Sunday, October 14, 2012

Lamp remained, flame died - mantrA 164

srigurubhyO namahA |
In the 164th mantrA the sage observes that we have decided to ignore common sense in order to delude ourselves with ideas of 'possession' and 'ownership' when our time here is but fleeting and momentary.

இடிஞ்சில் இருக்க விளக்கொகொண்டான்
முடிஞ்ச தறியார் முழங்குவர் மூடர்
விடிஞ்சுஇரு ளாவது அறியா உலகம்
படிஞ்சு கிடந்து பதைக்கின்ற வாறே. I.2.22.164
The lamp remains but the flame is out,
Loud the fools lament but the truth ignore;
Night follows day--this they fail to grasp,
And thus immersed fall and moan,
Ever sobbing more and more. I.2.22.164

Com - The lamp remains but the flame is out, while the lamp like body remained, the Lord of death has snatched away with his noose the flame like life. Loud the fools lament but the truth ignore; and the fools lacking in wisdom fail to recognise the truth about the mortality of the body, and instead lament for the body and are led astray. Night follows day--this they fail to grasp, they fail to grasp the truth that the day (life) and the night (death) occur repeatedly one after the other, again and again. And thus immersed affected by this delusion they imagine that this body is real fall and moan, Ever sobbing more and more. And considering it to be permanent, they go through the misery of the cycle of birth and death forever.

*Common sense should be enough knowledge for one to recognise the temporal nature of the body. We choose to ignore this basic and most startling fact and instead willingly engage ourselves with the false notion of our permanence on a daily basis. This delusion keeps us performing actions that eventually become seeds for future births and thus trap us more and more in the quick sand like samsArA or the transmigratory cycle. Like night follows day invariably, death follows birth. 

thirucchitrambalam |


Anonymous said...

your english translation is so good, at times, your translation looks better than the original tamil verse.

only a person who could have grasped the poem in its entirety can do this job and you are great in it.


Major Randhawa

mooligai sidhan said...

srigurubhyO namahA |
@ Major Randhawa
You are simply too indulgent! Thank you for the kind words.

Though I know only too well that I could never even in my wildest dreams compare myself to the siddar thirumUlar. Often I lament the limited scope of English as a language (not to mention my miniscule intellect)when it comes to metaphysical writing. The original thirumandiram in Tamil is at once poetic and full of true statements and extremely astute observations on human nature and psychology. I could never bring out the essence of it fully to do the justice it deserves.