Sri Vishnu Sahasranamam - SLOKA 102

AdhAra-nilayo dhAtApushpa-hAsaH praja-garaH    |
Urdhva-gaH sat-pathAcAraH prANa-daH praNavaH paNaH   ||

om AdhAra-nilayAya namaH
om dhAtre namaH
om pushpa-hAsAya namaH
om pra-jAgarAya namaH
om UrdhvagAya namaH
om sat-pathAcArAya namaH
om prANa-dAya namaH
om praNavAya namaH
om paNAya namaH

950. AdhAra-nilayaH –

The Abode of those who supportthe world through their righteous actions.

om AdhAra-nilayAya namaH.

`A' is a prefix meaning `from all sides, in all resepcts".  dhAra is  derived from the root dhR- dhAraNe - to support.  nilaya is derived from the root `lee - SleshaNe - to stick, to lie on', with the prefix ni-.   SrI vAsishTha explains the nAma as - jagad AdhArANAm api dhAraka iti AdHara-nilayaH - He is the Support of all those that are considered the support of the world.  This means that He is thesupport of all the deva-s such as brahmA, rudra, indra, the Sun and all the planets and their moons, the pa'nca mahA bhUta-s, etc.  Heis also present in every living being as their antaryAmi, supporting  them in every act of these beings. 

SrI BhaTTar specifically givesthe example of the likes of prahlAda,  vibhIshaNa,the pANDava-s, etc., whose righteous conduct in life is an example for us, and thus serve as the support for the world to follow.  BhavAn is the abode for such pious men, and so He is called AdhAra-nilayaH - dhArmikatayA jagad-AdhArAH prahlAda-vibhIshaNa-pANDavAdayaH, teshAm nilayaH AhdAra-nilayaH.  SrI BhaTTar quotes a Sloka from vishNu smRti in support: 

varNASrama Acara-parAH santaHSAstraika tatparAH   |
tvAm dhare! dhArayishyanti teshu tvad bhAram Ahitam   ||

"O! Mother Earth! Thosewho strictly adhere to the rules of conduct stipulated for different castes andstages of life, and also  scrupulouslyfollow the dictates of the SAstra-s, are your support.  On them your burden rests".

Note the emphasis here on theadherence to the dharma-s of the varNa- s (castes) and the Asrama-s (stages inlife, such as brahmacarya,  gRhasta,etc.).  These are the ones because of whom this earth keeps going; these are the ones who are supported by bhagavAn in their righteous observances and conduct - AdhAra-nilayaH.

SrImad SrImushNam ANDavanexplains the nAma in two ways:
AdhAra  bhUtAH sAttvikAH, teshAmnilayaH; or
AdhAra bhUtaH nilayAH yasya sa  AdhAra-nilayaH. 
The first one corresponds to the interpretation  discussed above.  The second interpretation means thatbhagavAn has, as His abode, those that support the earth through their dhArmiclife (AdhArAH).  This is a unique concept of the viSishTAdvaita sampradAyam, which is elaborated on by SrI veLukkuDi kRshnan.  Heexplains this with nammAzhvAr's periya tiruvantAdi pASuram 75:

puviyum iru viSumbum nin agattanee en
Seviyin vazhi pugundu en uLLAi avivinRi
yAn periyan nee periyai enpadanai yAr aRivAr?
Un parugu nEmiyAi! ULLu

"It is true that Yousupport everything including all the worlds, the  skies, etc.  But now You reside inside me by enteringinside me through my ears, and thus I am supporting You inside me.  Now Youtell me whether You are supporting me or I am supporting You - whether You are the bigger One or I am the bigger one.  You tell me,emperumAn with the cakra that drinks the blood of Your enemies".

The above pASuram of AzhvArsupports the alternate interpretation that bhagavAn has as His residence (nilayam)the hearts and minds of  those whosupport the varNa and ASrama dharma-s (AdhAra-s), and so He has the nAma AdhAra-nilayaH.

SrI kRshNan also quotes thegiTA Slokam 7.18 as additional support:

udArAH sarva evaite j~nAnItvAtmaiva me matam    |
AsthitaH sa hi yuktAtmA mAmeva anuttamAm gatim   ||   (gItA 7.18)

"All these are indeedgenerous, but I deem the man of knowledge to be My own very self; 
for he, integrated, is devoted to Me alone as the  highest end". 

The declaration by Lord kRshNathat the j~nAnI is His own self, once again supports the second interpretationabove.

SrI Sa'nkara explains the nAmain terms of bhagavAn's support of the pa'nca bhUta-s etc. - 
pRthivyAdInAm pa'nca bhUtAnAm AdhAratvAt AdhAra- nilayaH.

SrI vAsishTha gives numerousexamples from the Sruti in support:

- yatrAdhi sUra udito vibhAtikasmai devAya havishA vidhema    | (yajur. 32.7)

- yataH sUrya udetyastam yatraca gacchati   |          
tadeva manye'ham jyeshTham tadu nAtyeti ki'ncana    ||   (atharva. 10.8.16)

"I hold that Supremebecause of which the Sun rises, sets, and rests. 
Nothing surpasses the Will of this Supreme".

   -    na te vishNo jAyamAno na jAto deva mahimnaH paramantamApa   |           
udastabhnA nAkamRshvam bRhantam dAdhartha prAcIm kakubham pRthivyAH   ||  (Rg. 7.99.2)

"None who is born or beingborn, Lord vishNu, has reached the utmost limit of Thy grandeur.  The vasthigh vault of heaven hast Thou supported, and fixed earth's eastern pinnaclesecurely".

- yasyorushu trishuvikramaNeshu adhikshiyanti bhuvanAni viSvA (Rg. 1.154.2)

"He within whose threewide-extended paces all living creatures have their habitation".

SrI rAdhAkRshNa SAstri choosesto interpret the nAma as "One Who is resident -nilayaH, in the pa'nca bhUta-s". Even though the five elements, by themselves, perform different functions withinour body  (e.g., agni converts thefood that we consume into forms such as  blood; water carries this into the different parts of the body';  earth supports all the beings of this world; etc.), bhagavAn, by being present in these elements, ensures that there is mutual coordination such that all beings function as a unit, in a healthy  way.  Sri SAstri quotes the gItA Slokam 15.13-14 toillustrate this  point:

gAm AviSya ca bhUtAnidhArayAmaham ojasA   |
pushNAmi caushadhIH sarvAH somo bhUtvA rasAtmakaH   ||   (15.13)

"And entering the earth Iuphold all beings by My strength. 
I  nourish all herbs, becoming thejuicy soma". 

aham vaiSvAnaro bhUtvA prANInAmdeham ASritaH   |
prANApAna samAyuktaH pacAmyannam catur-vidham   ||   (15.13)

"Becoming the digestivefire, I function within the bodies of all living beings.  In union withinward and outward breaths, I digest the four kinds of food - chewed (like riceetc.), sucked (like mango  fruitetc.), licked (like medicinal power mixed with honey), and  drunk (like water)".

