April 8th


Sanskrit Pearl of the day:
आहारनिद्राभयमैथुनञ्च समानमेतत् पशुभिर्नराणाम्
धर्मोहि तेषामधिको विशेषो धर्मेण हिनाः पशुभिस्समानाः
- चाणक्य नीति

Transliteration:
aahaaranidraabhayamaithuna~ncha samaanametat pashubhirnaraaNaam
dharmohi teShaamadhiko visheSho dharmeNa hinaaH pashubhissamaanaaH
- chaaNakya nIti

Meaning of the subhAShita:
Food, sleep, fear and mating - these are equal in animals and humans. Virtue (dharma) alone is distinctive in them. (Those) devoid of dharma are equal to animals.

Commentary:
Eating when hungry, sleeping according to their biological clocks, fear when threatened, copulating for procreating - these traits are common to both animals and humans. So, how are we distinguishing ourselves? Just being robed and talking multiple languages do not qualify one to claim as species of a higher order! What sets humans apart is their ability to follow a path of virtue (dharma). Their intellect, paves way for them to think through the multitudes of paths they can take. A true human sticks to the one that qualifies as dharma. That ability of decision making in coherence of dharma, are what makes him human. Else, he would be showing the same traits as the rest of the beings, which are called animals. Hence, if one doesn't follow the path of virtue, he is as good as an animal!

The one faculty that sets us apart from other beings is dharma. Do not forgo that for any reason.

Be human, follow dharma.

pada vigrahaH:
आहार निद्रा भय मैथुनं च समानम् एतत् पशुभिः नराणाम्
aahaara nidraa bhaya maithunaM cha samaanam etat pashubhiH naraaNaam

धर्मः हि तेषाम् अधिकः विशेषः धर्मेण हिनाः पशुभिः समानाः
dharmaH hi teShaam adhikaH visheShaH dharmeNa hinaaH pashubhiH samaanaaH

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