Faith

Dharma, the valid currency

The crux of the human predicament is about choosing how to act in various situations one confronts in life where the paths of dharma and adharma lie ahead. Dhritarashtra is afflicted by sleeplessness and Vidhura is called to offer advice that would set him at rest. Vidhura tells Dhritarashtra that to sleep well in the night, one has to strive during day. This is symbolic of the human situation where one’s present actions and behaviour is responsible for one’s future life, since the next janma is a certainty and not mere conjecture, pointed out Sri B. Sundarkumar in a discourse.

Even animals by instinct collect what is necessary in summer to help them survive during winter. To be relaxed in old age, you save when you are able to earn. To live a better life in the future, you try to do what is necessary in this lifetime. Just as when one migrates to another country he needs to have the official foreign exchange to make his living there, dharma is the only valid currency that accompanies the soul in its journey through countless births.

A common folk song describes the life of a person who has spent his life time tending cattle and building a home to live comfortably; but when overtaken by death, none of these can accompany him while whatever good deeds he has done come rushing to his side like a faithful horse responding to a mere whip lash. Both acts of dharma and adharma add on to the worth of an individual. Good deeds not only increase one’s moral worth but also tend to become habitual, and create awareness and viveka, which is necessary for liberation. Bad deeds increase one’s list of sins and again because of repeated wrong doing, make one lose the sense of discrimination. Every little bit of goodness becomes an asset to win the Lord’s grace.

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Printable version | Apr 22, 2021 1:02:22 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/society/faith/dharma-the-valid-currency/article22707538.ece

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