Soundarya Lahari Series (Article 20) : Verse 18 – “Victory in love” – Written by Hema


Tannucchaya bhihi te – with shades of Your bodily form

Taruna tarani srisarani bhihi divam – the sky thus most tenderly and totally overcovered by the dappled dawn

Sarvam urvim – as also the whole earth

Arunima nimagnam – as immersed in sheer magenta glory

Smarati yah


– By the dappled light of dawn belonging to Your body

– The sky enriched with the glory of tender cirrus formation of sky light

– (With) the whole earth

– Immersed in magenta colourfulness

– He who recollects

– For him it happens

– (Maidens) having beautiful wild deer startled eyes

– Inclusive of Urvasi become won-over

– How many, how many may there not be

– Heavenly damsels

Once again in this 18th verse also we have come across about devi’s color. We will keep hearing about the crimson red. The beauty of your form is like the rays key of the rising sun bathe us in heaven and earth in it’s crimson red. Your beauty is in that form. The sadhaka who meditates upon you in this form and merges with you filled with devotion and emotion, many heavenly dancers and apsaras like urvashi, get fascinated with you. That is the attractive personality he gets. Such sadhaka attracts everyone. The message conveyed through this is very simple. The sadhaka who meditates on deep red attracts immense energy. That immense energy attracts everything and everyone in the world. By meditating in this form the sadhaka becomes youthful. When sadhaka is showered with divine energy and graced by Devi. He becomes vibrant with the power of your energy. Red color not only symbolises energy but also refers to compassion. Mother is always compassionate to her children. Shankara had mentioned in his devi aparadha stotram “Kuputro Jayate Kumata na bhavati” It is his experience about the devi that was put in the above form. So the sadhaka is bestowed with redness by Ambal and always her compassion is with him. A child enjoys a being with his mother. Motherhood remains the same when it comes to all of us. The red color indicates the sukshmathi sukshma kundalini form. Red also indicates subtlest kundalini form and kundalini rests at muladhara. When someone wants to contemplate on muladhara due to its color. This radiance attracts the apsaras and celestial bodies. Though the apsaras are attracted to sadhaka they fear to go anywhere near the sadhaka. Shankara expresses the fearful eyes of deer to indirectly indicate that when anyone gets attracted to the sadhaka, they are scared of the radiance and are scared to go anywhere near him. Eyes of the deer in the forest look very red. Many times in soundarya Lahari, this verse is conveying very subtly the kama kala beeja which is EEm. This is described in verse 19. This mantra refers to the second kutta or kamaraja kutta or madhya kutta. There are two versions. At this stage of kind of sidhi or some accomplishment of the sadhaka, another portion is when everything is attracted to him how does a sadhaka manage it? It is the difficult stage where he has to balance everything. Once a sadhaka reaches this stage, he might attain some siddhis and it is the last stage in atma sakshatkara. Once a sadhaka realizes that he has sidhis that would be the end of liberation, jeevan mukthi, atma sakshatkara. This is a serious warning for people who are in Srividya upasana as it stops that person in his spiritual growth. Analogy for this can be given with the following example. When traveling in a steep hill, there will be hair pin bends and these hair pin bends are dangerous. Not only sadhaka and sadhaki, they have to be very careful. Everyone is attracted by us on this sidhi path. 

Kanchi paramacharya also spoke on Soundarya Lahari mantras. Here he connects to Lalitha Sahasranama and with physical form of Devi. 