SrI SAstri also gives supportfrom the bRhadAranyaka Upanishad:

yaH sarveshu bhUteshu tishThansarvebhyo bhUtebhyo'ntaro yam sarvANi
bhUtAni na vidur-yasya sarvANi bhUtAni SarIram yaH sarvANi
bhUtAnyantaro yamayatyesha ta AtmAntaryAmyamRtaH ityAdhi-bhUtam
athAdhyAtmam   ||  (bRha. 3.7.19)

"He who dwells in allbeings, who is within all beings, whom all beings do not know, whose body is allbeings, and who controls all  beingsfrom within, is your Internal Ruler - the Self, the  Immortal". 

SrI satya sandha tIrtha givesan explanation based on the dhArA or  thedownpour of rain caused by indra in gokulam: 
"A - samantAt dhArA  =devendra-kRta vRshTi dhArA yeshAm ta A-dhArA gopAlAH,
teshAm  govardhana dhAraNena nilayaASraya iti A-dhAra-nilayaH" -
He Who  protected the gopAla-s orcowherds from the intense downpour of rain caused by devendra, through the govardhana dhAraNam.

951. dhAtA –

a) One Who created the Universe(dhA - to produce, or dhA - to lay upon).
b) He Who supports and sustains (dhA - dhAraN poshaNayoSca).
c) He Who has no support other than Himself (a-dhAtA).
d) He Who `drinks' everything during pralaya (dheT - pAne - to drink).
e) One Who is the antaryAmi of the four-faced brahmA.

om dhAtre namaH.

We studied this nAma in Slokam 5 (nAma 43). 

SrI vAsishTha gives the root for the nAma as
`dhA - dhAraNa  poshaNoyoH dAne ca'- to put, to grant, to produce, to bear.

a) SrI BhaTTar derives theinterpretation for the instance of the  nAmain Slokam 5 based on the root dhA - 
to put, place, lay, put in,  lay onor upon (SrI Apte's dictionary), and gives the meaning "The  Creator"for the nAma.  
The detailed explanation is provided under  nAma43 (Slokam 5).

b) For the current instance ofthe nAma, SrI BhaTTar gives the  interpretation- 
svayam ca dharmAcAryakeNa dhAtA - He is called dhAtA  becauseHe practices dharma rigorously, 
and is thus the best  Preceptor ofdharma.  

SrI M. V. rAmAnujAcAryaexplains SrI BhaTTar's  interpretationbased on the root "dhA - dhArana poshaNayoH - 
to  support, to sustain", andexplains SrI BhaTTar's interpretation as  referringto bhagavAn being the Sustainer and Supporter of the earth  throughstrict adherence to dharma in all His incarnations.  Thus, He setsHimself as a model for us to follow.  SrI BhaTTar gives support  from the gItA:

na me pArtha asti kartavyamtrishu lokeshu ki'ncana     |
nAnavAptam avAptavyam varta eva ca karmaNi   ||            (gItA 3.22)

"For Me, arjuna! There isnothing in all the three worlds which ought  to be done, 
nor is there anything that has not been acquired, and  oughtto be acquired.  
Yet I go on working" (to set an example to others, as explained further inSloka 3.23 of the gItA).

Different interpreters givetheir different anubhavam-s of the unending dimension of His guNa ofprotecting 
and nurturing all His creation.

SrI aNNa'ngarAcArya explainsthe nAma as -  
He Who supports the world  through His teachings (in the forms of veda-s, gItA etc.).,and  through His own code of conduct(during His incarnations).  

SrI  kRshnanillustrates this by referring us to Lord rAma's incarnation,  
which is an outstanding example of the adherence to dharma in all its  intricacies.

For the earlier occurrence ofthis nAma, SrI vAsishTha gives the interpretation 
that bhagavAn supports (bears) the earth in the form  ofananta.  
This is the same interpretation that Sri Sa'nkara gives as well - anantAdirUpeNa viSvam bibharti iti dhAtA.

SrI kRshNa datta bhAradvAjgives the interpretation -
dadhAti  poshayati svajanAn itidhAtA - He Who protects and supports His  devotees.

c) Sri Sa'nkara uses the pAThama-dhAtA in the current instance for his primary interpretation, and gives theinterpretation as -  
"svAtmanA dhRtasya asya anyo dhAtA na asti iti a-dhAtA" -
One for Whom there is no other support except Himself .  

SrI vAsishTha also  givesthis pATham as an alternative, and gives the same  interpretation.

d) As an alternative, if thepATham `dhAtA' is used, SrI Sa'nkara  givesthe interpretation based on the root dheT - pAne - to drink,  andthe explanation is -
samhAra samaye sarvAH prajA dhayati = pibati  iti dhAtA - 
He Who drinks all beings during the time of pralaya. 

SrI  vAsishTha gives this interpretation as one of his alternate  interpretationsalso -
dhayati = pibati viSvam iti dhAtA.

SrI satya sandha tIrtha givesthe interpretation - dhAtA = dhAraNa  poshaNakartA.

SrI baladeva vidyA bhUshaNexplains the nAma in Slokam 5 as -
utpatti  vinASa virahAdanAdi nidhanaH kAraNatve viri'ncyAdibhyo viSesham Aha  dhAtA iti -
He Who creates all beings, protects them, and destroys  themat the appropriate time 
(in the forms of brahmA, vishNu and  rudrarespectively).

e) The term dhAtA is also usedto refer to the four-faced brahmA.   
SrI aNNa'ngarAcArya uses this meaning, and explains the nAma 43 as -  
"nAnmugak kadavuLai SarIramAgak koNDavar" - "One Who has brahmAas  part of His body".  
We all know that our body is at our self's  disposal, and its sole purpose is to serve our soul.  
So also,  brahmA, as part ofbhagavAn's body, is there solely to serve  emperumAn.

952. pushpa-hAsaH –

He Who is like the bloom of a flower.

om pushpa-hAsAya namaH.

The roots involved in the nAma are:  
pushpa - vikasane - to open, to  blow,and has - hasane - to smile, to excel, to bloom etc.   
The nAma  signifies the tendernessand pleasing nature of bhagavAn towards His  devotees.

