Thursday, 15 October 2020

Neeti Satakam - English Meaning


1. Salutations to the calm effulgence, that is unlimited by space, time etc., is infinite consciousness itself, and is realized only by one’s own experience.

2. Not translated

3. The ignorant person is easily pleased, and a wise one even more easily so. But not even the creator, Brahma, can please one who is haughty due to a small amount of knowledge.

4.  One might extract a jewel from the jaws of a shark, or cross the restless ocean with its tumbling waves, or bear an angry serpent on one’s head like a flower. But no one can please the heart of a stubborn fool.

5. One might extract oil from sand with assiduous pressing, or drink the water of the mirage when driven by thirst, or roaming about, even find the horn of a hare. But no one can please the heart of a stubborn fool.

6. He who wants to lead evil-doers to the right path with the nectar-exuding words of good people, is like one who sets out to bind an elephant with the soft fibres of lotus stalks, or cut diamonds with the edge of a Sirisha flower, or sweeten the salty ocean with a drop of honey.

7. Silence is a unique cover for ignorance that is available to all, which the Creator has made. Especially in a gathering of learned people, it is an ornament to the ignorant.

8. When I knew little, I was like an elephant blinded by pride, and my mind was arrogant thinking “I know everything”. Gradually, as I gained understanding in the company of wise people, the fever of my pride slipped away, and I realized I know nothing.

9. Happily gnawing at a human bone infested with worms, wet with saliva, foul-smelling, disgusting, and  fleshless, with relish for its incomparable taste, the dog does not even notice Indra if he was nearby. A lowly creature does not mind the insignificance of its objects.

10. Ganga fell from the heavens to Shiva’s head, from there to the mountain and from the lofty mountain to earth, and thence to the ocean. Falling lower and lower she has reached a lesser position. Ruin occurs in a hundred ways, to those who lack judgement.

11. Fire can be extinguished by water and the sun’s heat countered with an umbrella. With a sharp goad the best of elephants in rut, is controlled. The bull and the donkey are restrained with a stick. Diseases can be cured with a bouquet of medicines. Poison can be neutralized with Mantras. Everything has a remedy in the books of knowledge, but there is none for a fool.

12. Bereft of literature, music and arts, a man is but a beast without a tail and horns. It’s the great fortune of the animals that he can survive without eating grass.

13. Those without learning, penance, charity, awareness, good conduct and righteousness, are animals roaming in human garb, and are a burden to this earth.

14. Roaming in unapproachable mountains in the company of forest-dwellers, is superior to the company of fools even if in the palaces of Indra’s heaven.

15. The king, in whose territory well-known, learned people, whose words are embellished by the Shastras and hence pleasing, whose knowledge of sacred works is worthy of imparting to disciples, live in poverty - it speaks of the ruler’s ignorance indeed. Learned ones are masters even without wealth. The gem appraisers are to blame, and not the gems, if the latter are valued less than their real worth.

16. Learning is the invisible wealth that cannot be touched by a thief, that gives supreme benefits, that always increases when distributed to seekers, and does not get destroyed even when the world comes to an end. O kings, give up arrogance towards those who have this wealth. Who can compete with them?

17. Do not disrespect wise people who have mastered the highest truth. Wealth, worthless as grass to them, does not constrain them. A lotus fibre cannot stop elephants whose cheeks are darkened by marks of fresh rut.

18. The Creator, if angered, may rob the swan of the pleasure of living in a cluster of lotus plants, but he is incapable of taking away its wide fame for its skill in separating milk from water.

(A powerful king may deprive the poets and scholars of wealth and comfort, but cannot take away their abilities.)

19. Armlets and necklaces shining like the moon, do not adorn a person. Nor do baths, perfumes, flowers and decked hair. Refined speech alone adorns the person bearing it. All ornaments fade away; the ornament of speech is the only lasting one.

20. Learning is enhanced beauty. It is a hidden, guarded treasure. It gives enjoyment, fame and happiness. It is the greatest of great things. When travelling to foreign lands, it is a friend. It is the supreme deity. It is learning, not wealth that is venerated by kings. A person who is bereft of learning is indeed a beast.

