SrI ANDAL samEta SrI rangamannAr tiruvaDigaLE SaraNam

SrI ANDAL arulic ceyda nAcciyAr tirumozhi

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Sri Andal


nAcciyAr tirumozhi IV-kUDal izhaittal


A. Translation from SrImAn SaDagOpan's tamizh treatise:

godai and her friends who had just struggled and fought with kaNNan, finally got back their garments, and kaNNan disappeared after this. As soon as He was gone, they start worrying about how to be reunited with Him. They decide to do "kUDal izhaittal". It is a method where a circle is drawn and then inside that circle, several arbitrary number of small circles are randomly drawn. The small circles are then paired together (two at a time). In the end, if all small circles are paired, then it means the person who drew them will have her/his wish fulfilled and be united with her/his lover; if a small circle is left alone, this is an indication of bad omen and the wish to be united with the lover will fail. godai uses this method to see if she will be reunited with her kaNNan.

In the third tirumozhi "teLLiyAr palar", consisting of 10 pASurams, ANDAL indulges in the kUDal izhaittal hoping to get a good omen by getting all small circles paired inside the big circle. Praying for a successful outcome in this, she does mangaLASAsanam to SrI sundararAjap perumAL of tirumAlirumSOlai, vEnkatAcalapati of tiruppati, sourirAjap perumAL of tirukkaNNapuram, and kalyANa nArAyaNan housed in dvArakai temple.

B. Some additional thoughts:

SrI periyavAccAn piLLai makes the following comments on godai's resorting to kUDal to reach kaNNan. She falls at the feet of the "kUDal" method which is acetanam, and asks for the desired result of pairing of the circles. Why is she doing these kinds of things, which are inconsistent with the actions of one for whom He is the only means? SrI PVP interprets this as the indication of ANDAL's extreme distress in not attaining Him. Recall that in the first tirumozhi she was pleading to kAman, a demi-god, for blessing to be associated with kaNNan. A similar explanation was given there as well. SrI PVP also remarks that He who has been acting like a vr*tta hInan (lacking discipline and morals), is now being sought by ANDAL who is a vr*ttavati (full of dharma and morals) through rigorous discipline and conduct (vr*tta).

SrI P.B. aNNa~ngarAcArya svAmi points out that kUDal is also referred to by tirumazhisai AzhvAr in nAnmugan tiruvandAdi - "azahippan tiruvEnkaTattAnaik kANa izhaippan tirukkUDal kUDa". Thus this was probably one of the accepted ways of expressing the intense desire in bhagavat samSlesham in AzhvAr's times.

pASuram 4.1 (fourth tirumozhi - pAsuram 1 teLLiyAr palar)

A. Translation from SrImAn SaDagOpan's tamizh treatise:

godai does mangaLASAsanam to tirumAl irum SOlai sundararAjap perumAL thus:

teLLiyAr palar kai tozhum dEvanAr
vaLLal mAlirum SOlai maNALanAr
paLLi koLLum iDattu aDi kottiDak
koLLumAgil nI kUDiDu kUDale

"Oh, kUDalE (the process of drawing small circles within a circle and pairing them off to see if any small circle is left out without a pair or not)! The Lord, who is worshiped by nitya sUri-s with pure minds is living in tirumAl irum SOlai. If I will be blessed with the bhAgyam of doing pAda sevA for my maNALan as He lays down for His Divine sleep, please make sure all the circles are paired for me!

B. Some additional thoughts:
godai's choice of words is exemplary in this pASuram.

teLLiyAr denotes those with extremely pure minds; they are the nityasUri-s who serve Him in SrI vaikuNTham without having to be separated from Him and without having to do 'kUDal" like her, who is suffering from separation from Him.

vaLLal means donor; feeling sorry for the nitya-samsAri-s in the bhUlokam, He came to tirumAl irum SOlai and gave Himself fully to be enjoyed by bhaktas, in spite of getting the nitya-sEvai of the nitya-suri-s in SrI vaikuNTham; hence He is vaLLal.

SrI aNNangarAcAriyAr says that godai's use of words "kUDiDu kUDale" implies that she should be blessed to do attANic cevakam in perumAL sannidhi.

