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Friends, today we are going to see an interesting guest post - by Mrs. Parvadha Vardhini Murali Krishnan. She continues to amaze us with her talents and a recent addition is her wonderful blog Ponniyin selvi . One way it was the blog posts that made me seek her help to write about two very interesting miniature sculptures from Tirumalpuram ruined Vishnu temple. Her she goes..

I am a Chartered Accountant, living in Kuwait. Currently I am a fulltime homemaker. Just like many of our friends here, I was also impressed very much by the great novel Ponniyin Selvan written by Amarar Kalki. Out of interest, when I searched in the internet, I found the yahoo group Ponniyin Selvan Varalatru Peravai and joined in it. Through the group, I got introduced to many of our friends. Same way, I got introduced to this site “Poetry in Stone” and Mr. Vijay. From then on, I am a regular reader of this site.

Our friend Mr. Vijay sent me a photograph of a sculpture and asked me if I can do a guest post on it. I was very hesitant and I told him, I do not know about sculpture, what do I write? He said, let me send you the picture, have a look at it and then decide. But once I saw the picture of the sculpture I was very impressed. All of us like children; just imagine if the Lord Almighty is in the form of a child, as Krishna, who wouldn’t love him? Taking this as the willingness of Lord Krishna himself, I write this post.

tirumalpuram+temple

I am only going to say a story; a story well known to all of us. Yes, it is the story which comes to our mind seeing the sculpture.

location

Krishna is a mischievous boy. Even though he was in a flourishing house of Nandagopa, with the pots and vessels filled with butter, he always went to others’ house to eat them. The ladies of Gokulam complained about this to Yasodha. Yasodha got furious. Seeing that she’s angry, Krishna wouldn’t come in front of her. Then she calls him with affection, saying that she would feed him with milk. And when he came nearby, she caught hold of him and tied him with a rope to a mortar. Since he was tied in his belly with the rope, he’s called as Damodhara (Thambu + Udharan)

adhirum kadal niRa vaNNanai Aychchi
madhuramulaiyUtti vanjsiththu vaiththu
padhaRappadAmE pazhandhAm pAl Arththa
udharam irundhavA kANIrE
oLivaLaiyIr vandhu kANIrE

(Periyazhwar Thirumozhi – Mudhar pathu – Irandam Thirumozhi – Verse 9)

Yasodha who called Krishna, the mischievous boy like the waves of the ocean, and who was of the same colour of the sea, saying that she would feed him with sweet milk, tied him with an old rope found nearby. See the beauty of Krishna’s belly which has a scar due to tying him with the rope. Oh maiden, who are wearing the twinkling bangles, come over and see the beauty of Krishna’s belly with a scar.

Guess Children will always be children and parents will always be parents. Lets take a look at the depiction in stone now.

krishna+tied+to+ural

Now, we go to act 2. What happened next. Yasodha after tying him in a mortar went inside the house. Krishna was silent for a while. But then, he couldn’t stay quiet anymore. He pulled the mortar and came out of the house. He got an idea to come out of the rope. He saw two big Arjuna trees outside his house. He thought to himself, If only I go in between these trees, then the mortar cannot come to the other side and the rope will get cut on its own and then I can be freed. So, he pulled the mortar and went in between the trees and pulled the mortar with all his strength! But amazingly, the two Arjuna trees, unable to withstand the strength of Krishna, fell on the ground. And two Devakumaras emerged from the fallen trees.

NalakUbara and MaNigriiva were the Devakumaras; they were the sons of Kubera. Out of pride on the matchless prosperity they had, they went to a pond along with Kandharva ladies to play in the water. The sage Naradha, was passing the way. Seeing the sage, the Kandharva ladies were scared and immediately wore their robes and saluted him. Whereas the sons of Kubera, since they had drunk extremely and out of pride, neither did they notice the presence of the sage Naradha nor did they bother to wear their robes. The sage grew angry on their activities and cursed them to become Arjuna trees in the earth. The sons of Kubera realized their position and apologized to the sage and requested for the way out of the curse. Naradha took pity on them and said that when Lord Narayana takes the incarnation of Krishna, their curse will end and they can return to their abodes.

