|Though the boys were afraid of
the animal, to Panini it was a harmless delightful word. Seeing the tiger, he
began to explain the etymology of the world. The tiger ate Panini up.
But what if it did? The tiger liked the sweet smell of his body, and so
tore it and ate it up. But Panini did not run away because he was a worshipper of shabda-brahman
(God as the Word). For him all things had become one. In the tiger too he recognized God as the
Because of this greatness, he is reverently called "Bhagavan
Panini," in the commentaries where his name occurs. They express their deep gratitude to him for
opening with the instrument of knowledge the eyes of the blind world -
"ajnaanaandhasya lokasya jnaanaanjana shalaakayaa
ckakshurunmiililam yena tasmat paaninaye namah."
Thus Bhagavan Panini sees in the tiger the vision of the Lord. Jnanadev says -
"Though to our home comes heaven, or upon us springs the tiger,
Never let there be a break in the consciousness of Self."
Such was the state of Maharshi Panini. He had realized that the tiger
was a divine manifestation.