SrI PVP interprets godai's choice of the word "mANALan" thus: don't think of me (periyAzhwAr's daughter) like the gopis you went after in yamunA tIram in the dark and during night times; you have to marry me in a regular fashion and become my husband (maNALan).

godai is not asking for just the bhAgyam to do kaimkaryam to Him along with other bhakta-s; she is asking for the bhAgyam to do ekAnta kaimkaryam to Him in the privacy of His chambers; she wants to be His ultimate servant.

pASuram 4.2 (fourth tirumozhi - pAsuram 2 kATTil vEnkaTam)

A. Translation from SrImAn SaDagOpan's tamizh treatise:

In the next pASuram, ANDAL prays to 1) vEnkaTa nAthan of tiruvEnkaTa giri (tiruppati) which is praised as "tozhuvAr vinaic-cuDarai nanduvikkum vEnkaTam" by poigai AzhvAr and 2) SrI SourirAjap perumAL, who is referred to as "kanni nan mAmadiL puDai SUzh kaNapurattu en kaNmaNiyE" by SrI kulaSekara AzhvAr:

kATTil vEnkaTam kaNNapura nagar
vAttam inRi magizhndu uRai vAmanan
OttarA vandu en kai paRRit tannODum
kUTTumAgil nI kUDiDu kUDale

Oh, kUDal! If it is true that my Lord, who came as vAmanan and is living without any blemishes in the forest area of tiruvEnkatam and the civilized city area of kaNNapuram, will come running to me and hold my hand to marry me, please make sure that you give me a good omen.

B. Some additional thoughts:

The reference to kADu and nagar in the same line suggests that bhagavAn adopts every possible means to be accessible to us - He is in the forests and he is in the cities.

vATTam inRi magizhndu uRai vAmanan - bhagavAn took His arcA forms in divya kshetra-s such as tiruvEnkaTam and tirukkaNNapuram without any hesitation and resides happily amongst us instead of enjoying His SrIvikunTha vAsam amongst nitya-sUri-s, just for our benefit.

SrI PVP also gives another significance to ANDAL's reference to vAmanan. In this incarnation, He came to this world to beg for three feet of land (maN in tamizh), now she wants Him to come to get this girl (peN in tamizh). SrI PVP is so impressed with the choice of words "vAmanan OttarA vandu" that he says "oraDi maNNukku padaRum avan ivaLaip peRumpOdaikku ARi irAnirE; Asurap prakr*ti Ana maHAbali munnE kazhanju maNNukkup padaRi nadakkum avan, ivaL oru talaiyAnAl ARi irAniRe".

kAttil vEnkatam: His living in tiruvenkaTam is likened to His being with r*shi-s in danDakAraNyam in rAmAvatAram, or in br*ndAvanam in kr*shNAvataram. kaNNapura nagar: His being in tirukkaNNauram is likened to His being in ayoddhi in rAma incarnation, or in tiru AyppADi in kr*shNa incarnation.

SrI PBA comments that it is as if ANDAL feels that bhagavAn has come down seeking her, but is waiting in divya-kshetra-s like tiruppati and tirukkaNNapuram because He is not sure whether she will accept Him; so she is praying He should understand her mind and come running to her as fast as He can and embrace her and merge her with Him. OTTarA is interpreted as faster than the wind ("kARRil munnam kaDugi ODi varak kaDavaniRE").

en kaip paRRit tannOdu kUTTumAgil - The significance is that bhagavAn is the only one who can make the union with Him happen; we can only keep wishing for His tiru-uLLam, but it is He who is the upAya.

pASuram 4.3 (fourth tirumozhi - pAsuram 3 poo-magan )
A. Translation from SrImAn SaDagOpan's tamizh treatise:

In pASurams 3 to 8, godai extols kaNNan's bAlakrIdai-s and prays to kUDal to give her a good omen if kaNNan will come to take her.

poo-magan pugazh vAnavar pORRudaRku
Am magan aNi vAL nudal dEvaki
mAmagan migu SIr vasudEvar tam
kOmagan varil kUDiDu kUDalE

If kaNNapirAn (who is praised by brahma and nityasUri-s), who was born to dEvaki, who had a beautiful and bright forehead, and to vasudEvar, who was an embodiment of all good virtues, is going to come and get me, show me a good omen, oh kUDal!

