Kakkassery Bhattathiri

“Aapathey kim karaneeyam?”
“what needs to be done when faced with danger?”

Kakksasseri Bhattathiri knew why this question was posed to him. Reply came without any hesitation.

“smaraneeyam charanayugalamambaayam”
“remember the lotus feet of Amba – mother godess”

I was really surprised that I couldnt find much information about “Kakkasseri Bhattathiri” who was asked this question. A google search for Kakkassery, Kakkasseri, kakaseri, kakassery and different combinations only gave me spartan information. Luckily I had Aithihyamaala in malayalam, where I could dig up whole story about Kakkasseri bhattathiri. Aithihyamaala holds the treasure of legends and myths associated with the geographical part now known as Kerala.

The story of Kakkasseri Bhattathiri happens around 17th Century north kerala, where Samoothirippadu is the ruler. Every year there used to be a debate contest on Vedas, Shaastras and Puranas at samoothiri’s court. The subjects were divided into 108 topics and debates used to be conducted on each of them. The winners can claim the prize money, and the ensuing fame. All learned namboothiris from all over kerala used to assemble there for the debates. One year a tamil brahmin by name of Uddhanda Shaasthrikal comes to compete. He is renowned for his scorn for namboothiris, to the extent that, as soon as he enters kerala region, he says a couplet.

Palaayadhwam palaayadhwam, re re dushkavi kunjara
vedaanta vanasanchaaree, hyayaathyuddanda kesari.

run and hide run and hide, ye elephants of bad poetry
the roamer of vedanta forest, uddanda the lion is coming

Needless to say, he defeats the namboothiris in the debates and gets all the prizemoney for himself. The king becomes happy with him and appoints him as a chief courtier. This happens consecutively for few more years at which the namboothiris get upset. They think of ways to defeat uddanda shaasthrikal. Unfortunately, they are aware that no one in their midst can do that immediately. During that period they come to know that one namboothiri lady is pregnent. The prominent namboothiris assemble there and do the requsite incantations and prayers to beget a child who will be able to dislodge Uddanda shaastrikal.

In that illam, Bhattathiri is born. When he is three years old, his father dies. As part of the tradition he has to do one year of deeksha. One of the ceremonies for the departed involve making rice balls and invoking the deprated anscestores to feast on it. The belief is that the anscestors will take the form of crows and eat it. Normally the crows come down and eat the rice balls completing their part of the ritual. This is done for over a period of days, where the crows are invoked to have the rice balls. Its said that Bhattathiri used to identify each crow from other and could tell, which crow came the previous day and which didnt. Due to his remarkable power of observation, which became evident with identification crows, his name is kept as Kakkasseri, Kaakka meaning crow in malayalam.

As expected of him he becomes a pundit soon and he excels in all the fields. Legend is that he is trained by none other than the great Uddanda shastri himself. Eventually he is ready for the debate with Uddanda shaastrikal and defeats him in the debate. He is acknowledged by one and all including the King himself. There have been several debates later also between Uddanda shaastrikal and Kakkasseri, but Kakkasseri wins all of them. Most of the anecdotes relating to Kakkasseri are a bit on the vulgar side that even the author of Aithihyamala just mentions that and leaves it there.

During his life, Kakkasseri is unlike the practice of the day, crosses the rigid lines of casteism to the dismay of the namboothiris. He does not hesitate to dine with even the people of lowest caste. Namboothiris dislike the facts, but no one takes up the issue with Kakkasseri, as they know that they cannot win with him by arguments or by debate. Eventually they decide that they must take the advise of Kakkasseri who is the most knowledgeable. They approach him and ask,

“Aapathey kim karaneeyam?”
“what needs to be done when faced with danger?”

Kakksasseri Bhattathiri knew why this question was posed to him. Reply came without any hesitation.

“smaraneeyam charanayugalamambaayam”
“remember the lotus feet of Amba – mother godess”

Just to confirm, the namboothiris ask again,
“talsmaranam kim kurute?”
“what will happen by remembering so?”

Kakkasseri replies,
“brahmaadeenapi cha kinkareekuruthe”
“it will make brahma and other celestial beings your servants.”

The happy namboothiris take leave of him and do bhagavati seva to appease devi – the mother godess, along with incantations and prayers for the removal of danger. On the 41st day of the sacrifice, Kakkasseri comes there and asks for a glass of water, after drinking which he tells the namboothiris that he has become impure and takes leave. After that day Kakkasseri is not seen anywhere and becomes a legend himself.

namboothiri : kerala brahmin
samoothiri : title for the king in north kerala

14 thoughts on “Kakkassery Bhattathiri”

  1. Interesting to read abt kakkassery battathiripad. Do u have any idea abt the places where he lived during his life. Are there any Kakkasseri Illams? What caught my attention is that there are still people with kakkassery as family name.
    neway, grt post.

  2. Yes, He lived in an around north kerala and is associated with several temples in that area. From what I can gather from Aithihyamaala, He was the last member of Kakkasseri illam and he didn’t get married eventhough eligible. There was no other male member in kakkasseri illam after him, and its mentioned that the lineage of the illam ended there.

    I also found several links with people having Kakkasseri as surname, but I doubt it has got anything to do with Kakkasseri bhattathirippadu.

  3. Youe website is informative and excellant
    Article is by M.P. Bhattathiry, Retied Chief Technical Examiner to the Government of Kerela, Radhanivas, Thaliyal, Karmana, Trivandrum, 695 002, Kerela, India, may be published in your website.

    Bhagavad Gita and Management

    by M.P. Bhattathiry

    Mind is very restless, forceful and strong, O Krishna, it is more difficult to control the mind than to control the wind ~ Arjuna to Sri Krishna

    One of the greatest contributions of India to the world is Holy Gita. Arjuna got mentally depressed when he saw his relatives with whom he has to fight. The Bhagavad Gita is preached in the battle field Kurukshetra by Lord Krishna to Arjuna as a counseling to do his duty. It has got all the management tactics to achieve the mental equilibrium.

    Management has become a part of everyday life, be it at home, office, factory, Government, or in any other organization where a group of human beings assemble for a common purpose, management principles come into play through their various facets like management of time, resources, personnel, materials, machinery, finance, planning, priorities, policies and practice.

    Management is a systematic way of doing all activities in any field of human effort. It is about keeping oneself engaged in interactive relationship with other human beings in the course of performing one’s duty. Its task is to make people capable of joint performance, to make their weaknesses irrelevant -so says the Management Guru Peter Drucker.

    It strikes harmony in working -equilibrium in thoughts and actions, goals and achievements, plans and performance, products and markets. It resolves situations of scarcities be they in the physical, technical or human fields through maximum utilization with the minimum available processes to achieve the goal.