SrI BhaTTar explains the nAma as - 
"evam nishpAdita svAnubhava- SaktInAm sAyamiva pushpasya hAso bhogyataullAsaH asya iti pushpa- hAsaH" - 
In the case of those who are blessed with the ability to  enjoyHim, He manifests His enjoyable nature gently like a flower  thatblossoms in the evening.  So He is called pushpa-hAsaH.  

SrImad SrImushNam ANDavan explains SrI BhaTTar's bhAshyamas a  reference to bhagavAn' Sakti-sor powers that are enjoyable for the  devotee(svAnubhava SaktInAm), since they blossom forth towards the  devoteesas needed for protecting them (since He has Sakti-s or  parAkrama-sthat are worthy of enjoyment by the devotee - bhogya  bhUta Sakti-s). 

SrI veLukkuDi kRshNan describes the nAma in terms ofbhagavAn's whole  tirumEni as anillustration of His flower-like tenderness.   This  tendernessis particularly reserved for His dear devotees - thus  illustratingHis avatArapryojanam that is the current topic of SrI  BhaTTar's vyAkhyAnam.  He draws the parallel between theinterface of  bhagavAn and Hisdevotees on the one hand, and His flower-like  tendernesson the other.   For His devotees, having His divine Feet  attheir head is like having the soft flower in their head.   His  LotusFeet are soft to touch just as the flowers are soft to touch.    BhagavAn'swhole tirumEni is soft to touch, just as the flowers are.   Theflowers blossom on seeing the Sun, and bhagavAn is delighted when  Hesees His devotees, who are like the Sun to Him.   In other words,  Hisdevotees enjoy Him like a beautiful tender flower.  SrI kRshNan  refersus to periya tirumizhi-8.1.5, where tiruma'ngai AzhvAr enjoys  bhagavAn'stirumEni as pushpa-hASan:

aDit-talamum tAmaraiyE am-kaigaLum pa'nkayamE enginrALAl
kuDit-talamum poR-pUNum en ne'njattuL agalAdu enginrALAl
vaDit-taDam kaN malar avaLO varia Agattu uL iruppAL enginrALAl
kaDik-kamalam kaL ugakkum kaNNa purattu ammAnaik kaNDAL kolO.  (periya.tiru. 8.1.5)

"His Feet are soft like lotus flowers.  HisHands, with which He  picks us upwhen He surrender at His Feet, are equally soft like  lotus flowers.  Then He embraces us with affection, andthe divine  beauty of His tiru-muDiand His divine ornaments that we get to enjoy  atthat time, is something that will never leave our thoughts ever.   Wepray for the blessings of the One with broad eyes (SrI devi) Who  isseated on the lotus flower in His broad vaksha sthalam (His  chest), so that we are united with Him for ever.  ThisemperumAn is  waiting for us in thedivya kshetram by name tiruk-kaNNa puram, which  is itself the place full of fragrant lotus flowers drippingsweet  honey".  

Another pASuram that SrI kRshNan refers us to is fromnammAzhvAr's  tiruvAimozhi (3.1.2),where AzhvAr describes bhagavAn's eyes, feet,  hands, etc., for all of which the tender, fragrant, andbeautiful  lotus flowers are but avery poor comparison (since they have nowhere  nearthe beauty compared to emperumAn's beauty) - 
kaTTuriakkil  tAmarai nin kaN pAdamkai ovvA.

SrI kRshNa datta bhAradvAj gives a similar interpretation - 
pushpamiva mRduH svajana manoharI hAso yasya sa pushpa-hAsaH - 
He Who  has a sweet and enchantingsmile that delights the hearts of His  devotees.

SrI Sa'nkara interprets the nAma as referring to bhagavAnblossoming  into the form theUniverse - mukulAtmanA sthitAnAm pushpANAm hAsavat  prapa'nca rUpeNa vikAsaH asya asti iti pushpa-hAsaH - As thebuds of  flowers blossom forth, Hehas blossomed forth in th form of the  Universe.

SrI rAdhAkRshNa SAstri's anubhavam is that bhagavAn makesHis  devotees blossom with delightat His thought, and He also blossoms in  theirheart and gives fragrance to their thought, and so He is called  pushpa-hAsaH.

SrI vAsishTha explains the nAma as
"yo sadA prasanna-mukaH Soka- rahistaSca bhavati,
tasmin nishpApe Soka-moha-rahite svayam  bhagavAn virAjate -
sa vishNuH pushpa-hAsaH"  -
He Who is always of a very  pleasingdisposition, who is beyond any sorrow, untainted by any  defects,devoid of any desire or want, this is the significance of  thisnAma".  He points out that, just as it is the dharma (nature) of  theflower to blossom beautifully, so also it is the nature of  bhagavAnto have a sweet and smiling countenance. 

953. pra-jAgaraH

He Who is awake day and night,for the protection   of thedevotees.

om pra-jAgarAya namaH.

SrI vAsishTha indicates theroot for the nAma as "jAgR - nidrAkshaye -  to awake.  
pra- is a upasarga.  prakarsheNa jAgarti iti pra-jAgaraH -    
He Who is awake in a special and unique way.  The uniqueness is   that He is always awake, 
and always thinking of ways to help the jIva- sattain Him. 

SrI BhaTTar explains the nAmaalong the above lines - rAtrim divam   pra-jAgartiiti pr-jAgaraH - He Who is awake day and night, to protect His devotees, like afarmer intent on protecting his crops.    Hegives a mantra from kaThopanishad in support:

ya eshu supteshu jAgarti kAmamkAmam purusho nirmimANaH   (kaTho.5.8)

"This purusha (thesupreme) keeps awake while others (the individual   souls) are asleep, creating through his eternal willpower.  (That is  the effulgentand that is Brahman)". 

SrI kRshNan explains this asbhagavAn keeping wide awake while we are   all fast asleep, bestowing all our desires and requeststhat are   infinite andnever-ending.

SrImad SrImushNam ANDavanpoints out an obvious demonstration of His   beingawake, in the form of His looking after us, while we are fast   asleep. We all go to bed with the full hope that we will wake up   alivethe next morning.  And He, as pra-jAgaraH, is there to wake us   upsafe and sound, fully rejuvenated, the next morning.

SrI Sa'nkara also interpretsthe nAma as One Who is ever awake, as   partof His nature - nitya prabuddha svarUpatvAt jAgarti it pra- jAgaraH.  This is interpreted by some as indicating that bhagavAn is  not affected by nescience,and thus He is not affected by sleep that   isa result of tamo guna etc. 

