17. Kanakadhārā Sloka 11 to 21

Kanakadhārā Stotram Sloka 11

 श्रुत्यै नमोऽस्तु शुभकर्मफलप्रसूत्यै
रत्यै नमोऽस्तु रमणीयगुणार्णवायै
शक्त्यै नमोऽस्तु शतपत्रनिकेतनायै
पुष्ट्यै नमोऽस्तु पुरुषोत्तमवल्लभायै

 Shrutyai Namo-[A]stu Shubha-karmā-Phala-Prasuutyai
Ratyai Namo-[A]stu Ramanniiya-Gunna-Arnnavaayai |
Shaktyai Namo-[A]stu Shata-Patra-Niketanaayai
Pussttyai Namo-[A]stu Purussottama-Vallabhaayai

(Green Message Kanakadhārā Stotram, n.d.).

From this point on Śrī Śankara with His hands raised in Vandanam calls out to Śrī Lakṣmī expressing gratitude. As a reader, we should understand something, this stotram is small compared to many other beautiful and magnificent stotram given to us by our predecessors. And recognize the fact we discussed numerous times in the past, which is, a five-year-old boy did this and won the forgiveness of Śrī Lakṣmī.

Now, what does account too? What are we to gain from this? To start with, we learned a way out of our miseries, second that we have nothing to offer to Iśvara that is not already His. So, the only thing left to do is walk the path of Ḍharma and convey our gratitude to have received this existence. This is exactly what Śrī Śankaracharya did. All the slokas moving forward are His expression of gratitude (Vandanam), submitting the credit to Śrī Lakṣmī and nothing for Himself. This is the very meaning of the word ‘Namaha’, to relinquish ownership over what we thought was ours. In the word ‘Namaha, ‘Nama’ meaning mine, ‘aha’ meaning I relinquish it to you.

In our very early reading, we discussed Sribhashyam Appalacharyulu’s (a renowned scholar) message on how Śrī Lakṣmī would always feel complete when addressed through Her concert, Śrī Viṣṇu. Śrī Śankaracharya at the end of each sloka addresses Her as the Vallabha for Śrī Viṣṇu, meaning the one dearest to Śrī Viṣṇu. We should notice and cherish this beautiful pattern in the upcoming slokas during our Dhyāna(m). We also discussed the significance of a lotus flower and its analogy. This flower, more than any is referred to numerous times in Shastra (Śāstra), moving forwards Śrī Śankaracharya keeps revisiting this beautiful flower and its features to address various aspects of Śrī Lakṣmī and Śrī Viṣṇu.

Shrutyai Namo-[A]stu Shubha-karmā-Phala-Prasuutyai’ Namostu or Namaha to the voice heard by jñani and Rśi/Rishis (‘Shruti), which is the very breath of Iśvara, given to us as Vedā. This Shruti and its literature help us understand the purpose of our existence and the approach to prosperity, based on our sat:karmā (Shubha-karmā) resulting (Prasuutyai) in the fruit of our karmā (karmā:phala/Phala-Prasuutyai).

Ratyai Namo-[A]stu Ramanniiya-Gunna-Arnnavaayai’ Namostu to the ‘Rati’, who has the magnificent and sweet nature and endless qualities (Ramanniiya-Gunna). It’s Your māyā in which we dwell with our desires. It’s these desires that make us move forward towards self-preservation and towards exploring Iśvara.

Shaktyai Namo-[A]stu Shata-Patra-Niketanaayai’ Namostu to the ‘Śakti who in the form of Prakṛti is depicted as the petals of the lotus, untouched and unblemished by its surroundings. In the same way, our Kundalini should bloom like a lotus out of jñana(m) and devotion (bhakti). Since it’s the Divine Mother who has to give us devotion and uplift us toward jñana(m).

