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Sundara Manmatha Koti Prakaasha,Hare Sri Krishna
When i am about to die, the only forms that should appear b4 me should be that of the Lord (Krishna) with the beautiful flute kept on his lips , with the peacock plumes slantingly placed on his head and with the body as blue as bluestone
Swami Desikan in GopAla Vimshathi

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Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Karuna Cheyvan Enthu Thamasam Krishna

My dear blogger aatmans,

Iniya Deepavali Nalvaazhthukkal

Happy Deepavali.

I am sure that I will be an immense pleasure zone at the end of this blog post . I also would like and hope it to be the same for you guys too. Let me first invoke the blessings of Sri Guruvayoorappan and all the great people who have sung in praise of the glorious deity of Guruvayoor. In fact , this post is going to revolve around gurvayoorappan.I offer my salutations to the balakrishna , who is none other than the Supreme being.

Sri Gurpavana puraadeeshaaya Sri Krishnaaya Parabrahmaney Nama:

Gurupavanapuri Mahaatmyam

In a place ,free of any materialistic contamination , housed in a very simple yet elegant and beautifully structured Keralite temple,5000 years old, is the extremely sacred , four-armed divyaroopam of Sriman Narayana, Gurvayoorappan,the bountiful giver fo those who are dear to him. That beautiful HE, made of a precious and rare stone called as Pathala Anjananam (Black Bismuth) is said to have its origin even before the Satya Yuga (approx 4.5 millions years ago) when Sri Vishnu himself is believed to worship. It was later given to Brahma.

Once King Suthapas and Prsni performed penance for twelve thousand divine years in front of that Idol, which was given to them by Brahma. Lord Vishnu , pleased with their devotion , appeared before them and asked for a boon. Very pleased after seing Vishnu, Suthapas prayed thrice and spoke " It would be good if a son equal to Thee is born". Lord Vishnu replied "Only I am equal to Me. Therefore, I shall Myself incarnate as your son, in order to fulfil your desire. Since you have repeated your prayer thrice, I shall be assuming the aspect of your son in three births." Not long after that, Prsni lord himself incarnated in Prsnis womb as Prsni Garbha, who later propagated the greatness of Brahmacharya to the world.

Likewise ,in the next two births of Prsni and Suthapa , the lord incarnated as Vamana through Aditi and Kasyapa and and as Sri Krishna through Devaki and Vasudeva. After slaying Kamsa, Lord Krishna himself installed and consecrated the idol in Dwarakaa. Before swargarohana , Sri Krishna requested his friend Udhava to entrust the job of rescuing the idol from a deluge to Brhaspathi(Guru) and Vayu. The rescued idol was later installed at a location named after Guru and Vayu as Gurupavanapuri , which later became Guruvayoor in Malayalam. Since, the idol was worshipped by Vishnu himself in Vaikunta, Guruvayoor is referred to as 'Bhooloka Vaikuntha".

Some Tid-bits about Gurupavanapuri

The Gurvaayoor Devaswom is one of the richest in India, only next to TTD, Tirupathi

The gurvayoor temple owns and maintains the largest number of captive elephants (about 63)

It is believed that Adi Shankara was made to prostrate before the detiy when he ignoringly wanted to flew past over the place along with Narada Muni.

The great Bhakthas of Gurupavanpuri

It would be of no wonder to find such a divyaroopavigraham of Sri Krishna to have enchanted and still enchanting many devout hearts. It would be my pleasure to write a bit about some of those people whose bhakthi can't be described in words.

There was once a proficient scholar, who accepted a paralytic disease from his guru owing to his guru bhakthi. Not being able to tolerate the disease, he decided to goto the temple at Guruvayoor and composed each day approx 10 verses (decads) in Sanskrit about the greatness of the Guruvayoorappan for 100 days. At the end of 100 days, he got the vision of Sri Krishna of Guruvayoor and he was cured of his disease. The eminent scholar is none other than Narayana Bhattathiri and the work he composed became to be known as the beautiful Narayaneeyam , an abridged version of Srimad Bhagawatham. It is a gem of a work with profound Jnana, bhakthi and vibhakthi ( beauty of language).