SrI raghunAtha tIrtha gives yetanother anubhavam - 
He Who liberates   theaccomplished devotees from sleep - 
prakasheNa bhaktAn jAgarayati   nidra-rahitAnmuktAn karoti iti pra-jAgaraH.

SrI satya sandha tIrtha looksat the nAma as praja + aga + ra.  In   this interpretation, praja = He Who creates; aga = HeWho resides in   the hills ofve'nkaTAcala, ra = ramati = He Who enjoys the company of   devoteesby being in ven'kaTAcala.  (prakarsheNa janayati lokAn it   prajA;ageshu ve'nkaTAdi parvateshu ramata iti aga-raH, prajaSca asau   agaraScaiti prajAgaraH.

This guNa is alsoreflected in the world through the pa'naca bhUta-s   forwhich He is the antaryAmi, and ensures that they are all functioning in theinterest of the jIva-s constantly -   vAyu, agni,   water,AkASa, etc. never sleep.  So also, the Sun never sleeps, the AtmA neversleeps, and the prANa never sleeps. 

954.Urdhva-gaH –

a) He Who rises high. 
b) He Who leads His devotees to SrI vaikunTham, the   highest goal of the jIva-s. 
c) He Who is above everyone else in all respects.

om Urdhva-gAya namaH.

a) The term Urdhva means`above'.  Urdhva-gaH means "One Who rises   high".  SrI BhaTTar explains the nAma as acontinuation of his   explanationof the previous nAma - He Who sleeplessly protects His   creation.  He devotes Himself to this task ofrakshNam even without   sleep,because He aims high in whatever He does, and so He is "Urdhva- gaH".  SrI BhaTTar's words are:  svabhAva-tu'ngaH - HeWho, by   nature, rises high ineverything.

His aiming high in everythingis sung by nammAzhvAr through the   phrase"karuttin kaN periyan" (tiruvAi. 10.8.8) - "He Who is great   whenit comes to paying attention to His goal".  nammAzhvAr also   identifiesHis paramount goal "kAkkum iyalvinan" (tiruvAi. 2.2.9) -   HeWhose Nature it is to protect.   It is this paramount goal of His   thatis being sung in this nAma.

SrImad SrImushNam ANDavanexplains the nAma as "uyarvaRa uyar nalam   uDaiyavan yavan avan"  (tiruvAi. 1.1.1) - HeWho possesses auspicious   qualitiesthat cannot at all be excelled".

SrI Sa'nkara explains the nAmaas - sarveshAm upari tishThan Urdhva-  gaH- He Who stands above all.

b) SrI ananta kRshNa SAtrygives an alternate interpretation that the   nAmasignifies that Lord vishNu is the One Who takes us to SrI   viakunTham.  

c) SrI vAsishTha interprets thenAma as - sarveshAm Urdhva sthiti   SAlitvAt,sarvataH SreshThatvAt vA Urdhva-gaH - "He who is above   everyonein all aspects".  He notes that even in real life, the place   of knowledge, namely the brain, is above all otherorgans in the   body,reflecting an aspect of this guNa of bhagavAn.


a) One Who leads His devoteesin the right   path. 
b) He Who follows the path of dharma in His incarnations.

om sat-paThAcArAya namaH.

patha means path.  satrefers to `righteous'.  The word AcAra is   derived from the root car - gatau - to walk.  `AcAra'   means `conduct,behavior'. 

a) Sri BhaTTar interprets thenAma as "One Who leads His devotees in the right path" - sat-pathe =svAbhAvika dAsya mArge, AcaraNam =   teshAmpravartanam asya iti sat-pathAcAraH - He Who induces (leads)   thedevotee in the right path of kainkaryam (servitude) to Him, which   isthe true nature of the devotee.  Recall that in this segment, Sri BhaTTaris interpreting the nAma-s in terms of the benefits to the   devoteesfrom His guNa-s (avtAra prayojanam).  Since it is in the interestof the jIva-s to recognize and follow the relationship of Sesha-SeshIbhAva (the Master-servant relationship between the   Supreme Being and the jIva), bhagavAn facilitates this,and leads the devotee in this path. SrI BhaTTar refers us to the words of advice given by Lord kRshNa to arjuna:

a-nityam a-sukham lokam imamprApya bhajasva mAm  |  (gItA   9.33)

"You are now in thetransitory and unhappy world.  To get over it, worship Me".

SrI satya sandha tIrtha alsogives an interpretation similar to that   of SrI BhaTTar - sat-pathe = san-mArge Acarayati yogyAniti sat-  pathAcAraH.  

b) Sri Sa'nkara interprets thenAma as - satAm panthAnaH karmANi sat-pathAH  | 
tAn Acarati esha iti sat-pathAcAraH - 
He Who follows the   path whichgood men have chalked out in His incarnations, is sat-pathAcAraH.

SrI rAdhAkRshNa SAstri refersus to Slokam 3.22 in the gItA, where   bhagavAntells us 
that He follows the path followed by the great ones inHis incarnations, just to set an example for others to follow:

na me partha asti kartavyamtrishu lokeshu ki'ncana    |  
nAnavAptam avAptavyam varta eva ca karmaNi   ||       (gItA 3.22)

"For Me, arjuna, there isnothing in all the three worlds that ought   to be done, 
nor is there anything un-acquired that ought to be   acquired.  
Yet I go on working (to set an example to others)".

SrI vAsishTha interprets the nAma as:  
sat-pathe AcAro yasya sa sat-  pathAcAraH- He Whose conduct or behavior is along the righteous   path, is sat-pathAcAraH. 

956.prANa-daH - The Life-giver.

om prANa-dAya namaH.

This nAma is one of two nAma-sthat is repeated four times in SrI BhaTTar's pATham (the other nAma isnivRttAtmA). The other instances forthe current nAma are:  66, 323, 409 - Sloka-s 8, 35, 44.

The root from which the wordprANa is derived is aN - prANane - to breathe,to live, to move. pra- is an upasarga, meaning `in a special   way'.The word `prANa' can be translated as `vAyu" or air - prANyate =jIvyate anena iti prANaH = vAyuH. 

