Sunday, May 15, 2011

maaDu sikkadalla

maaDu sikkadalla
Composer: Sri Purandaradasa
Raaga: PantuvaraaLi; Taala: Adi

Translated by
Sri Chakravarthi Madhusudana

maaDu sikkadallaa maaDina gooDu sikakadallaa
jODu henDiraganji ODihOguvaaga gODe biddu bayalaayitallaa


eccaragoLalillaa manave huccanaadenallaa
accinoLage meccu meccinoLage accu
kicceddu hOyitallaa 1

muppu banditallaa tappade paayasa uNalillaa
tuppada bindige tippeyamEle
toppane bittallaa 2

yOgavu bantallaa baduku vibhaagavaayitallaa
bhOgishayana shree purandara viThalana
aaga neneyalillaa 3

Note: This keertana belongs to a class of compositions called ‘Mundige’ in which the words and phrases have hidden meanings. They are not what they appear to be. Sometimes the verses may be interpreted in more than one way,


I could not get to the mansion, nor to the niche in the mansion
As I was running away fearful of two wives, the wall fell down to make open space.
(Interpretation: The mansion is symbolic of protection. Hear it means the Lord. The niche is the abode of the Lord, that is, Sri Vaikuntham. The saint laments that he cannot attain either of these. When the body is attacked by its two enemies, old age and disease, the soul tries to escape by running away. The walls are the human body which contains the soul. When the wall falls, that is the when the body dies, the soul is no longer able to achieve its purpose in this life.)

I did not wake up, O Mind, I have become insane
The beloved is in the mould, the mould is in the beloved
Alas, the fire has gone out.
(Interpretation: The mind is the beloved of the mould or the human body. When the body becomes the beloved of the mind, the yearning for higher things is gone)

I have become old; I did not eat the sweet without fail
The jar of ghee, on the rubbish heap,
Has fallen with a thud.
(Interpretation: Here eating paayasam or sweet means the contemplating on the sweet name of Lord. In another verse, Purandaradasa himself has said ‘Raamanaama paayasakke Krishna naama sakkare’ – the dessert known as the name of Sri Rama is sweetened by the sugar called Sri Krishna. The saint again laments that when he was younger he did not taste this sweet regularly. The jar of ghee is symbolic of the soul which has striven for divine knowledge. In this wasted life, however, it has only accumulated unwanted trash.)

The moment has come, my life has been split
Alas, I did not keep my mind on Purandara Vithala
Whose bed is the serpent, when I could.

(Interpretation: When I was endowed with the human body, instead of trying to achieve salvation, I divided my life pursuing trivial things. Alas, I did not focus my mind on the Supreme.)