    The lack of management will cause disorder, confusion, wastage, delay, destruction and even depression. Managing men, money and material in the best possible way according to circumstances and environment is the most important and essential factor for a successful management. Managing men is supposed have the best tactics. Man is the first syllable in management which speaks volumes on the role and significance of man in a scheme of management practices. From the pre-historic days of aborigines to the present day of robots and computers the ideas of managing available resources have been in existence in some form or other. When the world has become a big global village now, management practices have become more complex and what was once considered a golden rule is now thought to be an anachronism.

    Management guidelines from the Bhagavad Gita

    There is an important distinction between effectiveness and efficiency in managing. Effectiveness is doing the right things and efficiency is doing things right. The general principles of effective management can be applied in every fields the differences being mainly in the application than in principles. Again, effective management is not limited in its application only to business or industrial enterprises but to all organizations where the aim is to reach a given goal through a chief executive or a manager with the help of a group of workers.

    The manager’s functions can be briefly summed up as under:

    . Forming a vision and planning the strategy to realize such vision

    . Cultivating the art of leadership

    . Establishing the institutional excellence and building an innovative organization

    . Developing human resources

    . Team building and teamwork

    . Delegation, motivation, and communication

    . Reviewing performance and taking corrective steps whenever called for

    Thus management is a process in search of excellence to align people and get them committed to work for a common goal to the maximum social benefit. The critical question in every manager’s mind is how to be effective in his job. The answer to this fundamental question is found in the Bhagavad Gita which repeatedly proclaims that ‘you try to manage yourself’. The reason is that unless the manager reaches a level of excellence and effectiveness that sets him apart from the others whom he is managing, he will be merely a face in the crowd and not an achiever.

    In this context the Bhagavad Gita expounded thousands of years ago by the super management Guru Bhagawan Sri Krishna enlightens us on all managerial techniques leading to a harmonious and blissful state of affairs as against conflicts, tensions, lowest efficiency and least productivity, absence of motivation and lack of work culture etc common to most of the Indian enterprises today.

    The modern management concepts like vision, leadership, motivation, excellence in work, achieving goals, meaning of work, attitude towards work, nature of individual, decision making, planning etc., are all discussed in the Bhagavad Gita with a sharp insight and finest analysis to drive through our confused grey matter making it highly eligible to become a part of the modem management syllabus.

    It may be noted that while Western design on management deals with the problems at superficial, material, external and peripheral levels, the ideas contained in the Bhagavad Gita tackle the issues from the grass roots level of human thinking because once the basic thinking of man is improved it will automatically enhance the quality of his actions and their results.

    The management thoughts emanating from the Western countries particularly the U.S.A. are based mostly on the lure for materialism and a perennial thirst for profit irrespective of the quality of the means adopted to achieve that goal. This phenomenon has its source in abundance in the West particularly the U.S.A. management by materialism caught the fancy of all the countries the world over, India being no exception to this trend.

    Our country has been in the forefront in importing those ideas mainly because of its centuries old indoctrination by the colonial rulers which inculcated in us a feeling that anything Western is always good and anything Indian is always inferior. Hence our management schools have sprung up on the foundations of materialistic approach wherein no place of importance was given to a holistic view.

    The result is while huge funds have been invested in building these temples of modem management education, no perceptible changes are visible in the improvement of the quality of life although the standard of living of a few has gone up. The same old struggles in almost all sectors of the economy, criminalization of institutions, more and more social violence, exploitation and such other vices have gone deep in the body politic.

    The reasons for this sorry state of affairs are not far to seek. The western idea of management has placed utmost reliance on the worker (which includes managers also) -to make him more efficient, to increase his productivity. They pay him more so that he may work more, produce more, sell more and will stick to the organization without looking for alternatives. The sole aim of extracting better and more work from him is for improving the bottom-line of the enterprise. Worker has become a hireable commodity, which can be used, replaced and discarded at will.

    The workers have also seen through the game plan of their paymasters who have reduced them to the state of a mercantile product. They changed their attitude to work and started adopting such measures as uncalled for strikes, gheraos, sit-ins, dharnas, go-slows, work-to-rule etc to get maximum benefit for themselves from the organizations without caring the least for the adverse impact that such coercive methods will cause to the society at large.

    Thus we have reached a situation where management and workers have become separate and contradictory entities wherein their approaches are different and interests are conflicting. There is no common goal or understanding which predictably leads to constant suspicion, friction, disillusions and mistrust because of working at cross purposes. The absence of human values and erosion of human touch in the organizational structure resulted in a permanent crisis of confidence.

    The western management thoughts, although acquired prosperity to some for some time, have absolutely failed in their aim to ensure betterment of individual life and social welfare. It has remained by and large a soulless management edifice and an oasis of plenty for a chosen few in the midst of poor quality of life to many. Hence there is an urgent need to have a re-look at the prevalent management discipline on its objectives, scope and content.

    It should be redefined so as to underline the development of the worker as a man, as a human being with all his positive and negative characteristics and not as a mere wage-earner. In this changed perspective, management ceases to be a career-agent but becomes an instrument in the process of national development in all its segments.

    Bhagavad Gita and managerial effectiveness

    Now let us re-examine some of the modern management concepts in the light of the Bhagavad Gita which is a primer of management by values.

    Utilisation of available resources

    The first lesson in the management science is to choose wisely and utilize optimally the scarce resources if one has to succeed in his venture. During the curtain raiser before the Mahabharata War Duryodhana chose Sri Krishna’s large army for his help while Arjuna selected Sri Krishna’s wisdom for his support. This episode gives us a clue as to who is an effective manager.

    Attitude towards work

    Three stone-cutters were engaged in erecting a temple. As usual a H.R.D. consultant asked them what they were doing. The response of the three workers to this seemingly innocent question is illuminating. ‘I am a poor man. I have to maintain my family. I am making a living here,’ said the first stone-cutter with a dejected face. ‘Well, I work because I want to show that I am the best stone-cutter in the country,’ said the second one with a sense of pride. ‘Oh, I want to build the most beautiful temple in the country,’ said the third one with a visionary gleam. Their jobs were identical but their perspectives were different. What Gita tells us is to develop the visionary perspective in the work we do. It tells us to develop a sense of larger vision in one’s work for the common good.

    Work commitment

    The popular verse 2.47 of the Gita advises non- attachment to the fruits or results of actions performed in the course of one’s duty. Dedicated work has to mean ‘work for the sake of work’. If we are always calculating the date of promotion for putting in our efforts, then such work cannot be commitment-oriented causing excellence in the results but it will be promotion-oriented resulting in inevitable disappointments. By tilting the performance towards the anticipated benefits, the quality of performance of the present duty suffers on account of the mental agitations caused by the anxieties of the future. Another reason for non-attachment to results is the fact that workings of the world are not designed to positively respond to our calculations and hence expected fruits may not always be forthcoming.

