Keeping good company

“… it is not proper to live with persons who have no sense of decency or decorum. The wise will not keep company with those who speak ill of their family.”

Devayani speaks about the behaviour of Sarmishta the daughter of king Vrishaparva who by her rude actions had disrespected her father Sukracharya.

(Mahabharata by C. Rajagopalachari – p.34)

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More so now than ever

“You are enchanting – more so now than ever, flushed as you are with anger.”

Kacha says this to Devayani while declining her proposal for marriage, for he believes that by bringing him back to life, Sukracharya is now his parent and it is against nature for a brother to wed his own sister.

(Mahabharata by C. Rajagopalachari – p.31)

Of wine and virtue

“Virtue will desert the man who through lack of wisdom drinks wine. He will be an object of scorn to all. This is my message to humanity, which should be regarded as an imperative scriptural injunction.”

The Asuras would have killed Sukracharya’s disciple Kacha, burnt his body and mixed his ashes in wine and offered it to Sukracharya, in an attempt to dissuade Sukracharya from reviving Kacha from death. Sukracharya angry at the deceit played upon him by the Asuras, utters the above words.

(Mahabharata by C. Rajagopalachari – p.30)

You had better be running!

lionhunt_diaz_ts

“Every morning in Africa, a gazelle wakes up.
It knows that it must run faster than the fastest lion,
Or it will be killed”

“Every morning in Africa, a lion wakes up.
It knows it must outrun the slowest gazelle
Or it will starve to death”

It does not matter whether you are a gazelle or a lion,
When the sun comes up in the morning,
You had better be running!

– Anonymous

Save some for us

It is very unfortunate that the ever-increasing population is depleting our already diminishing natural resources. We make such a hue and cry about every special day that comes and goes. Be it the Children’s day, the Valentine’s Day, the Mother’s Day, and so on. We spend lavishly on our loved ones; all deserving – no qualms there. However, when it is the World Environment day, it just passes with not a single voice raised.

I remember when we were kids, we celebrated days like the Vanamahotsava, the Environment day with real enthusiasm. It was more of a moral responsibility for us at that time. I wonder where all that enthusiasm has gone. Have we grown so indifferent to celebrate those little things in life? Have we become so busy that we cannot take time off to thank Mother Earth?

I very recently completed reading a book – “The Grand Design” by Stephen Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow – which talks about how the universe was created and how extremely conducive the Earth is to harbour life. The book says that if the orbital eccentricity of Earth’s revolution around the sun was off even as little as 1%, life would not have existed on earth. Further, if Earth was even a few thousand kilometres away from sun, the temperature difference would be so large that in summer all the water would evaporate and in winter it would all get frozen! Earth is such a carefully crafted jewel that bears life – so called intelligent life. We are in fact, lucky to exist let alone survive and thrive at this magnitude.

Every day, we see trees felled in the name of modernization; forests cleared out to satisfy the needs of the ever-growing population; fertile land consumed by large manufacturing units! And everybody is torn apart trying to choose between nature and technology. Is there really a need to choose between the two? Cannot preservation of nature and technological advancements happen hand-in-hand?

Technology should evolve to protect nature; not exploit it. It is up to us – the intelligent life forms – to innovate and invent not only user-friendly technology but also technology which is nature-friendly.

P.S.: The title “Save some for us” was a slogan for a model-making competition which I had taken part in my school days. The theme of the competition was preserving the natural habitat for the wild and endangered animals and stop over use and over exploitation by man.