by Damodara Rao Dasu

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sogasu chooDa - kannaDa gowLa - roopakam

In this kruti Tyagaraja described the handsome personality of Rama, comparing him to Manmadha (cupid). He also says that Rama is worshipped by Siva and other sages.

P sogasu chooDa taramA nee || Oh Rama, is it possible to describe your beauty?
AP niga niga manuchu kapOla yugamu chE merayu mOmu || Your face is shining with glossy cheeks.
C amarArchita pada yugamO abhaya pradakara yugamO
kamaneeya tanu nindita kAma kAmaripunuta nee ||
Aren't those the feet worshipped by celestial Gods?
Aren't those the hands that protect us from all our fears?
He is more handsome than Manmadha (cupid). He is worshipped by Siva.
C vara bimba samAdhAra mO vakuLa sumambula yuramO
kara dhruta Sara kOdanDa marakatAnga vara maina ||
His lips are red like Bimba fruits. His chest is covered by Vakula flowers.
He has a bow and arrow in his hand. His body shines like emerald.
C chiru navvO mungurulO mari kannula tETO
vara tyAgarAjArchita vandaneeya iTuvanTi ||
His smile, his locks on forehead and the brightness of his eyes are adorable.
He is worshipped by Tyagaraja.

sangeeta jNAnamu - dhanyAsi - Adi

In this kruti, Tyagaraja tells that proficiency in music itself without devotion to God is not the right path for salvation.

P sangeeta jNAnamu bhakti vinA sanmArgamu galadE manasA || Is the knowledge of music without devotion to God the right path? Oh my heart.
AP bhrungi naTESa sameeraja ghaTaja ma
tanga nAradAdulupAsimchE ||
The incessant prayers of seers like Bhrungi, Natesa, Anjaneya, Agastya, Matanga, Narada and others show us the right path.
C nyAyA nyAyamulu telusunu jagamulu
mAyA maya mani telisunu durguNa
kAya jAdi shadripula jayinchE
kAryamu telusunu tyAgarAjunikE ||
They knew what is Dharma (righteousness) and Adharma, the delusive nature of this world and the way to conquer the six enemies within ourself (i.e. craving, anger, delusion, lust, greed and envy).
Tyagaraja knows this truth from them.

Sree gaNapatini - sourAshTra - Adi

In this keertana, Tyagaraja prays to Sree Ganapathi, describing his appearance and praising his actions.

P Sree gaNa patini sEvimparArE Srita mAnavulArA || Oh! devotees, you come to serve Sree Ganapathi.
AP vAgAdhipa supoojala jE koni
bAgA naTimpu chunu veDalina ||
Worshipped by Bramha and other Gods, Ganapathi started dancing in joy.
C panasa nArikELAdi jambu phalamula nAraginchi
ghana tarambuganu mahi pai padamulu
ghallu ghallu mananinchi
anayamu hari charaNa yugamulanu
hrudayAmbujamuna nunchi
vinayamu nanu tyAgarAja vinutuDu
vividha gatula dhittallangu mani veDalina ||
Having eaten jackfruit, coconut, berries, etc., he set his feet on this earth with the sound of tinkling anklets.
However his mind is at the feet of Sri Hari.
He who danced to the perfect beat is adored humbly by Tyagaraja.

sogasugA mrudanga - Sree ranjani - roopakam

In this kruti Tyagaraja tells us that only such singers who sing with raga, bhava and tala are ideal. He says that only such singers are fortunate.

P sogasugA mrudanga tAlamu jata goorchi ninu jokka chEyu dheeruDevvadO || Who is that great person that can sing your praise beautifully to the perfect beat of mridangam.
AP nigama SirOrdhamu galgina nija vAkkulatO swara SuddhamutO || Who can sing with the essence of scriptures, truthful words and pure swaras (notes)?
C yati viSrama sadbhaktiki virati drAkshArasa nava rasa
yuta kriti chE bhaji yinchE
yukti tyAgarAjuni taramA ||
Oh Rama ! Is the great skill of singing a kruti with rhyme, pause, real devotion and nine rasas as sweet as grape juice possible for Tyagaraja?