21.  When one has forgiveness, what need is served by an armour? When there is anger, why do people need (other) enemies? What use is there for fire when kinsfolk exist (to cause destruction)? What purpose can medicines serve when there is a friend (to help healing)? If there are evil people, serpents are not necessary and neither is wealth, when there is defect-free learning. What is the use of ornaments when one has modesty, and if one has beautiful poetry, even kingship has no value.

22. The stability of the world depends on those men alone, who are skilled in the arts and who display kindness to kinsfolk, compassion to others, deceit towards evildoers, friendship to good people, diplomacy to kings, honesty to the learned, bravery to foes, patience with elders and tact with women.

23. Association with good people removes dullness of the intellect, infuses one’s speech with truth, confers dignity, removes sin, gives clarity and joy to the heart and brings fame in all directions. Tell me, what does it not do for men?

24.  Victorious are the fortunate great poets, who have mastered the Rasas. Their body of fame knows no fear of old age and death.

25. Only when Hari, the remover of the troubles of the world, is pleased,  a man gets the following -  a son with noble qualities, a loving, noble wife, a charitable master, an affectionate friend, loyal servants, a mind that is light with no worries, a charming form, lasting wealth and a face radiant with knowledge.

26. Abstaining from killing, restraint in taking others’ wealth , truthful speech, charity according to means, at the right time, muteness in talking about others’ wives, restricting the stream of desire , humility to elders, kindness to all creatures – this is the path to welfare, unfailing and universal to all scriptures.

27. Nothing is begun by the lowly, for fear of hurdles. Average people begin (something) but stop when interrupted by troubles. Even if repeatedly beset by difficulties, great people do not abandon what they have begun.

28. Who showed this avowed path, difficult as walking on the razor’s edge, to good people: pleasant yet fair conduct, a wrong deed being impossible even when one’s life is in peril,  no supplication to the wicked, never beseeching a friend who has little wealth, high-mindedness in adversity and deference to great people ?

29. Even when weak with hunger, thin due to old age, largely unsteady and in a pitiable condition, with his lustre and vitality lost, will the lion, foremost among the proud and great, eat dry grass? His desire is fixed on devouring mouthfuls from the crown of a rutting elephant split open (by himself.)

30. A dog gets satisfaction with a small bone, with a little fat and muscle on it, even if it is fleshless and not enough to satiate its hunger. A lion rejects a jackal available at hand, and kills an elephant. Everyone desires a goal matching his strength, even if he has to go through difficulty.

31. A dog wags his tail, falls at his feet and rolls on the ground displaying its maw, to its feeder. A majestic elephant looks calmly (at the feeder) and eats only after many persuasive words.

32. In the ever-changing world, who does not attain birth or death? (Every one does.) He is (truly) said to be born, by whose birth his family attains eminence.

33. A high-minded person has (only) two kinds of existence, like that of a bunch of flowers. Either they adorn the crest of all the world, or wither away  in wilderness.

34. O Brother! There are five or six other respected planets, such as Brhaspati, but Rahu, keen on (facing) superior valour, does not oppose them. He, the chief of Asuras, with only his head left in his body, eclipses only two of them, the Sun and the Moon (the Lords of day and night respectively), on the new moon and full moon days.

35. Sesha bears the row of worlds on the plank of his hoods, and he is borne always by the great Tortoise on his back. The ocean indifferently makes even him, rest in an alcove (in his waters.) Oh, the glory of the actions of the great are limitless.

36. It would have been better for the son of Himavan (Mainaka) to have his wings cut by the terrible strokes of the Vajra thrown by the proud Indra, spitting rising thick flames.It was not appropriate to plunge into the waters of the ocean, when his father was powerless due to pain.

37. When even the insentient sun-jewel blazes when touched by the feet (rays) of the sun, how can a powerful man tolerate an insult done by others?

38. A lion, though young, attacks elephants whose wall-like cheeks are stained with rut. This is the nature of the brave. Age, indeed, is not the cause of valour.