Krishna, knowing all this, pushed the trees to the ground and released the sons of Kubera out of their curse. Nalakoopa and Manikreeva, prayed to the Lord and returned to their abodes.

perumAvuralil piNippuNdirundhu ang
kirumAmarudham iRuththavippiLLai
kurumAmaNippUN kulAvith thigazhum
thirumArvirundhavA kANIrE
seeyizhaiyIr vandhu kANIrE .

(Periyazhwar Thirumozhi – Mudhar pathu – Irandam Thirumozhi – Verse 10)

Tied by Yasodha on to a mortar, due to his mischievous activities, Krishna crawled between the two huge Arjuna trees and broke them. Oh Ladies wearing bright jewels, come and see the radiant chest of Krishna which has Lakshmi, Kowsthubam and the Tulsi Mala adorned.

Arunagiri Nathar, in his Thirupughazh recites as

parivoduma kizhnthi Rainju maruthidaitha vazhnthu ninRa
paramapatha naNpa ranpin marukOnE

He, as a child, crawled in between the Arjuna trees that worshiped Him with love and ecstasy; He is the great friendly Lord residing in the blissful heaven; and You are the love-filled nephew of that Lord VishNu!

Look at the beautiful Krishna who is tethered to the mortar and is pulling it. Also look at the sons of Kubera, Nalakoopa and Manikreeva, who stood as Arjuna trees and were relieved out of their curse.

Look at the beauty of the miniature sculptures which narrates the divine stories for us. The fun in spotting these beauties.

tirumalpuram+temple
tirumalpuram
tirumalpuram+location

Try to decipher them

miniature+sculpture
size

That’s the size and see how the trees have been depicting with faces at the bottom.

do+you+notice+a+face
krishna+destroying+2+tree demons
notice+the+face

Weren’t the Silpis so great that they could bring such creativity in such a restrained space and continue to impart divinity in their work!

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Category: Sculpture

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, January 12th, 2011 at 13:14 and is filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

8 Comments so far

Shash
  1  

And the details are about a millimetre across… Now, that’s precision!

January 12th, 2011 at 13:42
Dhivakar
  2  

“பத்துடை யடியவர்க் கெளியவன் பிறர்களுக் கரிய
வித்தகன் மலர்மகள் விரும்பும்நம் அரும்பெற லடிகள்
மத்தறுகடைவெண்ணெய் களவினில் உரலிடை யாப்புண்டு
எத்திறம் உரலினோ டிணைந்திருந் தேங்கிய எளிவே

நம்மாழ்வார்

கண்ணன அடியவர்க்கு எளியவன். ஆனால் கண்ணன் சிற்பங்கள் தமிழகத்தில் அரியதுதான்.. அரிய சிற்பங்கள். ‘பட்டய கணக்கர்’ பட்டையைக் கிளப்பியிருக்கிறார். வாழ்த்துகள்.

January 12th, 2011 at 13:47
Kathie B.
  3  

Wonderful story, no I didn’t know about Kubera’s disrespectful sons.Thank you, Mrs. Vardhini. By the way, what’s the random image in the cage, today?

January 12th, 2011 at 19:15
  4  

அருமை அருமை…நல்ல பதிவு.

இத்துனூண்டு சிற்பத்திற்குள் எவ்வளவு பெரிய கதை!

January 12th, 2011 at 22:28
Mrs.Vetri Manian
  5  

Apart from being an artisan, the persons who have sculpted this, should have been also meditative and very much experienced, so as to compress all the incidents pertaining to the story within such a small space.’The scar in the tummy’ is really wonderful, both in the text and the sculpture!.

January 13th, 2011 at 6:33
  6  

Parvadha - good write! I liked the Thirupugazh icing :)

January 14th, 2011 at 7:30
  7  

Thank you everyone for your valuable feedback. And special thanks to Mr. VJ for giving me this opportunity.

Regards
Vardhini

January 14th, 2011 at 12:29
  8  

அருமையான வர்ணனைக்கு நன்றி. சிற்பத்தின் அழகும் கண்ணைக் கவர்கிறது. நன்றி.

January 14th, 2011 at 12:45