The 7th Naamam of SrI VenkatEsA AshtOttharam:
SRI GOVINDHAAYA NAMAHA: = SALUTATIONS TO THE REVERED LORD KNOWN BY THE NAME OF GOVINDHAN!
The Naamam "Govindhan" is made up of two sabdhams: "gO" and the dhAthu,"Viddh".
The "gO" sabdham has been given ten meanings by scholars (SummA Patti SrI KrishNa Iyengar).
The DhAthu "Viddh" has been given four meanings.The combination of "gO' and "Viddh" reveals that the Lord Is the One who grants Moksham(Mokshapradhan),the One who is understood through VedAs and saluted by the VedAs (Veda-vEdhyan),One who gifted VajrAyudham to Indhran and the One who took on the ten avathArams (DasAvathAran).
This sacred name of the Lord is more powerful than the Lord Himself (Vaachaka prabhAvam is greater than Vaachya PrabhAvam) according to SrI PiLlailOkAchaar:
"Droupathikku aapatthil pudavai surandhadu ThirunAmam irE"
(In the time of utter distress,this sacred name blessed Dhroupathi with the vasthrams for her Maana samrakshaNam).
More than other sacred names of the Lord,this nAmam places the Lord in our debt forever.
" GovindhEthi yath Aakrandaat KrishNa maam doora Vaasinam
riNam pravriddham iva mE hrudayAth nApasarpati "
IndhrA performs "Govindha PattAbhishEkam" after the episode of the lifting of the Govardhana Giri by the Lord to protect His devotees .
Govindha Naamam is celebrated in the ancient Rig Vedam already:
"chamUshchyEna: sakunO vibhuthvaam
GOVINDUR-DRAPSA aayudhAni Bibrath
apAm Urmim sachamAna: samudhram
thurIyam dhAma nahishO vivakthi"
--Rg Vedam: IX.96.19
The meaning is that one eagle (GarudA)joined the assembly of eternally liberated(nithya sooris)by adorning the weapons of Lord Govindhan.
Those,who are in SamsAra world due to prakruthi sambhandham will reach the Lord's Parama Padham,if they also wore those aayudhams of the Lord and will be venerated by one and all.
This "Govindha "naamam has been pointed out as being unique to our Lord Govindhan,the cowherd of Gokulam thru PaaNini Soothram rules and is recognized as: "gavAdhishu vindhEssamj~nAyAm ".
That is why ANDAL,PeriyAzhwAr and Swamy NammAzhwAr placed special emphasis on the Govindha nAmam(KaNNan).
ANdal saluted Him as "KaNNan yennum Karum Dhaivam".
PriyAzhwAr enjoyed Him as Baala GOpAlan and Swamy NammAzhwAr instructed us to perform SaraNAgathi at the sacred feet of KaNNan(Govindhan).
Govindha Naama sankIrthanam is very special to Thiruppathi Venkatesan.PerumAL's name is Venkata KrishNan as at ThiruvallikkENi.
On PurattAsi Saturdays,the sweet sound of Govindha naama sankeerthanam(GovindhA!GovindhA!) echos from the sacred hills of Thirumalai.
On His "Birthday" of PurattAsi SravaNam,the sanctifying Govindha naama gOsham reaches a crescendo from dawn to dusk in the inner chambers of the Lord's sannidhi and all around.
Lord VenkatEsan is"the KuRai onRum illa Govindhan"(Blemishless Lord: Sakala KalyANa GuNa SampoorNan) adored by His divine consort ANDAL in Her sacred ThiruppAvai.
She declared the inalienable relationship between us ,the jeevans with Her Lord and showed us the way to perform kaimkaryam to Him.
Vaikunta Vaasi U.Ve . MukkUr Lakshmi NarasimhAcchAr Swamy has celebrated the doctrines behind the blemishless Tattvams behind the name,"KuRai OnRum illA Govindhan" in his multi-tomed,brilliant monographs.
ANDAL declares that She will wait for His grace as long as it takes,through the singing of the nAmam of Govindhan and keep Her life in tact: "Govindhan guNam paadi Aavi kAtthiruppEn"
In the 28th ThiruppAvai, She salutes "KuRai onRum ilaa Govindhan",Her dear Lord.
She performs MangaLAsAsanam for "Govindhan " and identifies Him Specifically as VenkatAchalapathi in Her NaacchiyAr Thirmozhi Paasurams (NTM 1.3, 10.7 and 12.4).
Her dear father,SrI VishNu chitthar is lost in the bliss of listening to the divine flute playing of Govindhan(Periya Thirumozhi : 3.6.2,3.6.3,3.6.8 and 3.6.11).
AzhwAr invites the Young Moon to come near Her (YasOdhai's) son,Govindhan.AzhwAr as YasOdhai invites Her son by the name of Govindhan to have His ears pierced.
PeriyAzhwAr does Govinda Naama sankIrthanam in His PeriyAzhwAr Thirumozhi TWELVE times.This essay will get longer if we describe these exquisite anubhavams of the AzhwAr's PiLLai Tamizh (PeriyAzhwAr Thirumozhi: 4.3.4,4.4.9,4.5.8,4.6.4,2.3.4,2.5.6,2.9.11 and 3.4.1).
As indicated earlier,Govindhan is SaraNAgatha rakshakan and responded immediately to the desparate appeals of Droupathi,when she was being humiliated at the court of KauravAs.She did not call Krishna by the names of Achyuthan,Maadhavan or VaasudEvan,but she called him in great pain with the name of Govindhan,He responded immediately.
Govindhan is the name of KrishNa-VaasudEvan and as such is recognized by Upanishads and GopAla Sahasra Naamams :
1."BrahmaNyO DevakI Puthraaya:" (NaarAyaNOPanishad)
2."KrishNAya DevakI PuthrAya:" (ChAndhOgya Upanishad)
3."Tadhasmyaham VaasudEva:" (Brahma Bindhu Upanishd)
4.GopAla TaapanIyOpanishad passages.
This is the same "Govindha" nAmam that is being celebrated by Upanishads and Vedam.
Thiruppathi GOvindhan is thus the Veda Moorthy,who is celebrated by the Seventh Naamam of SrI VenkatEsa AshtOtthara satha Naamam.
The Ten Meanings of "gO" sabdham (Given by SummApatti Swamy)
Veda prasiddham is the Govindha Naamam: "gObhi: Veda-vaakdhya vEdhyathE ithi Govindha:".
His pious feet are enjoyed as bliss by thevedAs (sarvE VedA yath Padham aamananthi).
Govindan is Sarva sabdha-vaachyan .
"SarvE VedA-yathrai: kam bhavanthi " is another sruthipramANam.
"SollinAl thodarcchi Nee , sollappadum poruLum Nee" is the mangaLAsAsanam of Thirumazhisai AzhwAr,the expert researcher on SrIman NaarAyaNa Para-tatthvam.
He bases his conclusion on the "gO" sabdham of Govindhan , which refers to (1) Veda Vaak(2) Moksham (3) arrow (4) Cow (5) divine speech (6) VajrA weapon (7) Divine sight (8) Jwaalai or Param JyOthi. (9) BhUmi and (10) Jayam or Victory.
The many derivative meanings of the ten intrepretaions are limitless . adiyEn will conclude this salutation to Govindha Naamam with the adaptation of an ancient eulogy :
"MaathA PithA BhrAthA nivAsa: SaraNam suhruth gathi Govindha:"
That NivAsan is SrInivAsan of Thirumalai.