Thirukural of Tiruvalluvar

Thirukural of Tiruvalluvar

The Thirukural is a 2 200-year-old South Indian Tamil - Dravidian classic on ethical living. Not unaware that there are advocates of later dates (from ca 200 BCE down to ca 400 CE) we honor here the prevalent Tamil tradition. It was written by Tamil sage Tiruvalluvar.

Thiru means “holy” or “sacred,” and kural describes a brief verse or literary couplet. This poetic masterpiece is one of the most revered Holy Scriptures in South India. On most part it deals with questions of ethical living, how to deal with daily situations, things that are good to note for a householder and ascetic.

Hinduism’s four legitimate goals of human life are dharma, artha , kama and moksha, known in English as virtue, wealth, love and liberation. In the Thirukural, Saint Tiruvalluvar spoke in depth on the first three. Under the heading of virtue, he discusses the ways of the householder and the monk, focusing on good conduct and its opposite. In the chapters on wealth he speaks of business, government, politics and the building of the nation.

Valluvar also discussed the fourth and final goal of life, liberation from rebirth, especially in the chapters on the way of the renunciate. As the four Vedas outline the path to salvation by delineation of the destination, the Thirukural carefully explains how to live while treading the path to that ultimate goal. Along with the Thirumantiram (composed by the great Tamil mystic, Rishi Tirumular, during the same period) which explains the means to Self-Realization, spiritual yogas and liberation, these two classics form a complete whole, covering dharma, artha, kama and moksha.

Text translated in English from Tamil by Kaviyogi Maharishi Shuddhananda Bharatiar.

1. The Praise of God
1.1 Introduction
1.1.1 The Praise of God

'A' leads letters; the Ancient Lord
Leads and lords the entire world. |1

That lore is vain which does not fall
At His good feet who knoweth all. |2

Long they live on earth who gain
The feet of God in florid brain. |3

Who hold His feet who likes nor loathes
Are free from woes of human births. |4

God's praise who tell, are free from right
And wrong, the twins of dreaming night. |5

They prosper long who walk His way
Who has the senses signed away. |6

His feet, whose likeness none can find,
Alone can ease the anxious mind. |7

Who swims the sea of vice is he
Who clasps the feet of Virtue's sea. |8

Like senses stale that head is vain
Which bows not to Eight-Virtued Divine. |9

The sea of births they alone swim
Who clench His feet and cleave to Him. |10

1.1.2. The Blessing of Rain

The genial rain ambrosia call:
The world but lasts while rain shall fall. |11

The rain begets the food we eat
And forms a food and drink concrete. |12

Let clouds their visits stay, and dearth
Distresses all the sea-girt earth. |13

Unless the fruitful shower descend,
The ploughman's sacred toil must end. |14

Destruction it may sometimes pour
But only rain can life restore. |15

No grassy blade its head will rear,
If from the cloud no drop appear |16

The ocean's wealth will waste away,
Except the cloud its stores repay. |17

The earth, beneath a barren sky,
Would offerings for the gods deny. |18

Were heaven above to fail below
Nor alms nor penance earth would show. |19

Water is life that comes from rain
Sans rain our duties go in vain. |20

1.1.3. The Merit of Ascetics

No merit can be held so high
As theirs who sense and self deny. |21

To con ascetic glory here
Is to count the dead upon the sphere. |22

No lustre can with theirs compare
Who know the right and virtue wear. |23

With hook of firmness to restrain
The senses five, is heaven to gain. |24

Indra himself has cause to say
How great the power ascetics' sway. |25

The small the paths of ease pursue
The great achieve things rare to do. |26

They gain the world, who grasp and tell
Of taste, sight, hearing, touch and smell. |27

Full- worded men by what they say,
Their greatness to the world display. |28

Their wrath, who've climb'd the mount of good,
Though transient, cannot be withstood. |29