39. Let caste go underground, and all good qualities go further down. Let conduct tumble down a mountain, and noble birth be consumed by fire. May thunder strike instantly at bravery towards foes. Let wealth alone be ours, without with, all these virtues are but like blades of grass.

40. It is the same senses all, the same acts, the same unimpeded intellect, the same speech. Yet, the same man, when bereft of the warmth of wealth, in a second, becomes another person. This is strange. (Lack of wealth transforms a man totally, even if his faculties remain the same.

41. A man who has wealth is high-born and a scholar. He is learned and discerning. He alone is eloquent and handsome. All virtues depend on gold (wealth).

42. A king is ruined by evil counsel, a Sanyasi by attachment and a child by indulgence. A Brahmin is ruined by not studying (the Vedas), a family by a wicked son and good conduct by serving an evil-doer. Modesty is lost by wine, cultivated land by neglect, and affection by a sojourn abroad. Friendship is destroyed by lack of solicitude, abundance by mismanagement, and wealth by careless spending.

43. Charity, enjoyment, and ruin are the three ways of wealth to go spent. He who neither gives nor enjoys has the third course (left for his wealth).

44. A gem polished on a grindstone, a victor of a battle injured with weapons, an elephant weakened by rutting, a river’s sandy bed shrunken in autumn, the moon with a single digit left, a young woman weary with love sports and people whose wealth is reduced by giving to seekers – all these shine due to their emaciation.

45. An impoverished man desires a handful of grains. When he is affluent, he considers the world as equal to just a blade of grass. Hence, due to the variability of worth or triviality of things, (we can say that) it is one’s position that enhances or reduces (the value of) objects.

46. O King, if you wish to milk the cow that is this earth, nourish now the people of the world, like a calf. When the calf is well-cared, the earth yields all fruits, like the desire-granting creeper.

47. Now true, now false, sometimes harsh, sometimes pleasing, hurtful and merciful at different times, greedy and generous by turns, always spending and accumulating lots of wealth – the policy of kings, like a courtesan, has many forms.

48. What is the use of seeking sanctuary with kings, to those who do not cultivate these six qualitites : power to command, fame, the nurturance of Brahmanas, charity, gratification and the protection of friends.

49. Whatever is the wealth written on one’s forehead, a little or lots, one will attain that even in a desert, and not more even on the golden mountain, Meru. Therefore, be fearless and do not grovel before the rich. Know that a pitcher takes in the same quantity of water from a well as from the ocean.

50. O Eminent cloud! Who does not know that you are the sole life-support of the Chataka birds? Why then do you wait for our pitiful entreaties?

51.  O Chataka, my friend! Listen attentively for a moment. There are many clouds in the sky, yet not all of them are such (worthy of asking). Some drench the earth with showers, some simply roar in vain. Do not utter pitiful words before everyone you see.

52. Ruthlessness, unfounded hostility, desire for another’s wealth and wife, envy towards good people and relatives – these are naturally found in the wicked.

53. An evil person is to be avoided, even if adorned with learning. Is the cobra, despite being decorated with a gem, not fearsome?

54. Ignorance is ascribed to a modest man, deceit in an austere man, hypocrisy to a pure man, ruthlessness to a brave one and lack of intelligence to an ascetic. Poverty or need is attributed to one who speaks sweetly, arrogance to a powerful one, garrulity to an eloquent speaker and incompetence to a strong, calm man. Which virtue of good people is not maligned by the wicked?

55. If there is greed, what is the need for other bad qualities?  If there is slandering, what is need of other sins? If there is truth, what is the need of penance? If the mind is pure where is the need for pilgrimage? If there is friendliness, where is the need for relatives? If there is glory, what is the use of ornaments? If there is true learning, why does one need wealth? If there is disgrace, why does one need death?

56. The moon pale by day, a lovely woman past her youth, a lake bereft of lotuses, the unlettered mouth (speech) of a handsome man, a powerful man devoted to wealth, a good man ever in misfortune, a wicked man in a king’s court – these are seven barbs in my heart.

57. There is no one dear as one’s own, to a king with a fierce temper. The fire, burns even the sacrificer offering oblations, if touched (by him).

