MISCELLANEOUS

Follow dharma unerringly

CHENNAI, OCT 12. It is common to blame others for one's misfortunes. Lacking in the moral fibre to introspect and face up to one's shortcomings, many people tend to justify their actions to others, as if the endorsement received can change the rights and wrongs of a situation. When we violate traffic rules or try to bypass established norms, we try to make it appear all right with the rhetorical statement, "am I the only one committing errors? Are there not other worse people, causing serious harm to others?" A few may feel that self-preservation is necessary to get ahead in life, but it is mere delusion.

In her discourse Dr. Sudha Seshian said that one problem dogging humanity in this Yuga is the inability of people to live as human beings. The law of the jungle should not be the guiding factor; rather one should identify and emulate role models in order to lead a blameless life.

A great scientist once said science without religion is lame and religion without science is blind. Just as how a student will automatically arrive at the correct answer in a mathematical problem if the correct steps of deduction are followed, one should closely adhere to the paths of virtue as enunciated in scriptures. After crossing the newly built dam into Lanka for the purpose of waging a war, Lord Rama nevertheless followed the norms of diplomacy, despatched messengers to Ravana. When the latter's spies were caught masquerading as apes, Rama exhibited tremendous tolerance towards the demons who had sneaked in to gauge his army's strength. With a smile He solicitously asked them to leave after evaluating the full strength of his assembled army, enjoining Vibhishana to help the enemy agents complete their mission of reconnaissance. He further issued a diktat safeguarding the messengers, stating that despite their chosen vocation, spies and those who had surrendered their arms in an enemy camp should be treated honourably. The norms of dharma should be unerringly followed, for, no amount of argument can justify wrongful means employed in reaching one's goal.

It is a common refrain that it is not at all practical or easy to follow virtue in every step of one's life, for, one is not a Rama. The purpose of the Lord's manifestation is not to show the Supreme Being's glory, but for the edification of mankind, so that people will adopt correct practices. Among all the sentient beings it is man alone who is imbued with a sense of right and wrong.

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