he employs this word. Vedanta Desika's verdict on any 
topic has to be accepted by^all right-thinking men. 



Jaladheriva Seetataa Day el Twam Vrishasailaadhipathes-swa- 

bhaavabhootaa i 

Pralayaarabhateenateem tadeekshaam Prasabham Graahayasi 

prasaththilaasyam. u (23) 

Dayadevi! You who are of the essence of Lord Srinivasa's nature, 
even as coolness is the essential quality of the Sea, force His fearM 
and destructive looks (responsible for pralaya) into sweet and pleasant 
looks responsible for creation and protection, and thereby convert 
their frightful devil-dance into a sweetpaced and lovely Laasya 
(dance). 

" It (Para Brahman) looked and said to Itself * I shall become 
the many Y* so sa Y s ^ e Upanishad. The Lord's looks as indi- 
cating His Sankalpa or will are there said to be the immediate 
cause of creation or projection of the world. Another and different 
natured eekshana or look must have been responsible for Pralaya 
or destruction. The looks that caused destruction are likened in 
this sloka to a dancer indulging in Aarabhati, a violent form of 
dance (aghora-tandava). At the time of Creation those very looks 
indulge in laasya & soft and sweet dance. (These terms are again 
taken from Bharatasastra vide sloka 16 above. Aarabhati nor- 
mally is used for the ' taandava ' of a male; laasya is the dancing 



28 DAYAA SATAKAM 

mate realisation of the formless. Those who deny the vali 
of all forms have necessarily to deny the validity and potency 
vigrahaas at least in the ultimate, though they also worship 
Temples in a condescending way as a concession to the " igaoi 
men who believe that the image is the Gcd," The Alwars and 
Acharyas, like Ramanuja, Paraasara Bhatta and Desika, h 
spared no pains to refute such unlearned and ill-informed cri 
and their ways of thinking. This sloka is calculated to estab 
that images of the Lord are as valid, true and helpful as Daya, 
Lord's Mercy, itself. Though the word ' Divya Deham ' mean 
Divine body will take in all the five forms enumerated above, 
reference to the Divya deha of Anjanaachala-Indu (Moon of Ti 
mala) shows that Desika is specially thinking of theArcha Vigrah 
of the Lord which by way of upalakshana will indicate the ot 
four forms also. We shall have occasion to refer to this to 
again in commenting on several later slokas and so shall not furti 
elaborate on the same here. 

The Puraaic churning of Ksheerabdi (ocean of milk) by inse 
ing the Manthara mountain as the churning rod is in the poi 
naiad. That process is adapted here to suit the present point. 
the upameya, Daya is herself the milk ocean. Being ever sw< 
aad delectable she does possess all the fine qualities of the m 
ocean. She is as such ocean churned by San-mathi or the intell< 
(0r desire) of those who answer to the Upanishadic definition 
a Sat: 3T%ff||pr=%<| %^r 3RT^cn> %^% U The rather general tei 
San-mathi, without mentioning who that sat is, has been delil 
ratdy adopted by Desika to take in and suit the several forms 
archa such as Swayam Vyaktha, Saiddha, Daiva, Maanusha et 
(vide sloka 9 above). The idea is that in Swayamvyakta the S 
is the Lord Himself as it is His will or Sankalpa alone that is n 
ponsible for that aavirbhava or appearance. Similarly the particul 
Siddha, Deva or human being respectively at whose invitation t 
Lord takes a shape or form must be the Sat in each of the cases 
Saiddha, Daiva and Maanusha respectively. Poigai Alwai 
pi&yfy&tsp&i QT/mj^jLr jy^/^^/o) ^5/rSfiw is the authority f 
Desika here. The desire of the devotee is the immediate caus 
but it is Daya that is the fundamental cause for all Vigrahaas. 



is verv 



The use of the word Indu or moon to describe the Lord he 



. the Puramc churning several objects good, bad aru 
rent were brought to the surface. There came out poisoi 
1 as nectar and also the moon, elephants, horses, trees 
_,akshmi also came out as a result of that churning. All th 
objects were distributed to others but the Lord took Lakshm 
imself. Here the Lord's Div>amangala Vigraha is referre 
4 amrutaamsam ' the quintessence of amruta. The Vigrah 
Lakshmi in this churning. 

vaimi 1 understand; 1 realise. This predicate has bee 
asly employed here to show to us Desika's conviction th* 
Drd's image-forms are the quintessence of Daya. It is onJ 
Desika wants that a rare and important Siddhanta or cor 
ti he has come to should be properly understood and followe 
he employs this word. Vedanta Desika's verdict on an 
has to be accepted bpall right-thinking men. 



ROT JUfflfa srafa35HPm II (\\ 



aladheriva Seetataa Dave I Twam Vrishasailaadhipathes-sw 

bhaavabhootaa i 

^ralayaarabhateenateem tadeekshaam Prasabham Graahaya 

prasaththUaasyam. (2 

)ayadevi! You who are of the essence of Lord Srinivasa's natui 

as coolness is the essential quality of the Sea, force His fear! 

estructive looks (responsible for pralaya) into sweet and pleasa 
responsible for creation and protection, and thereby convt 
frightful devil-dance into a sweetpaced and lovely Laas 

e). 

* It (Para Brahman) looked and said to Itself ' I shall becor 
lany '," so says the Upanishad. The Lord's looks as in< 
g His Sankalpa or will are there said to be the iramedk 
} of creation or projection of the world. Another and differc 
ed eekshana or look must have been responsible for Praia 
jstruction. Tire looks that caused destruction are likened 
sloka to a dancer indulging in Aarabhati, a violent form 
e (aghora-tandava). At the time of Creation those very loc 
.ge in laasya a soft and sweet dance. (These terms are agi 
i from Bharatasastra vide sloka 16 above. Aarabhati n< 
y is ussd for the * taandava ' of a male; laasya is the danci 



30 DAYAA SATAKAM 

of a female. In the Yadhavabhyudaya (IV. 120) Sri Krishm 
dance on the hood of the serpent Kahya is referred to as aarabhat 
Daya is said to be responsible for changing the nature and characl 
of the Lord's looks from the violent and frightful form into t 
soft and pleasing form. She is said to effect the conversion 
force (prasabham). 

She is able to effect this change because by na f ure the Lord 
merciful, just as by naiure the sea is cool. Though the sea may 
rough and hot at times owing to currents and tides, its essent 
nature is coolness. So too mercifulness is the essential nature 
the Lord, and His ferocity and fury which were responsible i 
pralaya or destruction were really induced by external causes su 
as man's, ingratitude and insubordination. When Daya D< 
suggests to Him to create once again (see sloka 17 above) He v< 
easily agrees to do so because His inherent nature is mercy. 

Prasaththi means pras r aada or anugraha. There is a paatantz 
(different reading) for this word as prasakti sRuftfi which has be 
taken to mean the process of creation. 

Though some force was necessary on the part of Daya 
change the Lord's inclination from pralaya to srishti, she succee 
not because of this force for no one can force the mighty Lc 
to do anything against His nature, wish, or desire but becai 
inherently the Lord is merciful and the moment the suggesti 
emanates from Daya Devi the Lord eagerly accepts the same a 
brings about creation and protects the world so created. ' In sic 
16 above pralaya was said to be an act of Daya. That is the tn 
about it. But in a general way to the ordinary man pralaya stai 
ing for destruction is fearful, while creation is pleasant and agr 
able. This sloka portrays this common viewpoint very artistica] 



Pranata pratikoolamoola ghaatee Prathigha (h) Kopi 
, . Vrishaachaleswara 



DAYAA SATAKAM 31 

Karuna! The anger of that peerless Lord of Vrishaachala attains 
the state of being your servant (as it gets employed by you) in the 
cause of rooting out and destroying the obstacles and barriers (in 
the way of the progress) of those who bow (by prostrating) before the 
Lord even like removing grass (weeding) which grass is an obstacle 
to the adequate growth of paddy crop. 

It was said in the previous sloka that the angry mood of the 
Lord which was responsible for the pralaya was changed into a 
favourable and benevolent mood in order to bring about creation 
and protection. Daya Devi, it is said here, does not allow all 
that anger to go to waste, but harnesses it all in a very proper cause, 
namely the removal of obstacles in the way of Pranataas or pra- 
pannas those who have bent themselves suppliantly before the 
Lord, and totally surrendered themselves to Him. 

The fierce dance known as aarabhati and referred to in the 
pievious sloka must have been attended by a lot of anger. Daya 
cleverly changed the aarabhati into laasya. Anger got substituted 
by shanti and sweetness. Then Daya Devi thought, " why should 
all this anger be wasted?." It can be enlisted in a good cause and 
utilised to do away with the difficulties that the devotees of the 
Lord experience at the hands of the wicked. Anger is useful to 
destroy the wicked and for the wiping out of the evil doers (Dush- 
krit-vinaasa). The Lord Himself, it is said, took on anger (* Ko- 
pam Aaharayat-teevram * Valmiki) and killed His foe by the 
force of that anger (Sdosr xf8gv)39 Q&6sr<o3fl &&&>&& Qmtri^ir^ssr^ 
Q&JDJD Tiruppavai 12). The Lord Himself has no foes. 
He is alike to all H*fTg ^f*jf*5 (Samoham Sarva Bhoothe- 
shu). The enemies of His devotees are alone His enemies 
and He comes into this world often for protecting the good, 
(for that purpose) destroying the wicked, and (thereby) establishing 
Dharma. Daya Devi helps in the process in two ways, one by 
egging Him on to protect the righteous, and another by making 
Him weed out the wicked. In order to bring about the latter, 
she has necessarily to make the Lord angry against the bad sort. This 
is what is referred to in this sloka by saying that the Lord's anger 
is made to subserve Daya in the process of protecting the good. 

The analogy makes the meaning clear. In the course of culti- 
vation an important duty of th| cultivator is to remove the weeds 
that grow alongside the crops and impede their proper growth. 
5 



32 DAYAA SATAKAM 

Periodical weeding is very essential for the full and healthy grow 
of crops. So too Sadhus have to b:> protected by weeding o 
evil-doers, Daya Devi achieves this r^nilt by utilising the servie 
of the Lord's anger. So that anger is said to become Daya Dsvi 
servant 



is a word which indicates unequalled-ness and extr 
ordinary-ness (In Tamil (S^TiQ means an angry and irate pecso 
I have a feeling that the word has been deliberately used here by ti 
Poet who is a master of Tamil and Sanskrit and also Manipraval 
in a lighter vein, so that they who can see the trick may enjoy t] 
fun of referring to C#*-t9 Kopi Vrishaachaleswar's Kopa ('$& > UL 
or anger.) Pratigha means anger, wrath. . . 

The structure of the sloka is such that it talks of the Lord 
anger becoming a slave to Daya, not of Daya making that anger to 
servant. When all good qualities are her anucharaas (follower 
(sloka 11) anger also evidently desires to enlist itself in Daya 
services. The Lord was referred to as a Farmer or Cultivator : 
sloka 21 above. That idea is developed in this sloka by referrir 
to weeding operations. 



Abahishkruta nigrahaan vidantaha Kamalaakaanta gunac 

svatantratadet 

AvikaJparn anugraham duhanaam Bhavateemeva Dayel bhajan 

Santah^ (2i 

Daya Devi! The trety learned and devout people wlio very w^ 
know tliat the attributes like uncontrolled independence possessc 
by the Consort of Kamala (Lord Srinivasa) do not esch^v (but tai 
in) punishment, rely only on you wtio uniformly (without &n^ optic 
or alternative) yield (nothing but) protection. 

The idea contained in sloka 1 5 above is pursued here by pointib 
out how, while all the other attributes of the Lord are common t 
protectiveness and punishment, the attribute of Daya alone j 
productive of protection and protection alone. There the si 
well-known gunas Gnana, Bala etc., were set off against Daya an' 
demonstrated to be useless, even harmful,, to us in thp-afesenc 

~ 



being dependent on, or subservient to, anyone eise; are m* 
ticmed and it is pointed out that they are all useful to, and actua 
used, by the Lord both for protecting and for punishing. In o tl 
words they have not banished nigraha or punishment from the sec 
and ambit of their activity. But Daya is exclusively there for 
purpose, of protection. She does not know what punishment 
and is therefore uniformly and invariably productive of anugn 
or . protection alone. With her there is no scope for act 
ia one of two ways. Vikalpa is changing, option, alternat 
The absence of it is avikalpa. Anugraham-duhaanaam yield 
protection even as a cow yields milk for the sustenance of Its < 
and, the delectation of others. 



again the great sagss and seers whom 
Upanishad celebrates as * those who alone are * (vide commeni 
on sloka 22 above) are referred to and their knowledge and b< 
are shown to us for being respectfully adopted and followed. 1 
are also referred to as ' vidantaha? knowing persons. What 1 
know is that except Daya all the attributes of the Lord are cap 
of being used in punishing us as well as in protecting us: but wl 
Daya comes into play only protection can be had. In a later si 
(64) of this Stotra. Desika goes further and demonstrates 
D&ya transforms what is intended by the Lord as punishment 
a ehetana, into that chetana's protection and for his good. 



11 ( 

dayaaluhu Karunel nishkamnaa niroopane 
Ata^aMtaavakaamtaanaamduntaanaambhavatit^adevabheetihi 

Karuna Devi! The Abode of Kamala or Lakskni (Lori Srini 
becomes a dayalu or Merciful p2rsan because of you; bttt on 
scrutiny (it iairas out that) you are yourself really totally feerc 
compassion (ISLatuiia). Bscause of this only, the sins of those 
rely on yoi far h?elp are afraid only of you. 

Daya is- here described as nirdaya. Virodaalankara. 
doxicai as it may seem, contact with Daya makes the Lord a d 
vaan, merciful Being; but she herself has no dayaor pity (to^ 
certain* persons). Here; the sins of the Lord's devotees who ii 
Hto Daya axe personified and it is stated that they are really ; 
only of Daya and not of the mighty Lord. For while tta 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

gnition from the Lord, they will not get any quarter fro 
a Devi who mercilessly puts them down in protecting tho 
rely on her. 



To call a person merciless smacks of ninda fsT'^T or abus 
the point of the abuse is to demonstrate how complete ar 
Daya's protectiveness is in regard to her votaries. So this 
rm of ninda-stuti (praise through apparent abuse). 
Daya is itself an attribute or quality (guna) and hence it cannc 
have a guna or attribute. Therefore Daya makes of tl 
sort of Sri a Dayaavan by being His guna or quality. Bi 
?y cannot be an attribute of Daya itself and so Daya is bere 
iat attribute of Daya or mercy, and this is very cleverly state 
by referring to Daya having no Daya. 



langhita Saasaneshvabheekshnam Vrishasailaadhipatir 

vijrumbhithoshma 

reva Day el Kshamaanidaanaihi Bhavateem aadriyate bhava\ 

yadheenaihL (2 

Dayaa! The Lord of Vrishasaila, who manifests great heat (angei 
e perpetual transgressions (by people) of His mandates, turn 
u (and relies on you) once again with consideration and respect 
ise of the forgiveness-inducing acts that are peculiarly ascribabl 

Doshma, meaning heat or fever, and nidana, meaning patholog; 
ignosis, are terms taken from Ayurveda, the science of medicine 

\ngered by the increasing sinningness, and the transgression 
the prescribed path, on the part of created beings, the Lord 
say, gets high fever. Daya Devi then begins to doctor Him 
prescriptions, administrations and applications allay the feve 
o the Lord gratefully respects and honours her as His saviour 
This and the next sloka deal with the benefits that the Lon 
elf derives from Daya Devi. Having postulated that thi 
has a Vigraha or body the topic of this decad (vide slob 
ove) that idea is kept in mind in these two slokas (27 and 28 
ing out the great truth that Daya Devi brings -comfort anc 
not only to us but to the Lord Himself. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

The use of the term * punareva * (once again) shows that 
only when Daya is forgotten by the Lord He gets into an ai 
state at His creatures' sins, and thereby develops fever- \N 
once again He turns to Daya, He feels relieved of the fever 
restored to normal. 

Nidaanam means a primary cause, also a cause in general. 
causes that bring about forgiveness (Kshama) are of Daya D 
doing. So they are referred to here as Daya-adheena. It is < 
when forgiveness is injected into the Lord by Daya Devi who 
correctly spotted the trouble (diagnosed the disease) that the Lc 
fever is said to subside. When she effects this cure, the Loi 
immediately pleased and He fittingly remunerates (honours' 
Doctor, Daya Devi. 



N sinff ftwwwj^fsrat- i*iK II ( 

Karunel duriteshu maamakeshu Pratikaaraantara durjayeshu khin 

Kavachaayitaya tvayaiva Sarngee Vijayastaanam upaasrito 

Vrishaadrim. 

Kanina Devil That Wielder of the Sarnga (Kodanda: ] 
grieved at the fact that my sins cannot be vanquished by any < 
means, has fled to Vrishaadri and taken His stand there (as i 
invulnerable fort) as the place of His victory, covering Himself 
your helpful self as an armour. 

In the previous sloka the analogy employed related to 
and the cure from it. In this sloka the poet employs the inci< 
of warfare to bring out the idea he seeks to convey. , The 
committed by me, the poet says, are like so many darts or at 
iung at His sweet and soft form. He cannot ward off those ai 
by any of the usual means employed in warfare calculated to de 
them and prevent them from doing harm and inflicting wo 
The sins cannot be destroyed except by expiation (prayasc 
or enjoyment of fruits (anubhava) vide sloka 34 post. I do not 
feel repentant; how am I going to take to expiation? If I a 
get the punishment I deserve for those sins, even eternity w 
inadequate to see me punished for all my sins. They are so 
and so numerous. So the Lord is very much pained and 
(Khinnaha). 



DAYAA'SATAKAM 

only; chance of victory that . suggests itself to Hiim is t 
a place where He will mot have to. see my sins and sinfi 
ties./ That place is TiruinalaL By its'sacredness it des 
frays 'the sins of even such as me because I paid obeisance to ii 
Even on the heights of His victory-seat (Vijayastana) He encase 
Himself in an armour of Daya, just like a warrior donning th 
armour for protection from hostile attacks. Daya is thus th 
Kavacha or armour which the Lord puts on. , 

'* ' " The description of the Lord as Sarngee (sort 7) in this slofc 
& worthy of being enjoyed ,by all rasikas. This name of the Lore 
occurs^ in only one other sloka in this stotra the 106th when 
He is referred to as Saarngadhanva. We shall enjoy Jts beaut^ 
and appropriateness there. 

Here Desika has -deliberately employed the term* Saarngee (the 
of that pwerfiit bow known as Saamga: ^ir^m^Oi^GST 
J)&&).TG&L-.irsyr as Periyalwar has put it) to show that 
tfte Lord\ failure to achieve victory, by mfcans other thairwFrat 
involves the employment of Daya, is not due to His -being a 
n&ak or powerless person bereft of the essential qualities of a 
warrior. He is in fact a Sarva-Shakta, a Mahaveera, and the 
moat powerful of weapons, the Kodanda, is in His hands. He can 

fat down, subdue and vanquish any one. As Valmjki has put it, 
Ha makes up His mind to kill a person in war, there is no one 
strong enough to protect such a person Traatum-na-Shaktaaha- 
yudhi-Ramavadhyam =T 5 ^ ?rar qfnr TW^' That way of achieving 
wtory kawewer does mcxtt appeal to the Lord. His great desire is to 
firiiffld ^aaiquisk the sin* im the sinner and not t kil and end .ttee 
himsdf., Has He not as Sri Rama given to us the 
of a Veera as Pampam Aaryem yo hantisaha 
aft', ff^ct & 9^2 He is the true veenra who quells sin 
by rihte0Bsae^. With His Saarnga He, can only mow dsvm 
ratilJioBS as He did in the Ramayama. That however. He does not 
leciiwi as victory. He with the Saaarnga in His hands is thus, helpless 
aigaiitst iy sins,, sinee the? Saamga cam as&y kill me but not my sins. 
Daya has therefore to come ,to His rescue as a protector - against 
aims^ Aixd, therefore with Daya as His armour He attains the seat 
rf victory TisEwmalai^ which, as explained in; the commentary .j 
tfe eiy first sldca of this Stolra, is, itself capable < 
of our Sins. 



incidentally tms g-w (^urmatva) or auspKioitsness 0; 
Ps Tiruineni ($?$(]> t/eyrl) or glorious body is shown , 
result" of its intimate contact with Daya. as intimate as 
n armour. ; -, -* 



'itistitati dushkrtaam pradhaane mltadoshaan ttaraan 

'aadhaganairapoornakukshihi Kamalaakaanta Dayel k& 

bhctvitrep 

Whea I am here, the chief among evildoers, OJ Daya! yo 
arch of others who have but limited sins to their credit. By .9 
protecting those others you will not at all feel satisfied Or i 
vill feel like one whose stomach does not get its fill of feed. 

i! how are you going to thrive (live)? 

. , , .< * * j 

The tho^u^it of tiis own huge load of^sins which fpujpuLme 
e previous sloka persists in this sloka' too. There it was s 
'itheHUsffd Himself feif deeply pained aiii';hwi: a' tliose 
t pains the Lord is pleasing to Daya, it is stated here. 
Daya react to sins in diametrically opposite ways. God w 
as in Human beings and feels hurt and wounded. Daya g 
stos and takes a pleasure and pride in excusing and : fotg 
i. This feature of Daya Devi is pictured here by refe 
QS as Daya's food by which her hunger gets appeased; ] 
;*ors .to protect sinners. Their sins therefore jpst 
>ap.; The larger thfc quaatity ske consumes Hie 
he degree of appease^Tient. i 

ta the intoisity of his devotional fervaur calls hi 
nd the leader amomig sinners. This m a-*yery^ 
re : With all grieajt acharyas. .Nammalwar refers to"iumsc 
}Qnjm mfa&ir<sQsBr (gtusyr (siiiner with a 
)US ,-siBts) eB$H>irp $*48SsBrvr & &&$ssr 

t ^a lot of mormons sins Jiave I comimiitted) and m 
EtKtdax sings about himself as amfe: sspr: Amar^ad 
idraha and &o on showering oa himself tea suc 
>wamg in: their, wake Desika also xery often .refers 



BAYAA SATAIUiM 

only chance of victory that, suggests itself to Him is tc 
ittbreat.to a place where He will not have to. see my sins and sin&ri 
japoptasitiesu"' That place is TiruttialaL By itsrsacredness it des- 
tffojrs .the sins of even such as me because I paid obeisanpp. to .its 
Even on the heights of His victory-seat (Vijayastana) He -.encases 
Himself in an armour of Daya, just like a warrior donning the 
armour for protection from hostile attacks. Daya is thus.. the 
Kavacha of armour which the Lord puts on. 

'~J' The description of the Lord as Sarngee (STIff) in this slpka 
& worthy of being enjoyed by all rasikas. This name of the Lord 
occurs in only one other sloka in this stotra the 106th where 

x '*'. ' . ( " " A ' * ' 

He is referred to as Saarngadhanva. We shall enjoy its 'Ibeautjy: 
and appropriateness there. 

Here Desika has 'deliberately employed the 4erm-Saarngee (the 
of that pcwerfofr bpw known as Saaarmga: ^^m^OLf^r 
Qjvsvr&wL^rr&fr as Periyalwar has put it) to show that 
tfee Lonfs failure to achieve victory, by means other than : wfect 
involves the employment of Daya, is not due to His -beiftg? a 
ineak or powerless person bereft of the essential qualities of a 
warrior. He is in fact a Sarva-Shakta, a Mahaveera, and the 
most powerful of weapons, the Kodanda, is in His hands. . He can 
put down, subdue and vanquish any one. As Valmjki has put it, 
ft Ha makes up His mind to kill a person in war, there is no one 
strong enough to protect such a person Traatum-na-Shaktaaha- 
yudhi-Ramavadhyam ^ 5 ?f STTRT Vv *W*ti That way of achieving 
iwtory koiwewer ; i does mot appeal to the Lord. His gie^t d^ire is to 

asd ^aaqubh the sm in the sinner and not t kill and end -the 
amner Mmsdf., Has He mot as Sri Raima given to us the 'correct 
<4@fiiidyo!ii c a, Veso^a as Paatipam AwryeM y&' hantimh^ HOTrafar 
*ti %$^ ^', PcC It- elf: He is the true.veeia who "queMs.sim 
by ri^teoisaess. Wiith His Saarnga He, can only mow downs, 
niilitoiis as He dM in the Ramayaaa. That however He does* not 
s@crJwa as victory. He with the Saarnga in His hands is thm helpless 
my sins* si@ the Saamga cam only kill me but not my sins. 

. has. therefore t come , to His rescue .as a inratectaor- againsl: 
And therefore with Daya as His armour He attains the seat 
^rf mctary; Tkimalai^ which,, as explained in: the commentary JQ*I 
tte ^ei^ first slDka of this Slroilra, is, itself capable of cleansing: JD$ 
of our Sins. 



SATAKAM ^ 

-..Incidentally this g*ic3 (Subhatva) or auspicioiisness of tiie 
Lord's Tirumeni ($^C?t/W?) or glorious body is shown ,to-be 
thie result' of its intimate contact with Daya, as intimate as 

of an armour. "-" ? 



Mqyltfstitati dushkrtaam pradhaane mitadoshaan itaraan 
Aparaadhaganairapoornakukshihi Kamalaakaanta Daye ! katham 



When; I am here, the chief among seviWoecs^ O! D^yal yoft;Mfe 
in search of others who have but limited sins to their credit. By saving 
and protecting those others you will not at all feel satisfied or happy 
bujt will feel like one whose stomach does not get its fill of feed. Poor 
Daya! how are you going to thrive (live)? 



The thought of bis own huge load of ^ins which ,found,niention 
in the previous sloka persists in this' sfoka 1 too. There it was stated 
fcbat 'jtheHLjdHMl Himself felt deeply pained anil ;fwt at tliose sins. 
What pains the Lord is pleasing to Daya, it is stated here. Gpd 
and Daya react to sins in diametrically opposite ways. God winces 
at "sins in Human beings and feels hurt and wounded. Daya gloats 
over sin:s and tikes a pleasure and pride in excusing and'fofgivrag 
them. This Feature of Daya Devi is pictured here by referring 
to jsio5 as Daya's food by which her Mrnger gets appeased. Daya 
fcaiikcs .to protect sinners. Their sim$ therefore et c<sujacl 
fey Daf:a; The lar@ar tial> quanolity ste consumes ihe grreater wM 
be the degree of appeasement. i : ') 

TjhejpoeJ: im the intensity of his devotional fervour .calls hiinself 
am arda-siiwcr and the leader amomig sinners, This is a ^firyiutoLkl 
feature -With- aE great acharyas. .Nammalwar refers to kim^tf as 
andv $&ir@<s9$ssr ($tu$sr (siiiner with a "yast 'load *4fflf 



(wtet *a lot of mormons sins have I .committed) and so 
sings about himself as w^fe-. g^: 
and $o on showering on himself, tea '.such 
piithar.waks Desika also yery often rdfers 
e greatest and taltesit among sinmers. In thatnod.4ie 

plaintively tells Daya Devi, " please turn your attention - 



38 DAYAA SATAKAJM 

I promise you good and full food for you in the shape of sins 
You are out to save sinners. By saving persons who havi 
committed small sins you will not do justice to yourself am 
you will not feel satisfied. So I tell you, please turn toward: 
me and do not waste your time searching for others whose sini 
will be nothing before my sins. If after such search you aligh 
.upon some of them and save them, you surely are not going to b< 
satisfied. You will surely feel then like a hungry giant being fee 
on" half a loaf of bread. And when I am here in the nature of 2 
full and rich repast why turn your eyes on insufficient rationed 
food? I feel very much concerned to think of your semi-starvation, 
How are you going to live, to thrive, unless you take me on 
hand, protect me and feel happy that it has been given to you 
to achieve the redemption and protection of the greatest of 
sinners." ? 

The words used suggest. that the poet tates pity and com- 
passion on Daya Devi who is herself a storehouse of mercy. 



^ ii (* ) 

Ahamasmi aparaadha (aparaadhi) chakravarti Karunel tvamcha gune- 

shu saarvabhaumee 

Vidusheestitimeedrseem swayam maam Vrishasailenvara Paadaasat 

Kuru tvam. (30) 

I am the emperor of crimes (or I am an emperor among criminals). 
YOII are an Empress among good qualities (attributes). Knowing this 
state of affairs it is up to you to tie me up to the feet of Vrishasafleswara 
on your own initiative. 

The poet who called himself "dushkrtam-pradhaanaha:" or 

dud ^among wrong-doers" in sloka 29 refers to himself here as an 

emperor of crimes (or, in the paata 'aparaadtdchakravarti' as " the 

emperor among criminals." He refers to Daya Devi as an Emprlss 



i,i* anmp 

if she enslaves an emperor and imprisons him. Therefore Dava 



aparaaana-cnaKravartee may also be split i 
ra-vartee, meaning thereby one who lives move; 
i aparaadha, i.e., fault, crime, sin and so on. 
vortex of crime. Round abowt me everywhere 

there is nought but aparaadha. 1 am the cem 
>ple build forts and ramparts for their safety an< 
I am living in such a state in the midst of si 
10 are an Empress backed up by strength, valou 
,as (sloka 11) to besiege me, blast the rampart i 
t and to come in and capture m and easlav* 
nplish this task. You know fall wdi this st 
cries out for redress. 

' swayam ' can be taken along with * vidu 
which case tvam coming at the end of the slok 
for the predicate PaadamM kum; d>r twan m 
th vidhushee and the sloka read as * swayam paad 
by yourself and without any mve from ms d 

If you expect me to move ia the matter, I ma; 

of your own accord. 

decad thus winds up with a prayer to Daya to 
of the Lord. The vigraha of the Lord is so bea 
that the momeat one learns about it oae hast 

1 an enjoyment is to be obtained only by falli 
t can be dome only if Daya Devi takes pity om u 
so. 

ly it may be noted that in the first slolca of this i 
s used. Then regularly Kumna and Daya have 
ilternate slofcas. 



38 DAYAA SATAKAM 

I promise you good and full food for you in the shape of sin! 
You are out to save sinners. By saving persons who hav 
committed small sins you will not do justice to yourself an 
you will not feel satisfied. So T tell you, please turn toward 
me and do not waste your time searching for others whose sin 
will be nothing before my sins. If after such search you aligh 
itipon some of them and save them, you surely are not going to b 
satisfied. You will surely feel then like a hungry giant being fe< 
on" half a loaf of bread. And when I am here in the nature of J 
full and rich repast why turn your eyes on insufficient ratione< 
food? I feel very much concerned to think of your semi-starvation 
How are you going to live, to thrive, unless you take rne 01 
hand, protect me and feel happy that it has been given to yoi 
to achieve the redemption and protection of the greatest 01 
sinners."? 

The words used suggest .that the pbet takes pity and com- 
passion on Daya Devi who is herself a storehouse of mercy. 

?? ^ 3013 



Ahamasmi aparaadha (aparaadhi) chakravarti Karunel tvamcha gune- 

shu saarvabhaumee 

Vidusheestitimeedrseem swayam maam Vrishasaileswam Paadaasat 

Kuru tvam. (30) 

I am the emperor of crimes (or I am an emperor among criminals). 
You are an Empress among good qualities (attributes). Knowing this 
state of affairs it is up to you to tie me up to the feet of Vrishasaileswara 
on your own initiative. 

The poet who called himself " dushkrtam-pradhaanaha-" or 
" chief among wrong-doers" in sloka 29 refers to himself here as an 
emperor of crimes (or, in the paata 'aparaadhichakravarti' as, "the 
emperor among criminals." He refers to Daya Devi asan Empress 
of guuaas or good attributes. The glory of an Empress will go up 
if she enslaves an emperor and imprisons him. Therefore Daya 
Devi is requested in and by this sloka to capture Desika as a prisoner 
-of-war and to imprison him at the feet of the Lord of Vrishasaila 

(sloka n) > < 



OAYAA SATAKAM 39 

The term aparaadha-chakravartee may also be split up as 
aparadha-chakra-vartee, meaning thereby one who lives moves and 
has his being in aparaadha, i.e., fault, crime, sin and so on. I am 
literally in the vortex f crime. Roumd about me everywhere, and 
ever and anon, there is nought but aparaadha. 1 am the centre of 
sin. Some people build forts -and ramparts for their safety and live 
within them. I am living in such a state in the midst of sin. I 
beseech you who are an Empress backed up by strength, valour and 
other anucharaas (sloka 1 1) to besiege me, blast the rampart walls, 
shatter my fort and to come in and cafrtur me and easlave me. 
You can accomplish this task. You know full welt this state of 
affairs which cries out for redress. 

The word * swayam ' can be taken along with * vidushee * 
(you know) in which case tvam coming at the end of the sloka will 
be the subject for the predicate Paadamat kurm; r tmffn may be 
taken along with vidhushee aiad the sloka read as * swayam paadasaat 
kuru ' Please by yourself and without any move from me easlave 
me at His feet. If you expect me to move in the matter^ I may mot. 
So please do so of your own accord. 

The third decad thus winds up with a prayer to Daya to take 
us to the Feet of the Lord. The vigraha of the Lord is s beautiful 
aad attractive that the moment one learns about it t>me hastens to 
enjoy it. Such an enjoyment is to be obtained only by falling at 
His feet. That can be done only if Daya Devi takes pity om us and 
makes us do so. 

Incidentally it may be noted that in the first sloka of this dtcad 
Anukampa was used. Then regularly Kanma and Daya have been 
employed in alternate -slokas. 



TO 



DAYAA SATAKAM 



FOURTH DECAD 



THE third Decad started with a sloka in which the wore 
* Maalinee* finds a place. The fourth decad employs th< 
Malinee metre. It is a metre with fifteen aksharaas in a paada 
Its lilting rhythm is a very pleasing feature of this metre. 

As the stotra proceeds, the incorporation in it of the thoughts 
and ideas of the Dramidopanishad becomes more and more appa- 
rent The topic of the fourth * Paththu ' (u&&) of Tiruvoimozhj 
is the Sarva-bhogyaatisaayitvam of the Lord. That is, His enjoy- 
ableness and the delectation He affords to His devotees, excel 
every other enjoyment known to man: against them the other 
enjoyments pale into nothingness. In the second decad the ati- 
bhogyabhava or high degree of enjoyability was enjoyed. After 
knowing about His beautiful Roopa in the 3rd paththu, Nammalwar 
postulates that no other enjoyment can come anywhere near the 
enjoyable quality of the Lord and thereby demonstrates how He 
excels (arfasR) all other joys. This fourth decad of Daya Sataka 
deals with this trait of the Lord very pointedly as we shall see. 

While singing the very first sloka of this decad it is obvious 
that the poet is thinking of the gist of the first verse of Nammalwar's 
fourth Paththu " &ir)tjDQu/D&@iBJ8#&i ^.ujiBQ^ " * Betake 
yourselves betimes to thinking of Him and thereby save yourselves/ 
The idea of this 31st sloka is, while there is strength in the body 
and while the karanaas are properly functioning let me go up the 
Tirumalai Hill and take my residence there to obtain the grace 
of the Gracious Lord of that Hill. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 41 



rl snnfl: II 

Asithila Karanesmin Akashta-shwasa vrittau 

Vapushigamana yogye vaasam aasadayeyam i 
Vrishagiri-katakeshu vyanjayatsu prateetaihi 

Madhumathana Day el tvaam varidhaara viseshaihiu *(31) 

O! Daya of the slayer of (the asura) Madhu! while these karanaas 
of mine are unenfeebled, while the hreathing function (in my body) 
is uninjured and unhurt, and while my body is still fit to freely go about. 
I desire to live (have my residence) on the sides (slopes) of Vrishagiri 
(Tirumala Hill), the famous waterfalls of which reveal and demonstrate 
(to us) your own flow. 

Like all hills, the Tirumala Hill is also famous for its falls, 
such as Akasha-ganga, Paapa-vinaasa, and so on. The majestic 
flow of water in those falls remind Desika of the flow of Daya, 
how from the heights of the mighty and majestic Lord, Daya flows 
down and down, lower and lower, till she bathes the lowliest of 
the low in her beneficient waters. He therefore refers to the falls 
as demonstrating and visibly illustrating to us the pravaaha or 
flow of Daya. Vaari is water, and dhaara is a downward current, 
a descending stream. 

Life on the Tirumalai Hill is prayed for for the reason that 
by seeing the water falls which are there in plenty one will ever 
and anon be reminded and kept in mind of Daya. 

In the days of the Alwars and of Desika there were no ghat 
roads and no vehicles to take people up the Hill. Ascent of the 
Hill was a very difficult and laborious process. It ccnild not tie 
accomplished unless one had a sound, strong and sturdy body. 
The powers of sight, hearing etc. (Indhriyas) should be keen and 
unimpaired. The lungs must be functioning properly so that the 
difficult ascent involving a great strain on breathing may not have 
any adverse effect on the breathing process. The body itself should 
be capable of free and easy movement. The wise man therefore 
will like to accomplish the climbing of the Tirumala Hill while 
his faculties are unimpaired and intact, and will not postpone 



DAYAA SATAKAM 43 

What Daya Devi achieves with a view to protect us is a matter 
for wonder and admiration for Sridevi and Bhoodevi. Protection 
of persons like us who are ignorant of our own yoga and kshema 
cannot be an easy task. If at heart we know what is good for 
ourselves, what we should get which we do not now have, and 
what we should safely retain out of those we have it will be some- 
thing to proceed upon. Daya has to think for us and Snd out 
what will be for our ultimate and lasting good, and what will surely 
bring about ruin, and then proceed to gather the former and eschew 
the latter. Tirumangai Alwar in one place refers to the Lord as 
one * who thinks for me and then extends His mercy towards me ' 



The second epithet * Aatmanaabhigyam* (unaware of my own 
true self) really is explanatory of the first. It is only if I know 
myself properly that I can find out what is good and what is bad. 
If I know myself as the human body I crave for food and for all 
the pleasures of the flesh. If I know myself as a deva I want Amrita 
for my sustenance, and so on. Prone as I am to identify myself 
with the body bestowed on me according to my karma, I am not 
able to see through it and understand my true self as a soul whose 
very nature is Seshatva towards the Lord. 

Added to the two defections, I have nothing of good in me. 
Guna-lava-rahitam. Bereft of the smallest particle of goodness. 
And yet undaunted by these shortcomings and frailties in me 
Daya desires to protect me. (The poet refers to this as a * saahasa ' 
STf tf or a bold and audacious, if not rash, act on the part of 
Daya in Sloka 71). Having made up her mind to protect one like 
me, Daya has to resort to several clever tactics to achieve that 
result viz., winning over the Lord and getting Him to protect me. 
By clever arguments and winsome ways, she annexes the Lord who 
willingly puts Himself in her hands and readily does what she wants 
Him to do. 

Sri Devi and Bhoo-Devi the two Consorts of the Lord ever 
present by His side see what Daya does and how cleverly she achieves 
the redemption and rescue of sinning souls. They feel very glad 
and happy and admire Daya Devi's inordinate skill and adroitness 
and look upon her with admiration and esteem. For is not Daya 
doing what they so keenly desire to do? 



44 DAYAA SATAKAM 



vitarana daksham pakshapaataanabhigyam 
pragunamanuvidheyam praapya padmaasahaayam \ 
Mahatiguna samaaje maanapoorvam Daye! tvam 

prativadasi yathaar-ham paapmanaam maamakaanaam 

Daya Devi! (with a view to defend me against my sins) you 
to the Court presided over by Srinivasa with Padmavathi by His i 
Srinivasa who is reputed for His skill in conferring (on human b 
the (proper and appropriate) fruits of their action, who does not 
what partiality is, and who is (regards Himself as) bound b 
laws of Manu, and before the august assembly constituted I 
great gunas (of the Lord), you by quoting and referring to pran 
(authority and precedent) very cleverly reply to the argumen 
my sins who prosecute me (before that Court). 

Vedanta Desika's Sarva-tantra-swatantratva (mastery 
all the arts, crafts and sciences) is illustrated by this sloka v 
shows to us Ms great and intimate knowledge of the working 
Courts of Justice. It is really marvellous to see how intim 
acquainted he must have been with the theory and practice oi 
and of the fundamentals of jurisprudence. This sloka desc] 
a Sessions Court and its workings in meticulous detail 

The Court is presided over not by a single judge but by a Be 
The word Padmaa-Sahaayam has been deliberately used to de; 
that the Judge is Sreenivasa, the Consort of Padma, and also 
He has the sahaya (help) of Padmavati in deciding cases. A B 
of two judges even today is preferred to a single judge beci 
where there are two judges there is no scope for any one to comp 
of individual caprices or idiosyncracies coming into play. E 
will act as a corrective to the other. 

Then the three requisites of a great and upright judge 
indicated. A judge must have the capacity to sift the right ft 
the wrong and to pass the proper judgment or sentence in e; 
case. His conclusion must be backed up by sanction or the fo 
of authority. In other words not only must he be clever and capa 



DAYAA SATAKAM 45 

ie matter of proper adjudication, but he must be powerful 
gh to effectuate and carry out his own decrees and dictates, 
kvords phala-vitarana-daksham refer to these aspects. Vitarana 
>nly means giving, but also effectively giving the phala or fruit 
ssult of actions. 

The next qualification of a judge is Ms utter impartiality in 
ng and adjudging causes. It may be noted how the poet 

not say 'impartial' but says ignorant of partiality. The 
> must not know to be partial or one-sided: it must have no 

in his constitution or make up. He must dispense justice 

to one and all. 

Dispensation of justice according to law is tjh.e third aspect 
led by Desika here. Manu stands for laws, ordinances, rules 
regulations. Praguna-Manu refers to the great and noted 
u-Dharma Shastra. The judge must obey law: he must be 
vidheya.' subject to and controlled by it, namely law. We 
ere justice according to the strict legal principles and doctrines 
; stressed. In Padmaa-sahaayatva, we have the combination 
5 other principle of justice being tempered with mercy. Padma 
akshmi is the embodiment of Mercy and Her association 
es us of Mercy, whereas the submissiveness to law (Manu- 
yatva) assures us of justice according to law. It is really 
alt even for a modern student of the science of law or juris- 
mce to find fault with Desika's concept of a Judge or in any 
to improve on it. So much for the sentiments incorporated 
5 first half of the sloka. 

The second half shows that the Court is a criminal court where 
nt is tried for offences alleged to have been committed by him, 
tot a civil court where the rights of parties are adjudged. We 
prosecution, defence and what is more, a jury. The sins are 
rosecutors, the guna samaja or assemblage of gunas is the 
and Daya Devi is defence counsel. So minutely indeed is 
lea worked out in this sloka. It is said that Daya Devi (like 
i in the Merchant of Venice) comes into a Court peopled by 
md pleads. Guna is masculine gender. Before that assembly 
200.. Daya, a lady, boldly comes and pleads on my behalf, 
;a very touchingly says. Luckily there is a lady on the Bench 
tavathi. The jury is to advise the judge in regard to conclusions 



44 DAYAA SATAKAM 



qjcq 



vitarana daksham pakshapaataanabhigyam 
pragunamanuvidheyam praapya padmaasahaayam \ 
Mahati guna samaaje maanapoorvam Daye! tvam 

prativadasi yathaar-ham paapmanaam maamakaanaam (33) 

Daya Devi! (with a view to defend me against my sins) you repair 
to the Court presided over by Srinivasa with PadmavatM by His side 
Srinivasa who is reputed for His skill in conferring (on human beings) 
the (proper and appropriate) fruits of their action, who does not know 
what partiality is, and who is (regards Himself as) bound by the 
laws of Maim, and before the august assembly constituted by the 
great gunas (of the Lord), you by quoting and referring to pramaana 
(authority and precedent) very cleverly reply to the arguments of 
my sins who prosecute me (before that Court). 

Vedanta Desika's Sarva-tantra-swatantratva (mastery over 
all the arts, crafts and sciences) is illustrated by this sloka which 
shows to us his great and intimate knowledge of the workings of 
Courts of Justice. It is really marvellous to see how intimately 
acquainted he must have been with the theory and practice of law 
and of the fundamentals of jurisprudence. This sloka describes 
a Sessions Court and its workings in meticulous detail. 

The Court is presided over not by a single judge but by a Bench. 
The word Padmaa-Sahaayam has been deliberately used to denote 
that the Judge is Sreenivasa, the Consort of Padma, and also that 
He has the sahaya (help) of Padmavati in deciding cases. A Bench 
of two judges even today is preferred to a single judge because 
where there are two judges there is no scope for any one to complain 
of individual caprices or idiosyncracies coming into play. Each 
will act as a corrective to the other. 

Then the three rtquisites of a great and upright judge are 
indicated. A judge must have the capacity to sift the right from 
the wrong and to pass the proper judgment or sentence in each 
case. His conclusion must be backed up by sanction or the force 
of authority. In other words not only must he be clever and capable 



DAYAA SATAKAM 45 

in the matter of proper adjudication, but he must be powerful 
enough to effectuate and carry out his own decrees and dictates. 
The words phala-vitarana-daksham refer to these aspects. Vitarana 
not only means giving, but also effectively giving the phala or fruit 
or result of actions. 

The next qualification of a judge is his utter impartiality in 
judging and adjudging causes. It may be noted how the poet 
does not say ' impartial ' but says ignorant of partiality. The 
judge must not know to be partial or one-sided: it must have no 
place in his constitution or make up. He must dispense justice 
alike to one and all. 

Dispensation of justice according to law is the third aspect 
stressed by Desika here. Manu stands for laws, ordinances, rules 
and regulations. Praguna-Manu refers to the great and noted 
Manu-Dharma Shastra. The judge must obey law: he must be 
its * vidheya.' subject to and controlled by it, namely law. We 
see here justice according to the strict legal principles and doctrines 
being stressed. In Padmaa-sahaayatva, we have the combination 
of the other principle of justice being tempered with mercy. Padma 
or Lakshmi is the embodiment of Mercy and Her association 
assures us of Mercy, whereas the submissiveness to law (Manu- 
vidheyatva) assures us of justice according to law. It is really 
difficult even for a modern student of the science of law or juris- 
prudence to find fault with Desika's concept of a Judge or in any 
way to improve on it. So much for the sentiments incorporated 
in the first half of the sloka. 

The second half shows that the Court is a criminal court where 
i man is tried for offences alleged to have been committed by him, 
ind not a civil court where the rights of parties are adjudged. We 
ind prosecution, defence and what is more, a jury. The sins are 
;he prosecutors, the guna samaja or assemblage of gunas is the 
ury and Daya Devi is defence counsel. So minutely indeed is 
he idea worked out in this sloka. It is said that Daya Devi (like 
> ortia in the Merchant of Venice) comes into a Court peopled by 
nen and pleads. Guna is masculine gender. Before that assembly 
>f men. Daya, a lady, boldly comes and pleads on my behalf, 
)esika very touchingly says. Luckily there is a lady on the Bench 
*admavathi. Thfi inrv ic t/^ a/fmej* +^<* I-,-,A~^ :~ . 



46 DAYAA SATAKAM 

Lord such as the shad-gunaas referred to in sloka 15 above, the 
guanas like swaatantrya (independence) etc. indicated in sloka 25, 
and the gunaas like vaatsalya (tenderness and affection) all of 
them together constitute the consultative body the Jury in this 
trial of the human soul. 

The sins themselves are the prosecutors. There are as many 
prosecutions, charges and charge-sheets as there are sins alleged 
to have been committed by the accused. Daya Devi counters 
and refutes all of them in the process of defending the accused at 
the bar* Some commentators have said that the gunaas are the 
prosecutors. It is however submitted that the words paapmanaam- 
prativadasi (you argue against sins) clearly indicate that the sins 
are the prosecutors and Daya Devi argues contra. In another 
place Desika employs the same analogy of a vakil pleading as 
against sins " Durvaara-teevra-durita-prativaavadookaihi" (Dehalee- 
sastuti) and there also the reference is to arguing against sins. 

On what basis does Daya Devi repel the prosecution arguments 
by pointless rhetoric or arguments adhomineml No, Maanapoor- 
varn* Based on authority., both the written law and the inter- 
preted law in the shape of precedents. Daya Devi's defence argu- 
ments are all submitted in strict accordance with law. No beating 
about the bush and humming and hawing without relevant or 
substantial material. Desika seems to give tips even to lawyers, 

The woT&pragmamanuvidheyam has been split up mtopragmam 
and mimclheyum by some commentators. Pragunam means 
excellent; anu-vidheyam means amenable to every one. Both 
these are to be taken as adjectives of Padmaashayam. This inter- 
pretation though possible does not appear to be more apt and 
appropriate than the one adopted above, which fits in with the 
lofty conception and full description of a judge which Desika 
seems to aim at in the sloka. 



ft ^ 3* ^Fftfasftforai feftfisapMtfa: n%sipi$ > ^iift*) 

Anubhavitum aghaugham naalam agaami 

Kaalaha Prasamayitum asesham nishkriyabhir nasakyam i 

Smxyamitihi Dayei tvm sweekruta Sreenivasaa 

Shithilvka bhavabheetihi Shreyase Jayase naha (34) 



DA1TAA SATAiUM ** 



seeing that all time to come will not suffice for my 
king out the multitude of my sins, and Ihjit those coiintless sins can 
merer be totally extinguished by Hie performance of suitable praayas- 
cMttas or expiations, yon of your own accord come into being; for w 
welfare, annex: Lard Sraftivaasa, and convert Hiftt to ywr view point, 
and thereby loosen and destroy our frightful shackles of sannsara. 

It looks as if one very convincing argument of Daya Devi 
as our defence counsel is given by w^y of illustration or specimen 
in this sLoka. 

The sins committed by us rise up as our prosecutors and damotir 
for the appropriate punishment being accorded to us for those 
sins. Daya Devi argues thereupon thus; "Well, be it so. But 
has any one thought of this? Even granting that this accused 
ceases committing any further sins from this -moment, what length 
of time will be taken up in his working out all his untold multitude 
of sins committed: dining ages on ages! In all time to come he will 
be undergoing punishment. Time may cease but the sentences 
for the crime committed by him will not have run out. How then 
is anyone going to properly and adequately punish him and see 
that he serves the periods of all sentences of punishment for his 
sins. This is on the assumption that he ceases to sin from this 
iaiEment-am imp osstble assumption. In fact he is going on committing 
in the fraction of a second (kshanaardha) crimes and sins which will 
qualify Mm for all the hell-fires for all eternity. If it is impossible 
to. punish him fully for all his sins, and only a portion of his sins 
is caqpable of being punished, where are you going to draw the line? 
if.fou.are going to excuse and quash a portion of his merited punish- 
ment, why not excuse and quash the whole?" 

- Finding it difficult to meet this very pertinent argument, the 
question of working out the sins by expiatory ceremonies is raised 
by some one in court, either by some member of the jury or from 
the Betich. Daya Devi readily retorts "you do mot know this 
accused person as well as I know him. He never commits sins 
for which expiations are prescribed. He makes it a point to commit 
only such sins as are classified as 6 heinous ' and for which no one 
can ever lay dawn a course of expiation. And if ever there is an 
act .for which expiation is laid down and he were to adopt it, in 
tlte course of that very procels of expiation he commits gross apa- 



48 BAYAA SATAKAM 

expiation itself useless. So one has to draw a blank here al 
So, what is left but to pardon? Thus arguing Daya melts 1 
heart of the Lord. In other words Daya takes birth in the Lor 
heart. That is shown by the the use of the word Jayaase, you '< 
Ipom. For our Shreyas or glory and benefit you are born. Swayana 
you take birth of your own accord, not even at our request 
prayer. Unsolicited, you take shape and work for our good 1 
capturing Sreenivasa; and thereby our fears in regard to relea 
from samsara or the cycle of birth and death get loosened an 
ultimately lost. Even for me there is thus hope of safety an 
security. 



Avatarana viseshaihi atmaleelaapadesaihi 

Avamatim anukampel mandachitteshu vindan i 

Vrishabhashikari nathaha tvannidesena noonam 

Bhajati Sharana bhaajaam bhaavino janmabhedhaan " (35) 

Anukampa! the great Lord of Vrishabha Hill, at your behest 
and on your command, takes on several different births in this world, 
which series of births should really be undergone by those who have 
become His Saranaagataas. And He pretends to do so out of His 
sportive instinct; (far from being praised for this vicarious act of 
nobility) ;Bfe receives nothing but disregard disrespect and contempt 
at the hands of the foolish. 

r JBvery deed must receive its reward or punishment. So where 
fhe* several and countless janmaas (births) of the individual soul 
which that soul must have taken in order to enjoy the fruits of its 
actions, are wiped out by the gracious intervention of Daya, someone 
must in the place of that soul take those births. Daya ordains 
that the Lord Himself should do so. And in obedience to that 
command the Lord takes several births or avataaraas in this world, 
As He does so on the initiation and at the instigation of Daya, 
these avataaraas . of th Lord are Daya-kaarya, or the work of Daya., 
They are also dictated by Leela or sport. The Lord is born not 
because of karma but out of His own sweet will and pleasure., 



DAYAA SATAKAM 49 

And He enjoys His births and avataaraas. So they are also due 
to the sportive instinct in Him. But as the immediate cause of 
the avataara is Daya, sport becomes a secondary and auxiliary 
cause and so is referred to here as an apadesa -pretext. It redounds 
to the Lord's greatness that He takes those several janmaas in spite 
of the fact that fools (referred to as J^TJ: in the Gita) do 
not understand Him aright (sr^iafccT) but begin to abuse and 
despise Him. That is referred to in this sloka by the words Ava- 
matim and vindan. 

The lives to come for those who give themselves up to the Lord 
(Stiarana-bhaajaam) are undergone by the Lord at the dictate, of 
Daya. In their qase it would have been a punishment and a banish- 
ment; but in the case of the Lord it is a leela, sport. 

By the use of the word * noonam ' the poet signifies that it is 
really so, and incidentally indicates that it is an utpreksha nice 
poetical fancy. 



wife *!* WB 

Parahitam Anukampe! bhaavayantyaam bhavatyaam 

Sthiram anupadhi haardam Sreenivaso dadhaanahai 
Lalita ruchishu Lakshmee Bhoomi-Neelasu noonam 
. Prathayati bahumaanam twatpratichchandabudhyan (36) 

Devi Anukampa! Lord Sreenivasa who bears permanent and 
spontaneous love towards you who always think of the welfare and 
well-being of others, displays great regard toward.5 His Consorts 
Lakshmi Devi, Bhoodevi and Neeladevi of attractive brilliance and 
glory, only because He thinks that they are reflectioas (images) of you. 

Lest the reader should get the idea that the Lord may get vexed 
with Daya Devi for compelling Him to suffer the indignities of 
avataara as indicated in the previous sloka, the poet hastens in this 
sloka to postulate the great regard that He has towards Daya. 
And he does it with remarkable effect by pointing out that the 
Lord's great regard for, and love towards, His Cqnsorts are really 
the outcome of His noticing and appreciating tfre great quality of 



50 DAY A A S ATAK AM 

The Lord's fondness towards Daya is anupaSii, 
not due to aay cause; spontaneous. Daya by nature is ever am 
anoa mindful of p ara-hitam or the welfare and well-being of othess 
Jtoi will indicate not only otters but also enemies. It is Daytf 
great quaEty that she wiH think, of, and act for, the welfare .of crwi 
enemies of the Lord. As her name employed in this sloka Aim 
kampa (sympathy) indicates, she shudders over in line with tbc 
sufferer. That the Lord's Hmardam, love or fondness, is alsa eternal 
permanent, is indicated by the word sthiram. 

Rucki is kaiiti or lustre. LaMta-Ridii is cb&nmng t elegant 
and .pleasing lustre. The Lard ? & eousortS; Lakshmi, 
and Neda possess charm aad lustre* in a pfeeiateent 
In fact Lakshmi stands for Soumdarya y Laavamya Mil *tt 
forms. But it is pointed out here, the Lord, likes them mosl not 
because of that quality of theirs but because in His opinion, t^ 
His eyes, they appear to be reflections of Daya Devi. The Lo^ 
looks upon His consorts as images (prati-bimbhas) of Daya and 
therefore He manifests protkayoii His bafiwmacmam or high esteem 
towards them.i la the first decad of stotra we saw Desika 
dealing with these three Consorts 'of the Lord in Slokas 6, 7 and 8 
and demonstrating how they- really help in the redemption of the 
human soul wMch is Daya's special 



Daya being an attribute lias f eally no . body f her o?w:, 
Lakshmi, Bhoomi and Neela have lustrous roopa or foim And 
yet the Lord's great love towards tto is traceable not to tirar 
beauty and ekgauqe boi to tfaek possessing kt common with Daya 
the trait of redeeming souls ia distress. That is why the Lord's 
fondness for Daya is said to be anupadhi causeless* and it is at 
the same time pointed out that Lakshmi and the other two consorts. 
are held in high esteem because of their emulating Daya in .the 
process of divinising human souls. The use of the word ' noonam ' 
meaning c indeed * shows that the poet is again indulging in an 
wtprekska* 



1 1 



SATAEAM mi *^ V H 

'^nsiiagm scmdhssku -vya&jat v&asm bhaajaarfy^ \ 
durit kalwsMtamaam d&oymmanaa DayV \tjyqm 

Immm vilayakaaJe Kacmdisheekasmruteenaam ^' , % 
smmayasi batmkekmi Maadhavam $mva& 

Daya I>evil Being distressed by the plight of persons stained by* 
BBS who happen to reside in the proximity of Tirumala Hill on some 
retext or other, yon with great care and attention remind the ever 
portful Madhava about them when they are in extremis* bereft of 
Sought and memory, and when their faculties have aH faded away. 

Having described in the previous four sk>ka& what tbe Lw<| 
.oes at Daya's behest for us, in this and the next three slokas, the 
twt proceeds to indicate how Daya helps us in Ihe process of 

cdteeining s* TMs- sloka describes how dwimg our test moment 
fa&& di^tli is CTeepitig over us, Daya reminds the LoM alxraf w 

Bd socM*es fer "us His^ gra^e and bounty. 

Based on the Gita Sloka beginning $ 4 ^ifcr^T^'YamYamVaapi 
maram* (VIII 6) a theory lias been adopted in several cparters 
ml unless a, man thinks of the Lord when he cjuits this, body, he 
aanot attain Moksha,, One can easily envisage how owiqg t& 
sveial reasons a man may be unable to think of God at that parti* 
alar roommL Vide the Mukunda Mala Sloka in which that poet 
sets to t^ce shelter at the feet of the Lord here and 
ince it may become impossible latex when kqpha vaata and 
cusJbt the body an4 make smaratia or remembraiace 
oiyalvar has aba smag to the same ejEFect by saying * I may mot 
e able to think of you when I leave this body and therefore I mention* 
i- you even now in. advance,* This antimansmriti (or iremembraace, 
f God during the last moments of our life) as it is called, is regarded, 
s a sine qua non for the attainment of Mukti. In this sloka Desika 
Biers to- tins and vary nicely reconciles the divergent viewpoints 
bout it, Antima snariti literally means remembering at ttoe vary end/ 
Ms rcaiembfaii.ee may be the indivtdwi soufs or it may toe tte 
la the Vaiaha Purana ft has been saM by the Lord Hiw^tf ' 



\\ 

When my bhakta is about to die and lies prostrate .ami inert fike 
stone or log of wood. I remember him and lead him to the 




BAYAA SATAKAM 

ment, of the chetana. There has been son 
of * whether antima smriti, meaning therel 

e ehet^aa's rep^|lbrance during his last moments, is necessai 
3Vdfrjn, tHb.oasp.bf a prapanna. Some say that it is totally uj 
necessary. Others say that the Lord will infuse into the prapanr 
a thought of "Him during the last moments and thereby ratisl 
that condition for the attainment of mukti. This problem is vei 
nicely solved, or rather dissolved by Desika here, by saying that w 
can be certain of His remembering us during our last moment: 
And any day His remembrance of us is likely to be more effectiv 
and fruitful than our remembrance of Him. 

