Vedantha Athichoodi – Anandame Iyalbam – Bliss is our nature

Madhura Geetham – Sloka Series 

“Athichoodi” is a type of poetic work (in Tamil) that comprises of a collection of one-line philosophical verses. HH Sri Sri Muralidhara Swamiji has composed a “Vedanta Athichoodi”, a poetic work that speaks of life’s most important principles. We had published the entire Vedanta Athichoodi and its overall meaning as part of our Madhura Geetham Sloka Series, earlier this year. Read that article here

Each of the lines of this Athichoodi are extremely deep and contain a wealth of meaning. In our sloka series over the next few months, we will look at the meaning of each line of this work.

Anandame Iyalbam 

Everybody in this world is in pursuit of happiness. Take for instance a small ant, It finds happiness in a sugar crystal. So it goes in search of sugar crystals. Similarly, a person aspiring for a successful career will experience joy when he finds a job of his choice or when he gets promoted. A person dreaming of being rich is happy when he wins a lottery.

But all this joy is short-lived or sometimes even interspersed with sorrow. So our mind tries to find something else to cling on, and once it does, the mind then moves on to that.

If we introspect on this behavior of the mind for a minute, we realize all this pursuit is in search of everlasting happiness. Mahans describe this state as “ananda” or bliss. This state cannot be explained with words. It can only be experienced.

Sri Ramakrishna Paramahamsa gives the example of a salt doll when describing this supreme state. When a salt doll goes to measure the ocean, it simply merges in it and never comes back. Such is the experience of Mahans who revel in bliss. Sri Swamiji too sings, “Oomai kanda kanavu pol aayitre, Kanna, en nilai”. (“O Kanna!  My state has become like that of a dumb person who has seen a dream”).

So where is this Ananda or “bliss”? Sri Sadasiva Brahmendral says that this supreme state is in the form of Lord Krishna. He sings, “Manasa sancharare… Brahmani… Madasikhipincha alankruta shikure”  (O Mind revel in the Brahman, the Supreme – that is adorned by a peacock feather on its head!)

It may be easier said than done for normal humans like us. So then what is the solution for us? How can normal human beings like us revel in the thoughts of the Lord? The easiest way to do so is to chant the Names of the Lord. The Lord himself has said, “nAham vasAmi vaikunte, na yogi hrudayeravau, mad bhaktah yatra gAyanti, tatra tishtAmi nArada” – (Neither do I reside in Vaikunta nor in the hearts of Yogis, I am present wherever My devotees sing My Names”).

So come my friends, let us chant the Names of the Lord and revel in the ultimate bliss.

“Hare Rama Hare Rama Rama Rama Hare Hare”
“Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Krishna Krishna Hare Hare”

Sowmya Balasubramanian, Dallas TX





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