110 – Being Ungrateful

National Integration Through Thirukkural And Sanskrit

Being Ungrateful

In Mahabharata, the character of Karna is considered unique and without parallels. During the build-up to the final war, Lord Krishna reveals Karna, that, he is the eldest of the Pandavas and if he accepts to switch sides, he would be made the King and the war, which could result in lakhs of causalities could be avoided.  Similarly, Karna’s mother Kunti also advances emotional pleas and tries to convince him against fighting his brothers, in the war.

Karna replied, that, when his parentage was questioned and was the object of humiliation by all and sundry, only Duryodhana redeemed his self-esteem. Karna concedes that, the gesture of Duryodhana might have been entirely selfish, as he saw Karna as a formidable challenger to Arjuna. But as a beneficiary of Duryodhana’s benevolence, he was duty bound to fight the war on behalf of Duryodhana.  He knew that, if he switched sides, he could rule the world and in case, he continued to fight his brothers, he is certain to die. He said that, in spite of it, he would not like to be remembered by History as someone who has been ungrateful by ditching a person who stood by him in his tougher times. He says, there can be no sin greater than that.

Thiruvalluvar in his couplet 110 emphasizes the same:

எந்நன்றி கொன்றார்க்கும் உய்வுஉண்டாம் உய்வுஇல்லை
செய்ந்நன்றி கொன்ற மகற்கு

Ennandri Kondraark-kum Uyvu-undaam Uyvu-illai
Seynnandri Kondra Magarku

 பரிமேலழகர் உரை:

எந்நன்றி கொன்றார்க்கும் உய்வு உண்டாம் – பெரிய அறங்களைச் சிதைத்தார்க்கும் பாவத்தின் நீங்கும் வாயில் உண்டாம்; செய்ந்நன்றி கொன்ற மகற்கு உய்வு இல்லை – ஒருவன் செய்த நன்றியைச் சிதைத்த மகனுக்கு அஃது இல்லை. (பெரிய அறங்களைச் சிதைத்தலாவது, ஆன்முலை அறுத்தலும், மகளிர் கருவினைச் சிதைத்தலும், பார்ப்பார்த்தப்புதலும் (புறநா.34) முதலிய பாதகங்களைச் செய்தல். இதனால் செய்ந்நன்றி கோறலின் கொடுமை கூறப்பட்டது.).

Salvation is available to people who might commit cruel acts. However, no  salvation is possible for a person who is ungrateful to those who rendered him help.

Sanskrit Translation by  Shri S.N. Srirama Desikan

த₄ர்மாந்தர விஹீனானாம் வித்₃யதே பாப மோசனம் |
க்ருத ஜ்ஞதா த₄ர்மஹீனே நாஸ்தி வை பாப மோக்ஷணம் ||