Fate decides your Wealth, say Shakespeare, Bhartruhari and Valluvar (Post No.5810)

Written by London Swaminathan
Date: 21 December 2018
GMT Time uploaded in London – 18-07
Post No. 5810

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Fate decides your Wealth, say Shakespeare, Bhartruhari and Valluvar (Post No.5810)

Bhartruhari and Tamil poet Valluvar agree on several points in this sloka of Niti Sataka.

1.A person’s wealth is decided by his fate

2.Fate is written by Brahma, Hindu God of Creation on one’s head or forehead.

3.Saint Vidyaranya’s story shows that Harihara and Bhukka got it even whenthey were in arid land. But Saint Vidyaranya couldn’tget in the present birth (Read the story given below)

4.Valluvar explains it more clearly. One needs effort to get wealth. Inspiration and perspiration give wealth. But that comes only when your Good Karma (Punya done in one’s previous birth) acts. If you have bad Karma (papa), then laziness will engulf you.

44. Whatever fate has written on the forehead of each,

that shall he obtain, whether it be poverty or riches.

His abode may be the desert, but he shall gain no more if

he live even on Mount Meru. Let your mind be constant.

Do not be miserable through envy of the rich. The

pitcher takes up the same quantity of water whether it be

from the well or the ocean.

यद्धात्रा निजभालपट्टलिखितं स्तोकं महद्वा धनं
तत्प्राप्नोति मरुस्थले‌உपि नितरां मेरौ ततो नाधिकम् ।
तद्धीरो भव वित्तवत्सु कृपणां वृत्तिं वृथा सा कृथाः
कूपे पश्य पयोनिधावपि घटो गृह्णाति तुल्यं जलम् ॥ Niti Sataka 1.44 ॥

Look at the following couplets: –

Tirukkural 371, 377, 380

Except as ordained by the Lord, who measures out each man’s meet

Even the millionaire cannot enjoy his hoards -377

Even a millionaire cannot enjoy his wealth except as ordained by Fate. This is exactly what Shakespeare meant when he said in Hamlet,

There is a Divinity that shapes our ends

Rough-hew them how we will– Hamlet

Another couplet

The constructive industry that produces wealth, and the destructive indolence

That brings about adversity in life ,are both the outcome of fate-371

The last couplet of the chapter on fate is as follows,

What is more potent than Fate? It forestalls every expedient one may resort to for averting it- 380

Another translation of the same couplet

Destiny is supreme, because its intended consummation will surely come about

Even if planned efforts are made to overcome it-380

STORY:- Vidyaranya found Golden Treasure!

Kanchi Shankaracharya (1894-1994 Paramacharya) in his Madras Discourses (1957-1959) gives the story of Vidyaranya’s discovery of gold and using it for establishing Vijayanagara Empire. Born as Madhava in a village in Karnataka he prayed to Goddess Mahalakshmi, Goddess of Wealth, for enormous amount of wealth. Lakshmi appeared before him and told him that he can’t enjoy wealth in this birth but it was possible for him to get it in the next birth. An idea flashed in his mind immediately. He told Goddess Lakshmi that he would take Sanyas ( Renunciation) which is considered a ‘second birth’ for a Hindu. Lakshmi agreed and gave him tons of gold. As soon as he saw rocks of gold and hills of gold he wept loudly. He knew that sanyas (renunciation ) means no attachment to anything worldly. “Oh My God, What Have I done? How can I touch gold when I have become a Sanyasi (an ascetic)”, he cried. Goddess Lakshmi disappeared while he was wondering what to do next.

At that time of history in 14th century AD, Muslim forces invaded South India and destroyed most of the temples along its routes. Madhava, who was later known as Vidyaranya, called two goatherds Harihara and Bhukka and asked them to build a city at the chosen place at the appointed auspicious time. Both of them did it and utilised the entire gold to establish a mighty and wealthy Hindu empire—later known as Vijaya Nagara Samrajya.

There is another story about Sri Vidyaranya, who later became Jagadguru of Sringeri Mutt, about making gold shower in the lands of Vijayanagara Empire. When there was a draught, Harihara and Bhukka approached Vidyaranya swami for help. He prayed to goddess Lakshmi again and there was a shower of gold in the capital city.

Water pot simile

Another interesting information in this sloka is Bhartruhari’s simile of water pot in in the ocean; This is followed by Tamil poetess Avvaiyar as well. Avvaiyar lived a few centuries after Bhartruhari. Another Avvaiyar lived before him in Sangam Age.

“Though you dip the measure/pitcher deep in the deep sea water, it will not contain four measures. O Maid ! Though riches and husband are choice, the happiness of the couple hangs on fate or destiny”—Muthurai by Poetess Avvaiyar

Tag- water pitcher, Wealth,Fate, Valluvar, Bhartruhari


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