Another great devotee of Lord that used to walk every month 100 kms to darshan the Guruvayoorappan. Once , he was attacked by robbers on his way to Guruvayoor. Sensing the approaching danger, he closed his eyes and cried out "Krishna Krishna". Immediately out of nowhere appeared the local king with his sword and fought the robbers away. The bhaktha immediately took out his ring and presented it to the King. The same night, the chied priest of Guruvayoor had a dream where Krishna appeared and told him that the next day he will find a ring on the idol and told him to take and give that ring to the devout bhaktha who will come tommorow.The next morning events happened exactly the same way and the devotee was totally flabbergasted to find that the ring the chief priest gave is the same ring he gave it to the local king who rescued him from the robbers. Then only he reailzed that it was the Lord himself who had rescued him. The devotee is none other than Poothanam,he author of the Malayala Gita or Jnana Pana, who once humbled Narayana bhattathiri in another incident.

Once there was a virtuous and a devout girl who used to bring garlands to the Lord every day. One day she was late and the temple got closed. Disappointed totally, the girls started to weep. Seeing her, Poonthanam gave her some words of comfort by telling her to keep the garland near the banyan tree since god is everywhere. Having convinced , she place the garlend near the banyan tree and left. The next morning , when the chief priest was removing the garlands , one garland alone got stuck to the idol. Seeing that , Poonthanam immediately noticed that the garland is the same as the one placed by the devout girl. The devout girl's name is Manjula and the banyan tree was later named as Manjulal.

Apart from such great bhakthas , the deity at Guruvayoor had always been adored by the elephants. Some of the elephants very simply extra-ordinary devout animals. Padmanabhan and Kesavan are two of the most remebered elephants. Padamanabhan was nick named "VeeraShringala" owing to his kingly, majestic yet humble nature. Kesavan was nicknamed , 'gajarajan' or the 'king of elephants' . Though Kesavan was more aggresive , he never caused any harm to others. Whenever he turned aggressive , he would run straight towards the the temple and circumambulate the temple . He would stop whenever a child or two crosses his way. He died on an Ekadasi day with his trunks stretched towards Gurvayoorappan. A 12 ft statue has been erected near the temple to commemorate him.

Irayimman Thampi

To conclude this post, I have to mention a few words about Iravivarman Thampi (popularly known as Irayimman thampi), the uncle of the great Maharaja of Travancore state, Swathi Thirunal. He is none other than the composer of the very popular lullaby song, "Omana Thingal Kidavo" , which he composed for the new born baby Swathi Thirunal . There is another compostion of his that was highly popularized by a bhagavatha and musician of Kerala, the late Vengalakural (bronze-voiced:)Chembai Vaidyanatha Bhagawathar. That composition, "Karuna Cheyvan Enthu Thamasam Krishna" , was composed by Irayimman on the Guruvayoorappan. It is a very beautiful song ,initially set up in Sri Raaga. It is a compostion that has a Karuna rasa inducing saahitya(lyrics) .

Once , during his concert in Sucheendram, Chembai almost lost his voice. He sought the help of numerous medical experts but none of them were able to cure him. Chembai ,immediately sought the help of Guruvaayoorappan, when he sung this soung aloud in the beautiful karuna rasa inducing raaga "Hari kambhoji". He immediately got back his voice with a never before brilliancy. Even now , his voice remains matchless. After that , he always concluded his concerts with that song. To commemorate his devotion for Guruvayoorappan ,each year, as part of Ekadasi celebrations, Chembai Sangetthostsavam is held.