The ending stem -da of the nAmacan be interpreted in several ways:

- dadAti - gives (dadAti itidaH)   - do - avakhaNDane - tocut (dyati) - kAlAtmanA avakhaNDayati -   prANomRtyuH prANastakmA (atharva. 11.4.11)  -dai - Sodhane - to purify.  prANAnAn dApayati Sodhayati   SudhyantivA.  - dA - lavane - to cut; prANAn dAti lunAti it prANa-daH (kAlaH  sarvasya IsvaraH - atharva.19.53.8)

In essence, it is because ofHim that beings breathe, and it is becauseof Him that they cease breathing.  Here is the beautiful composition of SrIvAsishTha summarizing the various interpretations thatare possible for the nAma prANa-daH:

prANAn dadAti, kimu vA dyati,dAti kim vA   prANan viSodhayati, dApayati iti kim vA  |  
sarvatra sarva vidhinA sa hi vishNur-eko  yaHprANado'sti kathitaH SrutibhiH purANaH   ||

"He is the Giver of prANa,the Taker of prANa, the Purifier of prANa,   Enlightener of prANa,  and is present everywhereand in everything in the form of prANa.  The Supreme Deity,. Lord vishNu,is sung thus as   prANa-daH in the Sruti-s".

Other references to the Srutithat are provided by SrI vAsishTha are:

prAna-dA apAna-dA vyAna-dAvarco-dA varivo-dAH    |  
anyAns-te asmAt-tapantu hetayaH pAvako asmabhyam Sivo bhava    ||    (yajur. 17.15)

yaH prANa-daH prAnadavAnbabhUva yasmai lokAH dhRtavantaH ksharanti     | (atharva. 4.35.5)

prANo mRtyuH takmA prANam devAupAsate    |  
prANo ha satyavAdinam uttamo loka Adadhat   || (atharva.11.4.11)

Another independent line ofinterpretation given by SrI vAsishTha is based on the root prA - pUraNe - tofill.  In this interpretation, he   givesthe derivation - prANaH = pUrNaH, pURNasya dAtA prANa-daH - He   Whogives fullness to everything.  He gives real-life examples, such   asour finding that the minerals are distributed uniformly through   ourbodies, we find the milk oozing out from any part of the tree   thatis cut, etc.  And he also gives the beings all kinds of comforts to livewith.  So He is One Who bestows fullness - prANa-daH.

Several interpretations of thenAma are possible.  One interpretation   is: PrANam = jIvanam dadAti  iti prANa-daH - He Whosustains life   through vAyu orair is prANa-daH.  PrANa is one of the five airs that   enable the functions of the body (the others being apAna,vyAna,   etc.). 

SrI BhaTTar's interpretationsfor the four instances of the nAma are   given below:

66:  asya aiSvaryasyaprathamam vishayam - prANam dadAti - Giver of   life (strength and vitality) that enables the devoteesto perform   eternalkai'nkaryam to Him.  SrI BhaTTar gives the example of   bhagavAngiving this energy and will to the nitya sUris- to serve Him   uninterruptedly- sUribhyaH sadA-darSana-rUpa-svAnubhava paricaraNa- anukUla bala-daH.  The nitya sUri-s not only get the ability toserve   Him, but also thebenefit of performing kai'nkaryam to Him eternally,   beingwith Him constantly, and enjoying Him permanently.  This is the   firstexample of the foremost action of bhagavAn, signifying His   lordshipover all. 

- ya Atma-dAH bala-dAH (taitt.yajur. 4.1.8) - He gives the   Selfand He bestows strength.  - SadaivaHprANa AviSati (bR. Upa. 3.5.20) - The vital airs   enter the body of a created being, along with theSupreme Divinity.

BhagavAn is pRANa-daH also inthe sense that He is the prANa or life   for His true devotees, and He gives Himself for them toenjoy.  SrI   kRshNa dattabhAradvAj captures this thought with his interpretation -  prANAn = jIvanam dadAti bhaktebhyaH AtmAna darSayitvA iti prANa-daH.

323.  Sri BhaTTarinterprets the sequence of eleven nAma-s starting   from nAma 323 as a description of the kUrmAvatAra. In this context,   SrI BhaTTarinterprets the term prANa to refer to strength, and the   nAma prANa-daH as One Who gave the strength to the deva-sduring the   episode describingthe churning of the Milky Ocean.   So bhagavAn is   called prANa-daH - The Giver of strength.  Theamara koSa gives   severalmeanings for the word prANa - vital breath, strength,   prowess,life etc. - SaktiH parAkrama prANau . (amara koSa 2.8.102),   andone of the meanings for the word prANa is seen to be strength.

SrI T. S. Raghavendran givesthe following Sloka in support of the   aboveinterpretation:

marutAm bala dAnAd-hi samudramethane bhRSam    |  
prANadaSca samuddishTaH kUrmarUpatayA hi saH   ||

In a sense, bhagavAn not onlygave strength to the deva-s for the   purposeof churning the ocean, but He Himself gave His strength to   thewhole effort by serving as the support for the huge mountain that   wasused as the axle for churning the ocean, in the form of a kUrma   (HiskUrma incarnation).  He is meditated upon as ananta-bala Saktan   (omananta-bala-Saktaye namaH) - One Who is endowed with unlimited   strengthand power.

409: Giver of life to all.  SrI BhaTTar's vyAkhyAnam   is "prasiddhAnapi prANAn dadAti iti prANa-daH". Sri SrInivAsa   Raghavantranslates this as "One Who bestows the well-known life   itself to all", but   SrI Satya MurthyAyyangar chooses to translate   itas "The Imparter of liveliness (instead of the Imparter of   life)".  SrI BhaTTar gives the example of thestate of the trees,   shrubs,flowers etc. in ayodhyA when SrI rAma was separated from sItA   through the abduction by rAvaNa.  Even theywithered because of   sadnessover this event: 

api vRkshAH parimlAnAHsa-pushpA'nkura korakAH   |  (ayodhyA.   59.4)  
pariSushka palASAni vanAnupavanAni ca     |  (ayodhyA. 59.5)

"Even the trees with theirflowers, buds, and sprouts withered.  All   that remained in the forests and gardens were only dryleaves".

On the other hand, when rAmareturned from exile to ayodhyA later   withsitA, fruits and flowers appeared in plenty even out of season   (describedby SrImad vAlmIki in SrImad rAmAyaNam).

956:  SrI BhaTTar givesanother example of His giving `life' to the   devotees:  He confers redemption on those soulsthat have been   poisoned bythe indulgence in material pleasures - Atam ujjIvanam   dadAtiiti prANa-daH - He gives a new life to these souls.  The   niruktiauthor describes this through the following words:

kAntAdi vishaya AsaktyA nashTaAtmabhyaH kRpA vaSAt    |  
sad-Atma ujjIvanam yo'sau dadAti prANa-daH tu atyam   ||

"BhagavAn is calledprANa-daH because He instills life in the jIva-s   whose souls are getting lost because  they havebeen poisoned by the sensuouspleasures".

