SrI: SrImathE SatakOpAya nama: SrImathE rAmAnujAya nama: SrImath varavaramunayE nama:
SlOkam – Original
rAjavidhyA rAjaguhyam pavithram idham uththamam |
prathyakshAvagamam dharmyam susukham karthum avyayam ||
word-by-word meaning (based on puththUr krishNamAchArya swAmy’s thamizh translation)
idham – this bhakthi yOga
rAja vidhyA – best among vidhyA (knowledge/path)
rAja guhyam – best among secrets
uththamam pavithram – best among those which remove sins
prathyakshAvagamam – one that helps in realisation (of me, krishNa)
dharmyam – being the means to attain me
susukham karthum – easy to perform
avyayam – imperishable (even after bestowing the results)
Simple Translation (based on puththUr krishNamAchArya swAmy’s thamizh translation)
This bhakthi yOga is the best among vidhyA (knowledge/path), the best among secrets, the best among those which remove sins, the one that helps in realisation (of me, krishNa), the means to attain me, easy to perform and imperishable (even after bestowing the results).
Rendering based on ALkoNdavilli gOvindhAchArya swAmy’s English translation of gIthA bhAshyam
‘Sovereign knowledge is this, and sovereign mystery —sanctifying and best; conducive to realization; inseparable from Dharma; most agreeable to practise; and unfailing.’
Rāja-vidyā=Kingly knowledge, or knowledge most supreme.
Rāja-guhyam=Kingly mystery, or mystery of the highest kind.
Kings are those of large and deep hearts. So is this kingly knowledge one, appropriate to those having such minds (or hearts). Only people of lofty minds possess the discretion as to what things they must keep secret (or sacred from profane view). To these is this knowledge, a sacred mystery, pure and,
Pavitram=sanctifying=having the virtue to cleanse all taints which prevent My being gained.
Pratyaksh-āvagamam. Avagamam is that which is apprehended, and therefore an object of apprehension, or direct perception1. Hence that fact which becomes a real perceived fact in consciousness is pratyaksh-āvagamam. The import of this is that, worshipped in loving devotion (bhakti), I immediately reveal Myself to the devotee. Then, also, it is,
Dharmyam=that which is inseparable from Dharma, (righteousness, virtue). The quality of virtue or righteousness is known to be the means to effect spiritual consummation (niśśreyas).
In itself, by very nature, the practice of virtue is happiness. But when it is found capable of making Me present (or revealed to the devotee), it is, while itself a most pleasant quality to cultivate, is besides the way leading to the exquisitely blissful Goal, Myself.
Hence it is su-sukham=most pleasant or agreeable to practice. Being so congenial, it (the knowledge I am going to reveal) is one which must, in gratefulness and love, be acceptable. (It is also),
Avyayam=akshayam= unfailing=imperishable. For, God-love (bhakti), is one which does not cease as soon as I am reached, but it continues unabatingly thereafter.
I reckon, that, when to a loving devotee of this kind I deliver My Own Self entirely, even then that is no sufficient compensation for the love he has borne (for Me). I reckon too that even when I have given My own Self to them, I have done little or nothing for him. That is how I think of My beloved lovers.
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- Krishna Incarnate is here considered as Virtue itself having taken that Form, which could be actually
seen and felt by men. In Bhāgavata, Rudra praises Kṛishṇa thus: ‘Namo dharmāya bṛihate Kṛishṇāy-ākunṭha medhase.’ Also Bhārata says: ‘Kṛishṇam dharmam sanatanam’. ↩