Friday, August 06, 2010

Heads of Seven Orders - mantrA 102

srigurubhyO namahA

The 102nd mantrA of the pAyiram section is the closing verse in the sub section dealing with the guru lineage of the author. Here, the sage lists the names of the seven masters who head the seven orders that come from the kailAsa paramparA.

கலந்தருள் காலாங்கர் தம்பால்அ கோரர்
நலந்தரு மாளிகைத் தேவர்நா தாந்தர்
புலங்கொள் பரமானந் தர்போக தேவர்
நிலந்திகழ் மூவர் நிராமயத் தோரே. 2.8.102.

Heads Of Seven Orders
Kalanga immanent-living, Agora his very next,
Maligai Deva the goodly and the holy Nadhanta,
Paramananta, who the senses conquered and Bhogadeva,
And Mula here breathing--of the Eternal are they all. 2.8.102.

Com - Kalanga immanent-living, Agora his very next, The siddha kALAngar and the siddha agOrar who are ever immersed in the state of ecstasy of sivAnandA.Maligain Deva the goodly and the holy Nadhanta, The siddha thirumAligai dEvar, who is ever striving to do good, and the siddha nAdAntar.Paramananta, who the senses conquered and Bhogadeva, The siddar paramAnandar and the siddar bhOgadEvar , who having won over the indriyAs (senses) remain as pure intelligence. And Mula here breathing -- of the Eternal are they all. And thirumUlar (the author), who is currently living and present in the world. All these seven masters are the greatest siddhAs. Perfected beings who have conquered the disease of birth and death and are thus eternal.

* In this mantra the sage names the seven masters who belong to the seven orders mentioned in the previous mantra. All these seven masters are siddhAs of great stature. They are perfected beings.

The sage uses the word ‘ nirAmayatthOrE’ in the tamil original. The word ‘nirAmayam’ means faultless. The ‘fault’ / ‘taint’ here refers to the disease of birth (and death). The cycle of birth and death is a result of avidyA (ignorance/misapprehension). Due to this, the jIvA feels different to siva and perceives duality or multiplicity. This results in actions which produce subsequent fruits in the form of re births. As long as this taint of avidyA continues to exist, the jIvA is not free from the clutches of birth and death.

So, when the sage speaks of the above named seven masters as eternal beings, it is to confirm that these masters have reached the plane of supreme enlightenment. They are established in the Self and are ever immersed in sivAnandA. Their compassion for the people and their desire for the well being and spiritual upliftment of the masses is the reason for the spread and continuity of their lineages.

The seven above named masters and their respective orders are all established in the siddha tradition. Being beyond birth and death, these eternal masters continue to guide the people through the strength of their tapas and spiritual merit.

The words 'Mula here breathing' allude to the fact that some of these above named seven masters are denizens of other worlds and planes of existence. The sage thirumUlar too as we have seen elsewhere (and will see more of in the following mantrAs) was originally a resident of kailAsA, the abode of siva. Due to the instructions of his guru nandi and in order that the sentient people of this world of ours may benefit from the esoteric teachings, the sage travelled down to earth and settled in the southern Indian Tamil land. Thus the words 'here breathing' refer to the fact that the sage lived for some time among us in the world we know as earth, in a physical (elemental) body that breathed like the rest of us. The state of being achieved by the siddhas make the act of breathing more or less redundant as they have established kumbhakA or breath suspension. They are no longer subject to birth, decay and death like the rest of us.