This sloka tells us that Daya Devi it is that is responsible, fo 
Baking the Lord remember us in our last moments. He is a bahu 
fee/fl_one interested in several sports or activities. He is proty 
to forget. But Daya Devi with great care reminds Him about w 
at the psychological moment and makes Him remember us. 

But this blessing in the shape of the Lord's thinking of us a 
that moment {^<sQ&!ft&&i (Su/rifCSu/r^i as Nammalwar h&s 
put it) will be available only if we happen to pass - into eternity 
in some place near Tirumala Hill. Inspite of being tainted b} 
sins, if a man resides in the vicinity of Tirumala, thereby he becomes 
tie object of Daya Devi's care and affection. When Daya finds 
him in that state with his memory gone, his faculties lost, just 
existing as a log of wood or stone, her compassion for him is roused 
and at once she reminds the Lord and makes Him remember the 
poor man in that wretched plight. That she does it with great 

care and attention is shown by the woid * saavadhaanaa 9 witli 

diligent attention. , 

: The. two references to the Lord here are * bahujeelam ' and. 
VMaadbavam W~i$ultispo.rtive, and Consort af Sri, . While He is'0- 
grossed dn His jagat-vyaapaara or wprld-management, Daya Devi 
succeeds in drawing His attention to one poor mortal who is a;bout, 
to breathe his last. And He is Madhava, the Lord of Sri. Together 
He and Lakshmi take care of the soul of the dying man and lead 
it safely to eternal bliss. , , 



/ QX- ' X 

f " \ 

DAYAA SATAKAM \ S3 

nsidisigatividbhihi Desikayarneeyamaanaa s 

Sthirataram Anukampe! styaanalagnaagwaistvam i * , . ~^ 

'arigata Vrishasailam paaram aaropayantee . ' _ - ' 

bhavajaladhidi gataanaam potapaatree bhavitree n (38) 

Anukampa Devi! you are like a boat carrying mortals immersed 
i the ocean of Samsara safely to the shore. Like the boat that is 
:eered by persons well-acquainted with the routs over the seas in 
U directions, you are led by Acharyas who know all the means pres- 
ribed by the Sastras. Like the boat that is tightly fastened together 
Y sturdy ropes, you are entwined steadfastly with the great gunas 
f the Lord. Like the boat that takes people through the wafer to 
ie shore, you take those struggling in the ocean of Samsara tb the 
lore known as Lord Srinivasa in (near) Vrishasaila. 

As in sloka 18 ante. Sri Vedanta Desika employs sleshaalamkara 
i this sloka. Daya devi is likened to a boat. The boat is navigated 
y desikas. The term * desika * connotes one who is familiar with 
aths and places, also a < guide. Desika of course also means a 
uru, an, Acharya, a preceptor. In the case of the ordinary boat, 
has to be, and is safely navigated by experienced persons who 
now the way intimately and can be relied upon to guide the boat 
i every necessary direction disi disi. In the case of Daya she is 
iken to individuals by Acharyas who are well-acquainted with 
ie; several paths prescribed for spiritual progress. 

Taking the constitution of the boat, a boat is made 6f planks 
rmly bound together by strong ropes. Guna means a " rope. It 
Iso means an attribute. Daya is firmly tied to the other gunas 
f the Lord. This has been already pointed out in Slokas 11 arid 
5. The close association of Daya with the other attributes of 
ie Lord is -once again emphasised by the poet here. 

A bo&t'is needed for carrying persons across the water. Those 
r ho stand in need of Daya are persons desiring to cross the ocean of 
amsara. In fact they are persons struggling in the sea and their 
raving for si boat to take them to land must be more keen than the 
esire of .persons td cross the sea from one shore to another. Padrarh 
leans shore. Here the shore of safety to the chetana drowned 
i Sarrtsara is only the Lord. This shore of Srinivasa is pafigaia 
rishasaila, Le.$ one who has come to Vrishasaila. Normally ; a 
oat can land only at a place level with the water. Where Daya 
)evi is the boat she can not only make us land in safety, 1 but 'also 



M DAYAA SATAKAM 

raise us to high places lite Tiramata. Hie team 



if given its Ml neajrifie will indicate not only getting ant of wat< 
into the land slightly higher, hut also elevating a persan to gnes 
frights. 

Tim term Vi&Jmupota must be very familiar to students < 
Mukundamala. Andal has also referred to the Lord as a Q &**>&- 
,a Tamil word conveying the same meaning as the Sanskrit woi 
jwta (a boat* a vessel, a ship). Here Desika refers to Daya as tl 
hoat and the Lord as the shore to be reached wiih the aid erf thj 



Timt Daya is aecessiHe aad available nly to tjkose mho obtai 
the Messtag of a Oare :or Adiya is wry uAc^fy sm^^ted bgr fl 
first paada of the stoka. 



J 

n 



Bmimita j^Jmmgmt ^mmimah kimpackmmha 



Amikampel pra^tcwafym 
Vrishagiri Harimeektm ^y^Uam mninatti* (1 

: Devi Anukampa! To the small-minded beings, desirous of obtai 
ing low and limited enjoyments, at the vast market place called i 
Yedas, PH% eper feU of fawar and good disposition (towmds then 
Show (point OTQ tbe $rat blue SafWr^ shining in close associate 
Hitk pearls; and highly pleased wMt it they eiipy it 

Beautiful steia. Tte Vedas constitute a mst aitd expansr 
paifeet ^ace im whid^ one can purchase- anything one wants. 
m aot jpvca to evearyoae to go in for sif>eiiGr aad valuabfe artidi 
Most of us are coateat with objects yielding small and evaaasee 
If whfle sire^kg toomgh that big bazaar we happ 
get into toidk wto lofty aad noble minded persons,, tlaey ckaa 
tastes for tke better and take us to skops tlieran wber we 
0et 'valuable- aad precious gpods. This analogy is pfes^d in 
serabe % the pc^et hfire. The Vedas populate several t^eefe 
and lay down rules aad regulations for attaimmg ea 
Alpap}mlcm and mtMr^halaasr-smaU fets aad er^ai 



DAYAA SATAKAM 55 

sent fruits are there in plenty. There is also the peerless pleasure 
rf Divine enjoyment for which the Vedas show the way. We 
iave been too long associated with the body and the senses and 
we have begun to believe that only the pleasures of the body and 
the senses are pleasures worth having. We therefore get attached 
Lo those parimita phalas, or fruits limited in enjoyment. The 
word kimpachaanaah denotes our niggardliness even in regard to 
desires. Not being able to look aloft, we hanker for silly and 
stupid things. If perchance while going round the bazaar we 
come across a great personality imbued with a desire to cure us 
of our small-mindedness and to make us desire for the lofty tilings 
of the Spirit, he will take us to another portion of the bazaar where 
the wares exhibited will be attractive and elevating articles. Taken 
there we begin to crave for those articles and the pleasures they can 
afford us. The desire for small things disappears and the taste 
for great things is roused in us. This is exactly what happens to 
one who seeks the aid of Daya Devi to obtain the proper goods 
at the market place of the Vedas. She is always prasadanam prap- 
tavtyaa imbued with a tendency to shower favours on us. If 
we go to her and ask for her help to obtain some small pleasures, 
she corrects our desires and sublimates them into a hankering 
for eternal communion with the most beautiful and gracious Lord. 
The Lord is referred to as the blue sapphire in this sloka Hari- 
neela. Neela is blue sapphire. The term Hari has several meanings. 
Here it is given the meaning Tndra. Harineela means Indraneela a 
blue sapphire nonp.ireil (without equal). This sapphire shines 
supreme amongst a setting of pearls. The words nitya-mukta- 
anushaktam means eternally combined with pearls. It also means 
living jointly with nityas and muktcts who are celestial beings residing 
in Paramapada the abode of eternal Bliss. 

In the 37th sloka Daya's help in reminding God about us 
was referred to. In the next sloka her rescuing us from, the sea 
of samsara and landing us safely at the feet of the Lord was referred 
to. In this sloka the poet deals with that superior trait of Dayadevi 
which cleanses us of low thoughts and ideas and helps us to desire 
for God Himself. Incidentally Vrishagiri is equated with Parama- 
padal and the Hari or Vishnu of that place shown to be a nityaamuk- 
taanushakta or One eternally served by nityas like Ananta Garuda 
and Vishwaksena as also by the Muktas or souls released from 
bondage, ie. 9 chetanas who once were wallowing in Samsara but 
have now become celestials by the Grace (Daya) of God. 



56 DAYAA SATAKAM 



Tvayi bahumatiheenah Sreenivaasaanukampe ! 

Jagatigatim ihaanyaam Devil sammanyate yaha \ 
Sakhalu vibudha sindhau sannikarshe vahantyaam 

Samayati mrigatrishnaaveechikaabhih pipaasaam (40 

Anukampa of Srinivasa! Devi! He, who, in this world, having TO 
regard for you, thinks highly of other means (or ends) will be quenchuij 
his thirst by the waves of the mirage when the clestial Ganges flow: 
nearby. 

The excellence of the Lord which surpasses all else (sara 
bhogyaatisaayee) was very well brought about by the previou 
sloka. It is emphasised here once again by pointing out the stupi 
dity of a person who accepts smaller things when He is willing aiw 
ready to make Himself available through the intervention of Daya 

A particular idea is sought to be impressed an the reader 'b 
eminent poets and philosophers both positively and negative!] 
which is known as the anvaya method and vyatirdka method res 
pectively. 

It was pointed out in the previous sloka that by contacting Daya 
one's desires themselves become ennobled and the aim and goa 
of human life get pitched high. In this sloka is described the tru 
state of a person who rejecting Daya's help, craves for othe 
ends or for help from other quarters. He is likened to one seekinj 
to quench his thirst by the waters of the mirage. Mirage as i 
well known is an apparition which gives the impression of wate 
flowing at a distance. It is a mere optical illusion caused by th 
refractive effect of hot and cold air at a distance, very often simulatin] 
the appearance of water. It is called mrigatrishnfka because animals 
stags and deer, are wont to be deceived by this illusion and rui 
after the imagined water to quench their thirst. 

A man is terribly thirsty. Within a few feet from where h 
is, the divine Ganga flows majestically with plenty of water, a mouth 
ful of which will quench his thirst. But he will not go to the Ganga 
the distant mirage attracts his eyes, and he runs towards it, lure< 
by the wavy waters that he imagines to exist there. That is ai 



DAYAA SATAKAM 57 

benefits to be obtained from other sources. The bounty of Day a 
Devi is certain and is sure to obtain for us everlasting good. It 
is up to us therefore to approach her and obtain those benefits. 
Let us no: emuhuo the man whose pitiable mentality is so forcefully 
portrayed in this Sloka, who will not touch the water that is available, 
but will run after water that does not exist. 

The decad thus ends by emphasising the cussedness and 
stupidity of persons who will not accept the help preferred by 
Daya, and the merit and cleverness of those who with her help 
obtain the highest pleasures that a human soul can ever crave for. 
This idea grows into the next decad as we shall see. 



ii 
DAYAA SATAKAM 

FIFTH DECAD. 



S the Stotra grows in intensity and fervour, the metres employed 
for each decad can also be seen to grow in volume and 
cadence. From the fifth to the ninth decad the five different metres 
employed in them are all 17 lettered. We start with MANDAA- 
KRAANTA in this decad. 

The topic also grows. SREYASTADDHETU DAATA is Desika's 
topic for the fifth centurium of verse in Nammalwar's Tiruvoimozhi. 
The ninth sloka in this decad starts with the word " SREYASSOOTIM " 
definitely and unambiguously indicating the adoption of the said 
topic for this decad. Let us see what that " SREYAS " is, and what 
it is that furnishes us the means to attain the same. 

^!f f 



Aagnaam Khyaatim dhanam anucharaan aadhiraajyaadikam vaa 
Kaale drishtvaa Kamalavasterapi akinchit karaani \ 

Padmaakaantam pranihitavateem paalane ananyasaadhye 
saaraabhignaah jagati kritinah samsrayante Day el tvaam (41) 

Bayadevi/ Seeing (realising) that power, fame, wealth, retinue 



DAYAA SATAKAM 59 

blessed and the fortunate in this world, who know the essence of 
things, resort to you, who enjoin Srinivasa to take to the act of 

protection an act which no one else can perform or take to. 

In sloka 39 above Dcsika referred to ' Parimitaphalas.* This 
sloka refers to Brahma the Creator and points out how the power, 
fame, wealth etc., appertaining to his position are all impermanent, 
certain as they are to come to an end at some point of time. The 
highest Slhana or place in the cosmic hierarchy is that of Brahma. 
If his position itself is precarious, what about ours? Aagnaa 
refers to position and power-wielding influence,-exercising command 
and enforcing obedience. Khyaati is fame. Dhanam is of course 
wealth. By the term Anucharaan is indicated the large retinue 
of servants and others ready to obey the commands and carry out 
the behests of the person in power. Aadhirajyam connotes a 
great empire, the ruler of which will have several kings and kingdoms 
under him. Several devas and several men can claim to possess 
all these vestiges of soveriegnty. By indicating that all these, even 
if they appertain to Brahma, get reduced to nothing on certain 
occasions and at certain times, the poet wants us to understand 
that, if this be the case with Brahma, how much more impermanent, 
nay, how much more evanescent, will be the power, fame and wealth 
of others lower down in the hierarchy. 

Power, fame wealth etc., may be alluring and attractive to 
the majority of men and women in the world. But they fail to 
make any impression upon the Kritinah, the blessed among men. 
Because they are Saaraabhignaaha, persons who have analysed 
things for themselves and found out the true Saara or essence. 
The great saints of this country like Prahlada and Nammalwar 
are evidently in Desika's mind here. Scorning all the wealth of 
all the worlds, Prahlaada prayed only for Bhakti towards the Lord. 
Nammalwar in one place says that power and position pertaining 
to high places in this world or the next, will not be cared for by 
great persons who have inordinate love towards the Lord's 
feet. Even if mastery over all the three worlds is offered to such 
great souls, they will never regard that offer as worth considering 
(Q&rr&r <*f^ <su //jy 07 sotff jgo/S u' IT) . 

Kaale-akinchitkaraani-dnshtvaa Seeing how at times they 
become worthless. We find from the Puranas, how Brahma 
was robbed of the Vedas and all his other wealth by Asuras like 



60 DAYAA SATAKAM 

Madhu and Kaitapa. Even without that, as there is not the posit: 
content of divine enjoyment in the enjoyment of the Brahmapat 
or the titular greatness of Brahma, there is nothing that can ten 
the true devotee of God. For all these reasons the * Krliina 
never set their mind or eye upon pomp and splendour. 

What is it that they do? They seek you. Why? Becai 
you have the power to enjoin the great Lord who is the Cons 
of Sri to afford true and lasting protection to your, and therefi 
His, devotees. That protection or Paalana is Ananyasaadhya 
not available with any one else. Srinivasa alone is the able protec 
of all the worlds. Saranaagata-Rakshana or the protection 
Saranaagatas is in the exclusive province of Lord Srinivasa. 
the wise rely on His Daya or mercy and the protection He extei 
to those who look up to Him for help. 



Praajaapatyaprabhriti vibhavam prekshya paryaayadukham 
Janmaakaankshan vrishagirfvane jagmushaam tastushaam vaa \ 

Aaasaasaanah katichana vibhoh tvatparishvanga dhanyaihi 
Angeekaaram kshanamapi Dayel haardatungairapaangaihin ( 

Daya Devi! Realising that the glory of Prajaapati (Brahi 
and others is really a synonym for grief, the (fortunate) few desii 
of securing, albeit for a fleeting moment, the Lord's love-laden Kai 
ksha blessed by your embrace, crave for existence as an anin 
or inanimate object in the forests of Vrishagirl. 

Talking about the Saarabhignaha in the previous sloka bri 
to the mind of the poet the rare mystic experiences of such g: 
souls as Kulasekharalwar, who prayed for existence in Tirum 
in some form or another, animate or inanimate. The useless] 
of Brahmapadavi as realised by those Kritinah (blessed men 
reiterated in the opening paada of this Sloka, where the vibha 
or glory of Brahma and others is equated to dukkham or mis 
Spurning those so called high positions they yearn for some f 



DAYAA SATAKAM 61 

Hill they are thoroughly indifferent to the nature of the connec- 
tion or contact. Jagmushaam is mobile, moveable, Tasthushaam 
is immobile, immoveable. Whether as moveable objects like a 
bird, a fish, a human being or champaka plant, or immoveable 
objects like a pathway, a hill crest, or a step (u^) Kulasekhara 
has sung about his desire for existence in Tiravengadam. The 
indifference to the form is reflected in the penultimate verse of that 
impassioned decad of this Alwar in praise of Tirumalai where 
he exclaims 'oiLD^u-^uirr^T Qufrssrtr.Ssb'Sti aJ ^-(S^^Lfi ^(SauG&sr 
(I shall like to become anything on the golden Hill of my Lord.) 

Why is it that such great men evince this sort of desire ? Desika 
explains it by pointing out that they are prompted by their 
great desire to be the recipient of one gracious glance or Kataaksha 
issuing out of those merciful and beautiful eyes of the Lord. 
Apaanga means a glance, a look. That look is haardatunga 
affection-laden. Even a more beautiful sentiment given expression 
to here about the Lord's glances or Kataaksha is found in the words 
Tvatparishvanga-Dhanyaihi meaning ennobled by your embcace, 
referring to Dayadevi. This is a very favourite theme with Vedanta 
Desika. Innumerable are the places in his stotras where he refers 
to the benign Kataaksha of the Lord as at once sanctified and 
beautified by close contact with Daya or mercy. In the Gopala 
Vimsati the Lord's apaangas are referred to as lotuses blossoming 
in the stream of Anukampaa (annukampaasarit ambujairapaangaihi). 
In the Dehalisa Stuti they arc referred to as Dayaabharitai- 
rapaangaihi. It is ativela dayottarangam in Devanayaka Panchasat. 
Renouncing the seeming glory and splendour of all other forms 
of existence including the status of Brahma, Siva, Indra, and so on, 
the great devotees of the Lord crave for some form of life connected 
with the sacred Hill of Tirumala just for the purpose of being 
able to receive, albeit for a short while, even for a fleeting moment, 
the gracious Kataaksha emanating from the lovely eyes of Lord 
Srinivasa. Readers would have noticed pointed reference having 
been made to Lord Srinivasa's Kataaksha in several earlier Slokas 
such as 19 and 20. We shall take the opportunity towards the 
end of the decad, where in two successive slokas Desika refers to 
the same Kataaksha, to look deeper into the significance of the 
several references. 



62 DAYAA SATAKAM 



fam wftswfe if<ft ^f^i enwtai II 

Naabhee padma sphurana subhagaa Navyaneelotpalaabhaa 
Kreedaa-sailam Kamapi Karunel winvatee venkataakhyam \ 

Seeia nityam prasadanavalee sraddadhaanaavagaahyaa 

Dlvyaa kaachit jayati mahatee deerghikaa taavakeenaa \\ (43 

Devi Karana! A long and lovely lake belonging to you shines 
glorious and effulgent in (your) pleasure-mountain, called Venkatadri 
It is beautified by a lotus in its navel. It has the attractive beautj 
of just blossomed blue lilies. It is ever cool. It is ever clear and 
pellucid. It is capable of being bathed in by those who have sraddha 
or faith- It is celestial and big. 

* Sreyas ' meaning bliss or beatitude is described in this and 
the succeeding sloka in two different forms. Its attractiveness 
is dealt with in this sloka, and its superiority over all other pleasures, 
in the next one. The Lord who is that * Sreyas ' is likened to a 
long and lovely lake. The simile or upama is carried into minute 
details. A lake is beautified by lotus flowers in its centre. Naabhee 
meaning navel indicates centre. Applied to the Lord, the lotus 
sprouting from His navel (naabhee padmarn) beautifies the person 
of the Lord. The beauty caused by the effulgence of that lotus 
makes the Lord's form lovely and attractive. Like the lotus, 
the blue lily also is a water flower and such flowers abound in lakes. 
Lord Srinivasa's beautiful form is blue like the blue lilies. The 
words * navya neeloipalaabhaa * indicate the lustre of fresh blown 
blue-lilies. The freshness is as precious as the blueness to the 
devotee. The freshness added to the blueness increases the devotees* 
enjoyment. The aptness of the term * navya neelotpalaabhaa * 
will be enjoyed by every devotee of Lord Srinivasa who is privileged 
to worship Him on a Friday evening after Abhishekam and alan- 
karam. He will simply be stunned at the freshness and loveliness 
of the Lord. Ever fresh and lovely, He will appear more fresh 
and lovely than usual then. Valmiki describes Rama in one place 
as " Prabuddha Neelotpala tulya darsanaha." The Alwars very 
often grow mad over the freshness and loveliness of the Lord's 



DAYAA SATAKAM 63 

blue form. All that enjoyment is compressed by Desika into the 
one beautiful phrase Navya Nceloptalaabhaa. 

The next attribute describing the beauty of the lake on the 
one hand and of the Lord on the other in the form of Slesha is 
seetaa nityam ($f!c!T fa^ ), ever cool. Just like a man 
who has walked a long distance in the hot midday sun loves to 
take a plunge into the cool waters of a neighbouring lake, we 
mortals, scorched by the taapatraya, or threefold heat, look forward 
to a dip into the cool and refreshing reservoir that is Lord Srinivasa. 
In the Devanayaka panchasat Desika sings about rf ^ cl2ifcftra vile? 
SRSJ-JUST " greeshme tataakamiva seetamanupravishtaa." 

The word ' nityam ' can be annexed not only to the word 
* seeta ' that precedes it, but also to * prasadanavatee ' that comes 
after. * Prasadana ' in reference to the lake means clearness, 
transparency. In reference to the Lord it connotes His quality 
of being pleased and gracious. Lord Srinivasa is described by 
this term as being ever kind and gracious. 

The next epithet is sraddadhaanaavagaahyaa, capable of being 
bathed in by those who desire to do so with faith and fervour. 
The Lord similarly is to be enjoyed by those who have sraddhaa 
or faith in His Grace, and who feel attracted by His beauty. This 
epithet seems to be a literal translation of the expression iirirL^u 
(Su/r&iafffr Quir&uBQgp in the first verse of Goda's Tiruppavai. 
Those words mean, "those who are desirous of taking a 
bath, please come forward." The bath, she is referring to, is the 
same as what is being described in this sloka by Dedka. a bath 
in the Hari-saras (Hari-tank) as Mukundamaalaa will have it. 
No qualification or condition precedent need be acquired or fulfilled 
to approach God; only there must be a keen and intensive desire 
to immerse oneself in God. 

Three one word epithets follow divyaa, kaachit, and mahatee 
each of them applicable to the lake and to the Lord alike. ' Divya ' 
means excellent as applied to the lake, and divine or celestial as 
applied to the Lord. 'Kaachit' implies indescribability, which 
applies equally to the lake the poet is thinking of, as also to the 
Lord whom he is praising. ' Mahatee ' means big. This also 
applies both to the lake and to the Lord. 

Deerghikaa; a lake, a longish lake usually. This idea of 
describing the Lord as a huge reservoir has been expressed by 
9 ^ 



64 DAYAA SATAKAM 

several devotees. Nammalwar, in one of his impassioned songs, 
prays to the Lord to come walking towards him like a pirn saw 
$rr Gijfr&^^L-tJ, a long lotus-bearing and fragrant tank, 
or lake. He describes in full detail such a tank; and Desika 
follows that method here. The Mukundamala sloka beginning 
with the words * Karacharana saroje ' also describes in meticulous 
detail the several aspects or parts of the Harisaras or Vishnu tank. 
Needless to cite other similar passages. Great souls revel in similar 
sentiments and even identical language at times. 

Desika refers to this saras or deerghikaa as Daya devi's property 
or possession. The Tirumala Hill is her pleasure-resort, kreedaa- 
sailam. This deerghikaa, or lake, is part of that hill and is shown 
here to be the exclusive property of Dayadevi. 

A very beautiful sloka, scintillating with literary beauty and 
divine fragrance. Who will not feel attracted after reading this 
sloka to visit Tirumala and to immerse himself in the ever fresh, 
the ever-fragrant, and ever cool beauty and grace of Lord Srinivasa? 



Yasmin drishte taditarasukhaih gamy ate goshpadatvam 
Satyam gnaanam tribhir avadhibhlrmuktam aanandasindhum \ 

Tvatsveekaaraat tarn iha kritinah sooribrindaanubhaavyam 
nityaapoorvam nidhimiva Daye ! nirvisanti Anjanaadrau (44) 

Daya Devi! The blessed, by being the recipient of your favours, 
enjoy Him like a great treasure even here on the Tirumala HIM 
Him, by seeing whom ail other pleasures get likened to a small puddle 
(as contrasted with the ocean); Him, who is satyam (Truth), gnaanam 
(knowledge), who is free from the threefold limitations, who is an 
ocean of Bliss (Ananda), who is being enjoyed by groups oi 
Nityasooris, and Who is ever new and fresh. 

The Roopa or Divyamangala Vigraha of the Lord was described 
in the previous sloka. The Svaroopa (the fundamental nature; 
nf tfift T.nrd is described in this sloka. The words employed are 



DAYAA SATAKAM 65 

The main purport of the sloka is that those whom Daya devi 
takes up for protection, are privileged to enjoy the infinite Lord 
with all His infinite qualities even while on this earth. The Upani- 
shadic " amrita iha bhavati" (He becomes immortal even in this 
world) is elaborated here. The very opening words of the sloka 
" Yasmin drishte " are reminiscent of the Upanishadic mantra 
" Tasmin drishte paraavare." They also remind one of Rukmini 
Devi's classical expression in her epistle to Lord Sri Krishna 
" roopam drisaam drisimataam akhilaartha laabham." The infinite 
Bliss that one attains by having a glimpse of the Para Brahman 
far surpasses all known pleasures. This sentiment is expressed 
by saying that all known pleasures dwindle into a very small puddle 
when set off against Brahmaananda, which is like a vast ocean. 

Goshpadatvam the state of being as small as the space occupied 
by a oow's foot. Goshpada has also come to mean the small 
quantity of water needed to fill the impression of a oow's foot 
on loose soil. Compare goshpadee krita vaaraasim sung in praise 
of Hanuman. Goshpada has thus come to signify a small puddle. 

Taittiriya Upanishad has defined the ParaBrahmam as Satyam 
Gnaanam and Anantam. The first two words of the second pada 
of this sloka are taken from there and indicate those two Para- 
brahma-lakshanas or the indicia of Parabrahman. The next epithet 
* tribhir avadhibhir muktam ' is explanatory of the significance of 
" Anantam" and indicates freedom from the three kinds of limi- 
tations, known as limitation as to space (Desa parichcheda) limi- 
tation as to time (Kaala parichcheda) and limitation as to matter 
(Vastu parichcheda). 

Next comes " Aanandasindhum "the ocean of Ananda or 
bliss This refers to the aanandamaya of the Upanishad, referred 
to in the 13th sutra of the Brahma-sutras. As the term Aananda- 
maya has been variously interpreted, (and even misinterpreted) 
by various commentators, an unambiguous word is employed 
here by the poet to show that the Parabrahman is an ocean of Bliss 
or Ananda, and not devoid of content as some will have it. Inci- 
dentally it will be noticed that whereas the body of the Lord was 
referred to in the previous Sloka as a lake or reservoir the Svaroopa 
Is indicated here to be an ocean. This sloka deals with the divyaa- 
tmasvarupa of the Parabrahman. The previous sloka dealt with 
His Divya Mangala Vigraha. 



66 DAYAA SATAKAM 

Having described the essential nature or quality of the Sup'rem 
Godhead in and by the first half of the sloka, the poet proceed 
in the latter half of it to show how that Being becomes the objec 
of enjoyment of the chosen few, even while on this earth. Her 
also the Upanishadic way of stating things is adopted. " Ih 
nirvisanti " gives the meaning of the Upanishadic words " Amrit; 
iha bhavati." 

Who are they that obtain such a lofty enjoyment even in thi 
world? The answer is furnished by the words " tvat-sveekaaraat 
kritinaha "-those blessed by your adoption of them as your choser 
favourites. They rely on you for everything and you therefor* 
bestow on them the highest bliss,-the enjoyment of celestial pleasure; 
on earth. This is indicated by the words " Soooribrindaanubhav 
yam " and " iha" Sooris are the celestials in Paraniapada o: 
Vaikunta. They are either Nityas or Muktas as shown abov( 
(Sloka 39). Brinda means a crowd or large gathering. What ii 
capable of being enjoyed by such groups is given to be enjoyec 
here (iha) by the denizens of this world. 

Nityaapoorvam points to yet another special excellence of the 
Lord. Ever new and ever fresh, He never becomes stale and sc 
every moment's enjoyment is but a prelude to the next moment's 
enjoyment. There is no satiation, though there is immense satis- 
faction. Though He is a Puraana-purusha, old personality, He 
is ever fresh. Koorattalvaan sings about this as " Sadaatanatvepi 
tadaatanatvavat " (though ever existing, fresh like one just come 
into existence). Desika has cryptically put it here as " Nityaa- 
poorvam." Apoorvam is what was not before. Eternally the 
Lord is capable of being enjoyed as one who was never before, 
but has just come into' being freshly just now. The Alvar's expres- 
sion of this sentiment is contained in the following words ^u'aiurr 
(isv>0&4su f 3uTrt s? ffff ^^ r jsy ip;S5 ?u> (from time to time, 
ever and anon, my unsatiating nectar). The neartst Sanskrit 
word to Aaraavamudam is " aasechanaka,"-ever charming, always 
drenching you in enjoyment. That is Nityaapoorva. 

The Kritinah or the blessed ones who are the recipients of 
Daya Devi's favour are thus enabled to enjoy in Anjanaadri (Tiru- 
mala) the bliss of the celestials. 

" Anjanaadrau-nidhim-iva-nirvisanti This reminds us of another 
Upanishad which describes the great Lord as a Nidhi or Treasure 



DAYAA SATAKAM 67 

Concealed underneath a place over which one walks frequently 
vithout ever being able to visualise it. It is believed that some 
are anjana (black paste known as collyrium used to adorn the eyes) 
enables one to discover such hidden treasures. Here we have 
m. Anjanaadri, a whole hill of such anjana, and no wonder people 
ret that anjana by Daya's grace and discover the great nidhi or 
reasure that is Parabrahman in the form of Lord Srinivasa. The 
Divya Mangala Vigraha of Lord Srinivasa is the anjana that helps 
>ne to discover and fully comprehend the Divyaatmasvaroopa 
)f that great Lord. This idea of the Archa form acting as an aid 
:o the discovery and realisation of the svaroopa or nature of the 
Lord, which even the srutis describe as ununderstandable in several 
places, is dealt with by Desika in sloka 28 of his Varadaraja Pancha- 
>at, where the same simile regarding nidhi and anjana is also employed. 

This and the previous sloka have postulated Parabrahman 
is having a form and as having attributes, and as capable of being 
mjoyed, a thorough contrast to the Brahman of the Advaitins, 
;vhich is nameless, formless, and attributeless in the ultimate, 
;hough on the vyaavahaaric plane names and forms and attributes 
ire conceded to that Brahman itself. 

Desika also shows here what true Jeevanmukti or the realisation 
sf the highest mokshananda is. Though that term is employed 
^nly by the Advaitins to describe the state of a released soul before 
tie sheds his body, the full meaning of the term is realised only by 
realising the state of great souls like Nammalvar who have put 
themselves in tune with the great God. By attunement to His 
will and at-one-ment with Him they become muktas even while 
living on this earth. No wonder therefore that the Alvars never 
made much of ascending to Heaven, as they made this world itself 
the highest Heaven by co-ordinating their karanas in enjoyment 
of Him. And Desika, true follower of the Alvar's cult as he is, 
boldly swore that He had no desire, speaking for himself, to go to 
Vaikunta. ' Satyam sape Yaaranasailanaatha! Vaikuntavaasepi 
na me abhilashah'. That is in Varadaraja Panchasat. He is 
going to wind up this Stotra by praying to Daya Devi to confer on 
him mokshananda here itself. That is in the hundredth sloka of 
this stotra. 



DA.YAA SATAKAM 



rm labdhvaa kamapi mahatah Sreenivasaamburaseh 
:aale kaah ghanarasavatee kaalikeva Anukampe \ 
tonmeshaa Mrigapatigirau ~visvam aapyaayantee 
'eelopagnam ksharati bhavaatee seetalam sadgmaugham w (45 

>evi Anukampa! Having extracted the excellent essence froi 
ig ocean-like Srinivasa, you shine like an array of clouds on tl 
f Simhachala (another name for Tiramala) and with the idea < 
ening the entire Universe you shower at proper times torrent! 
in the shape of cool and beneficent qualities like sauseelya. 

Iavingpostiilatedthesvaroopa,roopa, gunaetc., oftheHighe 
i is at once the Absolute of Philosophy and the God of Religioj 
:a proceeds to show how amongst those high and sublin 
ts Daya or Mercy is really of the essence of that Being, 1 
ense, the glory, grandeur and sublimity of the Lord induc< 
is devotees a sense of frustration caused by the thought < 
own lowliness as contrasted with His greatness. Very frequent 

aptto exclaim ^ijosr 43Tsiyafli_^yrjgr rsirvsr njtrir (Who is E 
vhat am I ?) My smallness is in direct proportion to His grea 

How can I ever hope to reach Him? This heart-rendir 
aas risen from many a devout heart. But the ever-kind Loi 
not allow His devotees to be seized by this sort of panic, f. 
iy conceals from them His paratva or transcendent gloi 
.ttracts them by His sauseelya, saulabhya, vatsalya and simile 
ies. This becomes possible for the Lord only because He 
yaavaan a compassionate and merciful Person, Desika vei 
xsally describes in this sloka how Daya is the quintesseru 
agavat-svarupa, and how Daya enables us to enjoy the qualiti 
auseelya that make for the redemption of human souls. 

lie sloka starts with the word " saaram " meaning essetic 
Srinivasa is like the vast and expansive sea, deep and fearfu 
:he clouds that plunge into that sea, extract fresh water ther 
rise aloft into space and hang about the crests of mountain 
ievi, who is here likened to such a cloud, extracts the essexu 



DAYAA SATAKAM 69 

f Srinivasa, rises up into space and stations herself in Simhachala. 
drigapati means the king of animals and therefore refers to a lion. 
imhachala is one of the names of the sacred Tiramala Hill. 

Kaalika is a multitude of rain-laden clouds, and gets that 
ame because of the dark colour. The analogy is intended to 
uggest that while the water in the sea, however plenty, is unfit 
3r use and consumption, the waters that come from the clouds 
rfiich drank of that very sea are veritably life-giving. In the upa- 
leya the suggestion is that Daya extracts the best essence of the 
'arabrahmasvaroopa and showers the same on us. This essence 
r saaram is referred to as kamapi saaram, a great and wonderful 
ssence. If the ocean of Srinivasa is immense, the essence derived 
herefrom by Daya is kamapi indescribably great. 

That only clouds containing water in large quantities will be 
lark is shown by the words " ghanarasavatee " and " kaalikaa." 
This cloud of Daya rains and pours in plenty only at the proper 
easons, kaale kaale, and thereby pleases the cosmos, visvam 
lapyaayantee. 

What is it that Daya rains upon men and women of the land? 
The clouds pour cool water by raining. Dayadevi rains Srinivasa" s 
jool and auspicious qualities in shoals. Before Daya blesses 
is, with all those great and auspicious qualities of the Lord, she 
irst manifests herself to us, even like the dark cloud that gladdens 
yy gathering aloft in the sky promising a down pour of rain. 

Dayadevi has been likened before to the tree, to a boat and 
K> on. Here she is likened to a cloud. As the stotra proceeds 
TO shall see her being likened to several other objects such as the 
3anges, the Yamuna, and the Sarasvati and so on. The expression 
"ksharati sadgunaugham " (pours good qualities) once again 
jmphasises the supremacy of Daya among the gunaas of the Lord. 

may safely assert that this is the central theme of Dayasataka. 



ai 



70 DAYAA SATAKAM 

Bheeme nityam bhavajalanidhau majjataam maanavaanaam 
Aalambaartham Vrishagiripaihihi tvannidesaat prayunkte \ 

Pragnaasaaram prakritimahataa moolabhaagena jushtam 

saakhaabhedaihi suhhagam anagham saasvatam sasstrapaanfm "(4^ 

For rescuing human beings who are ever sinking in the fearfi 
ocean of samsara, Lord Srieivasa, at your behest, extends the faultier 
and eternal helping-hand of Saastra, whose essence is wisdom, whic 
is by nature great, which is associated with the pranava, and whic 
is lovely on account of the several branches (scriptures). (Note tli 
absence of any address as Daye, Karune etc.) 

After having described the nature of * sreycs." the highe; 
bliss which is Parabrahman in the form of Srinivasa, Vedanl 
Desika goes on to deal with the other part of the theme vzz., taddfa 
tudaata in the second half of this decad which begins with th 
sloka. 

Like the trained elephant which affords all aid for the mahoi 
to get upon it, the Lord furnishes to us the means to attain Hir 
The first of such help is Saastrapradaana or the promulgate 
of the Saastras. Readers will remember how in sloka 18 an 
it was pointed out that Saastras are given to us like lamps to disp 
the darkness of our ignorance. In this sloka the poet adver 
to the' same topic to indicate the inner purpose of the Saastra 
Saamaanya Saastras were the Subject of that sloka, whereas he 
the Visesha Saastras are indicated. 

The purpose of creation is to afford us an opportunity f< 
redeeming ourselves from samsara; it is here pointed out how tl 
saastras help in that process of redemption. They act like the hai 
proffered to lift a man sinking in water. Here the upama is work* 
into fine details as is usual with the poet. Mortals sinking in tl 
vast and terrific ocean of samsaara are referred to as being helpi 
out of it by the proffered hand of the Lord which is Saastra 
Veda. The hand is beautiful, long, stout at the root (shouldei 
and having charming branches in the shape of fingers. In additio 
the hand is accustomed to help and so does not possess the fai 
of unhelpfulness. It is also eternal. Applying those same wor 
to the Saastras which are the upameya in the Upama, the Saasti 
are said to be pragnaasaaram having wisdom as their essen< 

with. Pranava, whi 



DAYAA SATAKAM 71 

. Just as the hand is beautiful because of its fingers, the Saastras 
are 'charniing because of their several sadkhaas or branches (tradi- 
tional recensions). Saastraas are also anagha (faultless) and 
$asmta (eternal). 

Who is it that proffers this helping hand of the Saastraas 
to beings sinking in samsaara? It is Vrishagiripati, Lord Srinivasa. 
And He does so impelled by Daya, as shown by the words tvan- 
nidesaat (by your command). Dayadevi directs the Lord to go 
to the help of suffering humanity and He does so by extending His 
hand to lift them up, thereby furnishing to them aalambam or 
support. A karaavalamba is thus the subject-matter of this sloka. 

Incidentally it may be noticed that this sloka does not contain 
any word referring to Daya by name. This sloka has to be taken 
with the next one for reasons which we shall set out there. 



cl* 



Vidvat-sevaa-katakanikahsaihi veetapankaasayaanaam 
Padmaakaantaha pranayati Daye\ darpanam te Svasaasiram i 

Leeladakshaam tvadanavasare laalayan vipralipsaam 

Maayaasaastraanyapi samayitum tvatprapannaprateepaan (47) 

Daya Devi! Lord Srinivasa, the Consort of Padma, promulgates 
two kinds of saastraas. One of them which He promulgates (in 
assoication with you) serves as a mirror to you and acts for the benefit 
of the pure-minded persons who have eschewed sinful thoughts by 
constant and intimate contact with the truly learned. It is His own 
Saastra (Sva-saastra). la your absence, however, fondling the desire 
to deceive induced by His sportive instinct, He produces MOHA- 
SAASTRAS for putting down the foes of your votaries. 

After dealing with Saastra-pradaana generally in the previous 
sloka, in the present sloka the poet refers to the Pancharatra saastra 
and the mohasaastras both of which have been promulgated by 
the Lord, and points out the difference between them. Desika 
Jms established the validity and supremacy of the Pancharaatra- 
saastra also known as Bhagavat-saastra, following his illustrious 
10 



72 DAYAA SATAKAM 

predecessor Ramanuja, who established its authoritativeness in 
the Sri Bhashya. Desika has written a treatise called Pancha- 
ratraraksha. In the opening sloka of Yatiraja Saptati he refers 
to the Lord as " Vaktaa pancharaatrasya yas-svayam" (STRT q^r- 
5?w v: ^--q ). The words Svasastram in this sloka must therefore 
be taken as referring to this paancharatra Saastra. Not only 
is it His own Saastra, but it reflects the glory and grandeur of 
Dayadevi and therefore is like a mirror (darpana) to her. This 
Saastra is devoted exclusively to the glory of Lord Srinivasa and 
it is stated here by Desika that it has been promulgated solely 
for the benefit of the pure-minded persons in whose hearts there 
is no place for sin. They are described as veotapankaasayaaha 
qtflT3>.3rM: (Persons with minds cleansed of sin). Fanka is mud 
and is indicative of sin and ignorance. How that mud is removed 
is explained by the phrase ' vidvatsevaakatakanikashaihi. 5 Kataka 
is the clearing-nut which is used for making water clear. It is 
known as 3*<^5T*/Q-'i."LliH- in Tamil. The kataka that effects 
the removal of mud and dirt in the hearts of men is referred to as 
4 vidvatsevaa ' hero. It means the worship of vidvans (the learned 
men) who have acquired true knowledge, 'nikasha' means a 
whetstone. Kataka-nikashaihi means by whetting or rubbing of 
the clearing nut. Desika points out that the surest way of dispelling 
ignorance from one's mind is to closely associate with, and follow 
in the footsteps of, the truly learned men. 

Darpanam te By referring to this Saastra as Dayadevi's 

darpana (mirror), Desika emphasises the fact that it is only this 

saastra that fully reflects Daya Devi. The Saastras referred to 

in the previous sloka are also Daya-karya or the work of Daya. 

But Daya is seen to fulfil herself only in the Pancharatra Saastra. 

Referring to Ramanuja's great works, Desika sings in his Yatiraja 

Saptati " Lakshmeekanta-sphatika-mukuro Lakshmanaaryopa- 

desaha" ^*lkF 'OTfosj-RFft ^MTon2?fa%5r: Mukura is mirror and 

Ramanuja's works are said to be the mirror reflecting truly the glory 

of Lakshmikanta (Srinivasa). It is only when Srinivasa looks into 

that mirror that He can see Himself as He is. The idea evidently 

is that His face and form get distorted out of recognition in other 

Siddhantas. Similarly the greatness of Daya devi is fully seen only in 

the Paancharatra Saastra. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 73 

o the spirit of the Vedas. They are referred to here as Maya or 
Vlohasaastras (false or deceiving saastras). How the Lord comes to 
>e the promulgator of those saastras also is mentioned in the latter 
lalf of the sloka. The Lord, it is stated, has two wives or Consorts. 
Mithah-Kalaha-Kalpanaa-Vishamavrithi-Leela-Daya-Parigrahana - 
5ankalpa Suryodaya 1-67). One is Daya and the others is Leela. 
Daya is grace and Leela is sport. Behind Daya's back and in the 
presence of Leela the Lord gives Himself up to Vipralipsa or desire 
:o deceive. In that mood He promulgates the Maya saastras. 
This is the gist of the second half of the sloka. But even here the 
Lord's protecting instinct is perceived. For, the Mohasaastras, 
:>nly result in putting down the foes of Daya's votaries, by enticing 
;hose foes away from the field of activity of the followers of Daya. 
That way, the devotees of the Lord are left alone to pursue the path 
3f saranaagati in peace, and attain the highest bliss. 

* Api samayitum ' * Api damayitum ' is a different reading. 
The meaning is the same. 



Daivaat praapte Vrishagiritatam dehini tvan-nidaanaat 

* Svaminl Paahi ' ityavasavachane vindati svaapam only am \ 
Devas-Sreemaan disati Kamnel drishtim ichhan tvadeeyaam 
Udghaatena smtiparishadaam uttarena aabhimukhyam (48). 

Devi Karuna! When a human being, as a result of casual good 
deeds done by Mm by your help, reaches the slope of the Tirumala 
Hill (by your help) happens to breathe his last, uttering (by your 
help) while in a state of mental stupor, the words * O Lord protect 
me, 5 the great God, who is Sriman, anxious to secure your (approving) 
glances, confers his favourable-ness (or presence) uttering, by 
way of reply the word (Om) which occurs at the commencement 
of all the Vedas. 

The sentimcut given expression to in Sloka 27 above is again 
dealt with here but in a different manner. It was stated there that 
those who have, takon residence on the sacred Hill obtain the grace 
of Daya by the very fact of their residence there, and that when 



74 DAYAA SATAKAM 

they are in extremis Daya gently reminds the Lord about them 
Here reference is made to a casual visitor who reaches the slope 
of the Hill by a stroke of good luck caused by Dayadcvi, ever 
watchful of human interests, and happens to die there. Day; 
makes him utter the words s svaamin, paaht* (My Lord! protect) 
The words are not uttered willingly or even consciously. It i 
as c avasavachana * a word uttered in spite of himself. To sud 
a man who dies with those words on his lips, the Lord extend 
His favour. 

4 Aabhimukhyam ' denotes presence as also a favourabl 
attitude. The Lord who confers that aabhimukhya is referred t< 
by two expressions * devaha ' and * Srimaan.' Devaha means i 
shining God. He is a Sriman eternally associated with Sri 
It is as Sriman He confers aabhimukhyam upon His votaries. 

Why does He do so? "Tvadeeyaam drishtim ichchhan,"- 
anxious to secure your (approving) looks. The desire on th< 
part of Sriaivasa to fulfil Daya's desires, do her behests, obey he 
commands, has been referred to in several places in this stotr< 
and is re-stated here in a nice way. The whole world is anxiou 
to secure the Lord's glances. The greatest men have been showj 
to long for some sort of life on the Tirumala HilJ in order to be th 
recipient of a single kataaksha from those lovely and loving eye 
(sloka 42). That Lord, in turn, is anxious to secure the lovinj 
glances of His consort DayadevL He likes it. He takes, a plea&ut< 
in it. This is indicated by the use of the word ' devaha ' tto 
sportful person. At the same time He is also Sriman. That is 
to say, Lakshmi also likes the Lord to render such help to humai 
beings and become the recipient of Daya's approval as indicated 
by her looks. 

In the Saranaagati Deepika, Desika prays to the Lord to make 
him a fit receptacle for the Lord's bounty and the Lord is requested 
thereby to qualify Himself for being the object of Lakshmi's loving 
glances. 

How the Lord gives expression to His aabhimukhyam is se 
out in the lastpaada. He promises succour to the dying man whc 
has called for His protection, by saying ' Yes.' The sacred wore 
* 3-0* OM also means ' Yes,' and expresses assent.,3^ OM is also th< 
pranava. Here Desika indulges in a very round about expression! 
to indicate Om. Instead of referring to that single letter as such 



OAYAA SATAKAM ' 7f 

he. has said that the. Lord confers aabhimukhyara by replying 
with the word " which constitutes the beginning of the Vcdas." 
That, word undoubtedly is pranava. There must be a purpose with 
which Desika refers to Oin in this manner. The Lord's assent 
to the dying man's desire for protection is backed, up by all ths 
Vedas. If His &> (yea) turns out to be false, it tamtamoumts to 
all the Yedas becoming fake and useless. 3^icf is beginning. Sroti- 
parishad is, the synod of the Vedas, 



purport of this sloka is that Dayadevi brings about a 
situation where the Lord Himself with His consort is ready to assure 
human beings of His protection. This is a step much in advance 
of the Saastrapradana, promulgation of the saastra, referred to in 
trie previous two slokas. 



- If 

Sreyassdotim sakrt apt Dayel mmmataam yas-sakheem te 
svetodaaraam alabhata janas-Sreenivaavasya drishtwi r 

Dwvawdeenaam ay am anrinataam dehavtvepi vindan 
bandhaanmukto balibhir-anaghaihi pooryate tat prayuktarhi " (49). 

Dayadevi! lhr.t being who obtains at least once the kataaksha 
of Srinivasa, which yiel^ (cau^s) beatitude* which is cool and boun- 
teous, and which is your PRIYA-SAKHI (very dear Mend), gets 
relieved of all debts which he owed to the devas and others, even while 
connected with the body; ami on Ms release from bondage (samsara) 
he is worshipped by those very devas and others who load him witk 
offerings in the diape of faultless oblations. 

The opening word of this sloka * sreyas-sootim * indicates 
the topic dealt with in this decad. The central idea of this sfoka 
is that the Lord's benign kataksha is the cause of 0ne*& attaining 
sreyas (beatitude). That kataksha is seeta (coci) and ttarrforc 
calculated to banish all taapa (heat). It is vdamra (gmeroms) aad 
it is Daya's mmmataa sMee (chosen friend and mm^mm^ 
Tfe intimacy between the Lord's kataakslm and Daya is once 
again emphasised. (See commentary on steka 42> 



76 DAYAA SATAKAM 

The recipient of that kataaksha gets released from the three- 
fold debts with which everyone is said to be born, viz., debts due 
to the sages, the gods, and the manes of the ancestors. This state 
of relief from indebtedness is attained by him even when his connec- 
tion with, the body continues. When that connection ceases the 
position gets reversed. The. very devas etc., who were propitaited 
by that being begin to propitiate him during his ascent to heaven. 
bandhaat muktaha released from all bondage, balibhihi by 
those oblations proffered by the devas etc. The word ' anaghaihi ' 
meaning blemishless used in connection with balibhihi (oblations) 
is intended to emphasise the fact that the offering is spontaneous 
and voluntary and not in expectation of repayment in one form or 
another, Pooryate is filled with. Being the recipient of the 
Lord's divyakataaksha is thus shown to make all the difference 
ia the status of a man. His indebtedness is wiped out; he becomes 
free from all liability. Not only that, but the very persons whom 
he served before begin to serve him. 

In sloka 20 above, jaayamaana kataksha was referred to. That 
is the kataaksha received by a being at the time of his birth. It 
was pointed out there that he develops a desire for moksha which is 
fulfilled without much effort on his part. Pursuing the same 
topic here the poet points out a very important stage in the progress 
of that soul blessed with jaayamaana kataaksha. The next sloka 
develops this idea. 



fqftftqfcr 



Divyaapaangam disasi Karunel yeshu saddesikaatma 

kshipram praaptaa Vrishagiripatim Kshatrabandhvadayaste i 
ViswaacharyaavidhisivamukhaaS'Svaadhikaaroparuddhaha 
/ manye maataa jada iva sute vatsalaa maadrise tvam " (50). 

