Vishnu Sahasranamam. Meanings: based upon the commentary of Shankaracharya. Sanskrit script courtesy: Shri. Acharya sankara reached the feet of his Guru, Sri Govindapaachaarya, and on the bank of Narmada, the Nambootiri-boy from kaaladi got initiated into the secrets of the Mahaavaakyas. At the end of his short but intense study, sankara, the inspired missionary, wanting to fulfill his glorious work, craved from the blessings of his teacher.

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Vishnu Sahasranamam. Meanings: based upon the commentary of Shankaracharya. Sanskrit script courtesy: Shri. Acharya sankara reached the feet of his Guru, Sri Govindapaachaarya, and on the bank of Narmada, the Nambootiri-boy from kaaladi got initiated into the secrets of the Mahaavaakyas. At the end of his short but intense study, sankara, the inspired missionary, wanting to fulfill his glorious work, craved from the blessings of his teacher.

Govindapa Acharya tested sankara by ordering him to write an exhaustive commentary Bhaashya upon the Vishnu Sahasranaama. He accomplished his great task and the very first work of the Upanishadic commentator, sankara, the greatst Hindu missionary of the 7 th century, thus came to see the light of the day.

Govindaacharya, satisfied with the proficiency of the student blessed him and set him on the road of service and action.

Earning the grace of the teacher and the blessings of the Lord Vishnu, Sri sankara inaugurated an incomparable revival movement of the decadent culture of the 7 th century Hinduism.

The Vishnu Sahasranaama was composed by Sri Veda Vyaasa , the author of the Puraanas, and we meet this great chant in his classical work, the Mahaabaarata, Prince Yudhisthira, the eldest of the pandavas, at the end of the war approached Bheeshma Pitaamaha, when the mighty grandsire of the Kuru family was lying on the bed of arrows, unconquered and in conquerable, awaiting the scared hour of his departure to the feet of the lord.

Yudhishthira, the righteous, asked six questions, Bheeshma, the constant devotee of Krishna, the gigantic Man of Action, calmly answered them all. For the eradication of all obstructions, I meditate " dhyayeth " on Vishnu, who is wearing " dharam " a white " shukla " cloth " ambara " , who is of the color " varnam " of the moon " sashi " , who has four " chatur " arms " bhujam " , and who has a placid expression " prasanna " on His face " vadanam ".

Vaisampayana, the narrator to Dhritrastra says: Yudhishthira, as a righteous man " dharamana " of spiritual inclination, with the mortal integrity " paavanaani " of a careful mortal, asks " bhaashatha " Bhishma " shaantanavam " quite an interesting set of questions which are typical queries which the heart of seekers will always ask.

Who " kim " is the greatest " ekam " Lord " daivatam " in the world " loke "? Who is the one " ekam " refuge " paraayanam " for all? By glorifying " sthuvantah " whom " kam " can man " manavah " reach the Auspiciousness " shubam " peace and prosperity?

What " ko " is, in thy opinion, the Greatest Dharma? The supreme " uttamam " Purusha, who is ever up and working for the welfare of all, the Lord " prabhum " of the world " jagat " the endless " anantam " — Sri Maha Vishnu.

The greatest Dharma is the one Vishnu, who has neither a beginning Aadi nor an end Nidhanam , the supreme Lord " maheshwaram " of the world. He who is " yo " the very sanctity " pavitram " that sanctifies all sacred things " pavitraanaam " ; he who is most auspicious " mangalam " ; he who is the god " devataa " of gods " daivatam " ; he who is the eternal " avyayah " father " pitaa " of all creatures " bhootaanaam " is the one god — VISHNU.

Yudhistirau Uvaachaa:. Question 1. Kim ekam daivatam loke? Answer 1. Question 2. Kim vaapyekam paraayanam? Answer 2. Paramam yo mahat-tejah Paramam yo mahat-tapah Paramam yo mahat-brahma Paramam yah paraayanam. Question 3. Answer 3.

