DEDICATED TO ARDENT SERVICE AT THE LOTUS FEET OF LORD Narayana, the presiding deity of Guruvayoor, Brahmasri Melpathur Narayana Bhattatiri, who gave to the world this great devotional hymn, Srimad Naryaneeyam, was a great Sanskrit scholar, well-versed in Vedas, free from all attachments, and a great devotee of the Lord.
Through this work, SRIMAD NARAYANEEYAM, the author enters the path of unshakable devotion to the Lord. Being concerned with and affectionate to his fellow-beings, he wants to reveal to them, the greatness and superiority of his self-chosen path of devotion to the Lord so that they are also encouraged to adopt the same path to God-realisation.
Srimad Narayaneeyam is nothing but a condensation of Srimad Bhagavata Mahapuranam, a much more detailed account of the stories of Lord Mahavishnu. It has, however, marvellously captured the essence of the latter.
In the opening chapter, the author gives a vivid description of the greatness and glory of the Supreme Brahman. The author brings out clearly that it is Lord Vishnu who is shining resplendently in the divine and charming image in the sanctum sanctorum of the temple at Guruvayoor while portraying the origin, composition, the all-surpassing beauty of His form, His affection towards His devotees, His readiness to grant their desires, even unasked, His superiority over other Gods, and finally, how He alone is entitled to the epithet of “Bhagavan”.
Please see this link for NARAYANEEYAM : BHAKTARANJINI COMMENTARY
Dr. Sindu., Council Member on
This information comes from my own knowledge.
Hello Kavitha, Narayaneeyam is the master piece of Melpathur and it is the most widely read of all his works. As the poet himself has pointed, it is a poetic work of hymn dealing with the story of Narayana, written by Narayana (Melpathur Narayana Bhatathiri). The poet depicts the image of Lord Guruvayurappan, in exemplary terms - "Sammohanam Mohanal Kantham Kanthinidhanathopi, Madhuram Madhurya Dhuryadapi, Soundaryotharathopi Sundaratharam”, and these become doubly meaningful and apt when applied to this exquisite work also. The theme of Narayaneeyam is based on the stories in Bhagavatham; it is, almost, an epitome of the great Purana. But unlike Vyasa, who has introduced in the first 'Skandha' itself, the speaker (Sree Suka Brahmarshi) and the listener (Emperor Pareek****h), the poet himself is the speaker in Narayaneeyam, who sings before the Lord Guruvayurappan, in a sublime tune about His glories and prays to Him to bless him to be cured of his disease. The ‘Parayana' of Narayaneeyam is believed to possess the wonderful power of healing afflictions, both mental and physical, of the devotees. The personal experiences of the poet himself have proved this beyond doubt. The "Nithyaparayana” of Narayaneeyam will enable the devotees to attain " Ayurarogyasoukhyam”. In the realm of the hymns in Sanskrit, Narayaneeyam occupies an exalted position. As a pure literary piece, it is pre-eminent. And, as a unique hymn saturated with divine "Bhakthi”, it is unparalleled. Dr. B. Ramakrishna Rao, who was the Governor of Kerala happened to hear Narayaneeyam read out, and attracted by the greatness of it, got it translated into Telugu and published in Andhra. Narayaneeyam has been translated into Tamil also.
Narayaneeyam begins worshipping Lord Guruvayurappan in His divine form which is "Sandranandavabodhatmakam” and ends depicting Sree Krishna as if he sees Him before his mortal eyes.
Narayaneeya Sapthaham ( the recitation of Narayaneeyam and explaining the meaning to the public) is conducted in Guruvayur temple by Devaswom on the Narayaneeya Dinam and by others as offerings. It is done for seven consecutive days from early morning till 6.10 pm in the evening. Narayaneeya Sapthaham has started in Guruvayur in the early 50's. It takes about 5 hours to read the slokas and about 45 hours for explaining the slokas. http://www.geocities.com/completena…
SRIMAD NARAYANEEYAM is the story of Lord Narayana. It is a work consisting of 1036 slokas or verses, divided into 100 dasakams or chapters, each dasakam consisting of approximately 10 slokas. Composed by Melpathur Narayana Bhattatiri, it is a condensed version of Srimad Bhagavata Mahapuranam, which consists of 18,000 slokas authored by Veda Vyasa (Bhagavata-artha-sangraha). It is said that the work has the blessings of Lord Krishna or Guruvayoorappan, the presiding Deity of the shrine of Guruvayoor.
