133 Beautiful Quotations of Playwright Bhasa – Part 1


133 Beautiful Quotations (Subhashitas) of Playwright Bhasa – Part 1
Post No. 1050; Dated 18th May 2014

(Earlier on 18th April 2014, I posted under the title “Beautiful quotations from a Great Playwright”; Post No. 987. Following post is more comprehensive and 133 quotations are arranged subject wise.)

Bhasa was one of the greatest playwrights of India. Even Kalidasa, the greatest playwright and poet of India praised him. He has written 13 Sanskrit dramas and Svapna vasavadatta is his best. He lived during the period of Nanda dynasty around fifth century BCE.

Following are his thirteen dramas of Bhasa: Abhiseka Nataka, Avi maraca, Urubhanga, Karnabhara, Carudatta, Duta Katotkaca, Duta Vakya, Panca Ratra, Pratijna Yugandharayana, Pratima Nataka, Bala Carita, Madhyama or Haidimba Vaidagya and Svapna Vasavadatta.

In all these plays the poet has employed nearly 230 characters, male and female, besides many others that are only mentioned.

There are 23 different metres and the total number of verses is 1092. There are thirteen Prakrit verses in these plays in six different metres. His dramas are in Sanskrit prose.

Following quotations (Wise Sayings) are compiled by A S Panchapakesa Ayyar in his book on Bhasa published in 1957. When we know that all these were said 2400 years ago, we admire it more. This is our age old Sanskrit Wisdom:–

Picture of Sanskrit drama in Russia.

1.God owns everything in the universe, but keeps nothing for himself; He is the supreme renouncer.
2.God is our soul refuge, there is no other refuge. He is the plot, the prologue and the epilogue of the ceaseless drama of the universe and the stage manager too. His scenes are ever changing in the background of Eternity.
3.Do everything to please Him and nothing to please the thousand tongued world.
4.First rate men please God; second rate men please the world; third rate men please neither.
5.God’s best form is that of the Babe; the next best is that of the Beloved; and the next best is that of the Friend. We need not bother about His other forms.
6.God is seen constantly by the wise and never by fools.
7.He is the meanest and most ungrateful of men who will not salute God, who has given him everything, including his life.
8.Virtue enables us to shed our illusion by His Grace; Vice keeps the veil tighter and tighter.
9.We should all realise that the body will die one day, but the soul never, and act accordingly.
10.Effort alone is your concern; leave the result to Him.

kalidasa sakuntala
Picture of Kalidasa’s Sakuntala drama.

11.When the moon rises, the stars are there too.
12.Kingship never goes a begging.
13.The king must rule or abdicate.
14.A just king makes the deer sleep in peace in the midst of tigers and lions.
15.A ruler must go by the laws, eternal and manmade.
16.A king should honour the sages, eradicate poverty, and protect his people and prefer their welfare to his.
17.A king should guard his life carefully in peace but risk his life fearlessly in war.
18.A palace garden becomes a bed of weeds when the king is dethroned.
19.Money can work wonders in palaces and ministries.
20.There are kings among men, and demons among kings.
21.A minister without a spirit of sacrifice is a disgrace to himself and the country.
22.Death has no terrors for him who has discharged all his duties.

23.To live on braving dangers and troubles for the sake of others is far better than to commit suicide to escape troubles and worries for oneself.
24.When we are dead, we cannot thin or speak or act, So we must make the most of life.
25.He is a fool who will sell his liberty for reaches.

skt drama

26.Beauty captivates the minds of one and all, whether it is physical, mental or spiritual beauty.
27.The ideal to be aimed at is Beauty in Woman, Bravery in Man, Honesty in Both.
28.Beauty is its own adornment; but adorned beauty looks even better.

29.A loveless army is useless in war as a loveless wife at home
30.War is a gamble with human lives at stake
31.The victor by force of arms will one day become the vanquished by arms.
32.A brave man requires only his courage and two arms to fight any foe.
33.A warrior’s fame is judged by what his enemies say of him.
34.Words do not go too far in a fight.

35.By waxing of mutual enmity, the race perishes and becomes but a name.
36.The enmity of elders should not extend to children.
37.With the signing of peace between warring nations, the cruel deeds of both the sides in war are forgotten.

Picture of Kalamandalm Koodiyattam

38.Fraud will be met by fraud, whatever the moralists say.
39.So long as life lasts, Hope lasts.
40.Troubles come in shoals.
41.He who handcuffs others everyday will feel it most when he is himself handcuffed one day.
42. A prisoner feels humiliated whether he is well treated or ill-treated
43.The valour of a robber disappears when he is arrested.
44.A man’s guilt makes him fear detection at any time.
45.Drinks make a poor wretch forget his worries for a time.
46.Traders and workers operate during the day; lovers and burglars during the night.
47.The snatching arms of a robber are a better sight than the folded arms of servility of a beggar.
48.Death comes to the wicked suddenly and unexpectedly.
49.Service rendered to a rascal is wasted like the eyes in pitch darkness or like books lent to the blind.
50.There may be assemblies of various kinds, for instance, of learned men in the Hall of a University and of rogues in the Rogues’ Hall.
51.Court news is first known in the market place, and then alone to the ministers and people.
52.A merchant robs his customers in daylight while the burglar robs his customers only at nights.
53.The rich man avoids a beggar as much as he avoids a robber.
54.Policemen discover a crime only after others have discovered it for them.
55.Clothed with brief authority, petty official of government want to display it insolently on the people.
56.A magician enters the society of the learned like a well dressed rogue the company of householders.

skt keith

57.Love comes as easily to a man in rags as to a kng on his throne. The fire of love is peculiar; it burns fiercer in the absence of the loved one. Marriages are of five kinds, namely, union of souls, union of minds, union of bodies, union of lusts and union of things.
58.Fate settles marriages.
59.Marriages are best arranged with many doors open.
60.A happy marriage makes the earth a heaven, and an unhappy marriage makes the earth hell itself.
61.An unmarried daughter of marriageable age is a sure sign of her mother’s defeat.
62.A rebellious wife unhappily married, brings down the reputation of her parent’s house and her husband’s house as a river in flood destroys both the banks.
63.Beauty makes for the buds and blossoms of marriage; but it is duty which keeps the roots firm.
64.A bridegroom must be handsome and of a noble family and must have a better heart; but, above all, he must be able to maintain and protect his wife.
65.A man is indeed blessed when he has a devoted wife who will follow him to the ends of the world, and stick to him whatever his fortune.
66.No honest man should love a woman without an intention to marry her.
67.However careful is the choice in a marriage, a lot depends on fate.
68.A woman of exemplary chastity is a priceless asset.


69.A rake is a beast in human form.
70.A rake’s lust burns like a bit of old leather fallen on fire.
71.Even a cad feels a pang of regret at doing injustice to his virtuous wife.
72.A true wife feels lonely when her husband is not by her side.
73.We should make the most of the charming period of our youth.
74.Premature widowhood is like a flower nipped in the bud.
75.Celestial nymphs can never give the same satisfaction as human maidens.

Contact swami_48@yahoo.com

(Part two contains quotations on Dharma, Service, Belly, Prosperity, Sick man and Medicine, Hermitages and Sages, Astrology, Fate, Good and Bad People, Leadership, Training etc.)

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