Pussttyai Namo-[A]stu Purussottama-Vallabhaayai’ Namostu to ‘Pussti’, The mother of creation and a nourishing adobe for us all, supporting the preservation-of-creation, and dearest to Puruṣhottama (Puruṣa:Uttama = foremost among the Puruṣa).  (Srichaganti. K.D.S, n.d., p.19)

Kanakadhārā Stotram Sloka 12

 नमोऽस्तु नालीकनिभाननायै
नमोऽस्तु दुग्धोदधिजन्मभूत्यै
नमोऽस्तु सोमामृतसोदरायै
नमोऽस्तु नारायणवल्लभायै

 Namo-[A]stu Naaliika-Nibha-[A]ananaayai
Namo-[A]stu Dugdho[a-U]dadhi-Janma-Bhuutyai |
Namo-[A]stu Soma-Amrta-Sodaraayai
Namo-[A]stu Naaraayanna-Vallabhaayai ||

(Green Message Kanakadhārā Stotram, n.d.).

Namo-[A]stu Naaliika-Nibha-[A]ananaayai’ Namostu to our Mother whose Soundaryam is inexpressible, so we compare it with the beauty of a lotus.

Namo-[A]stu Dugdho[a-U]dadhi-Janma-Bhuutyai’ Namostu to the Divine Mother who manifests as a daughter to many like the king of the Ocean (Sagara).

Namo-[A]stu Soma-Amrta-Sodaraayai’ Namostu to Śrī Lakṣmī who is the ambrosia dripping from the moon and is the sibling to the moon since they both emerged from the ocean (King Samudra) as his children during Kṣīrāsagara Madan(am).

‘Namo-[A]stu Naaraayanna-Vallabhaayai’ Namostu to the one beloved to the Śrīman Nārāyaṇa who is our father and our preserver and in whom we all reside. His Shakthi (Śakti) is our adobe and supports the concept of preservation so that we can exist and cherish our lives in this dhara.

(Srichaganti. K.D.S, n.d., p.1-19), (Green Message Kanakadhārā Stotram, n.d.), Venkat Raman, C (n.d.).

Kanakadhārā Stotram Sloka 13

नमोऽस्तु हेमाम्बुजपीठिकायै
नमोऽस्तु भूमण्डलनायिकायै।
नमोऽस्तु देवादिदयापरायै
नमोऽस्तु शार्ङ्गायुधवल्लभायै ॥

Namosthu hemambhuja peetikayai,
Namosthu bhoo mandala nayikayai,
Namosthu devathi dhaya prayai,
Namosthu Sarngayudha vallabhayai.

(Hindu God Aarathi Collection. K.S.L. 2014.)

Namosthu hemambhuja peetikayai’ Namostu to the One is seated on “hemambhuja” where-in ‘Hema’ means Suvarna (glittering like gold) lotus that blooms and shines in the light of the Sun, similarly, She blooms in joy when the sight of Śrī Viṣṇu falls on Her.

Namosthu bhoo mandala nayikayai’ Namostu to the one, whose Śakti manifests as Prakṛti and as pure energy that moves this creation through various phenomena. It’s this Prakṛti and its energy that constitutes Bhumi (Earth) and She the Divine Mother as Vasundara is the source of all the riches, making Her the queen (nayika) of Bhumi.

Namosthu devathi dhaya prayai’ Namostu to the one who bestows daya (forgiveness) with Her Tadi to all Devatas.

‘Namosthu Sarngayudha vallabhayai’ Namostu to the concert of the One who holds the Saranga (bow forged by Vishwa:karmā and presented to Śrī Viṣṇu).

(Srichaganti. K.D.S, n.d., p.1-19)

Kanakadhārā Stotram Sloka 14

नमोऽस्तु देव्यै भृगुनन्दनायै
नमोऽस्तु विष्णोरुरसि स्थितायै।
नमोऽस्तु लक्ष्म्यै कमलालयायै
नमोऽस्तु दामोदरवल्लभायै ॥

Namosthu devyai bhrugu nandanayai,
Namosthu vishnorurasi sthithayai,
Namosthu lakshmyai kamalalayai,
Namosthu dhamodhra vallabhayai.

(Hindu God Aarathi Collection. K.S.L. 2014.)

Namosthu devyai bhrugu nandanayai’ Namostu to the Divine Mother who comes as a daughter to many like Maharśi Bhrigu as Bhargavi.

Namosthu vishnorurasi sthithayai’ Namostu to the One who has taken adobe in the Hrudyam of Śrī Mahā Viṣṇu, becoming His very compassion, under which we prosper.

