dedicated to Kamakshi. The real name of the poet is not known. Legend has it that
he was born dumb but regained not only his voice by the
grace of Goddess Kamakshi but also became a poet of considerable merit. Mooka
Panchashati consists of five satakams,
each Satakam containing 100 verses. The Satakams are Arya Satakam, Padaravinda Satakam,
Stuti Satakam, Kataksha Satakam and Mandasmita Satakam.
Lord Shiva. Kanchi is the Central
Peetham established by Aadi Shankaracharya who installed and consecrated
the idol of Kamakshi and established the
system of worship there. The other
Peethams are at Badrinath in the North, Dwarka in theWest, Puri in the East and Sringeri (Sringa giri)
in the South.
task and readers may kindly pardon the shortcomings, though every attempt has
been made to make the translation as close as possible to the intended or
in sporting in Kanchi! who can measure
the magnitude of your greatness even after straining himself to the limit of
his abilities? In spite of it, a quirk
of my mind has engaged me in singing your praises though it is only the prattle
of a fool like me.
lotus feet of Kamakshi and spreading in all directions excels the red colour of
the tender leaves in Nandanavana, in the city of Indra. It is the ancient of teacher of all important
entities with effulgence of bright red colour and it fights the redness of the
blossom of the hibiscus flowers.
taught the female swans their beautiful gait,
which are like the wish-yielding tree of heaven for the poor and which are
skilled in dispelling the densest of darkness.
feet which spreads the red colour,
bright as the rays of the rising sun,
in the seemanta (the line which is formed on the head by parting
the hair at the centre) of celestial
women who bow down at the feet and which shines as the red cloth covering
the breasts of the three Vedas ( which
have assumed a feminine form)
which is carried by the evening moon which is lodged in the head-sky of the Enemy
of Kama (Shiva) who bows down at Kamakshi’s feet fearing her displeasure
because of love-quarrel.
of Kamakshi which has the rows of crowns of celestials (who bow down at the
feet) as peetha ( foot-stool on which the feet are paced), the words of praise
which spontaneously arise from their hearts as the palace and Brahma and other
celestials as servants.
feet of Kamakshi which makes the lotus flowers everywhere close, which creates redness combined with the bright
white rays from the nails resembling half moons which cause the heart-lilies of
poets to blossom.
सा विजयते ॥८॥
tell something sweet by the tinkling of the anklets when Lord Shiva, with a
smile on his face, bows down before them and, like a mature friend, loosen the
chances of a love-quarrel arising.
the soft and silky dark hair of celestial damsels which resemble a swarm of
bees. They shine with the red colour of liquid
lac like the red luminosity of the rising sun.
They are full of radiance just like flower-honey dripping lotuses. Thus your lotus feet have taken to the path
of friendship (with the bees, the sun and the lotus)
associated with red(रजस्) they are firmly established only
in the heart of people who do not possess rajoguna (अरजस्) Though they are red (रक्त)
they provide refuge only to those who are unattached (विरक्त). Though they are slow (मन्द)
they are attainable only by the wise (अमन्द). (Because of
these contradictions) O Kamakshi! your lotus feet produce waves of wonderment.
meanings to create virodhaabhasa (seeming contradiction) which is a figure
of speech used by poets for embellishing poetry].
The rays of red colour emitted by the gems in your anklets resemble
matted hair of a tapaswi and the
bright white rays from the toe nails resemble the waters of the Ganga in the
middle of which the feet are seated. Thus my Mother ! your feet are engaged in doing tapas in order to
protect the worlds.
The tinkling of the anklets on the feet seem to speak words which allay fears.
Those lotus feet have radiant crimson brightness, are delicate and dispel the
darkness of my ignorance.
ignorance and delusions which are fortified by my strong attachment to this
samsara. Drops of liquid lac dye on your
feet attach themselves to the matted hair of Shiva (when He bends down at your
feet) and from this the crescent moon, which has made the matted locks of shiva
his home, gets a red mark on his face.
from the sole of your feet, capable of freeing us from sins, purify us. Indra and other celestials compete
among themselves saying ‘I first’, ‘I first’ to get those particles and place
them on their heads.
locks of celestial damsels bowing down at your feet resemble dark clouds and
the radiance from your toe nails resemble a flock of balaka birds (which
drink only the rain water from the clouds before it falls on the earth). The
radiance from your lotus feet which excels the red colour of the hibiscus
in full bloom becomes the streaks of lightning in the clouds.
This also means ‘Your feet have attachment’).
They compete with the lotus daily with their softness, tenderness and
red colour (It also means they hate the
lotus). They naturally attract towards
themselves the heads of the celestials who bow down at your feet. (It also means it attacks the heads of the
celestials). Tell me O Mother! how your
lotus feet can show to the good who bow to you the path to Kaivalya (Mukti,
Liberation)? (since they have such negative qualities such as attachment, hate etc. which are inconsistent
lotus feet which is of the beautiful red colour of japa flowers, which wants the lotus of Ultimate
Knowledge to bloom, which destroys the dumbness of the world and which is enemy
of the dense darkness of ignorance,
light up the East-mountain of my mind.
anklets of Kamkshi create the impression of the dark blue sea. The red colour
of Kamakshi’s feet appear to be the conflagration
of deluge (badavagni) on the surface of this sea. The radiance from the
nails create the impression of foam causing whiteness of the sea. May our
salutations be always to that redness of Kamakshi’s feet.
their radiance all around be the rope in the deep well of darkness (ignorance),
the sun in the lotus forest of my heart and the rainy season in the river of
नौमि चरणम् ॥२०॥
grant refuge to those who prostrate before it.
Just as the eyes meet the end of the ears (श्रुत्यन्ते)
with good news your lotus feet are placed in the end of the Vedas (श्रुत्यन्ते)
or Upanishads. Just as the lips are
served by a pretty row of white teeth (रम्यैर्द्विजगणैः)
your feet are served by noble brahmins(रम्यैर्द्विजगणैः). Just as your breasts accommodate pearls (मुक्ताश्रितं) your lotus
feet accommodates realised souls ((मुक्ताश्रितं)
have two meanings each to draw a smilirity of the lotus feet of Kamakshi with
her eyes, lips and breasts]
at your feet, the naturally oscillating ear-globes of red coral worn by her
produce a reflection in the toe nails,
the whiteness of which resembles the waters of the milky ocean, and enhances the beauty of your lotus feet.
taste of the nectar of serving at your lotus feet, which is very efficient in
destroying the sufferings of all the
three worlds, so that I can be freed from the sorrow born out of the strong poison
of my sufferings.
दृष्ट्वा नखरुचिम् ।
चरणौ तौ तनुमहे ॥२३॥
Kamakshi’s feet. The brightness of the
moon burns with jealousy seeing the radiance of the toe nails of Kamakshi. The
tender leaves of trees want to emulate the bloom of Kamakshi’s feet. We meditate
in our mind on the softness of Kamakshi’s lotus feet.
on a quest to find the ultimate Truth walking the path of scriptures and
discard every thing of this world saying ‘ this is not the ultimate Truth’ and
still continue their search. The meaning of their words points to the weight of the greatness of your
scriptures. It is pure and enriched with the nectar of bliss. It is the adornment of the Earth and it
abides in the heart of the great ocean of consciousness. Those lotus feet of
yours are sought after by the minds of the sages as a priceless gem.