    So, the Gita tells us not to mortgage the present commitment to an uncertain future. If we are not able to measure up to this height, then surly the fault lies with us and not with the teaching.

    Some people argue that being unattached to the consequences of one’s action would make one un-accountable as accountability is a much touted word these days with the vigilance department sitting on our shoulders. However, we have to understand that the entire second chapter has arisen as a sequel to the temporarily lost sense of accountability on the part of Arjuna in the first chapter of the Gita in performing his swadharma.

    Bhagavad Gita is full of advice on the theory of cause and effect, making the doer responsible for the consequences of his deeds. The Gita, while advising detachment from the avarice of selfish gains by discharging one’s accepted duty, does not absolve anybody of the consequences arising from discharge of his responsibilities.

    This verse is a brilliant guide to the operating Manager for psychological energy conservation and a preventive method against stress and burn-outs in the work situations. Learning managerial stress prevention methods is quite costly now days and if only we understand the Gita we get the required cure free of cost.

    Thus the best means for effective work performance is to become the work itself. Attaining this state of nishkama karma is the right attitude to work because it prevents the ego, the mind from dissipation through speculation on future gains or losses.

    It has been presumed for long that satisfying lower needs of a worker like adequate food, clothing and shelter, recognition, appreciation, status, personality development etc are the key factors in the motivational theory of personnel management.

    It is the common experience that the spirit of grievances from the clerk to the director is identical and only their scales and composition vary. It should have been that once the lower-order needs are more than satisfied, the director should have no problem in optimizing his contribution to the organization. But more often than not, it does not happen like that; the eagle soars high but keeps its eyes firmly fixed on the dead animal below. On the contrary a lowly paid school teacher, a self-employed artisan, ordinary artistes demonstrate higher levels of self- realization despite poor satisfaction of their lower- order needs.

    This situation is explained by the theory of self-transcendence or self-realization propounded in the Gita. Self-transcendence is overcoming insuperable obstacles in one’s path. It involves renouncing egoism, putting others before oneself, team work, dignity, sharing, co-operation, harmony, trust, sacrificing lower needs for higher goals, seeing others in you and yourself in others etc. The portrait of a self-realizing person is that he is a man who aims at his own position and underrates everything else. On the other hand the self-transcenders are the visionaries and innovators. Their resolute efforts enable them to achieve the apparently impossible. They overcome all barriers to reach their goal.

    The work must be done with detachment. This is because it is the ego which spoils the work. If this is not the backbone of the Theory of Motivation which the modern scholars talk about what else is it? I would say that this is not merely a theory of motivation but it is a theory of inspiration.

    The Gita further advises to perform action with loving attention to the Divine which implies redirection of the empirical self away from its egocentric needs, desires, and passions for creating suitable conditions to perform actions in pursuit of excellence. Tagore says working for love is freedom in action which is described as disinterested work in the Gita. It is on the basis of the holistic vision that Indians have developed the work-ethos of life. They found that all work irrespective of its nature have to be directed towards a single purpose that is the manifestation of essential divinity in man by working for the good of all beings -lokasangraha.

    This vision was presented to us in the very first mantra of lsopanishad which says that whatever exists in the Universe is enveloped by God. How shall we enjoy this life then, if all are one? The answer it provides is enjoy and strengthen life by sacrificing your selfishness by not coveting other’s wealth. The same motivation is given by Sri Krishna in the Third Chapter of Gita when He says that ‘He who shares the wealth generated only after serving the people, through work done as a sacrifice for them, is freed from all the sins. On the contrary those who earn wealth only for themselves, eat sins that lead to frustration and failure.

    The disinterested work finds expression in devotion, surrender and equipoise. The former two are psychological while the third is the strong-willed determination to keep the mind free of and above the dualistic pulls of daily experiences. Detached involvement in work is the key to mental equanimity or the state of nirdwanda. This attitude leads to a stage where the worker begins to feel the presence of the Supreme Intelligence guiding the empirical individual intelligence. Such de-personified intelligence is best suited for those who sincerely believe in the supremacy of organizational goals as compared to narrow personal success and achievement.

    Work culture means vigorous and arduous effort in pursuit of a given or chosen task. When Bhagawan Sri Krishna rebukes Arjuna in the strongest words for his unmanliness and imbecility in recoiling from his righteous duty it is nothing but a clarion call for the highest work culture. Poor work culture is the result of tamo guna overtaking one’s mindset. Bhagawan’s stinging rebuke is to bring out the temporarily dormant rajo guna in Arjuna. In Chapter 16 of the Gita Sri Krishna elaborates on two types of Work Ethic viz. daivi sampat or divine work culture and asuri sampat or demonic work culture.

    Daivi work culture – means fearlessness, purity, self-control, sacrifice, straightforwardness, self-denial, calmness, absence of fault-finding, absence of greed, gentleness, modesty, absence of envy and pride.

    Asuri work culture – means egoism, delusion, desire-centric, improper performance, work which is not oriented towards service. It is to be noted that mere work ethic is not enough in as much as a hardened criminal has also a very good work culture. What is needed is a work ethic conditioned by ethics in work.

    It is in this light that the counsel yogah karmasu kausalam should be understood. Kausalam means skill or method or technique of work which is an indispensable component of work ethic. Yogah is defined in the Gita itself as samatvam yogah uchyate meaning unchanging equipoise of mind. Tilak tells us that performing actions with the special device of an equable mind is Yoga. By making the equable mind as the bed-rock of all actions Gita evolved the goal of unification of work ethic with ethics in work, for without ethical process no mind can attain equipoise. Adi Sankara says that the skill in performance of one’s duty consists in maintaining the evenness of mind in success and failure because the calm mind in failure will lead him to deeper introspection and see clearly where the process went wrong so that corrective steps could be taken to avoid such shortcomings in future.

    The principle of reducing our attachment to personal gains from the work done or controlling the aversion to personal losses enunciated in Ch.2 Verse 47 of the Gita is the foolproof prescription for attaining equanimity. The common apprehension about this principle that it will lead to lack of incentive for effort and work, striking at the very root of work ethic, is not valid because the advice is to be judged as relevant to man’s overriding quest for true mental happiness. Thus while the common place theories on motivation lead us to bondage, the Gita theory takes us to freedom and real happiness.

    Work results

    The Gita further explains the theory of non- attachment to the results of work in Ch.18 Verses 13-15 the import of which is as under:

    . If the result of sincere effort is a success, the entire credit should not be appropriated by the doer alone.

    . If the result of sincere effort is a failure, then too the entire blame does not accrue to the doer.

    The former attitude mollifies arrogance and conceit while the latter prevents excessive despondency, de-motivation and self-pity. Thus both these dispositions safeguard the doer against psychological vulnerability which is the cause for the Modem Managers’ companions like Diabetes, High B.P. Ulcers etc.

