தமிழ்த் தேசியம்

"To us all towns are one, all men our kin.
Life's good comes not from others' gift, nor ill
Man's pains and pains' relief are from within.
Thus have we seen in visions of the wise !."

- Tamil Poem in Purananuru, circa 500 B.C 

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Home > Tamil Language & Literature > ThirukuralThirukural - English Translation: Himalayan Academy - Introduction > Index  > Couplets 1-100 > Couplets 101-200 > Couplets 201-400 > Couplets 401 - 600 > Couplets 601-810 > Couplets 811-950  > Couplets 951-1080

The Thiru Kural
Couplets 1 - 100

In Praise of God | The Importance of Rain | Greatness of Renunciates | Assertion of Virtue's Power | Family Life | The Good Wife | The Blessing of Children | Possessing Love | Hospitality | Speaking Pleasant Words


In Praise of God

Verse 1 "A" is the first and source of all the letters. Even so is God Primordial the first and source of all the world.

Verse 2 What has learning profited a man, if it has not led him To worship the Good Feet of Him who is pure knowledge itself?

Verse 3 The Supreme dwells within the lotus of the heart. Those who reach His Splendid Feet dwell endearingly within unearthly realms.

Verse 4 Draw near the Feet of Him who is free of desire and aversion. And live forever free of suffering.

Verse 5 Good and bad, delusion's dual deeds, do not disturb Those who delight in praising the immutable, worshipful One.

Verse 6 A long and joyous life rewards those is theirs who remain firmly On the faultless path of Him who controls the five senses.

Verse 7 They alone dispel the mind's distress Who take refuge at the Feet of the Incomparable One.

Verse 8 They alone can cross life's other oceans who take refuge at the Feet of the Gracious One, Himself an ocean of virtue.

Verse 9 The head which cannot bow before the Feet of the Possessor Of eight infinite powers resembles eyes which cannot see.

Verse 10 The immense boundless ocean of births can be crossed, but not Without intimate union with Infinity's Holy Feet.


The Importance of Rain

Verse 11 It is the unfailing fall of rain that sustains the world. Therefore, look upon rain as the nectar of life.

Verse 12 Rain produces man's wholesome food; And rain itself forms part of his food besides.

Verse 13 Though oceanic waters surround it, the world will be deluged By hunger's hardships if the billowing clouds betray us.

Verse 14 When clouds withhold their watery wealth, Farmers cease to pull their ploughs.

Verse 15 It is rain that ruins, and it is rain again That raises up those it has ruined.

Verse 16 Unless raindrops fall from the sky, Not even green grass will be seen rising from the earth.

Verse 17 The nature of oceans, though vast, would diminish, If clouds ceased to take up water and give back rain's gifts.

Verse 18 Should the heavens dry up, worship here of the heavenly ones In festivals and daily rites would wither.

Verse 19 Unless the heavens grant their gifts, neither the giver's generosity Nor the ascetic's aloofness will grace this wide world.

Verse 20 No life on earth can exist without water, And the ceaseless flow of that water cannot exist without rain.


Greatness of Renunciates

Verse 21 The scriptures exalt above every other good The greatness of virtuous renunciates.

Verse 22 Attempting to speak of the renunciate's magnitude Is akin to measuring the human multitudes who have ever died.

Verse 23 Behold those who have weighed the dual nature of things and followed The renunciate's way. Their greatness illumines the world.

Verse 24 He whose firm will, wisdom's goading hook, controls his five senses Is a seed that will flourish in the fields of heaven.

Verse 25 So great is the power of those who subdue the five senses, even Indra, Sovereign of spacious heaven's celestials, suffered their curse.

Verse 26 The great ones are they who can dispatch the most Difficult tasks; the small ones are they who cannot.

Verse 27 Touch, taste, sight, smell and hearing- He who controls these five magically controls the world.

Verse 28 Their own secret sayings reveal to the world The greatness of men whose words prove prophetic.

Verse 29 It is impossible to endure even a moment's wrath of those Who have scaled and stand upon the mountain called virtue.

Verse 30 Renunciates are called the priestly ones For they are clothed in robes of compassion for all life.


Assertion of Virtue's Power

Verse 31 Virtue yields heaven's honor and earth's wealth. What is there then that is more fruitful for a man?

Verse 32 There is nothing more rewarding than virtue, Nor anything more ruinous than its neglect.

Verse 33 Be unremitting in the doing of good deeds. Do them with all your might and by every possible means.

Verse 34 Keep the mind free of impurity. That alone is the practice of virtue. All else is nothing but empty display.

Verse 35 Virtue is living in such a way that one does not fall into these four- Envy, anger, greed and unsavory speech.

Verse 36 Don't tell yourself tomorrow you'll be wise enough to practice virtue. Do it now for it will be your deathless companion when you die.

Verse 37 It is decidedly unnecessary to inquire about virtues' benefits, So evident in the difference between the palanquin's rider and bearer.

Verse 38 Allowing not a day to pass without doing some good is a boulder That will block your passage on the path to future benefits.

Verse 39 Virtuous deeds alone yield true joy. All other deeds, deprived of dignity, earn naught and end in sorrow.

Verse 40 Virtue is merely that which should be done, And vice is merely that which men avoid in life.


Family Life

Verse 41 He alone may be called a householder who supports Those students, elders and renunciates pursuing well their good paths.

Verse 42 The virtuous householder supports the needs Of renunciates, ancestors and the poor.

Verse 43 The foremost duty of the householder is to duly serve these five: God, guests, kindred, ancestors and himself.

Verse 44 Gathering wealth without misdeeds and sharing meals without miserliness, The householder's posterity will never perish.

