Dasakam - 32 - Matsya Avatharam
Sathya yuga was about to end and Pralaya was to take place at the end of the sixth Manvantara. Brahma went to sleep, asura Hayagriva emerged from his face, stole the Vedas and hid himself deep in the ocean. The power for creation for Brahma came from these vedas, so Lord decided to incarnate as Matsya (fish) and save the world before the Pralaya.
The king of Pandya Kingdom called Satyavrata, later known as Manu, was an ardent devotee of Lord Vishnu. One day when he was doing Deva, Rishi tarpanam in waters of Kritamalaa river, the one which runs to the south of present vaigai river in Madurai. Lord entered in to his hands as tiny fish.
When Satyavrata was about to leave the fish in to water, the fish requested it to be protected. Satyavrata then left the fish in his kamandala of water, and took it to his ashram. Next day, it grew big in size and as the fish kept on growing bigger, it was moved to well, then to a pond, then to a river and finally to ocean.
Sathyavratha took the fish to the ocean by sensing the uniqueness of it by his yogic powers. He saw the fish grow bigger in ocean too and questioned it as to who it really was. As the chance of fish growing up so fast and big is not possible, he decided that it should be Lord himself in fish form.
Lord appeared before satyavratha and told him the reason for his incarnation. Lord asked him to wait for pralaya which would come in seven days. On the seventh day, rains came, water submerged the entire earth. Sathyavratha and divine saptarishis took refuge in Lord, when earth in the form of boat approached them and carried them. As boat was being tossed in turbulent ocean, Lord appeared in the form of fish with a horn and asked the boat to be tied to its horns by the king of serpents, Vasuki.
As the boat was being pulled and taken around various regions of the universe, King Satyavarata and divine sages sang Lord's glory and pleased with it, Lord imparted the knowledge of aatman. At the end of the deluge, Saptharishis were put back in their places and Sathyavrata was reborn as the Vaivasvatha Manu.
Now Lord went in search of the asura Hayagriva and attacked him with rage. Hayagriva was made powerless and his chest was tore apart by the horns of the fish. Lord recovered the Vedas from Hayagriva and handed over them to Brahmaa to restart the creation.
Bhattathiri praised the Lord who came in form of Fish to restore vedas and advise the knowledge of atman to Sathyavratha and Saptharishis and requested to be protected.
PS: We get to know from Matsya avatharam that Lord only can help us cross the samsara sagaram. To help us cross the samsara sagaram with the blessing of Lord, we need a boat which is "Sathguru". One who listens to this or chants this, will get rid of all sins and get to cross the samsara sagaram easily, will get all their wishes fulfilled. - from the explanatory notes of Sengalipuram Brahmasri Anantharama Dikshithar.
Three "S" we need to remember in life. Samsara, Sathguru, Sathsang - from the Sapthaaham notes of Guru Savithri Mami.
