Monday, April 19, 2010

stay in the present - गते शोको न कर्तव्यो


 
Past is not worth mourning. Don't worry for the future. 
The wise advise [us] to live by the present time. 
 
गते शोको न कर्तव्यो भविष्यं नैव चिन्तयेत् ।
वर्तमानेन कालेन वर्तयन्ति विचक्षणाः ॥

gate shoko na kartavyo bhaviShyaM naiva chintayet |
vartamAnena kAlena vartayanti vichakShaNAH ||

gate śoko na kartavyo bhaviṣyaṃ naiva cintayet ।
vartamānena kālena vartayanti vicakṣaṇāḥ ॥


The past is gone, you can do nothing about it but to learn from it. A grieving period is psychologically understood, but beyond that mourning for the past is only counter-productive. Mourning can be taken to various degrees, worrying, missing, depressed, to a stage when you can't even function normally.

By mourning, you can't change the past.

The future, is not yet here, so what can you do by worrying? What you do is only in the present. what you can do for the future is to prepare for it. That can only happen in the present. And worrying surely doesn't help, just like mourning doesn't help.

By worrying, you can't avoid the future.

The clearheaded (vichakShaNaH), resides in the present, focuses in the present, where actions are performed. They don't day-dream in the future. Sure they see visions of the future and strive to make it better, but not just romanticizing the future or grieving for the past.

This is a practical gem by AchArya chANakya.

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And now the language aspects of the shloka -

gate = गते = in that which is gone
gam = (root verb) to go
gataH = gone, past, as in gata-kAle = in the past (time that is gone)
-e suffix denote 'in'

shoko = शोको = shokaH (shoko due to visarga sandhi) = mourning, mourn, grief

na = न = not

kartavyo = कर्तव्यो = from kartavyaH, duty, that which should be done
(kartavyo due to visarga sandhi)

bhaviShyaM = भविष्यं = future, about/to future

naiva = नैव = na + eva = not also

chintayet = चिन्तयेत् = should worry

vartamAnena = वर्तमानेन = in present
vartamAna = present
-ena suffix for by, as instrument to do

kAlena = कालेन = by time
i.e. by present time

vartayanti = वर्तयन्ति = cause/inspire/(advice) to be
vRit root meaning 'to be, present'
vartati = is present, lives
vartayati = inspires to be, causes to be, advises to be
vartayanti = plural of vartayati
so, wise people advice you to be in present

vichakShaNAH = विचक्षणाः = clearheaded
root chakShuH = eyes.
vi- prefix = special
those with special vision, clear vision, clarity of thought

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(c) shashikant joshi । शशिकांत जोशी । ॐ सर्वे भवन्तु सुखिनः ।
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2 comments:

rlp said...

THanks for sharing such a nice poem and its meaning.

Prits Rajput said...

Thank you for sharing this worth reading shloka.Very much applicable in everybody's life.
Ritarani Dubey,
Sambalpur,
Odisha

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