Devi Karuna! Those, Kshatrabandhu and others, on whom 
you, in the form of a good Acharya, bestow divine glances, ' attain 
Lord Srinivasa very quickly, while Brahma, Siva and other world- 
teachers are hound down by their office (position). I therefore think 



~~~. JL.I1 --- *J.X_J 



DAYAA SATAKAM 77 

In sloka 48, Daya's drishti (glance) was referred to. In sloka 
\9 Lord Srinivasa's drishti was mentioned. In this sloka Divya- 
ipaanga (divine glance) has been very deftly used in such a way as 
;o bo capable of being interpreted as Lord's apaanga or as Daya's 
ipaanga, though both really are one. This kataakshabe it the 
-ord's or Daya's is bestowed by Dayadevi who assumes the form 
>f a Sat Desika, a good and pure Acharya, and bestows on us her 
>enoficient glances (or secures to us the Lord's kataaksha). It 
las bc.-^n said that the Lord's good will is one of the causes that 
iecure to us Acharya-praapti (contact with an Acharya). Acharya- 
)raapti is a sine qua non for obtaining moksha. There is a famous 
^urana sloka which says that sinners like Kshatrabandhu, as well 
is meritorious men like Pundarika, obtained moksha only by 
laving an acharya. 



So Acharya-praapti is ahetu (cause) for sreyas (bliss). This is 
;he last of the causes that contribute to one's attainment of bliss 
efcrred to in this decad. 

In the next decad Desika is going to deal with sr.racaagati 
surrender). As a prelude to it, one of the very essential concomi- 
;ants thereof, viz., Acharya Sambandha is spoken about here. 
\s the Purana sloka quoted above says, every one has to become 
in * Aacharyavaan ' possessed of an Acharya, before attaining 
noksha. The Upanishad mantra also is to the same effect 
\charyavaan purusho veda BTRRM^ 35^ %^ (Only that man 
ivho has an Acharya knows). The importance of the sentiment 
contained in this sloka cannot be overestimated.' . 

Whatever the Lord does for the benefit of humanity is attri- 
buted to Daya as being her work. 



[Taking the human form (of an Acharya) the Lord out of mercy 
rescues sinking humanity by proffering the hand of saastra). This 
deals with the Lord's assumption of Acharya-roopa or form. The 
word * Kaarunyaat ' in this sloka indicates that this is an act of 



n DAYAA SATAKAM 

Daya, And. that is why Daya is here said to have taken the fori 
of an Acharya (Desikaatmaa), 

Those who are the recipients of the * Divyaapaatiga ' attai 
Lord Srinivasa quickly (kshipram). The reference to Kshatn 
banditti shows that the poet is thinking of the sloka extracted ab\ 
land is drawing our attention to the importance of Achary* 
sambandha, by which oven great sinners are capable of attaii 
ing beatitude. (Kshatrabandhu was a great sinner, but had tl 
^QK)d fortune to come into contact with a sage who took pity c 
liirn. and became Ms Acharya, weaned him from his sinfulness, ar 
TdtiBiately secured for him everlasting bliss). 

This benefit which Daya secures to us is sought to be contrast* 
with the plight of great beings like Brahma, Siva and so on, wl 
as a result of their meritorious actions (satkarma) hold high pos 
and act as world-acharyas, jagatguras. They are tied down 
their posts and do not get release. They are themselves holdb 
acharya-posts. The poet appears to suggest here that while achary 
continue in bondage, those who rely on acharyas get released. 

IMnting of this difference, Desika txultingly thinks oft! 
measure of protection extended to us and says that Daya DC 
like all mothers is more concerned with the welfare and well-being 
deficient and mentally incapacitated children than with those 
Hie clever and capably. A mother is fond of all her childrc 
but when one of them is unable to take care of itself, her conce 
for that child makes her ever think of it and help it in all ways 
be safe and happy. So too Daya Devi the mother of all chetan; 
is more concerned with the welfare of persons like us unable 
taTce, care of ourselves and who are helpless Li the extreme. TJ 
helplessness or kaarpanya is what earns for us speedy relea 
and the next decad with Saranaagati as its topic starts with 1 
* aitikripana ' meamng exceedingly wretched and helpless. 



DA YAA SATAKAM 

SIXTH DECAD. 



dccad is :hc contrc of this stotra. There are five docads 
preceding it and four full decads and eight extra slokas 
following it. It undoubtedly enshrines the central theme of the 
Daya Sataka viz., Saranaagati. This doctrine, one may say without 
fear of contradiction, is Vedanta Desika's gift to world-thought. 
Earlier Acharyas had adopted Saranaagati as a direct means for 
the attainment of Mukti. But they had all left it to Desika to 
scientifically systematise it and propound it to the world as a sakshat- 
mokshopaaya, a dir&ct means for moksha. From Svetasvatara 
Upanishad which said " Mumukshur vai saranam aham prapadye," 
through Nammalwar who said Lj+Qs&ir*& riaaaair ^u^Qiu&r 
s_3TaTjn^.^S^p ^'f'/f^j*/ Lf(&j'i(]>&(?6vr, to Rainanuja who gavs 
to us the Saranagati Gadyam,,it was all anushtaana or practice. 
It was Deaika who first synthesised the several relevant texts and 
laid down in and by his numerous works that Prapatti or Saranagati 
is an independ ;nt and self-sufficient upaya or means. For that 
reason he is known as Trw^^cr?^jT/-f^r: ' Prapadana-kalaa- 
janma-jaladhihi ' and ^^^t'juj * ( S ^ u s &b * ^ r ?<a/^ <xsr 
That doctrine is the topic of this dccad. Prapadana-sulabhatva 
(47??r g^5r ; c() of the Lord is the subject of the sixth pattu LJ&&I of 
Tiruvoimozhi. 

The metre employed for this docad is ' Nardataka.' Thtre 
are seventeen syllables to a paada in this also. Suka-brahmam 
adopted this metre while singing the Sruti Geeta. 



11 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

npanopi janturadhigamya Dayel bhavateem 
asithiladharmasetu padaveem ruchiraam achiraat \ 
'amahormijaalam atilanghya bhavambunidhim 
bhavati Vrishachalesapadapattananityadhanee (51) 

Dayadevi! Even the most wretched and helpless being, by resorting 
>u who are like a beautiful; and at the same time strong and 
eous; bridge-way, quickly crosses the ocean of samsara full of 
inerable huge and mighty wave-groups, and attains eternal wealth 
e city of Lord Srinivasa's Feet. 

Note how the sloka begins with atikripana and ends with 
mdhanee? This change from dire distress to undiminishing 
th is what Daya alone can bring about. 

Asithila is unbreakable, unslackening. Asithila dharma is 
nagati dharma, as defined by Valmiki through Sitadevi in 
words " Viditassahi Dharmagnyaha Saranaagata Vatsalaha " 
ffMfj V 3%: SK^PR--?^: equating dharma with saranaagata- 
salya. Setu is bridge or dam across watsr. H>re Daya 
:ened to a bridge across the ocean of Samsara and even a very 
;nificant man can use the bridge and the pathway (padavee) 
ided by it to cross over. The ' amita ' (countless) and * maha ' 
and mighty) ' oormijaala ' (wave-groups) tossing in the ocean 
,ot affect him in any manner, as he uses a safr bridge far above 
waves to cross over. The* words * amitamahormijaalam ' 
nds us of * madanapavanoddhootamahormimala ' of King 
isekhara in the Mukundamaala. 

Once he goes to the other side, what is it he sees ? The great 
glorious lotus-feet of Lord Srinivasa which shine like a spacious 
glorious city padapattana. Pada is foot and pattana is city, 
inta Donka who is known for his outstanding vairagya, as 
h as for his great gnana, shunned towns and cities. But tbure 
two towns to reach which, and reside in whiqh, he Imd great 
ing. Ont is Vrishaachalesa-padapattana; and the other is 
chakravarti-pada-padma-pattana. The extra, word 'padma* 
in the case of Sri Bhashyakara speaks for itself. Desika's 
vasa Bhakti is excelled only by Desika's Ramanuja-bhakti. 

Nityadhance eternally rich man. No more the vicisstitud^s 
>rtune making a person a millionaire today and a pauper to- 



DAYAA SATAKAM 81 

after rich for ever and ever. By his good fortunt which made him 
resort to Daya as his saviour, he becomes the possessor of a vast 
and undiminishing fortune. 

ruchira meaning lovely and charming indicates the attractiveness 
of saranaagati-marga as contrasted with, the other paths which are 
difficult and troublesome. The words adhigamya and atilanghya 
are very significant. Reaching Daya means and involves crossing 
the. samsaric ocean. 

achiraatin no time. It is another very significant expression. 
Because it is only a prapanna that quickly attains mukti, whereas 
all the other upaasakaas following the karmayoga gnanayoga 
and bhaktiyoga paths have to abide their time. 



SR^fcfN 

Abhimukhabhaavasampadabhisambhavinaam bhannaam 
kvachidupalakshitaa kvachid abhanguragoodhagatihi i 

Vimalarasaavaha Vrishagireesadaye \ bhavatee 

.sapadi Sarasvateeva samayati agham apratigham.n (52) 

O Daya of Vrishagirinatha! Like the Sarasvati river, with its 
course visible in some places, and invisible yet unbroken in other 
places, and with pure rasa (water) you quickly destroy by your flow 
Ihe irremovable sins of those wallowing in samsara, who possess 
that rare wealth of being favourbly inclined towards you. 

The previous sloka ended with a reference to dhana, riches. 
This sloka starts with a sampath or wealth. It is abhimukha- 
bhdavasampath, the wealth of aabhimukya towards Daya. Though 
Daya is there ever ready to come to the rescue of the weak and 
the helpless, people do not easily take to her. Some, however, 
have the good fortune to adopt an attitude of aabhimulchya, a 
favourable and favour-soliciting disposition towards Daya. That 
is referred to here as a sampath or wealth. 

The sloka is couched in the form of a slesha for Daya and the 
river ..Saraswati. Saraswati is one of- the three rivers that 



82 DAYAA SATAKAM 

contribute to the Triveni or confluence of three rivers. But unlike 
the other two the Ganga and the Yamuna it is not visible at the 
place of sangama or union. It is antarvahini, flowing under- 
ground. The river is therefore referred to here as having a visible 
flow in places and an invisible underground current in other places. 
Fiven where the current is gooclha (hidden), it is abhangitra (unim- 
peded). It bears pure and pellucid water viinalarasaavahaa. 
Rasa is water. And it has tht power of banishing unpardonable 
sins of Hose mortals who think of it fervently. It destroys sins 
by mere aahhlmukhya or fervent and faithful attitude towards its 
purifying powers even without a bath in its waters. 

So too Daya. Her flow is also visible to some and on some 
occasions, and invisible and hidden to others and on other occasions ; 
but ever and anon she flows unimpeded and without obstacles. 
She invariably bears vimalarasa, pure and faultless affection and 
friendship towards her votaries. And in respect of those who 
put themselves in an attitude of fervour and faith in regard to her 
she wipes out their sins which are otherwise apratigha (unassailable) 

For ' bhavatee * thorc is another reading * vahasi ' meaning 
you flow. 

* Sapadi * means quickly, at once. The moment one looks up 
to Daya for protection, immediately she rushes to his rescue and 
quells his sins and defections which are obstacles to his progress. 
Note the word ' achiraat ' in the previous slqka. 

Srirnan V. V. Srinivasa lyengar who was a literary artist of 
a very high order, in addition to being a great Desika-bhakta, 
very beautifully suggested that the Sarasvatee referred to in this 
sloka will take in not only the river Sarasvati, but also Yatecsvara- 
sarasvatte, or the utterances of the great Yatiraja, Ramanuja. 
This idea has thrilled several scholars and pandits deeply learned 
in the Sri Bhashya. Every epithet in this sloka fits in with that 
great and immortal work as it does with the river and with Daya. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 83 

[pi Karunel janasya Tarunenduvlbhooshanataam 

apt Kamalasanatvam apt dhaama Vrishaadripateke\ 

"aratanmtaavasena lanute nanu te vitatihi 

parahitavarshmana paripachelimakelimatee. (53) 

Karanadevi! By spreading yourself out sportfully with the sole 
impose of bringing about the welfare of others, you confer upon 
icoplc either the status of Paramasiva adorned with the yotn*g moon, 
>r the position of being a Kamalaasana (Brahma) or Paramapada 
>f L^rd SrMvasa according to the well-marked difference noticeable 
n them . 

This sloka deals with sarva-phaia-pradatva (the capacity to 
>estow all desired fruits) of Daya to those who resort to her for 
.he realisations of their desires. Contrasting the sentiment con- 
ained in this sloka with that in slokas 41 and 42 above, one must 
:>e surprised at Desika dealing with the aspect emphasistd in this 
;loka, viz., that Dayadevi helps one to attain Brahmapada or 
Roidrapada. But Desika has to postulate the efficacy of saranagati 
is a means to all desired ends for persons who are not qualified 
:o obtain the same by normal means. One of the most important 
pramaanas (authority) in favour of saranagati as a potent upaya 
is the charama sloka of the Bhagavad Gita. It is from that sloka 
among others that Desika derives authority for the afficacy of 
Saranagati. Desika has summed tip the meaning of that sloka in 
the following kaarika which occurs in Srimad Rahasyatrayasara: 



From this it is clear that with whatever end in view one iiesorts 
to Prapatti or saranagati due to one's inability to secure the same , 
by the proscribed mtans, the Lord fulfils his desire by substituting 
Himself as the Siddhopaya in the place of the prescribed nxe.a;is, 
Thus saranagati is a means not only for mukti but for all proper 
ends. If therefore a person fixes his mind upon, the greatness of 
Mafeadeva and desires to attain that position, Dayadevi helps Mm 
to realise that desire. Her very form (varshma) is * parahita.' (VMe 
slka 26 above). So too in regard to the position of Chaturaiukha 
Brakma or Sri Vaikuntha of Lord Srinivasa. The spreasd of Daya 
knows no limitations. The word Vitati meaning spread remimds 
us of the likening of Daya to the river Saraswati and to similar 



84 DAYAA SATAKAM 

comparisons with the other rivers to follow. The word ' kel 
means sport or pastime. Daya's sport lies in conferring hita c 
others, (parahita). That the hita or good varies from person 1 
person; and from stage to stagt> in the same person; is indicated t 
the use of the word * taratamataavasena/ according to diffcrenc 

It must be noted how Desika refers to Siva and Brahma. Sr 
is described as * Tarunenduvibhushana ' (a lovable person adornc 
by the crescent moon). So too Brahma is referred to as * kamaala 
sana ' .. (the one with the lotus-stat). Not only is there a tot 
absence of any want of respect towards those high personage 
but they are also described in attractive and sweet language. 



n 

Dhritabhuvanaa Daye \ trividhagatyanukooldtarda 
Vrishagirinaaihapaadaparirambhavatee bhavatee \ 

Adviditavaibhavaapi Surasindhurivaatanute 

sakrit avagaahamaanam apataapam apaapam apt. "(5 

Dayadevi! Like the Sura-sindhu, divine river, you support (protec 
the whole world; you have also a threefold flow; you also embra 
the feet of Vrishagirinatha; even if your greatness is not understo< 
you make a person who immerses (takes refuge) in you relieved fro 
heat and sin. 

Having likened Daya to the river Saras vati in the previo* 
sloka but one, the poet proceeds to compare Daya with Gani 
and also the Yamuna, This sloka and the next have been inte 
prated by every commentator as referring to the Ganga only. Wit 
out any disrespect to those commentators I shall take leave 
point out that either this or the next must refer to the Yamun 
It is not Desika's genius to refer to only some of a group. Tl 
Ganga, the Yamuna and the Sarasvati are a well-known tri 
Further it is very rarely, if ev^r, that Desika repeats the same sen 
ment in the same manner in successive slokas. Scrutinising t] 
words employed in this and the next sloka from this view poii 



DAYAA SATAKAM 85 

. the words as referring to the Ganga. The three attributes common 
to Daya and the Ganga are: 1. Dritabhuvanaa (^fg^ll) 

*2. Trividhagatyanukoolataraa ( f^fc^Trag^fW ) and 3. Vrisha- 
girinaathapaadaparirambhavatee (i^fr^i^r^fH^racft) Dhritabhu- 
vanaa when applied to the Ganga mean:; carrying water. (Bhuvana 
means water). Applied to Daya it means protecting the world 
(bhuvana meaning the world). Trividhagatyanukoolataraa means 
favourable for the threefold flow meaning flowing in three 
regions the sky, the earth and the paatala. In regard to Daya 
it means helpful in regard to the three fold pursuits aisvarya, 
kaivalya and moksha. Daya helps an aisvaryakama (a seeker 
after wealth), a kaivalyarthi (he who runs after kaivalya or : the 
enjoyment of the individual soul alone as distinguished from the 
paramatma), and the Mokshartbi (seeker after bliss). This is 
another form of Daya's sarvaphalapradatva (capacity to confer all 
desired fruits). 

The Ganga flows from the feet of the Lord and is referred to 
here as embracing it. Dayadevi similarly takes her origin from 
- Lord Srinivasa's paada. (vide Rooda-Vrishachalapateh-paade, sloka 
18 above). 

In the second half of this sloka it is pointed out that a person 
who takes a plungs into the fountain of Daya as much as a person 
who takes a dip in the Ganga, though he may not be aware of the 
greatness and glory of Daya or Ganga, gets rid of (beat) an and 
'-rig (sin). That one phmge is sufficient is indicated by sakrit 
avagaaha. 

A knowledge of the greatness of the Ganga in regard to its 
purifying effect is not necessary for the bather, for even without 
that, by bathing in the Ganga the person feels relieved from a sense 
of heat and gets cleansed of sins. So too in the case of Daya 
though we cannot fully understand her mahimaa (greatness) still 
if we take refuge in her, she makes us free from the taapatraya 
and free from all our sins. Fire will not fail to singe the hand that 
touches it because it is not known to be fire. 

Let me now respectfully place before the reader the interpreta- 
tion of the words which will make the sloka refer to Yamuna. 
Without the Yamuna the Triveni will not be complete. The three- 
fold flow must be taken to mean the flow of the rivers needed to 
constitute a Triveni. The attribute ' paadaparirambhavatee 



86 DAYAA SATAKAM 

seems to be far more apt if it is taken with the Yamuna than 
the Ganga. * Pariramba ' is embrace. The Ganga took its 01 
from the toe of the Lord, but it has nowhere been said that 
waters of the Ganga embraced the Lord's feet; whereas the Yan 
is well-known for having frequently embraced the feet of the I 
when 'He came down as Sri Krishna. When Sri Krishna 
carried by His father Vasudeva from Muttra to Gokula, the w* 
of the Yamuna are said to have risen up and embraced the fe< 
the infant Krishna before permitting Vasucljva l"o cross it. 
the numerous occasions on which Lord Krishna had jalakr 
k the Yamuna with the Gopis, her waters lovingly embr 
the divine and lovely feet of Krishna. It was because of this C 
refers to the Yamuna as ^giru Qo^/?/r ajQp<jsw. This* attri 
inthissloka seems to indicate, beyond doubt, that the Yan 
is in the poet's contemplation. Nor is there anything ag; 
this interpretation in the third paada where the word * surasinc 
occurs. Probably there is a suggestion (dhvani) here , that 
Yamuna is a river whose glory is not (as) well-known (as the Gan; 
Surasindhu may well refer to any holy river not necessarily the Ga 
Desika has sung in one place of the Sarasvati having ths Yami 
status (Krishnaanwayena dadhateem Yamunaanubhaavam... 
Sarasvateem Godastuti). fcwrrww ^cfq qgppjtfier <cfr*f: 3 
EFTW *tSF^q $ I He is quite capable of singing of the Ganga 
" as Yamuna, I submit these considerations for what they arew< 



\\ 

Nigamasamaasrf"taa nikhilalokasamriddkikaree 
bhajadaghdkoolcanudrujagatihi paritaptdhitaa\ 

Prakatita hamsa matsya kamataadyavataarasaiaa 
Vibiidhasarichhriyam Vrishagireesa Day el ahasi 

Daya of Vrishagireesa! You possess all the glory of the Ga 
for you are praised by the Veclas ; you bring about copious and plei 
prosperity to all the worlds? your force destroys the sins (bs 
of those who praise you ; you are a source of comfort to those stri 



DAYAA SATAKAM 87 

Daya is compared to the Ganga in this sloka which is in the 
form of a slesha. 

Nigamasamaasrithaa The Ganga finch mention in the Vedas 
and Daya is dealt with in tht Vedas. 

the Ganga by fertilising tracts and irrigating millions of acre-s 
results in plentiful production and the world is thereby In possession 
of -plenty. Daya also promises and procures plenty to her votaries 
in the world. 

By strong and swift current the Ganga destroys shores and 
bunds that aro calculated to curb its flow. So too in the case of 
persons whose spiritual progress and welfare are cribbed, cabined, 
and confined by thsir sins, Daya's flow shatters those bunds and 
barriers and sets them free. 

In the Ganga thwc are several swans, fish, tortoises and hundreds 
of other such creatures. Daya is responsible for the Lord's assump- 
tion" of the form ofHamsa (swan), Matsya (fish) and Koorma (tor- 
toise), etc. Daya is responsible for these avataaras or incarnations 
of the Lord. (See sloka 35 above and sloka 82 post), and so she 
is spoken of here as publishing (prakatita) those forms which are 
numerous, sata (a hundred) bo!nj an upalakshana for numerous. 

tfra i^ri nifeiu 3 



Jagati mitamapchaa tvad itaraa tu Daye ! taralaa 

. Phalaniyamojjhitaa bhavati santapanaaya punaha 
Tvamtha nirankusaprasakanaadmbhutimatee 

vitarasi dehinaam niravadhim Vrishasaildnidhim (56) 

Dayadevi! In this world, other dayas (the mer<*y and grace of 
others except Lord Srinivasa) except yoii, are all niggardly and 
inconstant, without certainty of yielding fruit, and calculated to bring 
in pain and distress again. In this respect you alone have the support 
of untrammelled power (sakti) etc. and confer an men the boundless 
wealth of Vrishasaila, Lord Sriniflsa. 

Having compared the Daya of Sriniva n ,a with the sacred; rivers 
like the Ganga and the Sarasvati, the post proceeds to contract 
her with th@ Daya of others. Daya or compassion is possessed 
12 



8g DAYAA SATAKAM 

in some degree or other by every one. Even a man in distres 
may himself feel imbued with sympathy and compassion towarc 
another being in greater distress; but, that sort of daya helps no on< 
Compassion and sympathy must have strength and power at the; 
back to be effective. This truth is brought home to us by this sloki 

The Daya, mercy or compassion* of every one except Lor 
Srmivasa* i.e., all Dayas except the Daya in whose praise th 
stotra is sung (tvaditaraa) are productive of small fruits (mithj 
phala). They are further taralaa (fickle, unsteady and transient 
There is no certainty that they will yield even, the benefits that ai 
within, their capacity. And their gifts to the extent they go ai 
calculated to inflict pain again; for they are powerless to banis 
pain for ever. 

In your case^ however, no one can attribute any of these defec 
or shortcomings to you; for you have the glory of being backe 
up by nirankusa (unchecked and unrestrained) qualities such i 
sakti etc. (See sloka 10 above). The great gunas, gnana, sak 
etc., are your vibhuti (wealth) and contribute to your splendoi 
and magnificence. Hence your gifts are all lofty,, permanen 
certain of yielding fruit, and eschew all possibility of sorrow ar 
pain ever recurring. Therefore you are able to confer &rf yv\ 
votaries the great bliss which is that nidhi situate in, Tirumala- 
Lord Srinivasa. 

This sloka may be said to be an elaboration of Nammalwai 
<glj<SLi(njGrT))<s8r ^(^(swjLmsba}, The Daya of Lord Srin 
vasa is the only Daya the other Dayas are really not Dayaas ; 
all. Unless one obtains this nischita buddhi, definite knowledg 
he is likely to waver, and his faith in the Lord's Daya will not be 
strong and steadfast one. It is really this faith that impels Da? 
to take up the task of protecting us. 



Sakarmalaukikaprabhuparigrahanigrahayoh 

niyatim upaadhichakrapanvrittiparamparayaa i 



BAYAA SATAKAM 89 

Karuna of Vrishagireesa! Those who have carefully looked 
into the matter and noticed that the favours and frowns of the lords 
of this world are conditioned by (due to) the rotating causes in the 
nature of friendliness or hostility (towards them),, they will not entertain 
any doubts about you whose greatness is measured (dealt with) by the 
Vedas. 

Having dealt with the uniqueness of Daya, the poet now procee- 
ds to show that no reasonable man can ever come to doubt her 
powers of protection. Do we not see about us that the great 
and rich men of this world (laukikaprabhus) imbued by sympathy 
and grace (sa-karuna) shower benefits on those of their followers 
who act in accordance with their wishes, expressed and unexpressed, 
and do we not also see those prabhus frown upon, renounce and 
punish 4hose that act against their directions and inclinations? 
In other words, the favours and frowns of those lords of this world 
are the result of aanukoolya (favourableness, friendliness), and 
praatikoolya (hostility) respectively, in the persons rewarded nr 
^punished. With the change in the cause (upadhi) the result too 
varies. Aanukoolya or praatikoolya is said to come up alternating 
as in the whirling of a wheel (chakraparivritti) 

By a proper study and analysis of, and reflection on, the ways of 
the worldly lords, we thus come to definitely understand the fore- 
going, viz., that protection follows aanukoolya (favourableness) 
and punishment follows praatikoolya (hostility); of course the 
master (prabhu) must have karuna in his composition. He must be 
,a sa-karuna; else he will never know what protection or 
reward is. 

If that is the manner in which a lordly person with karuna 
acts, how can any one doubt the power of Karuna herself to protect 
those who bear aanukoolya and aabhimukhya towards her? Visa- 
yaha(fOT J -':) doubt, katham bhavitaa (<$* WIT) how 
can it arise? Your fame and glory is dealt with by the Vedas. 
The laukika nyaya or worldly rule is sure to be more correctly 
applicable to the Vedic aspect borne by you. This question is really 
an answer to the doubt that some may entertain about Daya's 
willingness to come to our rescue. How can we expect Daya who 
never evinced any interest in us all these ages on ages suddenly 
come to our rescue ?so one may feel. The answer is furnished 
by this sloka. All these ages or years you never thought of the 



90 DAYAA SATAKAM 

Lord's Daya; you nsver .looked up to her for help. So you 
not protected. Now that you have learnt of hsr greatness 
goodness and have appealed to her for help, she takes care of yo\j 
and protects you. 

That she has the capacity to protect us has been establishes) 
by several previous slokas including the last one. That she wil] 
certainly be inclined to protect us if we look up to her is shown i^ 
this sloka by reference to worldly conduct. 



Vmhagirikrishnameghajanitaam janitaapaharaam 

' > tvadabhimatlm suvrishtirn upajeevya nivrittatrishaha t 
Bahushu ja/aasayeshu bahumaanam apohya Day el 

Na jahati satpatham jagathi chatakavat kritinaha (58) 

Daya Devi! The blessed ones who depend entirely on the gocci 
showers (rain) in the shape of your good will, having its origin in the 
dark cloud that has its seat on Vrishagid, and having the capacity 
to do away with the heat engendered by birth (and death), have theii 
thirst quenched, and like the chaataka bird give up all thought oj 
tanks and reservoirs in the world, and never stray from the good patt 
(akasa). 

Having established in- and by the previous sloka that Daya is 
sure to bestow her favours on those who resort to her, Desike 
proceeds in this sloka to mention the benefits derived by those whc 
depend on Daya. As usual he resorts to upama. The chaatato 
is a bird which depends solely on rain water for quenching its thirst 
It is said that there is a hole in its throat which prevents it fron 
drinking from ponds ai*d pools with its beak down. It has its 
- mouth open, always lifted upwards and opened wide, so that whei 
the rain falls, the rain water gets into its body. The devotee o] 
Daya is compared to that chaataka bird. 

In sloka 45 Daya was likened to the clouds drawing watei 
from Srinivasa, the water of Grace, and showering it on her devotees 



DAYAA SATAKAM 91 

is clouds hold water, this cloud is full of Karuna. This description 
ecollects to one's mind Bhoja's beautiful description in tlu Champu 
Ramayana: 



Desika has adopted this in the Hamsasandesaalso where h? sings 



In the Tattva Teeka D@sika refers to the Lord of Kanchi as " Karisai- 
la Krishnajaladaha kaankshitavarshee " $f?$f5^ 6 ncr^: q?f|fcraqf 
and in the same strain sings in the Yatiraja Saptati " Karisaila 
Kri >hnajaladaha K aankshaadhikam varshati." w 



Here it is Vrishagiri Krishna Megha. From that megha 
comes down a suvrishti (g-?m) (good and helpful downpour), 
not ativrishti (sr%^fe) excessive downpour, nor maavrishti 
(ar^T'J%) no downpour at all. It is Janitaapahara, it dispels the 
taapa of samsara (birth and death). It consists in your (Daya's) 
abhirnati (^fvwfe) or prasada (favour). This is the sole support 
and sustenance to the kriti (blessed person) even as rain water is to the 
chaataka bird. By drinking in this grace of Daya/the kritinaha 
(blessed and fortunate persons) become niwittatrishaha ([ W? 1 ^;) 
relieved of thirst. Thereafter they do not descend or condescend 
to look at the several jalaasayaas (SRSIOTI:) water reservoirs, like 
tanks,, lakes or even rivers. "..."." 

And they soar in space and never swerve from the- path 
of rectitude (satpatham). Vedanta Desika is never tired 
of emphasising the need for right conduct. He can never bring 
himself to condone lapses from moral conduct at any stage in life. 
After prapatti or saranagati is gone through, there is -a tendency 
in the prapanna or saranagata to feel free from the " shackles of 
right conduct." The last paada of this sloka shows that such a 
tendency in the prapanna should be curbed and he must never 
swerve from the right path. 



0AYAA SATAKAM 



an f 



Tmdudaya-toolikaabhimmwia Vrishasallajiisha- 
stlrachara silptnaiva partkalpita chttradhiyaha i 

'Yatipatiyaamunaprabhitayaha prutayunti Daye 

jagati hitam nanastvayl bhamnvasanaadadhikam 

Daya Devi! That Mug among ascetics (Ramanoja) and Y 

charya, and others like them, who had their beautiful (fi 

jHcdiirdcetdhed'Inr tUn great painter residing in Vrishasalla (11 

'With ^otpacity to paiat Immovable (unmovlng) as well ts 
Amoving) 'objects with the help of His (Painter's) brush d 
'(thelquid paint that is) you* have laid that there Is a 

or more potent means (for salvation) than surrender to |ott, 

A very beautiful sfoka as lofty in Its poetry as in Its a 
The central idea contained in this sioka h that this Si 
has been laid down to be the easiest and safest of \ 

by great acharyas. Two of them are mentioned byname* 
and Yaainuna. The rest are Indicated by the ** etc,** (prabn 
'Yatipati or chief among Sanyasins is of course the S 
'TOva Acharya Raraamija (10171137 A.D.) author of thi 
Sri lhashya (commentary on the Brahma Sutras). Y 
Ramanuja f s preceptors* (he had five of them) preeeptoi 
more popularly ! teown as Alavandar among Vatshnavai 
was the graudsom of Nathamuni t the first of the 
Saint Satakopa (Nammalwar) in the heirarchy. In Wi 
.Btotra Ratoa Alavanudar has of Sanin;u>afi in 
:Ramaixiija ias .referred to Saraniiguii w the only 
mtmg ,the Aonl's toart ! taMaran 

(flpft*rt wawiirta^) and has shown in and by his S 
/Qadp (another work of Ms) the efficacy of Saranaa; 
direet means df salvation, As Raraattuja m mentioned' 
then Ywnuna, sand tte word etc., follows, we have to ta 



DAYAA SATAKAM 91 

Why should so much importance be attached to, their ideas 
and sentiments and conduct? The answer to that question, is, 
furnished by the first two lines of the sloka where it, is pointed 
out that they are persons specially blessed by the Lord with know- 
ledge and insight. This is described in a remarkably artistic manner 
by resort to the analogy of one of the arts the art of painting. They 
are exceptional men because their minds intellects have been 
shaped by the Lord Himself. They are Chitra-dhiyaha, men with 
beautiful intellects, painted or sketched by the Lord Himself, that 
Lord who has, His seat in Yrishasaila, the Tirumala HilL He is-, 
referred to as a silpi or painter. Unlike ordinary painters who can- 
paint and reproduce on canvas only static and immovable objects 
this Painter can paint not only such Stira objects but also chara 
(moving) objects. He is thus a, stira-cham-silpi painter of b0t&; 
kinds of objects,. mobile as well as static. He it was thai sketched: 
the beautiful intellect of those acharyas. So they are not. capable 
of error or ignorance. The word " parikalpita " shows, the* extra; 
love and care that the Lord must have bestowed, in shaping- and! 
sketching their intellects. 

The opening words of the sloka point to yet another and a 
very important, and, significant reason why those acharyas* upadesa 
and anushtana are worthy of acceptance by all right thinking men. 
They are, Tvat-udaya-toolikabhihi which, govern the word- " pari- 
kalpita,*' Toolika is the painter's brash, that with which, he sketches, 
on the canvas. Here the brush used by this Silpi (Lord Srinivasa) 
is one which exhudes Daya. Udaya is dawn, appearance. At 
the tip of the toolika (brash) there is Daya' with which the mindk of 
those acharyas have been sketched. In other words Daya is the 
paint, the wat^r colour that is utilised to sketch the hearts of those 
great acharyas. 

The full beauty and significance of the language employed 
in this sloka and the sentiment enshrined ini it can be understood 
only if we remind ourselves of another sloka of this poet, (the 
ninth sloka in the 1st Canto in his beautiful kavya, Yadhavabhyu- 
dhaya) at the beauty and suggestiveness of which the great Appayya 
Deekshita was himself very much struck. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 



Tvadudaya-toolikaabhiramuna Vrishasattajusha- 
stirachara silpinalva parikalpita chitradhiyaha \ 

Yatipatiyaamunaprabhitayaha pmtayanti Daye 

fagati hftam nanastvayi bharanyasanaadadhikam 

Daya Devi! That king among ascetics (Ramanuja) and Yaai 
charya, and others like them, who had their beautiful minds (inte 
nicely sketched by this great painter residing in Vrishasaila (Tirui 
with ^capacity to paint immovable (unmoving) as well as me 
Amoving) objects with the help of His (Painter's) brush dip 
(the liquid paint that is) yoty have laid down that there is notgi 
or more potent means (for salvation) than surrender to you, 

A very beautiful sloka as lofty in its poetry as in its sentin 
The central idea contained in this sloka is that this Sarani 
has been laid down to be the easiest and safest means of salva 
by great acharyas. Two of them are mentioned byname, YartS 
and Yaamuna. The rest are indicated by the " etc." (prabrutayd 
Yatipati or chief among Sanyasins is of course the great SrPfa 
nava Acharya Ramanuja (1017 1137 A.D.) author of the fain 
Sri 'Bhashya (commentary on the Brahma Sutras). Yaaraim 
Ramanuja's preceptors* (he had five of them) preceptor. Hi 
more popularly 'known as Alavandar among Vaishnavaites, i 
was the grandson of Nathamuni, the first of the acharyas i] 
Saint Satakopa (Nammalwar) in the heirarchy. In his farm 
BMra Ratoa Alavandar has suii^ of Saranagati in several plac 
-Ramauiuja has .referred io Saranagati as the only meaas ofxaj 
<the iLord's heart Tat-vaseekaranam tat-saranagatin 
Hf^W^B) and has shown in and by his Saranag 
Qadya (another w^ork of 'his) the efficacy of Saranaagati m 
direct means df salvation. As Ramanuja is mentioned ifirst<a 
then Yaamuna, /and the word etc., follows, we have to take it ti 
the poet is thinking of learlier acharyas like Nathamtmigal M 
Nammalwar. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 91 

Why should so much importance be attached to their ideas 
and sentiments and conduct? The answer to that question, is, 
furnished by the first two lines of the sloka where it is pointed 
out that they are persons specially blessed by the Lord with know- 
ledge and insight. This is described in a remarkably artistic manner 
by resort to the analogy of one of the arts the art of painting. They 
are exceptional men because their minds intellects have been 
shaped by the Lord Himself. They are Chitra-dhiyaha, men with 
beautiful intellects, painted or sketched by the Lord Himself, that 
Lord who has , His seat in Vrishasaila, the Tirumala Hill. He is 
referred to as a silpi or painter. Unlike ordinary painters who can 
paint and reproduce on canvas only static and immovable objects 
this Painter can paint not only such Stira objects but also chara 
(moving) objects. He is thus a, stim-cham-silpi paintfer of both; 
kinds of objects, .mobile as well as static. He it was that sketched: 
the beautiful intellect of those acharyas, So they are not. capable 
of error or ignorance. The- word " parikalpita " shows; the extra; 
love and care that the Lord must have bestowed, in shaping and! 
sketching their intellects. 

The opening words of the sloka point to yet another and a 
very important and. significant reason why those acharyas* upadesa 
and anushtana are worthy of acceptance by all right thinking men. 
They are Tvat-udaya-toolikabhihi which govern the word " pari- 
kalpita." Toolika is the painter's brush, that with which he sketches, 
on the canvas. Here the brush used by this Silpi (Lord Srinivasa) 
fe one which exhudes Daya. Udaya is dawn, appearance. At 
the tip of the toolika (brush) there is Daya^ with which the mindk of 
those acharyas have been sketched. In other words Daya is the 
paint, the water colour that is utilised to sketch the hearts of those 
great acharyas. 

The full beauty and significance of the language employed 
in this sloka and the sentiment enshrined ins it can be understood 
only if we remind ourselves of another sloka of this poet, (the 
ninth sloka in the 1st Canto in his beautiful kavya, Yadhavabhyu- 
dhaya) at the beauty and suggestiveness' of which the great Appayya 
Deekshita was himself very much struck. 






94 DAYAA SATAKAM 

.There also Lord Srinivasa referred to there as Sreem 
is described as a painter, the sole and unaided painter of this cos 
The brush He employs in the painting is Kreeda (sport) anc 
paint, Kripa, i.e., Daya. The suggestion is that though I 
and Daya are both responsible for creation, Daya is the sha 
and potent force, not leela or sport. In the painting we do no 
the painter or the brush used by him; we see only the paint uti 
to sketch the several objects painted. So too in creation it is I 
that is the shaping power and not sport, though no doubt it h 
part in the process of creation. Whereas the YadhabhyudJ 
sloka refers to the painting of the entire cosmos, this Daya Sa 
sloka refers only to the painting of the minds of the great achai 
There is a total absence of Leela or sport in this painting. 
sloka 47 above we saw how Daya is responsible for the Lc 
production of helpful shaastra and Leela for binging out decq 
shaastras. So too in ordinary creation where there is a mto 
of sport or ieela with Daya or mercy, we find good and bad-m 
together- But where Daya alone is, or prevails, nothing but 
mixed good will result. There is no scope for Rajas and Tamas 
it is pure Satva. This is the excellence attributed to the inte 
of the great acharyas. They are therefore able to think out 
expound truth unaffected by contact with ignorance, confos 
and such other imperfections that intellect is prone to. T 
Siddhanta or tteory is therefore free from all blemish and de 
and must be followed by others. 

What is their conclusion? It is that in this world -the* 
no greater or more potent means of realising one's desires 1 
seeking the help of Daya by surrendering ourselves to her in thoi 
word and deed and placing ourselves unreservedly in her able 
loving hands. 



Mrudu hridayel Dayel M?i(tata-kama-hite\ mahitel 

Dhritavibudhel budheshu vitataatmadhurel madhureh 

Vmhagiri Saarvabhautna Dayitel mayi te mahateem, 
Bha vukanidhe ! nidhehi bhavamoolaharaam lahareem 



DAYAA SATATLAM fS 

(1) Soft-hearted (2) Daya Devil (3) eyerwatciiiiliif tlie intensity 
of those who lave quelled and siiMued sense-desires, (4) celebrated 
by one and all, (5) supporter of the true gnanis, (6) entrusting your 
protecting burden to the great and learned ones (7) sweet by nature 
(S) wer beloved of that grat Emperor of VrfehagM; and (9) store 
house of all anspicionsness! pray lum towards me your immense 
flood capable of uprooting sainsara (life and death). 

Having talked about the efficacy of Saranagati and the part 
that Daya Devi plays in regard to this safe, certain and efficacious 
means of gaining one's desired end, Vedanta Desika in this sloka 
adopts that upaya (means) by praying to Daya to do away with 
his Samsaric ties, release him from the bondage of samsara (bhava) 
TPT. This is the sloka in and by which Desika seeks refuse 
In Daya. In contains the nyasa or Saranagati the chief part of 
it, Icnown as the angl The five angas or essential component 
parts are found distributed in the slokas of this decad thus; 

Sloka 52 and 57 Aanukoolya Sankalpa 

Sloka 57 Pratikoolya varjama 

Sloka 56 and59 nmhaaTisvaasa 

Sloka 51 Kaarpanya 

Sloka 60 Goptrutva varana as well as the angi Saranagatl 

This is the last sloka <af this decad. Here again we see Desika 
following Nammalwar closely. It was by the last verse of the sixth 
usi pattu that Nammalwar performed prapatti at the Feet of 
Lord Srimivasa of Tiruvengadam. That verse is as follows: 



Tiru. VL X. 10. 

The Alw;ar's verse is addressed to the Lord of Timvemgadam 
1J&&QaijsiauJi&rrG6sr). Desika's sloka is addr^s^d to Daya 
Devi. There four other Sambodanaas (addresses m the vocatm 
case) for Tiruvengadathan. Here there are eight other sambodanas 
to Daya Devi; inclwiing Daye! (nine). 

(1) MruduJmidayeJ Soft-hearted ! This is the essease of Daya. 
She is always compassionate and sympathetic (as one of feer names 
13 



96 DAYAA SATAKAM 

Anu-kampa denotes) and her heart melts at the sight of pain ai 
distress suffered by others and she rushes to their relief. 

(2) Daye! The usual address in this stotra. 

(3) Mrldita-kama-hite! Kama is desire, desire for world 
pleasures. Mridita-kaamaas are those who have crushed ar 
quelled such desires. Daya takes charge of the true welfare (hit 
of such persons and so she is addressed here as Mridita-Kam 
hite! Those whose hita or true welfare she has at heart are thoi 
who have crushed desires, and not those whom desires have crushei 
The term Mridita-kama reminds us of the a-kaama-hata of tl 
Anandavalli of Taittriyopanishad. Several gradations of ana,ida < 
bliss are talked of there in geometrical progression starting fr'oi 
human ananda and ending with Brahmananda. But immediate' 
after naming each particular ananda there is a refrain run.niti 
through this part of that Upanishad to the effect that that pleasure c 
ananda pertains also to a Shrotriya who is an akamahatl 



The word akaamahata means one who is not destroyed b 
Kama. The Upanishad does not say a-kama, desireless, bi 
akaamahata, not killed by desire. Desire there must be, but notfo 
the small and evanescent pleasures yielding parimita-phalas (vid 
sloka 39 above). Desire for them will end in naasa ffisr or destruc 
tion. The Kama must be for the Lord Himself. TWc*?rc>T* : fcR^R 
g 3nTm??T&-Oiie who has a desire for Paramatma will have no desir 
for^other things i.e., will have quelled and subdued all those othe 
desires. And thus he becomes a mriditakama whose wfelfar 
Daya looks after. 

(4) Mahite.! means honoured, esteemed, revered, renowned 
This whole Stotra must be taken, -to be explanatory of this term. 

(5) Dhrita-vibudhe! supporting the truly learned! Those whc 
are truly learned have postulated that there is no greater and poten 
force for their protection than Daya Devi. And Daya Devi IT 
her turn supports and protects such persons without putting their 
to the necessity of shifting for themselves. 

(6) budheshu-vitata-aatma-dhuirelyou who have spread om 
your burden of protection with (or among) the wise acharyas! 
This is a very beautiful epithet employed by Desika to indicate 
that Daya Devi entrusts the safety and protection of those who 



DAYAA SATAKAM 97 

to her for help and succour., to the great Acharyas who are 
of the Lord, so beloved as to make Him refer to them in 
gavat Geeta as His Atma, (gnanee-tu-atmaiva-me-matam) 
very dear to Him (Sa-cha-mama-priyaha). The gnani of 
ta is here referred to as Budaha (5'^:). Their greatness 
.cated in the previous sloka by the words Vrishagiri-jushah- 
Lra-silpinaiva-parikalpita-chitra-dhiyaha. As they are reposi- 
f Daya's protective qualities, ordinary men and women 
*ely on them for redemption . This is known as the Acharya- 
>rm of Saranagati. 

Madhure! Sweet! By nature Daya Devi is sweet and 
e, even as a mother is to the baby. 

Vrishagiri-sarvabhauma-dayite! Beloved of the Emperor 
iagiri! Daya is one of the Consorts of Lord Srinivasa. 
een said before, that the other Consorts like Sri, Bhoo and 
)evis are dear to. the Lord because the Lord sees Daya 
, in them. (Sloka 36). 

Bhavuka-nidhe ! Storehouse of all mangalam (auspicious- 
The very first description of Daya in this Sloka was as an 
aa-nidhi (treasure-he use for the helpless). That nidhi or 
is here pointed out to be a bhavuka-nidhi, a treasure of 
usness. 

er having thus called Daya in nine different ways, Sri Desika 
:nown to her his prayer in the words " mayi-te-mahateem- 
oola-haraam-lahareem-nidhehi,"-pray divert towards me 
ghty floods capable of uprooting this great tree of Samsara. 
to say, please destroy my connection with Samsara and 
>n me the beatitude of the Highest Bliss. The nature and 
tent of 'that Bliss have already been described in detail in 
i decad. 

is the sixth decad of this Stotra concludes with the perfor- 

>f prapatti by Desika even as the sixth Centurmm of Verse 

tnalwar's Tiruvoimozhi ends with the Alwar's aniishtaana 

2) of prapatti. The effect of this anushtana or practice of 

is seen in the following decads. The twofold aspect of 

that Daya renders to prapannas, v/z., Anishta-nivritti and 

aapti (Removal of undesired fruits and realisation of desired 

ispectively) is described in detail in the succeeding decads. 



96 DAYAA SATAKAM 

' Anu-kampa denotes) and her heart melts at the sight of pain z 
distress suffered by others and she rushes to their relief. 

(2) Daye! The usual address in this stotra. 

(3) Mridita-kama-hite! Kama is desire, desire for worl 
pleasures, Mridita-kaamaas are those who have crushed a 
quelled such desires. Daya takes charge of the true welfare (hj 
of such persons and so she is addressed here as Mridita-Kac 
hite! Those whose hita or true welfare she has at heart are tb< 
who have crushed desires, and not those whom desires have crush- 
The term Mridita-kama reminds us of the a-kaama-hata of 1 
Anandavalli of Taittriyopanishad. Several gradations of anaada 
bliss are talked of there in geometrical progression starting frt 
human ananda and ending with Braihmananda. But immediati 
after naming each particular ananda there is a refrain nin^ni 
through this part of that Upanishad to the effect that that pleasure 
ananda pertains also to a Shrotriya who is an akamaha 



The word akaamahata means one who is not destroyed 
Kama. The Upanishad does not say a-kama, desireless", t 
akaamahata, not killed by desire. Desire there must be, but not f 
the small and evanescent pleasures yielding parimita-phalas (vi 
sloka 39 above). Desire for them will end in naasa STIST or destru 
tion. The Kama must be for the Lord Himself. qwc^^i)^ : f^^ 
.arooTirJTfr-Oiie who has a desire forParamalma will have oo.desi 
for other things i.e., will have quelled and subdued all those otfa 
desires. And thus he becomes a mriditakama whose w.felfa. 
Daya looks after. 

(4) MahiteJ means honoured, esteemed, revered, renowne< 
This whole Stotra must be taken -to be explanatory of this term. 

(5) Dhrita-vibudhe! supporting the truly learned! Those wi 
are truly learned have postulated that there is no greater and potei 
force for their protection than Daya Devi. And Daya DevP'j 
her turn supports and protects such persons without putting Mltfl 
to the necessity of shifting for themselves. 

(6) budheshu-vitata-aatma-dhuire ! you who have spread 01 
your burden of protection with (or among) the wice acharyas 
This is a very beautiful epithet employed by Desika to indical 
that Daya Devi entrusts the safety and protection of those Wh 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

SEVENTH DECAD. 

N this dccad the poet demonstrates the several ways in whicl 
Baya Devi brings abcnit the safety and welfare of those wh@ 
take refuge m her and rely on her entirely for their spiritual 
safety and protection. Anishtathe BBdesired results and advene 
effects are done away with by Daya. She strives to achieve that 
end in several different watys. Daya'& supremacy in action i& 
very weU brcght out in this* decad. The Lerd was demonstrated 
by Naaimaiwar in the, seventh patthu (o^jp) of his TinLvoieaoidu 
as an Anishta-Vidhvamsa-seelaha (^fp^s T^mfa:). Daya De^i 
is here shown by Desika to be even cleverer and more consummate 
than the Lord Himself in destroying the devotee^s unwished-for 
evil fruits. 

The metre employed is 'Sikharini'. As already mentioned 
this is also a samavritta with seventeen syllables in each paada. 
In at least five out of the ten slokas of this decad (62 and 66 to 69) 
the word 'Siihari 1 can be seen to occur. The only other place 
in this stotra where Vrishaba-siBiari occurs is sloka 35. 



Akooparairekodhaka samaya vaithamdika javaihi 

Amrvaapyam kshipram kshapayitum aridhyaakhyabadabaam 
Knpel tvam tattadrk pratima Vrishapratvee dhampatihi 

Swaroopa dvaigunyadrigum n^bindu pravahasi u (61) 



DAYAA SATAKAM ft 

EJripa Devi! You flow in abundance (even Ike a flood). ETCH 
ne drop of you which is four times as great and as potent as the Swa- 
i>opa (or essential mature) of that gieat Lord of Vrishaatdiala!, whose 
neatness is beyond human understanding, is sufficient to qpiicklf 
uench that great fire known as avidya wMeh is unquenchable, even 
ke the sub-marine fire (badabaaaala) which the vast waters of the 
even seas, seas, which join together during pralaya (when the world is 
ne sheet of water), with as great force and speed as those of the 
ointless wrangling arguments (of a class of controversialists known 
s vitandavaadlns), are uncble to quench. 

In the previous sloka reference was made to Daya*s mahatee- 
havamoola-haraa-laharee, or the great and mighty samsara- 
:estroying flood. The rd:a runs into this sloka and that laharee 
v flood of Daya is set off against the great floods caused by the 
aeeting of the seas during pralaya, when the entire cosmos is 
nveloped in water. It is pointed out that one drop of the flood 
if Daya. is able to accomplish, what the entirety of that huge flood 
.uring pralaya i& unable to* achieve. Water has the capacity to 
t uench fire. But there is a fire within the sea, a sub-marine fire 
nown in Hindu Mythology as the Badaba (also Vadaba) anala. 
t is so called as it is supposed to have the face of a vadaba or mare. 
Chough it is within the sea it is never put out or quenched by the 
waters of the sea. On the other hand it feeds on water as if water 
rare fuel and for that reason is abiudaiHa SffipsR, When all 
fete seas rncei in pralaya even then thfe fire is itot quenched. This 
* wfeal is referred to m the first half of this sloka. 

Ekodaka-samaya; the time when it is. all water, i.e~ 9 Pralaya. 
IfcooparaiRi by the seas. The speed and force with which the 
eas mingle at the time of pralaya are indicated by a very appro- 
iriate simile. That speed and that force, aie compared to the 
peed aj!<4 the force with which words fLow from the mouths of 
fithamtdlaa-vaadins during argumentations. A vithandaavaadiH OF 
r ai*andika is one who is out to* indulge in captious arguments 
rad destructive criticism. He is not bothered with the establish- 
raent of any Siddhanta 0r conclusion. He has, none of his own, 
a een if ie has one, he does not care for it. All that he is anxious 
o* feing about i& a volume of words calculated to counter and 
KppQSft the opponent's, viewpoint He drowns hiinself y and intends 
^ dtrnwn Em ftwwnmeiits. i a maze of Bonder ou& and highsousding 



100 DAYAA SATAKAM 

compared to the waters of the seas surging with the same 
of force or vehemence at the time of pralaya. There a 
waters do not pause to submerge only the good things < 
the bad things of the world. They submerge every thing,- 
bad and indifferent. Vedanta Desika's contempt ior this 
argumentation is very pointedly noticeable here. 

Just as ignorance is not dispelled by the empty and 
argumentation of the Vaithandikat, the sub-marine fire is noi 
ched by the seas in spite of their force and vehemence, 



The central theme of the sloka is that the avidya 
quenchable otherwise is easily dispelled by Daya. Or, 
the sloka its full import, avidya (here it means Karma) 
Lord is unable to put an end to, is very effectively wiped < 
Daya. : 

This idea is mentioned in the second half of the sloka. R 
may remember how in sloka 13 ante, it was said that the 
placed Lord Srinivasa was submerged in the flood of Daya* 
sloka elaborates the idea and postulates that Daya is bigger 
the Lord Himself. 

The true nature (swaroopa) of the Lord is such that 1?e 
saying that it is that, and it is this, no one can really fully or w 
comprehend it. As Tondaradippodi Alwar has put it in the 
maalai Giu(<siJb ^<ssr^j SL.mf)"(s^rr^n"^ and <si/<swr/s/S) ,, 
fjft($uu&G)60rrQ), ($u&&<!T<5yr ^GU&tfsmGL^rr? (His greatity 
beyond comprehension. Beyond merely worshipping Him 
we ever talk of Him?) That is His greatness. The word Brain 
itself signifies big, vast. ' 

Take that swaroopa. Multiply it by two. Then again mtll 
that product by two. That, if you can really comprehend i 
equated with a drop of Daya. In other words a drop (tola 
of Daya is equal to four times the dimension of the Lord's sward 
The sloka however does not say four times, but says twice its do9 
a rather quaint way of referring to four. One is remmdec 
AndaPs fiF%wr(p (twice two) in the closing verse of Tiruppa 
Infinity doubled is infinity. Infinity quadrupled is also infill 
But one stands aghast at the immensity of the quadrupled infill 
At once it. is pointed out that a drop of Daya is equal to that qu 
rupled infinity. And we are left to imagine what a flood of D 




DAYAA SATAKAM 1\ 

\ X 

ill come to or be like on this scale. Can the gre'^ne^and immen- 
ty of Daya be dealt with in a better or a more 

It is not mere poetry but a great truth. 
is that has to come to our rescue and unless it is so big and i in- 
tense, she cannot consume our (Karrna) sins. The nature of 
ur sins was pointed out in sloka 34 above. Daya has got to be 
lat immense to drown our sins. 

There is &paata or rendering for the last word as * prabhavasi ' 

nreftr) which means * you are capable or competent (to effectuate 

le destruction of avidya). But the word pravahasi adopted here 

more apt and significant in view of the previous sloka and the 

ther words in this sloka. (61). 



'ivitsaavetalee vigamaparisuddhepi hridaye 

Patupratyaahara prabhrutiputapaaka prachakltaaha i 

r amantastvaam Narayanasikhari kootasta karunel 

Ninuldha tvadrohaa nnpathuta neetim na jahati. n (62). 

Karuna of the Lord of Naarayanaachala! Even those who have 
irified their hearts by driving out the she-demon of endless desires, 
sing afraid of the arduous process of Bhaktiyoga, which involves 
iving to go through fire by undergoing the hard discipline of con- 
oiling the senses and so on, pay their obeisance (resort) to you, 
*;, surrender themselves unto you. Thereafter they eschew all 
eachery and malevolence towards you, and do not give up (i.e., 
ley follow) the rule of the King's son, heir to the throne. 

As Saranagati had been adopted and practised in the sixth 
scad, this next decad sets out the uttarakrltya 3f^F$zr or the 
Dnduct during the post-prapatti period of a prapanna's life. Several 
irdinal doctrines that a prapanna ought to know and adopt are 
Jt out in this and succeeding decads. 

The first half of the sloka explains why even those who have 
sen able to subdue their desires for earthly objects such as wealth 
ad sexual pleasures seek refuge at Daya's feet. The first line of 
le verse describes the process by which purity of heart is sepured 



100 DAYAA SATAKAM 

compared to the waters of the seas surging with the same amoiu 
of force or vehemence at the time of pralaya. There also tl 
waters do not pause to submerge only the good things or onii 
the bad things of the world. They submerge every thing, goo* 
bad and indifferent. Vedanta Desika's contempt for this sort, < 
argumentation is very pointedly noticeable here. 

Just as ignorance is not dispelled by the empty and nois 
argumentation of the Vaithandika, the sub-marine fire is not quen 
died by the seas in spite of their force and vehemence. 

. The central theme of the sloka is that the avidya that is no 
quenchable otherwise is easily dispelled by Daya. Or, to giv 
the sloka its full import, avidya (here it means Karma) which tfa 
Lord is unable to put an end to, is very effectively wiped out b: 
Daya. 

This idea is mentioned in the second half of the sloka. Reader* 
may remember how in sloka 13 ante, it was said that the hfgf 
placed Lord Srinivasa was submerged in the flood of Daya. This 
sloka elaborates the idea and postulates that Daya is bigger than 
:he Lord Himself. 

. The true nature (swaroopa) of the Lord is such that beyond 
;aying that it is that, and it is this, no one can really fully or 
Comprehend it. As Tondaradippodi Alwar has put it in the 
naalai Qu^swio ^^ &_mrvMrr&rrgj and euessri&S 
Djru^)fi)n-) f Qu*#n-tir ^u&rtrQi-rr? (His greats is 
eyond comprehension. Beyond merely worshipping Him can 
/e ever talk of Him ?) That is His greatness. The word Brahman 
:self signifies big, vast. 

Take that swaroopa. Multiply it by two. Then again multiply 

* P ? [ by two ' That ' if y QU can rea "y comprehend fe*; 
guated with a drop of Daya. In other words a drop (bindS 
f Daya is equal to four times the dimension of the Lord's swaro*^ 
he sloka however does not say four times, but says twice its douhfc* 
-a rather quaint way of referring to four. One is reminded a* 
mkl s J%^ (twice two) in the closing verse of Tiruppavmi i 

^^ Mnity qUadr ^ led is als * '* 



t e H s as * '* 

ut one stands aghast at the immensity of the quadrupled in 

Pled ^ nfi; S t PQm A H Ut *** ' ^ f Daya 1S e ^ al to that qua 
pled infinity. And we are left to imagine what a flood of Daya 



f 

ts i 




DAYAA SATAKAM 

will come to or be like on this scale. Can the gre 
sity of Daya be dealt with in a better or a more effefc 

fc, 

Jt is not mere poetry but a great truth. Daya's 
it is that has to come to our rescue and unless it is so big and im- 
'mense, she cannot consume our (Karma) sins. The nature of 
our sins was pointed out in sloka 34 above. Daya has got to be 
that immense to drown our sins. 

There is a paata or rendering for the last word as * prabhavasi ' 
(snreftr) which means ' you are capable or competent (to effectuate 
.the destruction of avidya). But the word pravahasi adopted here 
is more apt and significant in view of the previous sloka and the 
other words in this sloka. (61). 



Vivitsaavetalee vigamaparisuddhepi hridaye 

Patupratyaahara prabhrutiputapaaka prachakitaaha i 

Namantastvaam Narayanasikhari kootasta karunel 

Niruddha tvadrohaa nripatinita neelim na jahatL (62); 

Karuna of the Lord of Naarayanaachala! Even those who have 
purified their hearts by driving out the she-demon of endless desires, 
being afraid of the arduous process of Bhaktiyoga, which involves 
having to go through fire by undergoing the hard discipline of con- 
trolling the senses and so on, pay their obeisance (resort) to you, 
i.e: 9 surrender themselves unto you. Thereafter they eschew all 
treachery and malevolence towards you, and do not give up (i.e., 
they follow) the rule of the King's son, heir to the throne. 

As Saranagati had been adopted and practised in the sixth 
decad, this next decad sets out the uttarakritya ^ri^^ or the 
conduct during the post-prapatti period of a prapanna's life. Several 
