Nunmaan nulaipulam illaan elilnalam
Manmaan punaipaavai yatru.
Where the human intellect is not developed by incisive learning
Such a man would be only a colourfully-painted clay doll.
The apparent grandeur of a man"s personality on the outside is no measure of his intellect, which has to be cultivated by systematic learning. After all, even well-moulded and colourfully painted clay images present a grand appearance.
Learning alone makes all the difference. The expression of Valluvar in just four words,' Nunman nulaipulam' is remarkably telling. As Rajaji explains, the office of learning is to make the mind, 'pulan' penetrating 'nun' lofty 'maan' and rich with information 'nulai'
One is reminded in this context of the four lines of Naladiar as follows:
“Kunji azakum kodundhaanaik koatazakum
manjal azakum azakalla-Nenjathu
Nallamyaam yennum naduvu nilaimaiyaal
kalvi azahe azahu"
Reinforcing this is the quotation form Eladhi ditec by K V J in his Research edition of Thirukural whose effective last line is:
“Yenoadu yeluthin vanape vanapu" (Yelaathi, 74)