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The good to others kindness show, And from them no return exact; The best and greatest men, they know, Thus ever nobly love to act.*
Entangled in a hundred worldly snares, Self-seeking men, by ignorance deluded, Strive by unrighteous means to pile up riches. Then, in their self-complacency, they say, ?This acquisition I have made to-day, That will I gain to-morrow, so much pelf Is hoarded up already, so much more Remains that I have yet to treasure up. This enemy I have destroyed, him also, And others in their turn, I will despatch. I am a lord; I will enjoy myself; I?m wealthy, noble, strong, successful, happy; I?m absolutely perfect; no one else In all the world can be compared to me. Now will I offer up a sacrifice, Give gifts with lavish hand, and be triumphant.? Such men, befooled by endless vain conceits, Caught in the meshes of the world?s illusion, Immersed in sensuality, descend Down to the foulest hell of unclean spirits.*
A wound inflicted by arrows heals, a wood cut down by an axe grows, but harsh words are hateful?a wound inflicted by them does not heal. Arrows of different sorts can be extracted from the body, but a word-dart cannot be drawn out, for it is seated in the heart.
Just as the track of birds that cleave the air Is not discovered, nor yet the path of fish That skim the water, so the course of those Who do good actions is not always seen.
Death comes, and makes a man his prey, A man whose powers are yet unspent; Like one on gathering flowers intent, Whose thoughts are turned another way. Begin betimes to practise good, Lest fate surprise thee unawares Amid thy round of schemes and cares; To-morrow?s task to-day conclude.*
Of what avail is the praise or censure of the vulgar, who make a useless noise like a senseless crow in a forest?
Heaven?s gate is narrow and minute,* It cannot be perceived by foolish men, Blinded by vain illusions of the world. E?en the clear-sighted, who discern the way And seek to enter, find the portal barred And hard to be unlocked. Its massive bolts Are pride and passion, avarice and lust.
To abstain from speaking is regarded as very difficult. It is not possible to say much that is valuable and striking.*
A man should never despise himself, for brilliant success never attends on the man who is contemned by himself.
Rich presents, though profusely given, Are not so dear to righteous Heaven As gifts by honest gains supplied, Though small, which faith hath sanctified.
She is a wife who is notable in her house; she is a wife who beareth children; she is a wife whose husband is as her life; she is a wife who is obedient to her lord. The wife is half the man; a wife is man?s dearest friend; a wife is the source of his religion, his worldly profit, and his love. He who hath a wife maketh offerings in his house. Those who have wives are blest with good fortune. Wives are friends, who, by their kind and gentle speech, soothe you in your retirement. In your distresses they are as mothers, and they are refreshment to those who are travellers in the rugged paths of life.
An evil-minded man is quick to see His neighbour's faults, though small as mustard seed; But when he turns his eyes towards his own, Though large as bilva fruit, he none descries.
In youth a man is deluded by other ideas than those which delude him in middle life, and again in his decay he embraces other ideas.
Such deeds as thou with fear and grief Wouldst, on a sick-bed laid, recall, In youth and health eschew them all, Remembering life is frail and brief.
Those men are wise who do not desire the unattainable, who do not love to mourn over what is lost, and are not overwhelmed by calamities.
?Tis not for gain, for fame, from fear That righteous men injustice shun, And virtuous men hold virtue dear: An inward voice they seem to hear, Which tells them duty must be done.
Let none with scorn a suppliant meet, Or from the door untended spurn A dog; an outcast kindly treat; And so thou shalt be blest in turn.
Repeated sin destroys the understanding And he whose reason is impaired repeats His sins. The constant practising of virtue Strengthens the mental faculties, and he Whose judgment stronger grows acts always right.
Good words, good deeds, and beautiful expressions A wise man ever culls from every quarter, E?en as a gleaner gathers ears of corn.