The fun parts starts now..:) I am going to upload the above mentioned song as rendered by Chembai and a couple of others including the great Me;) . My personal favorite is Chembai's. His rendition is peerless. Even my attempt at this song is based on his version. Since the song is in Malayalam , for the sake of Tamil and other Telugu readers, I am aslo going to have the song transliteration and the meaning. My special thanks to Dr P.P Narayanswamy , who had the translation mailed to me on request.


karuNa ceyvAn entu tAmasam

iriyamman tampi krti

yadukula kAmbooji (shrI) tALam cApu


karuNa ceyvAn entu tAmasam krShNA
kazhalinE kai tozhunnEn


sharaNAgatanmArkkiShTa varadAnam ceytu cemmE
guruvAyUr puram tannil maruvumakhila durita haraNa bhagavan$


gurutara bhavasindhau duritasa~ncayamAkum
tiratannil muzhukunna naragatikkavalambam
marakata maNivaNNan hari tannE ennum tava
carita varNNanaN^N^aLil sakala munikaL paravatarivanadhunA

TRANSLATION (Thanks to Dr P.P Narayanswamy)

Why the delay in showing kindness, Lord Krishna,
I worship your feet with my folded palms.

Granting the desires of devotees who seek asylum in you,
You rest in Guruvayoor, oh Lord, remover of all sorrows.

Your chaste feet, lovingly caressed by the Lotus Maiden,
Whether I serve them with reverence from near
Or think of serving them from afar
To you, Whose greatness fills the universe,
This is a matter of indifference.

I have learned from the Sages who have extolled your exploits
That you, Hari, emerald like handsome Lord,
Are the refuge for the teeming humanity
Who live on the surf of the great ocean of suffering called life.

I see you in my heart, handsome as Cupid,
Your hair adorned with peacock feathers,
Your glances, a mixture of compassion and smile
Your chest showing Kousthabham and garlands of wild flowers
Your ankles adorned with jingling golden anklets.

Creator and protector of the worlds
Lord Padmanabha, who resides in Guruvayoor,
May it please you, without delay, with compassion,
To remove my illnesses like rheumatism
And bless me with health and prosperity.

Renditions :

1.KarunaCheyvan - Chembai ( For the carnatic music enthusiast)

2.KarunaCheyvan2 ( soft, cool , Sri ragam)
3.KarunaCheyvan3 ( by Unni Menon)
4.KarunaCheyvan-Me ( great voice ;)


Here is another rendering of the same song by Sri K.V. Narayana swamy, the disciple of Late Sri Ariyakudi Ramanuja Iyengar. Kindly bear with the quality of sound. Also, the song will actually start in the second half of the first mp3 file.

I would also like to encourage the reader to listen the song by following the lyrics and the meaning provided above for maximum enjoyment.

Karunacheyvan ,Shri KVN -PArt 1:

Karunacheyvan ,Shri KVN -PArt 2:

Let me conclude this Diwali Special post by offering my salutatuons to all the great bhakthas , with a special mention to Irayimman Thampi for composing a wonderful composition and of course , Chembai Bhagavathar. If not for him, I wouldnt have gotten a chance to enjoy this nectarine music. Finally, I meditate on the lotus-feets of Guruvayoorappan, who is none other than the Krishna -Vasudeva , the poornavataara of Sri Man Narayana , the destroyer of Narakaasura and all things that are dark and evil.

Hantha Bhaagyam JanAnAm , (Worderful indeed, is the fortune of the mankind)


Comments on "Karuna Cheyvan Enthu Thamasam Krishna"


Blogger thennavan said ... (12:19 PM) : 

Kandu kandangirikkum janangale,
Kandilennu varuthunnathum Bhavaan

Randu nalu dinam kodangoruthane,
Thandilethi naduthannathum Bhavaan

Malika mugalileriya mannante,
Tholil marappu kethunnathum Bhavaan

Krishna Krishna Mukunda Janardhanaa
Krishna Govinda Narayana Hare!

Wonderful post Krishna. Happy Deepavali :-) (vasudeva sutam devam, kamsa chanura mardanam, devaki paramanandam, krishnan vande jagat gurum)!


Blogger Arjuna_Speaks said ... (3:19 PM) : 

Happy Diwali again my dear friend :)..

