GyanAnanda-mayam devam nirmala-sphaTikAkRtim
AdhAram sarvavidyAnAm hayagrIvam upAsmahe!
This verse is originally from the Pancaratra Agamas but is now popularly prefixed to the Hayagriva Stotram of the 13th century poet-philosopher Vedanta Desika. It is very popular among devotees of Hayagriva.
Vedanta Desika’s dhyana-sloka (meditative verse) on Hayagriva : Jn~Anandamayam dEvam, nirmala-spatikAkruthim and AaadhAram Sarva VidhyAnAm are the key words that flowed over the tongue of Swamy Desikan. Isvara Tattvam is captured by Swamy Desikan exquisitely through the choice of words, “Jn~Anandamayam, nirmalam, AadhAram Sarva VidhyAnAm”. These words have such powerful connotations that we will be spending a lot of time in the subsequent postings to fully comprehend the Vedic significance of these carefully chosen words by Swamy Desikan. In today’s posting, we will focus on Sri HayagrIvAvathAram.
THE AVATHARAM OF SRI HAYAGRIVAN
Lord HayagrIvan is one of the avathArams of Para VaasudEvan. He is AniruddhAmsam. The day of His incarnation is AvaNi ThiruvONam, which falls on September 10 this year.
He is saluted as Sarva VaagIsvarEsvaran, Sarva Vedamayan, UdhgItha PraNava Moorthy,
ChimayAnandha Roopi and VisvOtthIrNa SvarUpan in Sri HayagrIva Upanishad. In this avathAram, the face (Thirumukha MaNdalam) alone is that of a majestic horse and the body is like that of a human, except that it is suddha Satthva Mayam. He is the embodiment of PraNavam (OmkAram). He is the First Lord of all Vidhyais. During PraLayam, Moola Prakruthi reaches the subtle state of Tamas. The Jeevans get embedded in that Tamas and suffer very much. VyUha VaasudEvan incarnates as Aniruddhan and rests on the swirling torrent of PraLayam waters. He engages in Yoga nidhrai and reflects on how He can create the world anew and save the suffering jeevans locked in Tamas. During the Yoga Nidhrai, He creates Brahma Devan from the Lotus arising out of His Naabhi. Next, He instructs Brahma Devan on the VedhAdhyayanam and the meaning of all the Four VedAs.
He also blesses Brahma Deavan on the intricacies of Srishti (Creation). Before the creation of Brahman, His sankalpam led to the existence of two drops of water on the lotus leaf below the lotus flower. These two drops of water became the asurans Madhu with TamO GuNam and Kaitabhan with rajO guNam. They entered the lotus flower through the stem. There, BrahmA had just concluded creating four Vedas as four beautiful children. The two asurans grabbed the four babies and ran off to the nether world (PaathALam).
BrahmA was heart broken over his inconsolable loss. He could not continue with the creation of the world without the help of the VedAs, which were his eyes and guides. Brahma dEvan approached Aniruddha BhagavAn and begged for help. Aniruddhan took the form of VeLLai parimukhan (Human Body and a Horse’s face down to His neck). The hue of the avathAra moorthy was clear white like a spatikam. This is the HayagrIva Moorthy. He proceeded to the hiding place of the two asurans in PaathALam and raised the sound of UdhgItha PraNavam. The asurans were frightened on hearing the sound of UdhgItham. They dropped the four hildren (Vedams) and ran towards the direction wherefrom the udhgItham originated. At that time, Sri HayagrIvan recovered the children and returned them to Brahma Devan and restarted His Yoganidhrai as HayagrIvan. The asurans ran back to where they stole the VedAs and found HayagrIvan engaged in Yoga Nidhrai. The asurans made a lot of noise and woke up the
Lord. Sri Hayagrivan got up from His bed of Adhi Seshan and fought with the asurans and destroyed them. Afterwards, Sri HayagrIvan reinstructed Brahma Devan on the secrets of creation using the VedAs and returned to VyUha sthAnam.