With gentle mercy towards all,
The sage fulfils the virtue’s call. |30

1.1.4 The Power of Virtue

From virtue weal and wealth outflow;
What greater good can mankind know? |31

Virtue enhances joy and gain;
Forsaking it is fall and pain. |32

Perform good deeds as much you can
Always and everywhere, o man! |33

In spotless mind virtue is found
And not in show and swelling sound. |34

Four ills eschew and virtue reach,
Lust, anger, envy, evil-speech. |35

Do good enow; defer it not
A deathless aid in death if sought. |36

Litter-bearer and rider say
Without a word, the fortune's way. |37

Like stones that block rebirth and pain
Are doing good and good again. |38

Weal flows only from virtue done
The rest is rue and renown gone. |39

Worthy act is virtue done
Vice is what we ought to shun. |40

1.2. DOMESTIC VIRTUE
1.2.1. Married Life

The ideal householder is he
Who aids the natural orders there. |41

His help the monk and retired share,
And celibate students are his care. |42

By dutiful householder's aid
God, manes, kin, self and guests are served. |43

Sin he shuns and food he shares
His home is bright and brighter fares. |44

In grace and gain the home excels,
Where love with virtue sweetly dwells. |45

Who turns from righteous family
To be a monk, what profits he? |46

Of all who strive for bliss, the great
Is he who leads the married state. |47

Straight in virtue, right in living
Make men brighter than monks praying. |48

Home- life and virtue, are the same;
Which spotless monkhood too can claim. |49

He is a man of divine worth
Who lives in ideal home on earth. |50

1.2.2 The Worth of a Wife

A good housewife befits the house,
Spending with thrift the mate's resource. |51

Bright is home when wife is chaste.
If not all greatness is but waste. |52

What is rare when wife is good.
What can be there when she is bad? |53

What greater fortune is for men
Than a constant chaste woman? |54

Her spouse before God who adores,
Is like rain that at request pours. |55

The good wife guards herself from blame,
She tends her spouse and brings him fame. |56

Of what avail are watch and ward?
Their purity is women's guard. |57

Women who win their husbands' heart
Shall flourish where the gods resort. |58

A cuckold has not the lion-like gait
Before his detractors aright. |59

An honest wife is home's delight
And children good are jewels abright. |60

1.2.3. The Wealth of Children

The world no higher bliss bestows
Than children virtuous and wise. |61

No evil comes and no blemish;
Noble sons bring all we wish. |62

Children are one's wealth indeed
Their wealth is measured by their deed. |63

The food is more than nectar sweet
In which one's children hands insert. |64

Children's touch delights the body
Sweet to ears are their words lovely. |65

The flute and lute are sweet they say
Deaf to baby's babble's lay! |66

A father's duty to his son is
To seat him in front of the wise. |67

With joy the hearts of parents swell
To see their children themselves excel. |68

The mother, hearing her son's merit
Delights more than when she begot. |69

The son to sire this word is debt
"What penance such a son begot!" |70

1.2.4. Loving-Kindness

What bolt can bar true love in fact
The tricking tears reveal the heart. |71

To selves belong the loveless ones;
To oth'rs the loving e'en to bones. |72

Soul is encased in frame of bone
To taste the life of love alone. |73

Love yields aspiration and thence
Friendship springs up in excellence. |74

The crowning joy of home life flows
From peaceful psychic love always. |75

"Love is virtue's friend" say know- nots
It helps us against evil plots. |76

Justice burns the loveless form
Like solar blaze the boneless worm. |77

Life bereft of love is gloom
Can sapless tree in desert bloom? |78

Love is the heart which limbs must move,
Or vain the outer parts will prove. |79

The seat of life is love alone;
Or beings are but skin and bone! |80

1.2.5. Hospitality

Men set up home, toil and earn
To tend the guests and do good turn. |81

To keep out guests cannot be good
Albeit you eat nector-like food. |82

Who tends his guests day in and out
His life in want never wears out. |83

The goddess of wealth will gladly rest
Where smiles welcome the worthy guest. |84