As the story goes, the author, Melpathur Narayana Bhattatiri voluntarily transferred onto himself, the ailment of paralysis from his Guru and relative, Trikandiyur Achuta Pisharoti ritualistically, in order to save him. In the process, he himself became a paralytic. He then got himself carried to the shrine at Guruvayoor where he could take shelter at the feet of Lord Krishna and get divine intervention.
As he was continuing to suffer from excruciating pain due to his malady, he sought advice from the celebrated contemporary poet, Thunjath Ezhuthatchan, who suggested that Bhattatiri should “start with the fish”. Bhattatiri, being quick to understand the implication of this suggestion, viz., that he should compose a hymn in praise of Lord Guruvayoorappan giving an account of all His sportive incarnations beginning with the incarnation as fish (Matsya-avatara), he sat at the feet of the Lord and composed this great work, a dasakam a day, with ardent devotion. At the end of the hundredth day, when he had completed all the one hundred dasakams, it is said that he had a glorious vision of the Lord and he was completely cured of his ailment. Bhattatiri composed Narayaneeyam when he was twenty-seven, completing it on November 27, 1587.
This work, composed in praise of Lord Krishna, and which is said to have received divine intervention at different stages, is considered to be a short and sweet substitute for Srimad Bhagavata Mahapuranam and is recited by devotees all over the world as a general prayer and also as a panacea for all ailments causing impairment or loss of motor function of nerves. Innumerable devotees flock to the Guruvayoor temple and offer worship to the Lord, reciting this hymn of prayer in the firm hope, belief and trust that they would be cured of their ailments.
About "Srimad Narayaneeyam" : The devotional epic, Narayaneeyam, was composed by Melpathur Narayana Bhattapada (Bhattthiri) in the ninth decade of the 16th century A.D. , and is reckoned by scholars (with the aid of internal evidence) to have been completed on the 28th day of Vrischigam (November-December) of the Malayalam (Kollam) Era 763 (spanning the 12 months, mid-April 1587 to mid-April 1588 A.D.). Bhattathiri was born circa 1560 A.D. in a Namboothiri Brahmin family of Kerala, at a place close to the famous temple at Tirunavayi, on the banks of river Bharatpuzha (reference to which is found in Dasakam 92, verse 7). Being of a precocious, pious and religious disposition, he is said to have mastered the ancient Hindu scriptures, Vedas, Vedangas, etc and studied Mimamsa, Vyakarana (grammar), Tarka (logic), and other subjects, all by the age of sixteen years. His primary guru was his own father, Mathrudutta, himself a great scholar and devotee of Lord Mahavishnu, besides Madhavacharya, Tirukandiyur Achyuta Pisharoty and his own elder brother, Damodara. He composed Narayaneeyam at the age of 27. He has authored works on Sanskrit grammar and other subjects besides. According to legend, Bhattathiri acquired the disease of paralysis voluntarily, by praying to the Lord for trasnferring the disease to him from his teacher of Sanskrit grammar, Achyuta Pisharoty, who had been suffering from it, thereby relieving his Guru from the ailment. He, then, had himself carried to the temple of Lord Krishna at Guruvayur, and lying prostrate before the Lord, he sought shelter and relief at the Lord’s lotus-feet. He sent his emissaries to Thunchathu Ramanujan Ethuthacchan, renowned Malayalam scholar and composer of the Ramayana Epic in that language (which ranks at par with Valmiki Ramayanam, Kamba Ramayanam, Tulsi Ramayan, etc) for advice on ways and means of getting a cure for his illness. The advice he received (by word of mouth) through his emissaries was “to serve (the Lord) starting with Fish”. Bhattathiri understood the message in the correct sense and straightaway entered upon the monumental task of composing a highly condensed version of Srimad Bhagavatam, the great epic composed by the eminent Sage Veda Vyasa, which sets out in great detail, a magnificent account of the origin of the universe and Lord Mahavishnu’s several incarnations for the establishment and sustenance of “Dharma” ( acomplex multi-faceted concept, inadequately indicated by the term ‘righteousness’), the evolution of creation, the rules of conduct, the different paths available for the attainment of Moksha or Nirvana (salvation), and many other matters. Bhattathiri composed daily one Dasakam (group of ten ’shlokams’, or stanzas or verses, in general, with a few variations in number, here and there. On the 100th day, he is believed to have had a dazzling Darshan (vision) of the Lord himself in concrete (Saakara) form, which he then proceeded to set out in ten verses, and was cured of his ailments. In these ten verses, Bhattathiri has given a graphic head-to-foot description (in picturesque language) of the Lord’s form as Venugopala, and of his wonderful, soul-stirring and ecstatic experience. Bhattathiri is believed to have shed his mortal coils at the ripe old age of 105 years, but his magnificent mini-epic endures forever.
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