Sree raghu kula mandu - hamsadhwani - Adi

In this kruti, Tyagaraja praises Rama for fulfilling the desires of rishis who lived in hermitages and admired him as care taker of his devotees.

P Sree raghu kula mandu buTTi, seeta nu
chEkonina rAmachandra ||
Rama Chandra was born in the Raghu Kula dynasty.
He got married to Seeta.
AP ArAmamandu munula kOrika leedEra sEya poonu konna rAma || He fulfilled the desire of sages who lived in hermitages.
C vara ratna peeTha mandu majjanamu
puDami surula chEta gaikonna rAma ||
He was coronated on a diamond studded throne by great sages on the earth.
C parama bhaktulanu pAlanamu sEyu
sAkEta vAsa tyAgarAjanuta ||
He took care of his devotees.
He lived in Saketa and he is worshipped by Tyagaraja.

Sobhillu - jaganmOhini - roopakam

In this kruti, Tyagaraja spiritualizes the seven notes of music as gods. Further, he says that they evolved from the Vedas. He also says that the saptaswaras should be worshipped. (i.e nadopasana)

P Sobhillu saptAswara sunDarula bhajimpavE manasA || Saptaswaras flourish in Gods, Oh my heart pray them.
AP nAbhi hrut kanTha rasana nAsAdulayandu || Saptaswaras emanate from the navel, the heart, the throat and the tongue.
C dhara ruksAmAdula lO vara gAyatri hrudayamuna
surabhoosura mAnasamuna Subha tyAgarAjAdulalO ||
Saptaswaras evolved from Rigveda and other Vedas. They are in Gayathri mantra.
They are in the hearts of Gods and learned men as well as in Tyagaraja and other singers.

sAmaja vara - hindOLam - Adi

In this song, Tyagaraja describes the gait and beauty of Rama that enchanted even sages. He says that Rama illuminates the Saptaswaras born from the Vedas.

P sAmaja vara gamanA sAdhuhrut sAra sAbja pAla kAlAteeta vikhyAta || Your walk is dignified like the walk of an elephant.
You are like the sun to the lotus like hearts of ascetics.
You are beyond time, you are famous.
AP sAma nigama ja sudhAmaya gAna vichakshaNa
guna Seela dayALa vAla mAm pAlaya ||
You are the scholar of the nectar of music
You are virtuous and merciful, protect us.
C vEda SirO mAtruja sapta swara
nAdAchala deepa swee kruta
yAdava kula muraLi vAdana vi
nOda mOhana kara tyAgarAja vandaneeya ||
You illuminate the divine nadam of Saptaswaras which are born of the Vedas.
You chose to live amidst the cowherd community.
You enchanted the world by playing flute. Tyagaraja bows to you.

sandhEhamu - rAma priya - Adi

In this kruti Tyagaraja wants to know from Rama whether worshiping Rama's feet is better than worshiping his padukas worshipped by Bharata.

P sandEhamunu deerpa vayya sAkEta nilaya rAmayya|| Clear my lurking doubt, O Rama that lives in Saketa (Ayodhya).
AP nandArchita pada yugamulu mElO
nAgarika magu pada yugamulu mElO ||
Are Rama's feet that sage Nanda worshiped better? or
Are Rama's padukas that Bharata worshiped better?
C vara mounu lella charaNammulanu
smari yimpa needu pada mosangenE
bharatArchana chE pAdukalu
dhara ninnosange tyAgarAja bhAgyamA ||
The sages are blessed with salvation for keeping your holy feet in their minds always.
Bharata ruled the kingdom by worshiping your padukas placed on your throne.
You are the wealth of Tyagaraja.

seetA kalyANa - SankarAbharaNamu - khanDa chApu

In this song Tyagaraja describes the grand celebration of the wedding of Sita and Rama and eulogises Rama's capabilities and qualities in warfare and also about his compassionate nature.

