maatha nrusimha – Narasimha Prapatti : Learn Sanskrit – 18

Welcome back to Thedal for learning another sloka in Sanskrit along with its meaning!

Below sloka is known as narasimha prapatti which is sung in praise of Lord Narasimha. This was authored by the 44th peetadhipathi Sri Mukkur Azagiyasingar of Sri Ahobila Mutt.

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Here is the sloka:

maatha nrusimha: pitha nrusimha: bhraatha nrusimha: sakha nrusimha:|
vidya nrusimho dravinam nrusimha: swaami nrusimha: sakalam nrusimha: ||
itho nrusimha: paratho nrusimha: yatho yatho yaami thatho nrusimha:|
nrusimhadevaat paro na kashchit tasmaan nrusimham sharanam prapadye ||

माता नृसिंहः पिता नृसिंहः भ्राता नृसिंहः सखा नृसिंहः ।
विद्या नृसिंहो द्रविणं नृसिंहः स्वामी नृसिंहः सकलं नृसिंहः ॥१॥
इतो नृसिंहः परतो नृसिंहः यतो यतो यामि ततो नृसिंहः ।
नृसिंहदेवात्परो न कश्चित् तस्मान्नृसिंहं शरणं प्रपद्ये ॥२॥

Before going into the details of the sloka, let’s try to understand the word ‘prapatti’. In a broad sense it means devotion or complete surrender to the Lord. When one surrenders to the Lord in totality, he considers himself to be the property of the Lord with not a care in the world. Then, it becomes the responsibility of the Lord to take care of his property, isn’t it?

Our scriptures are replete with devotees who surrendered unconditionally to the Lord – Dhruva, Prahlada, Vibheeshana, all the Azhvars, to name a few. The nrusimha prapatti sloka is one such sloka where the devotee unconditionally accepts the Lord as his everything.

Let us discuss the word-by-word meaning of the above sloka:

maatha nrusimha: pitha nrusimha:

nru‘ in sanskrit means human (‘nara’)and simha is lion. Nrusimha is the Lord who is in Man-Lion form. maatha and pitha indicates mother and father.

bhraatha nrusimha: sakha nrusimha:

bhraatha – brother. Sakha – friend. Thus Lord Nrusimha is the parent and all relatives and friends.

vidya nrusimho dravinam nrusimha: 

Vidhya is education/knowledge. Dravinam is wealth

swaami nrusimha: sakalam nrusimha

Swami is the Lord (swam in sanskrit is ‘property’). The one who owns the property is ‘Swaami’). Sakalam is ‘everything’.

itho nrusimha: paratho nrusimha: 

itha: is ‘here’, meaning ‘in this world’. Paratha: is ‘other worlds’. Thus the Lord is here and everywhere. Recall the words of Prahlada who mentioned this to his father Hiranyakashibu

yatho yatho yaami thatho nrusimha: 

yatha: is wherever. ‘Wherever I go (yaami) there (tatha:) I see Nrusimha everywhere’

nrusimhadevat paro na kashchit

para: – superior (parabrahman – supreme being) na kashchit – nobody (na is negation in sanskrit). ‘There is no one superior to Lord Narasimha’

tasmaat nrusimham sharanam prapadye

tasmaat – therefore, sharanam prapadye – I see refuge in Lord Nrusimha

Here is the total summary of the narasimha prapatti sloka:

Lord Narasimha is my mother and father. He is also my relative and (only) friend. For, he is my complete knowledge and wealth. He is my Lord in this world and in all other worlds. He is omnipresent and omnipotent. I seek refuge in him (Lotus Feet).

You can read the meaning of other slokas here.

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Rangarajan has been blogging for over 12 years now on various topics. With Thedal, he becomes one with the universe and he is hoping that his search will help him discover the eternal truth.  Please join him as he traverses through the universe across temples, philosophies and science!

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