Written by London Swaminathan 


Date: 9 JANUARY 2018


Time uploaded in London-8-09 AM




Post No. 4598

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources such as Facebook friends, Books, Google and newspapers; thanks.



Don’t Walk In between Two Brahmins- Chanakya’s Advice; Tamils Agree!


Chanakya, the genius of ancient India, gives some strange advice. But It is found in later Tamil literature as well. Chanakya alias Kautilya lived 2300 years ago.


Here is the sloka/verse:

One should not walk in between two Brahmins, a Brahmin and fire, husband and wife, master and servant, the plough and the bull


Viprayorvipravahnyoho swamibhtyayoho

antarena nagantavyam halasya vrushabhasya ca

Chanakya Niti, Chapter 7,verse 5




One should not point feet towards fire, teacher, a Brahmin, a cow, a maiden, an old man and a child.

paadaabhyaam na sprusedagnim gurum braahnameva ca

naiva gaam wa kumariim ca vrudhdham na sisum tathaa

Chanakya Niti, Chapter 7,verse 6



Don’t be Over simple! Be crooked!

People should not be over simple; go to a forest and see. Straight trees are lumbered there while the crooked ones stay put.

naatyantam saralairbhaavyam gatvaa pasya vanasthaliim

chidhyante saralaastatra kubjaastishtanti paadapaahaa

Chanakya Niti, Chapter 7,verse 12




If the following seven are asleep, one should awaken them: a student, a servant, a wayfarer, one tormented by hunger, one tremulous in fear, the store keeper and a gate keeper .

vidhyarthii sevakah paantha; kshudhaartaa bayakaatarah

bhandaari ca pratihaari sapta suptaan prabhodhayet

Chanakya Niti, Chapter 9,verse 6



These seven, if asleep, one should not wake up: a snake, a king, a tiger, a boar, a child, somebody else’s dog and a fool.

arhi nrupam ca saarduulam kiti ca baalakam  tathaa

parasvaanam ca muurkham ca sapta suptaan na bhodhayet.

Chanakya Niti, Chapter 9,verse 7




TIRIKADUKAM (Tri Kaduka) is one of the 18 minor didactic works. The author Nallaathanaar warns that one should deal with Brahmins carefully. One should treat a Brahmin like fire; don’t close too near; it will burn you; don’t go too far; you will feel cold and suffer. The message is treat them with due respect. Since Brahmins of the golden days—Krta Yuga—and the olden days  were pure in character, their words came came true; and if it was a  good word it  benefitted one; if it was a curse it harmed one.

Nallaathanaar says,

Oh, farmers! Wise men say three things are good for you—

1.Dont try to get money through gambling

2.Even if you know a Brahmin for long, fear him like fire

3.Do farming with interest


Tiruvalluvar, the author of Tamil Veda Titukkural use the same for a king


How to move with a king? It is just like one who warms oneself in the fire, neither going too near, nor too far – kural couplet 691


Adi Shankara was the one who used this fire imagery first. Later Tiruvalluvar, Nallaathanaar, Kamban,  Bhavananthi of Nannul and several authors used it.


Adi Shankara used it in the context of devotees; Lords says that he does not discriminate; those who are nearer to him get the benefits of his warmth; those who go away from him lose his grace.


It is very interesting to compare all of them.





Written by London Swaminathan 


Date: 1 JANUARY 2018


Time uploaded in London- 16-09



Post No. 4573

Pictures shown here are taken from various sources such as Facebook friends, Books, Google and newspapers; thanks


Chanakya did not write about cooking or the culinary customs of any culture. Nor did he write a book on health or medicines. But in his didactic work he makes passing remarks about the bad habits in eating. Let us look at some verses/slokas from his work Chanakyaniti.


You are what you eat


He says,

The conduct reveals the family;

the speech reveals one’s country;

the agitation the affection;

and the body reveals one’s food.

–chapter 3, sloka/verse 2

The sloka/verse in Sanskrit runs like this:


aachaarah ulamaakhyaati desamaakhyaati bhaashanam

sambramah snehamaakhyaati vapuraakhyaati bhojamam.

It is very true that the food shapes our body. In the olden days they used to say ‘you are what you eat’ and ‘Tell me the books you read, I will tell you what type of person you are’ and ‘tell me your friends, I will tell you who you are’; now we can tell anyone, ‘tell me your health problems, I will tell you what you eat and vice versa’.



Burning without Fire!

Living in a petty village,

service to a low born person,

bad food,

irascible wife,

foolish son, and a widowed daughter,

these six singe the body even when there is no fire.

Bad food is one of the things that upset us physically and mentally.

The sloka/verse is as follows

kukgraamavaasah kulahiinasevaa kubhojanam krodhamukhi cha bharyaa

putrascha muurkho vidhavaa cha kanyaa vinaagninaa shat pradahanti kaayam

–chapter 4, verse 8


Eating in indigestion is Poison

In another verse Chanakya says that eating in indigestion is poisonous. We live in an era where enormous food is forced on us in dinners and parties, where as there are millions of people born in poor families go without food.

Sastra without repeated study is poison

eating in indigestion is poison

an assembly for the poor is poison

a young woman for an old man is poison.

Here is the sloka/ verse giving the message,

anabyaasena visham saastram ajiirne bhoajanam visham

visham sabhaa daritrasya vrddasya tarunii visham

–chapter 4, verse 15



Be happy with what you have

Chanakya says, “one should be satisfied with one’s wife, meals and wealth. One should never be satisfied with study, austerities and charity.”

It is very important keep our tongue under control. The sloka/verse in Sanskrit runs like this:


santoshastrishu kartavyah svadaare bhojane dhane

trishu chaiva na kartavyo adhyayane tapadhaanayoh

–chapter 7, verse 5

Contentment in eating is very important. To get contentment in food, famous TV hypnotist Paul Mc Kenna says, “Never ever eat food while watching TV or reading books. Pay full attention to your eating and enjoy every bit you eat. Take little by little and enjoy it. By doing so you can avoid over eating and feel full in your stomach.

An easy advice anyone can follow without spending a penny.