Episode # 165 – “A friend in need is a friend indeed!” – Vidura’s beautiful explanation!!!


In the previous episode we had started yet another important discussion of Vidura to King Dhirdiraashtra about how each item in this world gets exposed with its true colour. Yesterday we had seen that gold exposes its true colour when we heat it to extremely high temperatures. If we do so, we can understand and identify the actual level of purity of gold that is present in the ornaments that we wear. Secondly, a human being’s attitude is exposed to the world by the actions that he/she performs. If a person performs good activities, he is hailed to be a good person and if the actions are bad, he gets exposed right royally at some point in time. Thirdly, a person who is hailed as a “Saadhu” would be exposed if he opens his mouth and talks for a few minutes! If he talks sense and in a very limited manner, he is accepted as a real “Saadhu” and on the contrary if he’s going to open his mouth and utter crappy words and language, his image gets severely dented. This is why we always keep saying that it is better to remain silent rather than unwantedly opening our mouths and getting exposed by ourselves!

Now moving on further, Vidura says “Sooraha bhayeshu” – A brave person’s behavior when he is put into a situation that would automatically induce a fear! By nature, some people might be extremely courageous and brave to face any situation. Some of them atleast project themselves that way! J Now if we’ve to put them in a situation that would automatically induce great fear, this would expose their stance here – If he is really brave and courageous, he would try and come out of the situation somehow through some means. Whereas if he was “acting” as if he was brave and courageous, would panic and bog down – Thus he gets exposed for the lie that he has been propagating so far!

Next, Vidura explains “Artha krithseshu dheeraha” – One more way to test if a person is brave or not – In other words, when would a person’s timidness be exposed to the world? The real test is when that person is left in the middle of nowehere without food, water or even a single penny of money in his pocket. At this situation, if he still has the courage within himself to manage it, his real braveness is exposed to the world! Conversly, if the person panics and bogs down during this situation by giving up completely, he is an absolute timid person and this nature of him gets exposed easily!

This can be interpreted to the current lifestyle of people in this way – If a person, because of whatsoever reason had borrowed enormous amounts of money before as debts from many other people and if he takes it upon himself to work hard and repay all the debts that he had taken, without even a single penny as a balance, such person is hailed as an extremely confident and a courageous person. Of course in the modern day we see several people like that who are very sincere and honest in their approach towards work and family, who take greater responsibilities for all what happens within the family. These persons would easily stand out of the crowd in terms of their hard work, honesty and sincerety. But on the other side of the spectrum, today we see many people – especially businessmen who are over-ambitious in the beginning, get enormous amounts of loans from a consortium of banks, do not use that money in the proper channel to run their business profitably, and finally take out all that bank money and run away from India to settle in London or wherever in the world where they cannot be touched! We’ve seen this happening in the recent years too! However if a person who is taking up this failure of business upon himself and declare to the world that I would not run out of the country anywhere, I shall re-structure my business in a better way so as to earn profits, and subsequently re-settle all the loans that the banks had lended him, would be hailed by the world as a real successful businessman and a professionally ethical person. If this is the case, even the lenders who had lent enormous money as debts, would get that confidence that their money is safe in this person’s hands. It is only when this businessman acts in a dishonest way of swindling all the money and flying abroad secretly, will all problems commence.

Thus a person can be judged for his courage and confidence only if he’s left with no money to even manage himself.

Finally, Vidura says “Krishvesvaapatsu suhrudascha arayascha!” Here he says that I as a person would come to know about another person (whether he/she is good or bad) only during a time when I’m going through a problem. If during tough times a person comes unconditionally to render help and support, he/she can be rated as a true friend. If it is in such a way that a so-called friend leaves me alone and deserts me during a crisis situation, we would come to know his/her true color as the worst enemy! This is what we explain with the modern day proverb in English – “A friend in need is a friend indeed!” Nowadays people weigh everything in life only in terms of money and nothing else. For instance if I’m from a wealthy family, many people would come behind me like “friends” all the time. They would voluntarily come up to me and talk, go out with me for movies, have fun, etc. Whereas tomorrow for whatsoever reason, all my money gets vanished away, how many of these same “friends” would come up to me and talk? Many of them would just turn their back and walk away when we’re in a crisis! Not many people would have the heart to come to us and offer unconditional help and support.

This is exactly what Vidura is explaining here. So for today let us introspect these above-mentioned points within ourself. Let us be careful in understanding the real nature of people around us while we move with them. We shall wait till the next episode to explore more of Vidura’s advice! 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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