B. Some additional thoughts:

SrI PVP points out that He is being praised by deva-s such as brahmA and the nitya-sUris on the one hand, and by the ordinary people in bhUlokam on the other. He compares this to a boatman rowing his boat in the middle of the river, and being called for help by the people on both banks of the river. He gives reference to the following from taittirIya samhitA - "nAvEva yAntamubHayE havantE" (

vasudevar tam kO-magan: He is not an ordinary son for vasudEvar; He was so great that He could assure His father not to be scared of kamsan hurting Him, and that instead he should have peace of mind.

"varil" is explained by SrI PVP as referring to the majestic walk of kaNNan reflecting His lineage from dEvaki and vasudEvar. SrI PBA comments that the reference to His being born to devaki and vasudEvar here is to emphasize that bhagavAn takes His incarnations among men just to relieve the bhu-bhAram; godai desires that He would come to relieve her bhAram also.

pASuram 4.4 (fourth tirumozhi - pAsuram 4 AiccimArgaLum)
A. Translation from SrImAn SaDagOpan's tamizh treatise:

Next, godai remembers kaNNan's nartanam on the venomous hoods of the serpent kALIyan:

AiccimArgaLum Ayarum anjiDap
pUtta nIL kaDambu ERip pugap pAindu
vAitta kALiyan mEl naDam ADiya
kUttanAr varil kUDiDu kUDalE

Once upon a time, even though all the AyarpADi people were scared, kaNNan jumped onto to the hoods of kALiyan from the kaDambA tree branches and danced as if He was practicing His dance. If that kaNNan is going to bless me by merging me with Him. show me a good omen!

B. Some additional thoughts from SrI PVP's vyAkhyAnam:

pUtta nIL kaDambu: the kaDamba tree had been charred by the venomous breath of kALiyan, but started flowering the moment kaNNan's feet touched it. Given that the touch of His feet could relieve ahalyA of her curse and convert her from her stone form to her real form, it is no surprise that the contact with His feet could restore the dead kaDamba tree.

vAitta kALiyan: kALiyan is blessed because he got the bhAgyam of having kaNNan's feet touch his head. godA wishes that she should also be blessed with His touch. kUttanAr varil: godai wishes that kaNNan should come to her straight after His dance on kAlIyan's hoods, with the associated exhaustion, and embrace her (so that she has a chance to comfort Him?)

pASuram 4.5 (fourth tirumozhi - pAsuram 5 mADa mALigai)

A. Translation from SrImAn SaDagOpan's tamizh treatise:
In this pASuram, ANDAL recalls how her kaNNapirAn walked in the streets of vaDamathurai, kamsan's capital city, adorned with lofty palaces, and how He killed the mad elephant, kuvalayApIDam, by kicking him with His legs and plucking his tusks. She prays to kUDal to give a good omen if it is true that kaNNan will come to her to take her.

mADa mALigai Suzh mathuraip pati
nADi nam teruvin naDuvE vandiTTu
ODai mA mada yAnai udaittavan
kUDumAgil nI kUDiDu kUDalE

B. Some additional thoughts from SrI PVP's vyAkhyAnam:

SrI PVP paints a beautiful scene here: godai imagines herself having her house in vaDamathurai. kaNNan is invited by kamsan to come to see the vil vizhA (bow festival organized by kamsan). godai imagines that kaNNan is coming just to see her. While it might have been enough to just say "mathuraip pati nam teruvin naDuvE vandiTTu", she adds "nADi". She fantasizes that kaNNan should not directly enter her house; He needs to ask everyone "where is nAcciyAr's palace, where is godai's house" and then find her . She remembers kaNNan blessing the mAlAkArar by wearing the garland presented to Him. The mAlAkArar's house was not in a main street but on a small side lane, and He had to look for the mAlAkArar's house and find it. She herself is a mAlAkArar's daughter (referring to periyAzhvAr who did flower kaimkaryam ("SenbagappU cUTTa vArAi", "malligaippU cUTTa vArAi"," pAdirippU cUTTa vArAi" - pUccUTTal). By this reasoning, she wants Him to seek her house also and come to her.

pASuram 4.6 (fourth tirumozhi - pAsuram 6 aRRavan marudam)

