Friday, 27 May 2011

Thirukkural in English - From chapters 021 to 030

021 Dread of evil deeds - From chapters 021 to 030

0201 The sinful will not dread; the great will dread
The wanton pride of sinful action.

0202 Evil begets evil and hence
Fear evil more than fire.

0203 The height of wisdom, it is said,
Is to abstain from injuring even the foe.

0204 Plot not thy neighbour's fall, even forgetfully;
Else, justice will plot the plotter's fall.

0205 Plead not poverty for doing ill,
Whereby you will become poorer still.

0206 Let him, who seeks to be free from suffering,
Not be a cause of suffering to others.

0207 Escape from other enemies is likely,
But not from the relentless pursuit of evil deeds.

0208 The consequences of evil deeds leave not
Like the persistent shadow under the feet.

0209 If you love yourself,
Refrain from causing ill of any degree.

0210 Know that no harm shall ever befall the one
Who never strays into evil.


022 Knowledge of obligation

0211 Duty is not for reward.
Does the world recompense the rain-cloud?

0212 All the wealth earned by toils
Is meant to serve those who deserve.

0213 Rare it is to find another good equal to benevolence,
Either here or in the heaven.

0214 He who knows what is right, lives;
The rest will be placed amongst the dead.

0215 The wealth of a wise philanthropist
Is a village pool ever full.

0216 When wealth comes to the generous,
It is like the village tree coming to fruit.

0217 When wealth comes to the large-hearted,
It is like an unfailing medicine tree.

0218 Those known for their duty will not slacken to help
Even during times of poverty.

0219 The poverty of a generous man is nothing but
His inability to exercise his generosity.

0220 If poverty comes of doing good,
One's self may be sold to do it.


023 Charity

0221 To give to the needy alone is charity;
All the rest is investment for a return.

0222 To receive is bad, even for good cause;
And to give is good even if there is no heaven.

0223 The mark of the well-born is to give
Without uttering the wretched excuse, "I have nothing."

0224 To be begged is agonizing, till you give
And see the smiling face of the beggar.

0225 Strong is the strength of enduring hunger,
But stronger still is the strength of relieving it.

0226 Wiping out the hunger of the have-nots,
Is the treasury the haves have deposited their wealth.

0227 That dreaded disease called hunger touches not the one
Who shares his food by habit.

0228 Unaware of the joys of giving,
The hard-hearted waste their wealth hoarding it.

0229 To eat alone what one has hoarded
Is worse than begging.

0230 Nothing is worse than death; but even death is sweet
If one can't help the poor.

024 Fame

0231 No greater income in life than to live with fame
That comes out of charity.

0232 The fame of men who give to those in need
Will live for ever in the words of all.

0233 Nothing imperishable lasts long in this world
Than glorious fame beyond compare.

0234 Even celestials will cease praising saints
When you gain world-wide lasting fame.

0235 None other than the wise can have
Some gain in loss and fame in death.

0236 Be born, if you must, for fame;
Or else better not to be born at all.

0237 Why blame those who blame the shame of those
Who cannot live in fame?

0238 The whole world will blame, they say,
If you fail to earn that renown called fame.

0239 The land that bears inglorious bodies
Will shrink in its glory of yield.

0240 Life without blame alone blooms.
The one without fame fades.

025 Kindness

0241 The wealth of wealth is the wealth of grace.
Material wealth, even the mean possess.

0242 Obtain grace by seeking the path of goodness.
That is the aid cited in all paths.

0243 Those who are kind-hearted enter not
Into the terrible world of darkness.

0244 Those who protect other life with kindness
Need not fear for their own lives.

0245 This great earth and its biosphere declare
That sorrows are not for the merciful.

0246 Those who do ill forsaking kindness, they say,
Must be oblivious of forsaking morality.

0247 This world is not for the poor,
Nor the next for the unkind.

0248 The poor may be rich one day,
But the graceless will always lack grace.

0249 The good acts of the graceless, if examined,
Resemble the muddled head seeing Truth.

