March 31st


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
माता शत्रुः पिता वैरी येन बालो न पाठितः
न शोभते सभामध्ये हम्समध्ये बको यथा
- चाणक्यनीति

Transliteration:
maataa shatruH pitaa vairI yena baalo na paaThitaH
na shobhate sabhaamadhye hamsamadhye bako yathaa
- chaaNakyanIti

Meaning of the subhAShita:
Mother is an enemy, father is a foe, by whom, the children are not taught. He (the child) does not shine in a gathering, just as a stork amidst swans.

Commentary:
The prime duty of mother and father, as parents, is to educate the children and equip them with life essential skills. Parents need to take a very active role in helping shape their children into good hearted, responsible adults with very strong values. That is what keeps the society surviving and the world going. That is the gift the parents leave to the world and give to their own children. It is alright if they do not make a small fortune to last them 3 generations, but they need to educate them. Such children make the world a happier place and they will be happier themselves.

If otherwise, the children will not shine in their lives. They would prove to be misfits in the society, just as a limpy stork would, amidst a group of graceful swans. Swans are known for their grace. A crane is wobbly and limpy in its gait, in comparison to a swan. A crane in the middle of swans would stick out like a sore thumb. Nobody wants to be that sore thumb. Children, while growing up, do not realize the importance of learning nor its applicability. So, it becomes all the more important for the parents to teach them all the tricks and trades for leading a successful life. That means - education, morals, values and confidence. The parents that do not, are as good as foes of their own children since they are contributing to their downfall, just as rivals would.

Adults, equip youngsters with knowledge. Youngsters, let them!

pada vigrahaH:
माता शत्रुः पिता वैरी येन बालो न पाठितःmaataa shatruH pitaa vairI yena baalo na paaThitaH

न शोभते सभामध्ये हम्समध्ये बको यथाna shobhate sabhaamadhye hamsamadhye bako yathaa


March 30th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
रूपयौवनसम्पन्नाः विशालकुलसम्भवाः
विद्याहीना न शोभन्ते निर्गन्धा इव किम्शुकाः
- चाणक्य नीति

Transliteration:
rUpayauvanasampannaaH vishaalakulasambhavaaH
vidyaahInaa na shobhante nirgandhaa iva kimshukaaH
- chaaNakya nIti

Meaning of the subhAShita:
Those adorned with beauty and youth, (although) born to a splendid lineage, if not learned, do not shine; just as flowers without fragrance, are futile.

Commentary:
The very thought of a flower to one's mind is - colorful, artistic petals, with mesmerizing fragrances. A flower without fragrance doesn't even attract the bees. A flower that doesn't attract the bees is considered futile.

A person may be in the prime of his youth, with the prettiest face as can be. He may be born to the most splendorous of the families too. But if he doesn't have the one main adornment called vidyaa (knowledge), none of the above qualities make a lasting impression. Learning and knowledge have been given prime importance from times immemorial. The verse goes on to say that a person who is not adorned with vidyaa (knowledge) is futile!

Get learning! It is a win win situation!!

pada vigrahaH:
रूप यौवन सम्पन्नाः विशाल कुल सम्भवाः
rUpa yauvana sampannaaH vishaala kula sambhavaaH

विद्या हीना न शोभन्ते निर्गन्धाः इव किम्शुकाः
vidyaa hInaa na shobhante nirgandhaaH iva kimshukaaH

March 29th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
को हि भारः समर्थानां किं दूरं व्यवसायिनाम्
को विदेशः सविद्यानां कः परः प्रियवादिनाम्
- चाणक्य नीति

Transliteration:
ko hi bhaaraH samarthaanaaM kiM dUraM vyavasaayinaam
ko videshaH savidyaanaaM kaH paraH priyavaadinaam
- chaaNakya nIti

Meaning of the subhAShita:
What is heavy for the strong? What is far for the untiring? What is foreign land for the knowledgeable? Who is a stranger to an endearing speaker?

Commentary:
A strong man, is capable of efficiently lifting heavy loads with the greatest of ease. For him, nothing is too heavy to handle. His muscular toning gives him that confidence.

A persistent, untiring, industrious person can constantly focus on the task at hand. For such an individual, no goal is too hard, no destination is too far. His tenacity and persistence make it easy for him to achieve anything.

An educated person can carry himself through the strangest of lands. He is able to deal with unknown situations and circumstances as if in his own backyard. For him, no land is a foreign land. Knowledge stands as his backbone through thick and thin.

A person whose speech is pleasant, can approach and communicate with anyone. For him, no man is a stranger! All beings are appeased by endearing and pleasant words. Anyone yields to such a kind of speech. His heartful, sincere and kind speech, becomes his tool to enter into the heart of another being. When one becomes dear to the heart, he is no longer called a stranger! Hence, no one remains a stranger to the person with pleasant speech.

Speak nicely and sincerely. All beings are pleased by it and yield to it too.

pada vigrahaH:
कः हि भारः समर्थानां किं दूरं व्यवसायिनाम्
kaH hi bhaaraH samarthaanaaM kiM dUraM vyavasaayinaam

कः विदेशः सविद्यानां कः परः प्रिय वादिनाम्
kaH videshaH savidyaanaaM kaH paraH priya vaadinaam

March 28th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
चलन्ति गिरयः कामं युगान्तपवनाहताः
कृच्छ्रेऽपि न चलत्येव धीराणं निश्चलं मनः
- चण्डकौशिक

Transliteration:
chalanti girayaH kaamaM yugaantapavanaahataaH
kRuchChre&pi na chalatyeva dhIraaNaM nishchalaM manaH
- chaNDakaushika

Meaning of the subhAShita:
Mountains move willfully during the apocalypse, struck by the winds. But even in difficult times, the mind of the steadfast remains unperturbed.

Commentary:
The mountains are very steady and strong, yet there is an exceptional scenario. They yield and move due to the gusty winds at an apocalypse. All their tenacity is squashed to an obscure nothing, when annihilation is underway.

But those that are steadfast, brave and courageous, remain strong standing, no matter what the circumstances are. The impending hardships and calamities only make them stronger than ever. There is no exception! Such is the strength of their will power. Their minds remain steady, unperturbed and immensely strong. For, if the mind yields to the hardships, it just takes them away like a twig of grass caught in a whirl wind.

Keep thy focus, dig thy roots deep, yet dare to fly - should be the motto!


pada vigrahaH:
चलन्ति गिरयः कामं युगान्त पवन आहताः
chalanti girayaH kaamaM yugaanta pavana aahataaH

कृच्छ्रे अपि न चलति एव धीराणं निश्चलं मनः
kRuchChre api na chalati eva dhIraaNaM nishchalaM manaH

March 27th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
विद्या नाम नरस्य रूपमधिकं प्रच्छन्न गुप्तं धनम्
विद्या भोगकरी यशः सुखकरी विद्या गुरूणां गुरुः
विद्या बन्धुजनो विदेशगमने विद्याऽपरा देवता
विद्या राजसु पूजिता न हि धनं विद्या विहीनः पशुः

- नीतिशतक, भर्तृहरि 


Transliteration:
vidyaa naama narasya rUpamadhikaM prachChanna guptaM dhanam
vidyaa bhogakarI yashaH sukhakarI vidyaa gurUNaaM guruH
vidyaa bandhujano videshagamane vidyaa&paraa devataa
vidyaa raajasu pUjitaa na hi dhanaM vidyaa vihInaH pashuH
- nItishataka, bhartRuhari

Meaning of the subhAShita:
'Knowledge' is the name of that which enhances the beauty of man; it is his hidden stash of treasure; knowledge brings him name, fame and happiness; knowledge is the teacher of all teachers; knowledge is his kith and kin when on foreign land; knowledge is God itself; knowledge is worshiped amongst kings, not money; one without vidyaa (knowledge) is equivalent to an animal.