SrI Sa'nkara's vyAkhyAna-s forthe different instances of the nAma   are:

- Slokam 8: prANAn dadAticeshTayati iti prANa-daH - He Who   bestowsvital airs.    kohyevAnyAt kaH prANyAt (taitt. 2.7)  - (But for this), Who then   couldlive, and who could breathe?  -Alternate interpretation by Sri Sa'nkara: prANAn kAlAtmanA   dyatikhaNDayati , prANAn dAyati (dApayati) Sodhayati vA, prANAn dAti   lunAti iti vA prANa-daH - He Who takes away the life inthe form of   death, orpurifies or destroys the prANa-s (breaths). - Slokam 35: surANAm asurANAm ca yathAsa'nkhyam prANam dadAti   dyati vA iti prANa-daH _ He Who gives life (energy) tothe gods, and   destroys(kills) the life of the demoniac beings (asura-s).    -Slokam 44: He Who gives life to all beings at the time of   creation,or He Who withdraws all life at the time of pralaya -   sRshTyAdausarva-prANinAm antaryAmitayA prANAn dadAti iti prANa-daH    |  
dyati khaNDayati prANinAm prANAn pralaya kAla iti vA prANa-daH.    

Slokam 102 (current): mRtAn parIkshit-prabhRtIn jIvayan   prANa-daH- He Who revived the life of parIkshit and others.  (Recall   thatSrI KrshNa also revived the son of the guru with whom He formally performed gurukula vAsam, by retrieving the son from yama   lokam).

It is obvious how both SrIBhaTTar and Sri Sa'nkara have explained   the nAma-s such that there is no punarukti dosham.

SrI rAdhAkRshNa SAstri givesanother dimension to the anubhavam of   thenAma -  
in His rAma incarnation, He declares that He will even giveHis life in order to protect those who have surrendered to Him:

apyaham jIvitam jahyAm tvAm vAsIte sa-lakshmaNAm   |   
na tu pratij~nAm samSrutya brAhmaNebhyo viSeshataH    || (rAmAyaNa   AraNya. 10.19)

(Adressing sItA pirATTi):  
"I won't mind sacrificing My own life, or   eventhose of You and lakshmaNa;  
but I will not swerve from the word Igive especially to the brAhmaNa-s".

Other interpretations, given inSrI T. S. Raghavendran's book, are:

- prANAn indiryANi dadAti itprANa-daH - He who gives indirya-s   toall and makes them function,  
- prNAn indiryANi dyati khaNDayati iti prANa-daH - He Who   removes the attachment to indriya-s for the sAttvicsouls.  
- PrakrsheNa aNam sukha virruddha duHkham dyati khaNDayati iti   prANa-daH- He Who removes the grief that is opposed to happiness.    
(NaH = sukham, tad-viruddhatvAt a-NaH = SokhaH, prakrsheNa tama dyati   =khaNDayati iti prANa-daH).

957. praNavaH –

He Who guides the devotee to surrender to Him with love.

om praNavAya namaH.

nAma 410 – praNamaH, is related.  `praNavaH' is an alternate pATham for nAma 410.  
The interpretation for the pATham `praNamaH' is covered under nAma 410 (Slokam 44).  
The interpretations for the nAma `praNavaH' are covered here. 

SrI vAsishTha indicates the derivation of the nAma from the root Nu – stutau – to praise, to commend.  pra- is a prefix, meaning `in a special way'.  praNauti iti praNavaH, praNamayati iti vA  – He Who is praised or worshipped is `praNavaH'.   Just as the root bhU becomes bhav, the root Nu becomes Nav (pANini sUtra 3.3.57 – Rdorap).  Pra + Nav = praNav.   In interpretations below that contain `na' in the root, the na become `Na' by the application of the pANini sUtra 8.4.14 – upasargAt a-samAse'pi NopadeSasya, leading to the change of the `na' to `Na'.

SrI BhaTTar's vyAkhyAnam for the nAma is:  
praNavena IdRSa sambandham udbhodhya, "mAm namaskuru" iti sva-caraNaravindayoH tAn praNamayati  - 
"By means of the sacred `praNava' mantra, bhagavAn reveals to His devotees the true relationship between Him and them, 
and makes them understand the need for surrendering to Him". 

SrI rAdhAkRshNa SAstri quotes the yoga sUtra – tasya vAcakaH praNavaH (1.27) – 
"The praNava mantra is a manifestation in words of paramAtmA".   
This mantra reveals Him to us, when we understand the meaning of the mantra.  
Again, when we understand the deeper meaning of the mantra, it will lead us to worship Him. 

praNava refers to the mantra represented by the three letters – a, u, and m – "aum" or "OM".  This syllable, which is considered a mantra that is the essence of all veda-s, is considered as a manifestation of bhagavAn Himself in sound form.  Detailed vyAkhyAna for this mantra has been expounded by the great AcArya-s, and this should be learnt from the AcArya-s.  The mantra reminds us, the jIva-s, of the eternal and inseparable relationship of the jIvAtmA to the paramAtmA in a Sesha-SeshI relationship. 

SrI V. N. Vedanta deSikan has translated SrI M. V. Ramanujacharya's interpretation for the nAma thus:  "BhagavAn informs the souls – if they can understand – of the perennial bond of relationship existing between Himself and the individual soul, as imbedded in the secret import of the praNava mantra.   The key is that "we should try and understand" this eternal relationship between us and Him, and the true nature of our selves, and surrender to Him.

In the last chapter of the gItA, almost near the end, bhagavAn summarizes His instructions to arjuna:

man-manA bhava mad-bhakto mad-yAjI mAm namas-kuru    | 
mAmeva eshyasi satyam te pratijAne priyo'si me     ||             (18.65)

"Focus your mind on Me;  Be My devotee; Be My worshipper;  Prostrate before Me.  
You shall come to Me alone.  I promise you, truly, for you are dear to Me".

It is enlightening to read bhagavad rAmAnuja's explanation of the meaning of the Slokam, so that we truly understand the nature of this obeisance that bhagavAn instructs us to offer to Him. 

mad-bhaktaH bhava – "atyartham mama priyaH atyarthamatpriyatvena ca niratiSaya priyAm smRti santatim kurushva ityarthaH".  
This is translated by SrI AdidevAnanda as: 
"Focus your mind on Me; Be My devotee.  Be one to whom I am incomparably dear.  Since I am the object of superabundant love, medidate on Me, i.e., practice the succession of memory of unsurapassed love of Me.  Such is the meaning".  

