SrI Raaman’s praise of the Swan
Oh Dear Swan! The Yogis recognize you as the vAhanam of Brahma devan seated in the lotus arising from Sriman nArAyaNan’s navel. They also recognize you as arising from the kulam of the divine Hamsam that instructed Brahma devan on the various divisions of the vast Vedams remaining as shoreless oceans along with their rahsyArthams. Oh Swan with a beautiful gait! You have also acquired from Sarasvati, the divine consort of Brahma devan, Your beautiful white hue and the nectarine voice, which is most delectable to experience. Such is Your Vaibhavam!
The limitless (endless) VedAs are vast as the shoreless oceans. Sriman nArAyaNan, who is a Master of all these VedAs instructs Brahma devan on the Veda mantras and their meanings to enable Brahma devan to engage in srshTi kAryam. The created world is in the form of Sriman nArAyaNan. Oh Swan! You have the glory of being born in the vamSam of that Sriman nArAyaNan, who took HamsAvatAram. Yogis recognize You as the vAhanam of Brahma devan, who resides in the lotus arising out of the navel of Sriman nArAyaNan. Your charming gait is beyond description. Due to the anugraham of Sarasvati devi, Brahma devan’s consort, you have the same beautiful hue that Sarasvati has. Further, through Sarsavati’s blessings, You have acquired a nectar-like voice and people love to drink it in.
Oh Swan Friend! In this world there are so many common folks. One does not see any greatness or auspicious traits in them. They are recognized as humans only by name and form. We belong to that group of common folks and occupy one corner in this group. When it comes to You, due to your puNyam, You have a divine birth. You are the leader among the birds that fly in the sky. Your vaibhavam is clearly perceived by all. In spite of your lofty status, the act of going to LankA as my messenger will not demean you. It is a plus for you to engage in an act that would remove the sorrow of one, who has sought your refuge. Did not the creator of the universe (Brhama devan) act as the sArati for Sivan during tripura samhAram and helped Sivan to win?
Identifying with His mAnusha avatAram (incarnation as a human being), SrI Raaman befriends the Swan and points out that he along with many others are simple human beings with nothing special to claim in this world (iha vayam kevalam mAnushANAm madye kecit). In contrast to our lot, Oh Swan! You have clear status as a lofty leader of those which fly in the air and go from place to place with speed. Beyond that, the duty of a lofty leader is to intervene and respond to the appeal of a saraNAgatan. It is therefore appropriate for You to accept my request to be my dUtan. The case in point is Brahma devan, who accepted Sivan’s request for help and served as his charioteer in spite of His lofty status as the Creator of the universe.
The key message is: “samSrita trANa heto: bhavata: dUtyam sthAne”.
English Commentary by Sri Oppiliappan Sadagopan
The following is pictorial representation of the slokas followed by Nammalwars pasuram where Nammalwar sends the swan as dhootha to Emberuman in Vidhiyinal pedai manakkum mennadaya annankal!
Courtesy: Smt Jayanthi Sridharan (Carnatic vocalist)