Verse 45 When family life possesses love and virtue, That is both its essence and fruition.

Verse 46 If a man masters the immeasurable myriad householder's duties, What further merits could a monk's duties mission bring?

Verse 47 Among those who strive for liberation, the foremost are they Who live the blessed state of family life as it should be lived.

Verse 48 The householder dedicated to duty and to aiding Ascetics on their path of penance endures withstands more than they.

Verse 49 Domestic life is rightly called virtue. The monastic path, Rightly lived beyond blame, is likewise good.

Verse 50 He who pursues the householder's life well here on earth Will be placed among the Gods there in heaven.


The Good Wife

Verse 51 She is the helpful wife who possesses the fullness of Household culture and spends within her husband's means.

Verse 52 The fullest family life remains empty If the wife lacks the lofty culture of the home.

Verse 53 What does a man lack if his wife is worthy? And what does he possess if she is lacking worth?

Verse 54 What is more majestic than a women Who commands the copious prodigious strength of chastity?

Verse 55 Even the rains will fall at the command of the wife Who upon rising worships not God, but her husband.

Verse 56 She who vigilantly guards herself, fondly secures her husband's needs And protects their unblemished reputation is truly a wife.

Verse 57 Why do guardians protect women by confinement? Her own Strong-willed staunch chastity is a women's prime supreme protection.

Verse 58 A women deeply devoted to the man who wed her Will be worthy of great rewards in the world where Gods delight

Verse 59 Unless the wife pursues praiseworthy purity, The husband cannot stride prance like a proud lion before his critics.

Verse 60 A worthy wife is the blessing of a home, And good children are its precious ornament.


The Blessing of Children

Verse 61 Of all a man's blessings we know of none greater than The begetting of children endowed with wisdom.

Verse 62 Those who bear children of blameless character Will themselves be born seven times, untouched by evil.

Verse 63 It is said that children are a man's real wealth, For his enduring blessings derive from deeds they do on his behalf.

Verse 64 Far sweeter than divine nectar is simple boiled rice Stirred by the small hands of one's children.

Verse 65 Being touched by one's children is the body's delight, And listening to their chatters them chatter is joy to the ear.

Verse 66 "Sweet are the sounds of the flute and the lute," say those Who have not heard the prattle of their own children.

Verse 67 The father's duty to his son is to make him Worthy of precedence in the assembly of the wise.

Verse 68 What pleasure it is to human beings everywhere When their children possess knowledge surpassing their own!

Verse 69 When a mother hears her son heralded a good and learned man, Her joy exceeds that of his joyous birth.

Verse 70 The son's duty to his father is to make the world ask, "By what great austerities did he merit such a son?"


Possessing Love

Verse 71 Can any lock keep love confined within, When the loving heart's small tears escape and confess it?

Verse 72 The unloving belong only to themselves, But the loving belong to others to their very bones.

Verse 73 They say it is to know union with love That the soul takes union with the body.

Verse 74 Love makes a man affectionate toward all, And affection affords the priceless treasure of friendship.

Verse 75 They say love's greatness is this: it yields to good families Worldly happiness here and heavenly bliss there.

Verse 76 The ignorant declare love only draws us towards virtue, Forgetting love is friend to all immersed in vice.

Verse 77 As the blazing sun dries up a boneless worm, So does virtue scorch a loveless being.

Verse 78 Without love in the heart, Life is like a sapless tree in a barren desert.

Verse 79 What good is a body perfect in outer ways, If inwardly it is impaired by lack of love?

Verse 80 With love enshrined in the heart, one lives. Without it, the body is mere just bone encased in skin.


Hospitality

Verse 81 The consummate purpose of maintaining a home And earning wealth is to provide hospitality to guests.

Verse 82 To hoard one's meal when a guest is in the home Is improper-even if it is the nectar of immortality.

Verse 83 The life of the man who daily cares for those who Come to him will never suffer from poverty's uncaring ruin.

Verse 84 Wealth's goddess dwells in the hospitable home Of one those who hosts guests with a smiling face.

Verse 85 If a man eats only after attending to guests' needs, What further sowing will his fertile fields require?

Verse 86 The host who cares for guests and watches hopefully for more, Will himself be a welcomed guest of those whose home is heaven.

Verse 87 Charity's merit cannot be measured by gifts given. It is measured by measuring the receiver's merits.

Verse 88 Those who never sacrifice to care for guests will later lament, "We hoarded wealth, estranged ourselves, now none will care for us."

Verse 89 The poorest penury is having plenty but neglecting guests. Such senselessness is only found in senseless fools.

Verse 90 The delicate anicham flower withers when merely smelled, But an unwelcome look is enough to wither the heart of a guest.


Speaking Pleasant Words

Verse 91 Pleasant words are those which, full of tenderness And free from deceit, fall from the lips of virtuous men.

Verse 92 Better than a gift given with a joyous heart Are sweet words spoken with a cheerful smile.

Verse 93 A kindly countenance and sweet words Spoken from the heart-these are virtue's way.

Verse 94 Poverty-provoking sorrow will not pursue Those who speak joy-producing words to all they meet.

Verse 95 Humility and pleasant words are the jewels That adorn a man; there are none other.

Verse 96 If a man seeks good works while speaking sweet words, His virtues will wax and his vices wane.

Verse 97 Words yield spiritual rewards and moral excellence When they do not wander far from usefulness and agreeableness

Verse 98 Sweet speech which is stranger to pettiness inparts pleasure Not only in this life, but in the next.

Verse 99 Why would anyone speak cruel words, Having observed the happiness that kind words confer?

Verse 100 To utter harsh words when sweet ones would serve Is like eating unripe fruit when ripe ones are at hand.

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