cardinal doctrines that a prapanna ought to know and adopt are 
set out in this and succeeding decads. 

The first half of the sloka explains why even those who have 
been able to subdue their desires for earthly objects such as wealth 
u and sexual pleasur.es seek refuge at Daya's feet. The first line of 
the verse describes the process by which purity of heart is secured 



IK 0AYAA SATAKAM 



if driving out the she-demon (Vethaala) of various 
pointed desire, Those who have so puriied their hearts fcy 
mkg them of desire still hesitate to pursue -the time-hojiiOHra 
of Bhaktiyoga kid dowain the Upanishad, -and which Sri J 
so elaborately explained in the Gita, because they are afc 
pursue that ambitious and iong-Arawn out process. P&tan 
is the process which drugs are subjected to, by feeing wr 
In leaves etc., and roasted in fire. In general, it signifies 
through fire, with all that that English phrase connotes, 

Pr@yaahaarah oae of the eight angaas or parts of fifeafcfci 
ft means Ike withdrawal and control of the sensesnot fej 
means an easy task for any one, especially in these days. 
patu, violent. It is not all. It is only one of the several as indi 
by the * prabritibihi ' that follows. So they resort to you 
pay obeisance to you (NamamtastvaainJ). 

The last line of the -siofca cmptoises the meed -in a prap 
to be faithful and true to Daya Devi, who has promised to 
out his karma and confer on Mm freedom from the shackl< 
Karma, which is the negative aspact of mukti, union with the, ; 
being its positive content. The words * niruddha-tvat-dm 
put this idea of the p zapanna's faithfulness to Daya in a aeg; 
manner. They mean, having prevented treachery to Daya cree 
in. To continue to break the moral and spiritual laws is t< 
faitWess to Daya. These words are reminicent of the words * m 
drohee^oftheGita. That state, they avoid. We may here ren 
ourselves of the words * Na-jahati-satpatham-j'agati * employ 
sloka 58 to describe the state of a kriti or blessed one (prapw 

Tfe Raiataimmsayaya referred to at ,the end of the stoka 
flic w^rds 'Nripati-ttita-neeti' stresses the importance ,f 
erring in future and at the same time indicates tte hxipes md 
rations engendered in the prapanna's heart by the prapatti 
has performed with mOiaaMswasa ^Tf^RT or full faith in Da) 
n f a King ' and heir-apparent to 



a vecv wat^r i """. T ~ he kin S d - m of Heaven, ha* to Is 

*T?2?, eye on ^ OM * Mt and aveid a11 errors ^ w 

ami omtmon fas post-prapatti Jife. If any aparaaJ 



DAYAA SATAKAM 103 

sin) is committed by him unawares (abuddhi-poorvaka) he must 
>e prepared to atone for it and/or receive and undergo the punish- 
lent for it. By the time however this life of his comes to an end, 
e steps into the Heavenly abode, entirely sinless, just as the Crown 
'rince becomes King at the proper time. 

This sloka contains the gist of two or three chapters of Srimad 
Lahasyatrayasara, as those who have studied that work will see 
>r themselves. 

In this sloka for the first time this Sacred Hill, Tirumala, is 
jferred to as Naarayana-sikhari. Naaraayanaachala 
i one of the puranic names of Tirumala. 



[nanyadheenassan bhavati paratantra pranamataam 
Kripel sarvadrashtaa naganayati teshaam apakritim i 

*atistvatpaaraartyam pratyati Vrishakshmaadharapatir 

Vyavastaam vaiaatyaditi vighatayantee viharasi (63). 

Kripa Devi! The Lord of Vrishaachala, though He is by nature 
ibject and subservient to no one, subjects and subjugates Himself 
) those who are His Saranaagataas: though He is omniscient and 
an see everything, He does not take count of His Saranaagataa's 
rrors. He is your pathi (Lord) but in regard to you He plays the 
)Ie of a follower. Thus you by your audaciousness sport (take a 
elight) in breaking all settled rules. 

Daya Devi is here demonstrated to be a revolutionary, a 
reaker of laws, and an upsetter of conventions arid settled ways 
ad rules. How she wields sway over the Lord of all, and Her 
,ord too, is very nicely pointed out. In three ways the Lord is 
lid to act against His own nature. 

He is an ananyaadheena subject and subservient to no one 

Ise. Yet Daya makes of Him a willing dependent on His Prana- 

icttaas (those who have done prapatti to Him) and look to Him 

s their all. He goes on errands for them. He drives a chariot, 

14 



1M DAYAA SATAKAM 

my He evea brushes and bathes their chariots ' horses, as, Lee: 

Sukha has sung. 

He is a sarvadhrashta, one who sees everything. Yet He 
blind to His Saranaagataa's foibles; for He pardons them all. H 
is in fact an avignaata srfofRf as the Sahasranaama says on 
who does not know. 

He is patim-visvasya tfff frw and also your (Daya'i 
patiLord. But He delights in displaying and publishing Hi 
subservience to you. He is a Seshi srfa to all the world. Bt 
He is a sesha ^ to you. 

In this threefold manner the change in the Lord's swabhav 
or nature is mentioned in the first three paadaas of the sloka, whic 
winds up by stating in its last quarter that thus Daya destroy 
boundaries, limitations, and laws. Her audaciousness is bon 
of the Lord's fancy for her objectives in regard to the redemptioi 
of mankind, a fondness and fency well brought out in severa 
earlier slokas, 

The sentiments of this sloka appear to belittle the Lord. Bu 
in truth and fact they give pointed prominence to His true greataes^ 
Does He not claim and proclaim in the Bhagavad Gita that the 
Gnani to whom the Lord is everything (Vasudevas-sarvam; 
5rr$^r: *?f is His soul? Gnanee-tu-atmaiva-me-maiam. $fFft 3 
STTW^^^T^T " The gnani probably thiaks that I am his soul; 
in truth and fact he is My soul." A Lord who can say so about 
Himself can well afford to be described as Daya Devi's follower 
Seshabhuta ^m*jcT. 

The several ways in which Daya Devi functions to bring about 
this result are elaborated in the succeeding slokas. 



II 

Apaampatyussatroon asahanamunerdharma nigalam 
Kripel Kaakasyaikam hitamiti hinasdsma nayanam 

Vtteenasvatantryo Vrishagiripatistvad vihritibhihi 

Dtsatyevam Devo janitasugatim dandanagatim " , (64). 



DAYAA SATAKAM 105 

Kripa Devi! The Lord of Vrishagiri, deprived of independence 
te is by your sportive acts, destroyed the enemies of (Vanina) 
lord of the waters (rivers), the shackles in the form of righteous 
tact in the case of that intolerant muni, Parasurama, and oae 
of the crow (who molested Sita Devi), as being calculated in 
case to be for the betterment of that person. He thus confers 
shnient productive of good and desirable results. 

The revolution wrought by Daya Devi in the very nature 
ie Lord was dealt with in the previous sloka. In this sloka 
poet deals with the revolution she works in the fates of those 

have committed wrongs and are therefore condemned to 
:ve punishment. Three instances of punishment proving to 
ewards in the ultimate result are mentioned, and from them 
rived a great truth and a grand theory about the place of pimish- 
t in divine dispensation. Sriman V. V. Srinivasa lyengar 
rvered memory used to say that this sloka contains Vedanta 
ka's conception of the Theory of Evil, and the place of punish- 
; in the scheme of the world order. Modern definitions of 
shment have banished the early and crude ideas of a tooth 

tooth and a nail for a nail, and postulate the purpose of punish- 
; as redemptive in its essence. This was the idea envisaged 
>esika more than six hundred years ago. 

All the three instances are taken from the Ramayana. The 
of them is about Vanina (Samudraraja) and is found in 
fuddhakanda. Acting on the advice of Vibishana who had 
seen for himself the great efficacy of Saranagati, Sri Rama 
OSes to perform Saranagati to the lord of the seas to obtain 
ivour thereby to enable Him and His huge army to cross the 
i. As there was no response from the sea-king even after 
ipse of some days, Rama becomes angry and threatens to dry 
tie ocean (Sagaram Soshayishyami). At once the Sea-king 
ITS in person and prays for Rama's pardon. Anger in Rama 
sdiately vanishes, but the destructive arrow intended to finish 
sa-king cannot go unappeased. So at the request of Varuna 
slf it is aimed at the enemies of that king and destroys them. 
; was intended as a punishment to Varuna resulted in the 
ilation of his enemies and thus conferred a boon and a benefit 
m. 

iven one's good deeds can hamper one's spiritual progress, 
was the case with Parasurama. Born of the great sage Jama- 



106 DAYAA SATAKAM 

dagni, Parasurama had ever so much of Dharma or righteous 
conduct to his credit. That however was only useful to egg him 
on to measure his strength against Sri Rama. Foiled in his attempt 
to overpower Sri Rama, he confessed to his being vanquished by 
that groat Dharma-moorty and exclaimed "Akshayyam Madhu- 
hantaaram jaanaami tvaam sureswaram" area^H flJpF^tf srrai&f ?3f 
g^ijcn;. Abashed at his previous attitude of defiance and 
haughtiness the result of accumulated dharma he hung his 
head in shame and prayed <?ft*K^MftWKW ftfifaTCcw^n *rar I ^%^I 
s$rg?^Jr^KraFT<T*3r: II (Bala 76-16) when that Karunamoorthy 
Rama who had bent the Vaishnavachaapa (Vishnu's bow) handed 
to Him, asked for a target for the arrow mounted on it; and at 
that request of Parasurama aimed it at his Parasurama's good 
deeds, that had proved to be a nigala or chain arresting progress. 
Note the reference to Parasurama as ' asahanamuni ' the intolerant 
sage an apparent contradiction in terms; but that correctly des- 
cribes Parasurama. The compound word dharma-nigalam, chain 
or trammel in the shape of good and righteous deeds, is also v$ry 
significant. 

The third instance is that of the crow who molested Sita Devi 
in Chitrakoota. Though he was Indra's son he is referred to as 
Kaakaasura 3TO?; for having acted like an asura (or demon) 
in the form of a crow. Unlike the Sea-King and Parasurama 
this crow was a great sinner, an aardraaparaadhi snsJ'^U^ (wet 
sinner). He had hurt Jaganmaata (Sita Devi) and inflicted wounds 
on her sacred body. Rama as soon as he saw what that .crow 
had done, took a grass, consecrated it with Brahmaastra, and aimed 
it at the crow. The crow took to its heels, or rather began to fly, 
in a vain attempt at escaping that missile aimed at him. Somehow 
it felt that it can save itself by falling at Rama's feet. And after 
having gone round all the worlds it came and fell at His feet praying 
for protection: sfacsteEFj; tfnss^T ^ ^01 ^ : . What happened 
then is beautifully described by Sita Devi herself who was a 
witness to this scene: 



(Sundarakanda 37-Sloka 34.) 

This is the essence of Rama's protective grace. Though the crow 
eminently deserved destruction, Rama protected him Jayanta 



DAYAA SATAKAM 107 

in the form of a crow. But the astra (arrow) cannot go in vain. 
One of the two eyes of the crow was destroyed so that it may do 
only half of the mischief it is prone to do with both eyes intact. 
Is this punishment or protection? * Kripayaa paryapaalayat * 
Rama protected with the help of Kripa or grace. That is why this 
sloka employs the word Kripa. The Ramayana sloka can be 
seen to run in the poet's mind. 

All these apparently irreconcilable acts are attributed to Daya 
Devi's sportful ways. She takes a delight in reversing the Lord's 
decision to punish. Punishment strictly so called may be all right 
in cases of persons whose motto is * I can never bend my head 
in -obeisance to any one' * R^nj WJfera;. But in cases of 
persons like those referred to here where the aparradhin (sinner) 
has repented and said Namaste and/or jitam-te (I am conquered) 
by you, the punishing mood in a merciful person will change into 
a benevolent and rewarding mood. To the extent that the Lord's 
desire to punish is thwarted, to that extent He is said to be one 
unable to hold His own. Vileena-swatantrayaha ^fa^ffifep-: 
Bereft of Independence. 

Disati-evam-janita-sugatim, dandana-gatim. Thus the Lord 
confers punishment which is productive of good results. 

Dandana-vidhim is an alternative rendering. It means the 
order to punish. 

Pausing here for a moment one can see the several graded 
ways in which Karma and Karma-phala are done away with by 
Daya, as described in slokas 61 to 64. In sloka 61 it was total 
annihilation of Karma. In 62 the parapanna's fear of future sins 
creeping in was adverted to by referring to the rule of the Raja 
kumara who is certain that he will receive punishment in some form 
for his errors of commission and omission. In the next sloka 
Daya is said to make the Lord forget, or rather fail to note, our 
sins and transgressions. In. this sixty-fourth sloka even when 
the Lord determines to punish, Daya Devi transforms and converts 
that determination and that punishment into a benevolent and 
rewarding determination, calculated (of course only in proper cases) 
for the benefit of the sinner. 

Working in such revolutionary ways, and adopting highly 
drastic measures. Daya protects those that rely on her for help 
and protection. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 



n (s^) .' 

Nishaadanaam netaa kapikulapathihi kaapi sabaree 
Kuchelah kubjaa saa vrajayuvatayo maalyakriditi \ 

Ameeshaam nimnatvam vrishagiripatenmnatimapi 

Prabhuthaissrothobhihi prasabham anukampe\ samayasin (65 

Anukampe! You forcefully reduce to the same level the low 
ness ef (1) the chief among hunters (Guha) (2) the King of the rac 
of monkeys (Sugreeva), (3) some nameless hunter-woman (SabaiiJ 
(4) Kochela (the proverMaliy poor person), (5) that famous Kubj; 
(a bent woman with a hunchback), (6) the young damsels of (Jokuia 
and (7) a maker of garlands, and the high-ness of the Lord of Vrisha- 
giri, by the immensity of your flow (flood). 

One of the noblest attributes of the 'Lord is Sauseelya. Il 
is ^defined as Mahato-mandaissaha-neerandhra-samslesham *?f^- 

****** $W&& or the intimate and free mixing of the 
inordinately great ones with the very low ones. This trait is specially 
known as " Guna." Though all good and auspicious attributes 
are ganaas strictly so called, this particular trait is specially indicated 
when one talks of 'gwa' simpliciter. c.f. Gunavaan 3<*z <*, 
the first of the sixteen traits which Valmiki mentions to Narada 
m the opening sarga of the Ramayana. Also the same word 

gunavaan ' used by Alavandar in his Stotra-Ratna as one among 
the 12 gunas specified by him in the sloka beginning. Vasee 
Vadanyo ................. This Seela ^ ^ ft 






110 DAYAA SATAKAM 

The Gopis are referred to next as the young damsels of Vraja 
(Gokula). They are noted for their lack of urbanity and for thdir 
utter ignorance. They themselves describe their rustic and un- 
sophisticated nature when they sing 

JTRf: 



(Bhagavatha 103924). 

Andal has celebrated their ignorance by singing about their race 
as <2yfl5)a/ QGvrgiLb |)<si)<su/r ^uj&<3j<s\)&, the race of Gopis 
which has not an iota of knowledge. What Krishna was to them 
is too well known to be dilated upon here. Maalyakrit, the 
maker of garlands. Krishna with his brother Balarama went to 
this persons's house and he rushed forward to greet them .with the 
exclamation 



II 



Vedanta Desika sees with his devoted and poetical eye the 
mingling of the great Lord with these seven types of persons. At 
once he reminds himself of the unimaginable eminence 35T7T of 
the Lord. And he gasps with wonder at the work of Daya Devi 
that has effectively wiped out the difference between His eminence 
and their depths (each in a particular direction, and reduced them 
all to the same level. Nothing but Daya's terrific flow can achieve 
this result of bringing down mountains and filling up valleys. And 
he sings to that effect by saying that by her prabhootha (immense) 
srotas, (flow or flood) she levels up forcibly,, violently sHCHtew*i%. 
But for Daya and her capacity, the Lord will ever have been beyond 
the reach of mortals, and the mortals could never dream of con- 
tacting Him at "all, much less intimately; and the twain would 
never have met. 



Tvaya Drishtastushtim Bhajati Parameshtheenijapade 

vahanmoortheerashtau viharati mrudaneeparibrudhaha \ 

Bibharthi swaarajyam vrishasikharisringari karune 

Smaseeuro Devasur^^aranaas^erasubhataha (66) 



DAYAA SATAKAM 111 

O! Karuna of the Ornament of the Vrishagiri crest! By being 
he recipient of your glances (drishti) the four-faced Brahma 
ejoices in (the enjoyment of) his position. Similarly, seen hy you, 
he Consort of Parvati sports by taking the eightfold forms. Indra 
:oo, because he is seen by you, gets renown as a front rank warrior 
n the battle between the Devas and the Asuras, and rules over his 
kingdom. 

In the fifth decad reference was made to Brahma, Siva, and 
sther gods in several places vide Slokas 41, 42 and 50. In sloka 
SO especially it was said that they were all really tied down to their 
posts. Sloka 53 gave us the idea that what status they possess 
has really been conferred on them by Daya Devi according to 
their deserts. Here it is stated plainly that their enjoyment in 
their respective positions or posts is really a boon conferred on 
them by Daya Devi. It is attributed to her drishti ^fe or looks. 
Not only moksha, the ultimate beatitude, but all enjoyments 
of a pleasurable and desirable nature are Daya's gifts. 

First comes Brahma who is referred to as a Parameshti a 
superior or supreme person. This name occurs as one of the 
names of the Lord Himself in the Sri Vishnu Sahasranama). By 
Daya's drishti S[fe he is said to obtain tushti <jfe (happiness) 
in his position as Brahma the Creator, the constant reciter of 
the Vedas, and so on. 

If Brahma enjoys happiness, Paramasiva is said to revel in 
sport. Not content with the enjoyment pertaining to one form or 
moorti, *jfer, he takes eight different forms or moortis, and imbibes 
sportive pleasures through the several of them. The eight forms 
he is said to take are the five elements (earth, water, fire, air, and 
akaasa or ether), the sun, the moon, and hotri, ?>ft, the sacri- 
ficer. Siva was referred to as the Tarunendu-vibhooshana, 
^frfSom in sloka 53, one who is adorned by the young 
(crescent)" moon. Here he is referred to as mridaanee-panbr- 
adhaha retftaf^:- Mridaha re: is an epithet of Siva, Mndaa 
*T*T and *Mridamee TJFTt of Pmttitimridaanee-paribridhaha is 
again Siva, the Consort of Parvati. Thus Siva is referred to with 
reference to Parvati and Parvati *iUi reference to Siva. The 
Ardhanari concept is indicated here by the employment of the 
term mridaanee-paribridhaha to denote Paramasiva. 

Indra the King of Devaloka is next referred to. The term 
^'/tvaya drishtaha governs all the three words used 
15 



ill DAYAA SATAKAM 

here to indicate Brahma, Siva and Indra respectively. Sunaseeraha 
^TRftT: is an epithet of Indra. He is said to obtain by 
Daya-Kataaksha not only the ability to rule over his kingdom 
(Svaaraajyam) ^"KJW(' but also to be in the vanguard of the 
frequent battles between the Devas and the Asuras. 

Lord Srinivasa is referred to in this sloka as Vrishasikhari- 
sringaari ^TfwfT ^J^rfr He who adorns the crest or peak 
of Vrishagiri. His Karuna is therefore addressed as Vrishasikhari 
Sringaari Karune ! It may also be taken to mean the Karuna of the 
beautiful Lord of Vrishagiri. 



Daye dugdhodanvad-vyatiyuta sudhaasindhunayataha 

tvadaasleshaan-nityam janitamrita sanjeevana dasaaha \ 

Svadante daanlebhyaha Srutivadanakarpooragulikaa 

vishunvantas-chittam Vrishasikharivisvambharagunaaha " (67). 

Daya Devi! Because of your intimate and close contact, with the 
(other) attributes (gunas) of that great Protector of this world residing 
in Vrishaa-chala, like the mixing of the ocean of milk and the ocean 
of nectar, those gunas are being (tastefully) enjoyed by those who have 
conquered the senses (and set their hearts on the Lord), as having the 
capacity to bring to life even dead persons, as a ball of camphor 
giving fragrance to the mouth of Dame Sruti, and as calculated to 
squeeze, out of ecstacy, the minds of devotees contemplating on them. 

Brahma, Rudra and Indra were said by the previous sloka 
to be the recipients of Daya's favour. Now it is pointed out that 
even the Lord's own gunas got exalted by an association with her. 
Without Daya all the other great qualities of the Lord were pointed 
out to be faults or blemishes (doshas). That was in sloka 15 ante. 
The grandeur and glory of those very attributes when they are 
embraced by Daya (i.e., intimately associated with Daya) are 
enjoyed in this sloka. It has been pointed out in the foregoing 
slokas of this decad that Daya has got that great capacity of destroy- 
ing anishta srf^ci:; .so the other qualities when harnessed to 
Daya lose their propensity to confer anishta on sinners, and acquire 



DAYAA SATAKAM 113 

when acting in concert with her great name and fame. It has been 
said that they furnish rich flavour and taste. Svadante ^RFct 
To whom? Not to us who give free scope for the senses to work 
havoc with our spiritual progress. Only to the 5F%**T: (Danthe- 
bhyaha) those who have controlled their senses and have purified 
their hearts, as pointed out in the first paada (quarter) of sloka 62, 
by banhhing desire for worldly pleasures. How do they regard 
Daya, and how does Daya appeal to them ? A fourfold answer is 
furnished by this sloka to that question. 

By intimate contact with Daya, the other qualities get mingled 
with that greatest and noblest of traits, like the blending of the milk 
ocean with the nsctar ocean. From the milk ocean when it 
was churned poioon came out. it is said. So milk ocean can 
yield not only very good things like elephants, horses, moon and 
kalpaka tree, but also poison. The other qualities of the Lord 
are like that, capable of functioning for good as well as for bad. 
Daya is ths ocean of nectar and nothing but good nay the very 
best will be found there. 

The second feature d:alt with h?re is really a corollary of 
the first. Janita-mrita-sanjeevann, dasaaha 



Enlivening cbad persons. Being amrta 3f*Tcr or nectar, no wonder 
death is banished and even the dead begin to live (vide Sloka" 12 
and 22) 

The third relates to the rasa T*T that the Srutis find in those 
gunas of the Lord. The Vedas arc referred to as a Damsel who 
uses fragrant camphor-globules to give sweetness and flavour to her 
mouth. It has always been the fashion for ladies of status for 
sweetening their breath to use small pills like Kasturi-pills or Pachai- 
kkarpoora (camphor) pills. The great and famous Veda-maata 
uses these attributes, gunas, of the Lord as such gulikas 
; (small bails or pills) and thereby her noble mouth exhudes 
fragrance. Obviously the reference is to the fact that the Srutis 
extol ths great gunas of the Lord and that is the reason for their- 
far-flung greatness and glory. Elsewhere Desika has referred to 
his own speech or work as sprihaneeya-saurabha-mucha-vaacha 
^^offcr ^W3T 5TT5TT. The excellence of the Vedas lies in their 
extolling the gunas of the Lord, and not in taking great pains to 
deny that the Lo;d has any gunaas at all. Vadana cr^rT means face 
and also mouth. Mouth stands not only for taste but also for 
speech The sweetness and fragrance of the Vedas are entirely 



114 DAYAA SATAKAM 

due to their revelling in the attributes of the Lord which alone 
glorify Him and make Him worthy of attainment. Desika 
does not belong to that system of thought which negates gunaas 
or attributes to the ultimate God-head. He is a God only because 
He is good; and all His goodness and good qualities depend upon 
the presence of Daya. 

To those who contemplate on these features or gunas of the 
Lord, their mind gets ecstatic, and melt away in the excess of that 
ecstacy. That is referred to as the fourth and the last aspect that 
appeals to the sense-conquering persons (Dhantebhyaha). The 
Alwars and the Vaishnavite Acharyas have really got into raptures 
and rhapsodies when they think of the Lord's auspicious attributes 
Kalyanagunas. Nammalwar the chief among them very often 
gets into a trance when he contemplates the Kalyana-gunas of the 
Lord. <su<so<sB8sGr<3uj85sr FFIT^^JD @<smmi&6fr (gunas that simply 
captivate poor me) is how he speaks about them. 

In this fourfold manner it is said in this sloka that the gunas 
of the Lord when closely associated with Daya are very sweet 
to contemplate, svadante FT^%. They are eternally so nityam 
svadante ftw FT^cl". 

This is one of the several slokas in this Stotra which deal with 
the parama-tatparya H^dlcW (chief meaning) conveyed by it, 
namely that Daya is the Empress among the Lord's several 
gunas. Guneswari ^wft (sloka 101 post). 



git fifaft?Wie|IZ 



Jagajjanmasthema pralaya rachanaakelirasiko 

Vimuktyekadvaaram vighatitakavaatam pranayinaam \ 

hi tvayyaayattam dvitayam upadheekritya Karune ! 

Visuddhaanaam vaachaam Vrishasikharinaathas-stutipadamu (68) 

Karuna Devi! The Lord of Vrishagiri is extolled (attains the state 
of being praised) by the very pure words (the Vedas) chiefly for two 
factors. One is that He derives pleasure (rasa) in the (eternal) 
sport of creating this world, keeping it safe, and bringing about its 
laya or destruction. The other is that to His lovers (devotees) He is 



DAYAA SATAKAM 115 

Himself the open door and only entrance to Mukti. Both these are 
His, because of your bringing them about. (Thus the tributes that 
the Vedas pay to the Lord are really tributes paid to you). 

One more sloka in this stotra where Daya is put above the 
Lord Himself. This sloka hints atwithout saying so in so many 
words the Lord shining in borrowed feathers. 

If sloka i 61 to 65 dealt with ths banishment of anishta vfasz 
to us, sloka 66 refers to the great on^s like Brahma, Rudra and 
Indra, having their anishta dispelled and being able to enjoy position, 
pleasure and power, by Daya's kindness; sloka 67 refers to the 
high status attained by the Lord's gunas themselves by association 
with Daya. This sloka goes one step further and postulates that 
the Lord Himself owes His greatness to Daya Devi. No one can 
praise the high Lord as the Vedas have done. They extol Him in 
several places and in several ways; but on close scrutiny the Lord 
will be seen to be praised for His ^I^'IM'R 1 Jagad-vyaapaara 
(cosmic evolution and involution) firstly, and secondly for His 
redemptive power, i.e., releasing deserving souls from the bondage 
of being involved in that cosmic process for ever. Enough has 
been said in the earlier slokas calculated to demonstrate that Crea- 
tion (sloka 17), sustenance (sloka 18) and even destruction (sloka 16) 
are all the work of Daya. So too is Moksha (sloka 20). In the fifth 
decad especially, it was demonstrated how Daya is the giver of 
Srcyas meaning mukti. So in this sloka it is stated that the Lord 
becomes the object of praise to the Srutis (Vedas) only because of 
the two-fold eminence attained by Him because of what Daya does. 

The first line of this sloka is remnicicnt of two earlier classical 
works, one in Tamil, and one in Sanskrit. Kamban starts his 
Ramayana with the verse which talks of L<su<Lb (urr^o/(t/Lb 



The great Ramanuja starts his Sri Bhashya with 
" Akila-bhuvana-janma-sthema-bhangaadi-leele " 



The first line of this sloka of Dcsika translates the former and 
praphrases the latter of those two great sayings. The jagat-kaara- 
natva spoken about in all these is a Brahmalakshana *5T*TOT or 
distinctive mark of Parabrahma TOTgJ as shown by the second 



116 DAYAA SATAKAM 

of the Brahma Sutras of Vyasa. So if that Jagatkaaranatva ^r- 
C=M<URC( is made much of by the Vedas and the sutras, the credit 
really goes to Daya Devi who has been demonstrated to be chiefly 
responsible for all the factors that go to make that kaaranatva. 



The words Kelt %fcr and Rasikaha Tf^ff: have been used 
to indicate that what the Lord does is not as a duty or under com- 
pulsion. It is all a /re//, a sport. And the Lord takes great pleasure 
in indulging in this sport. Prompted by Daya and egged on by 
His own love of sport (Icela) the Lord takes to creation etc., is the 
idea so nicely conveyed by the use of the two words Kelt and Rasi- 
kahct. 

The second paada of the sloka embellishes, and restates the 
sentiment mentioned in, the second paada of the sloka of Sri Bhashya 
referred to above. There the words are " Vinata-vividha-bhoota- 
vraata-rakshaika cbekshe" f^af^rfrsr ^^WW^P^raff The form 
of the Rakshana or protection referred to th^re is indicated in this 
sloka by the word Vimukhti f^nrfocr. For vinata f^RT, the word 
pranayi snrrfo" is substituted. The Lord never likes to think of 
prapannas as saranaagataas. He thinks of them as friends 
and lovers; not only He but Lakshmi too. For if He refers to 
Vibheeshana who had come to Him as a saranaagata, as one who 
had rightly and properly come to Him as a friend, mitra-bhaavena 
sampraaptam firsnrr^ tfsrTRf, Sita Devi desires to make Ravana 
Himself a friend; fordoes she not tell him ftr^nftRft^F ^ TFRT: and 
?fcr ^ *T3cT ^? D^sika goes one step further and refers to the 
Prapanna as a pranayi sn^ft" lover, 



To such lovers ths Lord is an opsn door to Moksha. 
Siddhopayatva of ths Lord is beautifully brought out hsre. The 
upanishadic text which says ' To him on whom His choice falls, 
He gives Himself up, and by him alon^ Ha is attained ' is thought 
of here. He alone is the opm door to Moksha; those who love 
Him are given free entrance at the door. Eka-dvaaram or only 
entrance is very significant. Whether one pursues the arduous 
path of Bhaktiyoga, or the equally difficult, but apparently more 
easy, path of Prapatti, the phala (fruit) viz., Moksha is a gift of the 
Lord. It is not earned by one's own end savour. All that man 
can do, and does, only earns for him the Prasaada WK or bounty 
of the Lord, and that Prasada takes the form of Sankalpa, or will, 
which alone confers Moksha. 



r>cnn me jagat-xaaranatva and the moksha-pradatva ar< 
peculiar and exclusive province of Lord Srinivasa. No < 
god even shares either of them with the Lord, leave alone 
and wholly possessing the capacity for them. The Vedas p 
the Lord very often with reference to these two qualities of 
He is a stutipada object of praise to the Vcdas, which are 
referred to as Visuddhaanaam vaachaam pure-worded. 
lo not talk out of ignorance or partiality. Their purity is supr 

The above-mentioned two reasons for the Veda's praist 
pointed out to be tvayyaayattam c<wrarPRT brought about by 
-eferring to Daya. Dvitayam fenf the two of these. 



ft$R?rai: II 



Kalikshobhonmeelat-kshirtkalusha koolankasha javaihi 

anuchchedair-etair-avatatatavaislwmyarahitaihi i 
ravaahaiste Padmaasahacharaparishkaarini Kripel 

Vikalpante analpaa Vrishasikharino nirjharaganaaha (6' 
Daya Devi (who is) an ornament to the Consort of Laks 
The entire group of these streams and waterfalls that are in p 
n the Tiruniala Hill are comparable with your flow and 
>ecause (1) They are also swift enough to (uproot) destroy the 
of human beings) that are ever on the increase because of the agit 
ind perturbation brought about by the Kali age (2) they are 
ncessant and never ceasing (3) they are also immense and (4) 
ire also capable of flowing without maintaining any distincti< 
ligh and low. 

Starting from the very first sloka which refers to the flo 
Daya like sugar-cane juice, the r.lokas which deal with the flow 
lood of Daya are very numerous. Slokas 60, 61 and 65 
ecapitulated that sentiment very pointedly. And hnre 2 
n, sloka 69 the flow of Daya is equated with the flow of the stre 
alls, and cascades, in which TirumalaHill abounds. Air 
n sloka 3 1 it was stated that the vaari-dhaaraas of Vrishagiri 
:laim Daya's flow. That idea is elaborated here by pointing 



118 DAYAA SATAKAM 

The fastness of the current in each case is first enjoyed, 
Each is so fast that it is capable of uprooting Kalusha (dirt; unclean- 
liness) which is ever on the increase (unmeelat) owing to the play 
of Kali ths evil age. Kshiti means the earth. All the sins of 
the earth even as they begin to appear are washed away by the 
swift and powerful current of Daya. So too the streams flowing 
on the Hill wash away all the dirt as quickly as it gathers. 

Koolankashaha; tearing away the bank. Both the streams 
are incessant, perennial, without break sfrps^t: 

And neither of them makes any difference between high and 
low. Daya levels up beings as pointed out in sloka 65. The 
Hill streams also bring down mountain crests and fill up low-lying 
tracts. They thus do not distinguish between low and high (sraz 
and cf) Avata is a pit, a cavity; tata is a mound, raised or 
at least level ground. 

Both again are sr^r^TT: by no means small or insignificant 
meaning obviously very big and large. f^fT Nirjhara is a 
mountain-torrent or waterfall. WT: Ganaaha is groups. Some 
adopt th 3 rendering gunaaha wr: meaning nature, characteristics. 
But ganaaha is the preferable paata for the sentiments voiced in 
the sloka. 

Daya is addressed in this sloka as Padmaa-sahachara-parish- 
kaarini. Parishkara means embellishing, adorning, acting as an 
ornament to. Here Daya Devi is said to embellish and adorn 
Padmaa-sahachara, or th? Consort of Padma (Lakshmi). Saha- 
chara is one who goes with or accompanies another. Here the 
Lord is referred to as Padma-sahachara, and Daya is adorning such 
a One, Lord and Sri are mutual ornaments to each other. Daya 
is an ornament to the Two of them. 

In sloka 66, the Lord was spoken of as an ornament to 
VrishagirL Here Daya is talked of as an ornament to Sree-nivasa 
(the Eternal Couple Divya Dampatee). 

Vikalpa is an alternative. Vikalpante means therefore "are 
said to be an equally effective and efficacious alternative." Reliance 
on Daya or a bath in the purifying streams of Tirumala Hill, 
either is as efficacious as the other in relieving us of our sins. 

The opening words of this stoka may be seen to emphasise 
the anjshtavidhvamsaseelatva 3rfn^dllW^n^lcf of the Lord as well 



Daya, which is the topic dealt with by Desika in this dec 
s Stotra. 



m chetowitteh-kimidamiti vismerabhuvanam 
K.ripe\ Simhakshmaabhrit-kritamukhachamatkaarakaranam i 
inyaasachchannaprabala vrijina praabhrita bhritaam 
iraliprasihaanam te Srutinagamsringatakajushaha (70) 
ECripa Devi! Your coming forward and welcoming, at 
-roads of the great city known as the Vedas, persons who br 
ferings to you their innumerable and mighty sins covered h; 
called Saranagati, makes the entire world surprised at wha 
ivorld) regards as an act brought about by a faulty intellect, : 
is admiration even to that learned Vidwan who resides in 
aachala (another name for Tirumala). 
The reactions of the men of the world and the reactions 
. Srinivasa Himself to the great doings of Daya Devi that h 
enjoyed in detail in this decad are dealt with in this clos 
i of the decad. The poet shows that he is not unaware of 
al adverse criticisms of persons belonging to different schc 
tiought, about the nature and efficacy of prapatti. Pec 
lot wanting even to day, and even among Vaishnavaites, \ 
i-pooh the system of prapatti, to establish which Desika 
j so much in this stotra and elsewhere. Even most arc 
pious devotees find it difficult in their hearts to realise that 
;e of Srinivasa is so potent that their untold sins commr 
revious births can be wiped out by that Grace, in ans 
ie observance of prapatti or Saranagati by an individual. T 
k more of their sins than of the qualities of the Lord. In sev 
es in the course of his numerous works Desika has taken g 
s to point out that if only people properly understood 
titial nature of the Lord and of His Daya, they will never c< 
oubt the efficacy of prapatti as a means to all ends, and certa 
means to that great and noble end, namely, Mukti, whicl: 
t-thinking men and women must hanker for. It is because 
laaviswasa H^lfcWRI or undying faith in the potency of Praj 



120 DAYAA SATAKAM 

maund of oil as compared to Bhaktiyoga which is a maund of 
gingelly. 

The cheap gibe indulged in by critics is very beautifully described 
in the words ftrfrre %cftfw: 1w ? on the part of Daya. 

The words YR^RT^vT STPT^nTclf are calculated to recollect 

to us the carrying of bhog or naivedya to the Gods in temples 
which are taken from the Paakasala (cooking place) to the 
presence of the Deity covered over by a cloth. Praabhrta SOW 
mean > a present or a gift, and is frequently used to denote an offering 
made to a deity or to a king. Here the naivedya or offering is 
nothing but sins not mere sins, but prabala vrigina sr^Tf f^FT 
mighty sins. They are covered over by a cloth known as Bhara- 
nyaasa or Saranaagati. 

^5T Chchanna means covered, concealed. That the analogy 
is very apt and appropriate can be seen if one reminds oneself of 
the 29th sloka in which the poet has spoken about Daya Devi's 
state of starvation for want of sufficient number of sins to appease 
her hunger. It was indicated in that sloka that the sins of the upaa- 
sakaas are, so to say, food to Daya Devi. The same analogy is 
employed here wherein the poet refers to the sins as being taken 
as offerings to Daya. (When we come to sloka 97 we will find 
the poet referring to this analogy once again). Just as a starving 
person who is told that numerous tasty victuals are being brought 
to him, will jump up from his place and rush up to meet the person 
who brings all that food, Daya Devi is here said to go ahead to 
receive and welcome those persons who bring to her that 
much-desired food, namely, sins. If this issuing out of Daya Devi 
and her welcoming are done secretly, there will be no opportunity 
for others to know about it or to cavil at it. As it is, she comes to 
where four cross roads meet. It is impossible to think of a place 
more opan to the public than such a spot. The appropriateness 
of the poet's reference to a Sringaataka ^T^ a place where 
four roads meet must be appreciated by every rasika. The paths 
followed by the four classes of upaasakaas referred to by the Lord 
in the Geeta as sn<f :, f^WTf , arofrff, wrfr Aartha, Jignaasu, Arthaar- 
thee and Gnaani are the four roads of the city of the Srutis which 
meet at this place, and Daya is said to present herself there. Desika 
has purposely called this a meeting of cross-roads in the city of 
Sruti, ^RRTR. In this city of the Vedas there are people who 
have evolved several doctrines and theories. Before their very 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

EIGHTH DECAD. 



FTER having sung about the glory of Daya in the. previous 
seven decads, and shown to us how essential it is that we 
resort to Daya for helping us and saving us, Sri Vedanta Desika 
for the first time attempts to set out what it is that he has been 
praising all along. Daya is defined, and her true nature is set 
out only in this decad. The opening sloka of this eighth decad 
points out that Daya is Lord's Ichcha or desire. In the very next 
sloka it is stated that Daya has also got a form, and thereby it is 
shown that the poet has every justification to personify this quality 
or attribute, and sing a whole stotra in her praise. The swaroopa 
(essential nature) and the Roopa (form) of Daya are so dealt with 
that the central theme of Nammalwar's eighth patthu of Tiruvoi- 
mozhi almost seems to follow as corollary. That topic is Bhakta- 
chchandaanuvarti (^d^.^T^fa) which means following the bent 
of mind or inclination of the devotee. 



Harini (f[ftufr) is the metre adopted for this decad. Both 
sikharini (7th decad) and harini denote high class women. Sikha- 
rini denotes an excellent (top-class) woman; harini is another 
name for chitrinee f^fspjfV which is as per Apte's definition the 
noun for a " woman endowed with various talents and excellences "; 
" one of the four divisions into which writers on erotic science 
class women." It is a matter for special study and research as 
to the reason why a particular metre is employed by great poets 
like Kalidasa and Vedanta Desika, and their ilk, for a particular 
topic. It is not a compliment to their genius or greatness to suggest 
that haphazardly they choose and adopt metres for their verses. 



124 DAYAA SATAKAM 

Kim-kurvaana-prabhoota-gunaantara-The kimkaratvam o 
service-rendering propensity of the other gunaas of the Lord i 
recapitualated to our minds once again. Those gunas are al 
prabhoota mighty. 

*TT - c3FT Saa-tvam Such a you (Daya). This takes in all the 
excellences referred to above. Such a person as you possessing 
all these essential qualities for protection have taken into youi 
head to look at me (eekshana). For any one else it would have 
been a saahasaa. very rash act. But not so to you who possess 
all the above set out items of greatness. My protection is therefore 
assured. 



f ftflff & W^ II (^) 

Vrishagiripater-hridayaa visvaavataara sahaayinee 

kshapitanikhilaavadyaa Devil kshamaadinishevitaa i 

Bhuvanajananee pumsam bhogaapavargavidhaayinee 

vitamasi pade vyaktim nityaam bibharshi Dayel svayamu (72) 

Devi! Daya! you are very dear to the Lord of Vrishagiri; you 
assist the Lord in all His avataaras; you dispel all sins and imperfec- 
tions; you are served by kshama and others; you are the mother 
of the universe; you bestow on human beings pleasure and bliss; 
you by yourself take an eternal form (vigraha) of your own in 
Paramapada. 

Having dwelt with the swaroopa of Daya in the the previous 
verse, the poet deals with her roopa or form in this. And this 
he does by showing to us in his inimitable way that Lakshmi is 
really Daya incarnate. Sleshaalankaara is handled with very great 
effect once again. Six points of identity are mentioned. We 
shall enjoy the beauties of the slesha in this sloka one by one. 

1 . Vrishagiripater-hridy aa : 

Daya takes its origin form the heart of the Lord of Vrishagiri 
(hridya). The Lord is very fond of Daya and likes her better 
than all His other qualities. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

Lakshmi is very dear to the heart of the Lord. In fac 
isides in His chest, the seat of the heart. 

Visvaavataara safaaayinee: 

Daya is of great service and aid in all the avatars tha 
3rd undertakes, assumes. This has been dealt with in ! 
5 already, and will be elaborated later in sloka 82. 

Lakshmi follows the Lord in all His avataars, and is ir 
dispensable for the achievement of the purpose of each av; 
s the Vishnupurana has put it, if He comes as Rama she c 

Seeta; if He becomes Krishna, She becomes Rukmini, ai 
i in all avatars. This idea has been very nicely enjoyed by D 

Sloka No. 10 of Sri Stuti (where She is referred to as a 
ihachari during avatars), and in the latter half of the 1st 
' Dasavatara Stotra. 

Kshapitaaikhilaavadyaa 

Daya is a dispeller of all sins, faults and imperfections ii 
>taries< This idea has been enjoyed in extenso in several prec< 



Lakshnii's one great purpose is to drive away evil and 
G<surflLDiT(y<35 Lf^^LLffo $)($LJU!T6rr GS)Sosr@lri-&@GLD f (Namma 
"^rf ^.<v,prt. she is mangalam mangalaanaam; and the 
d wise people resort to Her for getting cleansed of their 
.d avidya: 



>oreekartum-duritanivahani-tyaktum-aadyam-avidyaam. 
Kshamaadinishevita 

Daya is subserved by qualities like forbearance. It was s 

early as the 7th sloka ante that Kshama or forbeai 

)u/T,p<5tf>ii) is of great help in removing the obstacles in the 

the free flow of Daya. Koorattalwan sings of " Dayaaksh 

daarya ......... " and thereby shows to us how shaanti or ksl 

d a host of other qualities really form the retinue of Daya, 

Lakshmi being the Patta-Mahishi (uLLi^wj$l<stf!) or ( 
>nsort of the Lord, all other consorts like Bhoomidevi, N 
;vi etc., wait on Her as Her maids. Kshama is the nam< 
toomi (world), 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

Kim-kurvaana-prabhoota-gunaantara-The kimkaratvam 
^ice-rendering propensity of the other gunaas of the Lord 
apitualated to our minds once again. Those gunas are ; 
bhoota mighty. 



T Saa-tvam Such a you (Daya). This takes in all tl 
silences referred to above. Such a person as you possessia 
these essential qualities for protection have taken into yoi 
d to look at me (eekshana). For any one else it would ha 1 
ti a saahasaa very rash act. But not so to you who posse 
he above set out items of greatness. My protection is therefoi 
ired. 



%$ 



ll 

hagiripater-hridayaa visvaavataara sahaayinee 
kshapitanikhilaavadyaa Devil kshamaadinishevitaa i 
wnajananee pumsam bhogaapavargavidhaayinee 
vitamasi pade vyaktim nityaam bibharshi Dayel svayam n (72) 
Devi! Daya! you are very dear to the Lord of Vrishagiri; yoi 
t the Lord in all His avataaras; you dispel all sins and imperfec 
; you are served by kshania and others; you are the mothei 
ie universe; you bestow on human beings pleasure and bliss 
by yourself take an eternal form (vigraha) of your own ii 
mapada. 

"laving dwelt with the swaroopa of Daya in the the previous 

, the poet deals with her roopa or form in this. And this 

>es by showing to us in his inimitable way that Lakshmi Is 

Daya incarnate. Sleshaalankaara is handled with very great 

once again. Six points of identity are mentioned. We 

enjoy the beauties of the slesha in this sloka one by one. 

rishagiripater-hridyaa : 

)aya takes its origin form the heart of the Lord of Vrishagiri 
r a). The Lord is very fond of Daya and likes her better 
ill His other qualities. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 125 

Lakshmi is very dear to the heart of the Lord. In fact she 
jsides in His chest, the seat of the heart. 

Visvaavataara sahaayinee: 

Daya is of great service and aid in all the avatars that the 
ord xmdertalces, assumes. This has been dealt with in Sloka 
5 already, and will be elaborated later in sloka 82. 

Lakshmi follows the Lord in all His avataars, and is in fact 
.dispensable for the achievement of the purpose of each avataar. 
s the Vishnupurana has put it, if He comes as Rama she comes 
; Seeta; if He becomes Krishna, She becomes Rukmini, and so 
i in all avatars. This idea has been very nicely enjoyed by Desika 
. Sloka No. 10 of Sri Siuti (where She is referred to as a Priya 
ihachari during avatars), and in the latter half of the 1st sloka 
F Dasavatara Stotra. 

Kshapitanikfailaavadyaa 

Daya is a dispeller of all sins, faults and imperfections in her 
)taries. This idea has been enjoyed in extenso in several preceding 
okas. 

Lakshmi's one great purpose is to drive away evil and sin. 
<3o//f?/jD/T(/5> < <95 j-bGjLDffo |g)(/5iju/T<5Yr aflSsisr tg rr &(&>($ LD* (Nammalwar) 
F^f Tr^nFrr. She is mangalam mangalaanaam; and the pure 
id wise people resort to Her for getting cleansed of their sins 
id avidya: 



ooreekartum-duritanivaham-tyaktum-aadyarn-avidyaam. 
Kshamaadinishevita 

Daya is subserved by qualities like forbearance. It was stated 

early as the 7th sloka ante that Kshama or forbearance 

3urrn)i<o$)LD) is of great help in removing the obstacles in the way 

the free flow of Daya. Koorattalwan sings of " Dayaakshanti- 

idaarya ......... " and thereby shows to us how shaanti or kshama 

id a host of other qualities really form the retinue of Daya. 

Lakshmi being the Patta-Mahishi (uLLL_u)sw5?<sip) or Chief 
onsort of the Lord, all other consorts like Bhoomidevi, Neela- 
evi etc., wait on Her as Her maids. Kshama is the name for 
tioomi (world). 



126 DAYAA SATAKAM 

5. Bhuvanajananee 

Daya as the chief factor responsible for creation is right 
referred to as the mother of the universe. 

Lakshmi is Samasta-jananee (sloka 6). If the Lord is t 
Father of the world, She is the Mother. 

6. pumsani-bhogaapavargavidhaayinee 

Daya's capacity to confer all the earthly pleasures and al 
the bliss of moksha on her votaries and followers has been des 
with in great detail before. That is concisely recapitulated he 
by the expression punisaam-bhoga-apavarga-vidhaayinee, Confen 
of bhoga (earthly pleasures) and apavarga (mokshananda) < 
human beings. In fact in the very first sloka (10) about Daya 
tbis stotra, it was said " sootim-apavarga-trivargayoho " 

Lakshmi similarly is the conferrer of bhoga and apavar| 
Lakshmi-kataaksha as every one knows brings wealth, happine 
and comfort in its wake. And in the redemption of souls ai 
giving them a place in Paramapada, She is along with the Lo 
the sole authority and power. So She too is a bhoga-apavarg 
vidhayinee. Alavandar has enjoyed this greatness of Sri or Lakshi 
in his Chatussloki, and following him, Alwan, Bhattar, and Desi] 
have elaborated it in their works. 

The sloka winds up by stating that Daya manifests hers< 
with a Vigraha (vyakti) or form of her own accord Vyakti 
swayam bibharshi. This is a nice way of referring to Daya all 
as a Swayam vyakta, even like Lord Srinivasa (sloka 9). 

The words vitamasi andpade, or, if they are to be taken togeth 
as a compound word, vitamasipade, appear rather unintelligib 
to us here. Vitamasipadam is Vaikunta the place devoid ' 
tamas (darkness and ignorance). To say that Daya manifes 
herself with a vigraha or form only in Vaikunta could not h& 
been intended by the poet. Vitamasi-pade may be taken to me* 
in places or spots where there is no tamas. It is only in such plao 
that Daya's form is felt and experienced as a fact. Elsewhere ar 
to people who are blinded by tamas, she is not, and she will h^ 
no form either. 

This sloka can be seen to be an elaboration of the 6th sloka < 
this stotra. This is the Dhyana-sloka for Daya Devi. Note tl 
two vocatives in this sloka. Devi! and Daye! The sloka is pr< 



DAYAA SATAKAM 127 

addressed to Lakshmi as well as to Daya. The inter- 
^eableness is indicated by the trick of using two vocatives. 



f: <W 



3m udayinas-siddhaayaavishkritaascha subhaalayaa 
vividha vibhavawoohaavaasaaha par am chapadam vibhohoi 
<agirimukheshveteshvichchaavadhipratilabdhaye 
3ridhavinihi1aa nissrenistvam Dayel nijaparvabhihin (73) 

Daya Devi! For people to attain in full their heart's desires, 
ots (or places) of which Vrishagiri is foremost, such as (1) aus- 
us temples (where the Lord manifests himself in Archa form) 
ding Swayam Vyakta stalas and stalas discovered by siddhas 

(2) the varied and various vihhavavataara forms (3) vyuha 
s (4) haarda or antaryami forms and (5) even that transcendent 
mapada, where-all the Lord resides, you stand like a strong 
sturdy ladder, having several rungs and levels of your own for 

help and aid. 

In this sloka Desika has mentioned the Pancha-roopas 
te five forms that the Lord assumes as postulated by the Pancha- 
LS and enjoyed by the Alwars. He has given the pride of place 
ngst them all to the Moorthy or form of Lord Srinivasa. Note 
hagiri-mukheshu-etheshu. ^W^t*^ These headed by 
hagiri or Tirumala. It is usual with several devotees of Lord 
ivasa to rank Tirumala as the first and foremost among all 
pies. But here we see Desika definitely ranking this Divya 
a as the first and foremost among all the fivefold spots where 
Lord manifests Himself in His five forms. 
(1) He starts with the Subhaalayaas, auspicious temples, where 
Lord resides in His archa form. These temples are classified 
iwayamvyaktha, Saiddha, Daiva, Arsha, and Maanusha. In 
first of them the manifestation is made on His own initiative, 
le Saiddha, Daiva and Arsha are spots where He has disclosed 
iself in answer to a prayer or request from a Siddha, .Deva 
Rishi respectively. Maanusha refers to spots consecrated by 
17 



12g DAYAA SATAKAM 

man by inviting the Lord according to the Agamas to come am 
dwell in a particular vigraha chosen by him. The use of the won 
4 aadi ' after the word Siddha is intended to take in the other classi 
fications. Siddhadi Siddha etc. 

Next are clubbed the Vibhava, Vyuha and Haarda forms 
The word Vivida meaning several, diverse, precedes them all. Th< 
various Vibhava forms, Vyuha forms and aavaasa forms. Vibhav* 
roopa is the form taken on by the Lord when He came into the 
world as Rama, Krishna etc. This manifestation is enjoyed ir 
extenso in the next and ninth decad of this stotra. 

Vyuha forms are mainly fourfold Vasudeva, Sankarshana 
Pradyumoa and Aniruddha forms. Vyuha also takes in theii 
elaborations into the twelve forms of Kesava, Narayana, Madhava 
etc. Dwadasa nama forms. They are all adopted by the Lord 
for the edification of those devotees who like to revel in Dhyana 01 
unruffled contemplation of the Lord. 

Aavasa srRW is the word that follows next. This word 
literally means a house, a habitation, an abode. In this context, 
this word must be taken to indicate the residence in the human 
heart in the form of an antaryami. As the four other forms are 
mentioned by name, and as this word is a general word capable 
of giving this particular meaning also, we must understand it as a 
reference to the antaryami form. It has been taken by some com- 
mentators as being qualified by the two words preceding it viz.; 
Vibhava and Vyuha. It is better to interpret it as the abode in 
the heart. 

Paramapada comes last in the enumeration and it has a ^r 
attached to it. qt ^ q^ Even that transcendental spot. 



The Etheshu rr^| meaning all these is governed by Vrishagirl 
mukheshu. These headed by, or led by, Vrishagiri. That is the 
importance and glory that Desika sees in Tirumala. 

It is in these several spots that the upaasaka or aspirant has 
to obtain his heart's desire (Ichchavadhi) and Daya helps him 
to seek out those several spots, or such of them as are desired. 
And with that end in view she stands like a ladder or staircase 
(fWftr) in front of the aspirant. A ladder has got joints or 
rungs. A staircase has steps, qcf refers to a joint or step. By 
her steps or stages, Daya helps the aspirants at all levels. The 



DAYAA SATAKAM 129 

TIZ is dridha-vinihita stoutly and strongly tied together. All 
teps are so tightly strung together that it does not matter 
i step or rung one is on. It is a single ladder. Dhrida- 
ita may also be taken to mean safely and securely placed. 
ladder will not slip while one is using it, and there is no 
;e for a crash. 

\ ladder or a staircase is as useful for ascending as for des- 
ng. Desika has very naively described Daya as a ladder 
so that it may be understood that Daya is the agency through 
i man may ascend to God, and at the same time that God 
use to descend into man. For, but for Daya how can man 
s to rise aloft into the ethereal heights of spiritual enjoyments ? 
but for Daya where is the chance of the Almighty descending 
e level of man to console and comfort him and ultimately 
him? Like all Desika's upamaas or comparisons this also 
ppropriateness and at the same time sweetness and sublimity. 



(08) 

n iti jagadhrishtyaa kliptair-akliplaphalaantarair 
mativihitair-anyair-dharmaayitaischa yadrchchayaa \ 
atabahuchchhadmaa Padmaasahaaya Dayel swayam 
wadisasi nijaabhipretam naha prasaamyadapatrapan (74) 

3aya of Padmaasahaaya! By various devices and pretexts, 
ished, you find some good in us under various heads such 
) acts done which are recognised by the world as proper and 
orious acts (2) acts done without any idea about the fruits 
rihed therefor (3) good acts done without any intention or desire 
any good (4) casual and accidental good deeds committed by 
d (5) similar other acts of ours, and on the strength of such deeds 
estow on us what in your opinion you think is fit and good for us. 

The extent of our desire Ichchaavadhi was mentioned in the 
ous sloka as what determines the extent and content of our 
ation. All the four Purusharthas or whichever out of them 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

nd obtain that, but we do not take any steps to do the needful 
^serving the proper upaaya or means. How can Daya get 
Dse benefits which we have not qualified ourselves for? The 
jr to that question is furnished by this sloka. 

)aya is an adept at finding pretexts and inventing ways and 
s to confer benefits on us. If a person in power takes kindly 
, he says he has seen some good in us and rewards us for it. 
y be we really did something good, or it may be that out of 
Dod feelings towards us, he has put a kindly interpretation 
me unwitting act of ours. Daya is likened to such a person 
s sloka. 

Vfter all she is the Daya of the Lord of this universe. He 
>t afford to be capricious: He cannot and ought not to be 
il. He is also the law-giver and He has to enforce the laws 
ulgated by Himself. He has to reward the virtuous and punish 
tcked. If we are virtuous it is all right; we easily get rewarded. 
/e are riot virtuous; we are wicked by temperament and pro- 
:y. Yet we desire only benefits, and are afraid of getting 
hed. After ages and ages of indifference to the Lord and His 
, we have now come to realise that our safety and future 
ion lie in Their bands alone. We unreservedly surrender 
Ives to Them. But before the Lord protects us, He will 
i to be satisfied that we have done some good deeds and there- 
leserve sympathetic and kindly treatment. It is here Daya 
steps in, and very dexterously discovers some good in us. 
idma ^r is a pretext, a guise, Parinata-bahu-chchadma 
5 4 of various and diverse pretexts.' What are they? The 
efers to four of them specifically and adds one generically. 

lukrita g^ is of several kinds. The first of them is 
angika Sukrita STRffw *J^T good deeds which according 
5 world's standards are calculated for the welfare (hita) of 
> ul fog"-,) building temples, erecting tanks for public use etc. 
is referred to here as Hitam-iti-jagad-drishtya~kliptaihi r done 
tat the world regards as calculated to promote the welfare 
5 doer. 



'he next is known as aanushangika sukrita s 
: doing a good act with a particular purpose or for a particular 
.t so happens that a secondary and unthought of good deed 
j to be performed. You feed a hungry man: with the food 



OAYAA SATAKAM 131 

you provide, he feeds his wife and child, whom you never thought 
of while giving the food to the man whose hunger you wanted 
to appease. This unth ought of good is a by-product of an intended 
good. This is spoken of as aklipta-phalaantaraihi 3T3FT<r 
unthought of other object. 



The third is abuddhipoorvakasukrita SRfeq^P' ^TcT some 
good which simply occurs without one's knowledge or volition. 
While going to attend a conference in Benares a person happens 
to die on the banks of the Ganges. He would never have bargained 
for it. This is amati-vihitaihi s^ftf fa f^<d : done without an idea 
or thought of one's own. 

The next is yaadrichchika sukrita sjref^W g^cT casual 
or accidental. You go pursuing your cow which has run away 
from your cowshed. It goes round a temple and in following 
it you perform a pradakshina of that temple. Or, while fishing 
in the sea you fall into it by accident on the sacred Mahodaya 
day. This is dharmaitihi-yadrchchayaa. 

In addition to the above four, Desika has added anyaihi sp^: 
others as well. They may take in consciously done good acts 
Saamaanya-buddhi-moola-Sukrita, which in some cases earn great 
merit. You invite a friend whom you have not seen for years 
and give him food and lodging for some days. He happens to be a 
Sadhu. You have really done a very meritorious thing by giving 
him food and shelter though you did so only in the view that he 
was an old time friend. 

Daya Devi thus looks into all our acts and doings with a 
magnifying glass, and catching hold of some small unthinking 
act of ours, construes the same in one of the above modes, as a 
very lofty and meritorious act, and recommends to the Lord for 
our reprieve and redemption. Thereby she confers on us what 
she thinks is good for us. Nijaabhipretam naha pradisasi-- 
f^TTf^f^r T: srferftr you give what in your view is best for us. 
Or you give what in our opinion is desirable. Nija may be taken 
as referring to Daya or to us ^T: in the sloka. 

In this Daya evidently shows herself rather fnonHT shameless. 
Banishing bashfulness and shame she has to work like this to bring 
about our welfare. Li sloka 71 it was Saahasa 3TT^r. Here 
it is shamelessness on the part of Daya. To multiply our small good 
deeds, to magnify them and to show them off to our best advantage, 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

ad obtain that, but we do not take any steps to do the needful 
>serving the proper upaaya or means. How can Daya get 
)se benefits which we have not qualified ourselves for ? The 
;r to that question is furnished by this sloka. 

)aya is an adept at finding pretexts and inventing ways and 
5 to confer benefits on us. If a person in power takes kindly 
he says he has seen some good in us and rewards us for it. 
y be we really did something good, or it may be that out of 
