Vemana Padyalu Small Poems for Children (Neethi Padyalu)

Vemana Telugu Neethi Padyalu
All About Vemana)
Telugu Neethi Sooktulu
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Vemana History

Kumaragiri Vemareddy popularly known as Vemana was a 14th century Telugu poet. His poems were written in the popular vernacular of Telugu, and are known for their use of simple language and native idioms. His poems discuss the subjects of Yoga, wisdom and morality. He is popularly called Yogi Vemana, in recognition of his success in the path of Yoga.

Early life and background

There is no consensus among scholars about the period in which Vemana lived. C.P. Brown, known for his research on Vemana, estimates the year of birth to be the year 1352 based on some of his verses. Vemana was the third and youngest son of Kumaragiri Vemareddy, the then king of Kondaveedu in present-day Andhra Pradesh. He was named Vemareddy after his father. While his name suggests he belonged to the Reddy caste, some academics believe he was a Kapu who was born in the village of Mugachintapalli.


Vemana came into contact with Lambika siva yogi in Kondaveedu, who initiated him into the path of Yoga. After this, Vemana travelled across the state, composing poetry and attaining success in yoga.

Poetry and Fame

Vemana composed numerous poems in the vernacular of telugu. His poems are four lines in length. The fourth line is, in majority of the cases, the chorus Viswadabhirama Vinura Vema - he thus conveyed his message with three small lines written in a simple vernacular. He traveled widely across south India, acquiring popularity as a poet and Yogi. People really took to Vemana's poems owing to their simple language and sweet message. So high was the regard for Vemana that a popular telugu saying goes 'Vemana's word is the word of the Vedas'. He is celebrated for his style of Chaatu padyam, a poem with a hidden meaning. C.P. Brown translated most of Vemana's poems into English, during the British occupation of India. A large selection of his poems are a part of the present High School curriculum of Telugu in Andhra Pradesh. In his honor, The Andhra Pradesh government named a University in Kadapa the Yogi Vemana University in 2006. Vemana was believed to have lived for some time in the Gandikota area of Kadapa.


There is a headstone marking the grave of Vemana in kataru palli, a village in Anantapur. It is believed widely that Vemana died in this village. Being a Yogi, he was buried and not cremated.
Poetic Style

Many lines of Vemana's poems are now colloquial phrases of the Telugu language. They end with the signature line Viswadhaabhi Raama, Vinura Vema, literally Beloved of Vishwadha, listen Vema. There are many interpretations of what the last line signifies. Vemana's poems were collected and published by C.P.Brown in the 19th century.His poems are of many kinds, social, moral, satirical and mystic nature. Most of them are in Ataveladi (dancing lady) meter.
Sample poetry

Uppu Kappurambu nokka polika nundu
Chooda chooda ruchulu jaada veru
Purushulandu Punya purushulu veraya
Viswadhaabhiraama, Vinura Vema

Salt and camphor look similar,
but closer observation shows their taste is different Among men, virtuous people stand apart Beloved of the Bounteous, Vema, listen!

Gangi govu paalu garitadainanu chaalu

Kadivedainanemi kharamu paalu
Bhakti kalugu koodu pattedainanu chaalu
Viswadhaabhiraama, Vinura Vema

A ladleful of a Sacred cow's milk is enough Of what worth is even a potful of donkey's milk Even a little food given with respect is sumptuous Beloved of the Bounteous, Vema, listen!

Atmasuddhi leni acharamadi ela
Bhandasuddhi leni pakamadi ela
Chittasuddi leni sivpujalelara
Viswadhaabhiraama, Vinura Vema

What is the purpose of custom sans inner purity? What is the purpose of cooking sans cleanliness of vessels? What is the purpose of worship of Shiva sans purity of mind? Beloved of the Bounteous, Vema, listen!

Alpudeppudu palku adamburamu ganu

Sajjanundu palku challaganu
Kanchu moginatlu kanakammu mroguna

Viswadhaabhiraama, Vinura Vema

A mean(low) person always speaks pompously A good person speaks softly Does gold reverberate the way brass does? Beloved of the Bounteous, Vema, listen!

Anagananaga raga matisayilluchunundu

thinaga thinaga vemu tiyyanundu
sadhanamuna panulu samakuru dharalona
Viswadhaabhiraama, Vinura Vema

As you sing (again and again), the melody (raga) excels As you eat Neem (again and again) , it becomes sweeter With practice, things become perfect Beloved of the Bounteous, Vema, listen!

Anuvu gani chota Nadhikulamanaradu
Kochmayina nadiyu kodava gadu

konda addamandu knochami undada

Viswadhaabhiraama, Vinura Vema

When it is not our place or time, we cannot win You have not become small because of this Don't you know the hill looks small in a mirror Beloved of the Bounteous, Vema, listen!

Apadiana velanarasi bandhula judu
bhayamuvela judu bantu tanamu
Pedavela judu pendlamu gunamu

Viswadhaabhuraama, Vinura Vema

In times of distress, observe the attitude of relatives In times of fear, observe the behaviour of the army In times of poverty, observe the nature of the wife Beloved of the Bounteous, Vema, listen!

Chippalonabadda chinuku mutyambayye
nitabadda chinuku nita galise
Brapti galugu chota phalamela tappura
Viswadhaabhiraama, Vinura Vema

The rain drop that fell in the shell became a pearl
The one that fell in water merged with water If something is yours, you are sure to get it. Beloved of the Bounteous, Vema, listen!

Veshabhashalerigi Kashayavastramul
gattagane mukti galugabodhu
talalu bodulina talapulu bodula

Viswadhaabhiraama, Vinrua Vema

Knowing external behaviour and language, wearing saffron (renunciate) clothes That does not lead to mukti (liberation) Shaving of head (of a renunciate, widow etc) does not shave (unwanted) thoughts Beloved of the Bounteous, Vema, listen!

Cheppulona rayi chevilona joriga

kantilona nalusu kali mullu
intilona poru intinta gadaya
Viswadhaabhiraama, Vinura Vema

A stone in shoe, a fly near ear
Pollen in eye, a thorn in foot A quarrel in the house, are unbearable(painful) Beloved of the Bounteous, Vema, listen!

Tappulennuvaru Tandopatandambu
Lurvi janulakella nundu tappu

Tappu lennuvaru tamatappu lerugaru

Viswadhaabhiraama, Vinura Vema

There are many that find faults (with others) Every one in the world has faults The people who count faults do not know their own faults Beloved of the Bounteous, Vema, listen!

Inumu virigeneni irumaaru mummaaru
kaachi yatakavachu kramamu gaanu
manasu virigeneni mari chercharaadaya
Viswadaabhiraama, Vinura Vema

Iron, if broken, can be joined together, twice or thrice but heart once broken can never be put together again

Medi pandu chooda melimaiyundu
Potta vippi chooda purugulundu

Pirikivani madibinkamilagura

Viswadhaabhirama vinura Vema

Medi, a fruit, looks gorgeous externally,
But when we rip it, we find worms within. In a similar manner, a coward appears brave outside, but in reality he is not. Beloved of the Bounteous, Vema, listen!

Elugu tholua thechi
Edathi uthikina
Nalupu Nalupey gani thelupu kadhu
Koyyabomma Tecchi Kottina Balukuna
Viswadhaabhirama vinura Vema

Even if you take a bear's skin and wash it in water for a year The black rat will remain a black rat and not become white Similarly, you cannot change the color (character) of men who are dyed in the wool Beloved of the Bounteous, Vema, listen!


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