The previous episode marked a very important contemporary topic of discussion wherein we witnessed the present-day ill-effects of selling certain products in exchange for money, which Vidura had warned against! With special focus on food products, we saw how many modern-day companies make enormous profits by compromising the basic safety parameters while manufacturing food items that are so-called “Ready-to-eat”. We witnessed instances that were in the news recently wherein, it was found that adequate cleanliness parameters were found wanting in certain food manufacturing companies, and we can imagine the plight of those people who regularly consume these food items every day! Hence the most important point to focus in today’s world is that, ethics is very important and companies of any domain should not forget that people come to them with a basic amount of trust. If we start playing with people’s trust, it’s going to be a great disgrace to the society at large, wherein we would end up seeing people suffering with either physical or mental ailments of some sorts. Moreover, as companies, we would also unnecessarily entangle ourselves into ethical and legal issues, which in today’s world are very difficult to tackle! Of course I do understand the limitation from the people’s side that “Barter trading” of food items are no more possible in the world and we’re left at the mercy of purchasing food items for money!
Now moving forward, Vidura is going to explain yet another important aspect of “Dharma”, wherein he says that we should respect women in a very high manner and treat them well so that they’re happy and satisfied! Vidura explains thus:
“Aneershu guptadhaarasya samvibhaageeh priyam vadaha!”
Here Vidura explains the sweet characteristics of a woman – She is an epitome of patience! She always talks in a pleasing manner. She always talks good and pleasing words. She is an embodiment of mercy. Hence given all these characteristics, it is the duty of every man in this world to respect the woman without any blemish.
We might wonder why Vidura is stressing this point again and again. There were many instances in the previous “Adhyaayas” wherein Vidura has spoken about this at length, but here too he re invokes this point for discussion. Perhaps Vidura knows that King Dhirdiraashtra doesn’t seem to realize his folly at all even after repeatedly advising him! Maybe Vidura would have thought that the only way to make King Dhirdiraashtra understand “Dharma” is to repeatedly reinforce it “Adhyaaya” after “Adhyaaya” so that atleast at some point in time it might hit his head! This is the same problem with us too – This is why our parents, grandparents, etc. try to advise us repeatedly with the “Dharma” so that at some point in time, we would be able to understand the significance of it. If complex points pertaining to “Dharma” are just said once and left, many a times we would not be in a position to accept those points and we would not care to ponder over those important points at all! Ultimately the “Dharma” would be forgotten forever. It is only to prevent this from happening, our great Maharishis and ancestors have taken pains to repeatedly reinforce the “Dharma” to all of us, by employing different strategies – Stories, advice, projections, etc. so that it reaches us clearly!
Here too thus, Vidura reinvokes the point on why should women be respected! This is because of Duryodhana’s atrocious act of insulting Draupati (Wife of the Paandavas) in the public forum where the entire Hastinapura kingdom had assembled. More than Duryodhana and his brothers, the onus of the fault lies on the shoulders of seniors such as King Dhirdiraashtra himself, Bhishmachaarya, Dhronaachaarya, Sahuni, etc. because when Duchhaasana was publicly insulting Draupati by pulling off her saree, nobody opened their mouths in protest to the crime! Every single person was a mute spectator to the crime that was happening, in-spite of Draupati screaming for help! Finally when Draupati called Bhagawan Krishna for help, it was Bhagawan who came at the right time to save her from being insulted further! By doing all this, Vidura slams King Dhirdiraashtra that he and his sons have earned the anger and frustration of Bhagawan Krishna more than anybody else, and that, Bhagawan is giving them a long rope, which unfortunately the entire Kaurava clan is using that to hang themselves!
Thus Vidura takes another opportunity to take heavy toll on King Dhirdiraashtra with this sloka to re-iterate the point that he and his sons have made the blunder of their life by insulting the woman by name Draupati. Even after this, will King Dhirdiraashtra realize his folly and repent for his mistake? Will King Dhirdiraashtra mend his and his sons’ ways so as to prevent any further disasters from coming through? Time should give the answer! We shall wait till the next episode to witness Vidura’s next important point of discussion! Stay tuned! 🙂