Namosthu lakshmyai kamalalayai’ Namostu to the one who resides in the lotus (one of many places where Śrī Lakṣmī resides, others being, the head of Elephant, the rear of a cow, the temple of a woman wearing sindoor and Bliva leaf).

Namosthu dhamodhra vallabhayai’ Namostu to the concert of the one who allowed Himself to be bound by a simple rustic gopika (Yashoda) and attained the title Dhamodara, who still retains the marks and bruises around His waist to tell us that He was tied by those ropes of love, devotion, and innocence.

(Srichaganti. K.D.S, n.d., p.1-19)

Kanakadhārā Stotram Sloka 15

नमोऽस्तु कान्त्यै कमलेक्षणायै
नमोऽस्तु भूत्यै भुवनप्रसूत्यै।
नमोऽस्तु देवादिभिरर्चितायै
नमोऽस्तु नन्दात्मजवल्लभायै

Namosthu Kanthyai kamalekshanayai,
Namosthu bhoothyai bhuvanaprasoothyai,
Namosthu devadhibhir archithayai,
Namosthu nandhathmaja vallabhayai.

(Hindu God Aarathi Collection. K.S.L. 2014.)

Namosthu Kanthyai kamalekshanayai’ Namostu to the One who is radiant (Kanthyai) and has the soothing hue of a lotus flower.

Namosthu bhoothyai bhuvanaprasoothyai’ Namostu to the one who is as the phenomena of Bhumi (Earth) and as Vasundhara is the Mother to us all, and adobe to all riches.

Namosthu devadhibhir archithayai’ Namostu to Her, who is ‘archithayai’ (worshiped by reciting various titles) with the flowers of Kalpavruksham (Divine tree emerged during the Kṣīrāsagara Madanam) by Devatas (devadhibhir = beings of Swarga:loka).

Namosthu nandhathmaja vallabhayai’ Namostu to the dear concert of the One who came and served as a Son to Nanda and served him as a son and hence gained the title Nandanaya.

(Srichaganti. K.D.S, n.d., p.1-19)

Kanakadhārā Stotram Sloka 16

 सम्पत्कराणि सकलेन्द्रियनन्दनानि
साम्राज्यदानविभवानि सरोरुहाक्षि
त्वद्वन्दनानि दुरिताहरणोद्यतानि
मामेव मातरनिशं कलयन्तु मान्ये

 Sampat-Karaanni Sakale[a-I]ndriya-Nandanaani
Saamraajya-Daana-Vibhavaani Saroruha-Akssi |
Tvad-Vandanaani Duritaa-Haranno[a-U]dyataani
Maam-Eva Maatar-Anisham Kalayantu Maanye ||

(Green Message Kanakadhārā Stotram, n.d.).

Note, though Śrī Śankaracharya is not explicitly using Namostu in this sloka, He is continuing His flow of gratitude ‘Namaha’.

Sampat-Karaanni Sakale[a-I]ndriya-Nandanaani’ Namostu to the lotus-like eyes filled with Tadi, bestowing forgiveness, joy, and happiness that we enjoy through all our senses (Sakale[a-I]ndriya). Because it’s these senses through which we understand this physical creation (Prapañcha). Here Śrī Śankaracharya again addressed Sir Lakshmi as ‘Nandanaani’ similar to the above sloka, and so He (Śrī Śankaracharya) is not letting go of His approach to keep addressing Her through Śrī Viṣṇu.

Saamraajya-Daana-Vibhavaani Saroruha-Akssi’ Namostu to those lotus-like eyes (Saroruha-Akssi) that can bestow (Saamraajya-Daana) the heavens and its kingship. If we can recall, it’s Her very sight that bestowed the kingship of heaves to Indra during Kṣīrāsagara.

Tvad-Vandanaani Duritaa-Haranno[a-U]dyataani’ we started this very discourse with ‘Vandanaan’ (salutations) to Ganesha and to the Divine Mother Gowri, Śrī Śankaracharya is now performing His Vandanam to Śrī Lakṣmī asking Her to remove our ‘Duritam’ (difficulties and misfortunes) which are a result of our dush:karmā, but why? Because of ‘dyataani’ meaning daya (compassion) which is Her tadi as we are Her children yet to learn and walk towards devotion and jñana(m).

