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Thirukkural-On Virtue-Elimination Of Desire-Kural 361

Avaaenpa ellaa uyirkkumen nyaanrum

Thavaa ap pirappeenum vithu

Desire is for all beings, the seed out of which,

Is born the endless cycle of birth and death.

Desire is something which is innate in all beings and it is out of this desire that the cycle of birth and death emanates. The absence of desire, or detachment, is recognized as a basic virtue in the spiritual endeavour of all human beings. This has sanction in the Bhagavad Gita and is enjoined therein as 'Karmayoga" – absolute detachment in the performance of one"s duty (Bhagavad Gita 8,9 ): 'When obligatory work is performed…..leaving attachment and fruit, such relinquishment is regarded as Sattvika". This leads to realization of Self and God and to ultimate release.

Religion apart, looking at things rationally, 'contentment is the greatest wealth" even according to Socrates. This is why kalladanar spoke of the poet as,

“Samayak kanakkar madhivazhi kooraadhu

Ulakiyal koorip porulithu enra valluvan"

He did not prescribe the religious paths propounded by the various leaders of religion to attain a state of virtue or release from bondage; he worked out his own rational concept and relevant paths for achieving the same ends. We might call it the path of universal truth or rational religion.

Read more about: bhagavad gita desires
Story first published: Monday, March 29, 2010, 11:44 [IST]
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