A. Translation from SrImAn SaDagOpan's tamizh treatise:

In this pASuram, ANDAL recalls the leelA of kaNNan when He was a young baby ("taLLit taLar naDai ittu iLam piLLaiyAi") and pulled the mortar with Him and went through two maruDam trees and felled them. Later when He grew up to be a young boy, he killed kamsan - tarikkilAnAgit tAn tIngu ninainda, karuttaip pizhaippittu kanjan vayiRRil neruppenna ninRa neDumAl, as godai refers to the incident in tiruppAvai. She prays to kUDal to give her a good omen if that kaNNan will come and get her.

aRRavan marudam muRiya naDai
kaRRavan ka~njanai va~njanaiyil
ceRRavan tigazhum maduraippaTik
koRRavan varil kUDiDu kUDalE
B. Some additional thoughts:

aRRavan: The interpretation given here is that ANDAL considers it unquestionable that He is for her and no one else - ERkkanavE enakku enRu aRRut tIrndavanAI); ERkkanavE "ANDALukkAnavan ivan" ennum paDi aRRut tIrndavan. This is SrI PVP's interpretation, and also stressed by SrI PBA. SrI PBA gives a possible alternate reading of the pASuram - aRRa val marudam muRiya - One who made sure that the maruda trees which had taken shape only for the purpose of killing Him were destroyed; but he adds that this is not interesting and is not supported by ancestors' vyAkhyAna. We can learn from this kind of respect to ancestors and pUrvAcArya-s which a great AcArya like SrI PBA demonstrates.

Another interpretation given for aRRavan is by SrI T.S. rAjagopAlan, who gives the meaning that bhagavAn has dedicated Himself for His devotees - "un aDiyArkku en Seyvan enRE irutti nI".

naDai kaRRavan: SrI PVP refers us to "yamaLArjunayOr madhyE jagAma kamalEkshaNa: (vishNu purANam), which refers to this incident. SrI T.S. rAjagopAlan gives refernce to tirumangai AzhvAr - "iNai marudiRRu vIzha naDai kaRRa teRRal". It is at such a young age of Lord kr*shNa that it appears He is just learning to walk as He is dragging the mortar through the gap between the trees.

koRRavan: SrI PVP adds that even though kr*shNa made ugraSenA the king of mathurA, godai wants to think of kaNNan alone as the king of mathura. SrI rAjagopAna quotes ANDAL's reference to "maturaiyAr mannan" later in nAcciAr tirumozhi, in vAranamAyiram.

pASuram 4.7 (fourth tirumozhi - pAsuram 7 anRu innAdana)

A. Translation from SrImAn SaDagOpan's tamizh treatise:

In the seventh pASuram, godai continues to praise the valorous deeds of kaNNan: He destroyed SiSupAlan, who had committed untold atrocities in his life. He felled the twin marudam trees that were in His way. He conquered the seven bullocks that stood in the way of marrying nappinai, and also baKASuran who came in the form of a crane to devour young kr*shNa. He destroyed the all-powerful kamsan in front of everyone. godai appeals to kUDal to give a good omen if it be true that kaNNan will be united with her.

anRu innAdana sei SiSUpAlanum
ninRa nIL marudum erudum puLLum
venRi vEl viRal kanjanum vIzha mun
konRavan varil kUDiDu kUDalE
B. Some additional thoughts:

anRu innAdana sei SiSUpAlanum: The reference here is that SiSupAlan did everything that was unpleasant to rukmiNi when her marriage was being contemplated. His acts, words, and deeds were so distasteful that they have been described as "pala nAzham Sollip pazhitta SiSupAlan", "kEtpAr Sevi SuDu kIzhmai vaSavugaLE vaiyum, SEtpAl pazham pagaivan SiSupAlan", etc. (SrI PBA's comments).

ANDAL continues to describe the leelA-s of kr*shNa in the next two pASurams; however, in the current pASUram she names some of the worst enemies whom He had overcome. In the next PASurams, she describes some of His qualities of dayA to His devotees.

pASuram 4.8 (fourth tirumozhi - pAsuram 8 Aval anbu uDaiyAr)
A. Translation from SrImAn SaDagOpan's tamizh treatise:

In this pASuram ANDAL recalls Lord kr*shNa's towards His devotees. kaNNan resides in the hearts of people who long to reach Him and who love Him intensely, and He does not belong anywhere else. He is the Lord of dvAraka, which is surrounded by fragrant gardens. He is the perumAn who appeared in Ayarkulam with great delight and played with the cows and calves. She prays to kUDal to give her a good omen if that kaNNan will come and get her.

