CLARIFICATION AND EXPLANATION
This is a clarification about the KOLaRu Thiruppadhigam
and Pachchai Padhigam of the Saivite Saint ThiruGnyanaSambandhar.
People usually say that the 'Thiru naLLARRuth thirup pathigam' is used to
invoke Siva's help in attenuating the evil effects of planets.
It is actually used for afflictions by SanaiSchara. People with Ashtama, Ardhashtama,
and Ezharai afflictions of Sani, recite this particular pathigam. It is also
known as the 'Pachchaip pathigam' and is involved in a particular miracle
called 'analvAdham' performed by Sambandhar.
They also say that Tiru Gnyana Sambandhar's Tevaram hymn 'KOLaRu Thiruppadhigam'
pleads for Siva's protection from planetary wrath. Is there a translation
available for these padhigams?
So far I have not come across the translation of any full Tevara pathigam.
We do see many pathigams which have been transliterated. And we also see certain
verses from padhigams which have been translated. But have all the padhigams
been translated? I have not seen them as such. Not as
yet, any way. We don't even see some form of brief introduction to
all the Thervarams which might be a slight consolation.
The 'kOL aRu thirup pathigam' is not just for removing the bad effects of
planets and stars. It is not just for that purpose alone. It is more than
It is used as a reassuarance against all forms of ills, evils, harms,dangers,
obstacoles, and evil effects including the disasterous effects of planets
For the true beleivers of the Supreme Lord Siva, all the various forms of
evils will certainly turn good and do good. That is what is reiterated again
and again in every one of the verses of the KOLaRu Thirup Padhigam.
The verses enumerate the evils and proclaim that they will turn good instead
That is the gist of the whole hymn.
Lets us do a brief analysis of the padhigam.
Before that let us see the background and circumstances under which it was
composed and sang.
Thirunavukkarasar lived in the 7th century during the time of Mahendravarma
Pallavar. Although hailing from a staunch Saivite family, he turned into a
Jain. But due to the beseeching of his sister, he was afflicted with intractable
pain due to bowel problem. This was healed when he saught refuge with Lord
This incenced the Jains and they provoked the Pallava Emperor. But Thirunavukkarasar
defiedhim. For that he was punished with death. But Lord Siva saved him with
His miracles. Navukkarasar devoted his life to the service of Lord Siva. Mahendravarman
became a Saivite.
ThirgnyanaSambandhar was a prodigious genius child who was fed with the Divine
Milk of Parvathi; he became a child saint and devoted his life to Lord Siva's
During their lives they met each other several times.
On one such occassion, Sambandhar called Navukkarasar as 'Appar' and that
name stuck and became more popular.
Once they met in a place called ThirumaRaik kAdu or Vedharanyam.
Here they were met by the prime minister of the Pandya country. He was sent
as an emissary by the queen, Mangaiyarkkarasi who complained that the King
was a Jain under the influence of the Jain monks. She wanted Sambandhar to
come to Madura and rid the country of the Jains.
When Appar heard this, he made his objection saying that the Jains were very
cruel and evil and that he himself had been ill-treated by them and that he
himself could not convert the Pandya country.
But Sambandhar smiled and sang the Thiruppadhigam which came to be called
'KOL' means planets and also evil. 'aRu' means 'that which cuts, shreds, separates'.
The Thirupadhigam which removes evil, ill, or harm or obstacles. If the word
kOL' from the the phrase 'KOLaRu', is simply translated as meaning just planets
only, then 'kOLaRu' would mean, 'destruction of the planets'.
That is not what it means. In this case, the word 'kOL' means ills and evils;
'kOLaRu' - destruction of ills and evils and obstacles.
He sang this to dispell any evil or obstacle that lay waiting in the Pandya
Now let us go to the song proper.
Sambandhar mentions about the planets, ie., the nine of them in the
first verse. Sun, Moon, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, Saturn, Rahu, and Kethu.
For a devotee of Siva who has Parvathi as His half, these will become good.
The last lines of every verse contains this pledge and assuarance.
Each verse describes Siva and Parvathi together and emphasises about
whomsoever is an adiyar or devotee of them whatver is further mentioned in
the verse, would not cause any harm but would be good to them.
In the second verse, he says that the ninth, tenth, seventeenth, eighteenth,
twenty-fourth of the twenty seven asterisms would do good for Siva's adiyars.
In the third, he pledges the help of other deities like Lakshmi, and Durga.
In the fourth, some natural calamities like mass death, fire, fatal epidemics
In the fifth, he talks about demons, raksasas, and more natural disasters
like thunder and lightening.
In the sixth, all the dangerous animals.
In the seventh, illnesses and diseases.
In the eighth, cruel tyrants like Ravana.
In the ninth, he says that Vishnu and Brahma would help the devotees of Siva.
In the tenth, he curses the followers of alien heretical doctrines.
In the last and eleventh verse called 'thiru kadaik kAppu' he swears by Siva
that those who recite this pathigam will rule over the heavens.
This pathigam can be said to be the earliest precursor to all the "kavacam'"
hymns that are to be found in Tamil.
Although it was named as the 'kOL aRu thirup pathigam', which loosely,
roughly, and wrongly translated would mean 'pathigam which dispels the planets',
in its true nature, is for dispelling all ills.
P.S. The words 'catastrophe' and 'disaster' are both derived from the word
'Aster' - star.
What we do not fear, cannot harm us.
Be free from fear.
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