Should his field be sown who first
Feeds the guests and eats the rest? |85

Who tends a guest and looks for next
Is a welcome guest in heaven's feast. |86

Worth of the guest of quality
Is worth of hospitality. |87

Who loathe guest-service one day cry:
"We toil and store; but life is dry". |88

The man of wealth is poor indeed
Whose folly fails the guest to feed. |89

Anicham smelt withers: like that
A wry- faced look withers the guest. |90

1.2.6. Sweet Words

The words of Seers are lovely sweet
Merciful and free from deceit. |91

Sweet words from smiling lips dispense
More joys than heart's beneficence. |92

Calm face, sweet look, kind words from heart
Such is the gracious virtue's part. |93

Whose loving words delight each one
The woe of want from them is gone. |94

To be humble and sweet words speak
No other jewel do wise men seek. |95

His sins vanish, his virtues grow
Whose fruitful words with sweetness flow. |96

The fruitful courteous kindly words
Lead to goodness and graceful deeds. |97

Kind words free from meanness delight
This life on earth and life the next. |98

Who sees the sweets of sweetness here
To use harsh words how can he dare? |99

Leaving ripe fruits the raw he eats
Who speaks harsh words when sweet word suits. |100

1.2.7. Gratitude

Unhelped in turn good help given
Exceeds in worth earth and heaven. |101

A help rendered in hour of need
Though small is greater than the world. |102

Help rendered without weighing fruits
Outweighs the sea in grand effects. |103

Help given though millet- small
Knowers count its good palm- tree tall. |104

A help is not the help's measure
It is gainer's worth and pleasure. |105

Forget not friendship of the pure
Forsake not timely helpers sure. |106

Through sevenfold births, in memory fares
The willing friend who wiped one's tears. |107

To forget good turns is not good
Good it is over wrong not to brood. |108

Let deadly harms be forgotten
While remembering one good- turn. |109

The virtue-killer may be saved
Not benefit-killer who is damned. |110

1.2.8. Equity

Equity is supreme virtue
It is to give each man his due. |111

Wealth of the man of equity
Grows and lasts to posterity. |112

Though profitable, turn away
From unjust gains without delay. |113

The worthy and the unworthy
Are seen in their posterity. |114

Loss and gain by cause arise;
Equal mind adorns the wise. |115

Of perdition let him be sure
Who leaves justice to sinful lure. |116

The just reduced to poverty
Is not held down by equity. |117

Like balance holding equal scales
A well poised mind is jewel of the wise. |118

Justice is upright, unbending
And free from crooked word-twisting. |119

A trader's trade prospers fairly
When his dealings are neighbourly. |120

1.2.9 Self Control

Self- rule leads to realms of gods
Indulgence leads to gloomy hades. |121

No gains with self- control measure
Guard with care this great treasure. |122

Knowing wisdom who lives controlled
Name and fame seek him untold. |123

Firmly fixed in self serene
The sage looks grander than mountain. |124

Humility is good for all
To the rich it adds a wealth special. |125

Who senses five like tortoise hold
Their joy prolongs to births sevenfold. |126

Rein the tongue if nothing else
Or slips of tongue bring all the woes. |127

Even a single evil word
Will turn all good results to bad. |128

The fire- burnt wounds do find a cure
Tongue-burnt wound rests a running sore. |129

