Episode # 89 – Performing spiritual practices for selfish motives – Current day’s looming threat!!!

We’ve commenced an important discussion in the previous episode wherein Vidura is explaining six different categories of people who are dependent on six of their counterparts so as to be successful in whatever they do. For the benefit of our readers’ understanding, let us look at the sloka once more.

“Shadime shatsu jeevanthi sapthamo nopa labhyathe!

Chowraaha pramathe jeevanthi vyaadideshu chikitsakaaha!!

Pramadaaha kaamayaaneshu yajamaaneshu yaajakaaha!

Rajaa vividhamaaneshu nithyam moorkeshu pandithaaha!!”

Here we’ve discussed about the first three categories of people and their counterparts – “Chowraaha pramathe jeevanthi”, which means that a thief depends on fools to cheat and become successful. “Vyaadideshu chikitsakaaha” means a doctor’s success depends on the number of sick people he/she attends to and “Pramodaaha kaamyaaneshu” means a prostitute makes more money when she meets more men with excessive sexual desires. We’ve seen the relevance of these three categories of people in the modern day and how we shouldn’t fall into the trap of these three important categories.

Now moving on further, we shall witness the next three important categories of people and their counterparts.

“Yajamaaneshu yaajakaaha” – Here Vidura explains that the success of a “Rithvik” who performs the holy “Yagnas” and other important spiritual practices depend upon those people who want these to be performed. Today we’ve started to witness many people wanting to perform different types of “Yagnas” and “Homas” at their homes and even at their workplaces for various reasons best known to them! I’ve already discussed a glimpse about this context in one of our previous episodes wherein we’ve witnessed that those who perform three highly respected spiritual practices should be scholarly in the Vedas. Only such people have the authority to perform these practices. Extending this context further, nowadays we’ve started to view all these highly sacred spiritual practices in the commercial sense or perspective, wherein some people are ready to spend huge amounts of money to perform these practices for fulfilling their selfish motives. Sadly today, even “Rithviks” who perform these spiritual practices go behind these people just because they would get an opportunity to make huge amounts of money! Thus, the message conveyed here is that, spiritual practices such as “Yagnas” should be performed only for “Lokhakshema” (Benefit for the whole world) and not for fulfilling selfish needs. Thus through this aspect, Vidura explains that these kinds of selfish “Rithviks” depend upon these kinds of wealthy people who are ready to shell out huge sums of money to perform spiritual practices so as to fulfill their personal and selfish needs!

“Raaja vividhamaaneshu” – Here Vidura explains that a King is dependent on those enemies who come to fight wars with him so as to prove his valor to the world! It’s evident quite from the modern day scenario too wherein we see few countries go into wars just because they wish to prove to the world that they’re extremely powerful in terms of weapons and army. Readers might be aware that we are currently witnessing a huge threat in terms of nuclear weapons. Some countries take pride in showcasing their nuclear power, while some other countries oppose such public “stunts”. Thus, there is always a Cold War existing between these two blocs of countries and they keep threatening each other by playing the “trump card” of Nuclear power! How relevant are these current day situations to what Vidura has explained thousands of years ago! Thus Vidura explains here that a king would always try and look for enemies to fight, so as to prove his worth and valour to the world! Of course I’m not saying that this practice is wrong. However, one needs to be cautious and careful in terms of analysing the strengths and weaknesses of the enemy before going in for a full-fledged war. If the king is not performing such detailed analyses before going into the war, it can be disastrous!

“Nithyam moorkeshu pandithaaha” – Here Vidura details that the success of a learned scholar (“Panditha”) lies where there are lot of fools around. In other words, if everybody had the knowledge, then where is the opportunity for the scholar to showcase his/her knowledge? Thus Vidura drives home the point that the success of a learned scholar depends upon how many people are around with him, who are devoid of the knowledge which he/she possesses! This is one reason why we see artists (musicians, dancers, etc) gain more name, fame and popularity in places where their kind of arts aren’t much in practice.

Thus Vidura has explained the six categories of people who are dependent on six of their counterparts for their immense success. We shall wait till the next episode to witness the next six! 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 Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham in Kerala, 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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