Tuesday, September 1, 2009

one wise better than hundred fools - वरमेको गुणी पुत्रो



one wise son is worthy [than a] hundred stupid ones, for a single moon destroys the darkness, not even a hundred stars [can do that].

वरमेको गुणी पुत्रो, न च मूर्खशतैरपि ।
एकश्चन्द्रस्तमो हन्ति, न च तारागणैरपि ॥


varam_eko guNI putro, na cha mUrkha-shatair_api |
ekash_chandras-tamo hanti, na cha tArA-gaNair_api || kathamukhaM-08


so, we were following the hitopadeshaH. in the preface to the book, our king sudarshana was strolling on the banks of gangA in the metropolitan city of pATaliputra (modern day paTanA), where he had heard two shlokas being recited - knowledge is the only eye and the recipe for disaster. this had set him thinking about his own princes.

among the not-born, born-and-died and the stupid for life - the first two types of children are still better, for they give you sorrow only once, but the third (stupid) gives you sorrow every step of life.[4] his is some birth which brings fame to the name of the family, else in this ever changing mortal world, many are born and die.[5]



those whose name is not counted first when enumerating the worthy, if their mother is called a mother then who is infertile?[6] one who has not obtained any fame in charity, austerity, valor, wisdom or wealth, he is nothing but mother's discharge.[7]

then this present shloka of a worthy son (child).

the focus should be on quality and not quantity.

this is also a reference to the hundred sons of DhRitarAShTra who were not on the side of dharma, right conduct, rather they were evil doers, and hence brought shame and disgrace to the kaurav clan and specially to DhRitarAShTra.

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and now the language aspects of the shloka -

varam_eko = one (ekaH -> eko) [is] worthy (varaM)
guNI = one with good traits, characteristics, qualities. (from guNa)
putro = putraH = son (or child)
na = not
cha = and
mUrkha-shatair_api = even (api) hundred (shataiH) stupid (mUrkha) [ones]
shataiH + api = shatairapi

ekash_chandras-tamo hanti = one (ekaH) moon (chandraH) kills (hanti) darkness (tamaH)
ekaH + chandraH + tamaH hanti

na = not
cha = and
tArA-gaNair_api = even (api) by group (gaNaiH) of stars (tArA)

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1 comment:

Kunal Krishna said...

गुणी = wise is not an apt TRANSLATION according to me for it demands one to be a born wise. On the contrary I think other characteristics like how politely one talks, behaves etc. is of much worth after one finds a descent job for living

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