>od feelLigs towards us, he has put a kindly interpretation 
me unwitting act of ours. Daya is likened to such a person 
s sloka. 

ifter all she is the Daya of the Lord of this universe. He 
>t afford to be capricious: He cannot and ought not to be 
,1. He is also the law-giver and He has to enforce the laws 
ulgated by Himself. He has to reward the virtuous and punish 
icked. If we are virtuous it is all right; we easily get rewarded. 
f& are riot virtuous ; we are wicked by temperament and pro- 
y. Yet we desire only benefits, and are afraid of getting 
hied. After ages and ages of indifference to the Lord and His 
, we have now come to realise that our safety and future 
ion lie in Their hands alone. We unreservedly surrender 
Ives to Them. But before the Lord protects us, He will 
to be satisfied that we have done some good deeds and there- 
ieserve sympathetic and kindly treatment. It is here Daya 
steps in, and very dexterously discovers some good in us. 
idma ^r is a pretext, a guise, Parinata-bahu-chchadma 
5 'of various and diverse pretexts/ What are they? The 
efers to four of them specifically and adds one generically. 

ukrita g^RT is of several kinds. The first of them is 
angika Sukrita STRffrpfr ^3" good deeds which according 
^ world's standards are calculated for the welfare (hita) of 
ml (e,g.,) building temples, erecting tanks for public use etc. 
is referred to here as Hitam-iti-jagad-drishtya-kliptaihi,-done 
lat the world regards as calculated to promote the welfare 
5 doer. 

"he next is known as aanushangika sukrita 



? doing a good act with a particular purpose or for a particular 
t so happens that a secondary and unthought of good deed 
5 to be performed. You feed a hungry man: with the food 



fou provide, he feeds his wile and cMd, whom you never tnougnt 
}f while giving the food to the man whose hunger you wanted 
:o appease. This unth ought of good is a by-product of an intended 
sjood. This is spoken of as aklipta-phalaantaraihi sresr^r 
unthought of other object. 



The third is abuddhipoorvakasukrita 3T3^<T3% ^cT some 
*ood which simply occurs without one's knowledge or volition. 
While going to attend a conference in Benares a person happens 
to die on the banks of the Ganges. He would never have bargained 
For it. This is amati-vihitaihi s^^rf^f: done without an idea 
or thought of one's own. 

The next is yaadrichchika sukrita qrcf^F g^cT casual 
or accidental. You go pursuing your cow which has run away 
from your cowshed. It goes round a temple and in following 
it you perform a pradakshina of that temple. Or, while fishing 
in the sea you fall into it by accident on the sacred Mahodaya 
day. This is dharmaitihi-yadrchchayaa. 

In addition to the above four, Desika has added anyaihi 3PT: 
others as well. They may take in consciously done good acts 
Saamaanya-buddhi-moola-Sukrita, which in some cases earn great 
merit. You invite a friend whom you have not seen for years 
and give him food and lodgug for some days. He happens to be a 
Sadhu. You have really done a very meritorious thing by giving 
him food and shelter though you did so only in the view that he 
was an old time friend. 

Da>a Devi thus looks into all our acts and doings with a 
magnifying glass, and catching hold of some small unthinking 
act of ours, construes the same in one of the above modes, as a 
very lofty and meritorious act, and recommends to the Lord for 
our reprieve and redemption. Thereby she confers on us what 
she thinks is good for us. Nijaabhipretam naha pradisasi 
fosrrfttftf T: srferftr you give what in your view is best for us. 
Or you give what in our opinion is desirable. Nija may be taken 
as referring to Daya or to us *T: in the sloka. 

In this Daya evidently shows herself rather ft^TW shameless. 
Banishing bashfulness and shame she has to work like this to bring 
about our welfare. In sloka 71 it was Saahasa *TT^ET. Here 
it is shamelessness on the part of Daya. To multiply our small good 
deeds, to magnify them and to show them off to our best advantage, 



130 DAYAA SATAKAM 

this and obtain that, but we do not take any steps to do the needful 
by observing the proper upaaya or means. How can Daya get 
us those benefits which we have not qualified ourselves for? The 
answer to that question is furnished by this sloka. 

Daya is an adept at finding pretexts and inventing ways and 
means to confer benefits on us. If a person in power takes kindly 
to us, he says he has seen some good in us and rewards us for it. 
It may be we really did something good, or it may be that out of 
his good feelings towards us, he has put a kindly interpretation 
on some unwitting act of ours. Daya is likened to such a person 
in this sloka. 

After all she is the Daya of the Lord of this universe. He 
cannot afford to be capricious: He cannot and ought not to be 
partial. He is also the law-giver and He has to enforce the laws 
promulgated by Himself. He has to reward the virtuotis and punish 
the wicked. If we are virtuous it is all right ; we easily get rewarded. 
But we are not virtuous; we are wicked by temperament and pro- 
pensity. Yet we desire only benefits, and are afraid of getting 
punished. After ages and ages of indifference to the Lord and His 
Daya, we have now come to realise that our safety and future 
salvation lie in Their hands alone. We unreservedly surrender 
ourselves to Them. But before the Lord protects us, He will 
desire to be satisfied that we have done some good deeds and there- 
fore deserve sympathetic and kindly treatment. It is here Daya 
Devi steps in, and very dexterously discovers some good in us. 
Chchadma ^ is a pretext, a guise, Parinata-bahu-chchadma 
means * of various and diverse pretexts/ What are they? The 
poet refers to four of them specifically and adds one generically. 

Sukrita g^r is of several kinds. The first of them is 
Praasangika Sukrita smjfw S^cT good deeds which according 
to the world's standards are calculated for the welfare (hita) of 
the soul (e,g.,) building temples, erecting tanks for public use etc. 
This is referred to here as Hitam4ti-jagad-drishtya~kliptaihi,-done 
as what the world regards as calculated to promote the welfare 
of the doer. 

The next is known as aanushangika sukrita 



While doing a good act with a particular purpose or for a particular 
end, it so happens that a secondary and unthought of good deed 
comes to be performed. You feed a hungry man: with the food 



DAYAA SATAKAM 131 

you provide, he feeds his wife and child, whom you never thought 
of while giving the food to the man whose hunger you wanted 
to appease. This unthought of good is a by-product of an intended 
good. This is spoken of as aklipta-phalaantaraihi ^"MM" 
unthought of other object. 



The third is abuddhipoorvakasukrita 3RfeT^ *PKT some 
good which simply occurs without one's knowledge or volition. 
While going to attend a conference in Benares a person happens 
to die on the banks of the Ganges. He would never have bargained 
for it. This is amati-vihitaihi smfdfaf^d: done without an idea 
or thought of one's own. 

The next is yaadrichchika sukrita ^Kpo^ *P^ casual 
or accidental. You go pursuing your cow which has run away 
from your cowshed. It goes round a temple and in following 
it you perform a pradakshina of that temple. Or, while fishing 
in the sea you fall into it by accident on the sacred Mahodaya 
day. This is dharmaitihi-yadrchchayaa. 

In addition to the above four, Desika has added anyaihi 3n4: 
others as well. They may take in consciously done good acts 
Saamaanya-buddhi-moola-Sukrita, which in some cases earn great 
merit. You invite a friend whom you have not seen for years 
and give him food and lodgLig for some days. He happens to be a 
Sadhu. You have really done a very meritorious thing by giving 
him. food and shelter though you did so only in the view that he 
was an old time friend. 

Da>a Devi thus looks into all our acts and doings with a 
magnifying glass, and catching hold of some small unthinking 
act of ours, construes the same in one of the above modes, as a 
very lofty and meritorious act, and recommends to the Lord for 
our reprieve and redemption. Thereby she confers on us what 
she thinks is good for us. Nijaabhipretam naha pradisasi - 
f^rTfTTW ^T: 3TfoT% you give what in your view is best for us. 
Or you give what in our opinion is desirable. Nija may be taken 
as referring to Daya or to us ^: in the sloka. 

In this Daya evidently shows herself rather Pi 01 W shameless. 
Banishing bashfulness and shame she has to work like this to bring 
about our welfare. Li sloka 71 it was Saahasa^Tf^ Here 
it is shamelessness on the part of Daya. To multiply our small good 
deeds, to magnify them and to show them off to our best advantage, 



t wnere we never dreamt of doing any smal 
t of courage, resourcefulness and dash : Da 
he not Padmasahayakaruna? the Karuna of 
ma? Lakshmfs ways are copied by Daya. 
d find good in the demons that threatened 
day in and day out, and plead for their proted 
ae mighty Hanuman, who wanted to crush t 
* cruelty towards Jagan-mata ? Contact wit 
red for Daya that selfsame characteristic of : 
ring, good where it is not, or at least latent, 
good. 



dhi Sivair-aisvairyaatmaanubhootirasair-janaan 
ahridaydm ihopachchandyaishaam asangadasaat 
itajanataateerthasnaanakramakshap itainasaam 
vitarasi Dayeveetaatankaa Vrishaadripateh-pada 
Daya Devi, in regard to people in this world 
ures of aiswarya and kaivaiya ^5RT and ^sn?sr \ 
ose of the status of Brahma and Siva, you (s 

to get unconnected with such desires, (exten 
r on them those pleasures, in order to please tl 
< them unto yourself, so that, ultimately you 
"earlessly confer on them the pleasure of attaii 

Srinivasa, the Lord of Vrishaadri, even like : 
the in the gauges In order to get rid of his thirs 
ng to secure for him the fuller henefits of Gang 
iriving him of his sins. 

The words nijaabhipretam Pradisasi employed 
are elaborated openly in this sloka. Tho 
>yed in the previous sloka in a dubious way 
lesire of the aspirant, as also of Daya. But tl 
> to realise her own ideas of the welfare of 
[oka points out in a very clear manner. Incic 
te idea contained in the term Bhakta-chchanda 
topic of this decad. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

The people of this world prefer aiswarya, wealth, to all - 
things. Aiswarya here must be taken to be a compendious 
indicating all worldly pleasures. The kaivalya which comes 
is the stage where the aspirant to spiritual eminence indulg 
the realisation of the pleasures of the self, bereft of God-assock 
To the true devotee of God, even kaivalya is not a stage \ 
aspiring for. It is as good, or as bad, and certainly as evane 
and unsatisfying, as aiswarya itself. The opening words o 
sloka show that people who are spiritually minded prefer 
pleasures of wealth and Aatmanubhava even to the exalted posi 
held by Brahma and Rudra. It shows that people are so t 
in by what this world can offer that they do not even desir 
other-worldly pleasures like those of Brahma and Rudra. 

Daya Devi understands correctly the desire of the p 
of the "world to obtain earthly wealth, or in a few and rare 
the supreme satisfaction of Aathmanubhava STTWR^". Perse 
Daya Devi, who knows the real value to be attached to thes 
contrasted with the pleasures attainable at the Feet of the 1 
is not happy a.bout the craving that people entertain for 
pleasures. But just like a fond mother, who pretends to s; 
the expressed desires of the child, all the while having in her 
th idea of converting it later on to her views. Daya appea 
grant what they want, so that her hold on them may become firr 
they may learn to look to her for everything they desire to have, 
illustration about conferring punya and dispelling sin on an 
vidual who does not desire punya or to get rid of his sin, but 
feels thirsty, shows the way Daya Devi sets about it. Just 
person interested in g. thirsty man's soul takes him to the s 
theerthas like the Ganga, and asks that person to quench his 
with the water of the Ganga, so that he may not only have his 
quenched but also obtain punya, so too Daya Devi eggs o: 
votaries to appeal to her (and thereby to the Lord) to secure 
hearts' desire with the idea of ultimately making them desii 
Lord for the Lord's own sake. It is Daya's attempt to cc 
the first three classes of men denoted by Lord Sri Krishna as A 
3TTf: Jignasu fefT^ and Artharthi spqfrff into persons belo 
to the last class namely gnani fnfa". 

The word ' veetaatanka,' which literally means having dis; 



132 DAYAA SATAKAM 

even where we never dreamt of doing any small good, requires 
a lot of courage, resourcefulness and dash: Daya has them all. 
Is she not Padmasahayakaruna? the Karuna of the Consort of 
Padma? Lakshmi's ways are copied by Daya. Who but a Sita 
could find good in the demons that threatened and frightened 
her day in and day out, and plead for their protection at the hands 
of the mighty Hanuman, who wanted to crush them ard avenge 
their cruelty towards Jagan-mata? Contact with Lakshmi has 
secured for Daya that selfsame characteristic of finding, nay d ; s- 
covering, good where it is not, or at least latent, and rewarding 
that good. 



tew 

Atividhi Sivair-aisvairyaatmaanubhootirasair-janaan 

ahridaydm ihopachchandyaishaam asangadasaarthinee \ 

Trishitajanataateerlhasnaanakramakshapitainasaam 

vitarasi Dayeveetaatankaa Vrishaadripateh-padam (75) 

Daya Devi, in regard to people in this world who prefer the 
pleasures of aiswarya and kaivalya j^gtfi and *F3?tr as even superior 
to those of the status of Brahma and Siva, you (secretly) desiring 
them to get unconnected with such desires, (externally) appear to 
confer on them those pleasures, in order to please them and thereby 
annex them unto yourself, so that, ultimately you may completely 
and fearlessly confer on them the pleasure of attaining the Feet of 
Lord Srinivasa, the Lord of Vrishaadri, even like asking a person 
to baihe in the gauges in order to get rid of his thirst, all the while 
desiring to secure for him the fuller benefits of Ganga-snana capable 
of depriving him of his sins. 

The words nijaabhipretam Pradisasi employed in the previous 
sloka are elaborated openly in this sloka. Those words were 
employed in the previous sloka in a dubious way to suggest the 
true desire of the aspirant, as also of Daya. But that Daya really 
works to realise her own ideas of the welfare of the upaasaka, 
this sloka points out in a very clear manner. Incidentally it gives 
out the idea contained in the term Bhakta-chchandaanuvarti which 
is the topic of this decad. 



132 DAYAA SATAKAM 

even where we never dreamt of doing any small good, requires 
a lot of courage, resourcefulness and dash : Daya has them all. 
Is she not Padmasahayakaruna ? the Karuna of the Consort of 
Padma? Lakshmi's ways are copied by Daya. Who but a Sita 
could find good in the demons that threatened and frightened 
her day in and day out, and plead for their protection at the hands 
of the mighty Hanuman, who wanted to crush them ard avenge 
their cruelty towards Jagein-mata? Contact with Lakshmi has 
secured for Daya that selfsame characteristic of finding, nay d ; s- 
covering, good where it is not, or at least latent, and rewarding 
that good. 



3$ 

Atividhi Sivair-aisvairyaatmaanubhootirasair-janaan 

ahridaydm ihopachchandyaishaam asangadasaarthinee \ 

Trishitajanataateerthasnaanakramakshapitainasaam 

vftarasi Dayeveetaatankaa Vrishaadripateh-padam (75) 

Daya Devi, in regard to people in this world who prefer the 
pleasures of aiswarya and kaivalya fr&w and $3?q as even superior 
to those of the status of Brahma and Siva, you (secretly) desiring 
them to get unconnected with sisch desires, (externally) appear to 
confer on them those pleasures, in order to please them and thereby 
annex them unto yourself, so that, ultimately you may completely 
and fearlessly confer on them the pleasure of attaining the Feet of 
Lord Srinivasa, the Lord of Vrishaadri, even like asking a person 
to bathe in the ganges in order to get rid of his thirst, all the while 
desiring to secure for him the fuller benefits of Ganga-snana capable 
of depriving him of his sins. 

The words nijaabhipretam Pradisasi employed in the previous 
sloka are elaborated openly in this sloka. Those words were 
employed in the previous sloka in a dubious way to suggest the 
true desire of the aspirant, as also of Daya. But that Daya really 
works to realise her own ideas of the welfare of the upaasaka, 
this sloka points out in a very clear manner. Incidentally it gives 
oat the idea contained in the term Bhakta-chchandaanuvarti which 
is the topic of this decad. 



134 DAYAA SATAKAM 

to work very cleverly, and should avoid the blame that is likel; 
to attach to her in the shape of Vaishamya or partiality. If sb 
bestows her favours on some persons to the exclusion of others 
people will attribute partiality to her. That is why she is ver 
careful to discover some good as set out in the previous sloka 
Desika has very nicely described this in a sloka of his in Sankalpa 
sooryodhaya, where he refers to the Lord protecting us by findinj 
some casual good in us, however unintended it might be : 



^W Ghuna is a particular insect found in timber etc, Ghimak 
shiti ^prf^% therefore means the incision in wood, or the leal 
of a book, made by the insect or worm, and resembling somewha 
the form of a letter. There is a nyaya known as ^ 



which therefore has come to denote any fortuitous or chance 
occurence. The Lord (that is Daya Devi) thus snatches upor 
some occurence in us, and makes us the recipients of benefits and 
rewards. 

Asangadasaarthinee is another very important expression 
in this sloka. While conferring upon us the pleasures of earth 
as desired by us, Daya Devi is desirous of our coming to disregard 
and reject those pleasures, and therefore she is praying for out 
dissociation asanga sr^f^ 1 from them. At the same time in 
order not to lose hold upon us, and to work our welfare and to 
secure to us the lasting good that is in her gift, she appears to satisfy 
our cravings only with a view ultimately to take us to the Feet 
of the Lord, The child refuses to take good food, and insists upon 
enjoying a bite at a very unhealthy and indigestible stuff. The 
mother does not snatch away that stuff immediately, but permits 
the child to have a go at it, and it is only by stages that she weans 
the child from that desire and makes it take to wholesome food. 
Daya Devi, Mother that she is to all of us, works on the same lines, 
and ensures that we safely reach the destination, namely, the Feet 
of the Lord of Vrishaadri 



130 DAYAA SATAKAM 

capacity to purify is the key-note of this sloka, The saokta here 
obviously 15 Saranagati mantra. That is the Aghamarshana 
Sookta. The plunge into Lord Srinivasa with the utterance of 
Saranagatimantra is the bath or plunge talked of here. 

Like children who are afraid to get into water for bathing, 
we are rehjctant to take to this bath, however pleasant, purificatory, 
and beneficial, it may be. So, Daya Devi the fond parent that 
sh is desiring that we should not miss all that, puts us into 
literally throws us into that nectar-ocean. This is indicated 
by the " nihitastvayaa." Here Daya Devi does what her other 
ego, Goda Devi, has done for us in her classical Tiruppavai, taking 
us for that bath along with her and making us bathe. 



A bath usually cools and also purifies the body and spirit. 
But here not only are tapa or heat, and papa or sin, dispelled, but 
Bhaya *T*T or fear is also dispelled. The fear complex that 
has been with us by age-long contact with evil, completely disappears. 
That is shown by the expression Bhava-bhaya-chchittyai. ^r^iir^c4. 

Release from sin of all sorts, and the cleansed state of the 
soul, are indicated by the term mushita-kalusha. Kalusham sRTT 
means dirt, filth, mud, as also sin. Mushita literally means taken 
away, carried off. By contact with the Lord, in the aghamarshana 
way, our sins are forcibly taken away from us, sins from whom 
we have been reluctant to part, all these ages. 

As a result of this bath in the Lord, several exilarating pleasures 
follow, or come of their own accord. They are preludes or fore- 
runners to that great Mokshananda, The upasaka who lias thrown 
himself and plunged into Para Brahmam is filled with several 
such ple^surfsu CWy OTO of them is mentioned here " Svaatmaa- 
nanda" tiK*ni^. The pleasure born out of the true under- 
standing of one's own self as a prakara, or mode, or sesha, of 
Lord Srinivasa. Svaatmq, or one's own atnia, in Visishtadvaita 
connotes Parabrahmam, who is the soul or &tma of the entire 
world, sentient and non-sentient. So Svaatmaanand^ means 
the pleasures of daasya cTTFT or kainkarya. Contrast this word 
Svwtmwmda with th^ mtmmanuhhoQti of the previous sloka. 
There, it was the Qomfemplation of the kevala atma bereft of divine 
content. It wu^ koivqlyE! thw, but not here, 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

r ceases, he is taken straight to the Feet of the Lord. , There 
other cases like those of certain highly developed souls, like 
ima and so on, where the delay will be enormous, as long, 
ibly, as the Mahapralaya itself, which comes once in a mille- 
n. The point to note is that whatever the period of time, 
sver short it may be, or however long it may be, there is a 
tinty here of attainment. The difference in the period of attain- 
t is due to differences in ,the sportiveness 



;da-taranga-parampara of Daya Devi. Like the waves of a 
wir of water, some being small and some being large, the lapse 
me between the performance of saranagati and the attainment 
i,e Lord's Feet, is either short or long according to the Kreeda 
eela of Daya Devi. This again is conditioned by the intensity, 
le absence of it, in the prapanna. The emphasis on the whole 
i the certainty of attainment. The Lord that has created the 
d has promised His feet to those who seek them. The actual 

of attainment alone is left in doubt. Here also the Lord, 
ither Daya Devi, acts according to the desire of the Upasaka. 

is again Bhakta-chchandanuvartana ^rcT^^nFR^f^T. The 
>n who performs prapatti for being taken to the Feet of the 

at once is called ' Aarthaprapanna * STT^R^T. A person who 
>rms saranagati for attaining the feet of the Lord at some future 
is called * druptaprapanna ' ^rw$T. 

This sloka is remnicient of the verse of Tirumazhisai Alwar 
s Naanmugan Tiruvandadi. The language and the sentiment 
iken from there. 



t be today, let it be tomorrow, or let it tarry for some more 
1 am sure to be the recipient of your grace. Desika has 
ituted the Mahapralaya for @)<stf}& %?$/ fidryi, while 
ly adopting the sentiments of today and tomorrow in the 
.r's verse. That is the security that the true devotees of the 
feel, once they have thrown themselves on the mercy of the 
. If Daya Devi guarantees to us all that are to be distributed 
nail and minor gods as stated in the previous sloka, who 
loubt the certainty of the fruits in her own gift? This sloka 
ving as it does the previous sloka, furnishes us an a 
ri pp^cT argument in support of the positive certainty of 
iment of the Feet of the Lord by all those who resort to Daya 



e m ner tor attaining me greatest ot blisses 
nankind, and is in fact the inheritance of manl 

wf 



n ' (<:o 

rax tvatsamprikte Vrishaadnsikhaamanau 
nidhaa dhaaraakaaraa pmseedati hhaavanaa 
?e\ dattuasvaadam vimuktivalaahakam 
irto nidhyaayanti slhiraasayachaatakaahau (80) 

! To all those who centre their minds upon the glo 
Vrishadri Who is intimately associated with y< 
iimilar to the incessant flow of nectar in a very 
will result. Gladdened in every pore and cell of 
he upasakas with their one-pointed devotion tov 
, who is like a cloud showering moksha, and 
ds like the mind of the chataka hird, those great 
ntemplation of that cloud with all their other s 

uched upon the delay that is likely to occur 
masons, between the observance of prapatti or sa 
ittainment of the Feet of the Loid, in the pre 
deals here with the state of mind of the prap 
;riod, As the prapanna has pitched his mind 
5 Lord's lotus feet, and has also performed pn 
he same, his mind will contemplate with pie 
which he is going to attain, may be tomorro 1 
later. Like the Rajakumara, crown-prince, for\ 
.ay has been fixed, .this prapanna will be ever lo 
jreat joy and pleasure to the realisation of his h 
to come. Every moment his mind will be dw 
the pleasure that awaits him. Therefore his 
r devoted towards that Lord who is going tc 
ure. That Lord is Vrishaadrisikhaam^ni-r-the 
adri. And He is sweetened by contact with " 
of the blending of the milk ocean with the i 
t^A^r K^An ^nin\/i>H in a nrevious sloka. Eve 



144 MVAA SAtAKAM 

contemplation of the pleasures of the union with the Lord is like 
the flow of nectar. Bhaktiyoga has been said somewhere to be 
the ceaseless and incessant contemplation and flow of love like 
the incessant and unbroken flow of oil or ghee: Thailadaaraavat- 
avichchannasmrutisantana^^T^nXTW srf^^^f^rff'T- Desika 
here uses the word ' Sudhaadhaara ' gsrrsTR or the flow of nectar, 
to illustrate the flow of love towards the Lord. That contempla- 
tion or bhavana will be clear and pellucid. Valmiki has used a 
simile comparing the clear-as-crystal waters of the Tamasa river to 
the mind of Sanmanushya. We are reminded of that statement of 
Valmiki by this sloka which talks of * prasrimarasudhaadhaara 
praseedati bhaavanaa ' 

The pure and uncontaminated state of the prapanna in the 
interim period, that is after prapatti and before the attainment of 
the Lord's feet, is again likened to the state of the chaataka bird- 
vide sloka 58 ante. Here, once again Lord Srinivasa is likened 
to a cloud; only ft is stated here that the rain that flows from this 
cloud is * Vimukti ' finrlw or moksha. c Nibhruta garutaha ' means 
movementless wing of a bird. So the Sat of the upanishads, San- 
manushya of Valmiki, and the prapanna here, desists from flight 
into other spheias by (inhibiting) withdrawing the wings to attain 
concentration in contemplation. The enjoyment that the praparna 
attains during this period is almost akin to mokshananda. Except 
for the contact with the body, he is really a mukta, a jeevanmukta 
if one may so call him. 

The Lord's desire or iehcha, that Daya is, has been shown 
in this decad, which closes with this sloka, to function in such a 
manner that those who are the objects of that ichcha or desire 
are able to cast off all sins and are assured of complete release 
from the cycle of births and deaths, and union with the Lord at 
some time or other in the future, about the duration of which 
time they need not bother, because at the end of it realisation is 
certain; and what is more, even before the realisation comes to 
them in full form, they enjoy all the benefits of that realisation even 
now, and even here. That is why Daya Devi pretending to give 
him what he desires, gives him whc.t in her view is the greatest and 
highest good. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

NINTH DECAD. 



Lord's unbounded kindness towards prapannas was very 
well illustrated by the two previous decads, which respectively 
iealt with (a) His essential nature of dispelling sins and their un- 
pleasant consequences (anishta) and (b) His overwhelming love 
towards the prapannas, which is willing to adapt itself to their 
lesires with a view to ultimately sublimate those desires into God- 
ove. This idea has been well expressed by Desika elsewhere 
ilso. Vide Dramidopanishad Saram: 



a[f| 



* With a view to dispel and banish the anishtas of jnen and in order 
:o see that their desire for worldly pleasures is gradually put down, 
He the Lord of all, who has the entire threefold chetana and ache- 
:ana creation under His own sway, yields Himself up to the varie- 
gated desires of His followers/' (Those who are interested in 
3ursuing the theory that is being elaborated in this commentary, 
that the theme for each of the ten decads of this stotra is furnished 
3V the respective themes of the ten centunis of Nammalwafs Tiru- 
^oimozhi, as laid down by Desika, will have noticed the use of 
several identical words and phrases in this sloka of Dramidopanishad 
Saram and the 81st sloka of Daya Satakam). 

This ninth decad furnishes the reason why the Lord is so 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

' ceases, he is taken straight to the Feet of the Lord. There 
>ther cases like those of certain highly developed souls, like 
ma and so on, where the delay will be enormous, as long, 
.bly, as the Mahapralaya itself, which conies once in a mille- 
i. The point to note is that whatever the period of time, 
;ver short it may be, or however- long it may be, there is a 
inty here of attainment. The difference in the period of attain- 
is due to differences in the sportiveness 



da-taranga-parampara of Daya Devi. Like the waves of a 
voir of water, some being small and some being large, the lapse 
ne between the performance of saranagati and the attainment 
e Lord's Feet, is either short or long according to the Kreeda 
>ela of Daya Devi. This again is conditioned by the intensity, 
e absence of it, in the prapanna. The emphasis on the whole 

the certainty of attainment. The Lord that has created the 
i has promised His feet to those who seek them. The actual 
of attainment alone is left in doubt. Here also the Lord, 
ther Daya Devi, acts according to the desire of the L 7 pasaka. 

is again Bhakta-chchandanuvartana ^cr^^N^d^T. The 
m who performs prapatti for being taken to the Feet of the 
at once is called * Aarthaprapanna ' sn^STW. A person who 
Tins saranagati for attaining the feet of the Lord at some future 
is called c druptaprapanna ' ^fTOST. 

This sloka is remnicient of the verse of Tirumazhisai Alwar 
3 Naanmugan Tiruvandadi. The language and the sentiment 
iken from there. 

prr ZfarGuj <^&, |) esfi 



t be today, let it be tomorrow, or let it tarry for some more 
1 am sure to be the recipient of your grace. Desika has 
ituted the Mahapralaya for gjorfte SjSgi $<svj t while 
y adopting the sentiments of today and tomorrow in the 
r's verse. That is the security that the true devotees of the 
feel, once they have thrown themselves on the mercy of the 
, If Daya Devi guarantees to us all that are to be distributed 
nail and minor gods as stated in the previous sloka, who 
loubt the certainty of the fruits in her own gift? This sloka 
ving as it does the previous sloka, furnishes us an a 
ri fer^T argument in support of the positive certainty of 
iment of the Feet of the Lord by all those who resort to Daya 



OYAA SATAKAM 143 

and take refuge in her for attaining the greatest of blisses that 
can be got by mankind, and is in fact the inheritance of mankind. 



Pranihitadhiyaam tvatsamprikte Vrishaadrisikhaamanau 
prasrimarasudhaa dhaaraakaaraa praseedati bhaavanaa \ 

Dn'dhamiti Dayel dattuawaadam vimuktivalaahakam 

nibhritagamto nidhyaayanti sthiraasayachaatakaaha\\ (80) 

Day a Devi! To all those who centre their minds upon the glorious 
Crest-jewel of Vrishadri Who is intimately associated with you, 
contemplation similar to the incessant flow of nectar in a very fine 
and clear form will result. Gladdened in every pore and cell of their 
body thereby, the upasakas with their one-pointed devotion towards 
Lord Srinivasa, who is like a cloud showering moksha, and with 
unswerving minds like the mind of the chataka bird, those great ones 
revel in the contemplation of that cloud with all their other senses 
drawn in, 

Having touched upon the delay that is likely to occur, for 
ever so many reasons, between the observance of prapatti or sarana- 
gati, and the attainment of the Feet of the Loid, in' the previous 
sloka, Desika deals here with the state of mind of the prapanna 
during that period, As the prapanna has pitched his mind and 
heart upon the Lord's lotus feet, and has also performed prapatti 
for attaining the same, his mind will contemplate with pleasure 
on those Feet which he is going to attain, may be tomorrow, or 
may be a little later. Like the Rajakumara, crown-prince, for whose 
coronation a day has been fixed, .this prapanna will be ever looking 
forward with great joy and pleasure to the realisation of his heart's 
desire that has to come. Every moment his mincL will be dwelling 
happily upon the pleasure that awaits him. Therefore his mind 
will be wholly devoted towards that Lord who is going to give 
him that pleasure. That Lord is Vrishaadrisikhaamani the crest 
jewel of Vrishadri. And He is sweetened by contact with Daya. 
The sweetness of the blending of the milk ocean with the nectar 
ocean has already been enjoyed in a previous sloka. Even the 
19 



144 >AAA SAtAKAJVt 

Contemplation of the pleasures of the union with the Lord is like 
the flow of nectar. Bhaktiyoga has been said somewhere to be 
the ceaseless and incessant contemplation and flow of love like 
the incessant and unbroken flow of oil or ghee: Thailadaaraavat- 
ivichchannasmrutisantanat^rsnTRcT srM^RFTfiRRIT^. Desika 
lere uses the word ' Sudhaadhaara ' gsTTSTTC or the flow of nectar, 
;o illustrate the flow of love towards the Lord. That contempla- 
ion or bhavana will be clear and pellucid. Yalmiki has used a 
limile comparing the clear-as-crystal waters of the Tamasa river to 
he mind of Sanmanushya. We are reminded of that statement of 
/almiki by this sloka which talks of * prasrimarasudhaadhaara 
>raseedati bhaavanaa ' 

The pure and uncontaminated state of the prapanna in the 
titerim period, that is after prapatti and before the attainment of 
he Lord's feet, is again likened to the state of the chaataka bird 
ide sloka 58 ante. Here, once again Lord Srinivasa is likened 

a cloud; only 5t is stated here that the rain that flows from this 
loud is c Vimukti ' ftfl% or moksha. * Nibhruta garutaha ' means 
cioveflientless wing ofa bird. So the Sat of the upanishads, San- 
aanushya of Valmiki, and the prapanna here, desists from flight 
ato other Spheies by (inhibiting) withdrawing the wings to attain 
oncentration in contemplation. The enjoyment that the praparna 
ttains during this period is almost akin to mokshananda. Except 
ar the contact with the body, he is really a mukta, a jeevanmukta 
' one may so call him. 

The Lord's desire or ichcha, that Daya is, has been shown 

1 this decad, which closes with this sloka, to function in such a 
lanner that those who are the objects of that ichcha or desire 
re able to cast off all sins and are assured of complete release 
x>m the cycle of births and deaths, and union with the Lord at 
>me time or other in the future, about the duration of which 
me they need not bother, because at the end of it realisation is 
;rtain; and what is more, even before the realisation comes to 
iem in full form, they enjoy all the benefits of that realisation even 
3w, and even here. That is why Daya Devi pretending to give 
:m what he desires, gives him wha in her view is the greatest and 
hest good. 



146 DAYAA SATAKAM 

--a friend whore friendship is not caused by any extraneous cause, 
consideration, or circumstance, but is a friendship without any 
reason or cause Avyaaja Sauhaarda sfaijN^ft^R. This is best 
illustrated by His coming into, the, world taking various forms. 
As Nammalwar has put it, there is no form of existence which He 
has not adopted. OT/5/$63nr> (oiun-fosfltL/LLn-uJu iSlp^^mu (Born out 
of every conceivable womb). The upanishad praises Him as one 
who obtains lustre and glory by being born ^T^TZTFT ^r^f%" SfTWR: 
Consistently w ; th Desika's view that every merit in the Lord, 
that makes Him what He is, is to be traced to the presence of Daya, 
he sets out in this decad to-enjoy the avatars, and to show the part 
played by Dnya in each avatar. Already in sloka 35 it has been 
said that the Lord takes His several avatars only at the behest, 
of Daya Devi. That idea is elaborated in this decad. Most 
appropriately the metre employed for the slokas of this decad 
is Prithvi ^rfM^.. Prithvi means earth. Avatara ST^RTR-" 
is a descent into the earth. Prithvi is thus the topic of this decad, 
and it ?s also the metre employed for this decad. This is the last 
of the series of five different metres, all of which have 17 syllables 
in apaada or quarter, employed in this stotra. 

The consummate art of the poet can be seen from the 
following words all of which are synonymous with prithvi being 
employed in the slokas of this decad : 

Sloka 81 Jagat, Kshiti; 82 Jagat; 83 Kshiti, medini; 85 
Jagat; 86 Kshiti; 87 Jagat, Kshiti; 88 Jagat; 89 Visvambhara; 
Jagat; 90 Bhuvi. 

The omission of a word synonymous with prithvi in sloka 
84 relating to Narasimhavatara must be deliberate; probably to 
indicate that as per the boon accorded to Hiranyakasipu, he could 
not be killed on earth. 



Kripel vigatavelayaa kritasamagraposhau-tvayaa 
Kalijvalunadurgate jagati kaalameghaayitam \ 

Vrishakshitidharaadhishu sthitipadeshu saanuplavair- 

Vrishiiadripanvigrahair-vyapagataakhilaavagi-ahaihi n (8 1 ) 



k.npa uevi! Because ot you with a capacity to transgress banKs 
unds (by overflowing), this world suffering under the fire of 
;the dark age) is made into a Kalamegha (dark and rain-laden 
I by the Vigrahas (Images) of the Lord of Vrishadri which are 
fully fed (i.e., full of water), which are capable of dispelling all 
ht (distress), and which are to be seen along with their full 
ie in Venkatachala and other permanent abodes of the Lord. 

The sentiments of the last, sloka of the previous decad run 
his first sloka of this ninth decad. The cloud, and the chataka 
which looks up to that cloud for its sustenance, were referred 
ire. In this sloka it is pointed out that that cloud is nothing 
hie archa forms of the Lord dwelling in the permanent Sthi- 
da forms of Images in Temples. 

.n sloka 45 ante, Daya was likened to the clouds. Here the 
.s are the Images of the Lord in Temples. As usual the upama 
talogy is worked out to perfection. Let us enjoy the slesha 
in each of the epithets. 



\) Krita-sam.agraposha.ihi: ^rawfft: The clouds are fully 
>y water. They are fj^etiisiQ&rreSI /Situ QuqjjLbQuefrGULb 
Lq-iLjmL^Qu($<s)ju3jr)jD&(i$(^<ft), as Tirumangai Alwar would 

it clouds which have devoured the big ocean with shining 
noisy waters. The Archa form of, the Lord is similarly well 
3y Daya Devi, ^PHT Samagra is fully, entirely; W-Tft 
poshaihi fed. The proximity of the word c^TT tvaya 

the compound word * krita-samagra-poshaihi * is fraught 

significance. Tt is only in the Archa forms of the Lord that 
i plays the largest part. Vibhava forms of the Lord have a 
.ire of wterr leela or sport in themvide * atmaleelaapade- 
* in sloka 35 used in connection with- Vibhava roopas of the 

Krita-samagra-poshaihi can also be taken to mean feeding 
? one fully. This also will apply both to the cloud and 10 
\rcha. 

(2) Vyapagataakhilaavagrahaihi-with all sorts of drought and 
ess dispelled. Avagraha, meaning drought (want of rain or 
r), is dispelled by the clouds that bring in rain and water. Ava- 
a may also be taken to mean erratic or excessive rain, each 
hich can be as pestilential as total want of rain. 



146 DAYAA SATAKAM 

--a friend whose friendship is not caused by any extraneous cause.. 
consideration, or circumstance, but is a friendship without any 
reason or cause Avyaaja Sauhaarda sr^M^K. This is best 
illustrated by His coming into, the, world taking various forms. 
As Nammalwar has put it, there is no form of existence which He 
has not adopted. erJBrS'dtrjD ^lurr^iLiwrnuu i3p^mu (Born out 
of every conceivable womb). The upanishad praises Him as one 
who obtains lustre and glory by being born *n3^R ^r% srRFRK: 
Consistently w ; th Desika's view that every merit in the Lord, 
that makes Him what He is, is to be traced to the presence of Daya, 
he sets out in this decad to-enjoy the avatars, and to show the part 
played by Dnya in each avatar. Already in sloka 35 it has been 
said that the Lord takes His several avatars only at the behest 
of Daya Devi. That idea is elaborated in this decad. Most 
appropriately the metre employed for the slokas of this , decad 
is Prithvi Tfspft.. Prithvi means earth. Avatara sr^RfK - 
is a descent into the earth. Prithvi is thus the topic of this decad, 
and it is also the metre employed for this decad. This is the last 
of the series of five different metres, all of which have 17 syllables 
in apaada or quarter, employed in this stotra. 

The consummate art of the poet can be seen from the 
following words all of which are synonymous with prithvi being 
employed in the slokas of this decad : 

Sloka 81 Jagat, Kshiti; 82 Jagat; 83 Kshiti, medini; 85 
Jagat; 86 Kshiti; 87Jagat, Kshiti; 88 Jagat; 89 Visvambhara; 
Jagat ; 90 Bhuvi. ;. 

The omission of a word synonymous with prithvi in sloka 
84 relating to Narasimhavatara must be deliberate; probably to 
indicate that as per the boon accorded to Hiranyakasipu, he could 
not be killed on earth, 



Kripel vigatavelayaa kritasamagraposhaix-tvayaa 
Kalijvalanadurgate jagati kaalameghaayitam \ 

Vrishakshitidhamadhishu sthitipadeshu saanuplavair 

Vrisln^adnpativigrahair-vyapagataakhUaavagrahaihi (81) 



DAYAA SATAKAM 147 

Lripa Devi! Because of you with a capacity to transgress banks 
unds (by overflowing), this world suffering under the fire of 
'the dark age) is made into a Kalamegha (dark and rain-laden 
I by the Yigrahas (Images) of the Lord of Vrishadri which are 
fully fed (i.e., full of water), which are capable of dispelling all 
ht (distress), and which are to be seen along with their full 
ie in Venkata!chala and other permanent abodes of the Lord. 

The sentiments of the last, sloka of the previous decad run 
his first sloka of this ninth decad. The cloud, and the chataka 
which looks up to that cloud for its sustenance, were referred 
sre. In this sloka it is pointed out that that cloud is nothing 
de archa forms of the Lord dwelling in the permanent Sthi- 
da forms of Images in Temples. 

n sloka 45 ante, Daya was likened to the clouds. Here the 
,s are the Images of the Lord in Temple^. As usual the upama 
lalogy is worked out to perfection. Let us enjoy the slesha 
in each of the epithets. 



\) Krita-samagraposhaihi : 3[<d<HHMlt: The clouds are fully 
>y water. They are fjfiGorsjGl&rreSl i$rru Qu(^u^Quefr<siiLb 
u}.uj<^L^Qu(nj<Mu3/f)jD&((^ffio, as Thumangai Alwar would 
itclouds which have devoured the big ocean with shining 
noisy waters. The Archa form of, the Lord is similarly well 
3y Daya Devi. ^m Samagra is fully, entirely; ^cf-Ttt 
-poshaihi fed. The proximity of the word c^RT tvaya 
the compound word ' krita-samagra-poshaihi ' is fraught 
significance. It is only in the Archa forms of the Lord that 
L plays the largest part. Vibhava forms of the Lord have a 
.ire of ^ftaT leela or sport in them vide ' atmaleelaapade- 
' in sloka 35 used in connection with Vibhava roopas of the 

Krita-samagra-poshaihi can also be taken to mean feeding 
i one fully. This also will apply both to the cloud and to 
\rcha. 

(2) Vyapagataakhilaavagrahaihi-with all sorts of drought and 
sss dispelled. Avagraha, meaning drought (want of rain or 
r), is dispelled by the clouds that bring in rain and water. Ava- 
a may also be taken to mean erratic or excessive rain, each 
hich can be as pestilential as total want of rain. 



148 DAYAA SATAKAM 

Applied to Archa, this compound word can be taken to indicate 
the dispelling of all famine of spirit. Being ever present in our 
midst, and ever and anon approachable by us, we need never feel 
left out, or left alone. 

(3) Vrisha-kshiti-dharaadhishu-sthitipadeshu-saanuplavaihi: 
Along with followings or followers in spots like Vrishagiri HiJLL 

The Kalamegha or dark cloud full of water always sits on 
the hill-tops. It is attended by lightning, thunder, winds and so on. 

So too the archa forms of the Lord adorn Viishagiri and 
other sacred Hills like the Himalayas (Badriaath). Alagar Hill 
near Madurai, and so on. If the clouds are attended by lightning 
thunder and so on, the Lord in His Archa form has His own atten- 
dants (followers) such as Ananta (Adisesha) Garuda and Vishva- 
ksena (Commander-i/i-Chief) not to speak of the Alwars and 
Acharyas who also reside in the Temples in archa form round 
the Central Archa Form. 

Thus it is said this world is overrun by the great clouds that 
are Vrishadripati Vigrahaas- or the auspicious and lovable Image 
forms of Lord Srintvasa, and thereby has its heat engendered by 
Kali, the dark age, driven out. 

The greatness of Archavatara and of the benefits that Archas 
confer on the world is markedly emphasised in and by this sloka. 
That the Form of Lord Srinivasa is a Premier Archa Form is also 
pointed out. Desika's fascination for Archa and for the Lord 
of Tirumala is once again seen here. 

For Vigatavelayaa, there is another rendering as ' Viduruta- 
lokayaa ' f%5T^fNRT meaning bearing up and supporting the 
worlds, as governing tvaya (you) referring to Daya. (8 1 ) 



Prasooya vividham jagat tadabhivriddhaye tvam Dayel 

sameekshana vichintanaprabhritibhis-svayam taadrisaihu 

Vichitragmachitritaam vividhadoshavaidesikeem 

Vrishaachalapates-tanum vfsasi Matsydkoormaadikaamn (82) 



1>AYAA SATAKAM 149 

>aya Devi! After having begotten this varied and variegated 
, with a view to bring about its welfare and improvement 
ch notable acts like seeing, thinking about, etc., you enter into 
3dies of (taken by) the Lord of Vrishaachala which are beautiful 
ovable because of their wonderful character and characteristics, 
rtiich are devoid of all kinds of blemishes, bodies like those of 
, tortoise etc. 

The avataras of the Lord are innumerable. arsnwFft 3R|3T 
%. He who has no birth takes numberless births as the Upani- 
puts it. But traditionally ten of those avataras have become 
celebrated. They are Matsya, Koorma, Varaha, Narasimha, 
ma, Parasurama, Rama, Balarama, Krishna and Kalki. 
5 are referred to as the Dasavataras or Ten avatars of the Lord. 
:a has given to us a stotra known as Dasavatara Stotra. In 
lecad he again celebrates those ten avatars. The purpose 
e Dasavathara description here is to demonstrate the Lord's 
iditioned and spontaneous feelings of friendliness (Avyaaja 
tardha) towards the denizens of the earth, which are responsible 
is descent (avatara) into this world. 

The first sloka of this decad was devoted to the enjoyment 
e Archavataras which are permanent avataras. This sloka 
s two of the impermanent avatars, the Vibhava avatars, the 
wo out of the ten set out above, the malvya and the koorma, 
ish form and the Tortoise form. The eight other avatars 
ten enjoyed in a sloka each, slokas 83 to 90. 

t is first stated here that the purpose of the several avatars 
e arfrr^fe abhivnddhi growth of the created world. 
ig created the world and brought it into being snjsr (prasooya) 
begins to work for its growth and fulfilment. The method 
:ed for effecting this growth is indicated by the words samee- 
La-vichintana-prabhritibhihi : seeing, thinking etc. The Lord 
ws His Divine glance and there is growth all round. The 
always thinks about the welfare of the world that has been 
xl by Him. He is Viswa-paripaalanajaagarooka f 



fr e ver watchful about the protection of the entire world. 

Vhile thus describing the Lord's seeing and thinking, Desika 
ery cleverly indicated the way a fish and a tortoise protect 
its respective offspring. The fish does not suckle its offspring, 
lie tortoise. The fish feeds its baby by looking at it. The 



150 DAYAA SATAKAM 

parent tortoise thinks of the baby-tortoise and the baby grows 
thereby. Students of modern biology will confirm this peculiarity 
of nature in these two creatures, one which has been observed 
and laid down in a very old saying: 

" Eekshanadhyanasarnsparsaihi matsya-koorma-vihangamaha 
Pushnanti svaanapatyaani ....... ....." 



The Matsyaavatara and the Koormavatara are indicated by 
the reference to the fish and tortoise, matsya and koorma. The 
Lord assumes the form of a fish and protects the world by His 
glances. The Lord assumes the form of a tortoise and thinks 
about the world and thereby works its welfare. 

How is he enabled to do so? Daya Devi enters into His 
bodies the fish body and the tortoise body of her own volition 
(swayam). The bodies are * Vichitra-guna-chitrita ' beautiful and 
lovely to look at because of their marvellous make up. And they 
are * vivida-dosha-vaidesika ' far removed from all sorts of faults 
and blemishes. Because it is referred to as a body, the Lord's 
body should not.be confounded with the perishing and perishable 
bodies such as ours, The material of those bodies is suddha-satva. 
It is not trigunaatmaka, i.e., made of satva, rajas and tamas. 

Lord Sri Krishna's exposition in the Gita about the nature 
of his incarnations must be properly understood before we can 
attempt to evaluate those incarnations. The two compounds 
fc vichitra-guna-chitritaam' and * vivida-dosha-vaidesikeem ' as quali- 
fying the word tanum (cR) remind us of all the excellences of 
the Lord's body assumed during avatars, as described in the Gita 
and enjoyed in the other -Sanskrit and Tamil religious classics of 
our land. Just as the Divyaatmaswaroopa of the Lord has the 
two chief characteristics known as ubhaya-linga viz., kalyanaguna- 
poorti ^o^ i^i Hf% and heya-gunaraahitya f W r Kr%3' (full of 
all auspicious qualities, and totally devoid of bador evil qualities,) 
the Divya-majigala-vigraha is also vichitra-guna-chitrita and vividha 
-dosha-.vaidesikee. 

Readers would have noticed how the word vigraha was used 
in the previous sloka, while the word used in this sloka is Tanu, 



DAYAA SATAKAM 151 

oth the words are capable of signifying the body: but vigraha 
more appropriate to denote the body which is the image or Idol 
nd Tanu to denote the body of the Lord during His avatars as 
.ama, Krishna etc. That is why these latter are referred to as 
icarnations. 

Svayam-visasi-matsya-koormaadikaam-tanum You yourself of 
our own accord enter into the bodies such as those of the fish 
nd tortois'e. The Lord takes those forms and Daya Devi 
liters into them. The upanishadic Tat-anupravisya d<HHfo^l 
luring the process of creation) is brought to our minds here by 
tie use of the word Visasi fenftr. There the Lord is said to 
nter into the world created by Him out of Himself. Here Daya 
)evi is said to enter into ths-feotttes adopted by Him during His 
^carnations . 



The words prabruti ST^fcT and the word aadisfrfe have 
>een deliberately used to include the Hamsavatara of the Lord 
>y suggestion. It is not one of the ten notable avatars. Hence 
t is not named, but left to be understood, since there is no intention 
o specify it. The ancient saying extracted above refers to birds 
n addition to fish and tortoise, and the process of feeding in regard 
o birds is indicated by the word samsparsaihi- ^TCW : by close 
ouch or embrace. It is awellknown fact that birds closely embrace 
heir young ones: in fact hatching is a process of close contact 
/ery much akin to embrace. 

The protection afforded by the Lord in his incarnations is 
lere pointed out to be a Dayakarya, Daya's act. Having created 
:he world the Lord does not leave it to itself. He casts longing 
ind loving glances at the world. And the world is always in His 
thoughts. Thereby He protects and helps the world to grow. 
The desire to protect is furnished by Daya Devi. 

The reference to the two incarnations of Matsyavatara and 
Koormavatara as the bodies of Vrishachalapathi is intended to 
convey to us Desika* s conviction that the Archavatara of the Lord is 
potent enough to furnish the basis for vibhava-avatara. This is a 
very noteworthy idea of Desika which finds expression in the Paduka 
Sahasra and other works in Sanskrit and Tamil. Consistently 
with those sayings Desika refers to the Vibhava avataara bodies 
as belonging to Lord Srinivasa, Himself an Archa (Vide also Bhava- 
to-avataaraan ^T^ft^^RR of Varadaraja Panchasat). 
20 



152 DAYAA SATAKAM 



?|I1 II 

Yugaanatasamayochitam bhajati yoganidraavasam 

Vrishakshitibrideesvare Viharanakramaat jaagrati i 

Udeernavachaturarnavee kadanavedineem medineem 

samuddhrutavatee Dayel tvadabhijushtayaa damshtraycta " (83) 

Daya Devi! At the end of yugas (i.e., at the time of Pralaya) 
Lord Srinivasa enjoys the pleasures of yoga-nidra (yogic sleep); 
by the time He, as part of the same sportfulness, gets awake, the 
earth is swallowed up by the swelling waters of the four seas; and 
you noting its distress lift it up by means of the Tusk (Tooth) (of the 
Varaha, Boar) into which you merged (combined). 

On one occasion when the world got submerged in water 
the Lord lifted it up by taking the form of a boar and holding the 
earth aloft on the Tusk (protruding tooth) of that Boar form. 
That avatara is the topic of this sloka, but it is to be noted that 
.there is no reference to the Varaha or Boar. It is left to be inferred 
from the word damshtra 5*5. The place of Daya in each avatar 
is the chief point that Desika wants to drive home, in singing about 
the avatars here in the Daya Sataka. In this avatara .her place 
is in that tusk which lifted up the earth, ' tvat-abhijushtayaa ' 
annexed or attached to you. There is a rendering for this phrase 
as tatabhi-jushtaya damshtrayaa* cf^fw^TT meaning the 
tusk or tooth annexed to Him, the Lord. c Tvat ' is the better 
reading than * tat.* The emphasis is on Daya's part in the redemp- 
tion of earth from water. 

Just as seeing and thinking were attributed to Daya in the 
previous sloka, the uplifting tusk in the Varaha avatara is associated 
with Daya in this sloka. 

Pralaya is nicely referred to here as the period of the Lord's 
yoga-nidra. It is also said that this sleep is a fitting pastime for 
the Lord at the end of the yuga. This * sleep ' is resorted to by 
way of enjoyment by the Lord. It is nidraa-rasam or the pleasure 
of sleep. 



sieep terminates witn awaKemng. Like sleep, the awakening 
s also a viharana or sport to the Lord. 

The seas are referred to as the four seas-it must mean seas 
rom all the four directions. In the Hindu mythology the number 
3i the seas is seven and not four. i^i\ 



Sataapatalabheeshane sarabhasaattahaasodbhate 

sphuratkrudhipamphutadbhrukutike-api vaktrekrite 

Daye Vrishagireesitur- Danujadimbhadattastanaa 

sarojQsadrisaa drisaa saniuditaakritir-drhyase* (84) 

Daya of Vrishagirieesa! Though the frightfulness of the thick 
cluster of matted hair (mane), the fast and frightening loud roar, 
and the trembling eye-brows, rendered the face (of the Lion-God, 
Narasimha) quivering with anger, terrihle to look at, you are seen 
in your full bloom and colours suckling that child (Prahlada) of the 
demon (Hiranya) through the eyes that resemble the lotus. 

This sloka deals with Narasimha Avatara the incarnation 
in which the Lord was seen with the body of a man below the 
neck and 'the face of a lion above the neck 

It is a mixture of the lion and the man 



)/s;c9;Lb). In this sloka we see only the lion portion the 
face portion. It was terrible to look at. The (sataa) mane was 
frightening with its cluster (patala) of matted hair. To that was 
added attahaasa (loud laughter) the terrific roar issuing from the 
lion's mouth. The eyebrows were quivering (with anger). Indeed 
the whole face was indicative of the anger that the Lord felt at 
the atrocities and iniquities of Hiranyakasipu the demon-king in 
subjecting his own son a boy (&sr gj<su<ssr) to endless 
tortures, all for the fault of daring to talk in his presence about 
the greatness and might of the Lord. The intensity of that anger 
is echoed in the words of the. first half of this sloka which is intended 
to describe it. 



154 DAYAA SATAKAM 

Just as we are left wondering as to what place, lot, or part, soft 
and sweetnatured Daya is going to have in this fiery and fire-emitting 
(cr/fl mn-Qsrp) process, Desika delights us by giving to us the 
latter half of the sloka, in soft and mellifluous language (just 
the opposite of the language employed in the first half) which 
tells us that in the midst of that ferocious face, Daya had her place 
in the eyes of the Lord, the soft, sweet, lotus-like eyes, which, 
so to say, suckled child Prahlada, the devotee of devotees, and 
gave him sustenance, strength, and courage. 

Danuja is asura, Dimbha is child, Datta-stana is giving and 
nourishing with breast milk. Daya Devi, mother of all that she 
is, (Bhuvana-jananee sloka 72 ante) demonstrates that mother- 
hood to Prahlada by giving him that milk. She is now seen blended 
with the lotus-like eyes of the Lord. ' Sarojasadrisaa-drisaa-samu- 
ditaakritir-drisyase. 9 The brows of the Lord immediately above 
the eyes quiver with fire. The mane further up is bristling with 
anger. The nostrils and the mouth are spitting fire and letting 
out peals after peals of thundering roar. In between, are the eyes 
of the Lord, soft, quiet peaceful and unruffled by all that is seen 
above and below, and those eyes bespeak love and peace, courage 
and comfort to the child Prahlada. Truly a wonderful pen-picture 
this. And note the words employed to describe the terror and 
to describe the peace. Sense and sound fit each other. Who but 
a Kavi-simha can sing of Nara-simha in such apt and wonderful 
language? 

The word * Krite ' ^ of the first half has to be read with 
the word ' drisyase ' ^zr^T with which the sloka ends. Though 
the face was made to look so terrific, you Daya Devi are seen like 
a lotus. The use of the word Krite shows that the Lord deliberately 
took on that fearful face with a view to frighten and subdue that 
demon-king, who thought he was invulnerable and that there was 
no god but himself. This mixture of man and lion was also adopted 
in view of certain boons granted to him by Brahma. 

Whatever that may be, the Lord was not able to spoil the 
beauty of His own eyes and to make them frightful on a par with 
the rest of the face. For are they not the seat of Daya as enjoyed 
already in previous slokas such as 42 and 48 ? 

A very great truth is divulged here. .The lotus eyes of the 
Lord are a distinguishing feature and identifying mark of Lord 
Srirdvasa. He is for that reason known and very often referred 



to in lamn as Kannan (GGmmrsisr), one witn Eyes. 
Markandeya in the Vana-Parva of the Maha Bbarata draws 
attention of Yudhistira and his brothers to those lotus eye 
Lord Sri Krishna, and asks them to surrender themselves to 
as He is by that very fact the Lord Supreme. And whatever m 
for the supremacy of the Lord, it is Desika's conviction that 
of Daya's making. 

The sloka has been hitherto understood only in the ligl 
the words employed and their exact meaning. So undersl 
the eyes of the Lord have been enjoyed as soft and sweet li 
lotus. But taking the whole of the first half of the sloka calcu 
to describe that angry face (spuratkrudi) it is impossible to es 
the conclusion that to Hiranya, to strike terror in whose i 
that fearful lions's face was put on, even the eyes looked 
and fierce. This is how seveial Alwars have sung about this a\ 
(e.g., ^/<SBT<SU efilyS, Tirumangai Alwar, * eriflaiLLiG swr< 
Tirumalisai Alwar) Desika's enjoyment of the Lord has al 
followed that of the Alwars. So it is intended we may s 
assume that the eyes also of Lord Narasimha were fearfi 
Hiranya. 

This interpretation is essential to bring out another 
quality of the Lord the aghatita-ghatanaa-saamarthya 01 
capacity to bring together and blend opposites and irreconcih 
The eyes of Lord Narasimha shot out fire and anger to Hir; 
the father. At the same time and place, those very eyes exb 
love, affection and compassion to the boy Prahlada, like a 
exhuding honey. The lioness is capable of frightening the ele] 
with its fiery and fierce looks (jg <sSli}<gi as Andal \ 
have it) even during the time when it is suckling its baby thr 
its teats. That is a place where two different feelings are s 
taneoiisly let out from two different organs. But here it i 
same organ at the same time emitting fire to one person and seci 
milk and honey to another. Desika's poetic genius aloiu 
conceive of, and describe, such a phenomenon. 

In a stotra of Desika called Kaamaasikaashtaka this 
finds a place almost with the same words. The high-sou 
first half is there in its entirety. The second half is as follow 



156 DAYAA SATAKAM 

As that sloka is addressed to the Lord, just as this sloka is addressed 
