The Naladiyar

The Indian Antiquary, A Journal Of Oriental Research

18,838 words

The Naladiyar is one of the few original works we have in Tamil. It contains altogether forty chapters, of ten stanzas each, on moral subjects....

Chapter 8 - Patience

1. Good lord of the cool hills festooned with springs! speak not at all with a fool. If a fool speak, he will speak only to injure you. To slip away from him, and to avoid him by any means in your power, is good.

2. When inferiors speak improper words, the patient hearing these words is patience indeed. The earth, surrounded with swelling waves, will not regard impatient behaviour as praiseworthy, but baseness only.

3. Will the hard words uttered (in reproof) by friends be more evil than the sweet words of strangers speaking with joy, O lord of the cool shore of the mighty ocean, where the beautiful winged insects turn over all the flowers, if they get men who understand the consequence thereof?

4. Knowing what ought to be known, and submitting thereunto, fearing what ought to be feared, performing every duty so as to satisfy the world, and living in the enjoyment of pleasure according to their means; they who are thus disposed never experienoe the evils of life.

5. When two persons are friends, mixing without variance, should there be misconduct on the part of one, let the other be patient, as far as he can bear it. If he cannot take it patiently, let him not speak evil, but withdraw to a distance.

6. Though another do one evil, if he say, Well, let it pass, and blame himself, it is good: To give up intimate associates, O lord of the forests! is hard even to brutes.

7. O king of the fair hills abounding with hollow-sounding streams! does not close intimacy with the great arise from the idea that they forgive the grievous faults that are committed against them? Will friends be wanting to them who do what is good?

8. Those who are gifted with patience, and who are not so rash as to destroy themselves though withered and famished with hunger, will not declare their misery to those who love them not. They will make it known only to those who have the power to help them.

9. Let pleasure alone, when thou canst enjoy it, if disgrace attends it, O Lord of the hill country abounding in waters! though pleasure only be constantly regarded, it is preferable to enjoy it in a harmless way.

10. Although he himself be ruined, let not a man think of injuring the worthy; let him not eat with whom he should not eat, even though the flesh of his body waste away; let him not speak words intermingled with falsehood, although he get the whole world canopied by the heavens for his reward.

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