द्यद्भानु सहस्राभा, चतुर्बाहु समन्विता ।

रागस्वरूप पाशाढ्या, क्रोधाकाराङ्कुशोज्ज्वला ॥ 2 ॥

ಉದ್ಯದ್ಭಾನು ಸಹಸ್ರಾಭಾ, ಚತುರ್ಬಾಹು ಸಮನ್ವಿತಾ ।

ರಾಗಸ್ವರೂಪ ಪಾಶಾಢ್ಯಾ, ಕ್ರೋಧಾಕಾರಾಂಕುಶೋಜ್ಜ್ವಲಾ ॥ 2 ॥

ఉద్యద్భాను సహస్రాభా, చతుర్బాహు సమన్వితా ।

రాగస్వరూప పాశాఢ్యా, క్రోధాకారాంకుశోజ్జ్వలా ॥ 2 ॥

द्यद्भानु सहस्राभा, refers to rising sun. This indicates that she is very red. The swachanda tantra says that Lalitha the  universal form, is said to be herself is parashakti and red color is Vimarsha.This also is confirmed in vamakeshvara tantra. The unmanifest devi,  and if it manifests then it is red. Formless is her real form. Thus prakasha and vimarsha aspects together mix sthula, sukshma and para (Physical, subtle and Supreme).Paradevatha is supreme. The subtle form consists of mantras. Physical form is rupa (a form). Mantra is not the prayer or the praise of that divinity. Mantra is the sound form the divinity.

Mantra has rishi, chandas, beeja shakthi, and the devi on which mantra is mediated on. Then again the mantra also has kilaka. Now it has anganyasa and karanyasa and dhyana sloka with mantra is to meditate on physical form and as you go on doing japa of the mantra bring the physical form into sound form and as a result the physical form gets absorbed into sound form and this is the purpose of mantra japa. The para is called mental,Mantra shastra refers to real, own and para is that. It is neither sound form nor physical form. We begin with physical form and then it is turned into sound form and the sound form is again absorbed into self. After the mantra japa, we have to chant dhyana sloka to come back. In the process of mantra japa one should become part of himself and that is mantra sadhana. 

What made Paramacharya to mention this ? Soundarya lahari talks about usha kala bhaskara rising sun. Oh! Devi you are the usha kala bhaskara.It is a magnificent glory and splendor of the rays of the sun. This irresistible reaction draws attention of not only the beings on the earth but also deva loka, apsaras like , Menaka, Thilothma, Drichathi, Swayamprabha. When he mentioned the usa kirana he talked about uhsa. Usha is said to be the sun’s wife. They possessed the eyes of a lotus leaf. Who’s eyes entice the sadhaka with their dances. The apsaras employ themselves to entice severe ssdhakas. In such situations even the renowned sages become slaves. Paramacharya has referred to Usha devi here. He explains Usha devi. He refers to sukta 75 to 81 in Rig Veda. Usha’s illumination started spreading to all directions and evil forces disappeared into darkness.Your golden rays are very peculiar and filled with divinity. Usha is the annavati. She is the empress of food and prosperity. She is praised by rishis and compares days and nights.Even usha kala, invocations of deva from outstanding hymns. Cows await the usha kala to shower the animals and cows for their progeny and prosperity. The redness here refers to Usha which signifies energy, compassion and kundalini. This is the stage on the journey towards atma sakshatkara. We become vibrant and tejasvi. We have to be careful at this point of Stage. The apsaras will be fascinated by the sadhaka.

Form of devi and her color and by meditating on her in that form what would be the result of it. Everything will come under the control of the sadhka. Crimson red is referred here. None of the bhashyakara refer to Usha. Kanci Paramacharya mentioned about Usha wherever crimson red is talked in Soundarya Lahari.Rig Veda Suktas. Usha is described and praised in Rig veda suktas. Each Sukta has many stotras also. He mentions Usha as referred to in Rig Veda. In all sanskrit texts we have chandas, The vedas have different meters as per sanskrit grammar. There was never writing in olden days. Rishis get the mantra and the disciples chant and keep it in memory. Hence Veda was given raga to remember. By giving sruthi to vedas, they have taken care of the chandas and meaning is not disturbed. A particular rhythm gives energy. Understanding vedas should not stop at chanting with Raga.Understanding of those verses is very important.

The rig veda had spoken about the origin of the universe, nature of divine and metaphysical issues . The very first mantra speaks about Agni nile purohitam. Agni has made them know to probe into what this universe is. Yajurveda hsa given various rituals to perform and they are prescribed. Samaveda, many number of verses are there, only 75 verses are new one and rest are from rig veda. The same rig veda verses are chanted in different tunes in sama veda and rig veda. Meaning of the verse is more important than the tune. Then coming to Atharvana veda. It has a lot of formulas of rituals. The rishi is Atharva, he has seen the mangras. If we believe that tantra shastra is much older than vedas. So atharva veda has borrowed its formulas from tantra shastra. This introduction is for Usha. Usha is part of rig veda and it speaks about the origin of universe, consciousness and it has been very well described in veda. 