to Daya, He is called Kripaa-Kapata-Kesarin ! meaning " you who 
out of Kripa or mercy disguised yourself as a lion!.** Kesari is 
the mane, and a lion is known as a Kesari for that reason. The 
last words of that sloka " Vyatibishajyate Vija}^ate ** szrftrftm^ 
53FHi% in substitution of " Samuditaakritir-drisyase " of this sloka 
mean; are seen to doctor (administer medicine) to counteract the 
father's cruelty. 

As in sloka 83, in this sloka of Daya Sataka also no open 
reference has been made to Narasrmha, the avatar which is the 
topic of this slcka. 



Prasaktamadhuna vidhipranihitais-saparyodakaihi 

samastaduritachchidaa nigamagandhinaa tvam Dave 1 t 

Asesham aviseshatas-trijagad Anjanaadreesitus- 

charaachamm acheekaras-charanapankajenaankitam (85) 

Daya Devi! you made all the three worlds consisting of movable 
objects and immovable objects, without distinction, bear the imprint 
(seal) of the lotus Foot of the Lord of Anjanaadri, from which flows 
honey in the shape of the water offered (to it) by Brahma in worship, 
a foot which is capable of cutting asunder (dispelling) all sins, and 
which has the flavour and the perfume of the Vedas. 

This sloka deals with Trivikrama avatara. This is the one 
avatara that has been the subject of frequent praise in the ancient 
Vedas themselves. Needless to say the Alwars and Andal have 
celebrated it in their verses in a very large measure. Mahabali, 
an asura, had in him one great merit. Like the celebrated Kama 
of the Mahabharata, Bali was a great giver (5RTT). The Lord 
exploited that merit in him, and begged of him in the shape of a 
dwarf (vamana) three feet of land to be measured by Him 
with His own foot (ffr<sSr|p<s3>L__(L/ urrgj^gnrGV iun-csr6fruu{Lp<suui,). 
In spite of the obstruction offered to such a gift by his own 
preceptor Sukracharya, Bali promised the Lord what He wanted. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 157 

hardly had Bali said * yes.' when the Lord grew into 
nighty proportions, measured all the world in one foot, all the 
>pace above in another, and asked Bali, space for the third. 

In this act of the Lord reclaiming the world from Bali, Desika 
;ees one great virtue, which no one else has thought of. and sings 
ibout it as Daya's grand idea and act, done in the interests of the 
;afety and redemption of mankind. Jn measuring this earth by 
His foot the Lord is rightly pointed out as having placed His foot 
>n all objects chara and aclwra, moveable and immovable. He 
s said to have left the imprint (seal) of His foot on all, irrespective 
)f everything (Aviseshataha). 

What a lovely and glorious foot? It is a charana-pankaja 
i foot that is a lotus. Just as a lotus exhudes hone>, this charana- 
mnkaja Foot-lotus, gives out plentiful of honey rendered more 
plentiful by the paadya qrsr (waiter offered to the feet of respectable 
persons in worship intended to wash them) that Brahma, the four- 
kced, offered in worship to the uplifted foot of the Lord in His 
rrivikrama form. That water is referred to here as saparyodaka, 
or water used for worship. Saparya is worship, pooja. 
Brahma seated in his Satyaloka found all on a sudden the advent 
)f the Lord's foot there and immediately offered paadya to it, 
That became the Ganges. Here the upama of the lotus is pushed 
urther and the water flowing from the foot which is a lotus is 
eferred to as madhu or honey in that lotus.. 

The Foot of the Lord is next described as Samasta-duritachchida 
Ml sins are dispelled thereby. Chchedana is forcibly cutting. 
The sins are all cut asunder by resort, in any form, to the Lord's 
iharana-pankaja. 

Nigama-gandhina is the next description. Exhuding the 
>erfume and fragrance of the Vedas. This is a very favourite 
herne with Desika. Vide %^rT^^f^ftw--Velateeta sruti pari- 
nalam of Bhagavadhyana sopaana and smftfecftsfq" f^t'fejT%^^ 
\amoditopinigamairvibhurangriyugmc of Goda stuti. ^r%^T: 
Sarve-vedaha-yatpadam-aamananti. Ail the Vedas 



leal only with His Feet. So they have the fragrance of the 
Vedas. 

The Lord's charana pankaja is the seal. The whole world 
lay the three worlds got that seal affixed on them. Who put 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

seal on them? Daya herself. Note " Tvam Daye! " at the 
>f the second paada. Tvam ankitam acheekaraha You made 
tforld) bear that mark or imprint of the seal. In all the other 
.s of this decad where the sacred Hill of Tirumala is referred 
; is Vrishaachala, Vrishadri and so on. Jn this sloka alone, 
;ver, it is referred to as Anjanaadri the collyrium Hill. Anjana 
>llyrium is a thick black paste very often used to bedeck the 
with, especially by ladies. Here, where the imprint of a seal 
theme of the sloka, the reference to that black paste is obviously 
useful. Anjana serves the purpose of the ink that is used 
it seals on documents nowadays. 

To put our mark or name on a book or paper is to ^'ndicate that 
book or paper belongs to us. Daya Devi by affixing the seal 
e Lord's Foot, which has several marks on it 



Ascribed by Alavandar in his Stotra Ratna, makes it certain 
the entire world belongs to the Lord and is His property. 
for us to realise this, that we are His property. Not only 
itting the mark of His foot on our heads, but by the wafting 
e fragrance of the Vedas towards us, Daya Devi reminds us 
we are His property. And by the touch of that foot our 
ire all banished and we become pure. 

This is what Trivikrama achieved, claiming all the worlds as 
wn and indelibly sealing them with the seal of His feet. This 
dn the work of Daya. 

This sloka is the vital sloka in this decad. The 'nirupadhi 
va ' of the Lord is beautifully brought out by the word ' avishe- 
ha.' It means without any distinction difference or discrimi- 
ti. It also means without any merit or value. Ramanuja 
5 gadya has referred to the Lord as ' Anaalochita-visesha- 
a-loka-saranya ' 



le is the refuge of all, and one who never pauses to look 
ly merit in them. The words of this sloka remind us of that 
.ption by adopting that sentiment and employing those very 
; asesha and visesha. This glory of the Lord was best demons- 
. in His Trivikrama avataara, and is a feather nay, a bright 
5 in the cap of Daya Devi. 



D AYAA SATAKAM 159 



Parasvatha tapodhma prathana satkratoopaakrita- 

kshiteesvara pasukskar^ kshamjaiaimkjmmsthmsfmhh 

\'Yiskmchladayaaluna& nmu vihartim mlipyathaa- 

nidhaaya hridaye Dayel mhatarakshitaanaamihitam^ (86) 

Daya Devi! It lodks to me that: Hie marc^d turd 



Ms smeared you in sport witfi tlie kmBkanriBte blood flowing from 
the bodies of the kings of this eattli who were slain like cows in the 
sacrifkkl ag^ of warfare OMidtaeted fey that person rich in refigious 
penance and holding a battle axe (in his hand) (Parasurama), with 
the idea of securing the safety of those who are rescued and protected 
by being killed. 

Parasuramavatara is dealt with in tMs slofca. Parasurama 
and Balarama are, as already stated, included in the Dasavataaras, 
but they are avatars differing from the other avatars in several 
important respwts. Firstly they are not tfie mearnations of the 
Lord Himself fitly*. Paraswama is Avesaavataara. an^rqcitv 
Balararaa is am iitcamation of Adisesha. Avesaavatara means 
the Lord en tering into an iiwlrodual sou! in an intense and intensive 
manner. Psrrastirama was bwn as a Bratimin, s0n of a great sa^ 
Jamadagni.- To ^cure His purpose^ the Lord entered into lha* 
person, and for that reason that avatar is celebrated as an water 
of the Lord Himself. The aavesa wi%3T or entry of the Lord 
endted when Parasurania confronted Sri Rama, the next a*mtar. 
Parasurama is believed to be still Mive, being one f the chira- 
jeevinaas fa<41ft4it Mfee Haauoan and A&waifcaxna. 

That apart, Parasurama's one great work was the extermi- 
nation of tte Kshatriya Vamsa (race of kings), not once but 21 
times. Because his father lamadagni was killed by some Kshatriyas, 
he took tlie terrible vow of destroying all Kshatriyas. This he 
achieved by indulging in an orgy o f w^ 1 " aildi killing As explained 
by Lord Sri Krishna in the Vibhoothi Adhyaya of the Bhagavat 
Geeta, no one eae ackiew anything of impertance except by the 

- - - 



160 DAYAA SATAKAM 

kings of this land, Parasurama was infusec^wit^he $p|ffijrt> of the 
Lord. The Kings deserved to be killed because they were evil- 
minded and sinful. By beirig puriisheff for ^fieir'^sfhs they were 
really benefited, for it is belive$;rtjhat pi|nishmp,U;t Qft]jat sort 



results in the safety of^the killed,, who are totally redeemed from 
their sins and taken' 1 to" t8e higher ^6'flds. In Srimad ' Ramayana 
Kishkinda Kanda, ri Rajna, says that Mapu, fyas^ laid down 



P': (18-33) 

(Persons who having ^committed Sins and crimes, get punished 
tlferefpirby the Kings "of the land, ;bcom^ : pure (devoid of sin . and 
criilie) -fend 4 attainV,swarga (the land of .the gpds)\ey-en lik^goqd 
people get -thrift by* their good jdeeds)., : \ j " ^ , .1,1. 

This truth is summarised in tlmsloka by 'the words Pf ^KfsTcl Hf * 
^^ iitiha^arakshitaatiaim hitafn-the welfare (hit%) Attained ?by-. thos6 : 
whcrare protected by 'being killed}* as -a punishment. That the:: 
Lord as Parasurama had this in mind when destroying the KsliatriT? 
yasis ^pressed by the wor4?~%^FTf- i -3aidhaaya-^nd jffi, Hrudaye 
having jn mind keeping in mind tjhis i, truth about ,hita being 
conferred on those who^ are. slain,, , . " r J . [ " f 

Tjxe o^hei: aTjalogy of a yaga qw alsp ( jemphasjses this meaning. 
The^w^rfe^e in ^yhich .Parasurama killed the kings is referred to 
a^ ,p. kr^tu- ^pg or yagna ^zriT a religious sacrifice. It is 
a-*sajt-kpti^ .^r^>5:T-a goo^ t ^nd holy sacrifice. Thsposu T^T or, 
agipialj.that-is sacrificed at ya.gas- and yagna^ it is belie ved,gq^s. 
^iSwarga. ,. -So. too the Kings,, mov^ed dow]a by Parasurama, are 

i^ioa.ted fts having attained Swarsaloka.- - . - ; " 

r '"*- c H * - t . .- \j. . :. ; ;i - 

^;^* The* redFerence, to Paf^surama.Mt>y the words * parasvatdhia- 
tapodhana. ' is itself significant. He was referred to as asahgnamunl 
in/Slofca 64. Her^ie is -the 3x,e-handed tapasvi-^sai apparent, 
contradiction, fet prathma satkratu there are two aspects, war and 
yaga. .Parasvatha indicates war, and Ja^pdhana, indicates ya,ga. 

*; Ayar, cr ? uelt^ an4 destruction have no place in; ( Daya's dictio- 
nary... .As such, it is only |he hita o?: welfare that is worked thereby 
%t gives Para&uranja and his^ actions a, place in, .Daya Sataica/ 
T^Ixat, aspect, is stressed 'in .''this* sloka and referred to as ni|iata- 
raksh^a, protection of .the killed. ; \ ,\ ' " 

/; ^ven o Desika does imt desire to Associate Daya with Parasu-) 
acj. Instead -he refers, to . Vrisha^chala-Dayalu the merciful 



DAYAA SATAKAM 161 

Resident of Vrishachala assaying been responsible for the massacre 
wrought by Parasurama. 

It is up to every one to enjoy the nice trick * placed by Desika 
in, this sloka^ of deliberately referring to Parasiirama's. cruel feats 
not as Daya's acts but as .those of the. Dayala of Yrishachala. 
What is .more, all along what Daya .has done to the Lord has. been 
mentioned in several .ways "and several places. This- is the only 
sloka which, sings -of what the Lord. does to Daya. He is said to 
smear Daya Devi with the blood of the sacrificial cows kings 
in - * sport vihartum f^fcf . It is> intended as a saffron-paste. 
Kumkuma is saffron and sthaasakais. perfume or fragrant unguents. 
Aalipyathaha anf^RTsrr.: is smearing, here with perfumery unguents. 

That Desik& has^sung this sloka in this wise to fincf a plate 
even for Parasurama ; avataara m this Daya Sataka J is J clear frbin 
the use of the ^oYd Nanu ^f. Is it not so? ''It must be 1 so. 

, ' -O . U t ,, ' ' 

At least it look's to'me to be so. 



n H <:* 

Kripe \ Kritajagqddhite \ Kripanajantuchintaamane \ 

Ramaasahacharani. kshitau Raghudhureenayantyaa tvayaa 
VyabhQJyata saritpatisrsakrid avekshanaat, tatkshanaat . rt 

.v ,. prakrishta bakupaatakqprammah&iinaa setwaa " - (87). 

Kripa Devi! Doer of goad to the world! Bestower of desires 
on helpless and hapless *beings! It. is only by you, ^Who;iriade the 
iLofdJ who is fever followed by Lakshmi, come (into this world)) as 
the chief of Raghu's race, in those days (i.e., at the time of Ramav atar), 
^that the great ocekn XJort of the rivers) w divided into two by 
means of a bridge (Sethu) which, by a single sight of it,lis capta^le 
of instantaneously subduing (quellmg) all numerous heinous sins. 

Parasutatma to : Sri" Rama vvha^t; a' "pleasant" and plieasing 
transition !" :i Parasuifanla i^ atlso a El^riia. 'Balafama Who is to 
cbme next' is also "a Rama; But when ond says Rdma; no one 
thinks of any one except Sri Rama, celebrated by Valtniki in the 
greatest epic bf all times, Slimad Ramayana. " Parasurama and 
Balarama are r Ramafc with prefixes. Rama simpliciter is Sri Rama. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

>esika has said elsewhere the greatness of Rama has made 
possible for anyone else to answer to that name 



It is here said that it is Etoa wh made tike Lard a Ra,ghu- 
sena^ the chief of the race of Raghra. That is why out of 
e avafers, this avajfcam alone is enjoyed by Desika in the Dasa- 
a stottra by the term ' Kanmaa Kaakusta*' *&$m *4'$<OT 
in was so great and noble that he gave his name to ike race 
faich he belonged the Soorya Vamsa. He was also one 
established the Satanaeati cult by Ms conduct While enu- 
ring the notable Saranyaas, or protectors of those wJio take 
e in than, Besifca has inohided Raghnfc name aaaang them 
fSpf *Hld tlK TST4Vm*4U TOJcft ______ .Abhayapradana Saetram. 

is here said to have made the Lord a Raghu-dhareena, 
ef of Ra^iu's race and also a leader anio.ag Saranyaas, 
u being indicative not only of the race of Raghu but.al&o 
e race of protectors of prapannas. Thus an important aspect 
imavatara is mentioned, awl Ilaya said to Jbe re&pcmsible for 
., Saranaagata Samrakshana, wMch was the declared vrata 
ve) of Sri Rama 



There are ever so many points of merit in Ramavatara. In 
loka Desika emphasises the legacy left by Him of the Sethu 
idge across the sea, btiilt during Ramavatara, as tfce most 
inding feature of Ramavatara for the benefit of posterity. 
t came and went, feust the Setu He bwlt is a penmaiieiit relic 
at glorious avatara, and is today ^vietg mlHoiis erf peofie 
get a moie agbt erf it *' Setem Dhri&tva " 
y by sedBg fte Srtu or bridge,, -so goes am aademt 
[) ai gus dis^pear> 3 sftw %| aifrfr ^l4^^i 
i*rf% dtPd* '{Varadar^a Panchasa^. By seeing tiiat Setm 
. those fem ia dns world aue adbie to cr' tie o-ofcan ^0f 
jra. Setu was built to make Rama and His army to cross 
nto Lanka. That selfsame Setu helps us to crss the oceaja 
msara and reach the glorious city of the Lord's Feet (see 
51 ante). 

arit is river. Sarit-pati is the lord f the rivers i.e., the 

. it was vyafetajyata divided into itwo >by Daya who by 



DAYAA SATAKAM 13 

king the Lord become Rama was responsible for the erection 
the Setu or bridge, dam, across the ocean. Setu darsana and 
husnana are held very sacred by all Hindus and are believed 
cleanse us of ail our sins. And that is Dayakaarya the work 
Daya. 

The reference to Mahalakshnii the consort of the Lord in 
> sloka must be specially enjoyed. There was no reference 
Her in any of the previous slokas of this decad. Her place 
the Ramavatara is unique. The Ramayana itself is called 
itaayaascharitam mahat" ^n^r^f^^^T. Her place in Saranaa- 
i y and Her having been responsible for the construction of 

Setu, do require that prominent mention should be made about 
r in a sloka about Ramavatara. " Raghavatve-abhavat-Sita " 

" I.. .is what the Vishnu Purana 



i said. To sing about the Raghu-dhureena without mentioning 
:ta will be improper and incomplete. As She follows Him 
each avatar as stated in that sloka of Vishnu Purana, the refe- 
:ce to Him in this sloka is as Ramaa-sahacharam T*TT ^"^ <*f 
5 who is followed by Rama (Lakshmi). Or is it one who follows 
kshmi? Vide 3Wd^' TrfirwiifH 1 "She" is understood in every 
itara, but in the Ramavatara she is very prominent. In Krishnaa- 
;aara again as Rukmini, Lakshmi fills an important place, and 
in the next sloka but one She is going to be referred to. 

Another special feature of this sloka is two extra sambhuddis 
natives) in her praise, in addition to the usual Kripe! One 
Krita-jagad-hite ! one who accomplishes the welfare of the 
rid. The other is Kripana-jantu-chintamane! Chintamani is 
it mythological precious gem which like the Kalpaka tree is 
>ab!e of conferring all desired boons. To those who realise 
it they are Kripanaas, helpless beings, Daya is the Chintamani, 
iferer of all boons and desires. One of the qualities referred 
in Valmiki's classical questionnaire to Narada is contained in 
; question * Sarva-bhooteshu-Ko-hitaha ' ^nrjrPJ 3?T f=^f: The 
rds Krita-jagat-hite reflect that quality of the Lord. The Lord's 
^fl" is summarised by the epithet Kripana-jantu- 



ufamane! Day^'s great qualities are best reflected ii Rama 
Kofortttat reason is known as Karunaakaakutstha ^ 



162 DAYAA SATAKAM 

As Desika has said: elsewhere the greatness of Rama has made 
it impossible for anyone else to answer to that name (jr/rL& 



It is here said that it is Ba$ra who made the Lord a Raghn- 
diwreena, the chief of the race of Raghn. That is why out' of 
ai the avatars, this avalara alone is. enjoyed by Desika in the Dasa- 
wtara startra by the term * Kamnaa Kaakusta.' 3F$ifT Rfct*l 
Raghu was so great and oble that he gave Ms name to the race 
to which he belonged tine Sooarya Yanisa. He was also one 
who established the Saratagati cult by Ms conduct Wfaiie enu- 
merating the motable Saranyaas, or protectors of those wJio take 
in then, Desika has inchrfed Raghif & name maaaag. 'them 

t ...... Abhayapnmdana Saaram. 



Daya is here said to have made the Lord a Raghu-dhmreena, 
a chief of Raghu's race and also a leader amoaig Saranyaas, 
Raghu being indicative not only of the race ,of Raghu but.ako 
of the race of protectors of prapannas. Thus an important aspect 
of Ramavatara is mentioned, Mid Daya said to fee responsible for 
it, viz., Saranaagata Sajoaksina, wWch was Ae declared vrata 
(resolve) of Sri Rama 



There are ever so many points of merit in Ramavatara. In 
this sloka Desika emphasises the legacy left by Him of the Sethu 
or bridge across the sea, btiilt during Ramavatara, as the most 
outstanding feature of Ramavatara for the benefit of posterity. 
Mama came and went, tot the Seta He built is a pwmaaeiit relic 
erf that glorious avatara, and is today saving Millions rf people 
who get a ruene sight df it " Setma -Dbristva " 
merely by seeing the Sstu or bridge,-^ ^oes am ancieiit 



cncP^, (aradaraja Pmohasat^ % seeing titat 
today, tfanse 1mm m Om world ane aUe t ' cross the ocean of 
samsara. Setu was built to meke Rama and His army to cross 
over into Lajnka. That selfsame Setu helps us to crss the ocean 
of Samsara and reach the glorious city of the Lord's Feet (see 
sloka 51 ante). 

Sarit is river. Sarit-paM is the lord 0f the rivers i.e., the 
ocean. It was vyabtfajiyata divided into two by Daya wb by 



DAYAA SATAKAM 1^3 

ig the Lord become Rama was responsible for the erection 
s Setu or bridge, dam, across the ocean. Setu darsana and 
tsnana are held very sacred by all Hindus and are believed 
;anse us of all our sins. And that is Dayakaarya the work 
aya. 

The reference to Mahalakshmi the consort of the Lord in 
sloka must be specially enjoyed. There was no reference 
er in. any of the previous slokas of this decad. Her place 
le Ramavatara is unique. The Ramayana itself is called 
ayaascharitam mahat" ^dHl^fef^R^cf- Her place in Saranaa- 
and Her having been responsible for the construction of 
etu, do require that prominent mention should be made about 
in ,a sloka about Ramavatara. " Raghavatve-abhavat-Sita " 

r I* 5 w ^ at fas Vishnu Purana 



aid. ^ To sing about the Raghu-dhureena without mentioning 
i will be improper and incomplete. As She follows Him 
,ch avatar as stated in that sloka of Vishnu Purana, the refe- 
? to Him in this sloka is as Ramaa-sahacharam W ^f^TOT 
who is followed by Rama (Lakshmi). Or is it one who follows 
hmi? Vide m^ *lfomifil "She" is understood in every 
ira, but in the Ramavatara she is very prominent. In Krishnaa- 
ira again as Rukmini, Lakshmi fills an important place, and 
L the next sloka but one She is going to be referred to. 

Another special feature of this sloka is two extra sambhuddis 
itives) in her praise, in addition to the usual Kripe! One 
jita-jagad-hite! one who accomplishes the welfare of the 
d. The other is Kripana-jantu-chintamane ! Chintamani is 

mythological precious gem which like the Kalpaka tree is 
We of conferring all desired boons. To those who realise 
they are Kripanaas, helpless beings, Daya is the Chintamani, 
erer of all boons and desires. One of the qualities referred 
i Valmikfs classical questionnaire to Narada is contained in 

question ' Sarva-bhooteshu-Ko-hitaha ' *r*nTcr*T ift %T: The 
is Krita-jagat-hite reflect that quality of the Lord. The Lord's 
is summarised by the epithet Kripana-jantu- 



tamane! Day?"s great qualities are best reflected ii Rama 
foe that reason is known as Karunaakaakutstha- 



DAYAA SATAKAM 



>el paravatas-ivayaa Vrishagireesituh kreeditam 
jagaddhitam aseshatas-tadidam ittam arthaapyate i 
iachchalaparichyutapranata dushkritaprekshitair- 
hataprabaladaanavair-Haladharasya helaasataihi (88) 

Kripa Devi! All the sportings (leela) without exception of the 
1 of Vrishaadri, Who is ever amenable and subservient to you, 
(because of that very fact) calculated for the hita or welfare 
ic world. This is well home out by the hundreds of sports, in- 
ed in by that wielder of the plough (Balarama), which overlook, 
fail to attach importance to, the misdeeds of those who pay 
sance (bend themselves in salutation), ostensibly because of in- 
?ty (due to heavy drinking), and which are responsible for killing 
ral strong and noted asuras. 

As already mentioned in the commentary on Sloka 86, Bala- 
i is a secondary .avatara of the Lord. Sesha (Adisesha) the 
ent-Couch of the Lord was born a$ Lakshmana when the 
i came as Rama, and as Balarama when the Lord came as 
tina. As the younger brother in the earlier avatara and as 
slder brother ii the later avatara, Lakshmana and Balarama 
actively occupy a subordinate position and play a secondary 

ff anger was the keynote to Parasurama's acts, drink i? t Bale- 
's favourite pastime. Excessive drink leads to intaxication 
tig such moments vision is blurred. That is caught hold 
r Desika here nicely, and it is stated that vision being dim, 
;nition of the faults of those, who have appealed for s.yc$pur 
)ing obeisance (pranata), slips, with the result that their finite 
tmoticed. In sloka 8 at the beginning of this stotra sonjie 
of dosha-adarsanatvam ^TTOR^f (fault-unseeingness) was 
uted to the Lord Himself. That 'was caused, by the- amours 
eela Devi. In this Balaramavataar, there is the same lack 
dng note of the devotee's faults; but this is due to drink. 
)verlooking sins is what Daya Devi is anxious to bring about 
J Lord, so that those sins may not stand in the way of His 
ling His protection to his pranataas (worshippers). That 
is achieved in Balaramavatara by His frequently getting 



DAYAA SATAKAM 165 

Irunk, and not being, in a position to take note of the sins of 
rtanataas. This is a novel method of discovering merit even in 
irunknness. , But as -already stated, Desika is hard put to find 
points in Parasurama and Balarama for being enjoyed as part of 
;he praise of, Daya. 

The other merit in the sports of Balarama is referred to in 
4 hata-prabala-daanavaihi "the destruction of the more noted 
isuras. Along with Krishna, Balarama has been responsible 
'or the destruction of several asuras who were all sent by Kamsa 
:o do away with Balarama and Krishna. That sort of asura- 
lirasana is referred to here. 

Just as Parasurama has an axe as his weapon, Balarama has 
i plough (halaf^r) as his weapon. It is said that with that 
>Iough He dragged the whole city of Hastinapura into the Ganges. 
5o Balarama is here referred to as Haladhara. 



T Hela is sport, play, Helaa-sata I^TTCRf is hundreds 
>f such sport. 

, From the above-mentioned two-fold merit in Balarama's 
portiveness, it is stated that all the Kreeditvam or playfulness 
>f the Lord is conceived for the benefit (hita) of humanity. The 
eason for it is not far to seek. The Lord is Daya-paratantra 
lependent on and subservient to Daya Devi. Hence even His 
ports are beneficial to, mankind. That Balarama's sports confirm 
his theory by illustrating it, is the purport of this sloka. In the 
)a!savatara Stotra, it is said that Balarama's leelas sweeten 
Crishna's leelas, like sugar sweetening milk. 



*rabhoota vlbudhadvlshad bharanakhinna Visvambharaa- 

hharaapanayanachchhalaat 1vam avataarya Lakshmeedharam i 

Wraakritavatee Day el mgamasaudhadeepasriyaa 

vipavchidavigeetayaa jagati Geetayaa andham tamaha " (89) 



la DAYAA SATAKAM 

carry (on her back) innumerable and migfety foes of ttie Devas, JOB, 
Made Him, who carries Lakshmi (on His chest), to come down t# 
tMs earth, and (thereby) drove out all inner (menial) darkness witli 
the hdp of the Bhagavat Geeta, whose beautiful efl&ilgenee is calcn*- 
lated to shed light and lustre on the lofty mansion of the Vedas, and 
whose greatness is accepted and praised by learned men the world 
over. 

Krishna Avatara is being praised in this verse. Rama and 
Krishna as avatars excel the other avatars in ever so manv respects. 
But there is one aspect in each of these two avatars which Desika 
draws our attention to, in the slokas devoted to the two of Item 
It is only these two avatars that have left permanent and imperi- 
shable relics of their having come and gone. The Setu (bridge 
over the sea) and the Geeta are those two respective relics,. So 
Desika sings in these slokas of Data's great help rendered to succee- 
ding generations cf humanity in the shape of these two emblems 
of the Lord's love towards all men. 

Krishna the child is the darling of humanity. That aspect 
partakes of leela or kreeda. In Desika's view Karuita is the key- 
note of Ramavatara and Kreeda of Krish^avmtara. That is why 
Ram? is referred to as Karimaia-Kaakiista and Krishna as Kreeda- 
Vallabha, in the Dasavatara Stotra. This sloka devoted to Krishna- 
vatara does not touch upon that sportful Child at all. Instead* 
taki.ig its stand on the declaration of Lord Sri Krishna in the GeeUt 
about the raiwndfetre of His avataara in general 



tfifflft git spr || 
the sloka dwells upon two important aspects, the wiping out of 
the asura elements which made the earth over-run by evil, and 
the promulgation of the Geeta, It is easily seen that duskkrit 
vinaasa is mentioned in the earlier portion of the sloka. The 
reference to Geeta in the latter portion has to be understood in. 
its two-fold aspect, viz., Sadhu-paritrana and Dharma Samsthapana, 
Which other work has the same capacity to make Sadhus of all 
men, and to protect them? And which other has been able to 
put dharma on a firm pedestal as Gteta has done? So it is that 
this sloka on Kiishnavatara is conceived this wise. 

The Dasamaskanda of the Srircrad Bhagnvata P^raita starts 
with the episode of Mother Earth going to Brahtmdeva in* 



0AYAA SATAKAM 

brm of a cow, and appealing to him for help to wipe off the h 
dad of sinners, under whose atrocities she was suffering ui 
nisery. That is brought to our minds here by the w 
' Vishvambharaa-bhara-apanayana " f^WTPSTT-^T^F^, mea 
elievirag the earth from burden. Who make for that bur< 
vlother Earth is known for her patience. What or who is it 
nakes even her lose patience and begin to complain? The ansv 
urnished by the expression " prabhoota-vibhuda-dvishad-bhai 
diinna." Suffering because of the weight of the large mn 
>f the Devas' foes. 

That the extermination of asuras is done for the prote< 
)f the Devas is very naively brought out by refening to their 
is asuras but as the foes of the Devas. The Lord Himseli 
10 friends and no foes. The foes of those who look up to 
"or protection are His foes, as Krishna Himself explains 
Duryodhana when the latter wanted to play the host to the I 
6 Taking food from a foe is taboo so too feeding a foe. You 
:he Pandavas; and the Paadavas are the very life of my : 



swi ft <n^ 11 

We are reminded of this truth by the expression Vibuda-dv: 
to denote the asuras. 

Even more significant and beautiful is the use of the 
"chchda," meaning pretext. The purpose of wiping oui 
astiras and thereby lelieving the world of its burden is ref 
to as a chchala or a pretext, a guise, a semblance. This ii 
the clref object (WiM+H*H) of avatara as indicated b] 
'cha'^in ** Vinaasaaya-cha-dushkritaam." In the guis 
sending the Lord to this world for the purpose of extermin 
the evil forces of the asuras, you have really given to us th 
mortal and priceless Geeta, that is the praise of Daya tha 
&loka contains. 

The previous sluka used the word " chchala," Madachc 
parichyuta-pranata-dushkrita-prek^hitaihi. On the pretenc 
being drunk, notice is not taken of the errors of followers. 
the Lord as Balarama did not really get drunk was nicely indi 
there. He pretended to have got intoxicated and therefor 
in a position to see the fault in His devotees. The same 

triltTl 



H$8 DAYAA SATAKAM 

Avataarya having made the Lord descend. Compare tvan- 
nidesena-noonam-bhajati-janmabhedaan * of sloka 35 ante. It 
is Day a that is responsible foi the Lord's avatars. 

' Lakshmee-dharam'; As already indicated Lakshmi is made 
specific mention of only in regard to Ramavatara and Krishna- 
vatara. There it was Ramaa-sahacharam because it was an avatar 
in which the Two together traversed the entire Bharatavarsha. 
Here it is Laksbmee-dharam He who always carries Her as part 
of Himself. Lakshmee-dhara is a synonym for Srinivasa, the 
God whose Daya is the subject of this stotra. J 

Having made the Lord and Sri descend into this earth as 
Krishna and Rukmini, ostensibly for the destruction of asuras, 
what is it that Daya Devi really achieved? That is dealt witH 
in the second half of the sloka. The first and last words of that 
half are * Niraakritavatee ' and * tamaha ' respectively. Put 
together they mean " you have dispelled darkness " 

i , How, by what? * deepasriyaa Geetaya' By a beautiful light 
known as the Geeta. 

The greatness of the Geeta is enjoyed in two ways by two 
epithets. Thb f "first is Nigama-saudha-deepd-sriya-geetaya, by 
the Geeta which ,adorns and illuminates the palatial mansion 
known as the Vedas. saudha is a big and beautiful mansion. 
Here Nigama (or the Vedas) Js referred to as the saudha. The 
Vedas. themselves are Knowledge and are very often, referred to 
as , light (Ga/65 <sSl<str& <g). Vide Saastra-mayena-stira-pradeepena 
sloka 18 ante. It is Desika's conviction that without the Bhagavat 
Geeta given out by the Lord Himself, and the Prabhandas (Targil) 
given out by. the Lord's own devotees, who intuited Him by Jfis 
grace, the Vedas would not have yielded to us their true, meaning. 
The light of the Geela is praised here. The other light (Prabhandas) is 
praised thus: /snrs^w^^ujis^rB^L^^^w^Q^^^rr^^^Qi^^ 
<S$VT&@ T&e Geeta throws light on those Vedas themselves and so it 
is referred to as Deepa, and the Vedas as the saudha, the mansion 
iff and on which it sheds its lustre. The Geeta is a short and suc- 
cihct, summary of the elaborate and endless Vedas, whose true 
yeaning, it would ' have been difficult, if not impossible, to find 
btit for the advent of the Geeta. " : 

.. , The other epithet in praise of the Geeta is Vipaschit avigee^ 
taya. Vipaschit indicates learned and wise men, pundits. Vigeeit 



DAYAA SATAKAM 169 

isure, disapproval Avigeeti is the opposite of it and therefore 
is approval and praise. If there is -one treatise on matters 
>irit which has always found, is finding now, and which will 
find, universal approval, approbation, and adoption, it is 
ubtedly the : Bhagavat . Geeta, If we remember that- into 
st every language now prevalent in the world, the "Geeta 
>een and is being translated, Desika's words * Vipaschit-avigee- 
* would almost appear to be prophetic. 
By such a Geeta, the world has been able to discard darkness, 
ignorance, and revel in light and knowledge. And that is 
chievement of Daya Devi. As already indicated the dispelling 
irkness is what wa$. really wrought by Daya ia and" by her 
;ing the Lord into this world as Lord Sri Krishna. 



II' o) 

aadrihayasaddinah prabaladormamtprenkhitas- 

vtshaa sphutatatidgunas-tvadavasekasamskaaravaan i v 

hyati Dayel kaliprabalagharmanirmoolcmah 

mnah Kritayugaankuram Bhuvi kripaana dhaamadharaha (96) 

Daya Devi! The cloud that is the Sword in the hand of the Horse- 

of Vrishadri, swung vigorously by the quick movements of 
lighty hand, having the brightness of lightning, purified and 
ied by being dipped in you, and capable of dispelling the strong 
excessive heat engendered by Kaliyuga, is sure to establish in 
irth the sprouts that will again bring in the Krita Yuga. 
Crishhaavatara is the last of the incarnations that ,the Lord' 
ssumed up till now. It is said that at" the end of this Kali-' 

the Lord will come into the world once again "as a mighty 
or riding ~a horse and holding a sword or sabre in his hand 
which to mow down evil and evil-minded "men. That avatar 
jrred to as the Kalki avatar and is sung about by all the paranas.* 
Deva in his celebrated Geeta Govindam sings about it thtis :- 



166 DAYAA SATAKAM 

carry (on her back) innumerable and mighty foes of the Devas, you 
made Him, who carries Lakshmi (on His chest), to come down to 
this earth, and (thereby) drove out ail inner (nien*a!) darkness witft 
the hdp of the Bhagavat Geeta, whose beautiful effulgence is calcic 
lated to shed light and lustre on the lofty mansion of the Vedas, and* 
whose greatness is accepted and praised by learned men the world 
over. 

Krishna Avatara is being praised in this verse. Rama and 
Krishna as avatars excel the other avatars in ever so many respects, 
But there is one aspect in each of these two avatars which Desika 
draws our attention to, in the slokas devoted to the two of them. 
It is only these two avatars that have left permanent and imperi- 
shable relics of their having come and gone. The Setu (bridge 
over the sea) and the Geeta are those two respective relics,. So 
Desika sings in these slokas of Data's great help rendered to succee- 
ding generations cf humanity in the shape of these two emblems 
of the Lord's love towards all men. 

Krishna the child is the darling of humanity. That aspect 
partakes of leela or kreeda. In Besika's view Karuaia is the key- 
note of Ramavatara and Kreeda of Krishfiavatara. That is why 
Ram? is referred to as Kartmaa-Kaakusta and Krishna as Kreeda- 
Vallabha, in the Dasavatara Stotra. This sloka devoted to Kriskaa- 
vatara does not touch upon that sportful Child at all. Instead^ 
taki.ig its stand on the declaration of Lord Sri Krishna in the Geeta 
about the rahonde*e1re of His avataara in general 



\\ 

the sloka dwells upon two important aspects, the wiping out of 
the asura elements which made the earth over-run by evil, and 
the promulgation of the Geeta, It is easily seem that duskkrit 
vinaasa is mentioned in the earlier portion of the sloka. The 
reference to Geeta in the latter portion has to be understood in 
its two-fold aspect, viz., Sadhu-paritrana and Dharma Samsthapana. 
Which other work has the same capacity to make Sadhus of all 
men, and to protect them? And which other has been able to 
put dharma on a firm pedestal as Gteta has done? So it is that 
this sloka on Kiishnavatara is conceived this wise. 

The Dasamaskanda of the Srimad BhagEvata Parana starts 
with the episode of Mother Earth going to Brahnodero' iw- tie 



0AYAA SATAKAM 167 

of a cow, and appealing to him for help to wipe off the heavy 
of sinners, under whose atrocities she was suffering untold 
y. That is brought to our minds here by the words 
hvambharaa-bhara-apanayana " fe^^T-siWR, meaning 
ing the earth from burden. Who make for that burden? 
ler Earth is known for her patience. What or who is it that 
s even her lose patience and begin to complain? The answer is 
>hed by the expression " prabhoota-vibhuda-dvishad-bharana- 
ia." Suffering because of the weight of the Urge number 
e Devas' foes. 

That the extermination of asuras is done for the protection 
5 Devas is very naively brought out by refening to them not 
uras but as the foes of the Devas. The Lord Himself has 
iends and no foes. The foes of those who look up to Him 
protection are His foes, as Krishna Himself explained to 
odhana when the latter wanted to play the host to the Lord. 
dng food from a foe is taboo so too feeding a foe. You hate 
'andavas; and the Pa-idavas are the very life of my life.'* 



TO 

.re reminded of this truth by the expression Vibuda-dvishad 
note the asuras. 

Even more significant and beautiful is the use of the word 
h?.la," meaning pretext. The purpose of wiping out the 
s and thereby iclieving the world of its burden is referred 

a chchala or a pretext, a guise, a semblance. This is not 
cJref object (^rewffSFT) of avatara as indicated by the 
* ^ in ** Vinaasaaya-cha-dushkritaam." In the guise of 
ng the Lord to this world for the purpose of exterminating 
vil forces of the asuras, you have really given to us the im- 
il and priceless Geeta, that is the praise of Daya that this 

contains. 

The previous sloka used the word " chchala," Madachchala- 
lyuta-pranata-dushkrita-prek^hitaihi. On the pretence of 
; drunk, notice is not taken of the errors of followers. That 
ord as Balarama did not really get drunk was nicely indicated 
, He pretended to have got intoxicated and therefore not 
>osition to see the fault in His devotees. The same word 



H58 DAYAA SATAKAM 

Avataarya having made the Lord descend. Compare tvan- 
nidesena-noonam-bhajati-janmabhedaan ' of sloka 35 ante. It 
is Daya that is responsible foi the Lord's avatars. 

'Lakshmee-dharam'; As already indicated Lakshmi is made 
specific mention of only in regard to Ramavatara and Krishna- 
vatara. There it was Ramaa-sahacharam because it was an avatar 
in which the Two together traversed the entire Bharatavarsha . 
Here it is Lakshmee-dharam He who always carries Her as part 
of Himself. Lakshmee-dhara is a s>nonym for Srinivasa, the 
God whose Daya is the subject of this slotra. ** 

Having made the Lord and Sri descend into this earth as 
Krishna and Rukmini, ostensibly for the destruction of asuras, 
what is it that Daya Devi really achieved? That is dealt witft 
in the second half of the sloka. The first and last words of that 
half are * Niraakritavatee ' and * tamaha ' respectively. Put 
together they mean " you have dispelled darkness " 

How, by what? * deepasriyaa Geetaya'- By a beautiful light 
known as the Geeta. 

The greatness of the Geeta is enjoyed in two ways by two 
epithets. The f 'first is Nigama-saudha-deepd^sriya-geetaya, by 
the Geeta which .adorns and illuminates the palatial .mansion 
known as the Vedas. saudha is a big and beautiful mansion. 
Here Nigama (or the Vedas) is referred to as the saudha. The 
Vedas. themselves are Knowledge and are very often referred to 
as. light (3ai,s6flr*@). Vide Saastra-mayena-stira-pradeepena 
loka 18 aate. It is Desika's conviction that without the Bhagavat 
Geeta given out by the Lord Himself, and the Prabhandas (Tat^ii) 
given out by the Lord's own devotees, who intuited Him by tlis 
grace, the Vedas would not have yielded to us their true, meaning. 
The light of the Geeta is praised here. The other light (Prabhandas) is 
praised thus: ^^u^^jouj^^iB^L^^misiaQ^Gfl^rri^Q^Qu^iu 
^@ T&e Geeta throws light on those Vedas themselves and so it 
is referred to as Deepa, and the Vedas as the saudha, the mansion 
iff and on which it sheds its lustre. The Geeta is a short and sue- 
cAst summary of the elaborate and endless Vedas, whose true 

????*? woukrhave been diffi ^> if not impossible, to find 
btit for the advent of the Geeta. " :' 

- ; The other epithet in praise of the Geeta is Vipaschit avigee- 
taya. Vipaschit indicates learned and wise men, pundits, Vigeeii 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

s censure, disapproval. Avigeeti is the opposite of it and then 
rreans approval and praise. If there is one treatise on ma 
>f "spirit which has always, found, is finding now, and which 
>ver find, universal approval, approbation, and adoption, 
mdoubtQdly, the -.Bhagavat ,. Geeta, If we remember that 
tiniest every, language now prevalent in the world, the C 
las been and is being translated, Desika's words * Vipaschit-av 
aya * would almost appear to be prophetic. 
: By such a Geeta, the world has been able to discard dart 
L'nd ignorance, and revel in light and knowledge. And th: 
he .achievement of Daya Devi. As already indicated the dispe 
jdLdarkness is what was. really wrought by Daya in and' by 
>ringing the Lord into this world as Lord Sri Krishna. , 



'/rishaadrihayasaddinahprabaladormarutprenkhitas- 

tvishaa sphutatatidgunas-tvadavasekasamskaaravaan i * 

^arishyali Daye ! 'kaliprabalagharmanirmoolanah 

punah Kritayugaankuram Bhuvi kripaana dhaaraadharaha n 
Daya Devi! The cloiid that is the Sword in the hand of the H 
idr of Vrishadri, swiing vigorously by the quick movenieril 
he mighty hand, having the brightness of lightnings purified 
tolished by being dipped in you, and capable of dispelling the si 
ind excessive heat engendered hy Kaliyuga, is sure to estahli; 
he earth the sprouts that will again bring in the Krita Yuga. 
* ' ' Krishnaavatarals'the last of the incarnations that, the ] 
las assumed up till now. If is said that" at" the end of this 1 
^uga, the Lord will come into the world once again as a mi 
varrior riding "a horse and holding a -sword or sabre in his 1 
vith which to mow down evil and evil-minded 'nien. That a^ 
s referred to as the Kalki avatar and is sung about by all the pan 
r aya Deva in his celebrated Geeta Govindain sings about it 1 



170 D AYA A SATAKAM 

Karavaalam means a sword and Desika has sung in this sloka 
about the same sword of Kalki calling it by another name > Kripacma 
That sword is compared to a cloud, Kripaana-dhaai-adharaha 
the sword which is a cloud. 

The clouds are made to go hither and thither by the winds. 
The sword in the hand of Kalki is swung about by the force of 
the movements of the arm which holds it. 

The clouds are frequently lit up by lightning. The sword 
is so bright that with every movement its lustre simply dazzles. 

The clouds are well filled with water from the seas. The 
sword is well equipped (Samskaaravaan) for its task by being 
dipped (avaseka) in Daya.. 

The clouds dispel heat. This sword is going to do away 
with all the great and mighty forces of evil inflicting harm and 
distress upon the world in thh Kali age. And just as the cloud 
by its showers helps crops, shrubs, plants and trees to sprout, 
this sword is going to pave the way for, and establish, the beginn- 
ings of the next yuga, the Krita Yuga. Just as useless forests 
are destroyed and in their place helpful and useful crops are reared, 
the Sword of Kalki Bhagavan will destroy this evil-satitraced world 
and in its place start a new world based on dharma. 

The word Kalki does not find mention here, as indeed the 
names of several avatars did not in the preceding slokas. But 
reference is made to Vrishaadri-hayasaadina or the equestrian of 
Vrishachala Lord Srinivasa, and it is the sword in His hand 
that is going to work havoc with the world at the end of this 
Yuga. and set the stage ready for the ushering in of Kritayuga. 
This is possible because that sword is dipped in Daya, and Daya 
always works for the benefit of humanity. 

The decad started with the spread of Kalamegha (black cloud) 
in this world, and ends with daaradharaha also meaning cloud, 
There is no other object which reflects Daya Devi's selflessness 
and plentiful giving except the clouds; and that probably explains 
why the Lord has lent His own colour to the clouds. 



W: 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

TENTH DECAD. 



7 TER having dealt with the greatness and glory of Daya in 
90 slokas, the poet remembers about himself and the benefits 
to pbtain for himself from Daya Devi. Readers would have 
xi how in the course of those 90 slokas except on very few 
ions, such as in slokas 12, 30 and 60, the poet had never prayed 
imself. A contemplation of one's own loneliness is bound 
me while one is dwelling upon the exalted nature of Daya. 
ave already seen that Kaarpanya* or the helplessness of the 
dual soul without the aid of Daya, is a chief factor to be 
note of by one resorting to prapatti. Impelled by these, 
ther similar reasons Vedanta Desika in this, the closing decad 
5 glorious stotra, refers to his sinful propensities and to his 
;tate of helplessness, and makes a pathetic appeal to Daya 
to co$ie to his rescue and to help him attain Mokshananda. 

t is but natural for any one who has for a time looked up 
5 glories of God and His greatness, to be seized with a sense 
yulsion when one turns to one's own self. Alavandar, for 
ice, in his Stotra Ratna revels in the enjoyment of the great 
in several slokas. When he thinks of himself after all that, 
seized with a sense of disgust which finds expression in tho 
/ing words: " Dhig asuchim avineetam nirdayain maam alaj- 
fawf% srflFftef fo^f m sraw (Fie on me, the impure, the 
stless, the compassionless, and the shame4ess being.) And 
tually apologises for pretending to desire to attain God who 
luded great persons like Sanaka and Sa&andana: In that 
strain Vedanta Desika describes m tlus decad his dire and 



172 DAYAA SATAKAM 

deplorable state and pathetically appeals to Daya for help and 
succour. 

The depression in the poet's mind as he thinks of his pitiable 
state is reflected in the riietre employed in 'this decad. Whereas 
from the fourth decad onw^.naetres with 15 and 17 syllables 
were handled by the poet, in this, the metre shrinks to a 14-syllabled 
one. It is known variously as Vasanta-tilaka, simmonnata, and 
udhdharshinee. Many other' srtofras ; of De'sika like Varadaraja 
Panchasat, Devanayaka Panchasat and Goda Stuti are in the main 
composed in this metre. The topic of ifyis decad is Satpadar- 
vyaam Sahaayaha flW^f tffRT: or help along the right path. 



Visvppakaararn iti naama sadaa duhaariaam 
* : ;; adyaapi Devil bhvateem avddheerayantam i * 
Nmtfoe nivesaya.Vrishaadripatau^Daygl tvam - 2 
hyasthasvamkshanabharam tvayi rflaam tv&yaiva-n (91) 

'Devi! Daya of the Lord of Vrishagiri! In regard to you, who 
thus (in this wise) always yields all benefits (to one and all), I have 
eten now nothing but indifference arid disrespect; yet, having of 
yoiir own accord accepted and taken up the burden of protecting 
roe; you yourself please Raceme in the Lord. ; 

/// naama ^%?nw ^I n this wise. This expression is in- 
tended to take in all the qualities of Daya enjoyed- in the previous 
nine decads. - '" . :.. - v r:. - o: . s \ ,-iv :; .:; 



: , ; .";in this wise, you .yield the" milk o 
k4aram). , Visvbpakara may"also c be taken to mean all sorts a^d- 
kind of helps and aids to the men and women of the world. " ~7 

. .Dutoanaam is a beautiful word. .It .means yielding -milk 
like a cow. A cow will yield jpilk when it is imjilfed.; " , It will also 
yield to feed its calf. Sometimes it yields of its own accord, when. 
oveipowered by love and affection towards its calf -which -.is: notr' 
by its, side, Andal in her, Tiruppavai, (12) enjoys .the last of tire! 
*boye tliree.fQrms.of yielding mUk 3 .wheA she sings *\ 



DAYAA SATAKAM 17$ 

(Lp8so<sitil(]>uj jS<ssr^ unrso G&rtrr " (pouring milk 
in plenty through its teats at the mere loving thought of its calf!) 
This is a most appropriate and fitting description of the way Daya 
Devi yields milk to save us, her young ones. We do not even 
think of her, we even slight her. She does not mind. She makes 
us think, then .herself thinks for us, and blesses us. 



&rr<ssr <oT<ssr&&nruj $8ssri5gj ^0<syrQ<grujL/Lb. This is Tiruman^ai 
AhVar's beautiful description of the process of protection extended 
to tis.'.i Like a calf thinking of its mother cow, for like the calf 
fondly thought of by the mother cow) we are made to think of 
the Lord, and even thereafter,' as we cannot know what is for 
our welfare and what is not, the Lord thinks for us, just like a 
mother (^rruSl^jib &ir)uLHflj5gj with a love and affection ex- 
ceeding even that of, a fond mother, as Manickavachaka Swamigal 
has put it) and showers His Grace on us. All these fine senti- 
ments are suggested by the reference to the yielding . of milk*-* 
duhaanaam. . , , . 

' -' ' Dohana or milking niay in this context be understood as not 
only as yielding milk, but also milking. Visvopakaaram duhaa- 
njaam-may be understood to indicate the process by which Daya 
Dpvi jnakes the Lord yield those several benefits. There is a sayiiag 
that all the Upanishads are cows, Lord Krishna the Gopa Sg tfie 
dogdha iffivR) (the, milker), and the Geeta the milk yielded by 
tho$e cows for the benefit > of the learned, Arjuna being the calf 
utilised for such milking. Here Desika seems to go a step further 
and make the Gopa (Krishna) Himself a cow. Daya Davi milks 
Him, and the milk that flows from the Lord is the Viswppakaram 
which the sloka begins, ... 



How should such as I regard such as you? with love, affection 
reivbrence; and gratitude. But as a matter of fact, what is my 
attitude towards you? Avadheerayantam maam 



I hdve no regard for you. I have no respect for you. I neglect 
you. Adhyaapi 3rgrPr Even now. Even now, even after 1* 
J*ave v learnt kbout your greatness, goodness, : and glory^ as can 
be 'seen from the previous slokas sung by me. To know about 
you is one thing. To adore you is another thing. I have under- 
stood your grp^tness^but I have not yet found it in my ipind to 
worship you, to revere you, and to look up to you as my sole saviour.- 



174 BAYAA SATAKAM 

A very great truth is sought to be brought home to us all by 
this anusandhana of Desika about himself. Knowing is one thing. 
Realising is another. Duryodhana is said to have exclaimed once, 
" I know what is dharma; but I am not able to adopt it, I know 
what is adharma; but I am not able to wean myself away from 
it" qmrfir T*f ^ ^ % 3^%; qnpn^snf T ^ % fof %:. Nammalwar 
has sung ^esxsuiusyrQ/o J$)); g$<ss><suuj<svr($fl) j&iu; 



(All 

these are good; all these are bad. I know what is good and 
what is bad: but I am unable to annex the good, and reject the 
bad. My Lord! O! what is it that I can do ?) 

This is the state with most of us. We know there is a God. 
We believe in Him and His power and mercy. Still we are not 
able to give ourselves up to Him in thought word and deed. This 
plight of almost all modern men is pointed out here. Note the 
use of the word ararfr still, even now. 

The apt 3?fq- may also be taken with wff Bhavateem. 
Bhavateem apL Even such a one as you, I regard with disrespect. 
You can judge of me from this. 

Notwithstanding this state of mind, I beseech you, says the 
latter half of the sloka, please place me in the Lord. Naathe trivesapa 



You may well ask, how dare I make any request to you in 
this my unbending frame of mind? My only excuse is that having 
on your own initiative, and even without my asking, taken up the 
burden of protecting me, it is up to you alone to do what all is 
deeded for my protection. By you (c*nrT) Rafehana-bhara or 
burden of my protection has been placed in you t*rf*T. Therefore 
you cf please place me in the Lord, 

The " eva " tr^ occurring at the very end of the sloka has 
to be takeit not only with the tmya with which it is there linked 
but with the tvam and the tvayi that precede it in the second half 
of the sloka, 

By you only 5 in you alone, my protective burden has been 
placed. So you alone have to complete my protection by placing 
me in the Lord. 



r Place me in the Lord. Whose Lord? My Lord, 
your Lord, the Lord of Vrishadri. 



DAYAA. SATAKAM 175 



ffofMtft 



Tgikena tarasaa Karunel niyuktaa 
\imnetare apt mayi te vitatir-yadi syaat > 
lapayet Vrishagireesvaratn apyavaaryaa 
'elaatilanghanadaseva mahaambumsehe (92) 

)evi Karuna! If only your (water) spread, commanded there- 
by your innate speed, should swallow me up, me seated on high 
meed in my own unhending haughtiness), it will cause surprise 
stonishment even to the Lord of Vrishagiri, as being as incapahle 
ing warded off as the mighty ocean bursting its shores. 

:n sloka 13 ante. Daya was praised as being capable of immer- 
the high-placed Lord Himself. But here I am, Desika says, 
i.ed on (what I think to be) even a higher pedestal than Lord 
yasa Himself. Though I am in truth and fact a very low and 
dess person, I, out of my egotism think that I am a very lofty 
aetara) fiHd'< person. If therefore the swift current of 
L rises above me and swallows me up by submerging me, 
Lord Srinivasa will be very much surprised. Daya would 
achieved what the Lord tried but failed to achieve, namely 
me realise that I am subordinate to Him and not higher, 
i my thoughtlessness and impertinence, 1 was reckoning. When- 
He out of His infinite pity for me sought to reclaim me by 
ig Tvam-me & ^ (Thou art mine), I have always unhestita- 
y rejoined ^ *T Aham-me 1 belong to myself. Instead 
owing to Him saying fef^ ^sO^iST TRRct Pwmi"^ I 
conquered by Thee and 1 make prostrations before Thee, 
ly exclaim ?T^3 *^fad (I will not bow my head to 
one.) Carrying my head aloft, and puffed up with stupid 
2, I thought I was above the Lord Himself. 
If therefore my pride is humbled and I am immersed in the 
j (waterspread) of Daya by her own spontaneous, natural, 
innate force, the first person to be astonished at such an act 
be the Lord Himself. He will be reminded of the state of 

ill hrp.flV their shores and mingle 



wil 



DAYAA SATAJKAM 

. force as described in sloka 61. He will surely feel glad and 
3y at Daya's achievement in swallowing me up with all my 
sd up pride and egotism. 

Water can only flow from high to low. But you flow up an d 
erse plateaus and hills. Who will not wonder at it? 



aa tasasanagatir- vipareetavrittyaa 
Vtittraadibhih parichitaam padaveem bhajaami 
i vidhe Vrishagirieesa Day el mayi tvam 
deene vibhos-samaya dandadhamtvaleelaam (93) 

Daya of the Lord of Vrishagiri! Knowing as I do the way of 
ommands (Shastras), I still pursue with pleasure the paths pur- 
by Vritrasura and his ilk. (I pray to you) you please put down 
Cord's punishing sport, that is sure to be directed against poor 
r ith this evil propensity. 

This decad is intended to demonstrate the help of Daya in 
idavi ^^'4R" or the proper path. This sloka talks of the 
dq<<ft Vipareetapadavi or the wrong and dangerous path 
nost of us are treading here with disastrous results to ourselves. 
iVorst of it is we follow in the wrong path not out of ignorance 
>f sheer cussedness. This aspect is indicated by the opening 
s of the sloka: Vignana-sasana-gatihi f^'H^RH'lfa: Sascma 
smrnand. Saasanaat Saastram ^TRT^fld ^TFF^ Because it 
ciands, it is known as Sastra. I am aware of it. That is, to 

know what are the dictates of that Shastra. I know its Bo's 
Don'ts. But J invariably don't do what 1 ought to do and 

fail to do hundreds of times what I have been ordained not 

i and 1 thus resemble 



isura and others like him such as Hiranya and Ravana. All 
;m were fully aware of the error in the path they were pursuing, 
till they clung to their wrong path steadfastly, even though 
were advised against following such sinful conduct. As 
Devi pointed out to Ravana 



DAYAA SATAKAM 177 



11 

Vipareeta buddhi) Perverse knowledge^ and (vipareeta achara) 
>erverse conduct result from failure to take the advice of saintly 
ouls. The word c vipareeta * used in this sloka of Daya Sataka 
eminds us of the above-cited sloka of the Ramayana. 

Such a conduct invites the terrible punishments prescribed 
lierefor. The punisher is of course the great Lord who has behind 
lim the strength of his sixfold gunaas, known as gnana, bala, 
iswarya, veerya, sakthi and tejas--vide slokas 11 and 15 ante. 
Vhen I think of the punishments that the Lord is sure to infl ; ct 
n me, I shudder with fright. Punishment is the sport of the Lord 
rho for his Jagatvyapaara ^I^IHTK (maintenance of the world) 
as laid down rules of human conduct. The Shastraas are nothing 
ut the rules and regulations by which men and women of this 
rorld have to guide themselves. When they fail to do so, they 
ivite the wrath of the Lord, and in the same way in which He 
rought the world into being, He punishes the wrong doers. The 
wd punishment is here denoted by the word * dandadharatvaleela.' 
Danda is the stick used to beat by way of chatise- 



icnt. The wielding of the stick or the cane is therefore symbolic 
f punishment. Shuddering at the thought of the punishment 
tat I am going to receive at the hands of the Lord, I appeal to 
ou to protect me from the same. I am a very low and helpless 
erson who have realised the atrocities of my acts only after I 
ave committed them. Now I appeal to you to protect me, since 
ty evil acts are now ripe enough to get me punished for them. 
lease use youi good offices and see that the punishing tendency 
f the Lord is quelled. Inspite of the fact that I am this bad ipf 
F*$ 1 take courage and approach you, because you have very 
indly taken upon yourself the great task, a difficult task in fact 
HET Saahasa of protecting me. That Daya Devi can cleverly 
id successfully avert punishments intended for the wrong-doers 
is been stated in several of the earlier slokas. This appeal to 
>aya Devi issues from the frightened heart of the wrong doer. 

The prayer of Desika and the other great Acharyas like him 
: words such as those employed in this sloka are really intended 
>r men and women like us. In fact it is most appropriate only 
>r us. 



174 DAYAA SATAKAM 

A very great truth is sought to be brought home to us all by 
this anusandhana of Desika about himself. Knowing is one thing. 
Realising is another. Duryodhana is said to have exclaimed once, 
" I know what is dharma; but I am not able to adopt it. I know 
what is adharma; but I am not able to wean myself away from 
it" 5THifa T*f ^ T *t sr^%; STTtrnawf ^T ^ ^ ftffe;. Nammalwar 
has sung 




(All 

these are good; all these are bad. I know what is good and 
what is bad: but I am unable to annex the good, and reject the 
bad. My Lord! O! what is it that I can do?) 

This is the state with most of us. We know there is a God. 
We believe in Him and His power and mercy. Still we are Hot 
able to give ourselves up to Him in thought word and deed. TMs 
plight of almost aU modern men is pointed out here. Note the 
use of the word srenrfr still, even now. 

The apt srfq- may also be taken with *r*rcff Bhavateem. 
Bhavateem apL Even such a one as you, I regard with disrespect. 
You can judge of me from this. 

Notwithstanding this state of mind, I beseech you, says the 
latter half of the si oka, please place me in the Lord. Nuathe nivesa^a 



You may well ask, how dare I make any request to JOB in 
tMs my unbending frame of mind? My only excuse is that having 
on your own initiative., and even without my asking, taken up the 
burden of protecting me, it is up to you alone to do what all is. 
needed for my protection. By you (c^TT) Rakshana-bhara or 
burden of my protection has been placed in you t^f%. Therefore 
you ^ please place me in the Lord, 

The " eva " TT^T occurring at the very end of the sloka has 
t be taken not only with the tmja with which it is there linked, 
but with the tmm and the tvayi that precede it in the second half 
of the sloka. 

By you only, in you alone, my protective burden has been 
placed. So you alone have to complete my protection by placing 
me in the Lord. 



r Place me in the Lord. Whose Lord? My Lord 
your Lord, the Lord of Vrishadri. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 175 

awn ? 



rgikena tarasaa Karunel niyuktaa 
'inmefare apt mayi le vitatir-yadi syaat i 
idpayet Vrishagireesvaratn apyavaaryaa 
'elaatilanghanadaseva mahaamhunisehe (92) 

)eVi Karuna! If only your (water) spread, commanded there- 
by your innate speed, should swallow me up, me seated on high 
meed in my own unbending haughtiness), it will cause surprise 