Commentary:
Education and knowledge changes a person. It moulds him and shapes him, to have finesse and poise. One's fashion sense doesn't necessarily give him composure and equilibrium. The way one conducts himself at all times, comes from his vidyaa, which gives him discipline and humility.

It is the hidden stash of treasure which can neither be lost nor stolen by anyone else. A bag of coins can be destroyed due to multitudes of reasons, but knowledge is engrained in oneself. The more he shares, the more it multiplies - contrary to any law of physics.

Knowledge brings bliss and not to mention, name and fame too. The satisfaction that comes from learning is unmatched by anything else in this world. Man's basic nature is inquisition. That unquenchable thirst for knowledge is quelled through learning. The mind set of a knowledgeable person is miles away from one who is not. Knowledge is the teacher of all teachers.

Knowledge has no barriers, no boundaries. It is universal all across the world. It has no limitations and it helps one carry himself even on strange lands. His vidyaa becomes his friends and family then.

Kings from eons ago have patronized learned people in their courts. Whatever be the name of the office today, knowledge gets higher priority than wealth. All presidents and politicians profess learning before earning!

The poet even calls an person devoid of vidyaa, as equivalent to an animal and with good reason. The faculty that sets us apart from them, is knowledge. If we don't use it, aren't we equal to the rest of the beings?

Knowledge is divine! Emphasize on learning!

pada vigrahaH:
विद्या नाम नरस्य रूपम् अधिकं प्रच्छन्न गुप्तं धनम्
vidyaa naama narasya rUpam adhikaM prachChanna guptaM dhanam

विद्या भोगकरी यशः सुखकरी विद्या गुरूणां गुरुः
vidyaa bhogakarI yashaH sukhakarI vidyaa gurUNaaM guruH

विद्या बन्धुजनो विदेश गमने विद्या अपरा देवता
vidyaa bandhujano videsha gamane vidyaa aparaa devataa

विद्या राजसु पूजिता न हि धनं विद्या विहीनः पशुः
vidyaa raajasu pUjitaa na hi dhanaM vidyaa vihInaH pashuH

March 26th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
बह्वाशी अल्पसन्तुष्टः सुनिद्रो शीघ्रचेतनः
प्रभुभक्तिश्च शौर्यञ्च मन्तव्याः शट् शुनो गुणाः
- चाण्क्य नीति

Transliteration:
bahvaashI alpasantuShTaH sunidro shIghrachetanaH
prabhubhaktishcha shaurya~jcha mantavyaaH shaT shuno guNaaH
- chaaNkya nIti

Meaning of the subhAShita:
Has many desires, is satiated with little, sleeps deep, alerts quick, faithfulness to the master and courage - honorable are these 6 efficacies of a dog.

Commentary:
There is a lesson to learn from every being, actually 6, from a dog - He has many a desires, also, he eats well when food is offered. But if there isn't any, he is just as happy. He is a sound sleeper, yet he stirs up at the slightest peep. He is ever faithful to his master. The master's own kith and kin may leave his side, but the dog he fed, will never leave him. Back stabbing is a concept unknown to him. He is brave too, will even bet his life if need be, in order to save his master.

Doesn't philosophy tell us to be happy with what we have? Doesn't philosophy tell us to be aware and alert in the mind always? Faithfulness is never put down in any school of thought. And courage of course is needed not just for survival, but for venturing out into the unknown, for bettering ourselves. Hence, there are valuable lessons to be learnt, even from a dog.

Great is his soul, who can recognize the greatness in another being, irrespective of his lineage, social stature or acquaintances.

pada vigrahaH:
बहु आशी अल्प सन्तुष्टः सुनिद्रः शीघ्र चेतनः
bahu aashI alpa santuShTaH sunidraH shIghra chetanaH

प्रभु भक्तिः च शौर्यं च मन्तव्याः शट् शुनो गुणाः
prabhu bhaktiH cha shauryaM cha mantavyaaH shaT shuno guNaaH

March 25th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
गुरोरप्यवलिप्‍तस्य कार्याकार्यमजानतः
उत्पथं प्रतिपन्नस्य कार्यं भवति शासनम्
- महाभारत

Transliteration:
gurorapyavaliptasya kaaryaakaaryamajaanataH
utpathaM pratipannasya kaaryaM bhavati shaasanam
- mahaabhaarata

Meaning of the subhAShita:
Even if he is a teacher or elderly, if he is haughty, astray or doesn't distinguish between befitting and unfit deeds, one should not hesitate to chastise him.

Commentary:
As much as the culture professes respecting elders and serving them, it also gives the youngsters the authority to call them out on their blunders and correct them, when they go astray. When a grown up puts a wrong step, whether aware or unaware of it, the youngsters are not just given the lenience to correct them, it says that it becomes their prime responsibility. dharma should be upheld, irrespective of age or position. If wrong deeds are coming from a teacher, parent or king, the position or office he holds, won't do much good in terms of the fruit of the deeds. Hence, virtue, righteousness, dharma have no age restrictions. Whether it comes from the mouth of a king, soldier, father, son, mother, daughter, teacher, student, it remains the same. It is the universal truth.

Hold up the truth. Don't hesitate to stand up for the truth, no matter what.

pada vigrahaH:
गुरोः अपि अवलिप्‍तस्य कार्य अकार्यम् अजानतः
guroH api avaliptasya kaarya akaaryam ajaanataH

उत्पथं प्रतिपन्नस्य कार्यं भवति शासनम्
utpathaM pratipannasya kaaryaM bhavati shaasanam

March 24th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
पिता रत्नाकरो यस्य लक्ष्मीर्यस्य सहोदरी
शङ्खो भिक्षाटनं कुर्यान्नादत्तमुपतिष्ठते
- चाणक्य नीति

Transliteration:
pitaa ratnaakaro yasya lakShmIryasya sahodarI
sha~nkho bhikShaaTanaM kuryaannaadattamupatiShThate
- chaaNakya nIti

Meaning of the subhAShita:
His father is the ocean, Goddess Lakshmi herself is his sister. A conch is used for begging alms, justice is not done by it.

Commentary:
A conch is born in the ocean. So, the ocean (who is also the maker of abundant precious gems), is his father. Goddess Lakshmi, who is the Goddess of wealth, was also born from the ocean. Hence, she would be the conch's sister. Despite a lineage of such order, in the hands of a beggar, a conch gets used for the purpose of begging. A beggar roams from door to door, begging for food. To grab the attention of the people inside, he picks up a conch and blows on it! To him, the origination or the kin of the conch don't matter. He puts it to the best use, as per his wisdom.