Virtue seeks and peeps to see
Self- controlled savant anger free. |130

1.2.10 Good Decorum

Decorum does one dignity
More than life guard its purity. |131

Virtues of conduct all excel;
The soul aid should be guarded well. |132

Good conduct shows good family
Low manners mark anomaly. |133

Readers recall forgotten lore,
But conduct lost returns no more. |134

The envious prosper but ill
The ill-behaved sinks lower still. |135

The firm from virtue falter not
They know the ills of evil thought. |136

Conduct good ennobles man,
Bad conduct entails disgrace mean. |137

Good conduct sows seeds of blessings
Bad conduct endless evil brings. |138

Foul words will never fall from lips
Of righteous men even by slips. |139

Though read much they are ignorant
Whose life is not world-accordant. |140

1.2.11 Against Coveting Another's Wife

Who know the wealth and virtue's way
After other's wife do not stray. |141

He is the worst law breaking boor
Who haunts around his neighbour's door. |142

The vile are dead who evil aim
And put faithful friends' wives to shame. |143

Their boasted greatness means nothing
When to another's wife they cling. |144

Who trifles with another's wife
His guilty stain will last for life. |145

Hatred, sin, fear, and shame-these four
Stain adulterers ever more. |146

He is the righteous householder
His neighbour's wife who covets never. |147

They lead a high-souled manly life
The pure who eye not another's wife. |148

Good in storm bound earth is with those
Who clasp not arms of another's spouse. |149

Sinners breaking virtue's behest
Lust not for another's wife at least. |150

1.2.12 Forgiveness

As earth bears up with diggers too
To bear revilers is prime virtue. |151

Forgive insults is a good habit
Better it is to forget it. |152

Neglect the guest is dearth of dearth
To bear with fools is strength of strength. |153

Practice of patient quality
Retains intact integrity. |154

Vengeance is not in esteem held
Patience is praised as hidden gold. |155

Revenge accords but one day's joy
Patience carries its praise for aye. |156

Though others cause you wanton pain
Grieve not; from unjust harm refrain. |157

By noble forbearance vanquish
The proud that have caused you anguish. |158

More than ascetics they are pure
Who bitter tongues meekly endure. |159

Who fast are great to do penance
Greater are they who bear offence. |160

1.2.13 Avoid Envy

Deem your heart as virtuous
When your nature is not jealous. |161

No excellence excels the one
That by nature envies none. |162

Who envies others' good fortune
Can't prosper in virtue of his own. |163

The wise through envy don't others wrong
Knowing that woes from evils throng. |164

Man shall be wrecked by envy's whim
Even if enemies spare him. |165

Who envies gifts shall suffer ruin
Without food and clothes with his kin. |166

Fortune deserts the envious
Leaving misfortune omnious. |167

Caitiff envy despoils wealth
And drags one into evil path. |168

Why is envy rich, goodmen poor
People with surprise think over. |169

The envious prosper never
The envyless prosper ever. |170

1.2.14 Against Covetousness

Who covets others' honest wealth
That greed ruins his house forthwith. |171

Who shrink with shame from sin, refrain
From coveting which brings ruin. |172

For spiritual bliss who long
For fleeting joy commit no wrong. |173

The truth-knowers of sense-control
Though in want covet not at all. |174

What is one's subtle wisdom worth
If it deals ill with all on earth. |175

Who seeks for grace on righteous path
Suffers by evil covetous wealth. |176

Shun the fruit of covetousness
All its yield is inglorious. |177

The mark of lasting wealth is shown
By not coveting others' own. |178

Fortune seeks the just and wise
Who are free from coveting vice. |179

Desireless, greatness conquers all;
Coveting misers ruined fall |180

1.2.15 Against Slander

Though a man from virtue strays,
To keep from slander brings him praise. |181

Who bite behind, and before smile
Are worse than open traitors vile. |182

Virtue thinks it better to die,
Than live to backbite and to lie. |183

Though harsh you speak in one's presence
Abuse is worse in his absence. |184

Who turns to slander makes it plain
His praise of virtue is in vain. |185

His failings will be found and shown,
Who makes another's failings known. |186

By pleasing words who make not friends
Sever their hearts by hostile trends. |187

What will they not to strangers do
Who bring their friends' defects to view? |188

The world in mercy bears his load
Who rants behind words untoward. |189

No harm would fall to any man
If each his own defect could scan. |190

1.2.16 Against Vain Speaking

With silly words who insults all
Is held in contempt as banal. |191

Vain talk before many is worse
Than doing to friends deeds adverse. |192

The babbler's hasty lips proclaim
That "good-for-nothing" is his name. |193

Vain words before an assembly
Will make all gains and goodness flee. |194

Glory and grace will go away
When savants silly nonsense say. |195

Call him a human chaff who prides
Himself in weightless idle words. |196

Let not men of worth vainly quack
Even if they would roughly speak. |197

The wise who weigh the worth refrain
From words that have no grain and brain. |198

