This stotram celebrates the auspicious quality (Kalyana Guna) of Mercy (Dayaa) of the Lord of Thiruvenkatam. Of All the Kalyana Gunaas of Venkataadhri Sekhara Vibhu, His Dayaa is the most important one for the uplift of the Chetanaas. The concept of Prapatthi and Thiruvenkatamudayaan’s Dayaa to realize the fruits of that Prapatthi is the subject of Sri Venkatanatha Kavi in this “Satakam”.

The structure of this stotram containing 108 slokas (one for each of the Divya Desa Archaa Murthys of Sriman Narayana perhaps) is extraordinarily impressive even by Swami Desikan’s standards of poetic excellence. Our Acharya has used ten plus different meters to compose the ten groups of slokas, each of which houses “ ten” slokas. The numbers of slokas and their poetic meters are as follows:

1. Slokaas 1-10: Anushtup meter
2. Slokaas 11-20: Aryaa meter
3. Slokaas 21-30: Oupacchandhasikam
4. Slokaas 31-40: Maalini
5. Slokaas 41-50: Mandhaakraanthaa
6. Slokaas 51-60: Nathkutakam
7. Slokaas 61-70: SikariNi
8. Slokaas 71-80: HariNi
9. Slokaas 81-90: Pruthvee
10. Slokaas 91-104: Vasantha Tilakaa
11. Slokaas 105& 106: Maalini again
12. Slokaas 107& 108: Sardhoola Vikriditham

In the tradition of Sri Sriraama DesikAcchAr Swamy, each set of the ten slokas have the essence of the ten Patthus of Thiruvaimozhi of Nammazhwaar.

According to this tradition, every set of ten reveals a particular meaning, which together covers the Ananatha KalyaaNa GuNams of the Lord of Thiruvenkatam. The ten meanings associated with the ten sets of ten slokas have been summarized by Srirama Desikaacchaar Swamy this way:

1. The Lord of Thiruvenkatam is the one, who can give Mokshaanugraham.
2. He comprehends everything and He is capable of carrying out whatever He chooses to do.
3. He destroys the enemies of those, who surrender unto Him and thereby seek His help.
4. He is the means for attaining ALL worthwhile goals.
5. He is the fruit of ALL worthwhile endeavours.
6. He can be reached easily thru the glorious means of Prapatthi.
7. He will rush to the help of the lowest and the highest with same speed, when they appeal to Him sincerely for help.
8. He is the Supreme Principle standing on top of Thiruvenkatam.
9. He is the one, who took the incarnations of Rama and Krishna.
10. He is the one, who can offer the happiness associated with Moksha right here on this earth.

Swami Desikan goes on to describe in detail the Anantha Kalyana Gunaas of Sriman Narayana in his Taatparya RatnaavaLi and Dramidopanishad Saaram. He is thus paying his tribute to Nammazhwaar’s Thiruvaimozhi in all of these three works. We will illustrate the ten essential meanings of Daya Satakam in the subsequent sections as revealed by Srirama Desikaacchaar Swamy in the tradition of his Achaarya, Navaneetham Krishnamaacchaar Swamy of Oppiliappan Koil.


Slokam 61

akuupaarair.h ekodaka samaya vaitaNDika javaiH
anirvaapyaaM xipraM xapayitum avidhyaakhya baDabaam.h.
kR^ipe tvaM tattaadR^ik.h prathima vR^iSha pR^ithvI dhara pati
svaruupa dvaiguNya dviguNa nija binduH prabhavasi..61


Oh Dayaa DEvi! If anyone asks how big is the hill of ThiruvEnkatam, we can only say that it is very, very big. Your Lord is the Master of that gigantic hill. His AathmA is all pervading and is limitless, where as the JeevathmA is atomic in size. His athmA is known as Vibhu and there is no place, where it is not present. His all pervasive Aathma is reverentially described as DhivyAthma Svaroopam. There is an entity, which is four times bigger than the Lord’s dhivyAthma svaroopam. That entity is one drop of You. You are therefore vaster than Your Lord in Svaroopam. A drop of Your grace performs wonders that even the terrifying waters of PraLayam can not do. Those waters would have covered every thing and there will be no distinction between the objects to be protected and the objects to be destroyed. The PraLayam waters would have devoured every thing. There is a Female with the face of a horse right in the middle of those PraLayam waters named VadavAgni. That alone can not be quenched by the roaring waters of PraLayam. All my karmAs assembled together are like that fire in the form of the horse with the female face. You alone can quench that gigantic bundle of karmAs quickly. For that purpose, one drop of Your grace is sufficient. That drop of Your Dayaa, which is four times larger than the dhivyAthma svaroopam of Your Lord, should intervene and protect adiyEn always.

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