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Category Archives: महात्मा

वर्तस्व च सतां क्रमे

न शक्यसे वारयितुं गच्छेदानीं रघूत्तम।
शीघ्रं च विनिवर्तस्व वर्तस्व च सतां क्रमे॥ २-२५-२॥
–श्रीमद्वाल्मीकिरामायणे अयोध्याकाण्डे पञ्चविंशतितमे सर्गे
na śakyase vārayituṁ gacchedānīṁ raghūttama |
śīghraṁ ca vinivartasva vartasva ca satāṁ krame || 2-25-2||
–śrīmadvālmīkirāmāyaṇe ayodhyākāṇḍe pañcaviṁśatitame sarge

It is not possible to restrain your departure [any longer]. Depart now, Oh best amongst the Raghus!
Return soon, and tread in the footsteps of the righteous!”

Amazing! The first advice the great Kausalya gave Her Son, is to tread in the footsteps of the righteous! Surely, Lord Rama didn’t need that advice (of course, it’s for us), but Kausalya just underlines the importance of that. No wonder, this is also one of the most fundamental cornerstones of Sanatana Dharma (and the need for a Guru!). It’s also worth quoting another fantastic conversation in Mahabharata (thanks to the eloquent Vasu Srinivasan):

कः पन्थाः ? asks yakSha. “What is the road?” I would have just asked back “To where?”.

तर्क: अप्रतिष्ट: श्रुतयो विभिन्ना: न एको ऋषि: यस्य मतम् प्रमाणम् ।
धर्मस्य तत्त्वं निहितम् गुहायाम् महाजनो येन गतः स पन्थाः ॥

Yudhishtra’s first utterance is “tarkaH apratiShTaH”. A quote on which vyAkhyAna can be done for hours I guess. “Logic is baseless”. Logic has been the considered the greatest employment of human intellect since Aristotle, Plato down to the European philosophers, who have spent their lifetime only in logic. But Yudhishtra dismisses it curtly – Logic is limited, baseless and cannot be relied upon.

“srutayo vibhinnAH” – vedA-s say different things! “na eko rShiH yasya matam pramANam” – There is not a single rishi whose word is an authority! Its just a poetic way of expressing that vedA-s are interpreted differently and every rishi worth his beard has an opinion. “dharmasya tattvam nihitam guhAyAm”. The truth about dharma is hidden in a deep cave! What the Huh? Where did dharma come from? What does it have to do with logic or vedas or roads? Each rishi is attempting to explain what is “dharma”, but nobody has a single opinion about it and nobody really knows what dharma is. And then he finally ties them all beautifully – “mahAjano yena gataH saH panThaH” – the road travelled by great people is the one to follow (for mokSha)! The great ones have already figured it out, you just follow the road paved by them. yakSha was not even asking about a physical road! That is the fault of translation or misunderstanding of contexts.

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तृष्णां छिन्धि भज क्षमाम्

तृष्णां छिन्धि भज क्षमां जहि मदं पापे रतिं मा कृताः
सत्यं ब्रूह्यनुयाहि साधु पदवीं सेवस्व विद्वज्जनम्‌।
मान्यान्मानय विद्विशोऽप्यनुनय प्रख्यापय प्रश्रयं
कीर्तिं पालय दुःखिते कुरु दयामेतत्सतां चेष्टितम्॥
tṛṣṇāṁ chindhi bhaja kṣamāṁ jahi madaṁ pāpe ratiṁ mā kṛtāḥ
satyaṁ brūhyanuyāhi sādhu padavīṁ sevasva vidvajjanam |
mānyānmānaya vidviśo’pyanunaya prakhyāpaya praśrayaṁ
kīrtiṁ pālaya duḥkhite kuru dayāmetatsatāṁ ceṣṭitam ||
Curbing the desire, practicing patience, giving up pride, not interested in committing a sin,
Speaking the truth, following the footsteps of the good, serving the scholars,
Respecting the honourable, pleasing even enemies, being modest,
Protecting fame and kind towards the distressed. These are the actions of the good.

[Thanks to sanskritdocuments.org]

क्रियासिद्धिः सत्वे भवति महतां नोपकरणे

विजेतव्या लङ्का चरणतरणीया जलनिधिः
विपक्षः पौलस्त्यो रणभुवि सहायाश्च कपयः।
तथाप्येको रामः सकलमवधीद्राक्षसकुमम्
क्रियासिद्धिः सत्वे भवति महतां नोपकरणे॥
vijetavyā laṅkā caraṇataraṇīyā jalanidhiḥ
vipakṣaḥ paulastyo raṇabhuvi sahāyāśca kapayaḥ|
tathāpyeko rāmaḥ sakalamavadhīdrākṣasakumam
kriyāsiddhiḥ satve bhavati mahatāṁ nopakaraṇe||
For defeating Lanka [for Lord Rama], the sea had to be crossed by foot. The opponent was (powerful) RavaNa, and (but) his assistants (army) on the battlefield were monkeys (All odds were against Lord Rama).
Despite all this, one Lord Rama killed all the demons. Success of great men depends solely on their own capacities, and not on the means they get to use.
cf. “A bad workman blames his tools”

आ जीवनास्तात् प्रणयाः

आ जीवनास्तात् प्रणयाः कोपास्तत्क्षणभङ्गुराः।
परित्यागाश्च निःसङ्ग भवन्ति हि महात्मनाम्॥
ā jīvanāstāt praṇayāḥ kopāstatkṣaṇabhaṅgurāḥ|
parityāgāśca niḥsaṅga bhavanti hi mahātmanām||
Friendship [with noble persons] lasts for the lifetime; anger is transitory and lasts for a moment only;
They have no desire for wealth, the noble persons.

[Posted on 10 MAY]

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