Maam-Eva Maatar-Anisham Kalayantu Maanye’ it’s to this Divine Mother that we may always seek Her forgiveness and become eligible to fall in Her eyes by reciting and exploring Her glories. To do this we must be channeled by the Divine Mother Herself so that we can walk towards Iśvara. To gain devotion we have to urge the Divine Mother for devotion and this happens through the realization that this reality is not ours to have been created or controlled, and we with our limited comprehension and time can’t perceive the karmā:phala that is going to catch up.

(Srichaganti. K.D.S, n.d., p.1-19, Green Message Kanakadhārā Stotram, n.d., Venkat Raman C, n.d.).

Kanakadhārā Stotram Sloka 17

सेवकस्य सकलार्थसम्पदः
संतनोति वचनाङ्गमानसैस्_
त्वां मुरारिहृदयेश्वरीं भजे

Sevakasya Sakala-Artha-Sampadah |
Samtanoti Vacana-Angga-Maanasais_
Tvaam Muraari-Hrdaye[a-I]shvariim Bhaje ||

(Green Message Kanakadhārā Stotram, n.d.).

Namostu to the Divine Mother’s partially opened eyes filled with compassion, who is the beloved queen to the (Hrdaye[a-I]shvariim) of  ‘Muraari’ (Sri Hari who abolished Murasura and freed the Puráńas from his bondage). Serving whom (Sevakasya), one can be bestowed (Kattaakssa) with all-purpose and meaning to one’s life (Sakala-Artha), and prosperity (Sampadah). It’s to Her sight and lotus-like eyes to whom I chant and sing (Bhajan) and express my gratitude through words (Vacana), my emotions and thoughts (Maanasais), and through upacharas (Sevakasya) with these hands (Angga). It’s through these services that all meaning (Artha) can be earned, hence the word ‘Sampadah’.

(Srichaganti. K.D.S, n.d., p.1-19)

Kanakadhārā Stotram Sloka 18 & 19

 सरसिजनिलये सरोजहस्ते
भगवति हरिवल्लभे मनोज्ञे
त्रिभुवनभूतिकरि प्रसीद मह्यम्

 Sarasija-Nilaye Saroja-Haste
Dhavalatama-Amshuka-Gandha-Maalya-Shobhe |
Bhagavati Hari-Vallabhe Manojnye
Tri-Bhuvana-Bhuuti-Kari Prasiida Mahyam

(Green Message Kanakadhārā Stotram, n.d.).

 दिग्घस्तिभिः कनककुम्भमुखावसृष्ट_
प्रातर्नमामि जगतां जननीमशेष_

 Dig-[G]hastibhih Kanaka-Kumbha-Mukha-Avasrsstta_
Svar-Vaahinii-Vimala-Caaru-Jala-Pluta-Anggiim |
Praatar-Namaami Jagataam Jananiim-Ashessa_
Loka-Adhinaatha-Grhinniim-Amrta-Abdhi-Putriim ||

(Green Message Kanakadhārā Stotram, n.d.).

Śrī Śankaracharya incorporated this mantra from Śrī Sūktam where Śrī Lakṣmī is addressed as ‘Sarasija-Nilaye’ meaning the one who is seated in a lotus, and ‘Saroja-Haste’ means to hold a lotus flower in hand. In our earlier reading, we discussed the significance of a lotus compared to any other flower and why most of Iśvara’s manifestations are depicted and admired using a lotus. In the next phrase, Śrī Lakṣmī is called as ‘Dhavalatama-Amshuka-Gandha-Maalya-Shobhe’, meaning the one whose radiance is soothing and fragrance like Gandha (sandalwood). This is similar to our discussion in sloka 6 on how Śrī Lakṣmī’s soothing radiance covers Śrī Viṣṇu like a garland and overwhelms the radiance of the jewel ‘Kaustubha’. It’s Her radiance in which we can realize our father (the preserver of creation) because She is the dear concert of Śrī Viṣṇu (Hari-Vallabhe) and the mother of the three lokas (Tri-Bhuvana) from whose grace all lokas attains happiness and prosperity.