That is exactly what happens in the world. People apply the available resources to the best of their knowledge. It doesn't matter, the value or the valuability of the resources themselves. This happens day in and day out. Whether it is misusing the natural resources or thrashing the planet, mankind today is not realizing the worth of those resources nor the harm it is causing the entire generations to come... That doesn't demean the value of the resources themselves, whatsoever! A diamond is a diamond, whether one recognizes it or not.

In today's world, buzzing with multitudes of materialistic comforts, shouldn't we give a little thought to the usability and also the liabilities of the luxuries we have around us today. How are we able to get them and at what cost? Think about it.

pada vigrahaH:
पिता रत्नाकरः यस्य लक्ष्मीः यस्य सह उदरी
pitaa ratnaakaraH yasya lakShmIH yasya saha udarI

शङ्खो भिक्षा अटनं कुर्यात् न अदत्तम् उपतिष्ठते
sha~gkho bhikShaa aTanaM kuryaat na adattam upatiShThate

March 23rd


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
अणुमात्रम् मनस्तस्मादाशा नाम लतोद्गता
तस्या नालमुपघ्नाय भुवनानि चतुर्दशः
- आश्चर्यचूडामणिव्याख्या

Transliteration:
aNumaatram manastasmaadaashaa naama latodgataa
tasyaa naalamupaghnaaya bhuvanaani chaturdashaH
- aashcharyachUDaamaNivyaakhyaa

Meaning of the subhAShita:
Merely atom sized is the mind, in it, a creeper named 'desire' sprouts. For its windings to spread, the fourteen worlds (fall short).

Commentary:
As per common knowledge - a pint sized can, can hold a pint of water; a quart sized mug, holds a quart of juice; or, a gallon sized pail, holds a gallon of liquid. But man can turn this common sense rule, upside down in a jiffy!

The mind is barely the size of an atom. It is imaginary and doesn't even take any physical space. But when 'seeds of greed' are sown, a creeper named 'desire' sprouts. Very quickly, it encompasses everything that comes its way, obscuring the true value of the people around. Also, it keeps growing at a monstrous pace that, as much room for growth is given, its potential to grow increases exponentially! The poets says that even the 14 worlds become small under the radius of desire!! It encompasses anything and everything, without even considering its authenticity or validity.

The best way to stop the weed of desire from spreading to destructive proportions, is - nipping it in the bud.

As soon as desire knocks on the door, hold up a sign - 'Desire, beware!' :).

pada vigrahaH:
अणु मात्रम् मनः तस्मात् आशा नाम लता उद्गता
aNu maatram manaH tasmaat aashaa naama lata udgataa

तस्याः नालम् उपघ्नाय भुवनानि चतुर्दशः
tasyaaH naalam upaghnaaya bhuvanaani chaturdashaH

March 22nd


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
अभ्यासाद्धार्यते विद्या कुलं शीलेन धार्यते
गुणेन ज्ञायते त्वार्यः कोपो नेत्रेण गम्यते
- चाणक्य नीति

Transliteration:
abhyaasaaddhaaryate vidyaa kulaM shIlena dhaaryate
guNena j~naayate tvaaryaH kopo netreNa gamyate
- chaaNakya nIti

Meaning of the subhAShita:
Knowledge is borne by practice; a lineage is carried in its integrity; the honorable are held through efficacy; anger is expressed through the eyes.

Commentary:
1. Learning something is not sufficient. It needs to be put to use through practice. Like they say, 'practice makes perfect'. The efficiency of knowledge is clearly evident when applied. One who has enough practice executes the task with ease than the one who only learnt it. So, one's knowledge is graded according to their practice of it.

2. A family's morals and values are expressed through a person's integrity and conduct. His respectability and value come through his morality than his material possessions.

3. Whether one is born in a higher caste or lower caste (a/c social norms), it does not define his nobility. His greatness comes from his character and how he conducts himself when dealing with others.

4. This is an interesting one. One's anger and displeasure need not be expressed in words or deeds. No matter what one says or does, his true temperament is reflected in his eyes. Like they say, 'eyes are the windows to one's soul', it gives away one's true feelings, irrespective of their speech or actions. Hence, the best way to communicate with another person, is looking into his eyes. The eye contact is capable of communicating a lot more than mere words. It not only reveals one's true feelings, it also compels them to be honest. Now, that's a bonus!

Beware, take care.

pada vigrahaH:
अभ्यासात् धार्यते विद्या कुलं शीलेन धार्यते
abhyaasaat dhaaryate vidyaa kulaM shIlena dhaaryate

गुणेन ज्ञायते तु आर्यः कोपः नेत्रेण गम्यते
guNena j~jaayate tu aaryaH kopaH netreNa gamyate

March 21st


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
यथा काष्ठमयो हस्ती यथा चर्ममयो मृगः
पुमान्यश्चानधीयानः त्रयस्ते नाम बिभ्रति
- मनुस्मृति

Transliteration:
yathaa kaaShThamayo hastI yathaa charmamayo mRugaH
pumaanyashchaanadhIyaanaH trayaste naama bibhrati
- manusmRuti

Meaning of the subhAShita:
Just as an elephant made of wood, a deer made of leather, is a man who is not learned. These 3 are for name sake only.

Commentary:
On seeing an elephant made of wood, do people stand aside and give way? On seeing an artificially made deer, although from deer skin, does one react like they do on seeing the real deer. They bear the names as a deer and an elephant, only due to their similarity in appearance to the real animals.

Similarly, a human being who is not educated and learned, is a human for namesake alone. He is called a human because of his resemblance to the rest of the human race. He also has two eyes, two ears, two hands, two feet, two thumbs and no tail, like the rest of them! But just these features are not enough to make him human. Just as the lifeless elephant and deer did not have the same value as the live animals, so does a human who is not learned. He does not command the same respect as his learned peers.

The faculty that distinguishes humans from animals is wisdom and speech. If they are not put to use or not applied towards a higher goal, they are as good as the lifeless animals who were just bearing a resemblance in appearance to the real ones.

Stay focused and do not put off learning!

pada vigrahaH:
यथा काष्ठ मयः हस्ती यथा चर्म मयः मृगः
yathaa kaaShTha mayaH hastI yathaa charma mayaH mRugaH

पुमान्यः च अनधीयानः त्रयः ते नाम बिभ्रति
pumaanyaH cha anadhIyaanaH trayaH te naama bibhrati

March 20th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
धर्म एव हतो हन्ति धर्मो रक्षति रक्षितः
तस्माद्धर्मो न हन्तव्यः मा नो धर्मो हतोऽवधीत् 

- मनुस्मृति

Transliteration:
dharma eva hato hanti dharmo rakShati rakShitaH
tasmaaddharmo na hantavyaH maa no dharmo hato.vadhIt
- manusmRuti

Meaning of the subhAShita:
dharma only destroys (those) that destroy it. dharma protects those that protect it. Hence, dharma should not be destroyed. Know that - dharma that is destroyed, destroys.

Commentary:
When an animal or a person is destroyed and killed, it will not have the vitality in it, to come back and strike. Also, when a being is protected, it takes refuge and shelters under its protector.