stonishment even to the Lord of Vrishagiri, as being as incapable 
ing warded off as the mighty ocean bursting its shores. 

n sloka 13 ante, Daya was praised as being capable of immer- 
the high-placed Lord Himself. But here I am, Desika says, 
s.ed on (what I think to be) even a higher pedestal than Lord 
yasa Himself. Though I am in truth and fact a very low and 
rless person, I, out of my egotism think that I am a very lofty 
letara) f^TR^fT person. If therefore the swift current of 
i rises above me and swallows me up by submerging me, 
Lord Srinivasa will be very much surprised. Daya would 
achieved what the Lord tried but failed to achieve, namely 
? me realise that I am subordinate to Him and not higher, 
( my thoughtlessness and impertinence, I was reckoning. When- 
He out of His infinite pity for me sought to reclaim me by 
ig Tvam-rne ^f % (Thou art mine), I have always unhestita- 
y rejoined s^Jf Aham-me 1 belong to myself. Instead 
owing to Him saying 



conquered by Thee and ] make prostrations before Thee, 
ly exclaim sprJtifcj h^Rc( (1 will not bow my head to 
one.) Carrying my head aloft, and puffed up with stupid 
5, I thought I was above the Lord Himself. 

If therefore my pride is humbled and I am immersed iu the 
T (waterspread) of Daya by her own spontaneous, natural, 
innate force, the first person to be astonished at such an act 
be the Lord Himself. He will be reminded of the state of 

in KrAflV tTir^ir <;Tiores and 



w 



176 DAYAA SATAICAM 

with force as described in sloka 61. He will surely feel glad and 
happy at Daya's achievement in swallowing me up with all my 
puffed up pride and egotism. 

Water can only flow from high to low. But you flow up and 
immerse plateaus and hills. Who will not wonder at it ? 



Vignaatasasanagatir-vipareetavrittyaa 

Vrittraadibhih parichitaam padaveem bhajaami i 

vflw vldhe Vrishagirieesa Dayel mayi tvam 

deem vibhos-samaya dandadhamtvaleelaam n (93) 

Daya of the Lord of Vrishagiri! Knowing as I do the way of 
the commands (Shastras), I still pursue with pleasure the paths pur- 
sued by Vritrasura and his ilk. (I pray to you) you please put down 
the Lord's punishing sport, that is sure to be directed against poor 
ine with this evil propensity. 

This decad is intended to demonstrate the help of Daya in 
Satpadavi ^rcq^t or the proper path. This sloka talks of the 
ftnO^^T Vipareetapadavi or the wrong and dangerous palih 
that most of us are treading here with disastrous results to ourselves. 
The worst of it is we follow in the wrong path not out of ignorance 
but of sheer cussedness. This aspect is indicated by the opening 
words of the sloka: Vignana.sasana-gatihi ftdMqRFTnfgr: Sasma 
is Command. Saasanaat Saastram m^m ^T^f Because ft 
commands, it is known as Sastra. I am aware of it. That is, to 
say I know what are the dictates of that Shastra. I know its Do's 
and Don'ts, But I invariably don't do what 1 ought to do and 
never fail to do hundreds of times what I have been ordained not 
to do. frfcwNK**if fr^T fcTOtfo: and I thus resemble 
Vritrasura and others like him such as Hiranya and Ravana All 
of them were fully aware of the error in the path they were pursuing 
but still they clung to their wrong path steadfastly, even though 
they were advised against following such sinful conduct As 
Seeta Devi pointed out to Ravana 



DAYAA SATAKAM 177 

\ 



ft INfai % 3fe*HiM% 11 

(Vlpareeta buddhi) Perverse knowledge, and (vipareeta achara) 
perverse conduct result from failure to take the advice of saintly 
souls. The word ' vipareeta * used in this sloka of Daya Sataka 
reminds us of the above-cited sloka of the Ramayana. 

Such a conduct invites the terrible punishments prescribed 
therefor. The punisher is of course the great Lord who has behind 
Him the strength of his sixfold gunaas, known as gnana, bala, 
aiswarya, veerya, sakthi and tejas vide slokas 11 and 15 ante. 
When I think of the punishments that the Lord is sure to infPct 
on me, I shudder with fright. Punishment is the sport of the Lord 
who for his Jagatvyapaara v^rc^i'MR (maintenance of the world) 
has laid down rules of human conduct. The Shastraas are nothing 
but the rules and regulations by which men and women of this 
world have to guide themselves. When they fail to do so, they 
invite the wrath of the Lord, and in the same way in which He 
brought the world into being, He punishes the wrong doers. The 
word punishment is here denoted by the word * dandadharatvaleela.* 
Danda is the stick used to beat by way of chatise- 



ment. The wielding of the stick or the cane is therefore symbolic 
of punishment. Shuddering at the thought of the punishment 
that I am going to receive at the hands of the Lord, I appeal to 
you to protect me from the same. I am a very low and helpless 
[person who have realised the atrocities of my acts only after I 
lave committed them. Now I appeal to you to protect me, since 
ny evil acts are now ripe enough to get me punished for them. 
Please use youj good offices and see that the punishing tendency 
>f the Lord is quelled. Inspite of the fact that I am this bad rtf 
5p$ I take courage and approach you, because you have very 
dndly taken upon yourself the great task, a difficult task in fact 
gp* Saahasa of protecting me. That Daya Devi can cleverly 
ind successfully avert punishments intended for the wrong-doers 
las been stated in several of the earlier slokas. This appeal to 
Daya Devi issues from the frightened heart of the wrong doer. 

The prayer of Desika and the other great Acharyas like him 
ii words such as those employed in this sloka are really intended 



178 DAYAA SATAKAM 



saahasoktighanakanchukavanchittanyah 
pasyatsu teshu vidadhaamyatisaahasaani i 
Padmaasahaaya Karunel na nmatsi kim tvam 

ghoram kulingasakuner-iva cheshtitam me (94) 

Devi Karuna of Srinivasa! putting on a strong armour (covering) 
constituted by the words " do not be rash " in order to cheat the 
rest of the world, I myself daringly commit several rash acts before 
the very eyes of the persons whom I cheat by my external deportment. 
How is it you do not prevent this kind of behaviour on my part, 
which resembles the conduct of the kulinga bird? 

In the previous sloka the poet sung about the knowingly com- 
mitted traiisgressions of Shastric commands. Here he goes one 
step further. Not only do I act against the Sastras, but I act 
even against my own words. I preach one thing and practise 
another. In order to impress upon those who come to me, for 
instruction and look up to me for guidance, I say " don't be rash 
in your acts." " Always act in such a way as to respect the Shastric 
injunctions which you must never dream of going against," This 
is for their consumption, so that they may think that I am a very 
good Acharya, and a very great and noble person. Having cheated 
them thus into believing in my greatness, even before their very eyes 
I myself act contrary to that very upadesa or teaching, and commit 
several rash acts. 



Kanchuka ^o^^r is a coat, or cover, ghanakanchuka 
is a thick coat, almost like an armour. My upadesa or teaching 
"TTSTT^ff^" (don't comm it any rash or sinful act) is the 
external covering which conceals my real and true nature. Just 
like the tiger donning the garb of a cow, I cover myself with a 
thick coat of goodness, and make psople believe that I am good, 
while in fact I am not. I have not the patience to wait till my 
disciples, to whom I give this advice, leave my presence. Even 
while they are looking on, I commit the very misdeeds against 
which I warn them. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 179 

The poet refers to a bird called kulinga. It is said that the 
I which emanates from the throat of the bird very much 
ibles the sound of "maa saahasa." Even while uttering 
iound, it is said, the bird will insert its beak into the mouth 
e yawning lion to pluck a bit of flesh sticking in the lion's 
. That particular bird has been defined in Sanskrit literature 



I 



The poet asks Daya Devi in this sloka to see that such conduct 
haviour on his part is eschewed by him and put away for ever. 
is it that having taken upon yourself the burden of protecting 
fou still permit this sort of behaviour OB my part? It is up 
>u and you alone to put an end to my committing atrocities 
LSI which I warn others. 

Reading the previous sloka and this together, it looks. as if 
ka is again emphasising the need for good conduct especially 
le post-prapatti period. The observance of prapatti is an, 
ation of cessation of the commission of sin. Prathikulyavarjana. 
.ew of the determination not to swerve from the Sastraic path 
i on the occasion of prapatti, the person resolves rot to commit 
deeds thereafter. In order to ensure that no evil deeds ,are 
nitted, Desika appeals to Daya Devi in this sloka to see that 
tendency to go against his own expressed wish of not transgres- 
the Lord's laws is curbed. 

Incidentally Desika indicates one of the chief characterestics 

ought to be present in every Acharya. He must act according 

is own upadesa. If he does not, he will resemble the kulinga 

.. Elsewhere also Desika refers to a true Acharya as @<s$/s/as 

$ eSI(^^^rrjsrB e6uQ&&l&(GS)esr ^ffrnfliusw that is, . one, 

is far removed from the conduct of the kulinga bird. 

.g an Acharya of great repute himself, Vedanta Desika here 

s a tip to all who are desirous of being Acharyas imparting 

uction to, and enforcing rules of conduct in, their disciples. 



DAYAA SATAKAM )il 

i brings out this idea of indulging in a pretence of sport 
>rder to achieve His desire to divinise human beings. There 
10 one who can be employed with better effect iii this 
aising process than Daya Devi, and more persons are likely 
>e caught in the net of Daya than in other nets. The Lord 
wonderful beauty. He is known as Bhuvanasundara-Wq ig^ *. 
nt we human beings fail to be attracted by that beauty. He 
storehouse of auspicious qualities. They do not appeal to 12$. 
a Devi alone has the capacity by her goodness and cleverness 
atch us unawares, and that is why the analogy of the net is 
dged in by Desika in this sloka to describe .one more-charac- 
itic greatness of Daya Devi. 



if 

\anyamaanam aparaadhaganam vichintya 

trasyaami hanta bhavateem cha vibhaavayaami i 

aaya me wishagireesa Day el Jaheemaam 

aaseevishagrahana kelinibhaam avasthaam" (96) 

Daya of the Lord of Vrishagiri! when I think of tlie multitude 
ly sins that are era- on tfee increase, I siraiply shudder. And 
>nce) I also think of you. Alas ! Please quickly put an end to 
(pitiable) state of mine, very much like catching hold of, and 
ing with, a terribly poisonous serpent. 

Slowly, it is being revealed, the poet's respect for Daya is 
ring. He has implored her to place him in the Lord. (91) 
vert punishments that the Lord may inflict (93) and to catch 
unwares as in a net (95). (Rama was sent by Seeta to catch 
er for her. He was not able to. But Daya is able to catch 
number for her Lord). 

In this sloka, the poet speaks about his inability to shake 
lis sinning propensities, in spite of his appeals to Daya Devi 
tielp and redress. A man learns Garuda Maiatra in order to 
3 away by its utterance the poisonous effects of a serpent-bite. 



18 DAYAA SATAKAM 

Vlkshepam arkasi Dayal vipalaayite api 

vyaajam vibhaavya Vrishasailapater-vihaamm i 
Sfraadheena satva saranis-svayam atra jantau 

draagheeyasee dridhaiaraa gunavaaguraa tvam (95) 

Daya Devi! however much I may try to run away (from you), 
you must capture me in the guise of providing shikar for the Lord oi 
Vrishachala. You are well aware of the paths in which beings (ani- 
mals) are likely to wander. Therefore, you please of your own 
accord spread yourself s^ as to enmesh this feeing in your net which 
is long, strong., and made of ropes (strings). 

In this sloka Desika requests Daya Devi to catch him unawares. 
He likens Daya Devi to a long and sturdy net. The hunter who 
spreads this net is of course Lord Srinivasa. Daya is His net 
which he spreads far and wide in order to catch animals during 
His shikar, or hunting sport, in which kings very often indulge. 
The net has to be spread only in places which animals are likely 
to frecpient, so that when they come to the spot they get entangled 
and thereby get caught. Daya Devi is here described as possessing 
the requisite knowledge of places frequented by animals, by the 
expression** Svaadheena Satva-sarani. Satva refers to beings; *Rfaf 
saram to the pathways they frequent. ^Rr ?ERPr Satva sarani can 
also be taken to mean the right path, the satvic path. We are 
reminded once again of the topic of this decad, that is Satpadavyara 
Sahaaya or helping in putting one, or taking one, on the right path. 
The net Vaagura 3PR which has to be spread far and wide 
k referred to as very long, draagheeyasi, long enough to catch the 
swiftest runner; and very strong dridhataraa, no one once caught 
in it can escape from it; and as made up of guna, strings or ropes. 
Graa ef course also means attribute. You must catch me by your 
graas and loveab!eness> seems to be the hidden suggestion. Readers 
will notkehow the poet refers to himself here as a jantu,-an animal, 
ust a being. Naichyanusandhaana or recounting one's own 
tawliness cannot go further. It it only when this sentiment takes 
hold of one, that Daya Devi relents. She cannot be cheated by 
mere words. She looks to the feelings in the heart. * 

Casting nets and catching animals this is the sport of kings. 
The desire on the part of the Lord of Vrishadri to indulge in 
shikar sport is to be made a pretence to cast this net of 
Daya far and wide. Vyaajam vibhaavya o^FR f^TTszr very 



DAYAA SATAKAM itl 

well brings out this idea of indulging in a pretence of sport 
in order to achieve His desire to divinise human beings. There 
Is no one who can be employed with better effect m this 
divinising process than Daya Devi, and more persons are likely 
to be caught in the net of Daya than in other nets. The Lord 
has wonderful beauty. He is known as Bhuvanasundara- 



but we human beings fail to be attracted by that beauty. He 
is a storehouse of auspicious qualities. They do not appeal to las; 
Daya Devi alone has the capacity by her goodness and cleverness 
to catch us unawares, and that is why the analogy of the met is 
indulged in by Desika in this sloka to describe one more charac- 
teristic greatness of Daya Devi. 



Santanyamaanam aparaadhaganam vichintya 

trasyaami hanta bhavateem cha vfbhaavayaami i 

Ahnaaya me vrishagireesa Day el Jaheemaam 

aassevishagrahana kelinibhaam avasthaamu (96) 

Daya of the Lord of Vrishagiri! when I think of the multitude 
of my sins that are ever on tke increase, I simply shudder. And 
<at once) I also think of you- Alas ! Please quickly put an end to 
this (pitiable) state of mine, very much like catching hold of, and 
[playing with, a terribly poisonous serpent. 

Slowly, it is being revealed, the poet's respect for Daya is 
growing. He has implored her to place him in the Lord. (91) 
to avert punishments that the Lord may inflict (93) and to catch 
him unwares as in a net (95), (Rama was sent by Seeta to catch 
a deer for her. He was not able to. But Daya is able to catch 
any number for her Lord). 

In this sloka, the poet speaks about his inability to shake 
off his sinning propensities, in spite of his appeals to Daya Devi 
for help and redress. A man learns Canute Maiitra in order to 
drive away by its utterance the .poisonous eflects of a serpent-bite. 
But having learnt that Mantra which is an antidote to serpent- 
poisoti; hie thinks of playing with serpents by catching them, and, 



182 DAYAA SATAKAM 

if in that process he is stung by the serpent, uttering the mantra 
to get rid of . the deadly effect of that poison. 1 am now, says 
Desika in this sloka, very much like such a man. Before that 
man learnt the Garuda Mantra he was afraid of snakes, but the 
very fact of his having attained siddhi in Garuda rnantra emboldened 
him to go to snake-infested areas, and try to catch hold of them 
and play with them. So too I am now prone to multiply my sins 
relying on Daya to save me from their evil effects. Truly an un- 
enviable position! That is why it has evoked a Hanta ^f, (Alas) 
from the poet's mouth. 

" Quickly end this wretched plight of mine is the prayer, Ahnaaya 
jahi (3TffR - srf|), that arises in the heart of the poet. The proxi- 
mity of the word Ahnaaya with Vibhaavayaami (f^TFRITftr) suggests 
that those two words may be taken together so as to indicate how 
quickly I think of ybu Daya, when I am confronted with my mount- 
ing sins. 

/Imaam avasthagm (?*rt ar^qf) This plight. It has to be 
seen to be understood fully, and cannot be adequately or properly 
described. So dire and deplorable a state. This reminds one of 
Nammalwar's |)/5/i5)<s5r/D /grrswui (This plight). 

This sloka appears to be a poetic elaboration of the sentiment 
contained in the 8th sloka of Nyaasa Dasaka which runs as follows : 



facfo II 

O Lord! full of Karuna! please see to it that my sins (which 
are likely to pave the way for the commission of more sins) do not 
get activated (begin to function). And pray! you yourself prevent 
those that have begun to act (by neutralising them). 

, If there is one point that Desika is anxious to drive home, 
it is the great need for avoiding the commission of sins, especially 
after the performance of Prapatti. 



DAYAA SA1AKAM 183 

kya poorvam upahritya mahaaparaadhaan 
vaatahl prasaadayitum ichchhati me manas-tvaam t 
a taan niravasesham alahdhatriptis- 

aamyas-yahol Vnshagirieesadhritaa Dayel tvami* (97) 

Mother mine! Daya Devi! My mind (thus) exultingly submits my 
lous and untold sins as an offering unto you, and thereby desires 
sase and satisfy you; you who are supported by the Lord of 
agiri lick them all up leaving nothing behind, and without being 
ied (thereby) feel famished. What a wonder! 
\s a return for all the kindness and consideration that you 
d towards me, and the great and invaluable help you render 
e by getting me pardoned of all my sins and crimes, what 
[ can offer to you, Daya! Why, nothing but those very sins 
rimes. My mind thinks of doing something by way of pleasing 
(prasaadayitum). Knowing your propensity to annihilate 
my mind at once hits upon placing those very sins as offerings 
u. Knowing as it does the immensity of those sins committed 
s, my mind naturally feels elated at the opportunity it is availing 
of, of offering them all to you, such a big naivedya (oblation), 
lation or pleasure at the thought of placing a full and rich 
it before you, is however very short-lived. 
For, as soon as that frightfully large and heavy load of 
is offered to Daya, she licks them all up, laps up the whole 
dthout leaving even a faint trace, and appears to want more, 
t she lias taken, instead of appeasing her appetite and hunger, 
mly helped to whet that appetite, with the result ,that she now 
5 positively hungry and famished. One is inescapably made 
ander at this, and exclaim * Aho * 3fi|t. . 

For all that the Lord and Daya Devi do to help us, what 
that we can think of doing or giving by way of recompense? 
imalwar exclaims: ^i/SlQaj<svr 90^#ihii>rr(5/D. (I am not able 
link of any return or recompense). Alavandar cries out in 
equally helpless frame of mind Kinnu-samarpayaami te 
qqiUilfa %) What is it that I can offer to you (in return)? 
same sentiment overpowers Desika here and he gives expres- 
tp it in his own inimitable way. Daya Devi takes a pleasure 
stting us freed from our sins. This is poetically referred to 
ns being eaten up by Daya Devi, consumed. All the worlds 
: destroyed by the Lord in pralaya. He is said to have eaten 
e worlds: $LSTL-I $L<sv<3&(Lgw &.<sfTQefrrr($iisi&. Similarly 
24 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

i is said to eat or devour the sins of her votaries m 
tees. That act of grace is beyond repayment That she 
not look forward to any recompense is only too patent; That 
cely expressed by saying she takes a pleasure in killing , and 
uring our, sins, and the pleasure she derives is the only benefit 
*ets out of it. The words " Aalihya taan niravasesham alab- 
riptihi " indicate the extreme pleasure th.at Daya Devi derives 
e process of the annihilation of sins. Sweet things like honey 
iot gulped but are licked and lazily tasted by the tongue. " Aali- 
' meaning licking,' has been specially used here to denote 
tasteful the pardoning of sins is lo Daya Devi. "'Nirava- 
im" shows, without leaving a bit, drop or fragment, and 
rms the tastejfulness. Even then it does not satiate. Daya" 
:ers for more as' 'shown by the word 4< alabdhatiripti " not 
Eied. 

It is easy to miss the poetic imagery employed in this sloka,] 
.ke the words literally, and to conclude that Desika is here 
ng a premium on sins and sinfulness, and lays down that 
[ease Daya one must never stop committing sins. Nothing 
?e farther from the mind of that great Acharya than that sin r 
an is a qualification for God's mercy descending on him. 
Vlaataha! *TTc!": Mother! is the vocative in the first half of 
iloka, wherein the tendency of the human mind to placate, 
3lease Daya Devi by the offering of sins is referred to. That 
.ate relationship emboldens one to think in that strain. Dayefr 
5 second vocative in this sloka and occurs in the second half 
*ing to Daya Devi's capacity to forgive all sins however 
>us. For is she not a Daya having the support of the Lord! 
ishagiri. Vrishagireesa dhrita Daye! 

leaders will have reminded themselves of the sentiment given 
ssi on to in Sloka 29 ante, viz., " By ignoring me and protecting; 
Dinners, you, Daya, will not obtain a sense of fulness or satis- 
>n or appeasement of hunger. I am sorry for you" was. 
was said there. That, struck a note personal to - Hie poet; 
a this 97th sloka the poet emphasises the power of Daya to 
>n all sins however numerous and however heinous and, 
"ore no one need feel that he has sinned that much whicla is 
id Daya's pardoning capacity. This is one aspect of Msthaj 
isa, or the great faith, which assures us that however much- 
ight have sinned in the past, the moment we regret and im-. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 185 

vedly place ' ourselves in the hands of the Lord's ; protecting 
?, we are sure to be saved. 



md Vrishaachalapatih-pratighepi no tvaam 
*hannopatapta iva seetalataam udanvaan 
mam arurrtudabharanyasanaanuvrittis- " 
tad-veekshanctiS'Spma Dayel tava kefipadmaihin (98) 

Daya Devi! However much the Lard of Vrishachala may get 
IT (at me), He is not capahle of giving you up even like the ocean 
i is unable to discard its inherent coolness even in the hottest 
jer. You in turn are so minded that a repetition of prapatti 
ander unto you) is very wounding .to you. I therefore beseech 
please let the lovely glances of His (Srinivasa's), which are 
sportive lotuses, touch me (fall on me). 

This sloka can be said to contain the final prayer of Vedanta 
ica in this stotra. He wants to be the recipient of the Lord's 
ictive glances (kataaksha). While dealing with slokas 49 
50, we had occasion to recapitulate the kataakshas that mark 
everal stages in the spiritual progress of the human soul. 
series of kataakshaas winds up with - the kataaksha or 
>hana sung in this sloka. It is tile one which secures ultimate 
tude to the individual soul. Slokas 99 and 100 that follow 
iy describe the form that the poet desires that beatitude to take. 

As if to explain why all these ages on ages that have passed, 
ipaasaka, who has now sought Daya's intervention, was left 
.fler in sams^ ara* the poet refers .to the anger of the Lord, an 
r roused by his sins. At once Desika reminds himself of 
L'S hold on that Lord. He is incapable of giving up Daya. 
L is inherent in Him. She is of His very nature, just like cool- 
is of the ocean (sloka 23 ante). Even when it is 50 degrees 
grade (122 degrees F) in the shade, on land, the waters of the 
ire cool. " As the sea is incapable of giving up its coolness, 
.ord is incapable of giving up Daya. The sloka starts with 
issuring fact, so helpful to us all. 



186 DAYAA SATAKAM 

The next idea is about Daya's readiness to help. For one 
prapatti prapatti once done (vide " Sakrid-eve-prapannaaya f' 
of the Ramayana) Daya unreservedly promises her full help and 
cooperation in obtaining for us from the Lord what we want of 
Him viz., moksha. The very idea of a second prapatti or repeti- 
tion (anuvritti) of the process of surrender is so repulsive to Daya. 
It is like a sharp stab straight into her sweet and good heart so 
wounding to her (aruntuda). 

The Lord is placated by our invoking Daya. Daya has been 
placated by our surrender to her. Then what remains ? Nothing 
but the realisation of the final beatitude. Then why tarry? Pray 
let the glances of the Lord play on me. This glance, the present 
one, is not a step towards mukti, but is mukti-conferring. Let 
me have it, prays Desika. The close connection between the 
Lord's Kataksha and Daya has been referred to more than once 
before. In sloka 42 it was tvatparishvanga-dhanyaihi, glances 
blest by your close embrace, in sloka 49, it was " Sakheem-te," 
glances which are fond and close confidante (bosom friend) of Daya-. 
Here they are Daya's Keli padmas or lotuses with which Daya 
Devi fondly plays. 

Sprusa-touch, Touch me with those glances of the Lord. 
That is to say make me the recipient of those glances. Bathed 
in the effulgence of those loving glances of the Lord, I shall become 
freed from Samsara and become a full-fledged Mukta. 



nf 



Drishte-api durbala dhiyam damanepi driptam 

snaatvaapi dhoolirasikam bhajanepi bheemam i 
Baddhwaa gnhaana Vrishasailapater Daye maam 

tvad vaaranam svayam mugrahasrinkhalaabhihi* (99) 

Daya of Vrishachalapati! Pray, bind me, your elephant, with 
the chains of your amigraha (favour) and capture me. I resemble 
an elephant because my intellect is weak even in regard to objects 
fuUy seen and comprehended. I am full of uncontrollable force 
and vigour even when controlled. I am very fond of, and take to 



DAYAA SATAKAM 187 

dirt and dust, the moment I emerge from a bath; and I am frightful 
even when placated. 

Having become che recipient of the Lord's kataksha by thi 
goodness of Daya Devi, Desika now prays to Paya to chain him 
up and capture him so that he can no more be what he was in the 
past. By four very nice and suggestive epithets he compares 
himself to an elephant and describes in a nutshell the proclivities 
of erring mankind. 

(1) Drishte-api-durbala-dhiyam. 

. Man slides into error not because he is unable to see that 
if is an error. He sees well, and fully realises the situation in all 
its aspects, and yet does wrong because he has not the strength 
to avoid it and do good. 

An elephant sees well the danger ahead of it; yet especially 
when it is in rut, it rushes forward because its mind is not strong 
enough to withhold it from danger. 

(2) Damanepi-driptam. 

Though sought to be tamed and subdued, acting in an un- 
controlled and unrestrained way. How many elders in society, or 
at home, and how many good friends check us in our mad career 
of sin? Do we pay any heed? We think they are fools and old- 
day cronies, and that we know better, with the result that, haughty 
and turbulent, we rush into error. 

The mahout does his best to prevent the elephant from run- 
ning amok 1 going astray. The rash elephant does not obey his 
command a,nd even when he pricks into its Head by the ankusa 
(restraining liook or goad) it does not min,d but tries to throw 
him out and rush on in its rash career, uncontrollable. 

(3) Snaatvaapi-dhuli-rasikam: 

After a bath, having a taste for dirt. A very fitting des- 
cription of the human taste for filth. In every human soul there 
appears to lurk a desire to descend low in thought, word and, deed. 
Only a few have the courage to resist and withstand that desire. 
The rest simply succumb. . 

After over an hour's arduous time in water, the mahout rub- 
bing the elephant clean, the moment the elephant gets out of water 
it takes hay, grass, and .other rubbish nearby, and puts them on 



188 D&YAA SATAKAM 

its own head and strews them over its body. Its taste for dirt 
is so strong. 

; (4) Bhajane<api bheemam: 

- Frightful even when praised and placated. Tondaradippodi 
'Atwar has sung about hims'elf: &iesr^^i^)<so Q&jbpib ' Qns-rrm&^ 
; $?#; GSflj<sfaGirjT6rrnr (angry at every .one and everything, 
f look daggers- at others, and shout at -them as if s^ittin^ 
fire). No wonder every one is afraid of such a person: * Swee't 
words intended to make him see reason, and climb down from 
the high altitude of great anger fall on deaf ears. Did Hiranya 
listen to the sweet words of his wife Kayaadu and his child Pfahlada? 
Did Ravana pay heed to the words of praise lavished on him by 
Malyavaan and Vibtieeshana calculated to wean him from his 
sinful path? So too, very often we discard the sweet and 
coaxing words of* praise and flattery emanating from .good persons, 
amd: remain terrible y frightful . to look at. Valmiki's description 
of Ravana is well worth being recollected in this connection, In 
one place Ravana is referred to as Bhooshitopi Bhayankaraha. 



Oftentimes even a trained elephant, which is normally very 
submissive and obedient, flares up, and on those occasion's however 
much the mahout may try to soften its temper by sweet. words, 
it becomes frightful and gets out of hand. In that state it will he 
teirible to look at, a mass of fury. 

The aforesaid four traits are all seen in me, as in the elephant, 
and therefore I am an elephant, says I>esikal But I am" no'w your 
elephant. Tvacf-vaaranam. ' So please catch hold of me 'and hblcl 
rite captive by your cftatns. Ah elephant does not easily get 
caught It tries to prevent people from catching it. The "words 
tvad vaaranam can 'also give this meaning, viz., obstructing you, 
preventing you. Nevertheless capture me ..... < . ; . ; 

\ H<D*W^ By the chains (srinkala) . of anugraha, 'Anugraha 
means' conferring a favour, rewarding. Your favour tow&rd's 
me should be the trading force chaining me: 

Anu-graha can also mean catching up from behind, (the rear). 
I am not easily capturable. So please come from behind and 
c$tch me unawares by throwing the 'chains of your anugraha (favour- 
ableness) without; my knowing it, -without 'my seeing it. De&ika 
seems to give tips to Daya Devi herself 'about how to capture 



DAYAA SATAKVM 1S9 

Baddhvaa-grihaana: Biia,d and capture. 

Parasara Bhatta has employed- the analogy-^ the elephant 
to describe Lord Ranganatha. In one verse of his Srirangaraja 
Stava he sings thus : ' 



n 

Lord Ranganatha, the majestic Elephant of Srirangam who, 
shines in the Scriptures Sanskrit and Tamil makes himself dirty 
by accepting my words (in His praise)." Who can prevent an 
elephant from indulging in its taste for dirt and rubbish soon after 
it has had a 'bath? 



- f The same words Snaatvapi-dhuli-rasikam have been used 
fittingly by Desika in this sloka to describe himself. In two otfrer. 
places in the course of his sweet stotras Desika again refers to 
himself as an elephant and his getting chained and bound,., , In. 
the Bhagavat Dhyana Sopana, he sings about 



This mind of mine which is like an elephant, always proud and: 
arrogant, (mad and wild), has been tied fast and tight to the two^ 
beauutiftil .hands of Lord Ramganatha as to a tying post, by means; 
of tite. shooting rays of the jewels adorning the Lord, 

In the Yathiraja Saptati, the elephant-anblogy is again worked" 
t6 perfection. '" ~ 



Ramanuja's feet are there enjoyed as the first chain (pratania 
nigalaim) that^binds the mind of the poet which is like an elephant 
hrrut, freely and playfully wandering about in the centre of the' 
big forest of cividya or ignorance. 

Ramanuja's feet (the acharya's feet) are the^rst chain. Daya 
is, the next chain as enjoyed in this sloka. Once caught in the grip, 
of the Acharyas, the soul is next caught (anu-graha) in Daya. 
And now it is caught for ever. 



190 DAYAA SATAKAM 



II (? oo) 

Naatahparam, kimapi me tvayi naathaneeyam 

Maatar-Daye mayi kurushva tathaa prasaadam i 
fcaddhaadaro VrisHagirlpranayee yathaasau 
T ^Muktadnubhoolim ihd daasyati me Mukundaha. u (100) 

Mother Daya! Beyond this, that I am now going to pray of you, 
there is nothing that I desire. Kindly confer on me this boon, viz., 
that this Mukunda, who loves (His residence in Tiruvengada Hill) 
Vrishagiri, exhibits great love and affection towards me, and confers 
on me here the bliss that Celestials enjoy (in Vaikunta). 
1 This is the 100th and last sloka of this stotra proper. There 
are eight more slokas but they are really in the form of an epilogue. 
The Sataka (centum) ends with this sloka. 

After extolling Daya and her qualities, in 90 slokas and after 
having sung 9 more slokas thereafter entreating Daya Devi to 
come to his help; Vedanta Desika makes known in this sloka 
to .Daya Devi what it is that he desires most. That there is one 
desire in his heart more than any other which he wants Daya Devi 
to fulfil; is shown by. the opening words of the sloka which say that 
beyond this there is nothing I desire to have from you. This is 
all that I seek of you and from you. 

He calls Daya here as Maatar-daye! Mother Daya! Jt is a 
very sincere and earnest and intimate prayer one that a child 
is prone to make to its fond mother. 

Please confer it pii me. Let it be your prasadam, favourable 
grant to me. 

Please grant that this Lord, asau Mukundaha,-~-3Rft 
this Mukunda, gives to me Muktaanuhhooti ^rR5J%, here, 
lha. He is a Mukunda, one who can confer" the^best of the here 
and hereafter, ^ (mu) means final emancipation, f (Ku) 
metos the earth. It is because the Lord can confer on His votarie^ 
all the pleasures- of moksha, as also all the pleasures of the earth; 
He is known as Mukunda. Here Desika co-ordinates the two 
pleasures and combines them into one and prays for it. : : - 



DAYAA SATAKAM 191 

He asks for muktaanubhooti or the enjoyment of the emanci- 
i souls, muktas. But he wants to get that enjoyment here 
i in this world. Where the Lord is, that is Vaikunta. The 
i is now in this Yirishagiri and He is here by choice. He 
i the place so. He is Vrishagiri pranayee a lover of Vrishagiri. 
reminds us of the famous purana sloka. 



II 

great Maayin (or Maayan LDirtuefr as Andal would have it) 
rding the great and glorious Vaikuntam revels along with 
sonsort (Lakshmi), WTT ^ Ramayaa Saha, on the banks of 
ni Pushkarini (the tank called Koneri in Tirumalai, next north 
e shrine of Lord Srinivasa). 

Then again He is a baddhaadhara TORT: one who evinces 

solicitude for, and loves, the bound ones (embodied jeevas 

are born and who die and are re-born in this world). The 

baddhadhara can be taken with the verb daasyati and made 

ean, give with love towards me. But the meaning suggested 

;r will be found to be more appropriate when set off against 

taanuboothi. In giving the bliss of Moksha to the Muktas, 

is no special point or merit. So too in giving that bliss in 

inta, there is nothing specially noteworthy. But to give 

aanubhooti to baddhas, and to give it here (lha), - they will 

>ecial and noteworthy features which normally He may not 

:o give, and will give only at behest of His beloved Daya Devi. 

fore Desika makes it his heartfelt and earnest prayer to Daya 

:he Lord should vouchsafe that celestial bliss to him even 

on this earth. 

The ancient Srutis have in places touched upon this state, 
i can be referred as jeevan mukti in one sense (see commentary 
>ka 44 above) ; but by far the more numerous passages there 
to an Utkranti, a going up, to a different and higher world. 
"amil scriptures also touch upoifthe state of Mukti in Vaikunta 
Iso in this world itself; but here the weightage is in favour 
ikti being attained and enjoyed here. Nammalwar, Andal 
liirumangai Alwar have made no secret of the fact that their 
is not for the pleasures of Paramapada (Vaikunta) but for 
Muktas here. Their realisation is very beautifully and succin- 



192 DAYAA SATAKAM 



u 



All the pleasures that the Nityasooris derive in serving the 
in Vaikunta, our little great ones of this world (^^LG/TLD^ 
who have learnt the Tamil Vedas, enjoy with delectation he 
this earth itself. As a premier Dramida-Sakha-adhyayee (V/?^ 
&ily) L&mtr)Qujrr<sGr) Vedanta Desika therefore prays ir 
sloka not for being taken to Vaikuntaloka but for being bi 
with the bliss of Vaikunta here itself. 

That this is not a mere casual or temporary or poetic mo< 
Desika's part, but is his definite and deliberate longing, is s 
by his prayer to Lord Ranganatha and Lord Varadaraja else^ 
In the Abheedstava in praise of Ranganatha, Desika desir 
obtain in this world the enjoyment of the celestials of Pai 
pada. spf fottlWfir TjfajfpS f%%rf| (Note the use of the 
Mukunda here also). Addressing Varadaraja of Kanchi, D 
says if certain enjoyments are vouchsafed to him here, this 
will itself become Vaikunta ^RnT^T ^r^q^T 3PT3PT ^ Sar 
will itself become moksha. 

Every prapanna, every true Vaishnavite who has imbibe 
spirit of Ubhaya Vedanta will only pray thus. The desire to : 
Vaikunta will not be his. The Lord however, may think o 
wise, and in the fullness of time may take such a one to His 
Loka, Vaikunta. That has nothing to do with the yearnii 
the human heart. Note the $" in f 



By two very significant epithets used here to denote the I 
Desika justifies this craving of man to get all glories, plea 
and benefits here itself; QugiGuQ&eowrrLb g)/s/G# jsnrw QL 
i/rr. One is r is ha girl Pranayee, and the other is Baddhadhc 
as referring to this Lord. The suggestion seems to be that > 
the Lord Himself loves this place, and has great fondness fo: 
mortals here, why opt for something which will be contrai 
what He manifests ? Will we not be rejecting His preferred 1 
here, if we aspire for something far away, to give which He ; 
not have descended into this earth at all, as the Lord of Tim 
gadam. 



BAYAA SATAKAM 193 

Vedanta Desika in line with the great Acharyas he follows, does 
not subscribe to the view that the Archa or the image in Temple 
is a mere step towards the Infinite, a stepping stone to attain higher 
altitudes of spirituality. To Desika the Archa is in itself the 
Primary God. To those who are not gifted enough to rise to 
Desika's heights and see the Highest Truth in Lord Srinivasa, 
the prayer made by him in this sloka may not mean much. But 
to those steeped in the Ubhaya Vedanta lore, synthesised and handed 
down to posterity, by great Acharyas like Nathamunigal, Yamuna- 
charya and Ramanuja, Lord Srinivasa is Para Brahmam, 
and enjoying Him here is Moksha. To them there is no prayer 
worth making than the one contained in this sloka. 

This sloka is the summit of this stotra, the hundredth of the 
sataka. Addressed to the Lord's Daya, it depicts the summit 
of human aspirations which lies in the enjoyment of beatitude 
with the Lord who resides in the summit of Yrishagiri, and also 
in the summit of the srutis. srRr ftirftr ft^% Wfrfw ftf^n% ST^Tcf 
jjjq- qif^r?f sffwT ^fefiFTT Srutf-sirasi-Videepte-Brahmani-Srinivase- 
Bhavathu-Mama Parasmin-Semushec-Baktiroopa, was Ramanuja's 
opening prayer voiced in the very first sloka of his Sri Bhashya. 
Following in his wake Vedanta Dssika has equated Srinivasa with 
Para Brahmam, and Mokshananda with the enjoyment of that 
Brahmam here. 



Nis-seema Vaibhava Jushaam. mishalaam-giinacmaam 
Stotur-Daye Vrishagirewa guneswareem tvam \ 

Talreva noonam avawirabhawanditam me 

Satyaapitam tavahaJaalakutobhayatvam n (101) 

Daya Devi ! Even while all the other gonas (attributes) of in&iite 
glory, pertaining to the Lord of Vrishagiri, have been looking on with 

unwinking eyes, I have praised yow, their Empress, Those very gonas 
are involuntarily congratulating me (for having praised you). 



194 DAYAA SATAKAM 

The poet's sense of relief at the safe completion of the stotra 
can be sensed from the sentiments voiced ; n this sloka. When he 
began to praise Daya, one of the numerous attributes of Lord 
Srinivasa, it became incumbent on him to show her off to advantage 
by belitling the other attributes, and in places subordinating even 
the Lord before Daya. By extolling Daya and assigning to her a 
place above the Lord Himself, Desika must have felt that the Lord 
may not take him amiss; possibly He might also feel glad. But 
in regard to the other gunas (qualities)of the Lord, such as Gnana, 
Bala, Aiswarya etc., the poet was not quite sure tha t he will be winning 
their approbation by singing the praises of one like them, and in 
places setting them off against her to their disadvantage. This 
fear must have been lurking in the poet's mind. Now that the stotra 
has been completed without obstacle, the poet heaves a sigh of 
relief, and at the same time gets the idea that the other gunas have 
really applauded his hymn of praise about Daya, and the way he set 
about it. While thanking them and praising them for it, Desika 
adroitly sings Daya's praise in a new way. 

Nisseema- Vaibhava-Jushaam-gunaanaam. Seema is boundary 
or limit. Nis-seema is limitless. The Vaibhava or glory of the 
gunas of the Lord are limitless. They have all been praised by the 
Srutis. In fact the srutis alone have postulated them. 

Those gunas have been watching Desika sing the Daya Sataka. 
They have been so watching with eyes wide open mishataam. 
Appreciation as well as concentration is indicated by this reference 
to wide open eyes. When intensely looking, the eyes forget, or 
omit, to wink. And in admiration the eyes get opened wide, and in 
the process, winking is suspended, 

Now that I come to think of it, the poet seems to say, there is 
nothing surprising in the other qualities of the Lord, not only 
not getting angry at Daya being ^praised, but positively becoming 
happy and pleased thereby. For Daya is Guneswari, the Empress 
among Gunas. She has once^before been referred to as Guneshu- 
Saarvabhaumi ^pfa ^TFNfcft (sloka 30) And no subject is going to 
take offence if the King (or Queen) ruling over him or her is praised. 

Therefore they themselves t^r felicitate the poet on his Daya 
stotra. That they can't help doing so is indicated by the word 
avasaihi. They do so spontaneously involuntarily, whole- 
heartedly. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 195 

Readers will be aware of Kalidasa's famous saying Aaparl- 
toshaat-vidushaam na-saadu manye. No poet is satisfied until and 
unless he obtains the approval and approbation of the learned and 
the wise. This poet of poets, Vedanta Desika, therefore talks here 
with satisfaction and pride about the approval and appreciation, 
which the other qualities of the Lord are lavishing on his Daya stotra. 
Elsewhere also there are several similar expressions in Desika's 
works (e.g.) Vahampaayana-Saunaka-prabrutayaha - Srehtaassirah- 
Kampinaha, where reference is pointedly made to the approbation 
of the great Maharishis. 

From the fact that the other gunas, who have been referred 
to in the course of the stotra in not very complimentary terms, 
have ungrudgingly congratulated Desika for his having praised 
Daya, Desika weaves out one more praise-worthy feature in Daya 
Devi. Her strength and support are capable of dispelling fear 
from the mind of her adherents and votaries. Where Daya is 
favourable, there is no need to entertain fear from any quarter. 
The Upanishads have in several places spoken of the fearlessness 
of those who rely on the Lord. ^Tfe 



They have nothing to fear, nobody to be afraid of. That 
courage and fearlessness, it is here pointed out, are the result of 
reliance on Daya's strength. Incidentally one more plume is added 
to Daya's attractive and all-round greatness, a greatness always 
associated with the Lord, but one which He really acquires through 
Daya Devi. 

The word %" (me)at the end of the 3rd pada of the stotra is 
so placed that it can be taken with the word abhinanditam that 
precedes it, as also with the word Satyaapitam, that follows it. 
Desika* s dexterity in handling words is indeed superb, "In my case 
he seems to say, "felicitation by the great gunas has taken place, 
and also the establishment of the truth that there is no cause for 
fear for those who rely on the strength of Daya. 



1% DAYAA SATAKAM 

Adhyaapi tat Vrishagireesa Daye Bhavatyaam 

Aaramhhamaatram anidampratamastiiteenam \ 
Smdarsita-svapara-ntrvahanaa-sahetaaha 

Mandasya saahasam idam tvayi vandino me. (102) 

Daya of Vrlshagtreesa! Even for those primordial Siymns (the 
Vedas) praise of you is still (even to-day) only IE the Initial stage. 
In respect of such a you, this dull-witted person (i.e., myself) who is 
only a Vandhi (encomiast) has been guilty of great audacity (in weaving 
out a complete poem of 100 siokas). This audacity on my part 
has to be pardoned by you, demonstrating thereby your capacity to 
forgive, and to make others forgive, 

In this sloka Vedanta Desika tenders his apology for having 
sung the Daya Sataka. He calls his attempt a Saahasa. *rrir 
a rash and audacious act. "Fools rush in where angels fear to 
tread." Desika's apologia is conceived in that same way. He 
refers to the fact that the ancient srutis, which are the first and 
foremost hymns of praise, have if at all, but very vaguely hinted at 
Daya, and hft the matter there, without elaboration or elucidation. 
The srutis evidently felt unequal to the task of adequately praising 
Daya. But here I am, says Desika, a mere Vandhi a Vaithaalika, 
one who is employed in palaces to sing the praise of royalty, and a 
raandha ^ a person of weak intellect, who has had the boldness, 
if not affrontery, to sing a whole stotra about that self-same Daya. 
So saying, Desika prays for pardon. He has to be pardoned by 
the Srutis, and he has to be pardoned by Daya Devi herself. He 
appeals to Daya and prays that she may be pleased to pardon him, 
and also secure to him the pardon of the Vedas. This dual capacity 
of Daya is referred to by the expression Sva-para-nirvahana 



She can forgive apacharaas committed in regard to her. 
She can also get others to forgive the faults and sins of commission 
and omission in regard to those others by those others themselves. 
How else has she been able to secure for us the protection of the Lord, 
and made Him ignore, overlook, aad forgive our enormous sins? 
That Daya Devi is herself capable of saahasaas has been referred 
to in sloka 71 above. So she can appreciate well-intentioned and 
well-meant saahasaa in others. Only it must not be the atisaaha- 
sas referred to in sloka 94. " Daya is audacious in seeking to get 
protection even for me", says Desika, "why should I not be equally 
audacious, and sing the praises of such a great and bold benefactor?" 



DAYAA SATAKAM If7 



qt 



>&ye tvadanubhava+inahaamburasau 
Praachetasaprabrutuyop! param tatastaaha i 

Tatraavateernam-atalasprusam-aaphitam-maam 

Padmaapateh Prahasano chit am aadriyethaaha. (103) 

Daya Devi! It looks as if even great persons like Valmlki 
have confined themselves to the shores of the great and mighty ocean 
of your glory y (Le., stopped short of stepping into the waters). J got 
into that ocean, was very soon lifted oif my feet, and hegaii to flouftdetf 
(float). And thereby I became the object of fun and ridicule to the 
Consort of Lakshmi, who sweetly smiled at my audacity, and 
consequent discomfiture. You please take me in your protection. 

The poet had thought of the Vedas in the first instance andsumg 
in the previous sloka about his having done something they had 
omitted to do. In this sloka, he thinks of the Upa-Braharnanas 
(The Ithihasas and the Puranas) and how there is no full-fledged 
praise of Daya in any of them. It dawns upon him once again. 
that he has purported to do something which the authors of those 
great works, Itihasas and Puranas, deliberately left unuttempted. 
He compares his state to that of one who foolishly plunges into 
an ocean, when all wise people carefully stick to the shore. 

Praachetasa is Valmiki. Praachetasa Prabrutayopi, esveti 
Vahniki and others like him. What did they do? They were 
param tatastaaha, they very much confined themselves to the shore* 
being afraid of getting into the sea, or rathar of being drawn into it* 
They stuck to the shore so firmly, to terra firma in preference to 
the sucking waters of the sea. 

And what is that sea or rather ocean? Tvad-anubhaava maha 
amburaasi. The great ocean of Daya's glory. Hitherto Daya 
was referred to as a water-course, lake, river, sea and so on. 
Here it is Daya's glory (tvad anubhaava) t^^T^n^T that is the 
mahaamburasi, ocean. Afraid of being drowned in the waters of 



198 DAYAA SATAKAM 

shore stayers. When compared to the srutis, theltihasasand Puranas 
deal a little more with Daya. Hence the reference to those authors 
as taking their stand on the shore of Daya's glory. The use of the 
word 'Praayaha* also indicates this, that they were mostly tatastaas. 

On the other hand, what is it I have done? Undaunted, I stepped 
in and plunged into the ocean, only to find that the depth of it 
was too much for me, I could not fathom its depth, could not 
touch the ground underneath. I was lifted up, and made to float 
and flounder. Fool that I am, I was not deterred by the several 
great souls like Valmiki not daring to come even near the water 
line, and I took my plunge, Sri Desika seems to say. 

Three words have been employed here to show the three stages 
(1) avateernam (2) a-talasprusam and (3) aaplutam, (1) getting 
down into the waters. (2) unable to get a foot-hold on the ground, 
and (3) lifted up by the buoyancy of water, and made to float. 

Tala-sprik or ground-toucher, is a term used to indicate a 
person who knows a thing fully well, knows all about it, its pros and 
and its cons. Atalasprisa used here is intended to show how unin- 
formed Desika is about Daya. He seems to suggest by the use of 
that term about himself, that he has not really understood about 
Daya's greatness and glory. As soon as he gets in, he finds himself 
lifted off his feet, and unable to touch ground. This is not a case 
of a gradual depth. It is a sudden and abrupt depth, as is indicated 
by avateernam followed by atalasprusam. The wise men knew, 
and hence desisted from getting in. 

The ever watchful Lord and His Consort have been witnessing 
all that Desika does, and gets involved in. And Their lovely lips 
get curved in a sweet smile. It is like fond parents watching the 
toddlings of their darling child, and getting amused thereat. That 
the Lord loves tatastaas was shown even in the 9th sloks. He is 
a big ocean of Daya, Karunaa-Varunaalayam. But He discovers 
and discloses Himself only to tatastaas^ those who stand on the 
shore, aghast at the immensity of His Swaroopa, Roopa, Vibhava 
etc., realising the truth of the Upanishadic saying * Avignaatam 
Vijaanataam Vignaatam Avijaanataam* . Vrishasaila tatastaas, 
were therefore rewarded by Him by His disclosing Himself to them 
as the Resplendent Lord of the Seven Hills. So too the tatastaas 
like Valmiki were very much beloved of Him and were the recipients 
of His Grace in an extraordinary measure. 



BAYAA SATAKAM 199 

*."*' Vedanta- Desika instead of emulating those tatastaas* behaves 
contrariwise by plunging in. So in an "I told you so, " mood the 
Lord smiles on seeing Desika's- discomfiture, floundering- in the 
depths of Daya. . . . , 

He does ncft smite alone but in concert with His' ' Conso'rt, 
Padmavati. Leelaras'a, or the sweentess of sport, is indulged in by 
the 'Lord and His spouse, Lakshmi. They therefore enjoy this 'rasa 
also; and smile. That the smile is not one of disdain or Contempt, 
btif ' one of love and endearment is indicated by the Upasarga 
pifa prefixed to hasana. (hasana can also mean ridiculing). 

'. v However much the child may realise the fondness of its parents, 
wjien they smile at, its discomfiture, it is apt to feel hurt. lit that 
0if>od Desika appeals to Daya Devi and prays, please take me 
iji. your protection, ^aadriyelgaha snfersFT: This is the last 
pijaye&pf Desika to Daya Devi in this stotra. In fact this is the 
last^of ,tl|Q slokas in this stotra addressed to Daya Devi. 



Vedantadesikapade vinivesya baalam 

r ; ; ; ,.De^o >Day.aasatakam etad avaadayan-maam i 

atHacffikena vidhinaa sanidye griheelam 

Wsesham'iva Venkatasailanaathaha " ' (104) 



Deva.who is the Lord of Venkatasaila has placed (me) 
this inlfiiit" on the Peeta (pedestal) of Vedantacharya and has made 
e give out this Daya Satakam, even as a rasika takes up a veena 
^, delightful mood dictated by the enjoyment of leela (sport), and 
. that veena sing beautifully. , . * 

tf. . In this sloka which is fraugBi with several very great and 
importantmeanings and suggestions, tha chief idea is that, of saivika- 
i^ga. "^Pffw^WFT* To the vishistadvaitin everything is- the 
L-ord^^Shd.must be offered up to the Lord. This must be done 
in tlfe^hmefold way of swaroopatyaga, kartrutva^tyaga'and ph'ala- 
tyga', hThe central idea of this sloka is that by himself the poet 

...-.-- 



atrawBUK'.!- 



200 DA.YAA SATAKAM 

Daya Sataka, and that it is the great Lord wha resides, on Venkata- 
chala, and has an infinite instinct for sport, that has really made 
Desika give out this Daya Sataka, The analogy is of a great 
musician (Vainika vidwan) taking up a veena, when the muse is 
on him and he feels like indulging in it, and making it give out 
delicious and delightful music. The musician here is Lord Srini- 
vasa. The veena is Vedanta Desika. The Lord who has played 
this Daya Satakam on the Veena of Vedanta Desika is very aptly 
referred to as " Devaha " ^T:. The word " deva " not only 
denotes divinity, but also a taste for sport or kreeda sfrsT. The 
words 3FTC *T|frf " Samaye griheetam" arc also very aptly used. 
The vainika vidwan and the veena are always there, but it is only 
on occasions that the niood comes on the vainika and it i& that 
period that is indicated by the word " samaye "~~ at the proper 
time. So also in regard to the Lord and Vedanta Desika, the 
word "samaye-'* has got very great significance*. The Lord '.did 
not think it fit to &ing Daya Sataka by Himself, or through others; 
before this Stotra was suixg through Desika. So also Desika 
was chosen as the fit and apt instrument, through which Daya 
Sataka has to be given out to the. world, at a particular point of 
time (samaya) in his life. The word " samaye " therefore indicates 
the coalescence of the Lord's sankalpa (desire) 16 *sing the praise 
oC Dalya Sataka through Desika, and De$ika*s own sukrita (good 
deeds) entitling him to that benefit. 



Desika here has referred to himself as "baalaha" 
Baalaha means an infant, an immature person. This word is 
employed here by way of naichanusandhana, the anusandhaana 
or expression of one's smallness and incapacity, felt out of a sincere 
sense of humility. In Tamil it is called " ^^<a/tuL-.Kii> " 
(avaiadakkam). The idea sought to be conveyed is, that just 
as the veena, which though incapable of giving out musical notes 
of its own accord, at the touch of the deft fingers of an expert 
vainika gives out pleasant and melodious notes which are enchan- 
ting and rapturous to the hearers, so too, though by himself Ve<J^nt4 
Desika may be nothing and may almost be akim to an avhetend 
(inert matter) like the veena yet the clever ad capable Lord 
has utilised him to give out Daya Sataka to the world. The word 
" baala " reminds one of the Brahadaaranya Upanishad. One of 
the mantraas there says that, after having learnt: everything that is 
worth learning, the great ones will be like children: H^ 



Though it might not have been Desika's intention, yet the word 
" baalaha " employed is so apt and applicable to- the greatness 
and scholarship of Vedanta Desika. As he has stated about 
himself in the Sankalpa Sooryodaya, by the age of 20 he had mas- 
tered all the vidyas (branches of learning). His learning and his 
modesty are by-words in the history of Vaishnavism. Though 
in the sphere of controversy he bowed to none, in regard to his 
conduct through life, he was child-like and simple in the extreme, 
sjiort in stature and unassuming and modest by nature. 

The opening words of the sloka " Vedantadesika pade 
vinivesya baalam " are to be understood and enjoyed in the context 
of a great event in Desika's life, gratefully mentioned by him in 
several places in his own works. Born in the year 1268 A.D. 
in Karicheepuram, this Acharya who was named Venkaianatha 
by his parents, stayed for a number of years at Tiruvahindrapuram 
(near Cuddalore New Town in South Arcot District in the Madras 
State) where he did penance, and acquired the prasaada or bounty 
of the Lord. Then he travelled far and wide, and visited almost 
all the sacred places in this holy land of Bharata-varsha from 
Badrinath to Cape Comorin. Having returned to his native place 
Kancheepuram, he was living there for several years, leading the 
life of a true Vaishnavite Acharya. A call came to him then from 
Srirangam, the headquarters of great acharyas from Alavandaf 
downwards. It was a command from Lord Sri Ranganatha Him- 
self, the Presiding Deity of that place and indeed was couched 
as such: " Sreemat Sri Ranganathasya Vishvaksenasya saasanam." 

The reat and celebrated 



annual Adhyayana Utsavam of that place (inaugurated by Tiru- 
niangai Alwar centuries ago) was objected to and its performance 
obstructed by Advaitins who protested against the importance 
given to the Tamil works of the Alwars known as the Divya Pra- 
bhandam, very highly venerated by all the Sri Vaishnava Acharyas 
from the time of Nathamunigal of the ninth century A.D., To 
establish the sanctity and supremacy of the Divya Prabhandam 
by refuting the arguments of of Advaitins against the Tamil language 
and against introducing the Tamil Scriptures into Temple rituals, 
Desika's services were requisitioned by the Acharyas then residin^ 
at Srirangam. Desika readily started from Kanchi and reache 



DAYAA SATAJKAM 

wide scholarship, keen intellect, and polemic skill,-; and;, above 
his deep and abiding devotion and admiration for the. TasE&il 
es of the Alwars, vanquished the adversaries and niade them 
>pt the Prabhandas, especially Nammalwar's Tiruvoimozhi 
Sa^ras-saraswataanaam m<HU<*c(dM( and Samhita-Saamn 
umee tt"f^wi<frfWl' (as the quintessence of 'language, and.*w 
empress among Samhitas). The Adyayana -.Utsavam was 
>red, and celebrated more grandly .than in previous years. 
Lord Sri Raftganatha in recognition of this great a'chievemerff 
edanta Desika is said to have conferred on him the title " V$dan- 
arya." For the authenticity of this happening and this honour 
5 to Desika, we are not left to rely on the admiring utterances 
disciple or follower, or on mere tradition. For, this 'incident, 
conferment of this title by the Lord, has been gratefully acknow- 
ed by Desika himself in his works. The second half of the. 
sloka of his Adhikafana Saravali runs as follows: 



MS a definite and categorical statement that lite great Lordj 
give,s a form and a name to this universe and .everything that 
ere, was graciously pleased to bestow on Desika 1 the saiiignyai 

" Vedantacharya." A samgnya is a name or noun having 
scjal meaning and peculiar significance ,( by the use of whicb 
son is. definitely indicated to the exclusion of the rest>, Desika 
* vain enough to refer to it as. a title or biruda fsn^r: he calls; 
Ddestly a samgnya. But what'^rname ! VEDANTACHARYA" 
e is only one. Vedantacharya and that is the Lord Himself/. 

Vedantakrit , Vedavidevachaaham , (Gita); He has/bee^ 
ed to confer that name and that appellation on Venk 
>oet of Kanchi. , But when one, cojnes to thi^fotf if, 
wner ,of,a tliijig'^r name can give it away -to another 
,t ether's own ? This is also pointed out by this same 
s Stotra ( Bashya (Commemiary on the Stotra^ Ratna) it -' 
said S vakam-iti-Hari-daitam-N igamantacharyakam .^w^ 
f ... ^i*i^it=ii^ (Nigamanthlcharyatva given to me 



s His own, to be kept as my own). As alrea'dy 
of " Vedantacharya " title is referred to in ever so; , 
i in the numerous works of this prolific writer in three language^ 
rit, Tamil, and Manipravala, This is not the plac.e 



D&YA SATAKMtf 20$ 



together and catalogue all those -references in the 
to '.this very .unique event in hisiife. ".-.<; \. i. ! .; '.'. . . .: 

'*' But how comes it that what Lord Ranga*na : th of Sriraiigaafti 