0250 When you threaten one weaker than yourself,
Think of yourself before a bully.

026 Shunning meat

0251 How can one command grace
Who eats the flesh of others to swell his own flesh?

0252 No scope for wealth with a spendthrift.
So too compassion with a meat eater.

0253 No mercy in the hearts of those armed to kill
And those who feast on flesh.

0254 What is grace? It is not killing; To kill, disgrace.
And senseless to eat that meat.

0255 Abstain from meat to save life.
The clenched jaws of hell hold those who don't.

0256 The world may say: "Meat we eat, but don't kill'.
But no one will sell if there is none to buy.

0257 Abstain from eating flesh realizing it
As the wound of another

0258 Those visionaries freed of ignorance
Will not feed on a flesh freed of its life.

0259 Better than a thousand burnt offerings
Is one life un-killed, un-eaten.

0260 All living things will fold their hands
And bow to one who refuses to kill or eat meat.

027 Penance

0261 The characteristic of penance lies in
Enduring hardships and harming no life.

0262 Penance is for the capable.
It is futile for others to attempt it.

0263 Is it to support those who do penance
That others have forgotten it?

0264 In penance lies the power
To save friends and foil foes.

0265 Men do penance in this world
For the fulfillment of their desired desires.

0266 While the austere are engaged in their duties,
Others toil in vain ensnared by desire.

0267 As the intense fire makes gold shine,
So does the burning austerities relieve pain.

0268 All souls will worship him who, losing his ego,
Gets control of his own soul.

0269 Those who have achieved the strength of penance
Could defeat even the Lord of Death.

0270 The have-nots outnumber the haves
Because penance is not for the many.

028 Imposture

0271 The five elements will laugh within
At a hypocrite's lying conduct.

0272 What use is a sky-high pose to one
Who knowingly does wrong?

0273 A weakling posing a giant form
Is an ox grazing in a tiger's skin.

0274 A posing ascetic who sins secretly
Is like a fowler hiding in bush to trap birds.

0275 The deceitful acts of those claiming dispassion
Will make them exclaim in pain, "Alas! Alas!"

0276 None so cruel as the posing ascetic
Who lives by deceit without renouncing by heart.

0277 Like the kunri - red to view but black on top
Are many, ochre-robed but black within.

0278 Many spotted minds bathe in holy streams
And lead a double life.

0279 The lute is bent, the arrow straight:
Judge men not by their looks but acts.

0280 No need of tonsure or long hair,
If one avoids what the world condemns.

029 Avoiding fraud

0281 Let him guard against every thought of fraud
If he wishes not to be scorned.

0282 Even to harbour in mind
The idea of defrauding another's wealth is sin.

0283 Stolen wealth may seem to swell
But in the end will burst.

0284 The excessive love for fraudulent gain
Leads to everlasting pain.

0285 Love and grace are alien virtues to one
Who plots for innocent's wealth.

0286 Those who love stealing
Can never be content with what they have.

0287 Those gifted with the faculty of contentment
Never have that shady skill called fraud.

0288 As virtue in the hearts of the righteous,
Deceit dwells in the hearts of thieves.

0289 Discontented men who know nothing but fraud
Perish as and when they corrupt.

0290 Even life abandons him who defrauds others,
But heaven never forsakes the honest.

030 Truthfulness

0291 What is truthfulness? It is nothing but utterance
Wholly devoid of ill.

0292 Even a lie would take the place of truth,
If it brings blameless benefit.

0293 Lie not against your conscience,
Lest your own conscience burn you.

0294 He who lives truly in his own heart,
Truly lives in the hearts of all people.

0295 Truthfulness in thought and word
Outweighs penance and charity.

0296 Nothing but the fame of truthfulness
Can give all other virtues effortlessly.

0297 If one speaks the truth and only truth,
He need not seek other virtues.

0298 Water ensures external purity
And truthfulness shows the internal.

0299 Not all lights cause illumination; For the wise,
Only the light of truth is illuminant.

0300 Amidst all that we have seen as real,
There is nothing as good as truthfulness.

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