The wise of spotless self-vision
Slip not to silly words -mention. |199

To purpose speak the fruitful word
And never indulge in useless load. |200

1.2.17 Fear of Sin

Sinners fear not the pride of sin.
The worthy dread the ill within. |201

Since evil begets evil dire
Fear ye evil more than fire. |202

The wisest of the wise are those
Who injure not even their foes. |203

His ruin virtue plots who plans
The ruin of another man's. |204

Who makes poverty plea for ill
Shall reduce himself poorer still. |205

From wounding others let him refrain
Who would from harm himself remain. |206

Men may escape other foes and live
But sin its deadly blow will give. |207

Ruin follows who evil do
As shadow follows as they go. |208

Let none who loves himself at all
Think of evil however small. |209

He is secure, know ye, from ills
Who slips not right path to do evils. |210

1.2.18 Duty to Society

Duty demands nothing in turn;
How can the world recompense rain? |211

All the wealth that toils give
Is meant to serve those who deserve. |212

In heav'n and earth 'tis hard to find
A greater good than being kind. |213

He lives who knows befitting act
Others are deemed as dead in fact. |214

The wealth that wise and kind do make
Is like water that fills a lake. |215

Who plenty gets and plenty gives
Is like town-tree teeming with fruits. |216

The wealth of a wide-hearted soul
Is a herbal tree that healeth all. |217

Though seers may fall on evil days
Their sense of duty never strays. |218

The good man's poverty and grief
Is want of means to give relief. |219

By good if ruin comes across
Sell yourself to save that loss. |220

1.2.19 Charity

To give the poor is charity
The rest is loan and vanity. |221

To beg is bad e'en from the good
To give is good, were heaven forbid. |222

No pleading, "I am nothing worth,"
But giving marks a noble birth. |223

The cry for alms is painful sight
Until the giver sees him bright. |224

Higher's power which hunger cures
Than that of penance which endures. |225

Drive from the poor their gnawing pains
If room you seek to store your gains. |226

Who shares his food with those who need
Hunger shall not harm his creed. |227

The joy of give and take they lose
Hard- hearted rich whose hoarding fails. |228

Worse than begging is that boarding
Alone what one's greed is hoarding. |229

Nothing is more painful than death
Yet more is pain of giftless dearth. |230

1 .2 .20 Renown

They gather fame who freely give
The greatest gain for all that live. |231

The glory of the alms-giver
Is praised aloud as popular. |232

Nothing else lasts on earth for e'er
Saving high fame of the giver! |233

From hailing gods heavens will cease
To hail the men of lasting praise |234

Fame in fall and life in death
Are rare but for the soulful worth. |235

Be born with fame if birth you want
If not of birth you must not vaunt. |236

Why grieve at those who blame the shame
Of those who cannot live in fame? |237

To men on earth it is a shame
Not to beget the child of fame. |238

The land will shrink in yield if men
O'erburden it without renown. |239

They live who live without blemish
The blameful ones do not flourish. |240

1.3 ASCETIC VIRTUE

1.3 .1 Compassion

The wealth of wealth is wealth of grace
Earthly wealth e'en the basest has. |241

Seek by sound ways good compassion;
All faiths mark that for- salvation. |242

The hearts of mercy shall not go
Into dark worlds of gruesome woe. |243

His soul is free from dread of sins
Whose mercy serveth all beings. |244

The wide wind-fed world witness bears:
Men of mercy meet not sorrows. |245

Who grace forsake and graceless act
The former loss and woes forget. |246

This world is not for weathless ones
That world is not for graceless swines. |247