Śrī Śankaracharya then refers to the second sloka from Śrī Sūktam where in abhisheka(m) (ritual holy bath) is performed by ‘Dig-ghast’ (also known as diggaja(m), which are elephants holding the world on their forehead from submerging into the abyss of the ever-expanding universe). These diggaja(m) are pouring holy water using golden pots (Kanaka-Kumbha) emulating Her magnificent beauty to be even more splendid. If we recall, we discussed a similar reference when Śrī Lakṣmī emerges from the Ocean (Samudra) during Kṣīrāsagara Madan(am) and was performed abhisheka(m) (ritual hold bath) where Ganga (the innate controller or Śakti of river Ganga) gave water in ‘Purna Kalasha’ (Kalasha = vessel).

This ritual of abhisheka(m) should be visualized by us during our Dhyāna and convey our gratitude by performing Namaskar, especially during the auspicious time of the day which is the Praata:kālá(am) (Pratha = early hours before sunrise, kālá(am) =time/period), hence the phrase ‘Praatar-Namaami’. Sir Lakshmi in this sloka is addressed as ‘Jagataam Jananiim’ meaning Mother to all realities. She is also addressed as ‘Grhinniim’ meaning the homemaker of the Preserver-of-Creation and lord to all lokas hence the phrase ‘Loka-Adhinaatha-Grhinniim’. Finally, She is addressed from Her father’s side as the daughter of King Sagara (Amrta-Abdhi-Putriim) from whom arose the ambrosia of immortality (Amrta).

This is a beautify sloka where one can dwell in a deep meditative trance (Tantra) dwelling on Her abhisheka(m) and emulating Her essence from there different angles, which are, A Mother to us all, as the concert (Śakti) to the Preserver, and finally as the daughter to the King Sagara. During Shodash:opachara pūjā (16 forms of offerings) wherein we perform holy bath by saying ‘Snanam Samarpayami’, Maharśi’s tell us to imagine this scenario of Śrī Lakṣmī receiving this magnificent abhisheka(m).

So why did Śrī Śankaracharya bring the mantra from Śrī Sūktam into Kanakadhārā? First, let’s understand that Śrī Śankaracharya is not composing a stotram in leisure or attempting to formulate an artistic symphony. He, in His devotion and compassion, is reciting this stotram in extempore and so came a Dhārā (continuous flow), and this mantra from Śrī Sūktam came as a part of it. Hence, in our discussion when we say Śrī Śankaracharya incorporated this mantra, it’s to be understood that He is not meticulously and thoughtfully crafting this as a formula. This is the very reason why a Dhārā (a flow) makes its own path and not a designated route. Another reason being, not everyone is able to memorize the mantra of Śrī Sūktam with swara(m) (proper rhythm/meter) and interpret them, hence in this way we can harness its magnificence as a part of Kanakadhārā. Śrī Sūktam is one such magnificent stotram wherein its slokas can be found in many other stotram and rituals.

(Srichaganti. K.D.S, n.d., p.1-19), (Green Message Kanakadhārā Stotram, n.d.).

Kanakadhārā Stotram Sloka 20

 कमले कमलाक्षवल्लभे
त्वं करुणापूरतरङ्गितैरपाङ्गैः
अवलोकय मामकिञ्चनानां
प्रथमं पात्रमकृत्रिमं दयायाः

 Kamale Kamala-Akssa-Vallabhe
Tvam Karunnaa-Puura-Taranggitair-Apaanggaih |
Avalokaya Maam-Akincanaanaam
Prathamam Paatram-Akrtrimam Dayaayaah ||

(Green Message Kanakadhārā Stotram, n.d.).

Śrī Śankaracharya’s Namaha continues by addressing Śrī Lakṣmī as the Mother who is like the majestic lotus, hence the word ‘Kamale’ and ‘Vallabhe’ meaning concert to the One who also has eyes like the lotus petal (Kamala-Akssa). Let’s recollect once again that, Śrī Lakṣmī is often addressed not just by her own majestic titles but from Her concert Śrī Viṣṇu, this is the reason why Śakti and Puruṣa should always be worshiped together as one (Śrī Viṣṇu, Uma-Maheśvara, Vani-Hiranyagarbha)

Śrī Śankaracharya then says ‘Karunnaa-Puura-Taranggitair-Apaanggaih’ meaning the eyes filled with compassion (Karunnaa) and may that glance fall up me and vanquish my dush:karmā. But before that Śrī Śankara asks Śrī Lakṣmī to make us eligible to be worthy of Her glance. Making us worthy is by giving us devotion (bhakti) and giving us the strength to walk the path of Ḍharma.

