Sunday, July 24, 2011

Islam and Kothai...

I tread this path carefully.. why is that all of a sudden I started this comparison? How is kothai related to Islam? She adored the deities of Srivilliputtur, Sri rangam, Tirupati and Tirumaliruncholai. She ultimately became one with the reclining lord of Sri rangam. She even proffered a hundred measures of butter and another hundred measures of akkara adisil ( a sweet dish made of rice , ghee and jaggery) to the lord of Tirumaliruncholai, if her union with lord of Sri rangam was possible. She pleads with one god for her union with the same god in another name in another place. Isn’t this what the prophet had rejected?  He called upon to submit to the one and only God. While our girl, appeals to the cupid( Manmatha) to interfere on her behalf for her union with her lord. In another verse, where she dreams of her marriage with her lord, she tells Goddess Durga , lord Indra were from  the bride’s side siring the  nuptial ceremony. She involves so many dieties, but she is clear in attaining the one and the only lord..Kannan.
If I google search the meaning of Islam, it says that islam is derived from a root word- salema, or surrender. With further search, the first verse of Qur’an and the 29th pasuram of Kothai’s tiruppavai sounds similar..
To compare those verses..
The Opening( Al- Fatihah)
....Iyakka na’budu wa iyyaka nasta’in
Sirat alladhina an’amta ‘alayhim..

( Thee only do we serve; thee alone do we ask for help.
.....Not the path of those who incur Thy wrath)
The opening is the first chapter of qur’an
Of kothai’s verse
உந்தன்னோடு , உற்றோமே ஆவோம், உனக்கே நாம் ஆட்செய்வோம் 
மற்றை நம் காமங்கள் மாற்றேலோரெம்பாவாய்..,
(  we belong unto thee ,and thee only do we serve,
I pray, bless us from veering into other desires)
Isn’t this a total submission, a surrender to the One and only lord. Perfect example of salema? Isn’t Kothai the embodiment of salema of south India? Oh, but we have Mira bai beyond the Vindhyas..

akkara adisil.. thanks..

(Actually kothai writes.. today, forever, in all our births.. we belong unto thee.. and thee only we serve.. this inspired me to write this following writeup.)

I am yours, you are mine..
What does but come between us?
You sent people to rejoice
When I first opened my eyes
And when my eyes remain closed
I wouldn’t hear all those wails..
Then,I wouldn’t have a tongue
To say your sweet thousand names
Nor  an eye to see your form
To behold all those purest thoughts
Melt in you, the greater glow
Or be a dot , in darkness though..
I would be yours and you are mine..
till you send me forth again..

(Hope, Yvonne and Hephzibah should say what their scriptures say about surrender... )


  1. It is a wonderful verse and enjoyed reading.

    Have a happy and peaceful Sunday.

  2. That’s a lot of theological talk… and I believe there is lot more to it than we read on google… that’s how I guess it s not in classes …. And then the element of faith..!!
    Thanks for the information nevertheless :D

  3. I am so glad I checked your blog today for your post is so interesting and I thank you for the translation. such a beautiful verse. I am taking some time off of the 'blogsphere' just posted that today but I couldn't help but read yours.

    the line where you say 'To say your sweet thousand names' just triggers a question for me, do we not all pray to the same God/Lord? The God of love, goodness, salvation etc. The God of many names. That brings me to another question, I wonder what religion God is? wonderful poem!

    Anyways...there are many verses in my holy bible that mention surrendering I picked this one because it talks of trust and trust is to surrender

    Psalm 18:2
    The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower. King James Version

    thank you for inviting us to share such a universal belief, adithyasaravana

    great thoughts manifest into great words

  4. by NRI GIRL..Hello Doc: I have been trying in vain once again to post some comments on your post.

    So,decided to email the same comment instead:

    First of all, a very funny thing happend which I must share with you.... I read the name in title as 'Kotthai' (with a 'ko','th' and a 'thai' in Tamil) and wondering who is this person we have never heard about. Only when I finished reading the article suddenly it dawned on me it is 'Ko' 'dhai' you are talking about...
    I find it funny because I am reading Indian names as a Westerner would read them...

    Okay, now coming to the point, it is interesting how different people have associated similar feelings with God irrespective of religion.

    In the Holy Bible too a complete book(Song of Solomon) is written by King Solomon as a dialogue or duet if you will between Christ and His bride the Church.
    Here's a link to the online version of the book in case someone would be interested to check it out: Song of Solomon
    After all this writing, if your blog doesn't let me post the comment, that's it! :)

  5. @yvonne.. thank you for your prompt response..
    @ ramesh..ennamo konja naala mayakkama irukkuthu.. pondaatti thittaama iruntha sari.. eppadiyo pongannu thanni thelichu vittuttaa pola..
    @deeps.yeah.. deeps.. the element of faith.. isn't it? I like people who are firm to their faith, agnostics or gnostics.. Periyar too firmly believed in whatever he told, that there is no god.Is He disturbed?
    @ Hope..yes.. what religion is god? if you tell love.. I tell love by different names.. so always there is a diversification as to how each one perceives him.He is what religion what we believe that He is.I read the psalm with tears in my eyes..
    @ NRI girl..somehow i have to subvert this stupid google.. I read the link.. and i could associate with so many pasurams.. hmm..everyone of us are blind..till our inner eyes open.( romba bore adikka vekkiraena?)

  6. hahah...paaavaam..ellathukum pondatiye blame pannathingo...(ingeyum athe kathaithan..but let's not talk here..they may read..ahaha)