Kandar Alangaram


Arunagirinathar has weaved a beautiful garland to adore Lord Muruga. He weaved not a garland of flowers (Poomalai), but a garland of songs (Paamalai) by way of Kandar Alangaram. Each word appeared like a selectively chosen flower to adore God. Kandar Alangaram, consisting of 102 verses, is a marvelous creation of poetry that portrays the magnificence of Muruga and presents Him in all His splendor and glory before us.  Apart from being an ornament that adds to the beauty of Muruga, Kandar Alangaram describes the various qualities of Muruga, His benevolence, His knowledge, His valour, the power of His Vel, the exquisitely beautiful peacock and the ensign of the rooster. It describes how Muruga comes into our lives in various roles.

In the beginning, the poet expresses his happiness that Muruga, son of Lord Siva, the embodiment of compassion, has helped him to come out of his  worldly bondage and showed him the correct way to salvation. He says: “Oh Muruga, the guide, you have helped even me, who has not done any effort in attaining spiritual perfection, in sailing through the turbulent ocean of life and reaching the shore of His Lotus Feet (Petrai Thavam). In the verse No. 8, Muruga is depicted as a Guru. The poet says that as a result of the valuable advice (Upadesa) given by the Lord, he was liberated from the world of ignorance and elevated to a high state of Jnana (knowledge). One can find frequent reference to the saintly advice received from Lord Muruga. (Oliyil Vilaintha). In the verse No. 13, Muruga is described as the embodiment of beauty, looking majestic with His various ornaments (Oruvarai). The verse No. 16 says that this body, made of flesh, bones and skins, would perish one day and one free himself from the influence of body, mind and senses to be able to realise the inherent divinity within.  (“Tholal Suvar Vaithu”),  There are verses which highlight the futility of accumulating wealth, (20 Kozhi), which seeks strength to conquer the fear of death and help us to reach the shores of Muruga’s Lotus Feet.  Every verse of Kandar Alangaram speaks volume about various infinite qualities of Muruga.  By reciting Kandar Alangaram one forgets the worldly worries and experiences the sense of unity with Muruga.

Velavan, who has chosen His abode at Thiruchengodu, holds special fascination for the saint Arunagirinathar. This is overwhelmingly evident in Kandar Alangaram. According to the poet, even if one is destined to suffer due to his past Karmas, he will be able to redeem himself by worshiping the Thiruchengodu Velavan. In the hymn starting “Deiva Thirumalai” (23) he prays: “Oh Lord, come and liberate my soul before this house of body crumbles down.” In another hymn starting “Senthanai (72) he says that there will be no downfall for those who worship Thiruchengodu Velavan and the Lord would bestow them a life of happiness and prosperity. In another song (Malon Maruganai 90), Arunagirinathar says: “Oh Lord Muruga, the son-in-law of Lord Vishnu, son of Lord Siva, the connoisseur of the divine art of dance at the Court of Devas, the Lord most adored and worshiped by the Devas, the epitome of knowledge, who resides at Thiruchengodu, the abode surrounded by lush green paddy fields and lakes, how fabulous and magnificent You look!. Even if Lord of Creation, Brahma, has endowed me with four thousand eyes, it would not be sufficient enough for me to see and admire Your majesty and splendor to my heart’s content. The saint-poet mentions about the divine qualities of Thiruchengodu Velavan in the hymn No. 23 and then continues portraying His various divine qualities in hymns No. 36, 70, 72, 90, 91 and 97. May the grace of Thiruchengodu Velavan be showered on all devotees.