Aval anbu uDaiyAr tam manattu anRi
mEvalan virai SUzh tuvarApatik
kAvalan kanRu mEyttu viLaiyADum
kOvalan varil kUDiDu kUDalE
B. Some additional thoughts:

Aval : SrI PVP elaborates on this Aval and gives ANDAL's activities as examples - people who know that they have bhagavAn's kaTAksham still undertaking activities to please Him, such as doing nOnbu, worshiping kAman, drawing ciRRil, bathing very early in the morning, doing kuDal etc.

anbu: In elaborating on this, SrI PVP gives the examples of periAzhvAr singing "pallANDu", and also praying to the pa~ncAyudha's etc. not to lose their guard (even though they never sleep) and keep their eyes open to take care of bhagavAn ("uRagal, uRagal, uRagal" - periyAzhvAr tirumozhi 5-2-9). kaNNan will reside in only in the hearts of people like her kuDi (lineage).

virai SUzh tuvarApati: SrI PVP reminds us that kr*shNa brought the exquisite, out-of-the-world, wonderful-smelling pArijAtam from dEvalokam for satyabhAmA, thereby enhancing the smell that dvArakA already had. "maTTERu kaRpakattai mAdarkkAi vaNDu varai naTTAn" - periya tirumozhi (6-8-7).

kanRu mEittu viLaiyADum:

balarAman and kaNNan, who are the creators and sustainers of the whole world, have become cowherds - because of their sauSIlyam "sarvasya jagata: pAlau vatsapAlO babhUvatu: " (SrI PVP). kAvalan - kOvalan: SrI PBA points out that kAvalan refers to His paratvam and kOvalan refers to His soulabhyam.

pASuram 4.9 (fourth tirumozhi - pAsuram 9 koNDa kOlam)

A. Translation from SrImAn SaDagOpan's tamizh treatise:

In this pASuram, ANDAL recalls the vAmanAvatAra incident.
BhagavAn came as vAmana in the form of a brahmacAri wearing the sacred thread, deerskin, pavitram and tanDu (stick), to the great yAga bhUmi of mahAbali. He got 3 feet of land as a charity from mahAbali, and measured with His one foot the higher worlds, and with another the lands below. ANDAL appeals to kUDal to give a good omen to her signifying that this trivikraman will be united with her.

koNDa kOlam kuRaL uruvAic cenRu
paNDu mAvali tan peru vELviyil
aNDamum nilanum aDi onRinAl
koNDavan varil kUDiDu kUDalE

B. Some additional thoughts:

aDi onRinAl: SrI PVP translates this to mean "ovvOr aDiyAlE" - in other words, one foot for upper worlds and one for lower worlds. SrI PBA explicitly says that "aDi onRinAl" should be taken to mean "aDi ov-vonRinAl".

SrI PVP also has the anubhavam that He is more beautiful when He appears as vAmana than when He is in SrIvaikuNTham. In fact, may be this is how godai felt, and this is why she is singing about vAmana here.

In vAmana incarnation bhagavAn asked for, and got three feet of land. This is referred to in "trINi padA vicakramE" - yajurvEda 2-4-51 (He pervaded all the worlds with 3 measures of His feet) and periyAzhvAr's prabandham - "mUnRadi nimirttu" (periyAzhvAr tirumozhi 4-7-10). However, ANDAL is referring to only two, not three measures - aNDAmum nilanum. This raises the interesting question as to why ANDAL talks of only two dimensions.

SrI PVP explains this by pointing us to SrI jIyar's words recalling SrI BhaTTar's aruLicceyal on this question. SrI BhaTTar quotes the yajurveda (2.8.16) in this context:

"paro mAtryA tanuvA vr*dhAna |
na tE mahitvamanvaSnuvanti |
ubhE tE vidma rajasI pr*thivyA: |
vishNo dEva tvam paramsya vitsE |"

(Oh great vishNu! You took a big form; but, nobody was able to understand your greatness; we all know the two feet with which you measured the upper worlds and the lower worlds including the earth; but the third dimension of your great Self, You alone know its limits". The reference here is that bhagavAn's greatness (his paratvam, sauSIlyam, soulabhyam, vAtsalyam, etc.) - His third dimension - cannot be understood by anyone other than Himself. So it looks like ANDAL stops with describing the two dimensions that we can all comprehend.

