Old Tamil Poetry

Translations of Tamil Poetic works that span 2000 years

Thirumandhiram – 1.11.1

Shallow men say Love and God differ,
none realizes that Love is God;
once they realize Love is God,
they’re at peace with Love as God.

அன்பும் சிவமும் இரண்டென்பர் அறிவிலார்
அன்பே சிவமாவ தாரும் அறிகிலார்
அன்பே சிவமாவ தாரும் அறிந்தபின்
அன்பே சிவமாய் அமர்ந்திருந் தாரே.

This is one of the famous poems of Saivite saint Thirumoolar (5th Century), also considered to be one of the earliest Siddhars (rebel ascetics of Tamil society). It is a straight forward poem, the repetition of words அன்பு & சிவம் (love & God) gives it a cadence in Tamil. I have tried to replicate that in English.

Simpletons say that Love and God are two different entities. They don’t realize that Love itself is God. Once they realize Love is God, they’re at peace with Love as God itself. Love your fellow beings. That is the way to attain oneness with God and be blissful. This is my interpretation based on commentaries I read. There might be nuances I missed too.

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