did' is Attributed to Lord Srinivasa of Tirupati, and r why has it 
been suriglhat.Veiikafasailanatha plac'ed this- poet on the ped'eMl 
of Vedantacharya ? The answer is furnished .not only by the 
general and .well known, theory that all the Lords ,m the several 
temples are one and "the same, but by a special identity .jiet^een 
^aAgapiatha and Erinivasa enjoyed by TiruppanahVar, injhe, "third 
verse of l"iis B ." Amalaiiaadipi'ran; ." eut^&suria&L.. 

" 



great , JLord of Vaikunta first alighted oii_,yenkatachala ' ^ wh.e.rq. 
te "sjopd for a time before joirig to Srirangam and lying down 
tkere,on His serpent ^couch. So it is quite proper and apt to^sai 
th^'f^pjd Srinivasa gave to Desika the name and title Vedantacharya.^ 

5 J; Achary^a^ndDesfkaaire synonymoiis-and^plerchan^ablet^iw^ 
and^so; u yda]ntacharya and Vedanta Desika convey the sa$%e.ttisaAH 
ingjinrThe "poet -whose -naiiie was ' Venkatanatha or ^Venkatesa- -hat 
ever -since b^eiv; known as Yedanta Desika 'anfeVedantacha^y% 
because that was the, appellation; that the Lord had-^ivem.teihiT^ 

Another incident in Desika ? s life-has' to 'be" recapitulated' hete- 
WHile he was "only five years of age, a veritable baalaha : ^M : 
Besika was the" recipient of the blessings of his praachafya/^i^W/ 
Vaatsya Vatadacharya (Nadadoor Animal) -ill the following Words 5 ? 



The, promising and precocious child ,was to become an 

ol j Vedanta, .( Ve d a ^ taw P ra Uf htaapaka). When, ;he, : became 

^H^y^t^J^*, 1 , 10 ?- n ;t of OIKJ Y ed .^ ta but .of ^two^yeda 
Sanskrit and Tam|, 4^e r: Ubhaya,:WdanLta,-th^ L<^d, Hmiself g^ve 
him tlie r name. and : title of Vedautacharya. .. Tliis bless,ing receiv^ 
in early life has been very, ^thankfully and gratefully/ reqprdQd. |>x 
Desika in the Sankalpa Sooryodaya v an4 in the second t sbka of^ 
Adhikarana Saravali. A sketch in colour, on the ceiling of the, 
Pradakshinaof |-ord Yaradaraja's shrine on.the.Hastigiriin Kanchoe- 
depicts this incident in Desika's life.. . -j / v - -/, 



204 DAYAASATAKAM 

This great honour was bestowed or him when he .was literally 
a child, a baala.lt looks as if the Lord only put His sanction and 
seal on what a great Acharya had done. He once again made 
true what a true and sincere devotee of His had said. ?atyam- 
vidhatum-nija-bhritya-bhaashitam. ?Sczf f^TT^T 



That the Vedantacharya-pada bestowed on him is really a 
ubhaya-Vedantacharya-pada is also very subtly and beautifully 
demonstrated by this great poet in and by this sloka. This Daya 
Sa.taka has been, it is said, sung by the Lord with Desika as a 
Veena-visesha, an excellent Veena. Adhikaraiia Saravali .which 
avowedly deals with the Brahma Sutras and the Sri Bhashya is a 
treatise on the Sanskrit Vedanta. The penultimate sloka therein! 
conceived in the same saatvika-tyaga style as this sloka of Daya 
Sataka, refers to the Lord having given out that Adhikarana Sara- 
vali employing Desika as a conch, paanchajanya ...... 



Here the Daya 

Sataka has been given out in the form of the sweet and mellifluous 
notes df the Veena, the softest of musical instruments. The conch 
is a loud instrument employed in war as can be be seen from the 
first chapter of the Bhagavat-Geeta. Desika never sings casually 
and never employs words haphazard. The difference between 
the conch (shanka) and the veena is the difference between the 
two Vedantas, in both of which Desika had attained a high degree 
of proficiency. , The Sanskrit Vedanta involves polemic warfare. 
The Tamil Vedanta provides sweet and quiet enjoyment. Even 
the Lord finds great sweetness and attraction in the Prabhandas; 
for, they are Sadhyaha Paramaatmani chitta ranjaka tamaihi 

and Svaadu Suvyahritaani. 



And so they are like the sweet and pleasing notes 
issuing from the Veena. In fact the Lord Himself is sweet to the 
Alwars like the notes of the Veena. Vide turriltflen&Guj I and 
(LpGBrr$&turrt uuSw gjjT&isirtALSlssr (Lpj&rir &<stoGu($uj of Nammalwar. 
Daya Sataka is thus the quintessence of the Prabhandas, whereas 
Adhikarana Saravali is the summary of the meaning and import 
of the Brahmasutras, about which there are as many views as there 
are Bhashyakaaraas (commentators). Further elaboration is need- 
less. The Sanskrit Vedanta is like the Ganges, muddy, violent 
and forceful. The Dramidopanishad is like the Yamuna, dark, 
cool and pleasant. They were flowing as, two different streams 
till they were united and blended into one stream, the ubhaya 



DAYAA SATAKAM 205 

Vedanta system, by the mingling of the Saraswati (words) of Vedanta 
Desika, thereby bringing about a Triveni, a confluence of three 
streams. This is the contribution of Vedanta Desika to Vishistad- 
waita Siddhanta and Vaishnavite religion, for which he has been 
justly famous through the centuries. 

Even in regard to the form of satvika-tyaga indulged in in 
this sloka, Desika follows closely in the footsteps of Nammalvar. 
In the 9th Tiruvoimozhi, in the 7th Pathu, Nammalwar has stated 
that his verses were sung through his mouth by the Lord Himself: 

fg)esr&GSi GT&sriSlgjgi &ar Q&rr 
u>mu<5sr t (Making it appear as 
if these are my words and my verses, the Lord has really sung 
about Himself by His own words). 

Jn regard to Daya Sataka the singer is the Lord, of course, 
through Desika. But the subject of the song is not the Lord Him- 
self, as it was in the Tiruvoimozhi, but Daya Devi. Daya Devi 
being fy$ consort of the Lord, He probably felt it delicate to 
Hinjjself sing her praise; for that purpose probably He Himself 
came into this world as Sri Thoopul Venkatanatha (Vedanta Desika) 
and has sung Daya's praise in the form of this Daya Sataka. Desika 
has been claimed and acclaimed to be an incarnation of Lord Srini- 
vasa, and certainly one of the chief purposes of that incarnation 
must have been to sing about Daya to whome He owes His real 
greatness* an<i because of whose achievements he becomes * Visud- 
dhanam vaachaam stutipadam fe|4Hl" 3TRft ^fdM< (sloka 68 
ante) the subject of praise by the srutis. . 

Thus this sloka seems to give the Avataara-rahasya, the Avataa- 
ra-prayojana and the Avataara-karya of the author of this work, 
Vedanta Desika. 



Amavadhimadhikritya Sreenivaasaamtkampaam 
avitathavishayatvaad-visvam avreedayctntee i 



206 DMMft SATMCAM 

,i;vTMs<stotra begotten. hy;(of) Venkatesa^-twhich deals, abaitt 
lhe;< limitless: JDaya: of Lord Srinivasa,^which contains matter not 
one of 'which is untrue or false, and about which .therefore no one 
need fed .abashed or ashamed, rwhich is. a fountain-head for .all 
kinds of auspiciousness, and which is free from all fault or blemish, 
is sure to shine glorious in the eyes of all Saatvic men. 

In this and the next sloka Desika harks back to the Maalini 
. metre which, he .handled in the fourth deead. ..It is one 
of this .favourite: metres, and one with which he ends: several .of .his 



iany poets/ after th^maiif theme is over,' -evSn if "they 
Img further slolcatf % : Way n of winding up, 'those : slokas Vill be 
flat and commonplace. Not so-vVitli this master poet -One has 
enjofcihe language. and;,semtimeEts qofltam44;in J^ and 
a agree with what has been &tat$d 



/e v Tl%fine mediurn-of sksKa is emplbyed in this slofei 
" conflict f betw^erf l!okas 102 and 103* on the one 



whibh the poet ha 4 s talked 6f himself as the author 6f this stotra) 
: sloka 104, ori'tfie-btlier, (in which he said that the "Lord il 
was who 'gave but 'this stotra)? After -"all it is Venkafeia who-i^ 
Ihe'^tAlibV of fbls*Hymti of prdiSe. : (T^ 8 is aii ; ofeviotis referende 
to his r &avhig been named after the great Lord Venkatesa). Whether 
lr : 1)e Lor2 Vf Ybnkat"esa : of fhe- Seven -Hills 'or the poet Venkatfes^ 
of Kancfcej)uram this stotra -is- Vdnkatesa^prasobta^if^^^F 
^'* 



The word Stutihi ^fif: is of "the feminine gender. '"So the 
cBifd is a girf; ; * Tlie ; rest;of the Stotra describes the ; nature and 
qualifies* of this s 'excellent ^rlv '" 

Anavadhim - Sreenivaasaanukampqam - adhikrifya Concerning 
that limitless anukampa 6r f l)aya ofr Srikivasa.? The subject of 

this Stuti or Stotra is Dma. ^The.,<?hild, enjoys -t|ie blessings of 

I 'in v ., j'.- *. s ; r f- , . fi i 



Avitatha-vishayatvaat-visv^-aweed^ need be 

of anythipgjTOB^|i|iad|in ^i^^tp^^^e^use its contents 
are all avitatha sr^rq* falseless, i.e., true. * Vilatha means 
false: a-vitatha is tlifefefbre 'true. -^VKwiin: 'i^ 
avreedavantee sfrfllt^ff " -rii'eans, ; malc6s -it- unnecessary*^^ be 

" _ .. . ..... ,_.___._ *.%. " . . "V* 




DAYAA SAT AKAM 207 

L person as visaalaakshee, EttiHigft (broad-eyed lady), every 
concerned must feel ashamed. But when existing excellence 
uly and appropriately praised, every one feels happy. 
The girl has such high qualities like truth, purity and chastity, 
no one need in the slightest feel ashamed about her, but every 
can legitimately be proud of her. 

K/vW/>a-A'^a^ N eevi is the knot 

lady's garment. Jt also means the capital or principal sum 

lucing or earning interest or other profit by way of augmen- 

n. It may therefore be taken to refer to the source .or foimtain- 

Kusala refers to what is right, proper, auspicious and happy, 
stotra is thus said to be capable of yielding to those who 
Y it, welfare, happiness and auspiciousness. Vividha means 
d. For all sorts and kinds of happiness this Stuti is the source. 
Anavadyaaqxsm blameless, irreproachable. The stuti is 
less. The girl has faultless form and so, extremely handsome. 
Just as a girl born of a good family, having faultless character 
possessing a very attractive personality will be praised by 
ight-minded persons, this stotra also is highly appreciated 
iujoyedby Satvic-minded persons. (Compare Desika's enjoy- 
of Ramanuja's works in this same strain in the sloka ffi^q* 
Muni-bahumata-saara ...... .\ . of Yatiraja Saptati) 

There seems to be no limit to the sense of gratitude that Desika 

towards the Lord. He is thankful and happy that the^ Lord 

iven to him His 'own name, conferred on him a title that 

igs only to Him, and also given Mm the authorship of a 
is grandeur and excellence. . . " 



amidam udaaram samyag abhyasyamaanaan 
7 rishagtrim adhiruhya vyoktam aalokaycmtee i 
rasaranaam aadhirajye abhishinchet 



This GJr^e Qw) ?f ttwt WftWsr pf 
oj[ Yp^piri fp4 9ast h 

who corregfly ipd wfll rfP^ (*$ agaia an4 agpjq) tlf^s 
of verses^ which is capable of liberally conferring aU good;* and 
after dispelling all hostile forces and factors, she ^ill confer on them 
the Kingdom ruled over by persons who have no support but hers 
(Daya's). 

The previous sjtoka dealt with the benefits which can be ^btain^d 

by a study of this Stotra by extolling its excellence and incidentally 

indicating those benefits. This sloka is more avowedly a phqta- 

wuti <fi^5% for this stotra. The usual scheme indulged i|i by 

Many of "the Alwars in the last verse of each decadium of their 

is adopted h^i^e by E)esifea. It is to extol the Wisk^y vmlak- 

fhe wfet>$u v%ilakshmy<$ and the F^abanda Vailakshanya, 

amd^.f m to indicate th 00$ and gfeat things that will be obt^faed 

who Stedy th w^k. That i to say, exoeltence of tke 



by the study \hei;eof. Readers would h^ve no^ed how in sloka 
1Q5 the threefo|4 excellence (of the topic, author and work j-es- 
pectively) had b^i| dealt ^ith. This sjoka makes ^ofnted re.feTe^ge 
to the pfyatfl or fruit. It starts 6y reiterating the p^ab^dha-vaifak- 
sj^nya. This k a Satakam, a hundred. It i,s udaarani ^R^T 
generous and munifiqent. Iof|y and excellent, noble ^nd illutn9us- 
The Lord is all that and Daya Devi is also all that. This Satakam 
Dually with them ia alse 'udaamm. 

4f>fayjaasa i repetition, Samya^ is well an^ correctly. Sam^a 
ciifay^amaqnaQn, those who truly and well recite and repeatedly 
fceite. .^bsy ;,wiH Feeit* it again and again I enjoy to tMi |fe@att$* 
^:ttouties of language and soBtim^at emsMM4 ift ffa 
d- ito- in^ssantly cmt@e$^te ^ "tte $$t$s$& and glory 
HYi, a^ r itepic|ed thgrein. Just as the enjoyment of the 
is evtr ftesfr' and Eev^r italc ^jrsF^j(yi^kb and fac*TT^, 
tife Of the Stotra g]j}ft wft k ft^; Each time 

^ne reflect n a sloka of this poem, son^g new idea emanates, 
50a^new beauty c^mes tft the swrfase. it is a perennial stream 
of literary beauty j4 WtiBJjK tMt ..pste toft 

all the while, exl^|^w|; % ^fe E^ Aft 4M4 ***** 

realms of mystic conmm^^-^|% .ftfi i^g Iftm^ 



BAYAA SATAKAM 209 

Samyag-abhyaasa has been mentioned here to denote reci- 
tation and reflection of the Stotra with a full understanding of the 
meaning and significance of the verse, and not a mere parrot-like 
repetition. 

Those who revel in the language and the sentiment of this 
Satakatfn -will become the recipient of Daya's Kataksha (benign 
glances). She will see them well, and clearly vyaktcm aalokayanlee. 
She will see them from the heights of Vrishagiri on which she has 
got up. Vfishttgirim-adhiruhya-aalokayantee. Here it is plainly 
asserted that Vrishagiri is really the seat of Daya Devi, not so 
milch the Lord*s. TSfS'kfea is reinforced by the poet's deliberate 
omission to refer to the Lord im this sk*a 'as the Lord of Vrishagiri, 
bitt as Saiarflgadhamvaa, In all the 108 slokas of this stotra barring 
only a few, reference has been made to the Hill by ome name or 
another. In almost all of the large number of those slokas the 
Hill has been linked with the Lord. This (106th) fe one of the 
very few slokas in which tbete is a reference to the Hill, and yet 
the Lord is designated by another name. There seems to be no 
end to the literary devices indulged in by this poet to drive his 
point home. That there is a deliberately intended suggestion 
(dhvani sarftr) will be clear from the use of the word Saamga- 
dhanma., which in turn is calculated to remind the reader of sloka 
28, in which the Lord was referred to as Saaiiigee. It was in and 
by that sloka that we were told that Vrishagiri is the Lord's vi/aya* 
sthxma RwWfH- Why it is s, is explained in this 106th sloka 
by referring to Daya Devi as having ascended this Hilt^-FWsfta- 
girim-&cSiirul!iy* Tinimala is thus the capital city <rf Daya's 
Kingdom, and the Lord taking His residence there is essentially 
a Dayaavaan. 

From the top of Vrishagiri, Daya Devi looks graciously upon 
those who have mastered this stotra sung in her praise. And 
at once she dremchesj them in tfee cool awd life-giving stream of 
her protective Kataksha. Abkisheka literally means spriakMag 
water, or wetting and drenching. It is because the installation 
and As crowning of a King closely follow Ms being bathed witit 
" coronation water," the word AbMsheka has come to denote 
the installation of Kings. 

Tite Mgfa. aititude of Vrishagiri is conductive to give Ds 
Devi a good vision (vyaktamaalokafantec) of the entire earth sito 



210 DAYAA SATAKAM 

beneath. It is also helpful to Jet loose the cool and pleasant streams 
of her grace in which to bathe those in the plains, whom she thinks 
fit to be bathed therein. . So they are all coronated, to change 
the metaphor. She crowns them kings Abhishinchet. 

What is the Kingdom over which they are crowned? Anitara- 

^i^ The great kingdom 



reserved for those who look to no, one but the Lord and His Daya 
for help and protection. Aadhirajya, is sovereignty, overlordship. 
The. Kingdom of Heaven is the Kingdom of service to the Lord 
and His chosen devotees. This is referred to J)y Desika in several 
places as Kinkaratva-aadhiraajyam fa^Kl "if^ri^ *f the soverei- 
gnty of service. This is the sovereignty desired by those who are 
aniiamsQranaas, those .whose sole refuge is the Lord and the Lord 
alone, and who have no taste for, and do npt desire, any punishartha 
excepjt service to Him. Those ^ho are th$ recipients of E>aya ? s 
gracious Kataksha because of their having mastered this Satakanaj 
are installed as sovereigns in that Kingdom of Service, or Kainkarya. 
Worldly wealth, power and, position,, and even the .exalted posjs 
held by Brahma, Indra aijd .the qther Devas, are the gifts that 
Daya Devi bestows on Jier votaries who desire to obtain those 
preferments. But they ape gtit mitara~sara$aa$ or true ' paramai- 
kantins, for though they may look to the Lord's Daya alone foe 
help and assistance, their desires are not for the Lord and the 
Lord alone. They belong to the first three categories of persons 
whd approach the Lord, as mentioned in the-Bhagavad Gita, 
the aarta, the arthaarthi .and the gignaa.su. The fourth person 
there enumerated is the Gnani, who is .specially extolled by the 
Lord Himself as His soul What special gifts are reserved for th6 
Gnani who wants nothing of the Lord but service to the Lord, 
those are all available to the persons who master this centum of 
praise Daya Satakam. - 



The words Samita~Vimata-paksha& *afw faWTSTT meaning 
having conquered the enemies' forces haye to, be understood both 
in relation to the upasaka's foe$, and also to ,the opposing forces 
ranged against Daya. Both sets of enemies are conquered and 
the King is installed on the throne. 

Saarngadhanvaanukampa, the Daya of the wieldef of the 
Saarnga (bow). This mode of reference to Daya furnishes as it 
were the reason, for her ability to quell opposing forces. Is she 



112 



is unknown to her. She is agnaathanigrahaa 
She is a favour-bestowing mother to one and 
Or she is a mother desirous of bestowing all eaugrahas (viswa- 
aniigraha). 

The second phrase Pyatishajat-svargaapavargaam indicates 
her capacity to confer nil thfc pleasured of wivarga aiil of moksha. 
" Swarga " is here used compendiously to denote the first three 
purusharthas, dharma, artha, and kama; This phrase used towards 
the endof the gtdftft is veiy f&MMemt of the "words sootim*qpmarga* 
trivargayoho of stoka 10 ante, the first Moka in praise of D&ya 
in this stotra, If at ftta.ipa&Jtnw? >4M?MJ (beginning) of a-< 
itttt in itt mpammliaara ^H^f< (end) th^ - idea-- is 

e^r^sic^ to, and if one al^p finds that idea .very often dealt 
with in t&e course, of tte worl^, it lias to be taken that that Is the 
or tkegx^ Ta^fparya tffWM, of the work. JTest^dl 
these lin^aa,s flr^fT; or symbols, we can see that the c^nfernient 
t^ya of Dhatma Artha ^ind ^ama . pjimsharthas oi| t^ QIRC 
and ntoksha puru^artha on the other is what the author 
desires to DC understood as the chief idea aijd tlie prominent tlierne 
of ttie stotr^. 

That by nature -wat'Odnvctyod by 

tbtt first eftpi;e^si0n yuvamugrcthamaataram. That is her anugraha- 
smlatva 3i^^1^cf. Her capacity or power to confer those 
mvgrafaas m the shape of trlyar^a and apavarga is indicated by 
the second compound vyatishajat-svargaapavargaan^ This is Jtier 

The third epithet 



" sudhaa-sadreecheem " is intended to bring out Daya's intrinsic 
worth. Even apart from her anugrahaseelatva and phala-dana- 
ifcaW, she is by nature weet attd life-giving, like sudMa, 

Of ' 



has been praised in this, 

ia.,tbi& threefold way, Venkateswara tUvi has prai'sed Daya 
tfe wise* Pr^e of Dnya is itself mew. Praise in this wise 
(M) is indeed aovel. Wherefrom did th poet get inspiration to 
sing them? Bhaktya ^^TT Out of the intensity of his devotion' 
to Daya. 



Pausing for a ^offiemt, the poet looks back n thfe 
f the stodra; he tates a bird's ey^ view of tjbeir (torama) 
*eir ^assiication into tern dwad^ weli defined anddeaii|r 



SA WC4M 

out tty the varying metre in which each dO|d is 
QfQ*<&<tfft$ dscads, and thQ development Qf tJ^os^ topics 
^ ^Fai|n4oss sucqii^ct mann^, He wonders at fhf 
at the a^YslQpjnent, 4t th$ teufluage, at the, s^TOmt s 
ttet gQs to ixiake up for % e^eellenc^ qf the stotm 
prq4uct Qf Ufcrary, 41*4 at the same time yQligip^, a#; and the 
feeling grows on him that this must be the work fiat of a hiipiin 
mind and human hand^ but of that great an$ mighty Sankafpa or 
will of that great Lord of the Universe, a Sankalpa which he 
has himself described elsewhere as Visv^,paripalana-jagtro>|:a 

a sankalpa in praise oif whic|i 



great poet has hM^elf brought out a reat and grancj Srama 
the Sankalpa Sooryodaya. This idea is dealt wfth |n the 
second half of the sloka. 



Iha-padyaanaam-ayam-ktamaha ^ ^rarRf SI^PT: Here-of 

the versesitltfe/^ef, tyej ' jwrtfcjtgjr '&$& f verses in this 
stotra sung out of {fog pa^ dV9tioU,tf ^ pa^t towards Daya. 
The suggestion evidently seems to be thslt not even the poet's 
devq^Qft js i$sp$ftsftit9 %r t)wi gjofy ef thf llt*pt, but only the 
Sank,|jia qr will of the 1^4 that a Stotra ^houl4 emanate 
tliis pq^t |a this fQrm with all its fineness and finish- The 
pleased >^itji th^ ense of devqtion a^d adoratioii that the poet 
Jll^ln regar^ t ^^Y^ W^led that a- stotr^ of t^is nature shou^ 
come out from him. That will is referredto as Bhagavat Sankalpa, 

vatik of Bhagavam). That Safealpa in tur i& entirely Mjdheya 
to i^ya, i.e., depeacbat up@n IMya, aad sutotfifeftt to 
That .Sanka^-a is feerf equated ts a Kalgifea 'V'rtkdba, 
th* vyAfaai tme in f laicise whi^h is oafiabie 0f Mftllimf all 
expir<esd im its vtoimty. lust as tip aid tasty fell 

a 'mafigai' *e, fto tbte H ; alpaM tree @f tte Lord^s will DIM* veiws 
have faljen. Fruits are gathered from a tiee, ot the trefe is sfeafen 
ty teii^p hawi to- ^<? % fyiife fall dnw^., CWy Iwto that 

fip^ Mrift.be g%thep|d qr ip^ ta j^ll by 

ta pluQ 
tf tj^ Q^R ?cc(^4 in^pM fef tiki 

of % WfPFH| : gafc, Ttlit i^ ^showp, bf . % tfftrew* 

-4^ m *e lw of 





214 DAYAA SAIAKAM 

this Kalpaka tree has dropped this rich and plentiful lot of fruity 
verses. The mango tree is shaken by a hurricane, (Jhanjha-maa- 
ruth-dhuta). Who shakes the Kalpaka tree here? Daya Devi. 
She is the Jhanjhaamaaruta or the terrific wind which passes over 
the Kalpaka tree of the Lord's will and makes it shed these sweet 
verses of this lovely stotra. That is why the Sankalpa was talked 
of as Daya-vidheya. 

Daya is thus said to have been chiefly instrumental in Desika 
singing this stotra in her praise. She moved the Sankalpa or the 
will of the Lord and that Sankalpa in turn has produced this stotra 
through Desika, all because of Desika's deep devotion to Daya, 
a devotion equalling if not exceeding, his devotion towards the 
Lord Himself. 



Kaamam santu mithah-karambita-gunaavadyaani-padyaani naha ' * 
'Kasyaasminchatake sddambu-katake doshasrutim kshaamyati i 

Nishpratydoha VrisMadn-nu-jharajharatkara-chchalenochalan 
Deenaalambana Dfvya Dampati Dayaa kallola KolaahaJaha n (108) 

: Jn our verses let there, foe excellences and defects intermingled 
in abundance, But no one's fault-finding words in regard to this 
centum whtefa is capable of cleansing the hearts of the satvic-minded 
persons, ill ever be tolerated by the mighty onrush, and uproar 
of v the waves tff the helpless man's support, the Divine Grace of 
thfrt Dime Couple, in the guise of the falls and cascades of Vrisfaadri 
flowing with terrific noise. . 

: In slokas 104 to 106 the Stotra and the slokas in it were referred 
to in very appreciative terms. Sweet as the notes of the Veeira 
(104), a treasure-trove for all axispiciousness (105), and liberkl 
beyond words (106). They all sound like self-praise and the paet 
is not unaware of it. He adverts to the possibility of the slokas, 
some or all of them, being described by others as bereft of rnerit, 
and being full of faults, in language or sentiment or both. That 
however does not perturb him. For he has sung this hymn but 
of his Bhakti (devotion), and it is his humble offering at the feet 



DAYAA SATAKAM 215 

)aya conceived in humility and sung in all modesty. ' If people 
>se to pick holes in such a work, and/or discover faults, flaws 
foibles, no one need bother about it; the poet himself does 
mind it. For he is certain that Daya Devi will not tolerate 
adverse criticism of this work in praise of her, and that is 
igh for him. If he had sung it for his own glorification he 
Id have taken adverse criticism to heart, and either attempted 
spel it as unfounded and baseless, or if that was Hot possible 
pted the faults and admitted his errors. But in regard to a 
a like this, sung in the true Satvika tyaga spirit, where comes 
question of minding what others feel or say about it ? 

Every true devotee who has sung in praise of His God in the 
iss of his, devotion, if asked about the merits of his songs, will 
y admit that they may npt be sweet. Probably they are inferior 
. But it is sweet to the Lord in whose praise it is sung. And 
levotee rests content in that feeling. }SsfrtLi Ljsr&<sBm^<3uj 
tt&t^zrrr/bffiesfiu-itoJrrQfl)* After having sung 44 soulstirring 
5S about Lord Ranganatha, Vipranarayana, better known as 
idar^dippdoi Alwar,* winds up his Tirumaalai (J5)(n>Lo/r2tf) 
the above word's, which mean that though it may be inferior 
fen bad poetry, it will be sweet to his Lord, (OTii>i^r/r<s5r 
.ord and tiege). Desika has almost copied the words of that 
ir towards the" 'end of his classical Rahasya-traya-saara, wh,en 
ags 



ugh men with crooked and perverted minds may decty-the 
: by imagining faults and defects, it will taste sweet to tKe 
ort of Lakshmi with feet like flowers exhuding honey)/ This 
jloka.of Daya Sataka embodies almost the very 'Sentimeflts 
at* Tamil verse. . 



Oesika makes it clear by the opening words of th$ 
trie one told him about the existence of t faujts along witfc, 
bly, some merits, he was not going to join issue with him 
it. Kaamam >Santij ^TO^Ff is a trite ' :expi;ession to denote 
all means let it be as you say." ,Jt may also, mean " let there 
many faults as you would desire?" <-t *'""' 

The rest of the sloka explains why that is of no 
oet. Whose hostile Criticism is going to" be 



28 



216 DAYAA SATAKAM 

Daya Devi is certainly not going to allow them even to be 
heard. The words of critics will get drowned in the mighty noise 
(Kolaahala) of Daya's forceful flow imitating the noise of the foils 
of the Tirumalai Hill, even as a human voice will get drowned 
in the mighty roar of the waters of the Niagara fails. Readers 
will remember how in the course of the stotra the ilow of Daya 
had been likened to the cascades on the Hill of Yrishadri (e.g.) 
slokas 31 and 69. Nfrjhara is a hill cascade. 

What is it that rashes so mightily? Daya-kallok-kolaahalaha 
e hostile uproar of the rush of the waves of 



Daya. 

Whose Daya? Divya Dampati Daya. The Daya of the 
Divine Couple (Sri and Srinivasa). This epithet gives the clue as 
it were to the interpretation of the Daya of Vrishachalapati referred 
to in almost every sloka of this stotra. Really only the Daya of 
the Celestial Couple was talked of in all the slokas of this stotra 
though it was referred to as Srinivasaanukampa, Fadmaa Sahaaya 
Karunaa etc., in places, and more frequently as Daya Kripa Karuna 
Anukampa or even as the Daya of Vrishagireesa. Desika has 
elsewhere established that wherever the Lord or Narayana is talked 
of in the Srutis and other Shaastraic texts it invariably takes in 
Sri or Lairshmi also, as the two are inseparable and always go 
together. 

In this sloka there is one epithet or vhesJiana for the Sataka 
and one for Daya, The Sataka is referred to as sadambu4taka. 
Kataka is the cleaning nut plant, the nuts of which have gat fee 
power, when added to muddy water, of clearing the water trf umd 
and along with it dirt and impurity. Here the kataika, meaning 
thereby the sataka, (centum), is capable of cleaning and clearing 
the minds of saatvik type of men. It is clear Desika here is thinking 
of the beautiful Sloka in the Valmiki Ramayana (Balakanda, 
2nd Sarga, 5th sloka). 






The righteous minded men's minds will be cleared and pwified 
by a study of Daya Sataka. Just as the Kat&ka mxk makes the 
water free from mud and dirt, so also Daya Sataka is . 



DAYAA SATAKAM 21? 

of clearing the mind of all low thoughts and vicious tendencies 
and maintaining it in a pure and placid state. 

Daya is here described as Deenaalambana Daya* Daya the 
only help, or source of help, for all helpless beings. Deena 
means not only a poor and humble individual, but one who 
is miserable and wretched beyond measure and ever dejected and 
melancholy. Aalambhanam is support or prop. The outstanding 
quality of Dayu is the help rendered to those who are utterly helpless. 

The stotra started with solidified Daya, Daya. hard and huge 
like the Hill. It ends with the torrential flow of Daya, Daya- 
Kallola-Kolaahalaha ^n-^^fa-t?l <?i i ^i * 

May the Daya of Lord Srinivasa protect all of us! 



All Glory to Vedanta Desika 
All Glory to Lord Srinivasa 
All Glory to Srinivasa's Daya. 

# ** # # 

fosw 



INDEX OF SLOKAS 

SI. P. SI. P. 
31 -ft 

10 8 aft^yfo^cM ... 97 182 

... 61 98 

... 17 18 *: 

: 51 79 MUH<<tM ^ ... 9 7 

... 27 34 **HlEWHc3m ' ... 26 33 

75 132 +tw\ jPwi'* ... 28 35 

for ... 102 195 ^fafafMJi ... 22 26 

... 105 205 yfk^>*flriH ... 69 117 

..v 63 103 *sm W ... 108 214 

f*r+ M M.M f* f* 

77 137 JWTt ^*Wiutf ... 3 2 

18 20 $M<H^*tl*CHC1KtW ... 14 14 

TU... 11 10 ^ tci^lU^ ..: 87 161 

... 34 46 ff 



. 64 104 gq f^M^m ... 81 146 

. 53 82 ^iii^HlfaHi ... 78 139 

fqr ftfaH^g ... 12 12 >" 

. 25 32 ^ - ' - '.' 

. 52 81 ft^r %#t^: ... 70 119 

. 35 48 

. 32 42 ' 

. 31 41 NHilxM^^ f ,., 68 414 

,5 4 ^rrdr^4MMr<d<i ,6 ? 

. -30 38 ^Wfer Sffan ^ ... 23 29 
q|3nra[ q q ,^^ H f^ : umm 93 185 

rT*rt*m%m ... 41 ,58 ^ ' / 



1 S" -\ f 



SI. P. 



SI. P. 



59 92 

79 141 

66 110 

40 56 



67 1*2 

50 76 

38 52 

9 186- 



srrot 



89 165 

85 156 

82 148 

42 60 

103 197 



33' 4* 



46 69 



| nc 



54 4 



20 22 

100 190 

43 62 

55 86 

8 6 

65 108 

>101 193 

92 175 



29 33- 

94 178 
60 94* 



44 44 
83 154 



24; 



86 159 

3 49 

4 3 

24 30 

80 143 

1 I 



7 5 

2 2 

95 n 

93 176 

31 41 

ear HOD 



w 



frf 



w*l 



SI. P. 

91 172 

58 90 

15 15 

76 134 

37 50 

76 134 

78 139 

104 199 



106 207 
49 75 






5 



SI. P. 



57 88 

84 153 

96 181 

21 24 

6 5 

45 68 

77 137 



74 129 




DAYAA SATAKAM iq ; 

not the Daya of the Powerful Lord who holds the great Saarnga 
in His hand? 



Visvaanugrahatnaataram vyatishajatsvargaapavargaam sudhaa 
saddhreecheem ill Venkateswamkavir-bhaktyaq Dayaam astuta i 
Padyaanaam ihayadvidheya bhagavatsankalpakalpadmmaat 
jhanjhaamaartitadhootachootanayatah'Sampaatikoyamkramahn^ 

The poet Venkatesa has thus out of devotion sung the praise 
of Daya, who is the mother (of all) capable of conferring (all) favours, 
who brings (unto us) (bestows ort us) Swfcrga and Apavarga (moksha), 
and who is ever (sweet and life giving) like nectar, (amrita). And 
even like ripe Mango fruits shaken by strong winds during a hurricane, 
this particular order of verses in this Stotra has dropped from 
the Kalpaka tree of the Lord's Sankalpa (will) which is ever sub- 
ordinate and dependant on (or is at the disposal of) that Daya (whose 
praise has been sung by the poet Venkatesa). 

This and the next sloka, which is the very last sloka of the 
whole Stotra, are couched in the Saarcfoola VikreeMa metre. As 
the name itself indicates, the syllables and words leap and Frolic 
even as a leopard does during its sporting moments. This metre 
contains 19 syllables to a paada. It is thus the longest of the 
several metres employed in this Stotra. * 

" ",>,.." ,''<* 

. It, is only in, this sloka that the poet definitely refers to himself 
as the author. In Sloka 104 a reference was made to his titular 
name Vedanta Desika. In sloka 105 the name Venkatesa occurs, 
but it was used ambiguously and could be taken as referring as 
much to Lord Venkatesa as to himself. By the words Venkateswara J 
kavi employed here, the poet refers to 'himself by his proper name, 
and so this is the " mndra sloka/' the sloka bearing the seal of 
the author. , , 

The Stotra was referred to as udaaram ^3^R in the previoi 
sloka. The subject of the stotra, Daya Devi, is referred to Ir 
as Visva-aiwgraha-maataram. She is the mother. -She is a mo 
who . always bestows favours, anugraha-rnaatararn. Nigraha 




DAYAA SATAKAM 

NINTH DECAD. 



Lord's unbounded kindness towards prapannas was very 
well illustrated by the two previous decads, which respectively 
dealt with (a) His essential nature of dispelling sins and their un- 
pleasant consequences (anishta) and (b) His overwhelming love 
towards the prapannas, which is willing to adapt itself to their 
desires with a view to ultimately sublimate those desires into God- 
love. This idea has been well expressed by Desika elsewhere 
also. Vide Dramidopanishad Saram : 



4t With a view to dispel and banish the anishtas of ,jnen and in order 
to see that their desire for worldly pleasures is gradually put down, 
He the Lord of all, who has the entire threefold chetana and ache- 
tana creation under His own sway, yields Himself up to the varie- 
gated desires of His followers/' (Those who are interested in 
pursuing the theory that is being elaborated in this commentary., 
that the theme for each of the ten decads of this stotra is furnished 
by the respective themes of the ten centums of Nammalwafs Tiru- 
voimozhi, as laid down by Desika, will have noticed the use of 
several identical words and phrases in this sloka of Dramidopanishad 
Saram and the 81st sloka of Daya Satakam). 

This ninth decad furnishes the reason why the Lord is so 
fond of His devotees, and fond to the extent of coming down to 
their level. He is shown here to be a nirupadhi Suhrft 



138 DAYAA SATAKAM 

who has not in her composition the fault of punishing others, 
will see to it tbat the evU results that must follow as a result of 
our wrong acts after prapatti are warded off in some manner or 
another. The methods of warding off the evil effects are, by making 
us undergo expiation or prayaschitta for thfc sins that we shall 
unconsciously or unwittingly commit after the perfounance of 
prapatti, orif our nature does not permit us to take to such expiation, 
then Daya Devi sees to it that some punishment is awarded for 
that error or slip from the path of virtue, so that by being punished 
for it, the sin itself disappears. For the prapatti performed, the 
Lord has at the behest of Daya Devi promised to the prapanna 
complete freedom from thn cycle of births and deaths at the end 
of this particular life. No change is effected in that sankalpa 
or resolution of the Lord, -taken with the help of Daya Devi. The 
Lord through Daya Devi sees to it that the- sins committed in 
the post-prapatti period are not allowed to stand in the way of con- 
ferring mukti or release on the prapanna. This is achieved by Daya 
Devi counteracting the errors of commission and omission that 
may set in in, the post-prapatti period. The word " pratividhim " 
shows the counter-action, Elsewhere Desika has elaborated this 
idea and said as, follows referring to the Budciliipoorva-paapa 



or conscious sins Conscious errors of commission and omission 
will not occur, Even if they occur,- by prayaschitta Pr^f, or 
by punishment, thfc Lord sees to it that His original sankalpa 
of mukthi is carried out. The' prior sins are all wiped out by the 
nyaasa or sajanagatL The portion of the prarabdha which has 
.to be grae through .till the end of this lifetime, is suffered, and 
iftereby liquidated. Conscious post-prapatli sins will not occur, 
and if they occur they are destroyed by expiation or punishment! 
The result is there is no balance of karma left at the moment 
offlhe pcapaima's casting off this body of his. This process is 
dealt with 'ia. this sloka which emphasises the absence of the 
danger of once again getting into thecJutchesof the god of death 
&amavasyataam,q^mR). Daya Devi casts asunder that great 
danger a ft d Meonjunqtion with that hitaishmee or benefit-Conferrer, 
Lord -Stimvasa, does away with all the obstacles in the way of 
ednfermg rnoksha iifXHrthfe prapanna. 



tl (^0 

Kshanavilayinaam saastraarthaanqam phalaayanivesite 
Sura Pitirigane nirvesat praagapi pralayam gate i 

Adhigata Vrishakshmaabrinnaathaam akaalavasamvadaam 

pratibhuvam iha vyaachkhyustvaam Kripe ! mrupaplavaam " (78) 

Day a Devil where the Devasand Pitrns who have been appofnced 
to confer fruits for the performance of good deeds prescribed in the 
Saastras (such as daanaas and homaas), fruits which are of very 
short duration, when those gods and pirtnis themselves reach the end 
of their career and disappear, yon who are not subject to any Imi- 
tations of time, you who are unaffected by the troubles that others 
may create, and you who have Lord Srinivasa for your support, 
stand guarantee for the realisation of the phala by those persons 
who have done those good deeds. So the great ones have said. 

Deeds that human: beings perform cam be good deeds or bad 
deeds. It would have been noticed that only bad deeds, which 
are called sins, have very often come up for consideration. Just 
as sins have to receive punishment, good and virtuous deeds have 
got to receive their rewards. The perpetrator of sins will be anxious 
to avoid -having to undergo the punishment due for those sins. 
Similarly those~who have performed good and righteous deeds 
will be anxious to have the reward prescribed for those deeds 
bestowed on them. This sloka deals with the doers of good deeds, 
and assures them that if they are anxious and desirous of obtaining 
all the benefits and rewards that they are entitled to by virtue of 
their sood acts, they need not be afraid of having to lose them 
because the minor gods and the Pitrus; who, propitiated by 
these good deeds, have to give to them those rewards, dis- 
appear before that date. The rewards themselves are imper- 
manent It may also so happen that before the time arrives for 
rewarding those persons who eagerly wait their for their rewards, 
the Devas and Pittas 'may themselves disappear, because the good 
deeds responsible for getting them their high position have come 
to an end, Daya Devi however sees to it that no disappoint- 



140 DAYAA SATAKAM 

ment is caused to those who have by their good acts earned 
those rewards and preferments. It is said in this sloka that she 
stands as a surety and a guarantee to them for the realisation 
of all the benefits and rewards. 

The Vedds, in the Karmakanda portion thereof, have prescribed 
several deeds and actions by which men can propitiate a particular 
devata or a particular forefather (pitru). The Devatas or Devas, such 
as Indra etc., have attained the position of power and importance 
by virtue of their good deeds. Any act done in order to please 
them results in good things to the perso/i doing the acts. One 
who desires to go to Swarga has been ordained to do a particular 
yaga, When there is no rain, Indra or Varuna has been directed 
to be propitiated by suitable mantras and observances, and when 
these observances are gone through, rain comes, and so on. If a 
Deva so propitiated ceases to be a Deva by the time the good deeds 
done to propitiate him begin to earn fruit, what is to happen to those 
deeds? This uncertainty in the persons here down below will 
act as a deterrent to their taking to a good act with the motive 
of obtaining good results. To protect the sanctity and greatness 
of the sastras which have laid down particular deeds, and the re- 
wards to be obtained iherefor by or through the agency of certain 
minor gods, Daya Devi functions as a surety ensuring the reward. 
She is not Habile to any destruction. She is an akaalavasamvada, 
not subject to the operation of time. She is also nir-upaplava, 
obstruction-less. Above all Daya Devi has annexed herself to 
Lord Srinivasa, the Lord of Venkatadri who is abcve all limitations 
of time and space. 



Pratibhoo (srf^nr:) means bail, surety, guarantee. Daya 
Devi is the guarantor, and guarantees certainty of reward, though 
the rewarder may not be there, 

This sloka refers to the short-lived greatness of persons who 
dole out from a position of power, rewards and benefits to others 
smaller than themselves. Even during the short time that a god 
officiates as a god, it is only with the strength given by Daya that 
he gets the capacity to reward others. This topic has been touched 
upon in this sloka particularly to show that just as the sinners need 
not be afraid of receiving punishment if they rely on Daya the 
virtuous men need not be afraid of losing their reward 



DAYAA SATAKAM 141 

t 
ftrar 



Tvadupasadanaat adya svovaa mahaapralayepi vaa 

vitarati nijam paadaambhojam Vrishaachalasekharaha 
Tad-iha Karunel tattadkreedaatarangaparampama- 

tamtamatayaa jushtaayaaste duratyayataam viduhu (79) 
Devi Kanma ! on those who resort to you, and take refuge in 
you, the Lord of Vrishachala is certain to confer the blessing of His 
lotus Feet. It may be today, or it may be tomorrow, or it may 
be only during the Mahapralaya. But the conferment is certain. 
Therefore it is that the learned people have understood you, with 
you variegated sportiveness, that is itself like a succession of waves. 
ar } indeed hard to be overcome or fathomed. 

Having dealt with the way in which Daya operates to punish 
the sinners, and guarantee rewards to good men, Desika harks 
back to the one topic which alone is uppermost in his mind, the 
attainment by all human beings of the Feet of the Lord. Though 
Daya is capable of relieving us from the burden of sins, and of 
seeing to it that we get rewarded for our good deeds, yet her primary 
desire is to see that we attain the Feet of the Lord and get away 
from the realm of Papa and Punya. That the attainment of beati- 
tude at the Feet of the Lord is the pooitive content of saranagati 
is once again emphasised in this sloka. At the same time, the 
difference in the time of attainment, which in turn depends upon 
the intensity of the yearning of the upasaka to attain the Feet 
of the Lord, and the consequent difference in Dayaprasaada, is 
the topic dealt with in this sloka. If the yearning of a person to 
r\*ach the Feet of the Lord is so intense that he adopts saranagati 
for immediate release from samsara, Daya Pevi secures to 
him that desire of his by seeing that the Loid takes him unto 
His feet immediately, forthwith; sf^r, here and now. Svaha 
W; means tomorrow. That is, slightly dehyed, If as in the case 
of most of our Acharyas, the prapatti is performed with a view to 
attain the Feet of the Lord at the end of this bodily existence, 
surely Daya Devi sees to it that the heart's desire of such a person 
is fulfilled, and the moment his connection with this particular 



DAYAA SATAKAM 137 

By the word Prabriti etc., we have to understand Satsangha 
(association with Sudhdhaantasiddhantins) Ardia-anubhava (enjoy- 
ment of the beauty and grace of the Gods in Temples) and similar 
faultless and elevating pleasures that make life itself worth living. 



Anitarajushaam antar-mookpyapaayapariplave 

kritavidanagtiact vichchidyaishaant Kripel Yamavtisyataam t 
Prapadanaphalapratyaadesa prasmgavivarfllatn 

pratividhim ztpaadhatse saardham Vrishaadri-hitahhmtffl* (77) 
Kripa Devi! Even if those who steadfastly look up to Ae Lord 
and the Lord alone, as their upaya and purushartha, (means and 
end), happen to commit any conscious sin, yon who never allow yourself 
to forget the saranagati that they have done, and who have not in 
your make up the fault of punishing, to them, you in conjunction 
with that great Weft-wisher of all mankind in Viishadri, bong about 
a counter-acting element, so that there is no impediment or bar to 
their attaining the fruit of the Saranagati that they have observed. 

Thecleansingprocess was the topic of the previous sloka, As the 
Prapanna continues to live even after performing Saranagati, his 
further life is decided according to the pmarabdha or that part of his 
karmas which has begUft to give effect. Therefore his future acts of 
commission and omilsion are likely to lead him iittosin. It Is here 
pointed out, that because prapatti is made with the determraatioD to 
fallow the Lord's commands, and never to do any act proscribed by 
the Sastras,whMi togteta His orders and ordinances, it is not likely 
that tbe'/?r0/xzmtf will ever be guilty of conscious commissions and 
omissions in the Hktwre of fcm. But by the force of the prarabdha* 
if the prapanna h&^pens to be unwittingly guilty of an act of commis- 
sion or omi^l> ? *%k&w31 be an apaaya or sin, what will happen 
to him? Tfife is the problem which which will present Itself to 
every thinking '-man. 'If ^er doing Prapatti, I go wrong, will I 
lose the betrtfi* <# the prapatti performed by me, is the question 
that Is likdy't*> a^s*iil every prapanna. The answer to that is 
furnished 1 by tMs sloka. The sloka assures us th^t Daya Devi 
who is not likely tc forget the saranagati that we have done, and 



DAYAA SATAKAM 13 

'ishagirisudhaasindhau jantur-Daye \ nfhitas-tvayaa 

bhavabhaya pareetaapachchhittyai bhajannaghamarshanam t 

tushitakalusho mukter-agresarair-abhipooryate. 

svayam upcwatais-svaatmaanandaprabhrityanubandhibhihiu (76 

Day a Devi! That being who is placed by you in that ocean o 
ectar that is in Vrishagiri, gets Ms fear and tapa (heat) engendere 
p samsara, dispelled, and becomes pure and freed from sin. Havin 
iiis got himself cleansed of sin, he is filled, during Ms further sta 
i this world, with all the higher pleasures, like those obtaine 
ora a true realisation of one's own self, pleasures which are reall 
ire-runners and fore-tastes of the mokshananda that is sure to come, 



Aghamarshana 3Twf<*T is a bath enjoined by the Scripture 
ad Dharmasastras for cleansing oneself of very heinous sins an 
rimes. There is a sookta ^3RT or prayer in the Rig Veda, know 
5 the Aghamarshana Sookta, which, if repeated while bathinj 
as got the power of releasing the bather from heinous sins. Th 
Terence in this sloka is to that purifying and expiatory bath. 

Daya is here referred to as placing (PT%rFFTT) her upaasaks 
i that grand and sweet nectar-sea, that is Srinivasa. This is th 
ath she enjoins on her votaries, or rather gets them to go througl 
t is clear that Desika is here thinking of the old saying " Esh; 



I plunge myself into this Brahman, HI 
lunging into a cool and deep lake, during scorching summe 
n the Devunayaka Panchasat (a stotra in praise of the Lord < 
"iruvahindrapuram in South Arcot District) Desika has made th 
eference more plain and pointed: 

m ftfeir 



Lord Devanatha! Having been ruthlessly duped by several kin 
>f mirage in the shape of earthly pleasures, my rnind has just nc 
ittained rest, peace and comfort; for it has entered into (plung* 
ato the depths of) You, who are like a majestic, sacred, and swe 
ake (full of water), even as one scorched gets into a tank). 

It was only a tataaka 3ZFF or tank in Devanayaka Panchasj 
Hfere it is an ocean, Sindhu, an ocean of nectar, Sudha-sindh 



DAYAA SATAKAM 133 

The people of this world prefer aiswarya, wealth, to all other 
things. Aiswarya here must be taken to be a compendious term 
indicating all worldly pleasures. The kaivalya which comes next 
is the stage where the aspirant to spiritual eminence indulges in 
the realisation of the pleasures of the self, bereft of God-association. 
To the true devotee of God, even kaivalya is not a stage worth 
aspiring for. It is as good, or as bad, and certainly as evanescent 
and unsatisfying, as aiswarya itself. The opening words of the 
sloka show that people who are spiritually minded prefer the 
pleasures of wealth and Aatmanubhava even to the exalted positions 
held by Brahma and Rudra. It shows that people are so taken 
in by what this world can offer that they do not even desire the 
other-worldly pleasures like those of Brahma and Rudra. 

Daya Devi understands correctly the desire of the people 
of the 'world to obtain earthly wealth, or in a few and rare cases 
the supreme satisfaction of Aathmanubhava SHc-HM^. Personally 
Daya Devi, who knows the real value to be attached to these, as 
contrasted with the pleasures attainable at the Feet of the Lord; 
is not happy about the craving that people entertain for these 
pleasures. But just like a fond mother, who pretends to satisfy 
the expressed desires of the child, all the while having in her mind 
th idea of converting it later on to her views. Daya appears to 
grant what they want, so that her hold on them may become firm and 
they may learn to look to her for everything they desire to have. The 
illustration about conferring punya and dispelling sin on an indi- 
vidual who does not desire punya or to get rid of his sin, but only 
feels thirsty, shows the way Daya Devi sets about it. Just as a 
person interested in a thirsty man's soul takes him to the sacred 
theerthas like the Ganga, and asks that person to quench his thirst 
with the water of the Ganga, so that he may not only have his thirst 
quenched but also obtain punya, so too Daya Devi eggs on her 
votaries to appeal to her (and thereby to the Lord) to secure their 
hearts' desire with the idea of ultimately making them desire the 
Lord for the Lord's own sake. It is Daya's attempt to convert 
the first three classes of men denoted by Lord Sri Krishna as Aartha 
srpsf : Jignasu f^TT^ and Artharthi sr^frff into persons belonging 
to the last class namely gnani wrftr. 

The word ' veetaatanka,' which literally means having dispelled 
fear, shows how carefully Daya Devi sets about the task of redeem- 
ing lis and taking us to eternal bliss, mokshananda. She has 



DAYAA SATAKAM 

The people of this world prefer aiswarya, wealth, to all c 
things. Aiswarya here must be taken to be a compendious 
indicating all worldly pleasures. The kaivalya which comes 
is the stage where the aspirant to spiritual eminence indulg< 
the realisation of the pleasures of the self, bereft of God-associa 
To the true devotee of God, even kaivalya is not a stage \\ 
aspiring for. It is as good, or as bad, and certainly as evanei 
and unsatisfying, as aiswarya itself. The opening words ol 
sloka show that people who are spiritually minded prefer 
pleasures of wealth and Aatmanubhava even to the exalted posi 
held by Brahma and Rudra. It shows that people are so t 
in by what this world can ofler that they do not even desin 
other-worldly pleasures like those of Brahma and Rudra. 

Daya Devi understands correctly the desire of the p 
of the "world to obtain earthly wealth, or in a few and rare < 
the supreme satisfaction of Aathmanubhava 3nwR^T3T. Perso 
Daya Devi, who knows the real value to be attached to thes 
contrasted with the pleasures attainable at the Feet of the I 
is not happy a.bout the craving that people entertain for i 
pleasures. But just like a fond mother, who pretends to sj 
tbie expressed desires of the child, all the while having in her : 
thQ idea of converting it later on to her views. Daya appea 
grant what they want, so that her hold on them may became firn 
they may learn to look to her for everything they desire to have, 
illustration about conferring punya and dispelling sin on an 
vidual who does not desire punya or to get rid of his sin, but 
feels thirsty, shows the way Daya Devi sets about it. Just 
person interested in a thirsty man's soul takes him to the s; 
theerthas like the Ganga, and asks that person to quench his 
with the water of the Ganga, so that he may not only have his 
quenched but also obtain punya, so too Daya Devi eggs 01 
votaries to appeal to her (and thereby to the Lord) to secure 
hearts' desire with the idea of ultimately making them desii 
Lord for the Lord's own sake. It is Daya's attempt to co 
the first three classes of men denoted by Lord Sri Krishna as A 
srfsf: Jignasu fawRj and Artharthi spqW into persons belo 
to the last class namely gnani frrft". 

The word ' veetaatanka,' which literally means having disj 
fear, shows how carefully Daya Devi sets about the task of re< 
ing us and taking us to eternal bliss, mokshananda. Sh 



DAYAA SATAKAM 123 



II s ?) 

ividha chidachit sattaasthemapravrittiniyaamikaa 

Vrishagirivibhor ichchhaa saa tvam parairaparaahataa \ 
ripanabharabhritkimkurvaanaprabhootagunaantaraa 

vahasi Karune \ vaichakshanyam madeekshanasaahase \\ (71) 
Devi Karuna! you who are but the wish or desire of the Lord 
: Vrishagiri ; who order and direct the states of existence, continuance, 
id activity of the three kinds of chetanas and achetanas; who is 
controlled by others; who willingly bear all the burdens of helpless 
ad wretched beings; who are served (obeyed) by the other lofty 
aalities (of the Lord), Such a you possess great skill in (are an 
lept at) the very bold act of patronising and protecting me by making 
ic the object of your (protective) glances. 

Daya is here defined as the Lord's Ichcha dssire or wish. 
'he Lord's desire to protect that is Daya. It is not an empty 
esire, nor is it a vain desire. This is demonstrated by reference 
;> four factors. 

The first of them is dealt with in a long phrase Tri-vida-chit- 
chit - satta - stbema-pravritti-niyaamikaa. Trivida is threefold. 
ilvida chit or the threefold chetana classification is as Nitya, 
tfukta and Baddha. (The ever celestials like Garuda; the released 
ouls; and the souls in bondage.) Trivida achit refers to the three 
.chetana objects known generally as prakriti, time and suddhasatva. 
?he existence, continuance (persisting in the same state) and activity, 
>f all the above six are Dayaadeena i.e., they are all ordered 
ind ordained by her. 

The second is parairaparaahata uncontrollable, unobstructed 
>y any one and anything else. Daya's sway is supreme. Nothing 
ind nobody can stand in the way of the Lord's desire, whose name 
s Daya. It is the Ichcha, desire, of a Vibhu, a mighty and eminent 
sovereign and no one dare cross it. 

Daya is next stated to be Kripana-bhara-bhrit, the bearer 

This has been dealt 



DAYAA SATAKAM 121 

eyes here we find Daya Devi doing this daring act, namely, welcoming 
the sinner with avidity, just because that sinner has been clever 
enough to take to Bharanyaasa. The followers of other systems, 
which are also claimed to have been derived from the same Srutis, 
exclaim, "what foolishness this! "and "to what Khila fe^r or 
vacuity of intellect is this to be attributed? " 

Vismerabhuvanam fe^^nf a world gaping with shock and 
surprise. Vismaya fcpFHT may also refer to admiration, in which 
sase the words will mean, to a world admiring Daya or Devi's 
cleverness. In view of the othsr words in the Sloka like 
KLhilam, this latter meaning cannot be appropriate for this word as 
referring to the world. The poet is going to refer to the real 
admiration that the Lord entertains for this bold act of Daya. 
That is the other sentiment enshrined in the sloka. 

Simhakshmaabhrit f^f^rnrq; is Simhaachala one of the 
Puranic names of Tirumala. The Lord residing there is referred 
to here as a Kritamukha f^njST which means a very learned 
ind clever person. The term frgrnT Vidwan in a way will bring 
3ut the meaning of this word Kritamukha. The act of Daya related 
ibove in coming forward and meeting the prapannas at the cross- 
roads is looked upon by this very learned and clever Person with 
admiration. Only a Vidwan can adequately appreciate a Vidwan' s 
work. As already pointed out there is a difference between the 
Vismaya of the world, and the Chamatkaara which is the reaction 
of the Lord to Daya's act. Here it is unalloyed admiration. What 
the Lord has not been able to achieve by Himself without the help 
3f Daya, Daya has achieved before His very eyes; and His heart 
feels happy and glad at this welcome which Daya extends to Pra- 
pannas. 

Prasthaana ^q"Fr means setting forth, starting; Pratipras- 
:haana srfcTSRsrFT ^ as ^ een un( ierstood as counterstarting or 
jetting forth, meaning, going out for the purpose of welcoming 
those who come in. 

This is the last sloka of this decad in which Daya Devi's supre- 
macy in action has been very well described. Her daringness and 
audacity, in protecting those who have taken refuge in her, as dealt 
with in this decad are referred by Desika himself in the opening 
sloka of the next decad as a Saahasa, ^Tf[*r a very rash and daring 



DAYAA SATAKAM 109 



a Devi to mie if some small evil happens to you c^ 
* f% wl era *W. That was the extent to which Rama 
i Sugreeva. Sabari, the hunter-woman, whose hospitality 
ama is a household word, is referred to nsxt. Sabari means 
>man of tha hunter class. This lady had no other name by 
h, she was known. So Kaapi Sabari may be taken to indicate 
nameless hunter woman. 4 Kaapi ' has however been used 
to show that a peerless lady bearing the name Sabari is indi- 
.. Rama was her guest, and gladly and willingly ate of what 
md carefully put by as sweet and delicious in anticipation 
is arrival. 

Rama was the acme of modesty and one will not be surprised 
s moving intimately and freely with Guha, Sugreeva, or Sabari. 
he Lord Krishna^ si God from birth, born as a God and not 
man, having to His credit several deeds from boyhood to 
lood which arc distinctly superhuman what about Him? 
, Devi renders Him too accessible to one and all in the lower 
i of society. Kuchela (meaning dirty-and-tom-cloth-man) 
picture and model of poverty; Kubja of ugliness; Gopis, of 
tered ignorance; and maalakaara a vendor of fragrant garlands 
flowers, not one among which would he have for his 
use. And with all of them, Sri Krishna mixed freely aad on 
. terms. The reception He gave Kuchela should ever serve 
ideal for small minded rich men to follow, persons who will 
Leign even to recognise in a poorer man an old-time friend 
lassraate. Kubja means bent woman, a hunch-back. A 
with this defect in her body was preparing sandal paste for 
sa's use. While she was taking some sandal one day to Kamsa, 
ret Balarama and Krishna in the streets of Muttra. At once 
illingly offered the sandal to those lovely youngsters. Krishna 
diately rewarded her by relieving her of her hunch back and 
;rting her into a young and handsome damsel. The first 
'that lady then was to catch hold of his uttariya (upper garment) 
drag Him towards herself. Thereby Krishna earned 
>f his 108 names (Ashtottara-sata-narnaas) namely * Kubjaa- 
Saambaradharaha * 3Fsn?2WRC v JT:. There is a Kubja (f *si) 
ie Ramayana, whose name stinks; as much as that of 
hagavata counterpart exhudes fragrance. So to demonstrate 
t is not the evil and inimical kubja, but the devoted and loving 
fy it is said here 4 Kubja-saa,' that Kubja. 



DAYAA SATAKAM 97 

x>k up to her for help and succour, to the great Acharyas who are 
ieloved of the Lord, so beloved as to make Him refer to them in 
tie Bhagavat Geeta as His Atma, (gnanee-tu-atmaiva-me-matam) 
nd as very dear to Him (Sa-cha-mama-priyaha). The gnani of 
tie Geeta is here referred to as Budaha (f-*:). Their greatness 
/as indicated in the previous sloka by the v words Vrishagiri-jushah- 
tira-chara-silpinaiva-parikalpita-chitra-dhiyaha. As they are reposi- 
3ries of Daya's protective qualities, ordinary men and women 
ave to rely on them for redemption. This is known as the Acharya- 
ishta form of Saranagati. 

(7) Madhure! Sweet! By nature Daya Devi is sweet and 
ttractive, even as a mother is to the baby. 

(8) Vrishagiri-sarvabhauma-dayite ! Beloved of the Emperor 
f Vrishagiri! Daya is one of the Consorts of Lord Srinivasa. 
; has been said before that the other Consorts like Sri, Bhoo and 
[eela Devis are dear to. the Lord because the Lord sees Daya 
jflected in them. (Sloka 36). 

(9) Bhavuka-nidhe ! Storehouse of all mangalam (auspicious- 
sss)! The very first description of Daya in this Sloka was as an 
anchana-nidhi (treasure-house for the helpless). That nidhi or 
easure is here pointed out to be a bhavuka-nidhi, a treasure of 
uspiciousness. 

After having thus called Daya in nine different ways, Sri Desika 
takes known to her his prayer in the words " mayi-te-mahateem- 
b.avamoola-haraam-lahareem-nidhehi,"-pray divert towards me 
>ur mighty floods capable of uprooting this great tree of Samsara, 
hat is to say, please destroy my connection with Samsara and 
2$tow on me the beatitude of the Highest Bliss. The nature and 
te content of 'that Bliss have already been described in detail in 
te fifth decad. 

Thus the sixth decad of this Stotra concludes with the perfor- 
ance of prapatti by Desika even as the sixth Centurium of Verse 
, Nammalwar's Tiruvoimozhi ends with the Alwar's anushtaana 
practice) of prapatti. The effect of this anushtana or practice of 
*apatti is seen in the following decads. The twofold aspect of 
.ehelp that Daya renders to prapannas, v/z., Anishta-nivritti and 
hta-praapti (Removal of undesircd fruits and realisation of desired 
liits respectively) is described in detail in the succeeding decads.