The wealthless may prosper one day;
The graceless never bloom again. |248

Like Truth twisted by confused mind
Wisdom is vain in hearts unkind. |249

Think how you feel before the strong
When to the feeble you do wrong. |250

1. 3. 2 Abstinence from Flesh

What graciousness can one command
who feeds his flesh by flesh gourmand. |251

The thriftless have no property
And flesh-eaters have no pity. |252

Who wields a steel is steel-hearted
Who tastes body is hard-hearted. |253

If merciless it is to kill,
To kill and eat is disgraceful. |254

Off with flesh; a life you save
The eater hell's mouth shall not waive! |255

None would kill and sell the flesh
For eating it if they don't wish. |256

From eating flesh men must abstain
If they but feel the being's pain. |257

Whose mind from illusion is freed
Refuse on lifeless flesh to feed. |258

Not to-kill-and-eat, truly
Excels thousand pourings of ghee! |259

All lives shall lift their palms to him
Who eats not flesh nor kills with whim. |260

1.3.3 Penance

Pains endure; pain not beings
This is the type of true penance. |261

Penance is fit for penitents
Not for him who in vain pretends. |262

Is it to true penitent's aid,
That others austere path avoid? |263

In penance lies the power to save
The friends and foil the foe and knave. |264

What they wish as they wish is won
Here hence by men penance is done. |265

Who do penance achieve their aim
Others desire- rid themselves harm. |266

Pure and bright gets the gold in fire;
and so the life by pain austere. |267

He worship wins from every soul
Who Master is by soul control. |268

They can even defy death
Who get by penance godly strength. |269

Many are poor and few are rich
For they care not for penance much. |270

1.3.4 Imposture

Elements five of feigned life
Of a sly hypocrite within laugh. |271

Of what avail are sky-high shows
When guild the conscience gnaws and knows. |272

Vaunting sainthood while week within
Seems a grazer with tiger skin. |273

Sinning in saintly show is like
Fowlers in ambush birds to strike. |274

Who false within but freedom feign
Shall moan "What have we done" with pain. |275

Vilest is he who seems a saint
Cheating the world without restraint. |276

Berry-red is his outward view,
Black like its nose his inward hue. |277

Filthy in mind some bathe in streams
Hiding sins in showy extremes. |278

Know men by acts and not by forms
Straight arrow kills, bent lute but charms. |279

No balding nor tangling the hair!
Abstain from condemned acts with care. |280

1.3.5 Absence of Fraud

Let him who would reproachless be
From all frauds guard his conscience free. |281

"We will by fraud win other's wealth"
Even this thought is sin and stealth. |282

The gain by fraud may overflow
But swift to ruin it shall go. |283

The fruit that fraud and greed obtain
Shall end in endless grief and pain. |284

Love and Grace are not their worth
Who watch to waylay dozer's wealth. |285

They cannot walk in measured bounds
who crave and have covetous ends. |286

Men of measured wisdom shun
Black art of fraud and what it won. |287

Virtue abides in righteous hearts
Into minds of frauds deceit darts. |288

They perish in their perfidy
Who know nothing but pilfery. |289

Even the body rejects thieves;
The honest men, heaven receives. |290

1.3.6 Veracity

If "What is truth"? the question be,
It is to speak out evil-free. |291

E'en falsehood may for truth suffice,
When good it brings removing vice. |292

Let not a man knowingly lie;
Conscience will scorch and make him sigh. |293

He lives in loving hearts of all
Who serves the Truth serene in soul. |294

To speak the truth from heart sincere
Is more than giving and living austere |295

Not to lie brings all the praise
All virtues from Truth arise. |296

Lie not lie not. Naught else you need
All virtues are in Truth indeed. |297

Water makes you pure outward
Truth renders you pure inward. |298

All lights are not lights for the wise;
Truth light is light bright like Sun-light. |299

Of all the things we here have seen
Nothing surpasses Truth serene! |300

1.3.7 Restraining Anger

Anger against the weak is wrong
It is futile against the strong. |301

Vain is wrath against men of force
Against the meek it is still worse. |302

Off with wrath with any one.
It is the source of sin and pain. |303

Is there a foe like harmful ire
Which kills the smile and joyful cheer? |304

Thyself to save, from wrath away!
If not thyself the wrath will slay. |305

Friend-killer is the fatal rage
It burns the helpful kinship-barge. |306

The wrath-lover to doom is bound
Like failless- hand that strikes the ground. |307