    Assimilation of the ideas behind 2.47 and 18.13-15 of the Gita leads us to the wider spectrum of lokasamgraha or general welfare. There is also another dimension in the work ethic. If the karm ayoga is blended with bhaktiyoga then the work itself becomes worship, a seva yoga.

    Manager’s mental health

    The ideas mentioned above have a close bearing on the end-state of a manager which is his mental health. Sound mental health is the very goal of any human activity more so management. An expert describes sound mental health as that state of mind which can maintain a calm, positive poise or regain it when unsettled in the midst of all the external vagaries of work life and social existence. Internal constancy and peace are the pre- requisites for a healthy stress-free mind.

    Some of the impediments to sound mental health are:

    . Greed -for power, position, prestige and money

    . Envy-regarding others’ achievements, success, rewards

    . Egotism -about one’s own accomplishments

    . Suspicion, anger and frustration

    . Anguish through comparisons

    The driving forces in today’s rat-race are speed and greed as well as ambition and competition. The natural fallout from these forces is erosion of one’s ethico-moral fiber which supersedes the value system as a means in the entrepreneurial path like tax evasion, undercutting, spreading canards against the competitors, entrepreneurial spying, instigating industrial strife in the business rivals’ establishments etc. Although these practices are taken as normal business hazards for achieving progress, they always end up as a pursuit of mirage -the more the needs the more the disappointments. This phenomenon may be called as yayati-syndrome.

    In Mahabharata we come across a king called Yayati who, in order to revel in the endless enjoyment of flesh exchanged his old age with the youth of his obliging youngest son for a mythical thousand years. However, he lost himself in the pursuit of sensual enjoyments and felt penitent. He came back to his son pleading to take back his youth. This yayati syndrome shows the conflict between externally directed acquisitions, motivations and inner reasoning, emotions and conscience.

    Gita tells us how to get out of this universal phenomenon by prescribing the following capsules.

    Cultivate sound philosophy of life

    Identify with inner core of self-sufficiency

    Get out of the habitual mindset towards the pairs of opposites

    Strive for excellence through work is worship

    Build up an internal integrated reference point to face contrary impulses, and emotions

    Pursue ethico-moral rectitude

    Cultivating this understanding by a manager would lead him to emancipation from falsifying ego-conscious state of confusion and distortion, to a state of pure and free mind i.e. universal, supreme consciousness wherefrom he can prove his effectiveness in discharging whatever duties that have fallen to his domain.

    Bhagawan’s advice is relevant here:

    tasmaat sarveshu kaaleshu mamanusmarah yuddha cha
    Therefore under all circumstances remember Me and then fight (Fight means perform your duties).

    Management needs those Who practise what the preach

    Whatever the excellent and best ones do, the commoners follow, so says Sri Krishna in the Gita. This is the leadership quality prescribed in the Gita. The visionary leader must also be a missionary, extremely practical, intensively dynamic and capable of translating dreams into reality. This dynamism and strength of a true leader flows from an inspired and spontaneous motivation to help others. “I am the strength of those who are devoid of personal desire and attachment. O Arjuna, I am the legitimate desire in those, who are not opposed to righteousness” says Sri Krishna in the 10th Chapter of the Gita.

    The ultimate message of Gita for managers

    The despondent position of Arjuna in the first chapter of the Gita is a typical human situation which may come in the life of all men of action some time or other. Sri Krishna by sheer power of his inspiring words raised the level of Arjuna’s mind from the state of inertia to the state of righteous action, from the state of faithlessness to the state of faith and self-confidence in the ultimate victory of Dharma(ethical action). They are the powerful words of courage of strength, of self confidence, of faith in one’s own infinite power, of the glory, of valor in the life of active people and of the need for intense calmness in the midst of intense action.

    When Arjuna got over his despondency and stood ready to fight, Sri Krishna gave him the gospel for using his spirit of intense action not for his own benefit, not for satisfying his own greed and desire, but for using his action for the good of many, with faith in the ultimate victory of ethics over unethical actions and truth over untruth. Arjuna responds by emphatically declaring that all his delusions were removed and that he is ready to do what is expected of him in the given situation.

    Sri Krishna’s advice with regard to temporary failures in actions is ‘No doer of good ever ends in misery’. Every action should produce results: good action produces good results and evil begets nothing but evil. Therefore always act well and be rewarded.

    And finally the Gita’s consoling message for all men of action is : He who follows My ideal in all walks of life without losing faith in the ideal or never deviating from it, I provide him with all that he needs (Yoga) and protect what he has already got (Kshema).

    In conclusion the purport of this essay is not to suggest discarding of the western model of efficiency, dynamism and striving for excellence but to make these ideals tuned to the India’s holistic attitude of lokasangraha -for the welfare of many, for the good of many. The idea is that these management skills should be India-centric and not America-centric. Swami Vivekananda says a combination of both these approaches will certainly create future leaders of India who will be far superior to any that have ever been in the world.

    Praise for Bhagavad-gita
    (click here to read Bhagavad-gita and Management)

    “No work in all Indian literature is more quoted, because none is better loved, in the West, than the Bhagavad-gita. Translation of such a work demands not only knowledge of Sanskrit, but an inward sympathy with the theme and a verbal artistry. For the poem is a symphony in which God is seen in all things. . . . The Swami does a real service for students by investing the beloved Indian epic with fresh meaning. Whatever our outlook may be, we should all be grateful for the labor that has lead to this illuminating work.”

    Dr. Geddes MacGregor, Emeritus Distinguished Professor of Philosophy University of Southern California

    “The Gita can be seen as the main literary support for the great religious civilization of India, the oldest surviving culture in the world. The present translation and commentary is another manifestation of the permanent living importance of the Gita.”

    Thomas Merton, Theologian

    “I am most impressed with A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada’s scholarly and authoritative edition of Bhagavad-gita. It is a most valuable work for the scholar as well as the layman and is of great utility as a reference book as well as a textbook. I promptly recommend this edition to my students. It is a beautifully done book.”

    Dr. Samuel D. Atkins Professor of Sanskrit, Princeton University

    “As a successor in direct line from Caitanya, the author of Bhagavad-gita As It Is is entitled, according to Indian custom, to the majestic title of His Divine Grace A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. The great interest that his reading of the Bhagavad-gita holds for us is that it offers us an authorized interpretation according to the principles of the Caitanya tradition.”

    Olivier Lacombe Professor of Sanskrit and Indology, Sorbonne University, Paris

    “I have had the opportunity of examining several volumes published by the Bhaktivedanta Book Trust and have found them to be of excellent quality and of great value for use in college classes on Indian religions. This is particularly true of the BBT edition and translation of the Bhagavad-gita.”

