Monday, October 25, 2010

worrying ruins everything - संतापाद्भ्रश्यते रूपं

If there is one thing in abundance in the world, beyond poverty, corruption and bad politics, it is our worries. Maybe the first three are causing it :). Like the poverty of character, worries are the disease of the mind that eat into our core.

We may think worries are a comparatively modern phenomenon with a fast life, more pressure, uncertain times etc. and it was great in the past, it is not so. Of course, there were and are carefree and worry-free people always, but we are talking about the middle of the curve people. In 'mahAbhArata' महाभारत, when 'yakSha' यक्ष, the spirit of the lake, asks 'yudhiShThira' युधिष्ठिर - what is more [common] than the grass?' he answers - 'Our worries.'

And in the same epic, when the wise minister 'vidura' विदुर is advising the emperor 'dhRitarAShTra' धृतराष्ट्र he says that 'Do the right thing, the just thing, and you will have nothing to worry. For worrying destroys everything.'



Too much worrying never helped anything. If it were so, I would have solved the world hunger decades ago!

Physically and psychologically, worries eat away into our very being. We are never smiling when we are worried, so instantly it robs our beauty away from us. In the long run, it causes loss of sleep which leads to those puffy eyes and bad skin. It leads to loss of beauty of the form. After all, they call it a beauty-'sleep' for a reason!

Worry takes away appetite and that leads to a bad health, weak body. The spurts of binging leads further deterioration of health.

Too much worrying blinds our thinking, and the ability to make proper decision. We get biased and one-tracked and make silliest of mistakes when we worry too much. Such decisions only worsen the situation, leading to more worries.

And all this leads up to some real diseases as well, not just of the thought but of the body. Depression, lack of immunity, headaches, ulcers - what not.

So, plan, be concerned, but not worried. Not excessively worried to the point that it is santApa संताप - full mental torture!

Here is what 'vidura' विदुर says to the emperor:

संतापाद्भ्रश्यते रूपं, संतापाद्भ्रश्यते बलम् |
संतापाद्भ्रश्यते ज्ञानं, संतापाद्व्याधिमृच्छति || (4-44)

santApAd_bhrashyate rUpam, santApAd_bhrashyate balam |
santApAd_bhrashyate GYaanam, santApAd_vyAdhim_Richchhati ||

Beauty is ruined because of (from) worrying, strength is ruined because of worrying. [Proper] Thinking is ruined because of worrying, because of worrying one gets disease.

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and now the language aspects of the shloka -

santApAd संतापाद् = from, because of santApa संताप
tap तप् = to heat up
tApa ताप = heat, suffering, fever. it is used in both its literal and figurative meanings.
tapasyA तपस्या = that which gives heat, suffering, a penance. austerity of the mind and body.
saMyak सम्यक् + tApa ताप = santApa संताप = full heat, total suffering, worrying,
santApAt संतापात् = from santApa, because of santApa
santApAd संतापाद् - the last t त् changes to d द् due to sandhi.


bhrashyate भ्रश्यते = declines, falls. (passive voice)
from bhraMsh भ्रंश् root which means to decline, fall.
from this there are many related words like -
bhraShTa भ्रष्ट = corrupt[ed]
apa-bhraMsha अपभ्रंश = the new languages that resulted from the 'decline' of sanskrit as a perfected language.

when used as intransitive verb (AtmanepadI आत्मनेपदी i.e. the result is on oneself, one falls, declines) then the verb goes as 'bhraMshate' (present tense, singular)
when used as a transitive verb (parasmaipadI परस्मैपदी , result on others) the verb goes as bhrashyati (present tense, singular)

rUpam रूपम् = form, beauty.

balam बलम् = strength

GYaanam ज्ञानम् = knowledge, thinking, intelligence

vyAdhim व्याधिम् = disease

Richchhati ऋच्छति = [one] goes to, gets
(one goes to ... the state of being ill)

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