Save thy soul from burning ire
Though tortured like the touch of fire. |308

Wishes he gains as he wishes
If man refrains from rage vicious! |309

Dead are they who are anger-fed
Saints are they from whom wrath has fled. |310

1.3.8 Non Violence

The pure by faith mean pain to none
Though princely wealth by that is won. |311

The spotless hearts seek not revenge
Though Malice does the worst in rage. |312

Revenging even causeless hate
Bad-blood breeds and baneful heat. |313

Doing good-turns, put them to shame
Thus chide the evil who do harm. |314

What does a man from wisdom gain
If he pines not at other's pain? |315

What you feel as pain to yourself
Do it not to the other-self. |316

Any, anywhere injure not
At any time even in thought. |317

How can he injure other souls
Who in his life injury feels. |318

Harm others in the forenoon
Harm seeks thee in afternoon. |319

No harm is done by peace -lovers
For pains rebound on pain-givers. |320

1.3.9 Non-Killing

What is Virtue? 'Tis not to kill
For killing causes every ill. |321

Share the food and serve all lives
This is the law of all the laws. |322

Not to kill is unique good
The next, not to utter falsehood. |323

What way is good? That we can say
The way away from heat to slay. |324

Of saints who renounce birth-fearing
The head is he who dreads killing. |325

Life- eating - Death shall spare the breath
Of him who no life puts to death. |326

Kill not life that others cherish
Even when your life must perish. |327

The gain of slaughter is a vice
Though deemed good in sacrifice. |328

Those who live by slaying are
Eaters of carrion bizarre! |329

The loathsome poor sickly and sore
Are killers stained by blood before. |330

1.3.10 Instability

The worst of follies it is told
The fleeting as lasting to hold. |331

Like a drama-crowd wealth gathers
Like passing show its pride too goes. |332

Wealth wanes away; but when it comes
Take care to do enduring things. |333

The showy day is but a saw
Your life, know that, to file and gnaw. |334

Ere tongue benumbs and hiccough comes
Rise up to do good deeds betimes. |335

This world possesses the greatness
That one who yesterday was is not today. |336

Man knows not his next moment
On crores of things he is intent. |337

The soul from body any day
Like bird from egg- shell flies away. |338

Death is like a slumber deep
And birth like waking from that sleep. |339

The life berthed in this body shows
A fixed home it never knows. |340

1.3.11 Renunciation

From what from what a man is free
From that, from that his torments flee. |341

Give up all to gain the True
And endless joys shall hence seek you. |342

Curb the senses five and renounce
The carving desires all at once. |343

To have nothing is law of vows
Having the least deludes and snares. |344

Why add to bonds while this body
Is too much for saints to be birth-free. |345

Who curbs the pride of I and mine
Gets a world rare for gods to gain. |346

Grief clings on and on to those
Who cling to bonds without release. |347

Who renounce all are free from care
Others suffer delusive snare. |348

Bondage cut off, rebirth is off
The world then seems instable stuff. |349

Bind Thyself to the unbound one
That binding breaks all bonds anon. |350

1.3.12 Truth-Consciousness

That error entails ignoble birth
Which deems vain things as things of worth. |351

Men of spotless pure insight
Enjoy delight devoid of night. |352

To doubtless minds whose heart is clear
More than earth heaven is near. |353

Knowledge of five senses is vain
Without knowing the Truth within. |354

Knowledge is truth of things to find
In every case of every kind. |355

Who learn and here the Truth discern
Enter the path of non-return. |356

One-minded sage sees inner-truth
He is free from thoughts of rebirth. |357

It is knowledge to know Self-Truth
And remove the folly of birth. |358

Know the Refuge; off with bondage
Be free from ills of thraldom, O sage. |359

Woes expire when lust, wrath, folly
Expire even to name, fully. |360