Note the use of word `priyam' thrice in this one sentence of vyAkhyAnam by SrI rAmAnuja.  This priyam is the basis of the relationship between Him and us.  It is because of His intense love and compassion to us that we should bow to Him, and surrender to Him, and He assures us that He will redeem us as a result.

mad-yAjI bhava – "tatrApi mad-bhakta iti anushajyate  | 
yajanam pUjanam atyartha priya mad-ArAdhano bhava   | 
ArAdhanam hi paripUrNa Sesha vRttiH".

Translation:  "Be My worshipper (yAjI).  Here also, the expression `Be My devotee' is applicable.  Yaj~na is worship.  
Worship Me as One exceedingly dear to you.  Worship (ArAdhana) is complete subservience to the Lord".

Note again the emphasis on `atyartha priyam'.  This is the basis of the ArAdhana that bhagavAn is advising us to practice.  
The complete subservience is based on our utmost love to Him, and not based on any other factor such as fear etc.

mAm namas-kuru – namo namanam mayi atimAtra-prahvI bhAvam atyartha-priyam kuru ityarthaH |

Translation:  "Prostrate before Me".   Prostration means `bowing down'.  
The meaning is `Bow down humbly before Me with great love'.  
Once again, note the emphasis by bhagavad rAmAnuja on `atyartha priyam kuru' – perform this act with great love.

For those who thus surrender to Him, bhagavAn says:  mAm eva eshyasi, satyam te pratijAne" – "I make this solemn promise to you.  You shall attain Me as a result".  These are not mere empty words, because bhagavAn continues:  "priyo'si me" – "You are dear to Me".   Thus, bhagavAn is not just advising us to worship Him with love as the basis, but He is bound to us by the same love, even more intensely than we can ever command.  Elsewhere bhagavAn has already declared:  "He in whom there is great love to Me, I hold him also as exceedingly dear to Me.  I Myself will enable him to attain Me".  (gItA 7.17).

SrImad SrImushNam ANDavan points out that the spirit of the gItA Slokam above is best understood if we look at the phrases as "man-manA eva bhava", "mad-bhata eva bhava", "mad-yAjI eva bhava", " mAm eva namas-kuru", "mAm eva eshyasi" –  Meditate on Me alone, Worship Me alone, Prostrate only to Me; You will definitely attain Me without any doubt. 

SrI BhaTTar also gives support from the atharva Siras:  pRaNAn sarvAn paramAtmani praNamayati, etasmAt praNavaH  | - "The mantra is called praNava mantra, because it makes all souls to obey, and pay respects to, the paramAtmA" (as indicated in the earlier translation, this is considered the greatest privilege by those who understand the significance of the mantra).

SrI Sa'nkara interprets the current instance of the nAma as a reference to bhagavAn through the sound of the syllable "OM".  Since bhagavAn is represented by this syllable in word form, this syllable is none other than bhagavAn – 
praNavo nAma paramAtmano vAcaka om-kAraH tad-abhedhopacAreNa ayam praNavaH.

For the instance of the nAma in Slokam 44, Sri Sa'nkara gives the interpretation – 
praNauiti iti praNavaH – He Who is praised.  
He gives the sanatkumAra vacanam "praNamantIha yam vedAH tasmAt praNava ucyate" – "The veda-s pay obeisance to Him, He is named praNava". 

SrI kRshNa datta bhAradvAj explains the nAma as "prakarsheNa nUyate – 
stUyate sadbhiH iti praNavaH" – He Who is praised uniquely by the devoted. 

SrI satya sandha tIrtha gives the interpretation for the nAma as – 
prakarshena nayati iti praNavaH – Lord vishNu is called praNavaH because He regulates or puts the world in orderly form in a splendid way.

SrI baladeva vidyAbhUshaN gives the interpretation – 
nitya nUtanatvAt praNavaH (prakesheNa nUtanatvAt praNavaH (pra + nava= praNava). 

SrI Raghavendran has included some additional interpretation and support:

praNamanti iha yam vedAH tasmAt praNavaH ucyate – sanatkumAra – 
vishNu is called praNavaH because all veda-s bow down to Him.-       

raso'ham apsu kaunteya pabhAsmi SaSi SurayayoH    |
praNavaH sarva bhUteshu SabdaH khe paurusham nRshu    ||    (gItA 7.8)

(Lord kRshNa declares to arjuna):  "O arjuna! I am the taste in the waters, the light in the Sun and the Moon, and  the praNava (OmkAra) in all the veda-s, sound in the ether, and manhood in all men". 

SrI vAsishTha gives support from kaThopanishad:

sarve vedA yat-padam Amananti tapAmsi sarvANi ca yad vadanti     |   
yad-icchanto brahmacaryam caranti tat-te padam sa'ngraheNa bravImi yom iti etat ||                                                                                                             (kaTho. 2.15)

"I shall briefly teach you that abode of which all the veda-s speak, of which the AraNyaka-s and the Upanishad-s mention, desiring which brahmacarya is observed.  That is OM". 

The Upanishad continues on: 

etad-dhyevAksharam brahma stad-dhyevAksharam param    |   
etad-dhyevAksharam j~nAtvA yo yadi-icchati tasya tat    ||  (2.16)

etad-Alambanam SreshTham etad-Alambanam param   |           
etad-Alambanam j~nAtvA bloke mahIyate   ||     (2.17)

"This letter is indeed Brahman.  This very letter is the Supreme.  Meditating upon this letter one gets whatever one wants.  This is the best support.  This is the highewst support.  He who knows this is glorified in the world of Brahman". 

SrI vAsishTha gives several other references to the Sruti, where the significance of the praNava mantra is revealed to us:

viSve devAsa iha mAdayanta OM pratishTha |  (yajur. 3.13)-   
OM krato smara  | klive smara   | kRtam smara   | (yajur. 40.15)-  
OM kham brahma   | (yajur. 40.17)-     
Rco akshare parame vyoman asmin devA adhi viSve nisheduH   | (Rg. 1.164.9)

The significance of the praNava mantra is the meditation on the mantra with its meaning in mind, which, at a high level, reveals to us the permanent and eternal relationship between us and the paramAtmA, Lord vishNu.