    Dr. Frederick B. Underwood Professor of Religion, Columbia University

    “If truth is what works, as Pierce and the pragmatists insist, there must be a kind of truth in the Bhagavad-gita As It Is, since those who follow its teachings display a joyous serenity usually missing in the bleak and strident lives of contemporary people.”

    Dr. Elwin H. Powell Professor of Sociology State University of New York, Buffalo

    “There is little question that this edition is one of the best books available on the Gita and devotion. Prabhupada’s translation is an ideal blend of literal accuracy and religious insight.”

    Dr. Thomas J. Hopkins Professor of Religion, Franklin and Marshall College

    “The Bhagavad-gita, one of the great spiritual texts, is not as yet a common part of our cultural milieu. This is probably less because it is alien per se than because we have lacked just the kind of close interpretative commentary upon it that Swami Bhaktivedanta has here provided, a commentary written from not only a scholar’s but a practitioner’s, a dedicated lifelong devotee’s point of view.”

    Denise Levertov, Poet

    “The increasing numbers of Western readers interested in classical Vedic thought have been done a service by Swami Bhaktivedanta. By bringing us a new and living interpretation of a text already known to many, he has increased our understanding manyfold.”

    Dr. Edward C Dimock, Jr. Department of South Asian Languages and Civilization University of Chicago

    “The scholarly world is again indebted to A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. Although Bhagavad-gita has been translated many times, Prabhupada adds a translation of singular importance with his commentary.”

    Dr. J. Stillson Judah, Professor of the History of Religions and Director of Libraries Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley, California

    “Srila Prabhupada’s edition thus fills a sensitive gap in France, where many hope to become familiar with traditional Indian thought, beyond the commercial East-West hodgepodge that has arisen since the time Europeans first penetrated India.
    “Whether the reader be an adept of Indian spiritualism or not, a reading of the Bhagavad-gita As It Is will be extremely profitable. For many this will be the first contact with the true India, the ancient India, the eternal India.”

    Francois Chenique, Professor of Religious Sciences Institute of Political Studies, Paris, France

    “As a native of India now living in the West, it has given me much grief to see so many of my fellow countrymen coming to the West in the role of gurus and spiritual leaders. For this reason, I am very excited to see the publication of Bhagavad-gita As It Is by Sri A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada. It will help to stop the terrible cheating of false and unauthorized ‘gurus’ and ‘yogis’ and will give an opportunity to all people to understand the actual meaning of Oriental culture.”

    Dr. Kailash Vajpeye, Director of Indian Studies Center for Oriental Studies, The University of Mexico

    “It is a deeply felt, powerfully conceived and beautifully explained work. I don’t know whether to praise more this translation of the Bhagavad-gita, its daring method of explanation, or the endless fertility of its ideas. I have never seen any other work on the Gita with such an important voice and style. . . . It will occupy a significant place in the intellectual and ethical life of modern man for a long time to come.”

    Dr. Shaligram Shukla Professor of Linguistics, Georgetown University

    “I can say that in the Bhagavad-gita As It Is I have found explanations and answers to questions I had always posed regarding the interpretations of this sacred work, whose spiritual discipline I greatly admire. If the aesceticism and ideal of the apostles which form the message of the Bhagavad-gita As It Is were more widespread and more respected, the world in which we live would be transformed into a better, more fraternal place.”

    Dr. Paul Lesourd, Author Professeur Honoraire, Catholic University of Paris

    “When I read the Bhagavad-Gita and reflect about how God created this universe everything else seems so superfluous.”

    Albert Einstein

    “When doubts haunt me, when disappointments stare me in the face, and I see not one ray of hope on the horizon, I turn to Bhagavad-gita and find a verse to comfort me; and I immediately begin to smile in the midst of overwhelming sorrow. Those who meditate on the Gita will derive fresh joy and new meanings from it every day.”

    Mahatma Gandhi

    “In the morning I bathe my intellect in the stupendous and cosmogonal philosophy of the Bhagavad-gita, in comparison with which our modern world and its literature seem puny and trivial.”

    Henry David Thoreau

    “The Bhagavad-Gita has a profound influence on the spirit of mankind by its devotion to God which is manifested by actions.”

    Dr. Albert Schweitzer

    “The Bhagavad-Gita is a true scripture of the human race a living creation rather than a book, with a new message for every age and a new meaning for every civilization.”

    Sri Aurobindo

    “The idea that man is like unto an inverted tree seems to have been current in by gone ages. The link with Vedic conceptions is provided by Plato in his Timaeus in which it states ‘behold we are not an earthly but a heavenly plant.’ This correlation can be discerned by what Krishna expresses in chapter 15 of Bhagavad-Gita.”

    Carl Jung

    “The Bhagavad-Gita deals essentially with the spiritual foundation of human existence. It is a call of action to meet the obligations and duties of life; yet keeping in view the spiritual nature and grander purpose of the universe.”

    Prime Minister Nehru

    “The marvel of the Bhagavad-Gita is its truly beautiful revelation of life’s wisdom which enables philosophy to blossom into religion.”

    Herman Hesse

    “I owed a magnificent day to the Bhagavad-gita. It was the first of books; it was as if an empire spoke to us, nothing small or unworthy, but large, serene, consistent, the voice of an old intelligence which in another age and climate had pondered and thus disposed of the same questions which exercise us.”

    Ralph Waldo Emerson

    “In order to approach a creation as sublime as the Bhagavad-Gita with full understanding it is necessary to attune our soul to it.”

    Rudolph Steiner

    “From a clear knowledge of the Bhagavad-Gita all the goals of human existence become fulfilled. Bhagavad-Gita is the manifest quintessence of all the teachings of the Vedic scriptures.”

    Adi Shankara

    “The Bhagavad-Gita is the most systematic statement of spiritual evolution of endowing value to mankind. It is one of the most clear and comprehensive summaries of perennial philosophy ever revealed; hence its enduring value is subject not only to India but to all of humanity.”

    Aldous Huxley

    “The Bhagavad-Gita was spoken by Lord Krishna to reveal the science of devotion to God which is the essence of all spiritual knowledge. The Supreme Lord Krishna’s primary purpose for descending and incarnating is relieve the world of any demoniac and negative, undesirable influences that are opposed to spiritual development, yet simultaneously it is His incomparable intention to be perpetually within reach of all humanity.”


    The Bhagavad-Gita is not seperate from the Vaishnava philosophy and the Srimad Bhagavatam fully reveals the true import of this doctrine which is transmigation of the soul. On perusal of the first chapter of Bhagavad-Gita one may think that they are advised to engage in warfare. When the second chapter has been read it can be clearly understood that knowledge and the soul is the ultimate goal to be attained. On studying the third chapter it is apparent that acts of righteousness are also of high priority. If we continue and patiently take the time to complete the Bhagavad-Gita and try to ascertain the truth of its closing chapter we can see that the ultimate conclusion is to relinquish all the conceptualized ideas of religion which we possess and fully surrender directly unto the Supreme Lord.

    Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati

    “The Mahabharata has all the essential ingredients necessary to evolve and protect humanity and that within it the Bhagavad-Gita is the epitome of the Mahabharata just as ghee is the essence of milk and pollen is the essence of flowers.”


  4. OM

    Melpathur Narayana Bhattatiri

    Although volumes can be written about this devotee-poet, who will be remembered forever for his contribution of composing this great devotional work, only a very short historical background is given here for the sake of brevity.

    The author, Melpathur Narayana Bhattatiri, was an erudite scholar in Sanskrit, well-versed in the choice of words which make the work highly rhythmic and flowing, with a very high literary value, comparable to any of the compositions of classical Sanskrit poets.

    Bhattatiri has authored many works in Sanskrit, major and minor, totalling about forty, which can be classified into different groups, viz., sastric or technical, Prabandhas or narratives, Prasastis or panegyrics and devotional hymns or Stotras. In the first category, fall the Prakriya-sarvasva, Apaniniya-pramana and Dhatu-kavya, which are books on grammar. Mana-meyodaya is a philosophical work on Purva-mimamsa. Among his narrative writings, the Ramayanam, Maha-bharatam and Bhagavatam written in Champu style (prose and poetry mixed) are renowned. Some of the Prasastis devoted to some rulers (of the small principalities which comprise the present Kerala), are said to have been written much against his own wishes.

    Among the devotional hymns, Srimad Narayaneeyam is the major work. The devotional fervour of this work is extremely high and the exposition of the Vedanta philosophy, especially in the last ten chapters, has no comparison. The ruling sentiment is Bhakti or devotion to the Lord, which serves as the means for attaining the four Purusharthas or values of life, viz. Dharma (righteousness), Artha (worldly prosperity), Kama (desire for sensual enjoyments) and last, but not the least, Moksha (emancipation from worldly ties). Totally devoted to the path of devotion and mentally committed to the task of inspiring the readers over and above the immediate need of curing himself of his ailment, he took upon himself the stupendous task of epitomizing Srimad Bhagavata Mahapuranam describing the sportive incarnations of the Lord, ending up every chapter with a fervent appeal for help.

  5. The Greatness of Guruvayoor

    The expression ?Hantha! Bhagyam Jananaam!?, comprising the last words of the opening sloka of this great work, Srimad Narayaneeyam, has become the watch-word of Guruvayoor, because devotees of Guruvayoorappan believe that Narayaneeyam, known as the ?Gospel of Guruvayoor? is identical with the Lord. They consider themselves extremely fortunate and blessed even to have been able to have a Darsanam of the Lord, who is the same as Brahman, the Supreme Consciousness. One can find the above-cited words inscribed right at the entrance of the shrine.

    The image of the Lord at Guruvayoor, believed to be of divine origin, is said to have been worshipped by Vasudeva and then by Lord Krishna Himself at Dwaraka. Before the divine ascent of Lord Krishna, He had instructed Uddhava, His devotee and minister, that this image would come floating when Dwaraka would be engulfed by the sea, after His departure. At his behest, Guru (Brihaspati, the Deva-guru), along with Vayu (the Wind-god), looked for a suitable spot which was located by Parasurama, and as instructed by Lord Siva, installed the same at the present location, which later came to be known as ?GURU-VAYU-OOR?, meaning the place of Guru and Vayu, the sanskritised name being ?GURU-PAVANA-PURAM?. As the Divine ascent was at the beginning of Kali-yuga, the temple is believed to be about 5,100 years old. As the image had its origin in Vaikuntam, the divine abode of Lord Vishnu, devotees consider this shrine as Vaikuntam on earth, or Bhooloka-Vaikuntam.

  6. 1. Please know that God is within you.

    2 God is infinite love and peace.

    3. God is the eternal light and joy that shine the whole universe.

    4. People should rise to the occasion to do their duty.

    5. People should reach the height and glory of God?s supreme presence.

    6. The feeling that I and mine should be given up and see every thing equal.

    7. Have an elevated thinking.

    8. Remember God in the beginning, in the middle, and in the end for all ventures.

    9. Be humble, pure, simple, and innocent and God is yours.

    10. God in the form of love reside in everybody?s heart and be conscious of this at all times. Then your thoughts, words and actions will be of love.

    11. The light of God will always illuminate the heart and light only can be seen inside and outside.

    12. Come out of the darkness of ignorance enter into the light of knowledge then only we can feel the presence of God the light of all lights.

    13. Let all our actions be as per the directions of God within us.

    14. Ego should be avoided to allow everything to be done at the will of God.

    15. God is the only reality, truth, and live for God alone.

    16. Detachment to perishable things and attachment to only God will give peace of mind.

    17. Desire for material things is the cause for all sorrows.

    18. Taking more than one?s requirement will ultimately give grief.

    19. Acquire knowledge which can?t be stolen or lost.

    20. Enjoy always the sunshine of God?s splendor and glory.

    21. Remember always God and live in tune with him.

    22. Be happy and calm in all situations.

    23. See, hear, and speak only good things,

    24. Serve the needy and sick wholeheartedly.

    25. Total surrender to God will give peace of mind.

    26. Remember always the God?s grace for all achievements.

    27. Avoid self praise and say only good things about others.

    28. See everybody with respect irrespective of caste color and creed.

    29. Anger, lust and ego are the only enemies.

    30. Purify the heart for the God to sit in.

    31. There is no greater virtue than humility, no vice greater than pride.

    32. Be sincere in all works, work is worship.

    33. Make God your friend, philosopher and guide.

    34. Don?t get dejected in failure and fall, God?s grace will be upon us.

    35. Always you are one with God and different from Him.

    36. Like a flower give always the perfume of love and joy.

    37. Pray for the awareness that always you may be in Him and He in you.

    38. Remember always that everything in the Universe belongs to God, nothing is ours.

    39. We have got this birth at the will of God and we are on our way to Him.

    40. Know that our goal is to rest in peace with God.

    41. Always remember that we are the immortal spirit.

    42. Chanting the name of God will save us from fear, doubt and anxiety.

    43. Supreme knowledge is ultimate devotion to God.

    44. What ever we do will be seen by the God.

    45. Overeating, earning money by unlawful means, desire for others property are our weakness.

    46 .We are all safe in the hands o god.

    47. God manifesting Himself as a person; the object of worship of the bhaktas. By worshipping God as a person, devotees are able to assume human-like relationships with God, for example:

    God as parent, devotee as child.
    God as Lord, devotee as servant.