58. The norms of serving are complex, incomprehensible even to sages. If silent the servant is labelled dumb, if quick to reply, flippant and loquacious. If he stays close he is called audacious, and if not, diffident. If patient (with rebukes etc.) then he is timid, if not tolerating them, he is discourteous.

59. The norms of serving are complex, incomprehensible even to sages. If silent the servant is labelled dumb, if quick to reply, flippant and loquacious. If he stays close he is called audacious, and if not, diffident. If patient (with rebukes etc.) then he is timid, if not tolerating them, he is discourteous.59.  Who can live in peace, in the vicinity of the base man, who incites all other wicked people, who has no restraint, who has forgotten his earlier lowly activities, who despises virtues but has obtained glory by fate?

60. The friendships of evil and good people are like the shadows of the forenoon and afternoon respectively. The former starts big and tapers slowly while the latter starts small and grows later.

61. In this world, deer, fish and good people, subsisting on grass, water and contentment respectively, have the hunter, fisherman and evil men as enemies for no reason.

62. Salutations to those men in whom these impeccable virtues reside : desire for association with good people, pleasure in others’ merits, humility towards elders, striving for learning, delight only in one’s wife, fear of censure, devotion into Shiva, power to restrain oneself, and freedom from the association of the wicked.

63. Courage in adversity, forbearance in prosperity, eloquence in a gathering, heroism in battle, delight in fame, efforts in (study of) the Vedas – these are natural in great souls..

64. Who showed this difficult path of walking on the razor’s edge, to the good people – charity in private, eager reception to one who has come home, silence after a good turn, not announcing acts of kindness in public, modesty in wealth and speaking of others without disrespect.

65. Even without wealth, these become the adornment of naturally high-minded people: praiseworthy charity to the hand, obeisance at the feet of elders to the head, true words to the mouth, matchless victorious bravery, to the shoulders, frankness to the heart and mastery over learning to the ears.

66. During prosperity, the minds of great men are tender as a lotus. In adversity, it is hard as the solid rock in a great mountain.

67. No sign of the water is seen when it falls on heated iron. It shines on a lotus-leaf, resembling a pearl. When it falls into an oyster in the ocean, on the day of Svati constellation, it becomes a real pearl. Generally low, mediocre and superior qualities emerge by association.

68. He is a son who pleases his father with good deeds. She is a wife who desires only the welfare of the husband. He is a friend who behaves the same in adversity and in happiness. Only those with merit acquire these three in this world.

69. Who would not worship respectable, good people whose conduct is extraordinary - rising due to humility; making their own virtues known by narrating others’ virtues; achieving their own ends by efforts in vast undertakings for others’ sake; vitiating foul-mouthed abusers by their patience alone ?

70. Trees are bent low when fruits appear. Clouds hang very low when (filled) with new waters. Good people are modest in prosperity. This is the nature of altruistic people.

71. The ear is adorned by learning, not by an earring; the hand is adorned by giving, not by a bracelet. The form of kind people is radiant due to altruism and not sandal-paste.

72. Noble people say that such is the definition of a good friend: he saves one from sin, leads to welfare, protects secrets, publicises one’s virtues, does not leave one in distress, and gives (the needed things) at the right time.

73. The sun causes the pool of lotuses to bloom. The moon makes the host of lilies blossom. Even though unasked, the cloud gives water. Good people take efforts towards others’ welfare voluntarily.

74. Those who enable the welfare of others, giving up their own good, are noble people. Common people are those who take up enterprises that help others without conflicting with their own good. Human ogres are those who ruin public good for their own benefit. We know not what to call those who ruin others’ welfare for no purpose.

75. At first, all its qualities were given by milk to the water in itself. Seeing the boiling (suffering) of milk, water sacrificed itself to fire (evaporated). Seeing its friend’s difficulty, the milk rose to immolate itself in fire, but when united with water it cooled down. Such (always helping each other in distress) is the friendship of good people.

76. To one side lies Vishnu. Elsewhere, the clan of his foes (the demons) lives. In another part rest the group of mountains seeking refuge. In yet another side, the marine fire resides along with all the apocalyptic clouds. Oh, how vast, mighty and capable is the expanse of the ocean.