peru-vELvi - The yAga by mahAbali could by itself deserve to be considered great, but what made it truly great was that bhagavAn blessed it by His personal appearance. This is what made it "peru" vELvi.

koNDavan - The anubhavam here is that we are all His belongings, and He was not going to let anyone own His belongings, and will get them back by hook or crook. In this case He came as a dwarf brAhmaNa and "got" it all back from bali.

pASuram 4.10 (fourth tirumozhi - pAsuram 10 pazhagu nAn maRaiyin)
A. Translation from SrImAn SaDagOpan's tamizh treatise:

He is the inner meaning of the four ancient vedA-s. With great compassion, He protected the great gajEndra AzhvAn when he was in deep trouble. He attracts everyone with His exquisite beauty, and always resides in the hearts of the beautiful gOpi-s who are His great devotees. ANDAL prays to kUDal to make the circles pair up for her if it will become true that this kaNNapirAn will come to her.

pazhagu nAn maRaiyin poruLAi madam
ozhugu vAraNam uyya aLitta em
azhaganAr aNi Aicciyar SindaiyuL
kuzhaganAr varil kUDiDu kUDalE

B. Some additional thoughts:

em azhaganAr - His beauty attracts the gopi-s because of their intense devotion that they declare "kongai mEl kunkumattin kuzhambazhiyap pugundu oru nAL tangumEl en Avi tangum" (nAcciyAr tirumozhi 8.7).

aNi Aycciyar SindaiyLkuzhaganAr: SrI PVP's anubhavam on these words is really eloquent: The love the gopi-s have for kr*shNa is so intense (see em azhaganAr above) that when He does not come as soon as they think of Him, they feel very sad. They decide that when kaNNan ultimately comes to them one day, they will teach Him a lesson and refuse to even show their face to Him. But all this determination goes to the wind when kaNNan decides to ultimately reveal Himself to them. This is His attribute of "SindaiyuL kuzhaganAr".

pASuram 4.11 (fourth tirumozhi - pAsuram 11 UDal kUDal ) A. Translation from SrImAn SaDagOpan's tamizh treatise:

The curly-haired godai (kuzhaRk-kODai) completes her kUDal tirumozhi on the topic of the kUDal exercise played by the gopi-s with a phala Sruti. She declares that whoever sings these 10 kUDal pASurams dealing with the gopis' acts of UDal-kUDal (being angry because they can't get Him right away when they want Him), uNardal-puNardal (telling kaNNan that He has been unfair to them, and kaNNan telling them He is sorry and joining back with them), etc., will never be separated from Him.

UDal kUDal uNardal puNardal
nIDu ninRa niRai pugazh Aycciyar
kUDalaik kuzhaRk-kODai mun kURiya
pADal pattum vallArkku illai pAvamE
B. Some additional thoughts:

UDal-kUDal - PVP interprets this as one phrase referring to the attribute of the gopi-s being angry because of their intense love for Him and not being able to get Him as soon as they want. In support of the former interpretation, SrI PBA emphasizes that UDal and kUDal should not be viewed as two separate words, but should be considered as one phrase referring to "being associated with UDal". He gives the following example of this UDal: "ennukku avaLai vittu ingu vandAi innam angE naDa nambi! nIyE!" (why did you leave her and come here, you can go back to her). Being told thus, emperumAn is not allowed to enter the house and the door is closed on Him.

SrI T. S. rAjagopAlan gives the interpretation using UDal and kUDal as two separate words - fight and harmony interspersed with each other with kr*shNan.

niRai pugazh Aycciyar - they are full of glory because they always have anubhavam of kaNNan. SrI PVP quotes SrI embAr: the gOpi-s are such dear devotees to Him that He longs to be with them; their devotion is such that He has to fast for 4 days to get this gopi, and fast for 10 days to be with the other gopi, etc.

illai pAvamE - SrI PVP remarks that ANDAL gives the phala Sruti that for one who chants these kUDal pASurams with devotion, there is no need to go through the agony of 'kUDal izahittal', as ANDAL is going through.

kuzhal kOdai - SrI PVP points out that the beauty of godA pirATTi's curly hair is such that it will make Him resort to kUDal to get Her.

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