Faith

Seek the virtuous

Vedanta Desika, in his Subhasita Nivi, gives the assurance that even if a person is not intrinsically virtuous, yet the mere darshan of great men will wipe out his sins and purify him. Even a passing contact with such men will endow a man with good qualities and make him fit to be an Acharya himself, elaborated M.K.Srinivasan in a discourse. Desika further says that contact with great men also gives a person jnana. Once a man gets acquainted with men of virtue, he is no longer tempted by money or beauty. Gradually, his pride is vanquished and he no longer confuses the body with the atma. He stops taking pride in his appearance.

Association with a jnani brings innumerable spiritual benefits. Viswamitra attained a high and respected state because of contact with sage Vasistha. A man may have many faults, but if he receives instruction from a jnani, he becomes capable of attracting the attention of others through his good conduct. The moon has no light of its own, but only reflects the light of the Sun. Likewise, even if a man may not on his own be able to draw the attention of people, his association with a jnani makes people look up to him. A cotton thread is not a valuable object, but it can be used to string together valuable gems. The thread, by being in contact with precious gems, attains an esteemed status. The footwear of an ordinary person will receive no respect, but when worn by a great man, the sandals come to be revered. A blade of grass, when it transforms into the Brahmastra, through recitation of relevant mantras, becomes a much feared and respected weapon.

Muddy water is purified when it joins the Ganges. Kavyas and stories are purified if they are about God. A man is purified when he gets atma jnana.

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Printable version | Mar 31, 2020 6:40:58 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/society/faith/seek-the-virtuous/article26239970.ece

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