But this rule does not apply to dharma(virtue). Virtue is such an aspect, when killed, it strikes back and kills its killer! The words look strong for a reason, because, such IS the strength of dharma! One way or the other, one day or the other, the offender of dharma has to pay the price. No pardons, no excuses, no concessions!

Also, dharma protects its protectors. Those that abide by dharma, will always be protected and taken care of. Like a mother protects her child, like a bear protects her cubs, dharma takes care of those, that care to take care of dharma!

One's deeds and thoughts should, at all times, be coherent with dharma. Doing dharma not only protects the doer, it also elevates him from his current platform. He grows as an individual, strengthens his visions and broadens his outlook. He feels happy, contented and peaceful. His heart is cheerful and he, as a person, is at ease. There is absolutely no downside to doing dharma.

Be virtuous, do dharma!

pada vigrahaH:
धर्म एव हतो हन्ति धर्मः रक्षति रक्षितः
dharma eva hato hanti dharmaH rakShati rakShitaH

तस्मात् धर्मः न हन्तव्यः मा नः धर्मः हतः अवधीत् 
tasmaat dharmaH na hantavyaH maa naH dharmaH hataH avadhIt

March 19th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
ईप्सितं मनसः सर्वं कस्य सम्पद्यते सुखम्
दैवाऽयुक्तं यतः सर्वं तस्मात्सन्तोषमाश्रयेत्
- चाणक्य नीति

Transliteration:
IpsitaM manasaH sarvaM kasya sampadyate sukham
daivaa&yuktaM yataH sarvaM tasmaatsantoShamaashrayet
- chaaNakya nIti

Meaning of the subhAShita:
How many (people) procure all the pleasures that are desired by the mind? Everything is as God appointed it to be, hence, practice happiness.

Commentary:
Not everyone in this world gets all their desires fulfilled, or, should we say, no one in this world gets all their desires fulfilled! We wouldn't be called humans, if our every wish was a command and would be fruitful at every turn of life! Every outcome will be just as He, the Supreme power, desires it to be. His law is unquestionable as we are unaware of all the variables that go into the equation. Any wish is either granted or rejected as per our efforts, as per our dedication, as per the lessons we need to learn and also, as per our deeds from previous births.

When an outcome can't be changed, one should learn to be happy with any result he gets. Because, no matter how much he frets, it won't change the end result. So, why not take it in a stride and be happy always! That is why the poet say, 'practice happiness', 'take shelter in happiness'. Whether the result is desirable or not, the happiness should remain unaltered.

Be Happy, no matter what!

pada vigrahaH:
ईप्सितं मनसः सर्वं कस्य सम्पद्यते सुखम्
IpsitaM manasaH sarvaM kasya sampadyate sukham

दैव आयुक्तं यतः सर्वं तस्मात् सन्तोषम् आश्रयेत्
daiva aayuktaM yataH sarvaM tasmaat santoSham aashrayet

March 18th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
चला लक्ष्मीश्चलाः प्राणाश्चलं जीवित-यौवनम्
चलाचले च संसारे धर्म एको हि निश्चलः
- चाणक्य नीति

Transliteration:
chalaa lakShmIshchalaaH praaNaashchalaM jIvita-yauvanam
chalaachale cha saMsaare dharma eko hi nishchalaH
- chaaNakya nIti

Meaning of the subhAShita:
Variable is wealth, unsteady is life's vital breath, changeable is life and youth. In this world of steady and unsteady, virtue is the one and only firm (aspect).

Commentary:
One may be rich to the brim and in an instant his riches could be burnt to ashes. A hale and healthy person could die, without even giving a hint, his breath could stop. It is a know fact that youth is short lived and passes on fast, so is life.

In a world of uncertainties and variable factors, the tendency is to hang on to something that is itself unstable! How can a sinking boat, support a being from drowning? There is no shore, until absolution is attained. If he wants to stay above water, he needs to hang on to a boulder that is unperturbed by the waves of the ocean. It does not get lashed by the waves or the wind. During high tide, it may look hidden under the water, but when the tide goes down, the rock stands where it always did. Virtue or dharma is the one lone boulder that is eternal and stays on, whether the person hangs on to it or not.

Why hang on to the impermanent materialistic comforts when, we are offered a reliable support to get through life. That makes the journey through the ocean of samsaara much easier and pleasanter! Again, the choice is ours and ours alone.

pada vigrahaH:
चलाः लक्ष्मीः चलाः प्राणाः चलं जीवित-यौवनम्
chalaaH lakShmIH chalaaH praaNaaH chalaM jIvita-yauvanam

चल अचले च संसारे धर्म एको हि निश्चलः
chala achale cha saMsaare dharma eko hi nishchalaH

March 17th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
अधनाः धनमिच्छन्ति वाचं चैव चतुष्पदाः
मानवाः स्वर्गमिच्छन्ति मोक्षमिच्छन्ति देवताः
- चाणक्य नीति

Transliteration:
adhanaaH dhanamichChanti vaachaM chaiva chatuShpadaaH
maanavaaH swargamichChanti mokShamichChanti devataaH
- chaaNakya nIti

Meaning of the subhAShita:
The penniless desire money, the four footed desire speech, humans desire heaven, the Gods desire absolution.

Commentary:
Desire is a very strong noose. Everybody comes under its grip and escaping the snare is a very tough ordeal.

1. The poor aspire for money. Money has an astonishing trait - no matter how much one has, he is not satiated with it. The more he indulges in it, the more his thirst increases!

2. Even the 4 legged animals are not spared from the clutches of desire. They long for the faculty that was not bestowed on them - the power of speech. They envy humans who posses that capability and constantly aspire that for themselves.

3. Humans have the vision of heaven to be - a place of bliss. They aspire for attaining that. All their actions and thoughts are, as if, a ladder to raise themselves to that spot.

4. Gods are not spared from desire either. The Gods of the heaven too, shall run out of their virtues and come back to the circle of life. So, their aspiration is liberation, absolution, nirvaaNa.

Hence, no one is devoid of desires. Everyone has it in one form or the other. It is upto oneself to choose what kind of desire he wants to possess. It could be to acquire more wealth or to attain mokSha (absolution).

If there is no choice but to have a desire, then why not have the one which aims at a higher good!

pada vigrahaH:
अधनाः धनम् इच्छन्ति वाचं च एव चतुष्पदाः
adhanaaH dhanam ichChanti vaachaM cha eva chatuShpadaaH

मानवाः स्वर्गम् इच्छन्ति मोक्षम् इच्छन्ति देवताः
maanavaaH swargam ichChanti mokSham ichChanti devataaH

March 16th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
सर्वथा सुकरं मित्रं दुष्करं परिपालनम्
अनित्यत्वात्तु चित्तानां मतिरल्पेऽपि भिद्यते
- रामायण, किष्किन्दाकण्ड

Transliteration:
sarvathaa sukaraM mitraM duShkaraM paripaalanam
anityatvaattu chittaanaaM matiralpe.pi bhidyate
- raamaayaNa, kiShkindaakaNDa

Meaning of the subhAShita:
It is easy to earn friends, but very hard to keep. As the mind is transient, it (friendship) can be broken by a petty conflict.