    It is also much easier for many people to develop love toward God when He is regarded as a person. Such love is capable of triggering a spiritual awakening once it is a pure, selfless love.

    48. In this kaliyuga Chant always the name of God.

    49. God can assume any form to protect the devotees.

    50. To serve the devotees is equal to serve the God.

    51.Awake, arise and do your duty justifiably . God will be always with you.

    See Also:

    Vedas: Different Paths to Experience the Supreme
    All the Vedas (Hindu sacred literature) provide the same knowledge to experience the Supreme through different paths. The author looks at the theme of several vedas.

    Holy Gita
    Bhagavad Gita, is the most important and cream of all scriptural texts for Sanadhana Dharma. According to the Gita, true religion is that which is inherent in the soul. It cannot be changed, and it is universally the same for all living entities. The external faiths are material reflections of the inherent spiritual quality of the soul.

    Ancient Power of Sanskrit Mantra and Ceremony
    The creative principle of the universe is called Brahma in Sanskrit. Brahma, who is depicted as emerging from the navel lotus of Narayana, is a metaphor for all of creation. Brahma creates, operates in the form of this universe for trillions of years, then dissolves back into Narayana. Narayana, however, is neither created nor destroyed. Later, another Brahma appears to begin the process again.

  7. Thanks for the appreciation Mr.Bhattathiri. But please avoid posting a long article in the comments section, afterall its just comments section.

    Articles such as this could be published at a site or even better your own blog, where you can get an audience to discuss it or debate it with you. Maybe you can create and account with blogger and publish them there.

    To be honest, I havent read the complete comments, as I still am not a spiritual person. Thanks for visiting.

  8. Subject: Bhopal Gas Tragedy and Agnihotra medicine
    From: bhattathiri | All bhattathiri’s Messages |

    The tragic incident occurred on the night of December 3, 1984 when the poisonous MIC gas leaked from Union Carbide factory at Bhopal. Hundreds of people died and thousands were hospitalized but there were two families – those of Shri Sohan Lal S Khushwaha and Shri M.L. Rathore, living about one mile away from the plant who came out unscathed. These families were regularly performing agnihotra (havan). In these families nobody died, nobody was even hospitalized despite being present in the area worst affected by the leakage of the toxic gas. This observation implies that agnihotra is a proven antidote to pollution. (English Daily-“The Hindu’ of 4-5-85; news item under the heading ‘Vedic Way to Beat Pollution’.)
    Union Carbide Factory in West Weginia in US came to know this and they donated lakhs of dollars to do reserch for this “Homa effect” in West Werginia University
    In Germany also studies are going on.
    In the recent years, the established healing therapies have begun to recognize the role of psychology in prevention and cure of diseases of different kinds. As the atmosphere, pr³ña and mind are interlinked; the individuals naturally experience relaxation, peace, quietening of the mind, loss of worries and stress in the yajóa atmosphere [5-6]. The increase in the level of pr³ña (vital energy) in the atmosphere when a yajóa is performed – was also recorded with the help of Kirilian photographs of human hands before and after yajóa in the experiments conducted by Dr. Matthias Ferbinger of Germany [5].
    The atmosphere surrounding the place where a yajóa (or agnihotra) is being performed and the ash produced in the kuñÃa are suffused with energetic currents and soothing and uplifting ambience.

    Further scientific research and large scale experiments on the potentials of yagyopathy will help make it a distinct, alternative therapy of far-reaching benefits to humanity at large and open up newer directions for constructive integration of the modern and the ancient sciences

  9. Your website is eyecatching, beautiful, informative and excellent.
    Let us pray for the victims of September 11th attack.

    Article by M.P. Bhattathiri, Retired Chief Technical Examiner , Govt. of Kerala, it may be published in your website and magazine after editing if necessary.

    September 11th.
    Come september, many disasters are happening around the world.. Katrina storm in US, earthquake in Japan,air accidents in many countries, flood in India and so on.
    In this context let us remember the victims of the 9/11 terrorist attack in NewYorkThis day has changed the history of the world .People have seen cruelty in the original form and some have not even recovered from the great mental depression. Ne sweetenings words can satisfy those affected. It appears that NewYork city is stiil not fully recoveerd from that shock. Billions of dollars have been lost and business and economy is affected heavily.

    Let us express our feelings towards the sufferers of the tragedy on September 11, 2001, at New York and share with all some of the feelings of millions of educated on “Terrorism” and about the difference it has made in our lives, individual and collective.

    “Terrorism is the the calculated use of violence (or threat of violence) against civilians in order to attain goals that are political or religious or ideological in nature; this is done through intimindation or coercion or instilling fear among civilians creating anarchy and pandemonium. The targets of terrorist acts can be government officials, military personnel, people serving the interests of governments, or civilians and women and children are the most affected one. Acts of terror against military targets tend to blend into a strategy of guerrilla warfare. According to one view, one person’s terrorist is another person’s freedom fighter. Random violence against civilians (noncombatants) is the type of action.”

    Let us also recollect the other great historical event that occurred on the soil of United states Of America a superpower on the same date viz. 11th September. Coincidently the appearance of Swami Vivekananda on the platform of the Parliament of Religions of Columbian Exposition, held in Chicago is also on September 11th in 1893 and preached the importance of love among all religions. Strangely the great Swami, in his very first lecture, spoke mainly on tolerance and Universal Acceptance. He said, `we believe not only in Universal tolerance but we accept all religions as true’. He quoted from a famous hymn to God Siva written by Pushpadanta several centuries ago, which stated, `As the different streams having their sources in different places all mingle their water in to the sea, so, O Lord, the different paths which men take through different tendencies, various though they appear, crooked or straight, all lead to Thee’.

    He then concluded with the following wonderful words, which appear most appropriate to be quoted before: `Sectarianism, bigotry, and its horrible descendent, fanaticism have long possessed this beautiful earth. They have filled the earth with violence, drenched it often and often with human blood, destroyed civilization and sent whole nations to despair Ö let us sincerely hope that the actions taken during the last one year may be the death knell of all fanaticism, of all persecutions with the weapon or with the pen and of all uncharitable feelings between persons wending their way to the same goal’

    Though we are yet to find out what all ideas worked behind that tragedy of September 11, 2001, we can be sure that an extreme fanatic ideology that considered all other ideologies as worth nothing and itself as the only worth living ideology was behind the dastardly act. The further events have revealed that this fanatic ideology was inculcated into receptive minds of the youth who become the instruments of terror that revealed itself at the W.T.O. and other important places,in America. Fanaticism drives away all reason and thus persons with fanatic ideas act like robots, rather, like animals. Fanaticism is the fuel by which the machine of terrorism works.

    Fanaticism has been there in human life whenever people have been deprived of their spiritual food. What is this spiritual food? The disciplines or values of life that lead persons to realize their oneness with the Universe and with God and thus come to love humanity and God resulting into peace evrywhere.