Shankara Bhagavadpadha did not venture on writing bhashyam on veda. He gave bhashya on Upanishads. Upanishads have dealt on one subject. We can see repetition which is nothing but about Bramhan, atman, omkara. All upanishads explain only that and that is why we call vedanta. The dawn which is heaven born has opened up the wheel of darkness by the truth. Asath is the darkness and sath is the truth. The vastness is seen only when ushe comes. She has opened the wheel of darkness and all that is unloved. THe wheel of darkness is that which is against love. She manifests the path of great journey for liberation. 

 The unity of love takes after some separation between families, wife and husband and friends gives a different experience. The joy of being one or the primordial entity before the manifestation of the universe separates itself from Shiva and Shakti. The separation takes place. The separation is explained in daksha yagna and Parvathi getting into Daksha’s yagna kunda. Then the two become Kameshwara and Kameshwari couple, then the same entity becomes as its children. The root entity is white that becomes red, that is love or lust or erotic love (shringara) is said to be red. The root of creation is red, that is why the root of chakras is red, the root of energy is red. The primordial entity had no desire and was inspired by desire that is what the spandana takes place and this is the prime cause of creation. Creation is said to be red. One who performs the act of creation, Brahma is red. The sexaul act is referred to as red. There is life in all living beings. One is prana and the other is blood. In Sanskrit blood is rakta  which means red. Even the poetic gift is also understood to be red. The creation is not created by poets , the creation is happening in all of us by our thoughts, desires, some are nurtured, dissolved, vanished. We have Brahma, Vishnu, Maheshwara and everything becomes empty and starts over. It is only her Compassion. Pramacharya tells that compassion becomes by intense love. That is the highest form of love. It is flowing from the fountain. The entity called shambhu colorless parabrahman assumes the form of Aruna for the purpose of protecting the world which indeed becomes Aruna out of his compassion as Karuna. In the light of your redness falling on Shiva who is bright as crystal makes him the embodiment of love, Shringara. Satva is white ,rajas is red. Rajas is inferior to Satva. Love is part of dualism. Love is rajasic, that is the form of love, compassionate cannot be known with white. We must advance from wrong type of rajas and reach the higher rajas that is brahman and which are beyond all the qualities. Veda and upanishads are not just mantras, they are ocean of knowledge. 

Chanting procedure and Nivedyam( offerings to the Lord) : If one chants this verse 1000 times every day for 45 days, and offers Honey,milk and thambula as nivedhyam , one can achieve everything in the matters of love. 

Sri Gurubhyo namah

Sri Matre Namah


Note: The articles written are the extracts from daily online Jnana Yajna conducted by ‘Atmanandanatha’ on Soundarya Lahari

Link to Article 1: Introduction to Soundarya Lahari

Link to Article 2: Synopsis of first 41 verse of Soundarya Lahari

Link to Article 3: Verse1 of Soundarya Lahari explanation

Link to Article 4: Verse 2 Soundarya Lahari explanation

Link to Article 5: Verse 3 Soundarya Lahari explanation

Link to Article 6: Verse 4 Soundarya Lahari explanation

Link to Article 7: Verse 5 Soundarya Lahari explanation

Link to Article 8: Verse 6 Soundarya Lahari explanation

Link to Article 9: Verse 7 Soundarya Lahari explanation

Link to Article 10: Verse 8 Soundarya Lahari explanation

Link to Article 11: Verse 9 Soundarya Lahari explanation

Link to Article 12: Verse 10 Soundarya Lahari explanation

Link to Article 13: Verse 11 Soundarya Lahari explanation

Link to Article 14: Verse 12 Soundarya Lahari explanation

Link to Article 15: Verse 13 Soundarya Lahari explanation

Link to Article 16: Verse 14 Soundarya Lahari explanation

Link to Article 17: Verse 15 Soundarya Lahari explanation

Link to Article 18: Verse 16 Soundarya Lahari explanation

Link to Article 19: Verse 17 Soundarya Lahari explanation

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