Sunday, March 14, 2010

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 197 (Vol #3) Dated 14 Mar 2010.

DEIVATHIN KURAL # 197 (Vol #3) Dated 14 Mar 2010.
(These e-mails are translations of talks given by Periyaval of Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam, over a period of some 60 years while he was the pontiff in the earlier part of the last century. These have been published by Vanadi Padippagam, Chennai, in seven volumes of a thousand pages each as Deivathin Kural. To day we are proceeding from page No 898 of Vol 3 of the Tamil original. The readers are reminded that herein 'man/he' includes 'woman/she' too, mostly. These e-mails are all available at http://Advaitam. blogspot. com constantly updated.)

115. Artha Saastra too reiterates this Yagnya Valkya Smruti that the traditions and culture of the state defeated in battle should be nurtured and taken care of. Though the winning king may retain control in his hands, he is to do so through a local person of social standing only. Preferably such a person should be a close relative of the erstwhile king who has been defeated. On many occasions the rule has evolved to the defeated king himself or if he is killed in battle, to his son. For example, when Vali was killed, though Sugriva was made the king, Vali's son Angada was made the crown prince. Similarly when Ravana was killed in battle, Vibhishana, Ravana's younger brother was made the king.

116. The defeated state should pay a yearly cess to the winner. They are not to go to war with anyone without consultations. Thus their defence and foreign affairs will have to be in a sub-servient manner. But, they could have a fair amount of independence in their internal affairs. Except as was obtaining in the Indian sub-continent, nowhere else in the world, such generousness can be observed.

117. A king was to observe six principles while dealing with other kings of other countries, known as 'shaadgunyam' , as given by the Artha Saastraa-s. These are, 'sandi, vigraham, yaanam, sthanam or aasanam, samsrayam and dvaiteebhavam'. These are explained hereinafter. 'Sandi' means a mutual agreement of peace, which is incumbent on both the nations. 'Vigraham' is breaking of these mutual agreement and instead of allies, the other is considered as an enemy. 'Sthanam' or 'Aasanam' is neutrality or non-alignment. 'Yaanam' is like the period of cold-war, when with out declaration, preparation for an eventual confrontation takes place. 'Samsrayam' is joining hands with a more powerful third party, against the earlier opponent. This is very similar to the idea that, 'the enemy's enemy could prove to be a friend'! Such an act being a policy of convenience, it is more related to diplomacy and not really 'Dharma'!

118. In the First World War, Austria joined with Germany and Serbia got into 'Samsrayam' with Russia. The differences of views between these two nations assumed huge proportions to become a World War! 'Dwaiteebhavam' is to join hands with a third neighbour so as to be able to wage a war with the second one! This is very close to the idea of 'divide and rule', in which you exploit both the elements who have been divided. Whereas 'Dwaiteebhavam' is for one to interpose between the second and third, so as to be able to deal effectively with the second! As I said earlier, this is an approach lacking in integrity, more appropriately to be called, duplicity!

119. The Parts of the Government. When I have spoken about the 'shaadgunyam' of foreign policy, I should be talking about the seven parts ('sapta angam' or 'sapta prakruti') of the machinery of a Government. They are 'swami, amaatya, suhrud, kosa, rashtra, durga and bala', respectively. Let me explain. Swami means the King. Amaatya are the ministers. Suhrud means friendly countries and well wishers. Kosa is the treasury, which includes the repository of wealth, money and also the nation's agricultural and industrial produces. Rashtra is the nation with its citizens. Durg is the fort and defence works. Bala is the strength that is, moral - rightness of Dharma and physical - the Fighting Forces!

120. Thiruvalluvar rearranged this in a different order as the complimentary infrastructure for the King, as the first Kural in the chapter on 'Porut Paal'. "padai, kudi, koozh, amaichu, natpu, aran; aarum udaiyaan arasarul eru". In this Kural, udaiyaan is the owner that is the King. Padai is the bala of strength. Kudi is the rashtra or the nation. Koozh is the food, the wherewithal, that is the kosa or Treasury. Amaichu is the various amaatya or ministries. Natpu is suhrud. Aran is Durg. What is given in Dharma Artha Saastraa-s is word for word repeated by Thiruvalluvar!

121. To sum it up, a cursory glance of Artha Saastra may give you the impression that 'Artha', the meaning, means, money, material, resources and their availability to be the most important priority. On a deeper understanding, we will find that Dharma is the priority one and Artha is only secondary. Moreover, if you have to use unfair means of Adharma, one may as well do without that!

122. What ever be our aim in life, Artha gives it a possibility of attainment. Let it be happiness or a reasonable life style, or 'daanam' that is philanthropy in being kind to others, money makes it possible. People may be very well behaved and morally intentioned, may be they are very devoted to God and wish to pursue Gnana, it can happen only when the king does his job of protecting his people. If there is no law and order in the country, where is Dharma, Gnana and Moksha?