77. Check (your) desire, practice patience, give up pride, and do not take pleasure in sinful deeds. Speak the truth, follow the path of good people, and serve the learned people. Respect those who deserve respect, appease enemies, and conceal your merits. Protect (your) good reputation and show mercy to those in sorrow. This is the definition of good people.

78. There are a few good people, filled with the nectar of purity in thought, word and action, pleasing the three worlds with a series of beneficial acts. They make a mountain of the tiniest virtues of others and rejoice in their heart.

79. Of what avail are the golden and silver mountains, the trees growing on which remain the same trees. We respect the Malaya Mountain, inhabiting which even Kankola, Neem and Kutaja become sandal trees.

80. The Devas were not content with the precious gems (that emerged from the ocean). They did not take fright at the terrible poison. They did not stop till they obtained ambrosia. Courageous ones do not turn back from the determined goal.

81. Sometimes sleeping on the (bare) earth and sometimes on a couch, sometimes eating only vegetables and sometimes tasting rice, sometimes wearing rags and beautiful clothes at other times : A brave person bent upon (accomplishing) a task does not care for comfort or hardship.

82. Kindness is the ornament of prosperity while silence is that of valour. Restraint is the adornment for wisdom and humility, that for learning.  Distribution to the deserving embellishes wealth. Lack of anger is the ornament of penance, forbearance that of a powerful one, and sincerity that of following righteousness. Good character, which is the root cause of all these, is the ornament of all.

83. Experts in policy or ethics may censure or praise (them); The Goddess of wealth may enter (their house) or leave at will; Death may come (to them) today or in a later eon; regardless, wise and courageous people do not swerve from the path of righteousness.

84. The quality of courage of a brave person cannot be erased even when he is perturbed, just as even the flame of a fire that is made to face downwards never flows downwards.

85. He is a courageous man, who conquers the three worlds, whose heart is not wounded by the dart-like glances of beautiful women, who is not consumed by the heat of the fire of anger, and whom the mighty sense-objects do not lure with snares of greed.

86. Even if struck down with blows from a hand, a ball only rebounds. Generally the misfortunes of those of good conduct are temporary.

87. It is good even when this body is shattered amidst rocks, falling upon some uneven ground from the tall peak of a great mountain, or that one’s hand is thrust into the mouth of the king of snakes with a sharp bite, or falling into fire (occurs), as long as loss of character is not acquired.

88. Fire becomes like water, the ocean a creek (instantly), Meru a small rock, the lion (at once) a deer, the snake a garland, and poison a shower of ambrosia, to him in whose person good character, dear to the entire world, manifests.

89. A tree grows even after being cut. The moon, though waned, waxes again. Reflecting thus, good people do not suffer pain when troubled.

90. Indra (the slayer of Bala) has Brhaspati as his guide, the Vajra as weapon, the gods as soldiers, the heaven as fortress, the blessings of Vishnu and Airavata as elephant.  Even though endowed with such fortunes and power, he was defeated by enemies in battle. It is clear that fate is our refuge. Oh, fie, fie upon valour that is useless.

91. A mouse, making a hole in a basket at night, fell into the mouth of a despairing serpent whose body was constricted in the basket and limbs weak with hunger. Sated with its meat, the serpent quickly exited through the same way.  O people! See, it is fate that causes men’s rise and fall.

92. The results which men get, depend on (prior) actions. The intellect also acts according to (prior) actions. Even then, a wise man should do anything only after weighing it carefully.

93. A bald man, tormented by the sun’s rays (falling) on his head, seeking a shaded place, reached the foot of a palm tree by chance. There again, his head was split loudly by a falling big fruit.  Misfortunes generally follow a luckless man wherever he goes.

94. Seeing the eclipse of the sun and the moon by the planet Rahu, the captivity of the elephant and the snake and the poverty of intelligent people, my conclusion is: Oh, Fate is mighty!

95. Having created a gem of a man, an adornment to the earth and a repository of all virtues, yet if the Creator makes him short-lived, alas, woe to His indiscretion.