Commentary:
In this world, making friends is the easiest chore. Then, the comorodry flies off well too initially. One might find a lot of common interests between themselves and enjoy the same kinds of activities too. Suddenly, come one day, it is very easy to have a misunderstanding and put an end to the whole relationship itself.

The verse says, it is very easy to make friends but very hard to nurture and nourish the friendship. The reason is the mind. By nature, it is unstable, transient, uncertain and ephemeral. So, the slightest tiff can cause a rift and pull the people apart.

Beware of such causes. Do not ruin a good friendship due to petty misunderstandings.

pada vigrahaH:
सर्वथा सुकरं मित्रं दुष्करं परिपालनम्
sarvathaa sukaraM mitraM duShkaraM paripaalanam

अनित्यत्वात् तु चित्तानां मतिः अल्पे अपि भिद्यते
anityatvaat tu chittaanaaM matiH alpe api bhidyate

March 15th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
अपरे काव्यसंसारे कविरेकः प्रजापतिः
यथास्मै रोचते विश्वं तथेदं परिवर्तते
-
ध्वन्यालोक

Transliteration:
apare kaavyasaMsaare kavirekaH prajaapatiH
yathaasmai rochate vishvaM tathedaM parivartate
- dhvanyaaloka

Meaning of the subhAShita:
In another world of poetry, the poet alone is Lord Brahma. However he imagines, so does that world transpire.

Commentary:
Lord Brahma is the creator of the world. His creations are intangible to humans. They cannot change the laws of nature as they are defined. But there is nothing impalpable to the imagination of the poet! He can make a monkey fly or an elephant skip. He can make waterfalls in thin air or horses travel to another planet! It is upto his wildest imagination how he creates the world of poetry and entices the reader. The reader, although knows that the poet's imagination is a fiction, immerses himself in the imaginary world and enjoys the ride too. The reader imagines the poetic world and sees it through the eyes of the poet. Here, anything is possible! The imaginary world can prove as a safe haven when the stress of real life runs high.

Don't have to be a poet to let your imaginations run wild!

pada vigrahaH:
अपरे काव्य संसारे कविः एकः प्रजापतिः
apare kaavya saMsaare kaviH ekaH prajaapatiH

यथ अस्मै रोचते विश्वं तथ इदं परिवर्तते
yatha asmai rochate vishvaM tatha idaM parivartate

March 14th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
मनसा चिन्तितं कार्यं वाचा नैव प्रकाशयेत्
मन्त्रेण रक्षयेद्गूडं कार्ये चापि नियोजयेत्
- चाणक्य नीति

Transliteration:
manasaa chintitaM kaaryaM vaachaa naiva prakaashayet
mantreNa rakShayedgUDaM kaarye chaapi niyojayet
- chaaNakya nIti

Meaning of the subhAShita:
Do not manifest into words, the deeds thought in your mind. Protect it as if it were a secret spell and also, empower it into action.

Commentary:
When one thinks of performing a deed, especially a good deed, he wants remuneration from everyone around him. It is generally seen that he creates much ado about it, well ahead of time, so that all eyes are on him when he is executing his idea. This is a big NO NO, for many reasons.

He may not start the job like he spoke about. His ideas may change. The resources available may change and hence alter the outcome that was anticipated. He may not even be able to start the job for multiple reasons. The pressure for performing in order to keep his word, may affect his actual actions. Feeding ones own need for attention and appreciation will not allow him to offer his level best, to the task at hand. Most of all, it is not in the spirit of doing the good deed itself, as much as feeding the ego!

Hence, work more, talk less.

pada vigrahaH:
मनसा चिन्तितं कार्यं वाचा न एव प्रकाशयेत्
manasaa chintitaM kaaryaM vaachaa na eva prakaashayet

मन्त्रेण रक्षयेत् गूडं कार्ये च अपि नियोजयेत्
mantreNa rakShayet gUDaM kaarye cha api niyojayet

March 13th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
कुग्रामवासः कुजनस्य सेवा
कुभोजनं क्रोधमुखी च भार्या
मूर्खश्च पुत्रो विधवा च कन्या
दहन्ति चैतानि जनं विनाग्निम्
- सुभाषितरत्नसमुच्चय

Transliteration:
kugraamavaasaH kujanasya sevaa
kubhojanaM krodhamukhI cha bhaaryaa
mUrkhashcha putro vidhavaa cha kanyaa
dahanti chaitaani janaM vinaagnim
- subhaaShitaratnasamuchchaya

Meaning of the subhAShita:
Life in an ill-fated village, serving the evil, banal food, a wrathful wife, imbecile son, also a widowed daughter - these burn one without even the requirement of fire.

Commentary:
1. Living in unfavorable circumstance and conditions is not fun. Living around people who do not have any value for dharma is certainly not a pleasant thing.

2. When having to serve the evil, one has to kill his own conscience. There is no hell worse than having to fell ones inner voice and slug along life, under an evil doer.

3. All the efforts and endeavors one undertakes, is for the sake of his stomach. Whether he is rich or poor, at the end of the day, his efforts are to satiate his palette, one way or another. If that food is stale and unhealthy, that negates all his efforts so far. He would neither enjoy eating such food, nor does it assist in nurturing his health. It only aids in slowly killing the person.

4. A wife is the back bone of the household in many respects. She needs to be strong and yet pleasant. She serves as the shock absorber for the entire family. If it is not effective enough, the family doesn't get a cushion from calamities. If she is always wrathful and angry-faced, the husband cannot look forward to coming to a relaxing and peaceful place called home. Pleasantness of the wife is a very integral part of a successful household.

5. Any parent wants his children to prosper in life, even after they have passed on. In this regard, they equip their children with education, for, that alone is the tool for leading a happy life. What if the son is an imbecile and refuses to learn? The parents of such children suffer anxiety through out their lives.

6. No parent wants to see their offspring suffer any kind of pain. The smallest infliction on the child shakes them up. Then, how can parents see their daughter suffer the loss of her husband. That is a death sentence to her parents.

All these above circumstances are equated to death, or may be more. When a person dies, he is burnt on a pyre, with fire. But any of these above circumstances is capable of burning a person alive, even without needing fire.

Some of these circumstances are destiny. But whatever is within our control, shouldn't we take charge and make sure that our lives and those around us, are as happy as we can make it!

pada vigrahaH:
कुग्राम वासः कुजनस्य सेवा
kugraama vaasaH kujanasya sevaa

कुभोजनं क्रोध मुखी च भार्या
kubhojanaM krodha mukhI cha bhaaryaa

मूर्खः च पुत्रः विधवा च कन्या
mUrkhaH cha putraH vidhavaa cha kanyaa

दहन्ति च एतानि जनं विना अग्निम्
dahanti cha etaani janaM vinaa agnim

March 12th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
परोपदेशे पाण्डित्यं सर्वेषां सुकरं नृणाम्
धर्मे स्वीयमनुष्ठानं कस्यचित्तु महात्मनः
- समयोचितपद्यमालिका

Transliteration:
paropadeshe paaNDityaM sarveShaaM sukaraM nRuNaam
dharme swIyamanuShThaanaM kasyachittu mahaatmanaH
- samayochitapadyamaalikaa

Meaning of the subhAShita:
When advising others, it is very easy for everyone to show off their erudition. But when it comes to oneself following in the path of dharma, it is possible for a select few mahaatmaas (alone).