Wonderful post - Read 80% - need to read another 20% properly :)..But I need to go to Guruvayoor one day..My only worry is that I need to remove my shirt inside the temple - which I can never do :(..Can I wear an angavasthiram and close my body and go?


Blogger TJ said ... (7:19 PM) : 

Happy Deepavali! That was an excellent post!!

The nirmalya darisanam at Guruvayoor is the ultimate delight!

And it was so nice to hear the song!


Blogger krishna said ... (9:51 PM) : 

@ Thennavan

Many thanks for bringing to the attention of the reader about those glorious verses of jnana paana.Guess more people should start tasting the nectarine pot :)

Belated Deepavali Wishes..Kindly bear with my late comment..


Blogger krishna said ... (9:59 PM) : 

Dear arjuna

Hope you had a light-filled deepavali day..

Many thanks

I guess the temple authorites are pretty strict about people wearing any kind of shirt or banyan. I don't think they are going to permit angavashtrams either. May be thev' eased out the rule a a bit.


Blogger krishna said ... (10:06 PM) : 

Dear Tj

Many thanks.

Kindly accept my belated diwali wishes. Hope you had a festive diwali day.

Yes, Nirmalya darisanam is definitely a treat to watch.Guess this protocol was established by Adi Sankaracharya.Accordingly, the temple opens at 3am in the morning

Which one of the version did you listen to ? I am sure that u didnt try mine:)


Blogger Kasthuri Srinivasan said ... (1:49 PM) : 

Dear Krishna,
Thanks for the virtual tour into this holy abode. Sri Guruvayoorappan should grace me to his holy abode soon just like He made me read this excellent post of yours.


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (4:43 AM) : 

Dear Krishna,
I was named Mukund right in front of Lord Guruvayoorappan. this is the name people at home use to address me.

nice post..

to walk around bare-chested in a temple is actually difficult even for me but after Tirupathi trip I am now confident that I can do it.



Blogger krishna said ... (7:58 PM) : 

Dear Kasthuri

Gonna have a protocol written to redirect your thanks to Sri Guruvaayoorappan himself. Let me hope that he gets impressed with the protocol and grants us the boon to get to worship him at Gurvayoor sooner.:)


Blogger krishna said ... (8:01 PM) : 

Dear Mukund

Great to know that. Actually, even I was born after my parents went to guruvaayoor seeking a male child. Sort of a coincidence:)


Blogger Arjuna_Speaks said ... (2:34 AM) : 

My dear Krishna:

Dedicating this comment to u :)

Guru Vayur Pura Sri Hari Krishna Narayana Gopal
Mukunda Madhava Murali Dhari Narayana Gopal
Madhava Madhusudana Hari Narayana Gopal
Mohana Murali Dhari Murari Narayana Gopal
Govardhana Giridhari Murari Narayana Gopal
Narayana Gopal Sai Narayana Gopal
Narayana Gopal Sathya Narayana Gopal

Chant the name of the Lord of Guruvayur;
Lord Hari, Krishna, Narayana, Gopal, Madhava,
Madhusudhana, Muralidhara, Govardhana Giridhari, Murari,
Mukunda and Sathya Sai Narayana

Listen to the song :


Blogger Jo said ... (9:14 AM) : 

Guruvayur temple is in my district. Last week I had a marriage to attend there. They do not let 'ahindus' entering inside the kovil. :(

I heard the Chempai (Vaidyanaada bhaagavatar) version of "Karuna cheivaan".


Blogger krishna said ... (5:11 PM) : 

Dear Arjuna

Thanks buddy for bringing it to my attention..There is nothing in this world that is greater than Hari Naama.

If u practice singing those name with bhava and raaga and taala ,it becomes naadopaasana(practice of naada,born out of pranava.considered equal to meditating on the Pranava), which is perhaps the easiest and shortest ways to Mukthi.