Lyrics of Dasakam 32
पुरा हयग्रीव महासुरेण षष्ठान्तरान्तोद्यद काण्डकल्पे ।
निद्रोन्मुख ब्रह्म मुखात् हृतेषु वेदेषु अधित्स: किल मत्स्यरूपम् ॥१॥
puraa hayagriiva mahaasureNa ShaShThaantaraantOdyada kaaNDakalpe |
nidrOnmukha brahma mukhaat dhR^iteShu vedeShu adhitsa: kila matsyaruupam || 1 ||
सत्यव्रतस्य द्रमिलाधि भर्तु: नदीजले तर्पयतस्तदानीम् ।
कराञ्जलौ सञ्ज्वलिताकृति: त्वम्-अदृश्यथा: कश्चन बालमीन: ॥२॥
satyavratasya dramilaadhi bhartu: nadiijale tarpayatastadaaniim |
karaa~njalau sanjvalitaakR^iti: tvam-adR^ishyathaa: kashchana baalamiina: || 2 ||
क्षिप्तं जले त्वां चकितं विलोक्य निन्येऽम्बु पात्रेण मुनि: स्वगेहम् ।
स्वल्पैरहोभि: कलशीं च कूपं वापीं सरश्चानशिषे विभो त्वम् ॥३॥
kshiptaM jale tvaaM chakitaM vilOkya ninye(a)mbu paatreNa muni; svageham |
svalpairahObhi: kalashiiM cha kuupaM vaapiiM sarashchaanashiShe vibhO tvam || 3 ||
योगप्रभावात् भवदाज्ञयैव नीतस्ततस्त्वं मुनिना पयोधिम् ।
पृष्टोऽमुना कल्प दिदृक्षुमेनं सप्ताहम्-आस्वेति वदन्-अयासी: ॥४॥
yOgaprabhaavaat bhavadaaj~nayaiva niitastatastvaM muninaa payOdhim |
pR^iShTO(a)munaa kalpa didR^ikshumenaM saptaaham-aasveti vadannayaasii: || 4 ||
प्राप्ते त्वदुक्ते हनि वारिधारा-परिप्लुते भूमितले मुनीन्द्र: ।
सप्तर्षिभि: सार्धम्-अपारवारिणि उद्घूर्णमान: शरणं ययौ त्वाम् ॥५॥
praapte tvadukte(a) hani vaaridhaaraa-pariplute bhuumitale muniindra: |
saptarShibhi: saardham-apaaravaariNi udghuurNamaana: sharaNaM yayautvaam || 5 ||
धरां त्वदादेशकरीम्-अवाप्तां नौ-रूपिणीम्-आरुरुहु:-तदा ते
तत्कम्प कम्प्रेषु च तेषु भूय: त्वम्बुधे: आविर्भू:-महीयान् ॥६॥
dharaan tvadaadeshakariim-avaaptaaM nau-ruupiNiim-aaruruhu: tadaa te |
tatkampa kampreShu cha teShu bhuuya: tvamambudhe: aavirabhuu: mahiiyaan || 6 ||
झषाकृतिं योजन लक्षदीर्घां दधानम्-उच्चै:-तर-तेजसम् त्वाम् ।
निरीक्ष्य तुष्टा मुनयस्त्वदुक्त्या त्वत्तुङ्गशृङ्गे तरणिं बबन्धु: ॥७॥
jhaShaakR^itiM yOjana lakshadiirghaaM dadhaanam-uchchai: tara tejasaM tvaam |
niriikshya tuShTaa munayastvaduktyaa tvattungashR^inge taraNiM babandhu: || 7 ||
आकृष्टनौको मुनिमण्डलाय प्रदर्शयन् विश्वजगत्-विभागान् ।
संस्तूयमानो नृवरेण तेन ज्ञानं परं च-उपदिशन्-अचारी: ॥८॥
aakR^iShTa naukO munimaNDalaaya pradarshayan vishvajagad vibhaagaan |
samstuuyamaanO nR^ivareNa tena j~naanaM paraM chOpadishann-achaarii: || 8 ||
कल्पावधौ सप्त मुनीन् पुरोवत् प्रस्थाप्य सत्यव्रत भूमिपं तम् ।
वैवस्वताख्यं मनुमादधान: क्रोधाद् हयग्रीवम् अभिद्रुतोऽभू: ॥९॥
kalpaavadhau saptamuniin purOvat prasthaapya satyavrata bhuumipaM tam |
vaivasvataakhyaM manumaadadhaana: krOdhaadd hayagriivam abhidrutO(a)bhuu: || 9 ||
स्वतुङ्ग शृङ्ग क्षतवक्षसं तं निपात्य दैत्यं निगमान् गृहीत्वा ।
विरिञ्चये प्रीतहृदे ददान: प्रभञ्जनागार पते प्रपाया: ॥१०॥
svatunga shR^inga kshatavakshasaM taM nipaatya daityaM nigamaan gR^ihiitvaa |
viri~nchaye priitahR^ide dadaana: prabha~njanaagaara pate prapaayaa: || 10 ||