Commentary:
When one falters or makes a the slightest mistake, everyone around will offer their opinions and thoughts generously. They won't hesitate for a minute, to stop and think, if their advise is wanted or not. Everyone eagerly offer their expertise, show off their knowledge bank and make a big show about their prowess. But apparently, this is the simplest thing anyone can do! Learning a bunch of philosophical words won't make a person of great character.

When it comes to oneself and staying on the path of dharma, only a very few great souls (mahaatmaa-s) are able to keep their feet on the ground, yet keep their sights on higher goals. Than making huge speeches from a podium, their focus is on - following it themselves every step of the way and analyzing their thoughts and actions incessantly. The strength in their words comes from the very fact that their thoughts, actions and speech are all in sync. They follow what they say. They are not pompous about their scholarship either. They are the true mahaatmaas.

Preach what you practice and practice what you preach!

pada vigrahaH:
पर उपदेशे पाण्डित्यं सर्वेषां सुकरं नृणाम्
para upadeshe paaNDityaM sarveShaaM sukaraM nRuNaam
धर्मे स्वीयम् अनुष्ठानं कस्यचित् तु महा अत्मनः
dharme swIyam anuShThaanaM kasyachit tu mahaa atmanaH

March 11th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
नमन्ति फलिता वृक्षा नमन्ति च बुधा जनाः
शुष्ककाष्ठानि मूर्खाश्च भिद्यन्ते न नमन्ति च
- सुभाषितसुधानिधि

Transliteration:
namanti phalitaa vRukShaa namanti cha budhaa janaaH
shuShkakaaShThaani mUrkhaashcha bhidyante na namanti cha
- subhaaShitasudhaanidhi

Meaning of the subhAShita:
Fruit bearing trees are bent and so are the learned, in prostration. Dry twigs and the imbecile do not bend and are slit and broken.

Commentary:
A tree filled with fruits can not stand upright, as if in pride. It bends down and offers its fruit to the world, in humility. Similarly, the learned and wise people, bow down in prostration to the guru, the supreme power in each individual. They do not pride themselves and display arrogance towards other beings. They are neither haughty nor high strung due to their knowledge, rather, they are humble and compassionate because of their knowledge.

Whereas, dry sapless trees stand stiff and straight, as if nothing can affect them. But one fine day, they get felled by someone or become fuel for some wild fire! Similarly, only fools think highly of themselves and do not care for true knowledge. If they attain the same fate as the dry twigs of a sapless tree, why should one be surprised!

Humility is an adornment of the wise! Be humble.

pada vigrahaH:
नमन्ति फलिता वृक्षा नमन्ति च बुधा जनाः
namanti phalitaa vRukShaa namanti cha budhaa janaaH

शुष्क काष्ठानि मूर्खाः च भिद्यन्ते न नमन्ति च
shuShka kaaShThaani mUrkhaaH cha bhidyante na namanti cha

March 10th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
ईर्ष्यी घृणी त्वसन्तुष्टः क्रोधनो नित्यशङ्कितः
परभाग्योपजीवी च षडेते दुःखभागिनः
- हितोपदेश, मित्रलाभ

Transliteration:
IrShyI ghRuNI tvasantuShTaH krodhano nityasha~gkitaH
parabhaagyopajIvI cha ShaDete duHkhabhaaginaH
- hitopadesha, mitralaabha

Meaning of the subhAShita:
The jealous, the repugnant, the un-contented, the resentful, the ever doubting and those living off of other people's wealth - These six are eligible for sorrow.

Commentary:
1. Jealousy towards other people yields no good. The person who is jealous is constantly plotting against his so called 'enemy'. Hence can never be peaceful.

2. Repugnance, distaste or aversion towards anyone or anything can breed no beautiful thoughts along with them. Such a person is always miserable.

3. One with no contentment is constantly working his mind towards acquiring something more to satisfy him. There is no calmness in such a mind.

4. A resentful and angry person is never happy with anything or anyone. He expresses displeasure, every step of the way. How can pleasure even come near such a person.

5. A doubting Thomas, a skeptic, has no trust in any aspect of life. He needs constant assurance and physical evidence to make him believe every single dimension. Such an individual, probably can't even sleep in peace.

6. One living off of someone else's wealth has to constantly think of that someone literally! If the other person loses his source of income, so does he!! The parasitic guilt that accompanies the scenario is a whole other issue to deal with. How can such a person be happy!

Any person who is not at peace with himself, is always miserable, is not calm, not happy, not pleasant nor satisfied - how can delight come near such an individual! The verse even says, such a person almost deserves to be sorrowful, meaning he can't escape sorrow.

Don't worry, be happy!

pada vigrahaH:
ईर्ष्यी घृणी तु असन्तुष्टः क्रोधनो नित्य शङ्कितः
IrShyI ghRuNI tu asantuShTaH krodhano nitya sha~gkitaH

पर भाग्य उपजीवी च षट् एते दुःख भागिनः
para bhaagya upajIvI cha ShaT ete duHkha bhaaginaH

March 9th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
अहंममाभिमानोत्थैः कामलोभादिभिर्मलैः
वीतं यदा मनः शुद्धमदुःखमसुखं समम्
- भागवत

Transliteration:
ahaMmamaabhimaanotthaiH kaamalobhaadibhirmalaiH
vItaM yadaa manaH shuddhamaduHkhamasukhaM samam
- bhaagavata

Meaning of the subhAShita:
When the mind is purified of the impurities like desire, avarice, etc., generated due to arrogant feelings like me and mine, (then) absence of pain or absence of pleasure, feel equal.

Commentary:
The minute ego enters ones mind, it causes havoc. It brings in a hoard of other unwanted faculties along like - desire, anger, greed, affliction, arrogance and jealousy. Each one of these is capable of causing tremendous pain, when all these come as a package, it is just a disaster waiting to happen!

When the mind is purified of such impurities, the real picture of life and the purpose of life, becomes crystal clear. In that light, one doesn't feel any differently in either the absence of pleasure or the absence of pain. (It is interesting how the poet has said 'absence of pain' and 'absence of pleasure'. Isn't absence of pain, pleasure and absence of pleasure, pain. Not really! A pure mind, in the absence of pain doesn't get excited nor does it feel depressed in the absence of pleasure. Hence such an expression!) He will be able to take both with the same approach and live life like a lotus leaf in water. Although a lotus leaf is born in water and thrives in water, it does not get attached to it, nor does the water affect or tarnish it. Such is the approach of a pure mind, towards life and its nature.

pada vigrahaH:
अहं मम अभिमान उत्थैः काम लोभ आदिभिः मलैः
ahaM mama abhimaana utthaiH kaama lobha aadibhiH malaiH

वीतं यदा मनः शुद्धम् अदुःखम् असुखं समम्
vItaM yadaa manaH shuddham aduHkham asukhaM samam

March 8th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
अप्रार्थितानि दुःखानि यथैवायान्ति देहिनाम्
सुखान्यपि तथा मन्ये दैन्यमत्रातिरिच्यते
- सुभाषितसुधानिधि

Transliteration:
apraarthitaani duHkhaani yathaivaayaanti dehinaam
sukhaanyapi tathaa manye dainyamatraatirichyate
- subhaaShitasudhaanidhi

Meaning of the subhAShita:
Just as sorrows come and unite with beings (ones with bodies) without asking for, so do the pleasures, I deem. But only (in sorrow), affliction is predominant.