Śrī Śankara is saying, that it’s to the Divine Mother that ‘I’ urge, using His reference on our behalf, so when we read this stotram it will refer to us all and make us eligible to fall in the gracious and compassionate eyes. As we have discussed earlier, to get devotion we must ask for devotion from the Divine Mother, making it the first step towards the path of devotion. It’s at this point that we should realize that this creation is not ours to own. With our buddhi (intelligence) and viveka (discrimination) we can try to interpret the phenomenon and try to use it, however, we must understand the existence of higher conscience, so that, we with our humility can ask for knowledge (vidya) to understand Ḍharma rather than to use it to seek more comforts.  (Srichaganti. K.D.S, n.d., p.1-19)

Kanakadhārā Stotram Sloka 21

 स्तुवन्ति ये स्तुतिभिरमूभिरन्वहं
त्रयीमयीं त्रिभुवनमातरं रमाम्
गुणाधिका गुरुतरभाग्यभागिनो
भवन्ति ते भुवि बुधभाविताशयाः

 Stuvanti Ye Stutibhir-Amuubhir-Anvaham
Trayiimayiim Tri-Bhuvana-Maataram Ramaam |
Gunna-Adhikaa Gurutara-Bhaagya-Bhaagino
Bhavanti Te Bhuvi Budha-Bhaavitaa-Shayaah ||

Elders of this culture say that one who recites (‘Stuti’) and dwells in Kanakadhārā each day, will gradually evolve in both prosperity and jñana(m), without explicitly asking Iśvara for our desires to be fulfilled (desire in line with Ḍharma). The Divine Mother as Shakambhari will automatically take care of us by fulfilling our necessities. Because the Divine Mother is the Mother of the three worlds hence called ‘Tri-Bhuvana-Maataram’ (‘Tri’ = three, ‘Bhuvana’ = worlds and ‘Maataram’ = Mother). If we recall, Śrī Śankara addressed the Divine Mother earlier in a similar fashion by calling Her as ‘Triloka-Matha’, meaning the Mother of the three lokas. Śrī Śankara has constantly tried to emphasize the Divine Mother through Her Motherhood, as the concert of the Puruṣa (Śrī Viṣṇu in case of Śrī Lakṣmī), as a daughter to many, and finally referenced Her glorious aspects through the features of a lotus, and it’s through this approach He sought the ‘Tadi’ in Her eyes. It’s we who should fall in Her eyes, and purge our dush:karmā, because She is the One with endless virtues and characters, hence the phrase ‘Gunna-Adhikaa’ (‘Gunna’ = characteristics and ‘Adhikaa’ = abundance). It’s these endless Guṇas, like Her compassion and anunayana(m), She is called ‘Trayimayi’ (the essence of Vedā ) which is the very breath of Iśvara. It’s with such constant exploration towards comprehending Iśvara, that our buddhi can awaken and help us walk towards our own upliftment, this is the meaning of the last stance ‘Budha-Bhaavitaa-Shayaah’.

Note apart from this discourse: This last stance is very similar to the Gayatri mantra wherein we request Iśvara to help us awaken that buddhi so that we can comprehend His glory and His creation.

At this point, Śrī Śankaracharya with His hands held together performing vandanam stood still in the midst of Śrī Lakṣmī’s Kanakadhārā. At the end of this dhara He lowed His hands and walked away, not a single golden amla was touched by Him. He waited for no appreciation, no gratitude, no credit or reward. Does this remind of an analogy we discussed numerous times? If we recall we discussed an attribute of Iśvara in comparison to the dark clouds which shower rain and go away, seeking no recognition, Śrī Śankaracharya did the same, no one asked Him to come, nor asked for forgiveness or for prosperity, He came, He advocated, made golden amlas shower and walked away while Prakṛti (nature or creation) and kālá(am) (time) witnessed a Jagath Guru blossom that day and pass on a legacy for generations to come so that we can uplift ourselves from karmā and be eligible to fall in the eyes of Iśvara.  (Srichaganti. K.D.S, n.d., p.1-19)

~ Vande Jagath Guru Śrī Śankaracharyacharya ~

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