595 – Value Benchmarks

National Integration Through Thirukkural And Sanskrit

Value Benchmarks

A Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of a multi-national company took his father  to an Old Age Home in the outskirts of the city.  He wanted his father to spend the rest of his life at the Old Age Home.  Previous day, he had intimated his father about the decision taken by himself, his wife and his children. His father gracefully, accepted the decision saying that, the happiness of his son is more important than his comfort.

As the car drove through the  lanes and by-lanes of the city, the son was recalling his childhood days, when his father, a scavenger with the city corporation, used to clean manholes and come home with unbearable  stench. His detest for his father started then.

His father wanted him to study well and so put him on to a very prestigious school. To meet the education fees, which his father could not meet within his salary, his father would take up scavenging work outside of his service hours and meet the deficit.  As a school boy, he would be comparing himself with his other friends and always felt, he was under-privileged. Whenever, he expressed his disappointment with his father, his father would try to address his needs.

He studied well and pursued his higher education abroad on a Scholarship in a world renowned University.  Presently, he is in charge of a multi-national company.

He enjoyed what every individual dreams of:

  • Excellent Academic Qualifications
  • Sound Financial Status
  • Powerful Official Post
  • High Social Esteem

Though, his father was active even now, his wife and children could not tolerate him for his old-fashioned views and life style. They felt him an embarrassment to be around, when their friends and relatives, visit them.  Since, he also did not have any great fondness for his father, he agreed with them. Hence the decision to leave him at the old age home.

He reached the old age home and completed the registration formalities. As he was going about the registration formalities, he saw his father speaking to the owner of the old age home.  He could not miss the camaraderie in their chat.

As he was about to leave, he went to the owner of the old age home and asked him, if he knew his father before. The owner said, his father is known to him for over 30 years. When asked, how he knew him, he said, ‘Your father approached me, about 30 years back, to adopt you from this orphanage”.

Moral of the Story

The index of an individual’s life is the values they practice and is not based on their academic, economic or social status.

Thiruvalluvar in Couplet 595 says “The stem-length of a water-borne flower depends on the depth of the pond or tank. In the same manner, the growth of a person’s greatness, prosperity and achievements is proportionate to the level of his thoughts”.

வெள்ளத்து அனைய மலர்நீட்டம் மாந்தர்தம்
உள்ளத்து அனையது உயர்வு

Vellathu Anaya Malar-neettam Maandhar-tham
Ullathu anaiyadhu Uyarvu

பரிமேலழகர் உரை: 

வெள்ளத்து அனைய மலர் நீட்டம் – நின்ற நீரின் அளவினவாம் நீர்ப்பூக்களின் தாளினது நீளங்கள்; மாந்தர் தம் உள்ளத்து அனையது உயர்வு – அது போல மக்கள்தம் ஊக்கத்தளவினதாம் அவர் உயர்ச்சி. (‘மலர்’ ஆகுபெயர். நீர்மிக்க துணையும் மலர்த்தாள் நீளும் என்பதுபட ‘வெள்ளத்து அனைய’ என்றார். இவ்வுவமையாற்றலான் ஊக்கம் மிக்க துணையும் மக்கள் உயர்வர் என்பது பெறப்பட்டது. உயர்தல் – பொருள் படைகளான் மிகுதல்.).

Sanskrit Translation by Shri S.N. Sri Rama Desikan

 தை₃ர்க்₄யம் ப்ரஸூன நாலஸ்ய நீராகா₃த₄  நிப₃ந்த₄னம் |
ததா₂ ஜீவித வ்ருத்₃தி₄ஸ்₂ச ஸ்யாது₃த் ஸாஹ நிப₃ந்த₄னா ||