96. Consumption does not leave the moon, though he is the repository of nectar, the lord of medicinal herbs, followed by Satabhisak (a hundred physicians, a constellation by the name) and the crown-jewel of Shiva. By whom can the miserable effects of fate be overcome?

97. Whatever is allotted to one by the powerful Fate, only that comes one’s way. Not even a great patron can be the cause (for more). Even though the cloud showers every day, fulfilling everyone’s wishes, only a few tiny drops of water fall into the Chataka’s mouth.

98. When the Karira tree’s branch has no leaf, what is the fault of the spring? If the owl does not see by day, what guilt is there on the Sun’s part? If the shower does not fall into the mouth of the Chataka, what is the cloud’s fault? Who can erase what is written on one’s forehead by Fate beforehand.

99. We would salute the gods, but they too are under the control of accursed Fate. Brahma is venerable, yet, He too, gives only the results assigned to each action. Results depend on action. So what is the use of gods and Brahma? Salutations to that action, Karma, which even Brahma cannot overpower.

100. Salutations to that Order or Karma, by which Brahma is restricted as a potter inside the vessel-like Universe, by which Vishnu was thrown to the very perilous depths of the ten incarnations, by which Rudra was made to wander for alms with a skull in his palm, and by which the sun roams the sky incessantly.

101. Appearance, lineage, conduct, learning, and even service rendered with effort – none of these give results. Fortunes, earned by earlier meritorious deeds, indeed give fruit in time, just as trees do.

102. Good deeds performed earlier, protect a person, whether in a forest or in war, amidst enemies or in water or fire, in the great ocean or in the summit of a mountain, even if he is asleep, careless or in danger.

103. O Good man! To enjoy desired results, worship virtuous conduct, the all-powerful goddess who converts wicked people to good, fools to wise men, enemies to well-wishers, the imperceptible to perceptible and deadly poison into nectar, in a trice. Do not, with vain efforts, place your hope on numerous other virtues.

104. When merits from good deeds continue, a splendid abode, sportive young women and prosperity resplendent with a (royal) white umbrella are enjoyed for a long time. When it snaps, let it be seen that these instantly scatter away in all directions, like a slipping necklace of pearls with its string broken during playful romantic tiffs.

105. Whether a deed is good or bad, its consequences must be analysed assiduously by a wise man. The result of actions done with great haste, becomes a dart that stings the heart until death.

106. The unfortunate man who, being born in this land, the Karma-bhumi, does not practise penance, is like one who, in vessel studded with Vaidurya (gems), cooks sesame oil-cake with sandalwood for fuel, or like one who furrows the earth with a gold ploughshare for the roots of the crown-flower shrub, or like one who makes a fence with camphor plant cuttings, for a millet-field.


107. One may plunge into water, ascend the peak of Meru, or conquer foes in war. One may learn skills like trading and farming and all the arts, or traverse the vast sky like a bird, with great effort. Yet, that which is not meant to be, never happens, nor what is meant to be, as a result of prior actions, ever prevented.

108. To one who has vast merits from good deeds done earlier, a terrible forest becomes a capital city. Everyone is good to him, and the entire earth is filled with riches and gems.


Miscellaneous Slokas


1. Laziness is the terrible enemy residing within the body of men. There is no friend like enterprise, carrying out which, one does not perish.

2. What is truly a gain? The company of the virtuous. What is misery? The company of the unwise. What is loss? Wasting time. What is proficiency? Finding joy in righteous principles? Who is a hero? One who conquers his senses. Who is most beloved? A devoted wife. What is wealth? Learning. What is happiness? Not having to migrate. What is kingship? The power to command.

3. A high-minded person has (only) two kinds of existence, like that of a Malati flower. Either they adorn the crest of all the world, or wither away in wilderness.

4. The earth is adorned here and there by people who are impoverished in unpleasant words, rich in pleasing words, delighted (only) with their wives and averse to criticising others.

5. Just as the earth is suffused with the rays from abundantly shining brilliance of the sun, it is overpowered by the tread of even one heroic man.

