228 – Organ Donation

National Integration Through Thirukkural And Sanskrit

Organ donation

One of the richest and most powerful man in Brazil named Scarpa, made waves when he announced plans to bury his million-dollar car so he could drive around the afterlife in style. He received lots of media attention and was criticized for the foolish gesture. Why wouldn’t he donate the car to charity? How out of touch with reality is this guy? He never cared about people’s opinions.

On the appointed day, large number of people including media persons, assembled at his place. He dug a pit, wide and deep enough to hold his Car. Moments before lowering the car in the pit, he revealed his genuine motive: To create awareness for organ donation.

“People condemn me because I wanted to bury a million dollar car. In fact most people bury something a lot more valuable than my car.”  He went on to add:  “People bury hearts, livers, lungs, eyes and kidneys. When so many people are waiting for an organ transplant, burying one’s healthy organs that can save so many lives is absurd and criminal.”

World over 37 million are blind and 15 million are in India alone, out of which, three million are children.  While India needs 2.5 lakh donated eyes every year, the hospitals are able to source approximately only around 18,000.  On an average, around 15,000 people die in India every day, out of which only 50 families donate the eyes of their near and dear ones on their death.

Traditionally, one passes on their material possessions to their near and dear ones after their death. But, the human organs which will be buried or cremated within hours of one’s death, can be used to light up the lives of many people. The faculties endowed by God at one’s birth and used during life time can be passed on to the less privileged, at least after death. That alone can be the right tribute to our Creator.

Thiruvalluvar in his couplet 228 says  “A cruel graceless person who loses all his hoarded wealth without having offered it to the needy is perhaps not aware of the pleasure he could have, on seeing the delighted smiling face of the needy recipients.”

ஈத்துஉவக்கும் இன்பம் அறியார்கொல் தாம்உடைமை
வைத்துஇழக்கும் வன்க ணவர்

Eeththu-uvakkum Inbam Ariyaar-kol Thaam-udaimai
Vaiththu-izhakkum Vankanavar

பரிமேலழகர் உரை:

தாம் உடைமை வைத்து இழக்கும் வன்கணவர் – தாம் உடைய பொருளை ஈயாது வைத்துப் பின் இழந்துபோம் அருளிலாதார், ஈத்து உவக்கும் இன்பம் அறியார்கொல் – வறியார்க்கு வேண்டியவற்றைக் கொடுத்து அவர் உவத்தலான் அருளுடையார் எய்தும் இன்பத்தினைக் கண்டறியார் கொல்லோ! (உவக்கும் என்பது காரணத்தின்கண் வந்த பெயரெச்சம், அஃது இன்பம் என்னும் காரியப் பெயர் கொண்டது. அறிந்தாராயின், தாமும் அவ்வின்பத்தை எய்துவது அல்லது வைத்து இழவார் என்பது கருத்து.).

Sanskrit Translation by Shri S.N. Srirama Desikan

அபு⁴க்தம் ஸ்வேன சான்யேப்⁴யோ(அ)ப்யத³த்தம்யஸ்ய வை த⁴னம்
க்ஷீயதே கிம் ந ஜானாதி ஸ ஸௌக்²யம் தா³னமூலகம் ? ||