Episode # 76 – Four important activities equivalent of “Double-edged swords” – Vidura’s beautiful explanation!!!


In the previous episode we had witnessed Vidura’s explanation on four important aspects that would give us immediate results in this world. Firstly, if we are able to please the “Devathaas” with our actions, their “Sankalpa” (Will & wish) can fulfil any tough task that we need to undertake. The second aspect that can give us immediate results is the grace and spiritual powers of “Mahaans” or “Spiritual Masters”. Thirdly, the “down-to-earth” characteristic of a scholarly person would also yields immediate results. Finally, the fourth item that Vidura explains is that, the destruction of those who commit sins or follow the “Adharmic” path, would immediately and automatically restore the “Dharma” in this world! Thus these are the four items that yield immediate results for a person in this world.

Now moving on further, Vidura explains the next four items that are essential for us in today’s world.

“Chathvaari karmaan abhayankaraani! Bhayam prayachhantyathaa akritaani!!”

Here Vidura explains four important activities that would give us immense success and welfare, if done with sincerity and honesty. At the same time, if we perform these same four activities just for the sake of doing them, or to garner cheap publicity or fame, they would lead us to great danger! Thus, the purpose with which we perform these following four actions would decide our fate – Whether it is going to give us good or bad effects!

“Maana agnihothramutha maana maunam!

Maanena adheethamutha maana yagnyaha!!”

Thus here are the four activities that Vidura explains:

  1. Maana agnihothramutha” – We perform many spiritual duties in front of the “Sacred Fire(Agni) isn’t it? If we perform these spiritual practices with the sincere intentions that we are doing our duties correctly and honestly, it gives immense peace and bliss to our lives. At the same time, if we start performing these spiritual practices just for the sake of publicity and to gain the attention of people around to get their appreciation, it might end up in a disaster. This is because, as explained in the previous sloka, the “Devatas” (Celestial Beings) become happy if we perform these spiritual practices with sincerity. It is only because of their happiness, we are going to get all the prosperity in our lives. At the same time, if we’re doing these spiritual practices without any sincerity and just for the sake of publicity, the “Devatas” are going to get angry on us and their anger is going to be detrimental for our lives! Hence we need to be extremely sincere and honest while doing our spiritual practices everyday. We should not perform spiritual practices just because someone else is performing them, or to gain cheap publicity or just to grab attention of people around. This might lead us to disaster!
  2. “Maana maunam”Here Vidura explains a very important point – Exhibiting “Mouna” or “Silence”. Why is it controversial? If we keep silence when the situation demands, it becomes good for us. Whereas, if we keep mum when the situation demands us to rise up to the occasion and talk, this same silence can lead us to detrimental effects! For instance in the modern day, if there are some unwanted gossips going around us by our friends or relatives, it is good to keep ourselves away from that and keep silent. This is because, if we get into unwanted talks and gossips, our focus towards Bhagawan and our mission gets badly derailed and it becomes extremely difficult to come back to the track! Moreover, if there are some unwanted fights, verbal abuses, etc. it is better not to poke our nose into all that. The perfect example of this is our great cricket player, Mr. Sachin Tendulkar – If the opponent team’s bowlers try to get into a verbal duel with Mr. Tendulkar, it doesn’t not get him distracted. Rather, his reply would come from the bat! In other words, his bat would do the talking, rather than his mouth! Here we can see that, if we give into unwanted verbal duels, our mind becomes rattled and we lose our focus. Once we lose our focus, it becomes very easy for the opponent to win over us! Hence we should ensure that we control our instincts and maintain our silence when it matters. At the same time, if there is an allegation against us or if somebody is trying to play politics by using our name and reputation we should not keep quiet at this moment. Rather, we should rise and speak up against the odds to clear the air. If at this time we are not willing to speak up, it would mean that we are accepting a mistake that we’ve never done! Hence here we can see that silence is a double-edged sword! We need to keep silent when required, but at the same time we need to speak up when the situation demands us to do so!
  3. Maanena adheethamutha”Here again, Vidura explains yet another important point – Education is of prime importance to all of us. If we undertake the education with the genuine interest and passion towards it, it yields us good results! Whereas, if we undertake the education without the interest and passion towards it, it might end up being disastrous for our personal growth! How valid is Vidura’s explanation in today’s scenario! Previously (until some 20 years back), we were seeing that pursuing a Degree in “Engineering” or a “Medicine” was done only by very few candidates who were meritorious in their academic career and only by those people who were really passionate in becoming an engineer or a medical practitioner (Doctor). However, what is happening today? The society in India has become so crazy that almost every house has atleast one or two engineers. It is sad to note that India is producing innumerable engineers every year who do not even have the passion to pursue a career in the field of engineering! Thus, the four years that a student spends studying engineering becomes a complete waste! Unfortunately we as a society fail to realize this. We are getting carried away by the “peer pressure” amongst the society – “Just because one person is doing an engineering degree, I should also go for it!” Hence the message here is that, if we are undertaking a stream of education, we should do so with our utmost passion and interest. If we do not have that passion or interest in this particular subject, it is better not to waste time on it and rather we can look out for other options!
  4. Maana yagnyaha”Here Vidura explains that a “Yagnya(Sacrificial offer to Bhagawan) should be undertaken with utmost care and sincerity. However in today’s scenario, many of us think that performing a “Yagnya” is the best way to fulfill many of our wishes. This is a wrong understanding. First of all, we don’t even know if the person who performs the “Yagnya” on our behalf is really qualified enough to undertake it or not. For performing a “Yagnya” there are so many austerities that are to be in place. The person who is performing the “Yagnya” should be scholarly in the Vedas. Just because someone is doing a “Yagnya” somewhere and if we’ve to start performing all these, it leads us to disaster!

Thus for today let us ponder on these four activities that are like “double-edged swords”. Let us realize the significance of these activities and appreciate them. We should undertake these activities with respect, sincerity, interest and passion. Else, it would become a disaster! Let us realize this fact for today and we shall wait for the next episode to look into Vidura’s next interesting explanation! Stay tuned! 🙂

Published by Dr. Jeayaram

Holds a PhD in Management Psychology from Universite Paris Saclay, Paris, France. Also an Asst. Professor of Human Resources management at International School of Business & Media, Pune, India. A professional South Indian classical musician (singer) performing concerts. Through this blog, I'm trying to bring out the richness of Indian culture & values and I request your support and feedbacks in making this humble effort a success!!

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