123. Chanakya says that though it is the impression of all that, Artha enables only attainment of Kaama, it is also the basis of the other two manly pursuits of humans, namely Dharma and Moksha. There is another way of looking at it. Amongst the four Ashrama-s, the Brhmachari and Sanyasi are both dependent upon the Gruhasta, (the farmer, producer, shop keeper, crafts man and so on,) for sustenance. The Gruhasta is mainly concerned with the Artha of Living. So, Chanakya also contributes to the idea of the four 'Purusha Artha' being 'Artha, Kaama, Moksha through Dharmic methods, (morally acceptable means)!

124. The fact that other Purusha Artha-s are dependent on Artha Saastra can be viewed from another angle. Starting from the task of protecting the Veda-s by Adhyayanam and Adhyapakam, all the professions can thrive only when the learners and teachers of these are protected and enabled to pursue their profession in a peaceful environment. The Government has an important role to play here, that of protecting the 14 Dharma Pramana-s (the Sruti, Smruti scriptures) and 18 Vidya Sthana-s which are actually the varied disciplines! Thus Artha Saastra is like the protecting armour for them all.

125. While talking of 18 Vidya Sthana-s, of the four Upaveda-s, other than Artha Saastra, Ayur, Dhanur and Gaandarva Veda-s, it not only means that they too need the support of the government but also that, they are closely related to the King's job of governing and fighting battles. There will be casualties in war. So the king and his soldiers should know first aid and treatment for various likely injuries. There is a portion of Ayur Veda known as Salya Saastra, which is about removal of the broken pieces of spears or arrows from the wounded soldiers body. I do not have to tell you as to how the king and his soldiers were rather avid in learning about Dhanur Veda.

126. As far as Gaandarva Veda is concerned, the king was considered as a Patron of Arts. Bhoja, Vikramaditya, Mahendra Varma and Krishna Devaraya, were all well qualified in the arts of Dance, Drama and Music. They were ardent fans of well known artists of their times and took good care of such people.

127. During Agnata Vaasa( at the end of Vana Vaasa, when for one year Pandavas were supposed to remain incognito), Arjuna in Virata Desa was a dance master. Udaiyaan playing on the Veena subdued an elephant which was running amok in Masth. There are many such examples in Ithihasa-s, Purana-s and Kavya-s! While talking of Sri Rama's adorable character qualities in the beginning of Ayodhya Canto, it is said that he was foremost in Music and such Gaandarva Vidya-s, "...gandarve cha bhuvi sreshta : ...".

128. Even when you come into recent historical times, Mahendra Varma Pallava had a pseudonym as 'chitra kaara puli', meaning a tiger amongst painters! He has also written a comedy by the name of 'Matta Vilasa Prahasanam'. In Kudumiya Hills he has etched on stone the Sangeeta Saastra for future generations. Raja Raja Chozha had a royal pseudonym as, 'Raja Vidyadara'. In the Tanjore big temple, he had organised 'Aariya Koothu and Tamil Koothu'. In recent times, the reason for the revival of Music, Dance and Drama in Tanjore, is mainly due to the Saraboji and Naik dynasty of Maharashtrian kings. The king was supposed to be a 'parangathan' in arts. The word means that he is supposed to have crossed all borders and limits, in nurturing and cultivation of the arts!

129. Ambal and Easwara as the two 'Hamsa-s', white swans, are said to be in conversation with each other. The 18 Vidya Sthana-s have emerged from that conversation of the two white swans in the 'Anahata Chakra', one of the six Chakra-s of the causal human body! So says Adi Sankara in the 38th of the sloka-s in Soundarya Lahiri, "...yataa laabhaat ashta dasa gunita vidya pariNati :...". These 18 Vidya Sthana-s are (to remind our readers), Ruk, Yajus, Sama, Atharva Veda-s (four Veda-s), Siksha, Kalpa, Vyakarana, Nirukta, Jyotisha, Chandas Saastraa-s (six Veda Anga-s), Mimamasa, Nyaya, Dharma Sastra-s, Purana-s(these also separately number 18!), Ayur Veda, Dhanur Veda, Gaandarva Veda and Artha Saastraa-s ( totalling eight). The King was required to be fairly well versed if not an authority in all of them. Since he was mainly guided by the Artha Saastra in so doing, that is its greatness!

130. Sukhra the Guru of Asura-s and Bruhaspathi the Guru of Deva-s have both authored Saastra-s on running a Government. Brhma has authored a Saastra each on the four Purusha Artha of Dharma, Artha, Kaama and Moksha. From that the portion on Governance has been briefly covered by one Visalaksha, called Visalaksham. Bruhaspathi further shortened it. Medhatiti (who had written a commentary on Manu Smruti) and Vignaneswar(who had written Mitakshari), have both commented on Raja Neethi or diplomacy, which are respected for their thought content even in the modern world of to day! There are many areas in Ramayana and Maha Bharatha, which are throwing ample lights on many subtle points of diplomacy and governance!

131. Please do not forget what I said very early on this subject. When whatever said in Artha Saastra is agreeable to Dharma Saastra, then and only then, they have the power and sanction of authority. We hear this from the mouth of Chanakya himself when he says that, "whenever there is conflict of interpretation between Dharma Saastra-s and human and governmental transactions, procedures and methods, the King should decide on the basis of Dharma only!" "Dharmo rakshati rakshita :" , meaning that, the king protects righteousness and in turn Dharmam protects the protector!




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