P seetA kalyANa vaibhOgamE || What a grand celebration of the wedding of Sita and Rama.
C1 pavanajA stuti pAtra pAvana charitra
ravi sOma vara nEtra ramaNeeya gAtra
Anjaneya the son of Vayu the wind god chants their praise. Rama is the embodiment of piety. The sun and the moon are like his eyes.He has the most attractive body.
C2 bhakta jana paripAla, bharita Sara jAla
bhukti mukti da leela bhoo dEva pAla ||
He protects all his devotees and can bear the onslaught of arrows from his opponents.. He bestows us sustenance and also salvation. The whole world is his 'leela' (sport).
C3 pAmarA sura bheema pari poorNa kAma
SyAma jaga dabhi rAma sAkEta dhAma ||
He is terror to the wicked demons.
He is above desires.He has the complexion of dark clouds.
He is the universal favorite that lives in saketa (Ayodhya).
C4 sarva lOkAdhAra samaraika veera
garva mAnasa doora kanakAga dheera ||
He is the prop for all lokas and is so valiant that none can defeat him.
He is always at a distance to the arrogant people.
He is capable of facing enemies like the Meru mountain.
C5 nigamAgama vihAra nirupama Sareera
nagadharAgha vidAra nata lOkAdhAra ||
He flourishes in the essence of the scriptures.
His body is unique.He is the main prop of his devotees.
C6 para mESa nuta geeta bhava jaladhi pOta
taraNi kula sanjAta tyAgaraja nuta ||
Siva sings his praise.
He enables us cross the ocean of worldly problems.
He is the jewel of the solar dynasty.
He is worshipped by Tyagaraja.

SambhO mahAdEva - pantu varALi - roopakam

In this kruti Tyagaraja worships Siva known as Sundaresa. and his consort Meenakshi.He describes Siva's appearance and his compassionate nature.

P SambhO mahAdEva Sankara girijA ramaNa || Oh Sambho,Oh Mahadeva,Oh Sankara,Oh Girijaramana!
AP SambhO mahAdEva SaraNAgata jana rakshaka
ambOruha lOchana padAmbuja bhaktim dEhi||
Oh Sambho Mahadeva you are the protector of those who surrender to you. Your eyes resemble a lotus.Please bestow the quality of devotion to your lotus feet.
C parama dayAkara mruga dhara gangA dhara dharaNee
dhara bhooshaNa tyAgarAja vara hrudaya nivESa
sura brinda kireeTa maNi vara neerAjita pada gO
pura vAsa sundarESa gireeSa parAtpara bhava hara ||
You are the embodiment of compassion.
You have crescent moon gracing on your head.
Ganga the river goddess graces on your head.
Serpant Sesha is ornament around your neck.
Tyagaraja is blessed to have you in his heart.
The celestial beings(devatas)bow before you wearing their gem studded crowns.
The light of those shining gems looks like benediction offered to your feet.(harati)
You reside in Gopura (kovuru),Oh Sundaresa,Oh Girisa.
You dispel all our fears.You are transcendental.

sukhi evvarO- kAnaDa - Adi

In this kriti, Tyagaraja says that those who sing the praise of Rama melodiously and those who serve the people of different faiths without any discrimitation are really the happy persons.

P sukhi evvarO rama nAma || Who is that happy person that derives immense happiness in chanting the name of Rama itself ?
AP sukhi evvarO sumukhi yevarO
akhila sAramagu tAraka nAma ||
Who has such a pleasant countenance while expressing that 'Taraka Nama' ( name that bestows salvation ) is the essence of all knowledge?
C satyamu tappaka sakala lOkulaku bhrutyuDai daiva bhEdamu lEka
nitya maina suswara gAnamutO
nirantaramu tyAgarAja nuta nAma ||
One who stands for truth uncompromisingly, one who serves all without any discrimination of their faiths, one who always sings mellifluously, praising the lord (that tyAgarAja workships) is the happy one.

suguNamule - chakravAkam - roopakam

In this kriti tyAgarAja humbly reveals that he always praised the good qualities of Rama and adds that he is not fastidious about rituals and regular study of the scriptures.