6. Brave men, striving to be always truthful, happily give up even their lives for rather than their promise, which, (to them) is like one’s own mother, immensely pure-hearted and loyal, and the source of modesty and a host of other virtues.

7. Not translated

8. Leave aside the question whether a good man, wounded in the battlefront, shall attain victory or heaven; the appreciation of both the armies is, indeed, very pleasing to the ear.

9. In this (universe) of immensely endless wonders, Varaha and Rahu are powerful objects of amazement. One lifted the earth submerged in water, and the other, with only a head remaining, swallows and releases his enemy.

10. The earth is bounded by the ocean. The ocean is a hundred Yojanas wide.  Sun, the eternal pilgrim, spans the expanse of the sky. Thus, things are generally limited to clearly-seen boundaries. It is the blossoming of the wisdom of great people that conquers limits.

11. One can have one God – Vishnu or Shiva, one friend – a king or an ascetic, one dwelling – a city or a forest, and one wife – a beautiful lady or a cave.

(If one has earthly ambitions he would worship Vishnu the protector, befriend a king, live in a city and marry a beautiful lady. If one seeks liberation from the world, he would take the other options mentioned.)

12. The earth is held up by the Tortoise, the (seven) principal mountains, the elephants (of the eight directions) and by the serpent king, yet it moves. The promise of pure-hearted men does not move (remains steady) even at the end of the world.

13. Does not the Tortoise suffer pain on his body due to his burden, that he does not throw down the earth? Does not the Sun feel tiredness, that he never stays still? But a worthy man shies away inwardly, from giving up a task accepted (by him.) Carrying on undertaken tasks is the hereditary vow of good people.

14. Who, in this world, does not give in when his mouth is filled with food? The Mridanga produces a sweet sound, when its face (upper side) is smeared (with dough).

15. There are thousands of petty men, engrossed in activities to maintain themselves. That man alone is the foremost among good people, to whom others’ welfare is his own. The submarine fire drinks the sea to fulfil its insatiable appetite, while the cloud does so only to cease the suffering of the world caused by summer.

16. A minister gathers new wealth from far-off places, avoids the twang of bows (that indicates disputes). He is engrossed in pleasing the assembly of good people, takes slow and deliberate steps after the hearts (wishes) of people. He is never free from the burden of worry.

He is like the poet who puts together fresh meanings (or ideas) from various places, avoids inappropriate words, is engaged in delighting the assembly of good people and arranges every word carefully according to the hearts (tastes) of people.

(This verse is a Slesha or pun, where each phrase can be interpreted in two ways, to apply to the minister and the poet.)

17. Good people should be served, even if they do not (explicitly) give good counsel. Even their spontaneous conversations provide guidelines to live.

18. Generally, a high-minded man falls like a ball (and bounces back), but a lowly man falls like a clod of earth (not rising again).

19. If ever, by a turn of fate, the world became devoid of lotuses, would then a swan, like a rooster, scrape the garbage?

20. That sleepy, languid elephants with their temples riven by rut, stand at one’s door, and gold-bedecked, proud horses prance, and he is woken from sleep with the sounds of the Veena, flutes, drums, conches and tabors like the lord of the heavens – all this is the result of (the merit from) righteousness.

21. Redness in lotuses, altruism in good men, and mercilessness in the wicked – these three are endowed by nature in the three.

22. Truthful words are the highest ornament (for one), modesty and slenderness of the middle are adornments for a woman. Learning and patience too are ornaments to the twice-born. Good conduct is an ornament to all men.

23. O Dear friend! Evil fate, like an expert potter, rolls up our mind like a ball of clay, places it on the wheel of anxiety which moves coming in contact with a series of strokes from the stick of misfortune and whirls it. We know not what he will fashion (from it).

24. O dull-witted man! Desist from this ill-advised, unpleasant task of wanting to see the steadfastness of great men crumble in adversity. They are not the lowly Kula mountains or oceans which transgress their bounds during the apocalypse.

25. The goddess of victory likes the chest of warriors wounded with a long sword, just as a skillful, confident woman desires the chest of a brave man marked by (her) long nails.

 (English Meanings contributed by Smt Rajani)

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