Blogger krishna said ... (5:26 PM) : 


Glad to know that u are from Thrissur. U are living too close yet too far from Guruvaayoorappan. Unfortunately , the social caste/religious system has formed in such a way that some of the good-minded people like you havent got a chance just like any other hindu. I am sure that no TRUE lover of GOD would like to enforce such conditions on anyone unless until there is a REASON behind it.

But ,there is no reason for you to actually worry about it. If u are devout enough , u can as well do what the great young girl Manjula did when the temple was already closed by the time she reached with her flowers. She simple left the flowers in front of the banjan tree (now known as Manjulal) as per the advice of the great bhaktha Poonthaanam.I am sure that KRishna would be more than pleased to find such a great bhaktha.


Blogger Jo said ... (4:57 AM) : 

Krishna, am not a devotee of Lord krishna, but he is a very manly God. I like him that way. What I wanted was to see the interior of the temple. I am interested in visiting Churches and Temples. Not that I believe in the concept, but for their architectural designs.

And thanks for the info on Manjulaal. I didn't know that before.


Blogger Ganesh said ... (9:46 AM) : 

Krishna great write up asusual
and thanks for your kinds words :)
Hopefully after proper practise I can render it.


Blogger krishna said ... (1:26 AM) : 

Thanks Ganesh :) try it and let me know. I am sure u can do a great job with ur voice.


Blogger Ramakrishnan said ... (1:19 PM) : 

Hi, you can visit my Chembai website

You can contact me at srkris@gmail



Blogger bhattathiri said ... (5:06 PM) : 

Your website is divine, beautiful, informative and


Blogger krishna said ... (5:32 PM) : 

Thanks bhattAthiri,

Glad you liked it. It's only because of HIS presence .

Let me know if you have a blog/website


Blogger bhattathiri said ... (4:07 PM) : 

Mind can be one's friend or enemy. Mind is the cause for both bondage and liberation. The word mind is derived from man to think and the word man derived from manu (sanskrit word for man).

"The Supreme Lord is situated in everyone's heart, O Arjuna, and is directing the wanderings of all living entities, who are seated as on a machine, made of the material energy."

There is no theory to be internalized and applied in this psychology. Ancient practices spontaneously induce what each person needs as the individual and the universal coincide. The work proceeds through intellectual knowledge of the playing field (jnana yoga), emotional devotion to the ideal (bhakti yoga) and right action that includes both feeling and knowledge(karma yoga). With ongoing purification we approach wisdom. The Bhagavad Gita is a message addressed to each and every human individual to help him or her to solve the vexing problem of overcoming the present and progressing towards a bright future. Within its eighteen chapters is revealed a human drama. This is the experience of everyone in this world, the drama of the ascent of man from a state of utter dejection, sorrow and total breakdown and hopelessness to a state of perfect understanding, clarity, renewed strength and triumph.


Blogger bhattathiri said ... (3:49 PM) : 

The Krishna idol is very unique in that it has four arms. Krishna, it is said, was seen with four arms only on very few occasions. He was seen thus at the time of his birth by his mother Devaki. He stood in his viswa-roopa in the hall of Kauravas and gave the inner-vision to Dhrthrastra, when he was negotiating for the Pandavas and He appeared with His four hands again before Arjuna during Gita-upadesa. The deity of Krishna in Guruvayur has four hands, with the upper right and left arms holding the chakra and the conch and the lower arms holding a lotus and a mace.


Blogger AMRITH said ... (8:26 PM) : 

karuna cheyvan yentho is a very wonderful and one of the best classical songs by Irayimman Thampi .if we here the song actually we are taken another world

narayana narayana


Blogger sandeep vishnu said ... (10:50 PM) : 

I love this . . I love My Lord Krishna. . ! Krishna will help the poor people. I need it from him.


Blogger sandeep vishnu said ... (3:40 AM) : 

Arjuna@ You Can Wear A Showl To Cover Your Body Inside The Temple, I Guess.


Blogger nAradA said ... (10:09 AM) : 

Chembai used to sing this song in "Yadukula KAmbOji" rAgam and not HarikAmbOji as mentioned in the article.


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