P suguNamulE cheppu konTi sundara raghu rAma || I always praised your great virtues, Oh Raghu Rama you are the most handsome.
AP vaga lerunga lEka iTu vattu vanuchu durAsa chE || I am innocent of inscrutable actions and I am devoutly waiting for your grace.
C snAnAdi sukarmambulu dAna dhyAnambu lerunga
Sree nAyaka kshamimchumu Sree tyAga rAja nuta ||
I am not fastidious of going to holy spots for ritual bath and to perform austerities. I am not great in giving charity. I do not religiously study the VedAs and the scriptures.
Oh Lord of Lakshmi pardon me, TyagarAja worships you.

sujana jeevana - khamAs - roopakam

In this kruti Tyagaraja eulogises the great virtues of Rama stating that Rama is life force of the pious people and is born to protect Dharma ( Righteousness) and that his name 'Taraka Rama' is the mantra for emancipation.

P sujana jeevana suguNa bhooshaNa rAma || Oh Rama you are the soul support of all people. Noble virtues are your ornaments.
AP bhujaga bhooshaNArchita budha janAvana
aja vandita srita chandana daSa turanga mA mava ||
You are worshipped by Siva whose Ornament is serpent.
you protect intellectuals.
Brahma bows to you. Your kindness is soothing like sandalwood paste to people who seek your shelter.
O Rama, Garuda bird is your vehicle. Please protect me.
C chAru nEtra Sree kaLa tra Sree ramya gAtra
tAraka nAma sucharitra daSaratha putra
tArakAdi pAvanA dharma pAlaka
tAraya raghu vara nirmala tyAga rAja sannuta ||
Your eyes are beautiful. Lakshmi is your wife. You have a charming body. Your name 'Taraka Rama' emancipates all
Your life story is holy, Oh Son of Dasaratha, your countenance is moon like. You are the protector of Dharma.
Please liberate me from world of bonds.
O Rama the noblest of Raghu Dynasty, You are immaculate. You are workshipped by Tyagaraja.

Sree rAma raghurAma - yadukula kAmbhOji - jampa

In this lilting song Tyagaraja praises all the fortunate people who are blessed with the opportunity of living with Rama, serving Rama and enjoying Rama's grace.

P Sree rAma raghu rAma SrungAra rAma yani
chintincha rAde O manasa ||
Oh my heart, why don't you ponder over the fascinating beauty of Srirama.
C1 taLuku chekkula muddu beTTa kausalya munu
tapa mEmi chEsenO teliya ||
I don't know how fortunate mother Kousalya should have been to kiss the shining cheeks of Sri Rama.
C2 daSarathuDu Sree rAma rArA yani bilva munu
tapa mEmi chEsenO teliya ||
I don't know what penance did Dasaratha perform, to be privileged to call Rama fondly by name.
C3 tami meera paricharya sEya sowmitri munu
tapa mEmi chEsenO teliya ||
I don't know what penance did Lakshmana perform to serve Rama to his heart’s content.
C4 tana venTa chana joochi yupponga kauSikuDu
tapa mEmi chEsenO teliya ||
I don't know what austerities did Viswamitra perform to be blessed with the ecstasy of looking at Rama.
C5 tApam baNagi roopavati yauTa kahalya munu
tapa mEmi chEsenO teliya ||
I don't know what penance did Ahalya perform to be redeemed off the curse by the touch of Rama.
C6 dharmAtmu charaNambu sOka Siva chApambu
tapa mEmi chEsenO teliya ||
I don't know how fortunate is the Siva's bow to be touched by the holy feet of Rama.
C7 tana tanaya nosagi kanulAra gana janakunDu
tapa mEmi chEsenO teliya ||
I don't know how fortunate is Janaka to give his daughter Sita in wed lock to Sri Rama.
C8 daharambu karaga karamunu baTTa jAnaki
tapa mEmi chEsenO teliya ||
I don't know what penance did Janaki perform to win the hand of Sri Rama.
C9 tyAgarAjApta yani pogaDa nArada mauni
tapa mEmi chEsenO teliya ||
I don't know what penance did Sage Narada perform to praise Sri Rama the dear lord of Tyagaraja.