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Chapter 24: Fame

28 Nov
Give, and live with fame; there is
no other gain for lives.
231
 All that chroniclers chronicle, is the renown that rests
on those who give to the needy.
232
Those who praise, praise and sign paeans, on the renown that rests
on those who give to the needy.
232 V2
Nothing other than incomparable fame,
lasts forever in this world.
233
The world of devas, will cease to praise pure scholars, if one,
through his deeds across this world, earns everlasting fame.
234
Growth (of fame) amidst adverstiy and survival (of name) after death,
are possible only for the smartest.
235
Appear with fame, if you must appear; if not,
it is better not to appear than appear.
236
Why do those, who live with no fame, instead of blaming themselves,
blame those who revile them.
237
Reproach will remain for those who, with no fame,
have no legacy to leave behind.
238
The unblemished, fertile yield will diminish for the land
that bears a body with no repute.
239
Those who lead a life free of blame, are alive;
those who live devoid of fame, are not alive.
240

# Kural 235 is the trickiest and the toughest kural that I have encountered so far. There are conflicting interpretations, leading somewhat to the meaning that I have inferred. An exact translation seems impossible. ‘Natham’ (நத்தம்) can mean growth; strangely, it can also mean decay; it could be a banana tree, or a snail or shell, or night; a place, a beech, needle of a clock.

# Kural 236 is another intriguing kural. ‘Appear’ (தோன்று) is interpreted as ‘be born(as humans)’ by Parimelazhagar and other ancient writers. Modern interpretors tend to look at it as ‘appear in a field’.

———————————————————————————————

புகழ்

ஈத லிசைபட வாழ்த லதுவல்ல
தூதிய மில்லை யுயிர்க்கு.
231
உரைப்பா ருரைப்பவை யெல்லா மிரப்பார்க்கொன்
றீவார்மே னிற்கும் புகழ்.
232
ஒன்றா வுலகத் துயர்ந்த புகழல்லாற்
பொன்றாது நிற்பதொன் றில்.
233
நிலவரை நீள்புக ழாற்றிற் புலவரைப்
போற்றாது புத்தே ளுலகு.
234
நத்தம்போற் கேடும் உளதாகுஞ் சாக்காடும்
வித்தகர்க் கல்லா லரிது
235
தோன்றிற் புகழொடு தோன்றுக வஃதிலார்
தோன்றலிற் றோன்றாமை நன்று.
236
புகழ்பட வாழாதார் தம்நோவார் தம்மை
யிகழ்வாரை நோவ தெவன்.
237
வசையென்ப வையத்தார்க் கெல்லா மிசையென்னு
மெச்சம் பெறாஅ விடின்
238
வசையிலா வண்பயன் குன்று மிசையிலா
யாக்கை பொறுத்த நிலம்.
239
வசையொழிய வாழ்வாரே வாழ்வா யிசையொழிய
வாழ்வாரே வாழா தவர்.
240
 
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Posted by on November 28, 2011 in Aram, Thirukkural

 

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