Saranam Vili Mantras: A Guide to the Sacred Chants of Lord Ayyappa
Saranam Vili Mantras are a set of 108 names of Lord Ayyappa, the Hindu deity of love, compassion and dharma. These mantras are chanted by devotees as a way of seeking refuge and protection in the Lord, especially during the pilgrimage to Sabarimala, his holy abode in Kerala. Saranam Vili Mantras are also known as Ayyappa Saranam Vilikal or Ayyappa Saranam Mantras in Malayalam.
The word Saranam means surrender or refuge, and Vili means call or invocation. The mantras are composed of two parts: the name of the Lord followed by the phrase Saranam Ayyappa, meaning "I surrender to Ayyappa". For example, the first mantra is Swamiye Saranam Ayyappa, meaning "O Lord, I surrender to you". The mantras are recited in a melodious tune that creates a devotional atmosphere and invokes the grace of the Lord.
The origin of Saranam Vili Mantras is not clear, but they are believed to be based on the ancient Tamil hymns called Tiruppugazh, composed by Saint Arunagirinathar in praise of Lord Muruga, the brother of Lord Ayyappa. Some of the names of Lord Ayyappa in the mantras are derived from his association with Lord Muruga, such as Shakti Vadivelan Sodarane (the brother of Shakti Vadivelan), Karuppanna Swamiye (the dark-skinned lord), and Periya Kadutta Swamiye (the lord who pierced the hill).
The Saranam Vili Mantras are not only a form of worship, but also a way of expressing gratitude, love and devotion to Lord Ayyappa. They also reflect the various aspects and attributes of the Lord, such as his compassion (Abhaya Dayakane), his generosity (Annadhaana Prabhuve), his wisdom (AshtaSiddhi Dayagane), his power (Ahandai Azhippavane), his beauty (Enillaa Roopane), and his universality (Engum Nirainda Naada Brahmame).
The Saranam Vili Mantras are available in various formats, such as audio, video, text and pdf. One such pdf file is Saranam Vili Mantras Malayalam Pdf 57, which contains the 108 names of Lord Ayyappa in Malayalam script along with their meanings in English. This pdf file can be downloaded from this link. The pdf file also contains some additional information about Lord Ayyappa and his worship.
Saranam Vili Mantras are a powerful and simple way of connecting with Lord Ayyappa and experiencing his blessings. By chanting these mantras with faith and devotion, one can attain peace, happiness and salvation.
Lord Ayyappa is believed to have a unique and mysterious birth story. According to the Puranic and oral traditions, he was born out of the union of Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu, when the latter was in Mohini form. Lord Vishnu took the form of Mohini to destroy a deadly demon Bhasmasura and acquire the elixir (amrut) for the gods during the great churning of oceans. Lord Shiva was enchanted by the beauty of Mohini and expressed his desire to unite with her. Mohini agreed and gave birth to a divine child, who was named Ayyappan by Shiva. [^1^] [^3^]
Another version of the story says that Ayyappan was born from the union of Shiva and Vishnu as Hariharaputra, meaning "the son of Hari (Vishnu) and Hara (Shiva)". This version emphasizes the harmony and unity of the two major sects of Hinduism, Vaishnavism and Shaivism. Ayyappan is thus seen as a symbol of inter-religious harmony and tolerance. [^2^] [^4^]
Ayyappan was abandoned by his parents with a bell around his neck, which gave him the name Manikandan, meaning "the one with a bell". He was found by a childless king Rajashekara Pandiyan of Pandalam, who adopted him as his son. Ayyappan grew up as a brave and intelligent prince, who excelled in martial arts and Vedas. He also befriended a Muslim warrior named Vavar, who became his loyal devotee. [^1^] [^2^]
When Ayyappan was twelve years old, he faced a great challenge from a buffalo-headed demoness named Mahishi, who had obtained a boon from Lord Brahma that she could only be killed by a child born from the union of Shiva and Vishnu. Mahishi had been wreaking havoc in the three worlds and had challenged the gods to fight her. Ayyappan accepted the challenge and fought with Mahishi for many days. He finally defeated her by throwing her into the air and piercing her heart with his arrow. As she was dying, she revealed that she was actually a celestial maiden named Leela, who had been cursed by a sage to become a demoness. She also expressed her love for Ayyappan and asked him to marry her. Ayyappan agreed to fulfill her wish after he completed his mission on earth. [^1^] [^2^]
Ayyappan's mission on earth was to destroy the evil Kali Yuga and establish Dharma Yuga. He also had to fulfill his promise to his foster father Rajashekara Pandiyan, who wanted him to become the king of Pandalam. However, Ayyappan had no desire for worldly pleasures and decided to renounce everything and become a celibate ascetic. He told his father that he would go to Sabarimala, a forested hill in Kerala, and meditate there for eternity. He also asked his father to build a temple for him at Sabarimala and install his idol there. He also instructed his devotees to follow certain rules and rituals before visiting his shrine, such as observing 41 days of austerity, wearing black clothes, carrying an irumudi (a cloth bundle containing offerings) on their head, climbing 18 sacred steps, and chanting "Swamiye Saranam Ayyappa". He also said that he would bless all those who came to see him with faith and devotion. [^1^] [^2^] 061ffe29dd