The supreme " uttamam " Purusha, who is ever up and dong for the welfare of all, the Lord " prabhum " of the world " jagat " the endless " anantam " — Sri Maha Vishnu. Question 4. Answer 4. Question 5. Question 6. Both questions are answered here: - the greatest Dharma is the one Vishnu, who has neither a beginning Aadi nor an end Nidhanam , the supreme Lord " maheshwaram " of the world. Extra Comments: The Supreme cannot be defined and since He is the very substratum of all qualities, He cannot be denominated by any name, or indicated by any term, or defined in any language, or ever expressed, even vaguely, in any literary form.

He is the very illumining Principle of Consciousness that illuminates all experiences. And yet He has many manifestations and, therefore, He can have infinite names in terms of His manifestations. Definitions should directly describe the thing defined, and here we have a thousand indirect definitions with which the Real, the Infinite is being indicated in terms of the unreal and the finite. They were collected and strung together into a joyous Hymn to Vishnu, a garland of devotion and reverence, by the poet-seer Vyaasa.

Since each of them is thus an indicative definition of the unknown in terms of the known, each term here is believed to rocket-us up into the realms of the divine experience, only when we have lifted our minds towards it through contemplation.

More commentary: In the Kali-Santarana Upanishad, which is one of the minor Upanishads, we find the great devotee Naarada approaching Brahmaaji to enquire what is the way out for man to evolve in these hard days of extrovertedness, which is quite natural and unavoidable in the Iron-age Kaliyuga.

So all living creatures are fit for this easy path. In the Trikutaachala lake, the elephant that was caught by the crocodile is described as having been saved by the Lord Gajendra Moksha.

The story of Jadabharata is yet another example. Sankara in his commentary describes here Japa as comprehensive of all the three types. Vishnu Sahasranaama can be employed in performing Japa of all these three kinds.

Exactly 90 names have been repeated in this Great Hymn; and of them, 74 are repeated twice, 14 are repeated thrice, and again 2 of them are found to have been repeated four times. Sometimes, the terms are repeated as such Vishnu- Vishnu, Siva-Siva etc. These need not be considered as a defect, since this Hymn is a chant of His Glory.

In a chant of glory stuti repetitions are acceptable-it is but a style of the emotional heart to repeat its declarations of love. The extra 31 Names are to be considered each as an adjective qualifying Viseshana the immediately following noun. When one makes Archanaa to the Lord the correct dative case is to be used. There are 20 double-names in the first Names and 11 double-names in the second half of the chant. There is one indeclinable Avyaya word used, and it th should be used in the dative for Archanaa as Sanaat Namah; so too the th Name in the chant, being a plural noun, should be used in Archanaa as Sadbhyo Namah.

It will also be found, as we study the significances of these Divine names, that Vyaasa has employed sometimes masculine gender, on other occasions feminine gender and some other times even neuter gender. Wherever it is masculine. Glory or power devataa that is manifest everywhere, and when the term is in neuter gender, it means Pure Brahman, the infinite Reality.

This Archanaa is generally performed by devotees daily; if this is not convenient they perform this worship at least on their own birth-days, on eclipse days and on the day on which the Sun moves from one zodiac to another the Samkraanti-day. This performance has been prescribed by the Sastra for warding off troubles arising from the position of planets, anger of the rulers, incurable diseases and ruthless enemies.

The highest effect is for purifying the mind and thus gaining more and more inner-poise for the Saadhaka in meditation. This is technically called as Anga-Nyaasa and Kara-Nyaasa. This is a method by which the seeker with wilful thoughts and deliberate physical signs sanctifies himself to be a Divine Temple and installs various sacred deities in himself. This helps the student to realise that though he is worshipping the Lord as a Goal or an Ideal other than himself bheda or anya , in fact, he is to seek his identity with no traces of differentiation Abheda or Ananya , between himself and the Lord.

The final realization is a perfect identity indicated in the Mahaavaakya. Aham Brahmaasmi. However, pundits of ritualism in the South employ the Anga-Nyaasa; and it being such a beautiful act, so very helpful to the seekers, we give here below the most popular one practised widely in the South. Beside this deep significance, even though it be only for the time being, the student is also given a sense of purity and sanctity in himself. Just as a devotee feels highly inspired in the divine atmosphere of a sacred temple, so too, after the Anga-Nyaasa, however shattered we might have been, before we entered the Pooja-room, we can artificially work ourselves up into a divine mood of peace and purity.