958. paNaH –

a) He Who trades His role as Master with His devotees, and becomes subservient to them.
b) He Who accepts offerings as the antaryAmi of the different deva-s, and bestows benefits.
c) He is constantly active, creating `forms and names'.
d) He Who bestows benefits according to karma.
e) He Who manages the activities of the Universe.
f) He Who is the object of praise (paN – stutau – to praise).
g) He Who assigns and controls the duties of the different gods.

om paNAya namaH.

SrI vAsishTha indicates the root for the nAma as `paNa – vyavahAre – to bargain, to bet or stake at play', or `paNa – stutau – topraise'. Most interpreters have used the first meaning, and SrI kRshNa datta bhAradvAj and SrI satya sandha tIrtha have used the second meaning.

vyavaharati, vyavahArayati vA viSvam, saH paNaH – He Who transacts the activites of the world, or He because of whom the people of theworld transact their activites, is paNaH. (The term ApaNa means a market or a shop – a place where transactions are conducted). Different interpreters give different anubhavam-s of His `transactions' or dealings with us.

a) SrI BhaTTar draws from the Sesha-SeshI bhAvam, or the Lord-servant relationship that exists between Him and us. While this is thenatural relationship between bhagavAn and us, sometimes He chooses to reverse this relationship, and behaves as if He is the servant of the devotee. This is the `transaction', namely the reversal of the role, that Sri BhaTTar enjoys through this nAma – evam teshAm svAmya-dAsya vyatihAreNa vyavaharati iti paNaH – He behaves as though there is a transaction whereby there has been an interchange of the role of the Master-servant relationship between Him and us (vyatihAreNa means `interchangeably, reciprocally'). He acts as if they are the masters and He is their servant. SrI veLukkuDi kRshNan notes that this is what is reflected in tirumazhiSai AzhvAr being called `tirumazhiSaip pirAN', and Lord ArAvamudhan of tirukkuDantai being called "ArAvamudha AzhvAr".

Lord kRshNa declares that He considers His true devotees as His AtmA – an example of the reversed role.

udArAH sarva evaite j~nAnI tvAtmaiva me matam | AsthitaH sa hi yuktAtmA mAmevAnuttamAm gatim || (gItA7.18)

"….I deem the man of knowledge to be My very self; for he, integrated, is devoted to Me alone as the highest end". BhagavadrAmAnuja's vyAkhyAnam is: "ayam mayA vinA Atma dhAraNa asambhAvanayA mAm eva anuttamam prApyam AsthitaH, ataH tena vinA mama api AtmadhAraNam na sambhavati, tato mama api AtmA hi saH" – This person (the j~naNi who is solely devoted to Him) considers Him to be the highest, and finds it impossible to support himself without Me; so also, I find it impossible to be without him. Thus, verily, He is My self".

b) There is another aspect to the `transaction' that bhagavAn has put in place. This is in the form of our offerings to the different godsthrough yaj~na etc. SrI vAsishTha gives examples from the Sruti where this `transaction' aspect is captured:

yo agnishomA havishA saparyAt daivadrIcA manasA yo ghRtena | tasya vratam rakshatam pAtamamhaso viSe janAya mahi Sarmayacchatam || (Rg. 1.93.8)

"Whosoever honors agni and soma with devout heart, through oil and poured oblation, for him, they (agni, soma etc.) in turn protect hissacrifice, preserve him from distress, and grant to the sacrificer great falicity".

agniH pUrvebhiH RshbhiH Idyo nUtanairuta |
sa devAm eha vakshati || (Rg. 1.1.2)

"Worthy is agni to be praised by the living as by ancient seers; he shall bring hitherword the gods".

agne naya supathA rAye | (Rg. 1.189.1)

"agni, god who knows every sacred duty, by goodly paths lead us to riches".

In the spirit in which SrI vAsishTha has interpreted the nAma, namely, that offerings are made to the deva-s, and the deva-s inreturn, bestow goods on the people, the following Slokam from the gItA lends support to this thought:

DevAn bhAvayatAnena te devA bhAvayantu vaH |
parasparam bhAvayantaH SreyaH param avApsyatha || (gItA 3.11)

ishTAn bhogAn hi vo devA dAsyante yaj~na bhAvitAH |
tair-dattAn apradAyaibhyo yo bhu'ngte stena eva saH || (3.12)

"By this (i.e., through sacrifices), please the gods, and the gods will support you. Thus nourishing one another, may you obtain thehighest good".
(Note that these deva-s are the bodies of the Lord,
and He is their antaryAmi. The offerings to these gods ultimately reach Him only).

"The gods, pleased by the sacrifice, will bestow on you the enjoyments you desire. He who enjoys the bounty of the gods withoutgiving them anything in return, is but a thief".

c) SrI Sa'nkara interprets the nAma as one referring to the `transaction' aspect of bhagavAn creating the different life-forms (according to their karma?). He quotes a mantra from the upanishad in support:

sarvANi rUpANi vicitya dhIraH; nAmAni kRtvA'bhivadan yadAste |
(taitt. 3.12)

"He, the Wise, keeps creating various forms and giving a name to each".

d) SrI Sa'nkara's alternate interpretation is:
puNyANi sarvANi
karmANi paNam sa'ngRhya adhikAribhyaH
tat-phalam prayacchati iti
lakshaNayA paNaH –
He who awards, to those that are entitled, the
fruits of their good karma-s, that they have accumulated".

SrIrAdhAkRshNa SAstri comments that as a merchant gives merchandise that is commensurate with the amount that is paid to him, bhagavAnmeasures out the phalanx commensurate with the karma; thus, the price for happiness is following the path of dharma, and the price for suffering is one's having followed the a-dharmic path.

e) SrI cinmayAnanda explains this guNa of bhagavAn in terms of the functioning of everything in the universe: "PaNaH – The SupremeManager of the Universe. By giving the exact reward for all actions, Lord both orders and justly manages all activities of each individual and directly supervises the interactions between individuals and things constituting this scientifically precise universe".

f) SrI kRshNa datta bhAradvAj uses the root paN – stutau – to praise, and explains the nAma as "paNyate stUyate sattva guNavadbhiH itipaNaH” – He Who is worshipped by those who are endowed with a predominance of the sattva guNa. This is also one of the interpretations provided by SrI satya sandha tIrtha – paNyate janaiH stUyate iti paNaH.

g) SrI raghunAtha tIrtha gives yet another dimension to His `transactions' – paNayati devAn vyahAreshu pravartayati itipaNaH –
He is called paNaH because He assigns the respective duties
to be performed by the different the gods, and controls them in these functions.

-dAsan kRshNamAcAryan