Commentary:
As beings, the spontaneous response to sorrow is, 'why do I always get this sorrow?' Affliction and misery come along, as if they are a package deal, accompanying the sorrow. We are depressed, tense and anxious all the time...

When blissful, we almost NEVER hear anyone say 'why did I get so much pleasure! Why does this always happen to me?' One indulges in his comforts and happiness, blissfully, without a peep.

The poet says he deems that, pleasure or pain, both come without asking for them. It is not in one's hands to pray for neither joys nor sorrows. Neither stops because we don't want it, nor comes because we want it to! Both come naturally one after the other. Like a wheel they turn cycles. (What was at the highest point has to certainly go to the lowest too, before it comes back to the highest position again...). There is no difference in the nature of either of them. But the only difference is the agony that one feels when in sorrow.

Why validate the misery by feeling miserable! Why not take it in a stride and say 'this too shall pass...'. Because, no matter what we say, no state will linger on and stagnate forever. Then, why make the feeling linger...

pada vigrahaH:
अप्रार्थितानि दुःखानि यथ एव अयान्ति देहिनाम्
apraarthitaani duHkhaani yatha eva ayaanti dehinaam

सुखानि अपि तथा मन्ये दैन्यम् अत्र अतिरिच्यते
sukhaani api tathaa manye dainyam atra atirichyate

March 7th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
आरोप्यते शिला शैले यथा यत्नेन भूयसा
निपात्यते सुखेनाधस्तथात्मा गुणदोषयोः
- हितोपदेश, सुहृद्भेद

Transliteration:
aaropyate shilaa shaile yathaa yatnena bhUyasaa
nipaatyate sukhenaadhastathaatmaa guNadoShayoH
- hitopadesha, suhRudbheda

Meaning of the subhAShita:
With tremendous effort, a big stone could be raised on to the top of a mountain but it can be very easily rolled down. Same is the case with the soul, the efficacies and the defects.

Commentary:
If a stone was required to be carried up a steep mountain, it takes a great lot of strenuous effort on one's part. When in needs to be brought down hill, all it takes is one gentle push and then gravity is in charge. The stone rolls all the way down, making it difficult to even make a pause in between!

The exact same is the scenario with the आत्मा (aatmaa - soul). The aatmaa needs to climb the huge, hard, steep and rugged mountain of संसार (saMsaara - worldly existance). It takes a lot of effort to climb uphill. That climbing is done with the assistance of गुणाः (guNaaH - efficacies, merits, virtues). It takes the aatmaa, a lot of guNa-s to put one step in front of another, in order to conquer the uphill trek. But a small effort in the other direction, a gentle push given by the दोषाः (doShaaH - defects, blemishes, faults, weaknesses - can be given multitudes of names), very easily rolls the aatmaa down the hill, in an instant, negating all the efforts in climbing up so far! Then the aatmaa doesn't even have a hold on how far down it will reach. If there is a pivot strong enough on the way, it might stop midway, else, it will fall all the way down and then some (because of the potential gained during the rolling :).

One needs to be very cautious about every action and thought. It can either be a guNa or a doSha. They need to be entertained accordingly, if the conquest of saMsaara is the goal!

pada vigrahaH:
आरोप्यते शिला शैले यथा यत्नेन भूयसा
aaropyate shilaa shaile yathaa yatnena bhUyasaa

निपात्यते सुखेन् आधः तथा अत्मा गुण दोषयोः
nipaatyate sukhen aadhaH tathaa atmaa guNa doShayoH

March 6th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
लोभेनाविष्टो नरो वित्तं वीक्षते नैव चापदम्
दुग्धं पश्यति मार्जारो यथा न लगुडाहतिम्

Transliteration:
lobhenaaviShTo naro vittaM vIkShate naiva chaapadam
dugdhaM pashyati maarjaaro yathaa na laguDaahatim

Meaning of the subhAShita:
A person filled with greed sees the money, not the troubles; just as a cat sees the milk and not the baton blows.

Commentary:
When a cat sees milk, it just wants to lap it all up. It will not, for one moment, think of the blows it receives with the stick, for doing so. (ASPCA - American Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, may sue one for this action :) That is what happens when a cat spills over a vessel of milk in the kitchen. The cat will be chased out of the kitchen or some times, brandished with a stick. But the cat will not think of it when it sees the milk. It just focuses on getting the milk, not the hardship that accompanies its action. Moreover, it repeats the actions every time, without learning its lesson.

Similarly, a person engulfed in greed, sets his eyes only on acquiring more and more, wealth and money. He will not stop to think about the repercussions he has to face or the troubles that accompany his actions. He sets his focus on the materialistic pleasures that bring in a hoard of other troubles and loses focus on the bigger picture repeatedly.

Think before you act, then more than half the troubles will be eradicated.

pada vigrahaH:
लोभेन अविष्टः नरो वित्तं वीक्षते न एव च अपदम्
lobhena aviShTaH naro vittaM vIkShate na eva cha apadam

दुग्धं पश्यति मार्जारः यथा न लगुड आहतिम्
dugdhaM pashyati maarjaaraH yathaa na laguDa aahatim

March 5th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
अरे भज हरेर्नाम क्षेमधाम क्षणे क्षणे
बहिस्सरति निःश्वासे विश्वासः कः प्रवर्तते
- गुरुकौमुदी

Transliteration:
are bhaja harernaama kShemadhaama kShaNe kShaNe
bahissarati niHshvaase vishvaasaH kaH pravartate
- gurukaumudI

Meaning of the subhAShita:
Oh (soul)! Chant the auspicious name of shrI hari every second. Where is the faith that the breath that has gone out will come back in?

Commentary:
One should be thinking of the Almighty (shrIman naaraayaNa) every single moment of the day, constantly. One can choose any deity, that is a personal choice. But that connection and faith, is common to all choices! The verse says, 'do not procrastinate thinking of the Lord, even for one moment. What is the guarantee that the air we breath out will come back in!' We breathe in and breathe out constantly. The one thing that is certain for every being, is death. There is no saying who will breathe their last at which moment. So can't save good deeds for another day. Every single deed, action and thought should be accompanied with 'aarpaNa bhaava' (spirit of offering). That makes life worthwhile. That makes one live life with no regrets, because every action has already been executed with a higher prospect in mind. There was no selfishness. That makes one's life satisfactory, significant and meaningful.

pada vigrahaH:
अरे भज हरेः नाम क्षेमधाम क्षणे क्षणे
are bhaja hareH naama kShemadhaama kShaNe kShaNe

बहिः सरति निःश्वासे विश्वासः कः प्रवर्तते
bahiH sarati niHshvaase vishvaasaH kaH pravartate

March 4th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
चित्तस्य शुद्धये कर्म न तु वस्तूपलब्धये
वस्तुसिद्धिर्विचारेण न किञ्चित् कर्मकोटिभिः
- विवेकचूडामणि

Transliteration:
chittasya shuddhaye karma na tu vastUpalabdhaye
vastusiddhirvichaareNa na ki~nchit karmakoTibhiH
- vivekachUDaamaNi

Meaning of the subhAShita:
Action is for the cleansing of the mind, not the attainment of knowledge (आत्म वस्तु विचार - aatma vastu vichaara - knowledge about the soul). 'aatma jnaana' is attained through self inquiry, not by performing countless deeds.

