Slitting ten heads of worst Raavanasura

Madabhushi Sridhar -Tiruppavai 13

Tiruppavai by Godadevi from Tamil



PillaikalEllarumPavai-k-kalam Pukkar


Pullum SilambinakannPodhariKanninaay!


Palli-k-kidatthiyoPaavay Nee Nannaallaal

KallamThavirndhuKalandu-el or Empaavaai

English Translation from By Madabhushi Sridhar

Splitting mouth of crane-Baka demon

Slitting ten heads of worst Raavanasura,

Raama and Krishna worshiped by teens,

Bright Shukra rose as dark Guru sets,

Lotus-bee-eyed lovely lady, See, birds chirping,

Are you yet to dip in serene Yamuna waters?

O beauty, still fast asleep on this divine day?

Give up Raama and get up to join us for Vrata.

Also read: O! dear wake up and Join us for Sri Nomu

Goda: O beauty! Do not think that Krishna will come for your beauty of eyes. We need to go to Him.

Gopika: How can you say that it is early morning?

Goda: See, the bright Shukra is rising, and darkness of Guru is fading out.

Gopika: Any other evidence?

Goda: Birds are chirping and getting ready to go out to fetch food.

            Chirping is a symbol of God-lover’s morning praise of Vishnu. When many are sharing their association with others, do you want to enjoy alone? If you do that it is not fair, but hypocrisy!  I understand that you too need to cool off the pangs of separation from Krishna. Then, you should come with us and bathe in serene cool waters of Yamuna River at this early hour. If you delay, Yamuna water gets heated up.

Also read : “Krishna’s touch energises, enthuses and enlivens”

Bharatha used to suffer body heat because of thinking about absence of Raama and used to rush to Sarayu even at midnight to feel coolness. We are immersed in the thoughts of Krishna, who has split the mouth of Baka demon and Raama, who slit the ten heads of worse Asura Raavana for separating Seetha from Him. Lakshmi never parted her divine abode on the chest of Vishnu. These are good days for us. Our parents are permitting us to meet Krishna for Vrata. We can increase pleasure of meditating upon Krishna, come on let us go together, get up! 

The divine episodes of Raama and Krishna

This song is beautifully laced with the divine episodes of Raama and Krishna, suggesting their oneness. Goda mentions advaita (non-duality) of Seetha and Raama on one hand and Raama and Krishna on the other. Raavana was called bad demon because he separated Vishnu and Lakshmi, Goda uses expression that Ram has slit the ten heads of Raavana. This shows that Raama was highly powerful like Krishna, who with his little finger lifted heavy Govardhanagiri and stayed put for seven days and nights. Vaalmiki narrates that Raama was helped by Agasthya, the ascetic, who gave Aditya Mantra; Indra, offering his chariot with charioteer, Sugreeva and his huge vanara army, and above all, mighty Hanuman. But the strength of Raama was nowhere assessed properly. When Sugreev suspects Vibheeshan, who came to surrender, advises not to entertain him as he might sabotage and destroy our army internally to help his brother Ravan. Raama asks him not to worry, “if I want, I can single-handedly finish Ravan”. But Ram never used those mystic powers but fought like an ordinary man. Whereas Krishna has demonstrated his Leela by lifting a big hill on his little finger, killing Bakaasura etc with wonderful and unbelievable ease. Raama kills the ego of Raavana when he removes his flag, throws out his crown, destroys chariot, kills his charioteer, breaks his arrows and bow, and removes the shield. When Raavan stood helpless hanging his head in shame, Raama permits him to go home, take rest and come back for an ultimate fight. Raavan had to walk all the way through main roads of Lanka while millions are watching to reach his palace. Entire Lanka city comes to know the power of Raama and plight of Ravan. His entire ego gets destroyed and it was just a formality to finish him off next day.

Also read: Naaraayana’ crown is decorated with Tulasi garlands

Ten heads of Raavan

Kama (Lust)

Krodha (Anger)

Moha (Delusion),

Lobha (Greed),

Mada (Pride),

Matsar (Envy),

Manas (The mind),

Buddhi (Intellect),

Chitta (Will)

Ahamkara (The Ego)

In this song, the wisdom is indicated by bright Shukra, and ignorance by setting Guru planet as Shukra planet is on rise in the space. The beautiful eyes also represent the abundant knowledge that helps to see the real nature of Bhagavatottama, disciples of Vishnu. Bathing is nothing but immersing oneself in the divine thoughts of Raama and/or Krishna. Planning to enjoy the meditation about Vishnu alone is considered as hypocrisy, which Goda wants Gopika to get rid of, calling it ‘Kapata’ like Baka – crane, who can be removed by Krishna. 

Also read: Mysterious Madhava, Vaikunthesha –Come

To establish oneness of Raama and Krishna, Goda suggests an episode. When Yashoda was narrating the story of Raama, little Krishna was responding indicating that he was hearing it. She said that when Raama was away, and his brother was searching for Him, Raavana abducted Seetha. Immediately little Krishna was angry and started asking for His bow and arrows from Lakshmana. Yashoda was confused, why Krishna was calling for Lakshmana. 

Story of VipraNaaraayana

In this Paashuram (Song) AalwaarTondaradippodi, or BhaktanghriRenu, SripaadaRenuvu, or VipraNaaraayana, who worshipped God with flowers grown and strewn by him. Aachaarya worship mantra referred to is: “Sri Pundareekshaayanamah”

Also read: Krishna, who tore Keshi’s mouth apart & killed Chaanura- Musthika

Prof. M. Sridhar Acharyulu
Prof. M. Sridhar Acharyulu
Author is Dean, Professor of law at Mahindra University at Hyderabad and former Central Information Commissioner. He published a number books in English and Telugu.


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