    The Vedas, the oldest available scriptures to humanity,The Holy Bible, The Holy Koran and all other religious scriptures say that all this creation is God alone and should love each other -. It implies that this Divinity is in every creature as its fundamental, inalienable nature. That is why Swami Vivekananda proclaimed the `Divinity of man’ in his many lectures in America. He thundered, `Ye, the divinities on earth, sinners? It is a libel to call a man so’.

    When this idea of the Divinity of man is widely taught, not only in our schools and colleges but also in all churches, mosques, pagodas, Tabenacles and Temples where most innocent minds throng in millions, then only people will get their highest respect and regard, irrespective of their gender, wealth, intelligence, power etc. Then only the very idea of harming anyone, be it for any cause, would appear abhorring. Then alone can violence be radically uprooted from society.

    In spite of the utmost technical and science education that people are getting now a days, the love and respect for fellowmen as a brother in God is lacking. This is what has made our scientists and politicians prepare nuclear weapons, biological bombs, ultimately killing all the fellow-feelings in the hearts of people. Is there any wonder if such people indulge in wholesale destruction of their fellow-beings as in the `program of Hitler’ or `the tragedy of September 11 of 2001′ in New York? This is the mental impact that Terrorism of September 11 has made on the thinking men like us.

    The difference it has made in our life is that it has awakened a sense of urgency to educate people against falling a prey to the `brain-washing’ ideologies masked under various garbs . In killing innocents, there can be no religion except Demon’s dance.

    Men who join such fanatic’s training camps are generally the poor and the deprived. They are `brainwashed’ to think that by killing others not of their fold, will confer on them the gift of `Heaven and its unending joys’ as a reward for their religious and pious act!

    This is made possible in general where people don’t have basic freedoms of democratic rule, but are lead by nose as it were by selfish politicians. We have to stop all help to such non-democracies and pseudo-democracies. We have to push on with meaningful education supplemented with scientific skills and spiritual `values’ that will make our men and women not only efficient but also good. Goodness can be summarized as truthfulness, a feeling of brotherhood of whole humanity, a sympathy to serve the needy and a firm conviction that humanity is one Divine family and to hurt anyone would mean bringing unhappiness on ourselves. Let us make a simple prayer thus: `Oh God, please bless us all with the will to spread these ideas of love and brotherhood to all our brothers from wherever irrespective of cast, creed and religion.

    Let all the nations, organisations, cultural societies join together to spread the worst after effect of terrorism.


  10. i am the member of kakkasserry .the sun of ali vydear.his father is kunjumarakkar .he is coming from kakkasserry namboothirimana .i will study his past ,and kakkasserymana .pls contact;09947400680 , or my id

  11. Bhattathiri says in Narayaneeyam Lord Krishna starts listing the manifestations of divinity, by pointing out the prominent ones as there is no limit for them and hence an exhaustive enumeration is not possible. The Lord is in everything as its inner self, according to Visishtadvaita and Brahman is identical with the inner self in advaita.Hence the real entity is Brahman itself and hence all means only Brahman in essence.Here Krishna explains the imminence of the Supreme Self by pointing out the prominent among all the entities and says that He is that.

    Of the twelve Adhithyas He is Vishnu, the paramount.Of the luminous bodies he is the Sun. He is Marici among the maruts and among the stars He is the Moon.He is the Samaveda among the four vedas, Indra among devas,of the indhriyas He is the mind ( which is also couned as one of the indhriyas) and He is the consciousness in all living beilngs.

    He is Sankara among the eleven Rudras and among the yakshas and rakshasas He is Kubera, the head of yakshas.Of the eight vasus He is Agni and Meru among the mountains.Of all the preceptors He is Brhaspathi, the devaguru.He is Skandha among the commanders and the ocean among the reservoirs of water.

    He is Brgu among the maharshis and of the speech He is praNava.He is the japayajna of all the sacrifices and among immovable objects He is Himalayas . Among the celestial seers He is Narada and is the banyan tree among all the trees.He is Chitrratha, their king, among the Gandharvas and Kapila among the siddhas.

    He is the Vajra among the weapons and the Kamadheu among cows.He is the god of love who causes progeny, Vasuki among serpents and Sesha among the nAgas. (Sarpa or serpents are those which have only one head while the nAgas are those with multiple heads.)

    He is Prahladha among asuras and death among the reckoners.Of beasts he is the lion and Garuda among birds.Among the things that move He is the wind ( because wind is the swiftest moving) and Rama among the armed..Of the fish He is the shark and Ganges among the rivers.

    The Lord is the beginning, end and the middle of all the created beings and the science of Self among the sciences.He is the reasoning power behind al arguments.

    He is the akAra of letters and dvandvasamasa of all the compounds.The akAra has been termed as speech in the upanishads.’akAro vai sarvA vAk.'( aithreya.3.2. 3) and the dvandva is mentioned because in that kind of compound both the words joined are of equal importance.He is the imperishable Time and the creator with face everywhere.( meaning the four faced Brahma)

    He is the death that carries away everything and the origin of all that is born.Among women He is the fame,prosperity, speech,memory, intelligence, endurance and forgiveness. Fame means good reputation and prosperity of a house depends on the woman and how she is treated.The other qualities are those which give glory to a woman.

    Of the saman hymns he is the brhtsaman , the most important one.Similary Gayathri among the chandhas is the Lord .He is the month of Margasira and the spring among the seasons.The month of margasirais important as it is supposed to be the dawn of the devas and hence is sacred on earth. Vasantharthu, spring, is the most beautiful and pleasant to all.

    Of the fraudulent He is the gambling.It means that the element of chance that is present in gambling is the will of the Lord.He is the brilliance of the brilliant.He is the victory and effort and great mindedness among the good and generous.

    He is Vasudevakrishna among the yadhavas and Arjuna among the pandavas.He is Vyasa among the sages and Sukra among the intuitive.He is the punishment of those who punish and policy of those who wish to win.He is the silence of the secrets and the wisdom of the wise.

    Thus Krishna concludes that he is the seed of all beings and nothing movable or immovable can exist without Him. He tells Arjuna that there is no end to His divine manifestations and what has been told so far is only a brief account.Whatever possesses power, splendour or energy should be viewed as a fragment of the power of the Lord. Krishna clinches the issue by saying that He is sustaining the whole universe with a fragment of His power, ‘VishtabhyAham idham krthsnam EkAmSEna sTHithO jagath.’

  12. I hail from Kakkassery which is about 6 kms from Guruvayur. Kakkassery Bhattathiripad’s mana is said to have been situated near one Mr. Unnipanikar’s present house. Though he was a scholar, still many people in Kakkasery are not aware of this.

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