Commentary:
Actions are essential for the cleansing of one's mind. But performing innumerous actions will not lead towards the knowledge about oneself. That knowledge is attained only through constant self-inquiry and reflection about oneself on a constant basis. It is not a dish that someone can prepare and present it to someone else. This inquiry has to come from within oneself and it stays with the inquirer alone. Scriptures, teachers and books can only lead one in that direction. But what each person achieves using these tools, is entirely up to himself. How one analyzes the teachings and reflects upon himself defines the kind of 'aatma jnaana' (knowledge about the soul) he attains.

Once this knowledge is attained, that drives him to do actions for the betterment of the society without being attached to their fruit (result). That instantaneously makes him a 'yogi'.

pada vigrahaH:
चित्तस्य शुद्धये कर्म न तु वस्तु उपलब्धये
chittasya shuddhaye karma na tu vastu upalabdhaye
वस्तु सिद्धिः विचारेण न किञ्चित् कर्म कोटिभिः
vastu siddhiH vichaareNa na ki~nchit karma koTibhiH

March 3rd


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
आपदि मित्र परीक्षा शूरपरीक्षा च रणाङ्गणे
विनये वम्श परीक्षा च शील परीक्षा तु धनक्षये

Transliteration:
aapadi mitra parIkShaa shUraparIkShaa cha raNaa~ngaNe
vinaye vamsha parIkShaa cha shIla parIkShaa tu dhanakShaye

Meaning of the subhAShita:
A friend's testing ground is calamities, the brave are tested on the battlefield, the test of a family is in its humility and character is tested in times of poverty.

Commentary:
One might have gazillions of friends that they hang out with, he might have many more that would want to get to know him... But the true testing ground for the friendship is, in times of trouble. The true colors of all friends surface, the minute he is in a calamity. A person who stands by him through thick and thin, is his one true friend.

Talking about courage and even training in marshal arts doesn't make one brave. A person's valiance comes to light when he has to face real circumstances and fight a battle on a battle field. That is his real testing ground.

A family is not weighed as per their possession, wealth, friends and foes. The real test for a family is in its values. What kind of culture and moralities are imbibed in the children, speak volumes about the state of affairs in the family.

One can be of great character in pleasant times. When he has all the riches in the world, it is easy for one to follow the rules, do good to others, be cheerful, etc. But when the materialistic riches are gone, there is scarcity of resources and there is no fall back, then, the mettle of the person's character is put to test.

To keep one's moral grounds, under all circumstances, takes courage and character.

pada vigrahaH:
आपदि मित्र परीक्षा शूर परीक्षा च रण अङ्गणे
aapadi mitra parIkShaa shUra parIkShaa cha raNa a~ngaNe

विनये वम्श परीक्षा च शील परीक्षा तु धन क्षये
vinaye vamsha parIkShaa cha shIla parIkShaa tu dhana kShaye

March 2nd


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
हीयते हि मतिस्तात हीनैः सह समागमात्
समैश्च समतामेति विशिष्टैश्च विशिष्टताम्
- हितोपदेश

Transliteration:
hIyate hi matistaata hInaiH saha samaagamaat
samaishcha samataameti vishiShTaishcha vishiShTataam
- hitopadesha

Meaning of the subhAShita:
Oh protector (king)! In the company of the inferior, intellect attains inferiority; with equals, it attains evenness; with the distinguished, it excels!

(This is a shloka from hitopadesha where the king has sons who are dull witted. He is worried about their progress and the welfare of the country. The very learned viShNu sharma tells the king thus.)

Commentary:
As is the company, so does the intellect prosper.

Just as one rotten apple spoils the whole lot, the company of the forsaken makes one perform deeds that are forbidden. There isn't any growth in the positive direction. On the contrary, there is deterioration. At any cost, one should keep oneself away from such influences.

Being with equals does no harm to one's thinking prospects. They do not go down the growth pyramid. But they do not attain greater heights either. Their progress plateaus and knowledge stagnates. Although this is not as bad as the previous kind of association, it isn't very beneficial either.

Association of the distinguished and wise, makes even a dull witted person, wise. There is no down side to this kind of company. One does not fall off from his level of intellect nor does he stagnate. However small, there is growth for sure! One should always aim at a higher target and keep his eyes on a goal which makes him better with each passing day. This is possible only when the company kept is par excellence.

Keep good friends!

pada vigrahaH:
हीयते हि मतिः तात हीनैः सह समागमात्
samaiH cha samataam eti vishiShTaiH cha vishiShTataam

समैः च समताम् एति विशिष्टैः च विशिष्टताम्
samaiH cha samataam eti vishiShTaiH cha vishiShTataam

March 1st


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
प्रत्यहं प्रत्यवेक्षेत नरश्चरितमात्मनः
किं नु मे पशुभिस्तुल्यं किं नु सत्पुरुषैरिति
- सुभाषितरत्नभाण्डागार

Transliteration:
pratyahaM pratyavekSheta narashcharitamaatmanaH
kiM nu me pashubhistulyaM kiM nu satpuruShairiti
- subhaaShitaratnabhaaNDaagaara

Meaning of the subhAShita:
A person should examine his own deeds, everyday, thus - are mine comparable to animals or to that of the noble.

Commentary:
God made humans after making all other creatures. He made each creature a certain way and they behave like they are supposed to. He made humans, to act as, well..., humans! Does a lion leave its traits as a lion and behave as a rabbit? Does a flower forget to give fragrance and prick like a thorn? They are that way, because they are naturally born to be that way! God gave humans, a huge advantage over all others. He gave them the faculties of thought, wisdom and speech. He did not bestow these precious gifts on us for nothing. There were a set of expectations too, that accompanied these faculties. The power of thought should be put to constructive use for the benefit of others and betterment of oneself. Wisdom should be used to make wise choices and decisions which keep the peace and make the world a better place to live. Speech should be used to make someone happy and cheerful, rather than demean and insult others. As humans, we need to follow 'dharma' (righteousness). That is what sets us apart from the rest of the creatures.

Sometimes, humans use these faculties for deeds that stoop them even below animals. That is unacceptable! That too, is a part of human tendency - falling off the wagon of discipline. Then, it becomes our prime duty to examine and inquire into ourselves, on a daily basis - 'was I a good human being today or did I stoop down and behave like an animal?' This constant self-inquiry helps one to see his own follies and shortcomings. Only the recognition of the wrong step, can be the first step to correcting it!

Hence, this awareness and analysis of one's own deeds every single day, is very essential to becoming a better person.

pada vigrahaH:
प्रति अहं प्रति अवेक्षेत नरः चरितम् आत्मनः
prati ahaM prati avekSheta naraH charitam aatmanaH

किं नु मे पशुभिः तुल्यं किं नु सत्पुरुषैः इति
kiM nu me pashubhiH tulyaM kiM nu satpuruShaiH iti