The body itself is rendered as the temple of the Lord, wherein the various limbs become the altars upon which, with a heart of love and faith, the devotee invokes and installs various deities. In this process, in order to bring the full blast of the sacred suggestions to him, the repetition of each of these mantras is emphasised by a corresponding physical sign. The idea is only, as we have already explained, to establish the correct mood for devoted contemplation. Great mantras of deep spiritual significance and sublime Vedic dignity are not mere poetic compositions by mortal fallible intellects.

When a. Such statements when contemplated upon by lesser seekers, they too, in the spiritual cadence of these mantras, get unconsciously uplifted into realms unknown, and there they come to live a world of experiences unfrequented by the ordinary multitudes. Such Rishis themselves admit that they did not manufacture, compose or create the mantra, but they had a revelation or vision Darsanam of the mantra.

The Mantra- Drashtaa, the Rishi, is the guru of the seeker, who is seeking his path with the help of that particular mantra. The Rishi of a mantra is installed at the roof of the head and the seeker, in his seat of Vishnu-Sahasranaama-chanting,. Anushtup Chandah. The metre " chandah " in which the revealed mantra comes to the teacher is also mentioned because it orders the discipline that should be followed while chanting the mantra.

Anushtup is the name of the particular metre in which this thousand-name- chant on Vishnu is sung. Sri Vishvaroopo Mahaavishnur-Devataa. Lord Vishnu of the form of the entire universe of variegated names and forms Vishva-roopah is the deity of the mantra.

Vishnu is the theme of the chant. The Lord of Vaikuntha is the altar at which the devotee is preparing to offer himself in humble dedication and utter surrender. Symbolism: Since Lord Vishnu is, to the devotee, the Lord of his heart, the very centre of his personality, while chanting mentally the mantra 'C' the student, installs the Lord in his heart, bringing the fingers from the lips down to touch his bosom.

Devakee-nandanah srashteti Saktih. Every deity is a manifestation of the mighty Omnipotency of the Supreme. The creator and sustainer Srashtaa of Dharma, the son of Devaki Devakeenandana , is the manifested power " shaktih " of the Almighty. Symbolism: This creative power of righteous-ness and peace is installed at the navel naabhi point, and, therefore, the fingers come down from the heart region to the navel.

Sankha-bhrit nandakee chakree iti Keelakam. The mighty Creative Power invoked and established on the navel region cannot be as such conceived by the mind. This is only to show how the total cosmic Power, expressed in terms of our present understanding as creation, sustenance, and destruction, is but a manifestation of the Lord. Nandaka , the sword that punishes to bring joy Nandana into the community and the destruction , without which evolution is impossible, is represented by the concept of the Discus Chakra.

Here it is also to be noted that the blowing or the conch represents speech ; wielding the sword represents action and the discus that takes off from Him at His will , represents his thoughts. Thus this great Power installed at the navel expresses itself in the world through speech, action and thought.

Here it is to be carefully noted how:. Saarnga-dhanvaa-gadaa-dhara iti Astram.


Sri Vishnu Sahasranama Stotram & Lalita Sahasranama Stotram

The Vishnu Sahasranam is found in the Mahabharatha. Literally translated this means thousand names of Vishnu. This is found in the Anushasanika Parvam chapter relating to orders or rules to the kings of Mahabharatha. Bheeshma Pitamaha was defeated and grievously wounded by Arjuna. But since he could choose the time of his death as per the boons received by him, he chose to die in Uttarayana and was waiting for the auspicious time.


Vishnu Sahasranamam

There are myriad ways to worship the Supreme power that governs the entire universe. And one of the simplest yet most powerful forms can be executed by the mere recitation of the mantras, strotras and shlokas with utmost devotion. Interestingly, in Hinduism, a devotee has the privilege of choosing his Ishta Devta or favourite God, who he or she holds closest to the heart. The three most important deities in the Hindu pantheon are Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh Shiva who represent creation, sustenance and destruction respectively. Among them, Vishnu is hailed as the one who shields one and all. It is he who helps various forms of life thrive on the planet, and hence the significance. Out of the countless sacred verses dedicated to Lord Vishnu, the Vishnu Sahasranam is the most significant.

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