Those who can put the welfare of others before everything else are few. But it is these few who sustain the world, said Malayaman, in a discourse. If at all the world still exists, it is because of good people, says the Tamil work Puranaanooru.

The Puranaanooru lists the qualities of these good people. Nectar is available only to celestials, and mortals do not have access to it. Nectar, if consumed, confers immortality on one. So if at all someone manages to lay his hands on nectar, he will not be willing to share it with others. But a good man is one who will seek out deserving people and share it with them. The Tamil work Paditrupathu says if a good man finds something sweet, he will share it with others.

Fear is a major factor that governs our actions, and if we fear that doing something will result in sorrow for us, we will refrain from doing it, even if it is the right thing to do. But good people are not deterred by fear. The Tamil work Naladiyar says that whatever one should know, should be learnt; one’s actions should bring happiness to everyone. Those who live their lives in this manner will never know sorrow.

Puranaanooru says the virtuous never have low morale. They are never dejected. They never do anything with a selfish motive. The Tamil work Manimekalai also extols selfless people. The Puranaanooru says that it is the virtuous who keep the world alive. This verse was not written by an ordinary poet. The poet in this case was not one who needed a gift from anyone for, he was the king of Madurai. He must have written it with a view to inculcating good values in his subjects.

More In: Faith | Friday Review